Austin, Texas. Rooster Teeth offices. The crew has gathered once again to continue their Minecraft Let's Play, one in which Gavin had already set out on annoying the others.
"God damn it, Gavin!" the man informally known as Rage Quit yelled hoarsely, three seconds into recording.
"What did he do this time?" Geoff asked with a groan, setting his controller down to watch the fireworks that were already erupting.
"He killed me again!" he shouted, voice trembling with anger.
"You can't prove that," the Englishman chuckled, using his controller to run away from the crime scene.
"I can't? You have my diamond pickaxe!" Michael said, pointing at Gavin's screen.
"What, this old thing?" he asked, feigning innocence as he started looking through Michael's chest, which held a few iron tools along with several more diamond. "I've had this all along."
"Gavin, just give him back his pick..." Jack sighed, thinking about complaining about his work environment. He then wondered what good would it do, so he fell back into silence.
"Hang on, I'll solve this," Ray said with a laugh, switching to his iron sword.
"Oh no!" Gavin yelled, seeing Ray holding the weapon, charging towards him. He quickly dropped the diamond pick on the ground, and then began running away from Ray. "Here, take it. Leave me alone!"
"Kick his ass Ray, he still stole some of my other shit, too!"
"No I didn't!"
"Don't worry, I got this," Ray said, quickly catching up to Gavin who was sporadically jumping up the cubed mountain, missing the majority of his jumps.
"Ray, don't! I'll give you this diamond!" Gavin said quickly, switching to Michael's diamond in an attempt to bribe him.
"Or I could just kill you and have all your stuff!" he said, adding a maniacal laugh as he butchered Gavin's in game character.
Gavin let out an elongated "no" as Ray began collecting Gavin's items. Michael leaned out of his chair and held his hand up. Ray nodded at Michael and gave him a high-five.
"Can I at least have my sword back?" Gavin asked pleasantly, going back into the world.
"Of course you can't have your sword back!" Michael growled.
Before Gavin could beg some more, the room was filled by a sudden violet flash, making Gavin stop mid-plea.
"What was that?" Ray asked hesitantly, knowing he wasn't the only one who saw it judging by the silence.
"I don't know," Jack said, unsure of himself, looking at his screen. "Check your equipment, guys. Make sure nothing broke."
Michael pretended to unzip his pants, then jumped from his chair and turned to Gavin. "Is my equipment okay?"
"Ew, gross!" Gavin chuckled with disgust, thinking Michael had actually presented himself.
"Two for flinching!" he exclaimed gleefully, punching Gavin in the shoulder multiple times.
"That was more than two!" Gavin yelped as he clasped his shoulder and began rocking back and forth.
"I'm surprised he can count," Geoff remarked sarcastically after checking his gear. "All my stuff is working, must have been one of the others."
"Yeah, mine is working too," Jack said, stroking his beard lightly. "How about you Ray?"
"I'm a little busy," he laughed as he watched Michael go back in to hit Gavin in the shoulder again.
"Oh, for-" Jack muttered angrily, taking off his headphones to address the duo. "Guys, come on, we need to know if any thing is broken. You can continue making out once we're done."
"He's faking it!" Michael said pointedly, trying to pin it all on Gavin. "Look at him, he's smiling! It's just like in soccer, when a player pretends to be injured to give the other team a red card!"
"You mean football?" Gavin asked, smiling at Michael as his face began turning red.
"Guys," Geoff said groggily, rubbing his temple as he already began getting a headache. "Check your stuff so we can get on with our damn day."
"Yeah, Gavin," Michael murmured as he checked his headphones, screen, and Xbox. "All clear over here."
"Same thing here," Ray chirped happily.
The others turned and stared at Gavin, waiting for his answer.
"Mine looks good," Gavin said quietly, not having looked at his computer. He then quickly spun his chair around and began to check his monitor once he saw Michael getting out of his chair. "It's fine! It's fine, Michael. It was probably just lightning."
"Iot wogh prohohlee yust loightnin," he said mockingly, placing his hand on his cheeks as he pretended to have a thick English accent, before dropping his hands back to his sides and making his face more stern. "Of course it wasn't fucking lightning, it's not even raining! And what kind of lightning is purple?"
"The Texas kind?"
"Both of you stop arguing!" Jack yelled. Though he spoke loudly on a regular basis, he never really forced his voice that much. He then sighed as he rubbed the bridge of his nose, when a knock came from the door. "Come in."
"Hey, guys," Kara said, opening the door but not entering the room. "Burnie heard a bunch of yelling, and he wanted me to tell you that he's the only one that's allowed to yell, and that you're upsetting his stomach."
"We will, thank you," Jack said appreciatively, turning back to the guys. "Our gear is fine, the weather is nice, and both of you are idiots, can we just go back to-"
Jack was interrupted mid-sentence when the room filled with multiple colors. Kara yelped and began rubbing her eyes, which were misted over by a series of bright colors.
"What was that?" she asked, rubbing her eyes. No answer was given. "Guys?"
Kara muttered something under her breath, thinking that she had just taken part in another RT Life segment. Her eyes cleared over after a minute and she preemptively began smiling for the cameras, but her smile faltered when she didn't see any cameras. Or any of the guys. She went inside the room and looked under one of the desks. She then looked at the closed window. And then to the door that she was blocking.
Where the hell did they go?
"No, no, no! That's not right either!" Twilight said testily, stomping impatiently around the ground floor of the library.
"What's wrong, Twi?" Spike asked, peeking down the stairs at the pacing unicorn. Her hair was more frazzled than usual, and her eyes had small bags under them.
"I just can't do it, Spike!" her horn glowed brightly for a few moments, before dissipating in an instant. She let out an exasperated sigh, growing impatient at herself.
"What are you trying to do?" he asked curiously. Twilight rarely acted this way, but Spike knew that when she did, it usually had something to do with her trying a spell. Though she was exceptional at magic, she wasn't perfect.
"A spell," she said simply. Spike gave her an unimpressed look, telling her that he knew she was doing a spell, but wanted a more specific answer. Twilight sighed, seeing that she had given Spike knowledge he already knew. "I'm trying to do a spell to make me more focused and organized. By using it, I hoped to be able to do more in a smaller time frame, but I just can't seem..."
"To focus?" he finished with a chuckle.
"Spike, now isn't the time. The girls will be here in a few minutes and I need this spell to work!" she mumbled, horn burning vividly once again, just to sizzle out just as quickly as it glowed. "Ugh, this isn't working."
"Have you ever tried the spell before?" he asked, deciding that he should try and help her figure out why she couldn't do it.
"I never needed it before," she shook her head, biting her lip a she continued pacing. "I slept at the scheduled time, so it's not that I'm tired. I had breakfast, so it's not that. I triple checked my schedules, so it's not that..."
"Why do you need it for anyways?" he asked as he grabbed a book of spells off of the shelf, after Twilight trailed into silence.
"It's just I promised the girls I would help them, but ended up promising I'd help all of them. By using the spell, I thought I'd be able to pull it off," she said remorsefully.
"I'm sure they won't be mad if you just explain-"
"A promise is a promise, Spike," she said, interrupting him softly. She felt it her responsibility to do what she promised, and trying to get out of doing favors would be against what she stood for. "They shouldn't have to settle just because I couldn't handle it all."
"What about this?" he asked as he read through a page of the book he had grabbed.
"What about what?" she asked, trotting towards him in excitement.
"There's this spell that makes a clone of yourself, so you could do that," he said, skimming over the spell. "That way there would be two Twilights to do everything you promised, instead of just one slightly more focused Twilight."
"I can't have a clone of me running through town. Think of the paradoxes!" she exclaimed.
"It says that the spell works until the clone finishes what you set out to do," he said, flipping around the book to show her. "You don't have anything to worry about sending it back to where it came from or anything."
"No, it's a reckless thing to do," she said quickly, looking away from the book to avoid any temptation. "Didn't I just tell you about paradoxes?"
"Uh, yeah," he said slowly, lowering the book.
"You do know what a paradox is, don't you?" Twilight asked, turning back to Spike to investigate him.
"Of course I do!" Spike said, clearly agitated, showing that he didn't know what the word meant.
"What is a paradox?" she asked rhetorically, grabbing a dictionary from the bookshelf with her magic, flipping it open to read the definition out loud. "A statement or proposition that, despite sounding reasonable with an acceptable premise, leads to a conclusion that seems senseless, logically unacceptable, or self-contradictory," Twilight explained, and then closed the book with a satisfied smile and placed it back on the shelf, turning away from Spike. "If I have a clone of myself running around it would cause nothing but more trouble."
"It's either this or you tell them you can't help them all," he said, making Twilight come to an abrupt stop. Spike chuckled quietly to himself. As smart as Twilight was, the one thing she hated was going back on her word.
Twilight bit her lip again, deep in thought. On one hoof, bringing in a clone could be risky. Not only does it seem like a terrible idea in general, mostly due to the fact that using the spell might make the universe implode or something equally horrible, but she felt there would be other risks as well. On the other hoof, she had promised her friends she would help, and her friends were the most important thing in the world to her. She then thought that the spell would not have been recorded if it had a chance of anything causing anything super dangerous to happen. Then again...
There was a sudden knock on the door, and Twilight's head snapped towards it in fear. Her friend had arrived.
"Twilight, are you in there?" came the voice of Rarity.
"Of course she's in there! Where else would she be?" Rainbow Dash asked with a chuckle.
Twilight grabbed the spell book with her magic and closed her eyes forcefully, thinking carefully, but quickly, about what would happen. A promise is a promise, Twilight thought to herself. She opened her eyes and quickly read the spell under her breath, horn glowing brightly. The room filled with a bright violet light, making Spike and Twilight gasp in shock as they became temporarily blinded. Their eyesight returned a few seconds later, and Twilight looked round the room. There was no double in sight.
"It didn't work," he said in a voice that was a mixture of happiness and annoyance. Happy that she wouldn't have to face any repercussions of the spell, but annoyed that she hadn't succeeded with the spell.
"Ya goin' t' let us in, or are we goin' t' stand out here all day?" Applejack asked jokingly, knocking on the door.
"You go let them in, I have to put this thing back where you found it," Twilight sighed, wondering why her magic wasn't working today.
Spike shrugged as he walked up to the door and opened it.
"Why, hello Spike," Rarity said warmly, giving Spike a small smile which made his heart skip a beat.
"Hey," Spike said dumbly, before stepping to the side to let the girls in.
"Hello girls," Twilight smiled shakily, turning to greet her friends.
"Twi, Ah think we need t' have a little chat," Applejack said, instantly seeing Twilight's state and what caused it.
"About what?" she asked, pretending not to know what Applejack was talking about.
"Ya know what Ah'm talkin' about," the farmer muttered, narrowing her eyes on Twilight. Not out of anger, but out of worry for her friend. "Look at ya. Ya promised t' help us all, and in th' end ya wound up in over your head, didn't ya?"
"Yeah," she smiled sheepishly at the farm mare for reading her so well, even if it was obvious.
Twilight looked around the room at each of her friends, but noticed Pinkie had still not entered and was standing by the door. Twilight tilted her friend and motioned inward, inviting Pinkie in. Pinkie looked back at her tail, which shot up, then down, then Pinkie's eyes started to flutter. The girls watched as this repeated a few times, knowing it to be her Pinkie sense.
"What's wrong, Pinkie?" Fluttershy asked nervously, quickly looking around the room for signs of trouble.
"I don't know," Pinkie said honestly as her eyes began to open and close repeatedly. She shook her head, making her temporarily lose connection to her Pinkie senses. "I've never had this happen before."
"Well, come inside just in case anything bad happens out there," Twilight said, motioning inwards once again, not wanting to see Pinkie come to harm.
Pinkie nodded and hopped through the doorway, and when she did the room began flashing different colors, then the sound of four men yelling, and a fifth girly scream, erupted in the center of the library. The girls began shrieking as well, matching the volume of the other yells. The girls opened their eyes and stifled their screams once they caught sight of five monsters laying in the middle of the room, squirming about and screaming.
"What are those?" Spike asked fearfully, slowly backing away.
"I-I don't know!" Twilight said quickly, going into a defensive stance, preparing a spell in case the monsters attacked.
"Dammit, Gavin!" one of the beasts yelled, still not having opened his eyes. "What did you do?"
"I didn't do anything!" one with a strange accent - Gavin - testified, trying to rub the sting out of his eyes while he lay on the floor.
"Gavin, are you lying?" one with weird markings on his arms asked as he clambered off the floor lazily, vision blurred.
"No, I'm not!" Gavin yelled defensively, not getting up due to him expecting just to get knocked back down. "I can barely open my eyes!"
"What do you guys think?" the marked one asked, turning to the blurred out blob he believed to be his happier companion. "Ray?"
"He's totally lying," another with a peppy voice, Ray, chuckled.
"Of course he is!" the angry one snapped.
"Michael, shut up and calm down," the fifth one with hair reaching down from his head to under his chin nodded, climbing to his feet and began rubbing his arm. "I think I landed on my elbow. You okay, Geoff?"
"I think so," the marked one - Geoff - nodded.
The five then began rubbing their eyes again, and now the colored mist over their eyes began to fade, allowing them to slowly get back their vision.
"They can talk?" Rarity asked in confusion.
The five stiffened at the sound of the voice.
"Who just said that?" Geoff asked. "Jack, was that you?"
"No, it wasn't me," the bearded one - Jack - muttered.
Rarity bit her lip, not liking having the monsters attention. Twilight moved towards her friends and stood in front of them, ready to defend. She wrestled with what to do next. The creatures were twice their size, but stood on their hind legs and were wearing clothing. It soon snapped in place that they had spoken the same language as her and the others, so she should start with the inquiries.
"Who are you?" Twilight asked, but her voice was shaky, both from fear and amazement.
"Who flipped the channel to the Hub?" Ray laughed, eyes still closed.
"We don't have cable in here..." Jack muttered, taking off his glasses to clean them.
"Okay, now I'm sure our stuff messed up," Geoff sighed. "Who's going to be the one to tell Burnie, because I'm totally not doing it."
"Who are you?" she asked again, more firmly this time, and saw the one named Michael was staring at her with a look of confusion.
"Just out of curiosity, are we dead?" he asked Twilight, now giving her a look of astonishment.
"What? No, you're alive," Twilight said slowly, now advancing towards them. If they had meant to attack, they surely would have by now.
"Dude..." his jaw dropped after having interacted with the purple unicorn. His eyes grew bright and he turned to Ray.
"No..." Ray muttered in return, turning to Michael with the same expression.
"Seriously?" Jack asked, putting his glasses back on to look around. "What are you two-"
He almost jumped back after he stopped mid-sentence when he put on his glasses to look at where they were. The colors were vibrant, almost painfully so. But it wasn't the colors that made him nearly stumble, it was the fact that in front of him stood half a dozen small horses. Panic set in, he looked over to the now not-so-angry Michael and the even happier Ray, who were both positively beaming, then back to the ponies. From the pair's excitement he knew exactly where he was. He didn't know how and he didn't know why.
This is just a dream, He thought to himself, trying to calm down. He looked over at Geoff, who was giving him the same look of uncertainty. Now how the hell do I wake up?
"Where are we?" Gavin sputtered as he jumped to his feet, looking around the room in a panic. Though they were all technically foreign, they knew that he was not from where the other four were from.
"Equestria!" The pair that were standing next to each other yelled together, pounding their fists together triumphantly.
"This is unbelievable," Michael said with almost childlike excitement. "Is this real? I mean, I know it's fucking impossible, but how cool would it be if this was real?"
"I can pinch you if you want," Gavin said, walking towards Michael to harass him.
"Touch me and your face will go through a wall," he growled, stepping away from the oncoming Gavin.
"Aw, you're no fun," Gavin mumbled, but kept the smile on his face.
"What the hell are you so happy about anyways? I know why I'm happy. I know why Ray is happy," Michael said, then gasped. "Oh, right, you're an idiot."
While they were arguing, Twilight grabbed the spell book with her magic, eyes lingering on the strange beings. She flipped open the book and quickly looked down to read the spell she had used, and instantly her face turned ashen.
"What's wrong?" Rarity asked, stepping closer to Twilight now that the one known as Michael was walking towards the one known as Gavin with an item known as a chair.
"Spike, didn't you read the spell at all?" she hissed, but not out of anger, but out of worry.
"I skimmed it," he said guiltily, watching the violent Michael feign swinging the chair.
"It doesn't say anything about a clone in here," she said, turning the book to show him. "It specifically-"
"You tried to clone yourself?" Pinkie Pie piped curiously, making Twilight stop talking. "Then I would have had to give you a double birthday!"
"This wouldn't have anything to do with you trying to help us all, would it?" Rarity asked, then sighed when Twilight looked away sheepishly. "Twilight, darling, you know you didn't have to do that."
"That's actually why we came here together," Applejack said quietly, but she kept her gaze on the guys while she talked. "We wanted t' tell ya-"
"Gavin, I swear if you touch me I'll break your fingers," Michael said snappishly when Gavin tried to touch Michael.
"Can somebody pinch me?" Jack asked, staring at his hands as if they weren't real. "Because I want the hell out of this nightmare."
"I'll do it," Gavin said quickly, running up to Jack. He reached for his arm to pinch him, then slapped him in the face.
"Dammit!" he snapped. Not because it hurt, but because he had nobody to blame but himself for that one. Jack rubbed his face and looked around the room. "But... how..."
"We'll talk later," Twilight said to her friends, shifting all attention to the aliens. "We have something more pressing to attend to."
They seemed dangerous, but only seemed interested in hurting each other, bar the one named Ray, who was the only one not yelling. Twilight believed that one to be their leader.
"What are these things?" Fluttershy asked quietly, hunched down on the ground, slowly making her way to the door, making Twilight turn her watchful eye to her friend before she could call Ray over.
"Hey, we're not going to hurt you," Michael said quickly, rushing towards Fluttershy to make peace with her. "Look, my name is-"
"Don't touch her," Rainbow Dash snapped, flying in front of Michael, pushing him away from her.
"Ow!" he yelped, landing on his ass. Rubbing his numb cheeks, he glared up at the brightly colored horse. "What did you do that for? I wasn't going to hurt her."
"Sure you weren't," she growled back, not budging from her spot.
"Why the hell aren't I awake?" Geoff asked, staring at the ceiling. "Gavin, did you give us some sketchy ass British drugs?"
"No, I didn't," Gavin said quietly. "There are an awful lot of ponies here..."
"No kidding," Jack muttered, scratching his beard nervously. "How did we get here?"
"Burnie probably got mad at us for yelling, so he put funny gas in the room and now we're tripping balls." Geoff said reasonably.
"When I wake up I'll have to ask him where he got it. This is a hell of a trip," Ray said, helping Michael off the floor. "But while we're doped up, we might as well make the best of the situation..."
Applejack tensed up when Ray started approaching her. She believed he was coming at her to attack her, but stared at him warily. Suddenly, Ray's hand shot out, and Applejack turned her head to the side, expecting to get hit. But nothing happened. She waited a few more seconds, before looking out to see Ray's hand still extended, warm smile on his face.
"My name is Ray," He said with a pleasant smile, trying to sound as in non-intimidating as possible.
Applejack looked from his face, down to his hand.
"Come on, I know you know how to shake," he chuckled, wiggling his fingers at her in a playful manner.
Applejack smiled curiously at Twilight, wondering what to do. Twilight gazed at Ray and saw no ill intentions, so she nodded. Applejack's smile became more genuine as she clasped Ray's hand and began to shake. Ray let out a pained gasp when Applejack crushed his hand.
"Sorry!" she said quickly.
"My fault. That was my fault," he insisted, painful expression on his face. He started massaging his injury with his healthy hand. "Probably should have saw that coming..."
"So... what are ya?" she asked, helping Ray to his feet.
"Me? Oh, I'm- I mean we're humans," he said, waving to the others.
"Ray, what have I told you about talking to hallucinations in the workplace?" Geoff asked snappishly, believing them to still be at the Rooster Teeth offices.
"Nothing," he said with his patented sarcastic straight face, raising an eyebrow at Geoff.
"Oh, sorry for bothering you then," Geoff smiled, making Ray feel extremely uncomfortable. Might as well lose my sanity now, rather than later.
"What's a human?" Twilight asked, stepping back into the reigns.
"I'm a human. We've been over this," Ray said simply, then chuckled when Twilight adorned a small frown. "Though I suppose you want to know where I'm from, not what I am, right?"
"Yes," she said with a hesitant nod.
"Yeah, I figured," he said, waving Michael over to him as he pondered on what to tell her. He decided for now he would tell her the basics. "This fine gentleman here is Michael, the one who talks funny and is hitting the one with the beard is Gavin, the one who's scratching his beard is Jack, and the one going crazy over there with the tattoos is Geoff. We're from planet Earth. Well, I'm pretty sure this place is called Earth too, but we're from a different one."
"Uh-huh," Twilight nodded. She wanted to press harder to get more specific answers, but felt that since he was being nice enough to answer the questions freely, that she should make the environment more suitable for conversation. "Please, take a seat at my table. Spike, go get a few glasses of water for them."
"Uh, alright," the dragon nodded, disappearing into the kitchen.
"Thanks," Michael said, being the first to sit on one of the chairs. When he did, he nearly slipped off. "Damn, these chairs are small."
"Man, this is so damn strange..." Ray muttered.
"What about the others?" Twilight asked, looking at the other three.
Jack was standing there, pinching his arms in an attempt to wake up. Gavin was annoying Jack, trying to help him wake up in his own way by pulling on his beard. Geoff was staring at his watch with a lucrative smile, waiting for his sanity to drain away.
"They're fine," Ray chuckled dismissively, sitting down next to Michael.
"What are you wearing?" Rarity asked, more afraid of their fashion sense than she was of them.
"Rarity, this isn't the time," Twilight hushed her, before turning her attention back to Ray. "Now, you were saying?"
"Oh, I'm wearing-"
"Not Rarity's question," she sighed. "The continuation of your prior answer is what I was hoping for."
"That this is strange?"
"No. Well, yes. Yes and no," she said, growing flustered. "Can you explain what happened before you ended up here?"
"We were sitting around playing a video game, then the room filled with a purplish kind of light," he said, making odd motions with his hands. "Then a few seconds after that-"
"-the room filled with a flash of multiple different colors. That's what I thought," she finished, looking at the other three guys. "Were you doing anything magical before you came here?"
"No, there's no such thing as magic where we're from," Michael said, shaking his head. "It sucks."
"Oh," she muttered. She looked at the other three once again. "Your friends seem to be a little..."
"I know. Don't worry, they're not always like this," Ray said with a laugh. "I like to believe I'm the only one with an open mind, so I'm able to deal with this a bit more reasonably."
"Hey!" Michael said, pretending to be hurt.
"Actually, it really just hasn't hit me where I am yet, so there's that too. Though I can't exactly see how we got here, so I'm leaning more to Geoff's theory of us being drugged," Ray said, nodding slowly. "Being drugged would probably explain why I'm not freaking out right now..."
"About that," Twilight said quietly, feeling slightly embarrassed about the whole thing, when Spike walked in with a plate holding nearly half a dozen glasses.
"Thanks," Ray said, grabbing a glass of water to sip out of while they talked.
Michael grabbed a glass of water as well, and drank it in one swig, before letting out a loud belch. He covered his mouth and gave the ponies an apologetic look.
"So, can you send us back home now?" Jack asked impatiently, waving away Spike, figuring rather than question it and risk going crazy, he would just try to forget about the whole thing.
"That's what I was about to tell you before Spike walked in," Twilight said. Taking a deep breath, her gaze lingering on each of them for several seconds, before finally looking at Ray. "I can't send you back."
"Wait, what do you mean you can't send us back?" Gavin asked, putting both his arms on Michael's head, using him as a rest, until Michael swatted him off. "You brought us here, so you should be able to send us back."
"It's not as simple as that," she sighed, wishing magic was that easy. She grabbed the spell book and opened it to the spell she had used and began reading from it. "The spell states that you can only go home once you complete the tasks I had summoned you here to help with."
"So we can't go home until we help you guys?" Geoff asked, slowly accepting the situation. Yup, I'm officially insane.
"Correct," Twilight nodded grimly.
"So we're fucked, great," he said, clasping his hands together, about to call shotgun for the train to Insanityville.
"Okay, so assuming we really are here, which I'm still having trouble even beginning to think is real-" Jack started.
"It is real," Twilight assured him.
"Please, just... just let my mind go the shitter like Geoff's on it's own terms, okay?" he asked, closing his eyes to try and keep his mind clear. "So assuming this is real, I don't want to spend too much time here to help you little horses out."
Applejack gave him a glare and opened her mouth to argue.
"No offense to you or your funny little hat, of course," he said dismissively. "Now please, think as hard as you can in that imaginary, purple-horned brain of yours. Are you sure there is absolutely no way out of here without having to help you?"
"Hey, I kind of want to stay here for an hour or two," Michael whined.
"Please, just be quiet while the adults talk," Jack said, not caring for the others inputs, before turning back to Twilight with a pleading look. "Think of anything?"
"There may be one way," Twilight said slowly, shrugging off his passive insult, knowing by imaginary, he simply meant that he still believed her to be a hallucination.
"Oh thank god," Geoff gulped, grabbing onto his head. "Almost crossed the border there."
"Great!" Jack said, breathing a heavy sigh of relief. "What is it?"
"Spike?" Twilight asked, not answering Jack's question.
"Yeah?" he answered, placing the tray on the table.
"Go grab the quill, I need you to take a letter."
Spike nodded and sprinted up the stairs, only to return a few seconds later with a long feather, with an even longer sheet off paper. Jack stared at her, wondering what was going on. Michael and Ray, however, knew what she was doing, and stared silently at her.
"We need to inform Princess Celestia."
"...Your faithful student, Twilight Sparkle," said faithful student finished after explaining the situation to Spike.
"Done and... done," Spike said as he dotted the parchment. "Want me to read it over?"
"Not this time," she shook her head, and instantly the piece of paper went up in a green flame. She turned around and saw Michael and Ray's eyes glazed over with excitement. "Are you two okay?"
"That was way cooler than I expected," Michael said happily, holding up his fist to Ray.
"I know!" he laughed, hitting Michael's fist with his own.
"Oookaaay," Twilight said, shifting her eyes to the other three. "Now, I'm not sure when Celestia will reply to that letter, but when she does, you need to treat her with-" Twilight began, and the five guys were instantly enveloped in a golden flash. Twilight shielded her eyes, shocked by the sudden burst of light, and when she looked back up the guys were gone. "-respect."
"She's going to kill us!" Geoff yelled when he felt himself lifted off the ground by a strange force, knowing he was no longer where he was standing several seconds ago. "Run for your lives!"
"Why does that sound so familiar?" Michael asked jokingly, but his voice was anything but joyful.
The light, amber fog soon settled and the five very confused men quickly took in their surroundings. They were in a large room, possibly forty feet tall. The walls had many stained glass windows, with a column that reached the ceiling on either side of each one. They looked down and saw they were standing on a light red carpet. On one end of the carpet, there was a doorway, and on the other was many things. They instantly noticed a pair of stallions, eyeing them cautiously. Behind them was a ramp that led to a fountain that poured off the side. And there was another ramp atop the fountain that led to a throne, where a large, white, winged unicorn sat, hair flowing regally, giving the sensation that there was a breeze, but there were none. The pony and the men stared at each other for a good few minutes, waiting for the other party to speak.
"Princess Celestia," Michael stuttered. He knew she was nice, but her position gave her the look of a ruthless leader, looking down upon them.
"You know who I am," she said with a curt nod, smile at the corners of her mouth. "This is good."
"Yeah. So what's with her hair?" Geoff asked curiously, almost hypnotized by the way it flicked about.
"Dude, she's magic, she doesn't have to explain jack shit!" Michael snapped, not wanting Geoff to offend the ruler of the day.
"Explain me what?" Jack asked, turning to Michael.
"I wasn't talking about you."
"But you said my name." Jack said quietly, raising an eyebrow to Michael.
"I know, but-"
"Peace," Celestia said, and though she said it quietly, it sounded as if she the whole world could have heard it. "I would appreciate it if you held your hostilities at bay. What are your names?"
"My name is Michael."
"My name is Gavin."
"And I'm Geoff."
"It is a pleasure to meet you all," Celestia said, bowing her head. "Now, it is to my understanding that Twilight summoned you here?"
"Yeah, it looks like she promised the other five that she'd help them do some stuff, then she ended up dragging us here." Ray shrugged helplessly.
"Twilight always did take her lessons seriously," she said with a small, friendly smile. "What I don't understand is how she brought you here. Twilight isn't one to mistake one spell for another, especially seeing as it's her special talent, and she wouldn't knowingly summon strangers from other worlds."
"Yeah, a lot of people from where we're from seem to think she can though..." Michael sighed, rubbing the back of his neck.
"Dude," Ray hissed, hitting Michael in the gut.
"Ray, what the fuck?" Michael yelled, clutching onto his ribs. "What did you do that for?"
"You know of Twilight Sparkle?" Celestia asked before Ray could answer, eyes growing wide with intrigue. "Tell me how you know about her."
"We were sitting down, making a video," Gavin said, trying to explain in his own words. "Then, out of nowhere, some purple lightning happened, then some rainbow lightning happened, then we-"
"For the last time, it wasn't lightning, Gavin!" Michael bellowed.
"Then what was it?" he asked.
"Well that's just a load of gaff."
"It's not gaff. You heard Twilight," Michael groaned, rubbing his forehead.
"Do you guys think it's gaff?" Gavin asked, turning to the others.
"Sounds pretty gaffy to me," Geoff shrugged.
"Yeah, I was going to say..." Jack sighed.
"You tried to wake yourself up and you couldn't, what more proof do you need?" Michael asked, waving his hands at Celestia, then realized he hadn't answered her question. "Anyways, that's how we know her. She brought us here and she told us her name."
"I cannot read minds, but I know when one is lying. I would appreciate the whole truth," she said, narrowing her eyes at Michael.
"Are you sure?" Ray asked when Michael turned away. "I mean, this sort of thing seems like it wouldn't go over so well."
"I've been alive for a long time, and I have heard many things," she said modestly. "Little would phase me."
"You say that now, but-"
"While time isn't of the essence, I would rather you not beat around the bush," she smiled pleasantly.
"Alright, you asked for it. Where we're from, you're not real," he said, pausing to think of what to say.
"You and the other ponies are from a show called My Little Pony: Friendship is magic," Geoff said flatly after gathering himself.
"Interesting," she said before nodding at them to continue.
"Basically, we know about you, how Luna used to be Nightmare Moon, the Element of Harmony, the time Discord came back, the Royal Wedding..." Michael said, counting off the biggest things on his fingers.
"How Fluttershy is worst pony..." Ray coughed into his fist.
"Ray, don't start with me..." Michael warned him, clenching his fingers together as he closed his eyes to count to ten.
"But yeah, a few of us watch the show to pass the time. Everything else is just details."
"Are the girls aware?" she asked after considering what they had said.
"No," Michael shook his head. "We didn't really have the time to tell them."
"Good. I would appreciate it if you kept it that way," she nodded. "Like your friend Ray said, that isn't the sort of information you would give somepony if you want to keep them sane."
"They probably wouldn't believe it anyways," Gavin smiled, looking at Michael.
"Probably not," she agreed, looking out the window, considering her options. "But it's best to play it safe."
"So can you send us back?" Geoff asked.
"No?" Geoff echoed. "Aren't you supposed to be some sort of god? I mean, you raise the sun..."
"You watch it too?" Michael asked, surprised.
"I know the basics seeing as you two are always talking about it..." he shrugged listlessly, focusing mostly on Celestia. "So why can't you send us back? You're clearly powerful enough to bring us here from Twilight's house, and your power extends far enough to the sun."
"Because my power pales in comparison to that of the Elements," Celestia sighed, looking back to the others.
"What about them? Wasn't it just Twilight that did it?" Ray asked.
"Well if the lightning Gavin brought up was of any significance, then they have everything to do with it. I believe the first purple flash was Twilight establishing a connection to your worlds, but it wasn't until the Elements of Harmony were gathered that the spell actually had enough power to bring you over."
"That makes sense," Geoff nodded slowly. He then shook his head at himself. "What am I talking about? None of this really makes sense. You guys are a television show. How the hell did you bring us here?"
"Where you are from, we're a show. But here we are real," she shrugged playfully, not fully understanding the situation herself. "That's the only real reason I can provide besides magic, or you all going insane. You'll all just have to keep an open mind about it."
"Fair enough," Jack muttered. "So you can't put us back, I can't wake up, and Geoff is no longer biting himself. There's some ups and downs. But now what?"
"I send you back to Twilight and the others. If what Twlight told me is correct, then you can't go back until you help her friends achieve their goals."
"But that could take days. Maybe even weeks," Gavin said, scratching his head. "We're probably going to get fired if we take that long."
"Yeah, then you'll get deported back to England. I'm not seeing the downside here," Michael chuckled.
"It may take that long, but I'm afraid you've no other choice," she stated matter-of-factly. "You will have to try your best to fit in around Ponyville. They may fear you at first, but the citizens of Ponyville are tolerant to a lot."
"Are you going to turn us into ponies?" Michael asked quickly.
"I am almost certain that the sudden transformation would fatally injure you," Celestia said with almost brutal honesty.
"Be alive or be a dead pony?" Michael asked himself, lightly biting his lip. He looked to Gavin, then to Celestia again. "Touch choice."
"I hope you're joking," Geoff murmured.
"You're right. We should try it on Gavin first," he said as he ran behind Gavin and pushed him closer to Celestia.
"You berk!" Gavin sputtered frightfully as he fell to the ground. "I don't want to be a pony, let alone a dead one!"
"Peace, Gavin. Peace, Michael. I told you I want no fighting in my sister and I's home," she stated calmly, using her magic to pick Gavin up off the floor. "Now, I'm certain none of you are overtly violent, so I do not have to tell you to not hurt anypony, so I suppose I should send you to Twilight."
"Wait, where will we be-" Ray began, when him and the others became surrounded in Celestia's mist, just to reappear back in Twilight's library. "-staying..."
"She couldn't send you home?" Twilight asked rhetorically, already knowing the asnwer.
"Nope, the Elements of Harmony are what's keeping us here," he sighed, sitting down on the chair he had sat on prior to disappearing.
"She told you about the Elements?" Rarity gasped, not expecting the Princess to be one to give out information such as that.
"Sure, let's go with that," Michael laughed nervously. "So what should we do now?"
"Did Celestia tell you where you will be staying?" Twilight asked, to which Ray responded to with a quick shake of his head. "Then our first priority should be finding you all a place to stay, I suppose." Twilight said quietly. Knowing she had no room, she turned to the others to ask them.
"Ya'll can stay with me," Applejack said grudgingly, but not out of fear or spite, but out of inconvenience.
"I am so down," Ray boomed, clapping his hands together.
"You would be," Michael muddled, trudging after Ray.
"Alright, I think I can accept this for a little bit, just as long as I don't linger on how we can't get back for a while," Jack sighed, patting Geoff on the back. "You still on the fence about being crazy?"
"Nah, I think I'm good," Geoff said, giving his best smile under the circumstances. He stopped smiling and turned to Michael. "Hey, do they have any beer here?"
"Not that I know of," Michael said.
"Dammit," he kicked the ground. "That will make things a little harder," He raised his brow and turned to Gavin, who was still smiling. "Why are you so happy though."
"I don't know, this place just seems nice," Gavin admitted with a smile.
"Come on ya'll, we need t' run it by Granny Smith an' make sure she has no qualms with ya livin' in our barn," Applejack said, pushing the door open, before turning around and tipping her hat to the girls. "See ya girls later."
Jack, Geoff and Gavin instantly began following the orange farm pony, having to duck underneath the short door, while Michael and Ray hung back for a few moments.
"Guys, hurry up!" Geoff said loudly from outside.
"What a buzz-kill," Michael muttered sourly as he ducked out the door.
"Well, it was nice meeting you all, and I can't wait to get to know each and everyone of you," Ray bowed, before running out the door to catch up with the others.
Twilight looked at her remaining four friends and smiled. "Well?"
"Well what?" Rainbow Dash asked dubiously.
"They don't seem so bad, right?"
"I guess," Rainbow Dash chuckled. "One thing I know for sure is that none of them could beat me in a race."
"Their clothes aren't top quality, but they didn't seem too bad," Rarity smiled lazily, wondering how they'd feel about her clothing.
"I know! Gavin looked like a funny guy," Pinkie said, before scratching her chin. "I wonder, why the others seemed to treat him like meany-pantseses?"
"Different world, different customs I suppose," Twilight shrugged, turning to Fluttershy. "What do you think?"
"They seem... nice," Fluttershy said, forcing a weak smile.
"This is going to be so fucking rad!"
"Hey Applejack, hold up," Ray said, jogging to keep up with the strong-legged pony as she began trotting to Sweet Apple Acres. "Do you think we should duck through town a bit? You know, until this situation is actually explained a little bit more?"
"Good point," she grimaced as she thought of how to go about not raising suspicion. She smiled and nodded at the boys. "Ya'll wait here. Ah'll run up ahead and wave you over when Ah'm sure the coast is clear. And, uh, Michael?"
"What?" he asked.
"Try not t' yell again," Applejack smirked before trotting ahead.
Michael swore under his breath and looked at the others while Ray watched for Applejack's signal. Jack and Geoff were now more relaxed. While they still shifted around uncomfortably, they had their bearings and no longer thought they were insane, or at least felt no need to acknowledge it out loud. Gavin was looking at the clouds drifting by, smiling at them as they moved by slowly.
"Come on," Ray said, snapping the others back to whatever small reality they were now in.
The others quickly jogged towards Applejack, who was peaking around the corner of one of the buildings in Ponyville. She turned back to them and nodded, telling them to stay put. After a few seconds, Applejack waved them up again. The guys looked around and ran up to her, only this time she didn't nod.
"There are some ponies 'round th' corner, just gimme a minute t' distract 'em," Applejack said in a hushed voice.
"But you're the Element of Honesty right? I mean, you aren't exactly the best at lying..." Ray said quietly.
"How'd ya know that?"
"Celestia told us about the Elements, remember?"
"Ah know that. Ah mean how do ya know Ah'm no good at lyin'?"
"Uh, Celestia told me," he said quietly, remembering the sun princess's request not to tell them the truth.
"Ah, right. Ah guess Ah shoulda figured she'd want t' give ya a little knowledge about us," she said, accepting his lie. Besides the fact she was an alien, he was nice. She had no reason to doubt him. She then nodded at them and turned around and looked at the building across the dirt road. Sugar Cube Corner. "Y'see that store up there?"
"You mean Su-" Michael coughed, trying not to let anything besides their names slip. "-that bakery?"
"Yeah. Ah need ya t' listen closely. When Ah talk to th' ponies over there, ya'll will need to run behind there."
"Got it," Ray said and Applejack instantly vanished, and they listened closely for Applejack to speak.
They heard the quiet sound of Applejack greeting the ponies and they sprinted across the road, slamming their backs against Sugar Cube Corner.
"Gives me an idea for a game," Geoff chuckled. "Splinter Cell: Ponytown."
"Ponyville," Michael said in annoyance.
"It's my idea, I'll call it what I want."
"Your idea is wrong."
"Your face is wrong," Geoff muttered.
"Guys, shut up or you'll blow our cover," Ray whispered.
"Pft, you're not the boss of me," Geoff grunted, then smiled. "Actually, I'm the boss of you."
"I know," he rolled his eyes. "I was just saying..."
Geoff sighed and nodded, falling quiet. Applejack ran around the corner and checked behind her to make sure she wasn't followed. With a revived sigh she turned around and smiled at them. Jack rolled his eyes and looked away.
"Sorry 'bout the wait," Applejack said quietly, walking ahead of them. "The rest of th' way should be clear, so we should be able t' get there without sneakin' around like a couple of snakes in the grass."
"Where's the fun in that?" Gavin asked.
"Shut up," Micheal moaned.
"Do ya mind tryin' t' be a lil nicer?" she asked coldly, glaring darts at Michael.
"Mind your own business," he smiled thinly.
"Play nice," Ray said, hitting Michael lightly on the back of the head. He smiled at Applejack. "So the rest of the way should be clear?" Applejack nodded. "Great, lead the way. We'll keep up."
Applejack nodded again and began trotting down one of the smaller paths. They looked at each other, shrugged again, then set off after her. Applejack kept a light trot, not wanting to push the guys to their limits since she does not know their limits. Within ten minutes of jogging they arrived at Sweet Apple Acres and went through the front gate.
"Hold up," Jack panted, putting his hand on one of the poles of the gate to catch a breath.
"Y'alright?" Applejack asked sincerely, trotting up to Jack.
"Don't worry about him, he's alright, he's used to sneaking around towns in broad daylight filled with multicolored ponies," Gavin laughed as he began walking briskly towards the Apple family's home.
"I'm good," Jack said when Applejack kept watching him. He straightened up and rubbed the small of his back, before tilting his head to the side. "We should probably catch up with him before he breaks something in your house."
"Sounds good," she chuckled, before squinting at Geoff who was holding something in his hand. "What's that?"
"It's my wallet," he said unenthusiastically. With a reluctant sigh, he flipped the wallet shut and placed it back in his pocket. "Do you have any beer here?"
"What's a beer?" she asked seriously.
"As if this couldn't get any worse," Geoff groaned, before shrugging at the mare. "Just as well, pretty sure this place doesn't take mastercard."
"Just forget about it or we'll be at this all night," Ray said calmly as they reached the door to the farm house.
"That's probably true. Wait out here. Ah need t' go..." she trailed off, trying to find a nice way to say it.
"Warn them?" he asked with a small laugh.
"Yeah," she said, meeting Ray's chuckle. "No offense of course..."
"Yeah, I assume five to six and a half foot tall almost hairless apes isn't a natural thing to see around here," Jack said, leaning up against the farmhouse.
"It certainly ain't," she laughed nervously before vanishing through the door. "Be right back."
The guys glanced at each other and sighed, each either sitting down or leaning against something while they waited for her to return.
"She seems nice," Jack said quietly after a minute of sitting in silence.
"Under the circumstances, yeah." Geoff agreed, then laid his back on the grass as he began rubbing his face. "I can't believe this shit is happening. This defies all laws of physics."
"What do you know about physics?" Jack laughed.
"Good point," Geoff shrugged.
"Why is it so hot?" Gavin asked, fanning his head with his hand.
"Because Celestia hates you the most, right Ray?" Michael asked. Ray didn't answer, so Michael turned around to look at him.
Ray was staring out into the orchard, smiling brightly at the trees, taking in the atmosphere. He liked it hear. The smell of the clean air made him feel light on his feet. The door to the house swung open and Applejack walked out and nodded at them.
"So, did you explain to the others?" Ray asked.
"Yeah. Ah think they think ah'm crazy, though," she sighed, turning her head back to face the open door. "C'mon out."
A large, red stallion stepped out the door, and instantly his jaw dropped. He lowered himself, not out of fear, but in defense.
"Easy there, BM. They may look strange, but-"
"You look strange," Gavin huffed.
"-but they're not that bad," she said, unimpressed by Gavin's small outburst. "They won't hurt us, and they need our help gettin' home by helpin' us at ours. Ah told ya that the Elements did this, so this is their only way."
Big Mac nodded slowly and eased up, but continued eyeing the giants warily. He then turned to face the inside and whistled sharply. A woof came from the inside and a small dog sprinted outside, barking nervously at the strangers, while a small, yellow filly with a bow tie in her hair slowly came outside, before freezing in the doorway in fear.
"Oh my god, she is adorable!" Ray yelled. He ran up to her and picked her up, smiling brightly. "Look how badass the big bow is!"
"L-let go of me!" the filly shrieked, thinking the monster was going to eat her. "Big Macintosh, sis, help!"
"Oh sh- sorry," he said hastily, quickly putting the filly on the ground. Applebloom galloped away and hid behind Big Mac, trembling as she watched Ray, making sure he didn't chase after her.
"Well that was a good first impression," Gavin chuckled.
"Dude, even I found that a little weird," Michael laughed, patting a saddened Ray on the back.
"It's alright. These are the guys Ah was tellin' ya'll about," Applejack said slowly, but smiling while she said it, calming Applebloom down. She turned to Ray and raised her brow.
"Didn't mean to scare you like that," Ray muttered honestly. "I just, uh... sorry."
"T-they're taller than ya said," Applebloom squeaked in a small, distant voice.
"I know, just..." Applejack trailed off. She'll have to talk to her more, so she looked to her brother for help. "Big Mac, show 'em where they'll be sleepin' while Ah talk t' Applebloom."
Big Mac nodded and motioned his head towards the barn, telling the guys to follow him. The guys looked at him, sighed, then got up to follow him. Having to do real work soured their mood a bit.
"You don't talk much, do you?" Jack asked, looking at Big Mac's blank expression.
Big Mac shook his head and began walking toward the barn.
"Yeah, we'll get along just fine," he sighed, walking after the large stallion.
Jack and the others stayed quiet as Big Mac lead them to the barn. Big Mac pulled open the large, red door and walked inside, leaving the guys outside on their own.
"Seems a tad poxy, doesn't it?" Gavin asked when he saw how the paint was peeling off the barn door.
"Does that mean run down piece of shit?" Michael asked calmly. Gavin nodded. "Then yes."
"Hey, we're guests here," Ray said in an angry tone. "You don't disrespect someone when they're letting you stay at their place."
"You do when the place you're sleeping is a dump,," Michael chortled.
"Let's just go inside, because this is as good as it's going to get," Geoff muttered, bumping Michael out of the way to go inside.
"Sure thing boss," Ray smirked, following him inside.
"Come on you two, as long as the thing doesn't fall down on us we should be fine," Jack sighed, pushing Gavin and Michael ahead of him.
Big Mac was standing in the middle of the barn as the guys walked inside, so they gathered around him and waited for him to talk. After two minutes, Jack coughed into his fist and elbowed Ray in the side.
"Where are we sleeping?" Ray asked, looking around the barn for anything they could sleep on. There were no beds and no cots. All there was were multiple piles of hay. Ray sighed. "We're sleeping on hay, aren't we?"
"Eeyup," Big Mac smiled falteringly.
"Could be worse," Michael said as he jumped on one of the larger piles of hay. "Dibs on this one."
"I wanted that one," Gavin said sadly.
"Too bad. You know the rules of dibs," he chuckled as he laid down in the hay.
"No time for restin' now," Big Mac said, voice strained. "Ya'll are here t' work, right?"
"Right," they said hesitantly.
"Then let's get goin'," Big Mac muttered, walking back outside.
Michael sighed and got off the hay and followed the others outside. Ray looked out at the orchard, but this time he really stared at the orchard, and his smile vanished in an instant when he saw Big Mac walking towards the trees.
"Fuck," Ray muttered.
"What's wrong?" Gavin asked, looking around nervously.
"Guys, I think we're in over our heads," he said quietly, face washed over with a look of nervousness.
"What do you mean?" Jack asked, looking at Ray curiously. "What can these small ponies do that we can't do?"
"Fly and use magic," Michael said.
"Besides that." Jack said, rolling his eyes.
"Well, the Apple family aren't exactly the richest, and they don't really have any electrical technology around here for us to help them with."
"And?" Geoff asked.
"And that means we're going to have to do physical labor."
The five men fell silent for several minutes, feeling nothing but despair as they stared at the ground.
"Fuck," they muttered in unison.
"Hey Big Guy, wait up." Geoff said quickly as he scrambled after the large workhorse, who was at the moment nearing the orchard.
Big Mac continued, but turned his head to the side, acknowledging Geoff.
"Hey, uh, so..." the man grumbled, trying to find a polite way to put it. "Are we just going to be picking apples all day?"
"Nnnope," Big Mac shook his head.
"Oh thank god," he let out a sigh of relief, then turned and smiled at the others. "Good news guys, we aren't going to be picking apples."
Jack and Gavin smiled at each other gratefully, but Ray and Michael knew better. They shared an uneasy glance with each other, already expecting that they weren't going to be picking apples, sad that their guesses were on the nose.
"What's wrong with you two?" Geoff asked curiously. "I thought you guys would be happy to hear you wouldn't be doing any work. I mean, that's pretty much the norm for you guys anyways, right?"
"Ah never said ya wouldn't do any work," Big Mac said quietly as he walked up to the nearest tree.
"Soooo, what then?" Jack inquired edgily as Big Mac turned around to look at them.
"Ya'll will be apple buckin'," he said passively.
"What the heck is apple bucking?" Gavin asked.
Big Mac lifted his hind legs into the air, then swiftly kicked the tree with both legs at the same time. The gang gawked at the tree as it began began shaking violently from the blow, and dozens of apples fell from the tree, landing softly on the grass below.
"You're fucking kidding, right?" Geoff pleaded, staring at his foot. "There's no way we can do that!"
Big Mac shrugged and went over to the next tree and kicked it, once again knocking all the apples down. The guys stared at each other, nodded, then began walking away. Except for Ray. He walked up to one of the trees that hadn't been kicked and began examining it.
"Don't tell me you're actually thinking about doing it," Jack shook his head in a disappointed manner.
"Pretty sure you don't want to be stuck here," Ray said as he stared at him, then turned back to the tree.
"Unless I'm hallucinating, I'm pretty sure that tree is made out of wood, and that red guy kicked it to make the apples fall," Geoff muttered.
"Yup," he said as he tapped his fist on the tree. "It's wood."
"Funny," Geoff rolled his eyes.
"C'mon guys, we need to do this to get home..." he insisted, waving at the bark.
"God dammit," Jack sighed.
"Yeah. It can't be that hard, right?" Michael asked, now walking towards the tree, clenching his fingers together.
"Wait, Michael don't do-"
Michael punched the tree, then squealed in pain as he heard a crunch. He cursed loudly, waving his hand around in an attempt to rid himself of the pain. Gavin shook his head playfully, happy to see Michael on the receiving end for once.
"I think I fucking broke my hand!" Michael hissed in anger.
"Matches your broken face," Gavin chuckled slyly.
"Shut the fuck up, Gavin," Michael growled, then stuck his fingers in his mouth.
"Both of you be quiet," Ray said quietly, then turned to see Big Mac who was currently kicking his eighth tree. "Hey big guy, can you come over here for a sec?"
Big Mac nodded and slowly made his way over to Ray, waiting for him to speak.
"Now obviously when you were young you couldn't just kick trees straight away. You had to develop the skill over time, right?" Ray asked and Big Mac nodded. "Right, so how did you learn to do it without breaking your hooves?"
Big Mac walked up to the tree and began hitting the tree with his right hoof, testing it. After a few seconds of doing that he smiled at the tree and picked at the tree, chipping away at the bark. Once there was a noticeable chunk missing out of the tree he backed away and nodded.
"So it's basically like a weak point of the tree?" Geoff asked and Big Mac nodded again. "Right, well I don't think any of us are strong enough to do that."
Big Mac looked at them and squinted at their arms, noticing how they had next to no muscle on them. He shook his head and went back to the tree, continuing to look for the weakest parts of the trunk. After a few minutes he had found five weak points and he walked next to Ray.
"Thanks," he sighed, wondering what to do next.
"Okay guys, listen up," Geoff said, clapping his hands together once. "Everyone take one of the weak points and move ten feet away from it. On the count of three we all run at it, jump and kick, got it?"
"No," Jack and Michael grunted.
"Too bad," Geoff muttered, pushing them towards the tree. "If we have to do this, Ray and I aren't doing it alone."
"What about me?" Gavin asked.
"You're weaker than all of us so you wouldn't make much of a difference," Geoff shrugged.
"Oh, I'm okay with that," Gavin chuckled and began walking towards another tree so he could watch them.
"Every little bit helps, Ah always say," Big Mac coughed.
"Man- er, stallion's got a point," Geoff sighed. "C'mon Gav."
"Are we getting paid overtime for this?" Michael asked curiously.
"Shut up and take a damn point."
The guys soon surrounded the tree, each one ten feet away from it. They shared an uneasy glance with each other, and then watched Geoff, waiting for his mark.
"One,"he said and all of them touched the ground, staring dead ahead at the tree.
"Gavin you better kick it," Jack said sternly.
"Two," Geoff said, feeling the grass with his feet, making sure it would be comfy enough for him to cry in pain on.
"I will," Gavin nodded seriously.
"Three!" Geoff yelled and the guys charged towards the towering apple tree.
"This is going to suck!" Michael yelled as they all jumped in the air.
As they were in the air, the guys extended their legs and kicked the points that Big Mac had marked. The sound of several bones cracking echoed through their ears as they rolled about on the ground, crying in pain. Gavin was hopping on one foot, whimpering as he rubbed the sole of his foot. Within seconds he collapsed to the ground and began staring at the sky. While they sat on the ground complaining and yelling, a single apple fell off the tree and hit Michael on the head.
"GOD FUCKING DAMMIT!"
"What happened?" Applejack asked, running towards them from the farmhouse.
"We're kicking trees like you told us to," Michael snapped.
"Ah never said ya had t' kick any apple trees..." Applejack said slowly, but couldn't help smiling at them.
"But... I thought... the favor..." Ray said quietly.
"Is somethin' else completely," Applejack nodded.
"God," Geoff muttered angrily as he turned to Ray.
"Fucking," Michael added, following Geoff's lead.
"Blimey," Gavin said, staring idly at the clouds.
"Way to pull the combo breaker card, Gav," Jack said, scratching the side of his head tiredly as he stopped rolling on the ground. "So what then? Maybe you want us to plow your field?"
"What?" she asked, taking a step back. "We just met, if ya think that Ah'd-"
"Wha- NO!" he yelped as he jumped to his sore feet and began waving his hands violently at her. "I mean for planting seeds in your- fuck, that sounds wrong too."
"Relax, Ah know what ya mean. Ah was just pullin' your leg. Nah, nuthin' like that," she shook her head. She turned to look at the setting sun and squinted at it, judging what time of day it was. "How 'bout ya'll take a break?"
"Best suggestion I've heard all day," Michael said as he got off the ground to stretch his arms. Once the pain subsided he glared at Ray.
"Day's nearly over and ya'll will hardly be useful if you're going t' help me tomorrow," she chuckled.
Michael scowled and clenched his fist, ready to tell Applejack off, when Ray gently placed the cup of his hand on Michael's shoulder. Michael glared at him, but Ray simply shook his head, silently willing Michael to let it go.
"C'mon, we'll give ya'll some food and then let ya sleep," Applejack said, now trotting towards the farm house. "Hope ya'll like apples!"
"I love apples!" Gavin and Ray said in unison, bounding after her, ignoring the fact that they had said they were tired.
Jack and Geoff shared a quick shrug and slowly began trailing after the bubbly brony and the elated Englishman. Michael unclenched his fist and sighed.
"I fucking hate apples," Michael muttered sourly, kicking the apple that hit him before setting off after the others. "And my foot still hurts."
The guys had gathered inside the farmhouse, standing awkwardly in the front hall, waiting for Applejack to return. After three minutes of waiting, Gavin tapped on Ray's shoulder.
"What is it?" Ray asked Gavin, who was now bobbing up and down.
"I need to go to the loo," he said quietly.
"Don't think they have one here."
"But I don't want to piss myself. I didn't bring and extra knickers."
"Just wait for Applejack, we'll see if there's anywhere you can go."
"I don't think I can wait that long," he whimpered.
"Just go behind the barn," Michael muttered.
"Good idea!" Gavin said thankfully, sprinting out the door.
"Dammit Michael, what did you go and do that for?" Ray asked angrily. "We have to sleep in there tonight!"
"I don't want to hear him bitching, do you?" Michael retorted.
"He's got a point," Geoff nodded.
Before Ray could say anything else, the sound of someone coughing came from the entrance to the kitchen.
"What are ya'll talkin' about?" Applejack asked as they all turned to see her.
"Don't worry about it," Ray shrugged. "So is dinner almost ready?"
"Yup. Say, where's that Gavin fella?"
"Don't worry about it," Michael repeated. "He said he'd be right back."
"Alright then, c'mon in," she said as she walked into the kitchen. "Granny Smith is always happy t' have company, so she said she wanted t' meet ya."
The crew ducked through the door and entered the kitchen, then began to look around. The room was relatively large, and there was a series of cupboards lining the outer wall. There was also an oven with a window behind it and an old, green mare in front of it. The old mare turned around and her jaw dropped at the sight of the tall creatures.
"Hi," Ray said in an instantly cheerful tone, breaking the ice.
"My, ya'll sure are... tall," Granny Smith coughed awkwardly.
"Thanks for noticing," Geoff said, sitting on one of the small chairs. "I'm starving!"
"Well Ah guess we'll just have to fix that, won't we?" the old mare chuckled nervously.
Gavin came in a minute later and the crew had a quick dinner with the Apples. After they finished eating, the guys sat on the ground in the living room. Granny Smith sat in her rocking chair and asked them where they were from. The gang explained where they're from, what their job was, what their lives were like, telling them everything they could without making any mention of the show. Once they had finished explaining their situation, Granny Smith began telling them about her life. Not wanting to be completely rude, the guys listened intently, asking questions whenever she trailed off. Even Gavin contributed to the conversation, complementing Granny Smith whenever she talked about an accomplishment she has done. After a few hours of conversing, Applejack looked out the window and saw the sun was now gone and the moon was up high in the sky. She glanced behind her and saw Gavin curled up on the ground.
"Ah think ya'll should turn in," she said as she woke Gavin up by tapping on his thigh.
"Yeah, probably should," Jack said, stretching his arms. He turned to Granny Smith and gave her a lopsided smile. "Thanks for having us over and giving us some food."
"Ain't no problem," Granny Smith chuckled. "Just doin'... mah part... for..."
And with that, Granny Smith fell asleep mid-sentence.
"Guess that's our cue," Geoff sighed, beginning to walk towards the front door.
"Have a good night, boys," Applejack said.
Geoff threw up his right arm and saluted with his index and middle finger before walking out. The other guys thanked Applejack, though Michael's was more forced than the others. They then made their way to the farmhouse where they promptly took their places in piles of hay.
"You guys still mad at me?" Ray asked, half-jokingly.
"I don't know, maybe if I find out if I broke anything," Jack grunted.
"Hey, sorry for jumping to conclusions, but I wanted to get home just as much as you guys," Ray muttered, but smiled softly. "Well, maybe I'd like to stay a bit longer than you, but I want to get back all the same."
"This hay is fucking itchy," Michael muttered.
"See? Michael agrees with me too."
"Good to hear," Jack said, rolling onto his side. "Michael's right, this hay is fucking itchy."
After a few more complaints about their living conditions, the guys fell into a silence and one by one they began falling asleep. Except for Geoff. He reached into his pocket and grabbed his wallet. He flipped it open and used the light of the moon that shone through a crack in the wood to look at the contents of his wallet. He soon found what he was looking for and took it out, then folded his wallet and put it back in his pocket. He rolled to his side and got his eyes adjusted to the darkness so he could see what he had more clearly.
"I'll be back soon, Millie," Geoff said quietly, staring at the picture of his daughter. "I promise."
"Geoff, shut the fuck up I'm trying to sleep," Michael hissed.
Geoff sighed sadly and leaned the picture against the wall and continued to stare at it until he fell asleep.
"Soups on, everypony!" Applejack yelled as she burst in through the barn door and began to shake a bell with her hoof. "Come on, ya sleepin'... things. Time t' wake on up."
"Wugh?" came the response of the five gentlemen from their respective piles of incredibly uncomfortable and itchy hay.
"It's nearly seven in th' mornin'," she grunted as she walked up to the nearest human, Gavin, and poked him in the chest. "C'mon, it's time for breakfast. Ya'll will need that energy-"
"I don't want to go to school, mother," Gavin whined softly as he swatted hay over his head to block the noise.
"Mother?" she asked, then shook her head with a lazy smile. She trotted up to Ray and tapped on his chest a few times. "Ray, ya might wanna wake up your friends."
"Wah buh I?" he mumbled unintelligibly as he jumped off of his bedding.
"As if the funny lookin' one wasn't hard enough t' understand..."
"You're one to talk, you tart," Gavin muttered.
"Don't call AJ a tart," Ray growled, lightly punching Gavin in the shoulder.
"Ow, stop it!" he mumbled as he turned on his side to get more comfortable. "Say, what time did you say it was?"
"Did you just say seven in the morning?" Michael yelled in apparent frustration, instantly snapping into an upright position.
"Yeah, Ah did," she said, taking a defensive stance in front of the angry man.
"Oh. Just making sure I heard right," he sighed, plopping back down onto his hay.
"Are all of ya'll really this lazy?"
"You have much to learn of our ways," Jack yawned as he rolled off his makeshift bed, raising a brow as Geoff got out of his pile with determination. "You alright?"
"Never better," Geoff said sarcastically, rubbing his eyes to wake up. As he began walking towards Applejack he remembered the picture of his daughter, instantly making him turn around to get it.
"What's that?" she asked, trying to peek over Geoff's shoulder as he seemingly grabbed something off the floor and out of his pocket.
"Don't worry about it," he grunted, taking extreme care to slide the photo into his wallet before putting it back in his pants. "So what are the plans for today?"
"Try t' wake ya'll on up for starters..."
"Everyone, get up or you're all fired when we get back," Geoff said simply, and instantly, with many groans, the others got up and made their way around their boss. Geoff stretched his arms and raised his brow at the stetson wearing mare. "What do you need us to do?"
"A number of things."
"Great," Geoff sighed miserably, knowing that just meant he would have to stay here longer. "Alright, what's the first thing?"
"First thing Ah need ya'll to do is get some grub. Ya'll ain't no use t' me workin' on an empty stomach," Applejack chuckled as she tipped her hat and walked out of the barn.
The others stared at each other, then to their now growling stomachs. With a smile, Michael, Ray and Gavin bounded out the door to head towards the farmhouse. As Jack began walking out the door, he glanced behind him to see Geoff rubbing his head. Putting his hand on the door, he coughed loudly, getting Geoff's attention.
"Millie?" Jack guessed, noting how his friend lazily glanced at him.
"Yeah," Geoff sighed as he walked towards his bearded companion.
"Don't worry, we'll get back soon," Jack assured him, patting him on the back. "Besides, Millie is probably taking care of the house better than you."
"Probably," he laughed weakly as they walked out together. When the pair entered the barn, Gavin looked up from the table and smiled at them, half of an apple clutched between his teeth. "Whoopee, apples."
"Sorry, it's sorta our thing," she smiled thinly, not blaming him for not being too happy about the idea of eating apples all day.
"Didn't you used to grow corn too?" Ray asked idly as he took a large bite out of his apple, remembering something about seeing corn turn to popcorn in the first episode of season two.
"Er, yeah, we still do, it's just that we've had to regrow our entire field. How'd ya know that?" she inquired slowly.
"I, uh..." he sputtered as Michael shot him a small warning glare. "I went for a short walk around the place and I saw a field that... looked like it was growing corn, I guess."
"Oh, are ya familiar with corn?"
"I've eaten it before, so I guess you could call me a corn expert," Ray smirked.
"Why did you have to replant the entire field?" Gavin asked through a mouthful of red fruit.
"It's a long story," she said when Jack and Geoff finally took their seats and began to eat.
"Might as well tell us while we're eating to pass the time," Geoff muttered as he grabbed a pair of apples.
"Ah suppose it wouldn't hurt. Ya see, it was about a year ago when this fella name Discord came to town," Applejack paused and a small shiver went up her spine. "Should'a seen what he looked like. Long, snake-like body, claws of an eagle and a lion, legs of lizard and a lion. A large fang and a bear on his strangely shaped head, two different sized eyes and a pair of horns, one from a goat and one from a deer. Also had a pair of wings, one from a bat and one from a pegasus. Also had a dragon's tail. Really strange lookin' fella. Anyways, when he came t' town he started causin' chaos every which way. Turnin' the roads t' soap, the clouds t' cotton candy. Heck, even chocolate milk rain."
"Heh," Gavin stifled a snicker.
"Don't laugh, Gavin," Ray muttered. Though he knew the story already, he didn't want to make Applejack angry. "It's chocolate rain. Some stay dry and others feel the pain."
"You can't tell me what to do."
"Guys, shut up and let her talk," Geoff growled firmly, silencing his friends instantly. He turned to Applejack and nodded. "Go on."
"Thank ya," she nodded appreciatively as she looked at the others. "Y'see, when the chaos spread t' th' farm, it sorta ruined our entire crop of corn. We only replanted it just recently since then, should be ready in a month or so, but Ah think ya'll will be long gone by then."
"Hopefully," he said glumly, worrying about what would happen if they were stuck here forever.
"Sounds like he was a grade-A kind of guy. If the A stood for asshole," Jack said, putting his hand on Geoff's shoulder, almost as if he was reading Geoff's thoughts. "Right, Geoff?."
"Yeah, totally," he nodded, mind snapping away from the negative thoughts. Happy that they were talking about something else, he nodded at Applejack to continue to keep his mind clear.
"Yeah, he wasn't that great t' be around. That's why me and th' girls used the Elements of Harmony and trapped him in stone."
"That sounds a little... harsh, don't you think?" Gavin asked quietly, making Applejack raise a brow at him. "I mean, it sounds like he wasn't even doing bad things. He could have done a lot worse, but he went the mild route. And chocolate rain sounds like a riot of a time."
"Ruinin' an entire crop that was supposed to give our family a nice amount of bits doesn't sound like something mild," Applejack grunted in annoyance.
"Hey, maybe you could use the Elements of Harmony on Gavin," Michael suggested happily. "It'd be funny to see him stoned."
"Michael, stop pretending that you don't have a crush on Gavin," Ray said, stopping himself from laughing at his own remark.
"Hey, guess what? I have a girlfriend," Michael stated matter-of-factly.
"I know," he said, smile now breaking through. "It's Gavin."
"You know what, Ray? Eat a dick," Michael grumbled as he bit into his breakfast again, not in the mood to be angry this early in the morning when it would actually be excusable.
"So, how'd ya boys sleep?" Applejack asked, sitting at the table with them.
"Terribly," Jack chipped, flicking a piece of straw out of his beard. "It was itchy, uncomfortable, awkward and stupid."
"Heh, sorry. Ah'll see what Ah can do about gettin' ya'll some cots t' sleep on."
"That would be great."
"So. Do ya'll wanna get started soon, or wait until ya wake up a bit more? Ah could sorta tell that ya'll aren't used to this sorta life."
"Got that right," Michael grunted.
"I guess we should start working right away," Jack nodded at Geoff, but Geoff was looking at the table.
"Wait, guys, what if we each have to do a favor to get out?" Ray asked, rubbing his chin as he looked out the window at the clouds. "I mean, there are five of us and there are five favors that we have to do. What if we each have to do them individually or something like that?"
"Shit," Michael muttered, realizing he couldn't just sit back and make most of the others do the work. "Ray has a point."
"Yeah," Geoff nodded thoughtfully.
"Well, we don't know that for sure, right?" Jack asked quietly.
"No, we don't, but we don't want to risk anything going wrong," Geoff sighed, smiling weakly at Applejack. "So whats the favor you need us to do?"
"Ain't no big thing, Twilight was just gunna help me count our harvest," Applejack smiled back.
"Right, that sounds easy," Geoff said, now hopeful.
"How many apples did you have last year?" Gavin asked curiously.
"Somewhere 'round fifty thousand."
"Ooooookay, easy but tedious and time-consuming," Geoff scowled, turning towards the door. "Hey, AJ, mind if we find out what the other favors are before we get started? If it turns out we each need to do one, then I think it would be better if we knew what we were dealing with, y'know?"
"Of course," Applejack said without hesitating, then watched as Geoff got off his chair. "Gunna finish your breakfast with the others?"
"Nah, I'll just grab another one and wait outside," Geoff grunted as he grabbed an apple out of the brown bowl and walked towards the door.
"Alrighty then," she said, then looked at the others. "Ya'll try and finish up right quick, Ah don't think Geoff wants t' waste any time."
"Neither do I," Jack grunted, watching Gavin and Michael, knowing that they were going to be burdens the entire time. "If only Monty were here, he would have had all the favors done within ten minutes..."
Outside, Geoff closed the door behind him and ran his hand through his hair and massaged his scalp, relieving some of the tension he has been having. With a sigh, he bit into the apple and chewed on it slowly as he walked up to the side of the farmhouse and put his back against it. As he ate, he looked up at the clouds and watched them drift by. Again, he found himself taking his wallet out to look at the picture of his daughter while he took another bite of the apple.
"There he is!" a high pitched voice squealed from the entry path.
Geoff stuffed his wallet into his pocket and swallowed the mouthful of apple, tossing the core to the ground as a trio of fillies trotted up to him.
"Hiya. It's Geoff, right?" Applebloom asked hesitantly, still wary of what the being could do to her if he had the heart to.
"Yeah. Hi," Geoff muttered, hands in his pocket. Realizing she was still scared of him, he knelt down to be closer to their level, wanting to appear less intimidating.
"Wow, you're right, he does look weird," the orange pegasus said as she walked around the giant.
"Funny," he chuckled hoarsely, looking between the two newcomers. "Who're your friends?"
"I'm Sweetie Belle," the small unicorn said instantly.
"That name sounds like it suits you," he nodded, then glanced at the orange one. "How about you, shorty?"
"My name's Scootaloo," the pegasus filly replied, eyeing Geoff because of his slight.
"Scootaloo, huh?" he repeated, then looked up at the sky and pulled a face as he thought of the name. After a few seconds of having a look of confusion, his features softened and he smiled at the small filly. "I like it."
"Glad I have your approval," Scootaloo smirked.
"You should be," Geoff laughed, then squinted at her. "Y'know, you remind me of someone..."
"So what's the plan?" Jack asked as they strolled into Ponyville. "Last time I checked, we don't live here and we don't know where any of the other ponies live."
"This place doesn't look too big," Geoff said as he looked around. "I'm sure we can find them in less than an hour."
"Right, because less than an hour is a short and believable amount of time," Michael growled as he kicked a pebble loose from the path. "It'll probably take us all day just to find one of them. The one we'd have the most luck finding is Fluttershy's place. We can just walk around the border of Ponyville until we find a path heading straight towards a forest."
"You just want to visit her first because she's your favorite," Ray quipped, earning him a harsh glare from his friend. "Besides, I'm pretty sure all the other places would be just as easy to find. I mean, Pinkie lives in a gingerbread looking place, Rarity lives in a building that looks like something out of a circus and Rainbow Dash lives in the sky."
"Then let's walk until we find one of those places," Geoff sighed as he began walking further into Ponyville, still wanting to get home to his daughter as fast as he could. "Arguing isn't going to help us this-"
"Thank you for gathering here on such short notice, everypony," a familiar, bookwormy voice boomed from in the middle of town.
"Is that Twilight?" Michael asked, turning towards the voice.
"Yeah, it is," Ray nodded briefly.
"Please, take a seat before we get started. I want you all to be comfortable," she continued, only to go quiet while she waited for everyone to get settled.
"I wonder what she's doing," Michael muttered.
"She's probably explaining us to them. Good thing too, we almost walked in there without a second's notice," Jack chuckled nervously.
"What do you mean?"
"The horses still don't know what we look like, so we could have caused a little riot there."
"Shit, yeah, we could have," Geoff agreed passively, mind still on his daughter.
"Want to go check it out?" Gavin asked, smiling as the others turned to him. "I mean, it will help her if she introduces us, wouldn't it?"
"That's true," Ray nodded, now walking towards the center of town.
"I don't think that's a good idea," Geoff said quickly, reaching out to stop Ray.
"Probably not, but when has anything we've done been a good idea?" he inquired with an innocent smile. "They'll be scared of us when they first see us anyways, but at least if we go up there while she's talking about how we won't hurt them it will break the ice."
After less than a minute of walking, the group found themselves in an alley onlooking a large gathering of the bright horses. Ahead of them all was a large stage, where they saw a purple unicorn standing in front of a microphone.
"I hope you've all had a relaxing week thus far, because I will need you to have an open mind about this, okay?" she asked, only to be greeted with silence and a few sparse nods. "Er, thank you. You see, it appears that we have creatures from another place who are going to be seen around here for a week at most, so I will need you all to-"
"What kind of place?" a stallion asked from the crowd. "Like, Manehattan?"
"No, not like Manehatten," she sighed, leaning closer to the mic. "They're actually from-"
"Zebrafrica?" a mare guessed.
"No, not Zebrafrica," she muttered, slightly annoyed now. Clearing her throat, she cast her sight over them. "Why are you wondering where they're from? Shouldn't you be wondering what I meant by creatures?"
"I guess. Where are they from?"
"The answer to that, I'm not entirely sure. You see, they aren't from around here. They aren't even from this planet."
"You mean we have aliens living among us?"
Gasps and murmurs of confusion erupted from the large coalition of vibrant ponies. Twilight, beginning to think it was panic, quickly hushed them all by whistling into the mic.
"Please, calm down. Yes, they are aliens, but I can assure you they mean us no harm."
"What do they look like?"
"Well... they're tall and walk on their hind legs," she said carefully, trying to think of what she could say to make them more safe. She decided it was best to go on the joking side. "And they seem pretty friendly, if not on the stupid side."
"We're not stupid!" Gavin protested loudly, only to find himself tackled by a late Michael Jones.
"God damn it, Gavin," Jack sighed as the group found themselves the center of attention.
"Monsters!" a light-blue mare yelled from the audience, causing a wave of gasps and yells to go through every mare and stallion in the surrounding area.
"Everypony, calm down," she said into the microphone as the ponies began running in circles.
"They're going to enslave us all!"
"Please calm down..." she said as she vigorously tapped on the microphone, but this only made the frantic ponies jumpier.
Geoff looked at Twilight as she tried her hardest to calm the ponies, but to no avail. He glanced over at Michael, who was now getting off of Gavin and laid his hand on the rage-filled man's shoulder. Michael glanced up to his boss, wondering what he was doing, but Geoff simply nodded at him. With a smile, Michael turned to the ponies and cupped his hands over his mouth.
"Everyone calm your shit!" Michael yelled into his hands. Instantly hundreds of pairs of eyes snapped to Michael and the sound of hundreds of rumps falling to the ground echoed throughout the area. Surprised that his yelling actually helped the situation, he took a step back and nodded awkwardly at Twilight.
"Much appreciated, Michael," Twilight said thankfully. With a heavy exhale she motioned at the men to come up to the stage while the civilians gawked at them. "If not a little aggressive."
"It worked, didn't it?" he asked as he climbed on stage.
"I suppose," she agreed reluctantly.
"We're not stupid, by the way," Jack said as he passed by a couple and their child, who pulled the colt back to protect him. "But I take it you were just kidding, right?"
"Yeah, I was," she nodded, happy the group had not taken offense to her words, barring Gavin, who climbed the stage last and stood off to the side.
"Well, are you going to introduce us?" Ray asked.
"Oh, right," she coughed into the microphone. "These are the aliens I was talking about. As you can see, while they look so different, we are quite similar in many ways. They're calm."
"To an extent," Geoff added quietly.
"They're relatively smart."
"To an extent."
"And they speak the same language as us," she said, then looked to Geoff.
"No, we're almost the same there minus every other word being frowned upon."
"Anyways, would you five like to introduce yourselves? Maybe tell them what you did back where you came from?"
"Me first, me first!" Gavin said, tumbling towards the microphone only to be held back by Michael, allowing Geoff to advance first.
"Uh..." Geoff said into the microphone as he looked upon the scared faces of the pastel horses ahead of him. "Hi?"
"Maybe a little more than that," she insisted.
"Er, right. My name is, uh, Geoff Ramsey. I work at a company called Rooster Teeth and these four guys sort of work for me, I guess."
"My turn!" Gavin said, shaking Michael free. Sprinting towards the microphone, Geoff rolled his eyes and stepped to the side, giving Gavin the courtesy of free speech. "Hi there. My name is Gavin Free and I work in the film industry and have worked on many films that you've probably never heard of. Oh, I also work for Geoff and live with him."
"You live together?" a stallion asked from the audience asked.
"Yup," Gavin nodded instantly.
"Like... in the same room?"
"No, but on occasion I've seen his-"
"I'm just going to step in now," Jack said quickly as Geoff began to facepalm.
"But I wasn't finished," Gavin protested as the mic was snatched out of his hands.
"Yes. You were. Uh... hi. My name is Jack Pattillo and I started a thing called Achievement Hunter with Geoff," Jack explained. He let out a small groan when Twilight made a small motion with her head, telling him to tell more. "I also have a beard."
The crowd whooped, only to fall silent as quickly as they began making noise.
"Thanks," he nodded at Ray and Michael.
"My names Michael. Michael Jones. I'm the resident yeller in the company. I yell for other peoples' entertainment as well as my own. It's a pretty easy job seeing how hard Gavin tries to screw everything up."
"I don't screw everything up," Gavin scowled, but couldn't help but hide a sly smile. "As much as I want to."
"Right, you screw up screwing up. I'm not sure if that's a paradox or if you're just an idiot," Michael muttered, earning a few chuckles from the crowd as Gavin shrugged and walked off the stage. Wanting to tell more jokes at his friend's expense, he reluctantly nodded at Ray to introduce himself.
"Thank you, Michael," Ray said promptly as he grabbed the mic. "Sup guys, my name is Ray Narvaez and I'm Puerto Rican. That means I'm poor."
The crowd let out a few sad murmurs, wondering why he chose that to share. Ray looked over at Goeff and gave him a small, pouty look, forcing his lip to quiver. After shaking his head briefly, Geoff nodded at Ray.
"Shout out to Ponyville!" Ray exclaimed, raising his hand to the air in excitement, earning a round of cheers from the crowd.
"Sorry about cutting this short, but I think we should be going," Geoff said as he took the mic from the little ray of sunshine. "We came here to help Twilight's friends, so if we want to get home we have to do that. I don't want Gavin to cause any more damage than he undoubtedly will do when trying to help them."
"Hey, where is Gavin?" Jack asked when Geoff gave the microphone to Twilight.
"Damn it," the others grunted, running off the stage to look for Gavin.
"Glad you decided to come help me out," Pinkie giggled as she walked next to the Brit, escorting him to an unknown location.
"Help you?" Gavin inquired. "As soon as I got off the stage you told me to follow you unless I wanted something bad to happen to me."
"Not just you, but your friends too! But don't worry, it shouldn't take long to get to Sugar Cube Corner, then we can get started."
"So, uh, what do you need done?" he asked quietly as he licked the icing off of his lips.
"The place has gotten really dirty and Twilight offered to help clean the place. Even though I could do it really fast, I knew how much she likes to clean things so I said sure, but then you guys came along and even though Twilight likes cleaning, she knew you guys liked your old planet more, so now you have to do it. How is your planet, anyways? Are there ponies there too? Are they nice? Ooooh, ooooh, do they like parties? Are any of them pink? Don't answer that, I want to be surprised! Okay, maybe give me a hint, okay? Pleasepleasepleeeaaaase?"
"I, er... what am I doing again?"
"Cleaning," she smiled.
"Cleaning?" he asked.
"Cleaning," she repeated, smile growing wider.
"Well I certainly got the browner end of this tree pole, didn't I?" he muttered quietly, feeling gyped out of doing a fun favor. "Wait, how will not cleaning hurt us? Is there deadly bacteria around here?"
"Aw, none of that. I just needed you to help clean otherwise I wouldn't be allowed to invite you."
"Invited?" he inquired, curiosity piquing.
"To my party, silly."
"A party," she confirmed with a large smile. "There's no sense in inviting you to a dirty place! Unless you're having a dirt party, but the dirt I know doesn't know how to dance very well. That's why I want you to help me, because cancelling the party wouldn't be good for you."
"Well, that doesn't sound bad at all, so I suppose it makes the chore seem a tad less bogus," he said honestly, scratching his chin as he looked over the pink pony. "So is there going to be a theme about it, or is it going to be put together all willy-nilly?"
"Yup, we're going to have a 'welcome all humans party'!"
"But weren't you planning this party before we came here?"
"Uh-huh, but I didn't know why, but then I remembered that I love having fun and parties are really fun so I didn't care about having a reason! But now that you're here it reminded me of why I was going to throw the party in the first place!"
Gavin stared at the pony who was bouncing circles around him, smiling pleasantly at her as he would at an over-excited pet. Her logic made complete sense to him.
"Ohmygosh, wait!" she gasped, freezing in midair in front of Gavin.
"Oh god, the world hasn't become slow-motion again, has it?" Gavin asked nervously, waving his hand in front of his face to make sure his brain wasn't stroking out.
"I don't know what humans like, and since this a party for them and I don't know what they like, how am I supposed to make them feel welcome? What if I put something in the party that they don't like?" she asked, questions shooting out like rapid-fire as she looked around nervously. "What if they don't like parties? What if they start hating me? What if they like hating me, so their hate turns into them liking me and they hate me even more because they don't hate me anymore? What if-"
"It's just a party," he muttered. Pinkie twisted her head at him, eyes blinking individually.
"Just a party? Just a party?"
"I take it back! I take it back!" Gavin yelped, recoiling backwards from the slowly approaching horse.
"Wait a second!" she gasped again, but this time she began to smile. "You're a human! Or at least I think so. You are a human, right?"
"I... I think so."
"You think so? I need you to know so!"
"My friends would tell you that I'm English then say that means that I'm not, but yes, I am," he coughed, smiling warily at her.
"Great! Okay, we're here, so forget cleaning the place. I can do that by myself and have it done in three-halves of a jiffy," she said as she stopped in front of the large shop. "You're going to help me throw the party by telling me what your friends like, okay?"
"I think I can do that," he chuckled, dark grin spreading across his face like wildfire.
"Well we're off to a splendid start. As soon as we finished with the introductions, Gavin went off to do God knows what," Geoff growled in annoyance as he jogged past another empty alley, eyes scanning it quick and efficiently. "If he burns something down, who knows what these ponies will do to us."
"Hey, maybe him burning stuff down won't be a bad thing," Ray chipped happily.
"How wouldn't it be a bad thing?" Jack asked.
"Well firstly we'd be able to find him really fast," he replied with a smirk, looking over the houses and buildings for smoke. "And secondly there wouldn't be any evidence that he did it, because he, you know, burnt it."
"I'm sure you guys are over reacting," Twilight said as she kept to Geoff's side. "While Gavin doesn't seem like he's a complete genius, he seems to be pretty friendly and docile."
"We know he isn't completely retarded, but trust us when we say he can cause shit when he wants to," Geoff muttered as he put his hand over his eyes to block out the sun. Gavin was still nowhere to be seen. Angry, tired and annoyed, Geoff walked next to the closest house and put his back against it, slowly sliding down until he was sitting as comfortably as he could on the ground.
"Taking a break, Geoff?" she asked, watching as he rubbed his head while the others slowed down.
"Yeah, you guys just go on. I'll catch up," he sighed.
"Are you sure?" Jack asked tiredly.
"Yeah, just go," he nodded.
"Alright," Jack muttered, nodding at the others to continue.
Geoff watched as the others disappeared behind a corner within a few seconds. Letting out a groan, he rubbed the back of his neck and sniffed the air, finding the smell of the clean air relaxing on his nerves. He closed his eyes for a few seconds, counting to ten in his head, and when he opened them he saw a blue pony above him, grinning.
"Hey. Rainbow Dash, right?" he asked tiredly, voice barely above a whisper.
"Yup," she nodded, landing on the ground next to him. "And you're... Geoff?"
"You got it," he nodded as he closed his eyes again.
"Where are the other guys?" she inquired, looking around for the other humans.
"Off looking for Gavin. He ran off after Twilight held a town meeting to introduce us."
"That's not good," she chuckled.
"Tell me about it. We just told them we were friendly, and Gavin is already off to God knows where, probably up to no good."
"Want my help looking for him?"
"I'd say yeah, but we don't even know where to start."
"That's okay, I'm on it."
"You don't have to-" he started, but she quickly darted into the sky, a clear and visible multicolored trail following her. "Bother."
Before Geoff could even think his next thought, a trail of dust erupted next to him and a smug Rainbow Dash walked out of it.
"Jesus, you're fast," he sputtered as he waved away the dust in front of him
"Thanks," she chuckled as she walked next to him. "Pinkie has Gavin. They're at Sugarcube Corner."
"Hey, great!" he smiled, getting off the ground. "Hey, if you're not too busy, do you think you can help me find the others?"
"Totally," she nodded as she eyed the human over. "Say, how much do you weigh?"
"Uh, why?" he asked, suddenly feeling a lump in his stomach.
Somewhere else in town, the others were looking for the strange duo, asking ponies if they had seen Gavin. OF course, most of them didn't, but Twilight believed it was because the Ponyvillians still felt intimidated by the comparatively lumbering aliens.
"It's no use, we'll never find him," Michael muttered tiredly, kicking a loose rock.
"We will, we just have to keep looking." Twilight said, trying to assure both the guys and herself.
"Just put me down already!" Geoff yelled, making the others whip around.
Above the ground, roughly forty feet away, Geoff was being held up in the air by Rainbow Dash, who was straining to keep up in the air.
"Well there's a sight I never thought I'd see," Jack grunted.
"Geez, you're pretty heavy, you know that?" Rainbow Dash asked as she brought Geoff to the ground.
"Hey, I told you not to do it, but nooo, you insisted it would be faster," he grunted, eyes wide as he began feeling his hair which was going in every direction.
"Oh, hey, Geoff!" Ray said with a smile as he and the others walked up to him. "I like your hair."
"How was your flight?"
"There weren't any babies or stupid bitches with cameras, so pretty good."
"What happened?" Twilight asked.
"Well, Rainbow Dash found Gavin and the others, then she brought me to you guys so we could catch him."
"Sweet, where is he?" Ray asked, rubbing his hands together enthusiastically.
"Over in Sugarcube... Corner, was it?" Geoff asked, looking to Rainbow Dash who smiled and nodded in response. Geoff then looked to Michael and Ray. "She's fast, you know that?"
"Why yes, Geoff, we are aware," Michael smirked.
"Sugarcube Corner isn't too far from here, so it should take maybe a minute to get there," Twilight said, already setting a fast speed to the pastry shop. "Let's just hope he's still there when we get there."
"I think he will be," Rainbow Dash said, flying in a relaxed position on her back. "He looked like he was setting something up with Pinkie."
"Wait, what do you mean by that?" Jack asked nervously.
"Probably a party, seeing as it's Pinkie Pie," Twilight sighed, relaxing her pace now that she wasn't worried. "At least he's keeping out of trouble."
The guys, however, didn't think this. In fact, the thought of this only made them run faster, even though they had no idea where Sugarcube Corner was.
"What's the rush?" Rainbow Dash asked, easily flying at their speed, but now in the upright position.
"No time to explain. Are we going the right way?" Geoff asked.
"Great," he nodded, now running even faster while the other guys matched his speed.
Twilight and Rainbow Dash exchanged a glance and a shrug, and then began running after the guys, catching up with them as they neared Sugarcube Corner. Geoff stopped to catch his breath once he reached the front door, panting heavily after the short but fast sprint. Michael looked through the window, but found that the window was covered.
"Looks like the place is closed," Jack grunted, noticing what Michael was staring at.
"He probably just closed it after he saw Rainbow Dash," Ray said. "I mean, that's assuming he knows how to work windows."
Geoff chuckled slightly and stood up straight, hands on his waist as he uncricked his back. He then curled up his fingers and went to knock on the door, only for it to open up as his fingers came within an inch of it.
"Hey, guys!" Gavin said, putting his hands behind his back to pull the door closed. "Where did you guys go?"
"Where did we go?" Geoff repeated angrily. "Where did you go?"
"I went here, Geoff," he said with his usual fake sincerity.
"Yeah, what did you go here to do?"
"Oh, nothing, just doing things and stuff. You know, the usual."
"That's what I was worried about," Geoff nodded once before pushing Gavin to the side.
Before Geoff could open the door, it quickly swung open again, but this time Pinkie jumped out and slammed the door behind her. Geoff sighed and rubbed his face.
"Hi, Geoff!" Pinkie smiled brightly. "I like your hair."
"Thanks," he muttered, trying to reach for the door, only for Pinkie to slap his hand away. "Hey, what was that for? I was just trying to find out what you and Gavin did."
"I know, and that would ruin the surprise!" she pouted. "We only need a few more things, then you can come in, okay?"
"Uh, alright. How long will it take you to get what you need?"
"Not that long," she smiled, looking over to Gavin. "What was that last thing you said they liked, again?"
Gavin opened his mouth to tell her, but then paused when the others looked at him. He shut his mouth and knelt down only to whisper into Pinkie's attentive ear.
"Alrighty, that shouldn't take long to get," she nodded, locking the door. "I'll be back soon. You guys just wait out here, okay? And no sneaking a peek."
"Alright, alright. If you're playing along with Gavin, I can only assume it's safe," Geoff grunted, staring at the other two ponies with uncertainty. "It will be safe, right?"
"It should be, yes," Twilight nodded.
"Pinkie takes her parties pretty seriously. She wouldn't want anything to go wrong," Rainbow Dash said in agreement.
"Well... good," Geoff sighed, sitting on the ground in front of the shop. "As long as she knows what she's doing, we should be fine."
"So you boys worried about me, huh?" Gavin smiled sweetly, sitting next to Geoff.
"You are sort of known to blow shit up," Michael coughed forcibly.
"Oh yeah!" he chuckled as if he had forgotten all about it. "But don't worry, I have a feeling you guys will love this little shindig."
"Great, now I'm worried," Ray said nervously.
"Gavin? What did you help Pinkie with, if you don't mind me asking?" Twilight said.
"I don't know if she'd want me to tell you. It's sort of a surprise, you know?"
"Its not a surprise if you tell us it's a surprise, you idiot," Michael growled.
"Oh, but it is, my dear Michael," he said, patting his angry friend on the shoulder. "I have a feeling you will be pleasantly surprised."
"If you won't tell us what you helped her with, will you at least tell us how much of an influence you had on what the party has?" Jack asked.
"A lot. I was pretty much telling her everything she should have at the party, and she listened intently. But no need to worry, you have my word that you'll like it."
"Your word doesn't mean diddly poop," Michael sighed.
"Heh, poop," Ray added.
"Good insight, Ray," Jack shook his head.
The seven of them sat in silence, waiting for Pinkie to return, wondering what was in store for them. After about fifteen minutes, the party host came bouncing back, large box on her back.
"What's that?" Rainbow Dash asked curiously.
"Oh, just the last thing Gavin told me to get to make this party truly great for them," Pinkie stated, unlocking the door. "Now you guys wait here while Gavin and I double check with everything. The party guests should be arriving any minute now."
The guys nodded reluctantly as Gavin shot a sly smile at them before following Pinkie inside, closing and locking the door behind him once again. Once again, the others found themselves in an awkward silence, waiting to be allowed inside. After about five more minutes of that, the door unlocked and swung open while a large red carpet shot out of it, along with velvet rope on either side of it.
"The party can now officially started!" Pinkie smiled, waving the others in.
Twilight and Rainbow Dash instantly went over the ropes and walked inside, smiling as random noises came from within. The guys shared a shrug and went inside, only to be surprised at what they saw. The first thing they noticed was that the noises came from the arcade machines that were lined up against the wall to their right. The second thing they noticed was a screen and projector set up on the far side of the room, playing what appeared to be a strange pony comedy. But it was what was on the left wall that made Jack and Geoff beam. There was a table with several large kegs on it, which they presumed was filled with alcohol sitting in the middle of the table, many plastic cups next to it.
"Yeah, I was pretty surprised they had all this stuff here too. Pinkie said she never drank the stuff inside there, but she told me she heard it was pretty good," Gavin said smugly, leaning against the entrance to the door as the others gawped. "Well?"
"There are no words," Jack said quietly.
"Then let's get this party started!" Pinkie boomed from the other side of the room, pressing play on a large sound system behind the pastry counter.
"Gavin, I have to say, I'm surprised," Geoff said, holding a plastic cup in his hand. One which he had already drank and refilled eight times in the span of forty-five minutes. "I thought you would have used this time for something that suited you better."
"What? Like being a git?" Gavin asked with a sweet, innocent smiled.
"Well, yeah," he nodded without thinking. Not that he had to, seeing as Gavin was indeed a git of the highest order
"Come now, Geoff. You know me better than that," the Englishman scoffed, taking a sip out of his own glass.
"Yeah, I'm afraid I do," Geoff chuckled, patting Gavin on the shoulder. "But it's okay. I forgive you."
"Aw, you're the best, Geoff," Gavin smirked, now watching as the ponies danced about in the middle of the room. "So what do you think about them?"
"I guess they're alright, but I don't think I'm going to really miss them when we get back," Geoff shrugged.
"Come on, Ray! You can do it!" Jack yelled from the other side of the shop. "Kick Michael's ass!"
"Fuck you, Jack," the angry Michaeld mumbled as he slammed the palm of his right hand on the buttons of the arcade machine. "And fuck this game. It controls like shit."
"Nah, you're just bad at video games," Jack smirked.
"Better than you are, asshole," he grumbled.
"YOLO. Right, Jack?" Ray asked as he continued tapping the button as fast as he could.
"YOLO indeed, Ray," Jack nodded, bemused.
Ray smirked and danced around the group of buttons with his fingers, deftly tapping each one at the right moment, while at the same time moving his avatar around Michael. Michael tried his best to get more points than Ray, but Ray kept grabbing each coin that Michael was going for before he could get to them. After a few more seconds of this, the game ended and the words "New Highscore" appeared on the screen, along with a command saying "Enter Name".
"Fuck this," Michael snapped, instantly turning around to walk away from the machine.
"That's right, Michael, you better run," Jack laughed happily.
"You want to play?" Ray asked, smiling coyly.
"Yeah, no thanks," he answered instantly, preferring not to even try to win an already lost fight. Jack then noticed Gavin and Geoff talking to each other. "Come on, let's go."
"Give me a sec," Ray said as he quickly put in X-Ray for his name. "Alright, lets go."
Ray then grabbed the cup that sat on top of the arcade machine and followed Jack to the others.
"Hey guys," Geoff nodded at the pair as they approached him. "So you're just good at all video games, aren't you, Ray?"
"Please, Geoff," he bowed. "I prefer the term godlike."
"Modest as always," Geoff chuckled, taking a swig from his alcohol. "Still surprised they have booze here."
"Yeah, it is kind of surprising," Jack nodded.
"You going to grab a drink, Ray?" Michael asked.
"Nah, I'll stick to the punch," he replied with a laugh, sipping out of the cup.
"Yeah, me too!" Pinkie said, peeking out from under the table with her own glass of punch, surprising the others.
"Hey Pinkie," Ray said, smirking as the pony put an abnormally large twisty straw into her cup. "This is a petty rad party."
"Thanks, Ray!" she giggled. "They're sort of my specialty."
"Hey, I helped," Gavin grunted.
"Of course, Gavy," she agreed instantly. "This party wouldn't have been as great if you hadn't helped."
"God, I still can't believe Gavin actually helped with something that didn't involve fire," Michael grunted.
"Yeah, I guess that's one favor down, huh?" Pinkie asked, making all the guys except for Gavin turn all focus to Pinkie. "I mean, this wasn't the original favor that he was supposed to do, but I was probably going to switch the old favor for the one Gavin did for me, so I'm pretty sure it still counts as the favor he needed to do to get home! That means that he doesn't even need to do that much for his time here! That also means that he gets to spend more time having fun instead of boring work!"
"Ah, great. Gavin gets to sit around and watch us do all the work, as usual," Michael growled, crossing his arms in disappointment.
"I know, isn't it great?" he asked with impish delight. Turning to the pink pony, he lifted up his glass. "To Pinkie. A strange horse who, by letting me plan this party, has now guaranteed my way back home."
"Here, here!" she whooped, putting her punch in the air with the girls.
"Lighten up, Michael. We're at a party," Jack said, elbowing Michael before drinking out of his cup.
"You, Jack Pattillo, the king of butthurt and grumpiness, are telling me to lighten up," he asked, raising a brow. "You must be drunk."
"Nah, I only have a little buzz," Jack shrugged, waving the insult off. "Besides, we'll just make Gavin help us do this stuff anyways. "I don't mean to jinx us, but I think we might actually make it through this pony stuff alive."
"We still don't know what the others want to do, though," Geoff added warily, turning to Pinkie. "So what do the other ponies will try to get us to do?"
"I don't know," she said honestly, putting her hoof on her chin to show that she was thinking. "Rarity will probably want you guys to parade in her dresses, Fluttershy will probably make you guys clean up after her animal friends, and Rainbow Dash will probably want you guys to race her."
"God dammit, Gavin really got off easy," Michael muttered sourly.
"Heh, I did, didn't I?" Gavin chortled, finding great joy in watching Michael grow angry.
"But hey, you never know what Twilight promised she would do for the others," Pinkie added after taking a large sip from her glass, watching giddily as the juice traveled through the straw. "Maybe Rainbow Dash is the one that wants you to try on her dresses."
"Rainbow Dash makes dresses?" Geoff asked, raising a brow.
"Well, she does sort of look like she would be one to do that," Jack coughed.
"What do you mean by that?" Ray asked seriously. "Because she looks like a lesbian horse?"
"Jesus, Ray. As usual, your tact is something to behold," Jack grunted as he shook his head.
"Why don't we just ask them what they want us to do?" Michael asked. "I mean, they're all here right now, and that is what we sort of set out to do..."
"Good point," Geoff nodded, then turned to the ponies to grab their attention. "Hey girls, mind coming over here for a second?"
The girls stopped, shrugged at each other, and then made their way to the guys.
"What can we do for you, Geoff?" Twilight asked.
"We were about to ask the same thing to the others," Geoff smiled, turning to address the others. "As you guys know, to get home we have to do favors for you guys. We're not sure if more than one of us can help you with each favor, so we figured it would be cool if you could tell us what you needed to be done, that way we can decide who does what."
"Oh, that?" Rarity asked with a laugh. "Twilight simply promised to help me gather some materials and catalog my inventory. It is not that hard, nor is there a lot to do."
"Great," Geoff nodded. "Michael, you-"
"Hey, I want to hear what Fluttershy needs to be done before I do anything Rarity says," Michael grunted, but turned to Rarity. "No offense."
"None taken." Rarity said slowly, but actually took slight offense from his words.
"Me?" Fluttershy asked quietly, not liking how the angry one picked her out.
"Yeah, what did Twilight promise to do for you?" he asked calmly.
"She just... promised to help train some of m-my animal friends," she stuttered. "But it takes a long time, and you need to be really patient and nice to the animals for them to listen, so I don't think-"
"I'm cool with that," he nodded instantly, turning to the guys. "Dibs that one."
"Worst pony," ray coughed, but only loud enough for Michael and the guys to hear.
"Ray, I swear to god..." Michael growled, but smiled at Fluttershy. "Can't wait to help you out, though. It should be fun."
"I, er... okay..." she said, taking a slight step back, slightly scared for the safety of her and her animal friends.
"Alright, and how about you?" Geoff asked, now looking at Rainbow Dash.
"Well, it's sort of a surprise," Rainbow Dash said honestly.
"Come on, we need to know," he said.
"Alright, but you have to promise to not tell this to anyone, okay?" she asked, making the guys grow curious. "It'll just be for the ponies in this room. And humans too, I guess."
"Sure, fine, whatever," Geoff nodded impatiently.
"Hey, I'm serious," she said firmly. "Promise you won't tell anyone?"
"Yes, we promise," he said.
"Cross your heart?" Rainbow Dash asked, dragging her hoof along her heart to form a cross.
"Cross my heart," he grunted, repeating her movement.
"Hope to fly?" she said, flapping her wings.
"Say hope to fly," she replied coolly.
"Fine, fine," he said, flapping his wrists. "Hope to fly."
"Stick a cupcake in my eye," she said finally, putting her right hoof inches away from her eye.
"Yeah, stick a cupcake in my eye," he said quickly, following her lead.
"All of you do it now," she said.
"Cross my heart, hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my eye," they said in unison, doing the movements, knowing it would be pointless to argue with her.
"There, now what is it?" Geoff inquired tiredly.
"Alright, well, I know this little filly named Scootaloo, right?" she said, instantly grabbing Geoff's attention. "I sort of went to the doctor a while back and they told me that... well, they said that she isn't really supposed to fly."
"What do you mean?"
"I don't know, they said something about under developed wings, along with some other doctor mumbo jumbo," she said quietly. "They said that beyond a wing transplant that there wasn't much hope for her being able to naturally fly for more than a few seconds. As a pegasus, that's one of the worst things that could happen."
"That sucks," Ray said quietly.
"I know," she nodded, then shook her head. "Anyways, her birthday is coming up in a few days, and Twilight promised to help me give her the experience of flying, you know? I carried her in the sky a few times, and she seemed happy with that, but nothing beats the feel of flying on your own. I'm still not sure how we're going to do it, but I wanted to find a way to help her do that."
"That's... really commendable," Geoff said, feeling mixed of emotions.
"Thanks," she nodded. "Anyways, it's not for a few days, so we have a while to cook something up."
"Alright, but who's going to help do that?" Jack asked. "None of us are really good at-"
"I'll do it," Geoff grunted.
"Michael already said he wanted to help Fluttershy, I assume Ray wants to help Applejack-"
"Yeah!" Ray chipped.
"And I don't really want to help with some silly dresses," he said, turning to Rarity. "No offense."
"None taken," Rarity said quietly, wondering if it was her breath.
"Alright, so I guess I... dammit, I have to do the dress stuff?" Jack asked, beginning to turn to Rarity.
"None... taken," she said glumly before he could say it.
"Ah suppose that's our cue. Thanks for th' party, Pinkie," Applejack said. "It was fun, but Ah think we should probably get goin' if we want to be fully rested for tomorrow."
"No problem!" she giggled. "We'll throw another party for the guys before they leave. And when they do another favor. And if I think of any other reason to throw a party, because who doesn't like parties?"
"The worst kind of people," Gavin said.
"I know, right?"
"Girls, we'll be sure to help you as best as we can," Geoff said as he opened the door and walked out with Applejack. Once they were all outside, they set a brisk pace for Sweet Apple Acres. "You know, Jack? Things actually are starting to look up."
"Yeah. Speaking of looking up, I wonder how Ryan's doing?" Jack said, scratching his beard.
Back in Austin, Texas, roughly five seconds after the others got zapped away, a worried Ryan runs towards Rooster Teeth offices, muttering swears under his breath. Inside, Ryan sees Kara standing in the doorway to the Achievement Hunter offices, making him think that the others hadn't started yet and he still had time.
"Hey Kara, sorry I'm late. I sort of had some other stuff to attend to," Ryan said as he pushed the doors open, only to see that Kara's was looking into the room with a worried expression. "Kara, are you okay?"
"I..." she trialed off in reply, shaking her head dumbly. "Where the hell did they go?"
"Where did who go? The guys?" Ryan asked, walking up to the doorway to look into it. When he looked through, however, he found that the room was empty, bar some of the equipment which was on the ground. "Maybe they decided to wait until I showed up to start."
"No, they were there," she shook her head more vigorously this time. "I walked in to tell them to shut up, then something happened and they weren't there anymore."
"What do you mean they weren't there anymore?"
"I don't know. They were there, and now they aren't."
"Did they tell you where you went?"
"Dammit, guys. Will you quiet down?" Burnie Burns asked, looking down from the staircase at the duo. "I can't finish my sandwich with you guys yammering on like a bunch of old ladies."
"Sorry, Burnie, but the others kind of... left," Ryan muttered, scratching the back of his neck.
"That sucks," Burnie shrugged. "But you guys still need to get a video out. It's your job."
"But I can't do it alone," he objected.
"That's not my problem. My problem is trying to finish my damn sandwich," Burnie shouted as he went up the stairs. "Do what you have to do, Ryan."
After twenty minutes of scrambling around, Ryan had solicited the help of a few people around the offices. The group, consisting of Ryan, Caleb, Kara, and Joel Heyman, sat in the Achievement Hunter room. They all sat in front of a screen, controllers and equipment on, but facing Ryan, who stood in the middle of the room.
"Alright guys, I know this is short notice, but we need to put out another Let's Play," Ryan said to the group sitting in chairs before him. "I'm sure you've all played this game before, so let's just try to get right into it, okay?"
"I don't remember what I'm supposed to do," Joel said, eyeing the screen curiously. "This is Battletoads, right?"
"I'm not sure what this week's competition is, so we'll have to make one up," he continued, ignoring Joel's question.
"Maybe we should just play around for fun," Kara suggested, feeling slightly out of place.
"Don't be silly, we don't have fun with each other," Ryan said, waving his hand at her. "No, we need to find an objective to meet or something. Caleb, any ideas?"
"Maybe we can work on making the coolest looking fortress," Caleb said. "Or go into pairs of two and try to fight each other."
"Hmm," Ryan murmured, rubbing his chin.
"Oh! Oh no! Ryan, help! I'm blind!" Joel cried, looking around in a frenzy.
"Joel," he started, face-palming at Joel. "Your headset is over your eyes."
"Oh," Joel said, pushing it back on top of his head.
"What if we go into teams of two and try to make the most badass fort, but we can attack each other?" Ryan asked Caleb.
"Sounds good with me," Caleb nodded.
"Joel, you're with Caleb. Kara, you're on my team," he said, sitting down in his chair. "Alright, let's get this started."
"I need to go to the bathroom," Joel said quietly, but Ryan simply ignored him and turned on his mic.
"Hey guys, Ryan here. Sorry to say, but the other guys kind of... took a trip... or something," he said with forced enthusiasm. "Anyways, guys, we have a special treat for you today. We have guest appearances from both Kara, as well as one you've wanted to see again, Joel."
"What am I supposed to do again?" Joel asked, now holding the controller upside down, mic back over his eyes.
"We are so fired," Ryan whimpered, putting both of his hands on his face.
"Rise an' shine, boys," Applejack announced, pushing the barn door open, allowing the sun to wash over the five of them. "It's another beautiful day, don't want y'all sleepin' through it."
"What time is it?" Jack grunted groggily, rubbing his eyes as he sat up.
"Eight. Figured Ah'd give ya an extra hour of sleep on accounta th' party."
"Thanks, then," Geoff said, scratching his head as he pulled himself off the ground. "Mind giving us a minute?"
"Sure thing," she said, tipping her hat at them.
"Thanks again," Geoff sighed as she walked outside. Shifting his head, he looked at his coworkers who were all currently trying their hardest to think of an excuse to not get up.
"God, I really don't want to work today," Michael moaned as he sat on his pile of straw, pulling some of it over him, using it as an itchy blanket.
"Not even for a Scooby Snack?" Ray asked tiredly, lifting himself out of the hay.
"Do you have a Scooby Snack, Ray?" Michael asked as he turned to Ray with a lifted brow. "Because if you gave me one, I'd totally get up."
"No, but I think I saw a dog turd in here somewhere."
"Yeah, no thanks..." Michael grunted, sitting up.
"Alright, guys. Enough dicking around," Geoff announced as he clapped his hands together a few times. "Time to get up and work on getting back home."
"I hear that. When we get back, the first thing I'm going to do is go home and sleep in an actual bed. This hay is annoying as hell," Jack muttered as he rose to his feet and stretched. Looking towards the door, he let out a loud yawn. "Wasn't Applejack supposed to get us cots or something? Whatever happened to that?"
"You can ask her when we're inside," Geoff said, walking towards the door.
"Right behind you, Geoff!" Gavin chuckled lazily as he walked after his friend.
"Why are you getting up?" Michael asked irately. "You already did what you were supposed to do. You could just sleep in."
"Where's the fun in that?" Gavin countered with a smile. "I want to sit around and watch you guys do some work."
"That's what you always do, Gavin," Michael hissed.
The five men made their way out of the barn, giving a curt nod as they passed a working Big Mac and Winona. Once they came into the farmhouse, they found that the table in the kitchen had several plates with some food on them. But something about the food made them pause. Applejack, who was standing by the other entrance to the kitchen, smiled at them.
"Wait, are those actual sandwiches?" Jack asked dumbly, not expecting there to be anything to eat besides apples on the farm.
"Yup. Ah figured y'all might get tired of eatin' apples every day, so Ah managed to rustle up some other stuff for ya."
"Thank you, based God," Ray said, being the first to sit at the table.
"And don't worry, Ah left out the hay. Ah also figured y'all would be tired of that seein' as y'all have been sleepin' on it," she chuckled as everyone else began sitting around the small table.
"Yeah, about that. Didn't you say you were going to hook us up with something other to sleep on?" Michael asked. "Not that I mean to rush, it's just that stuff is uncomfortable as hell."
"Ah'll look around for some stuff while y'all eat," she promised, then nodded at the table. "Now go on ahead and start diggin' in. Breakfast is th' most important meal of th' day.
As soon as Applejack left, the gang began to eat their food. Happy that it wasn't apples, they quickly devoured what they had in front of them, leaving them to wait for Applejack.
"You know, I could get used to the farm life," Gavin said after a few minutes of silence.
"If you ran a farm, your crops would die within minutes," Michael grunted.
"I didn't mean running a farm. I just meant sitting here, you know? Get some fresh air. Really helps clear out your shnoz when you're feeling congested," he chuckled, scratching the bridge of his nose.
"There, put some stuff in the farm for ya. Had a few extra pillows and covees layin' around for guests," Applejack said as she walked back into the room before Michael could counter Gavin. As Ray and Gavin thanked her with a smile, she noticed that the others were looking tired. "So what're y'all plannin' for today?"
"I have to try to figure out a way to make a little pony fly in the air, and I have absolutely no idea how the hell I'm supposed to do that," Geoff groaned as he rubbed his face, knowing he was going to be getting a lot of headaches during his time here.
"Maybe you shouldn't have said you'd do it, Geoff," Gavin piped.
"I have to do it because I'm the smartest of the five of us," he grunted, glaring at Gavin. "I don't really think you guys would be able to handle this. Takes a lot of thinking power. Something that none of you really have."
"Right, the smartest," Jack snorted, rolling his eyes. "Maybe I can try giving you a little help with that. As long as I don't actually help you help her fly, I think I can help you brainstorm some ideas."
"I don't know..." Geoff muttered. "You should go help that Rarity chick with her problem."
"Okay, I really just don't want to measure fabrics yet," Jack grunted. "I'm way too tired and I think I have a small hangover from last night."
"Just as good, Ah suppose," Applejack piped. "Sometimes Rarity likes t' get more of her beauty sleep, so she might not even be up yet. Your best bet is t' wait until th' afternoon to go an' see her."
"Great," Jack sighed with a breath of relief. "So what do you say, Geoff? Need any help brainstorming?"
"Sure," Geoff said with a shrug. "Probably would be good to get some ideas going because I'm drawing a blank. And as long as it isn't Gavin or Michael suggesting ideas, then I'm happy."
"Use a catapult, Geoff!" Gavin said happily, not taking Geoff's remark to heart.
"Hey, Applejack. Do you think Fluttershy is awake now?" Michael asked, taking a bite out of the large apple.
"Probably, yeah," she said with a nod. "She always wakes up early t' feed all her critter friends."
"Whelp, then I'm out," he said, snapping to his feet and clapping his hands once. "I want to get this stuff out of the way as fast as I can, that way I can just hang around like Gavin is."
"Oh, I'll come with you," Gavin chuckled, following Michael as he began towards the door.
"Oh no you don't," he growled, pushing Gavin away. "I don't want you setting any of the animals on fire or something equally as stupid that you're bound to do."
"Yeah, but I don't want to hang out with Geoff because Jack is going to be with him," Gavin said sarcastically.
"Hey!" Jack snapped angrily.
"I see your point. But why not Ray?" Michael countered.
"Because he's counting apples. Sounds about as interesting as... well, counting apples, I suppose," Gavin said with a toothy smile. When Michael shook his head and turned around, Gavin pouted sarcastically. "Come on, I promise I won't do anything to the animals or the ponies."
"Fine, whatever. But if I see you so much as touch an animal, I will get a bear to curb stomp you," Michael sighed as he started towards the door, gesturing towards it.
Gavin boasted a large smile as he walked out the door with Michael, arm around the irritable man's neck.
"Hopefully we won't have to see them for the next four or so hours," Geoff murmured as he looked back to the table.
"I know what you mean. If we're lucky, maybe we won't see them for the whole day," Jack added, rubbing the back of his stiff neck. "So. Any actual ideas forming?"
"Gavin's catapult idea doesn't seem too bad," Geoff replied with a small, sarcastic smile. Shaking his head, he sighed. "Too bad I wouldn't know where to start on that idea. I don't think I could build a huge contraption."
"And you can't use magic either," Ray added, running his hand through his hair. "It's too bad, though. I think you'd look adorable with a unicorn horn, Geoff."
"Thanks, Ray," Geoff laughed. "Would also help if I had wings, too."
"Would help if you had both," Jack said.
"A horn and wings, Jack? That'd be fucking stupid," Ray said with a straight face. "I mean, who do you think Geoff is? A princess? He doesn't even have a crown."
"That's a good idea. When we get back, I'll start wearing a crown around the office to remind you guys who's boss," Geoff said. "Not sure how many princesses had to deal with more than one jester a day without getting them beheaded."
"Speaking of stupid ideas, anything besides the catapult?" Jack chipped in, reminding Geoff to focus. "I'm pretty sure that idea would only work for a few seconds, then it would end horribly."
"I don't know, Jack. From what I've seen, these ponies can crash into the ground going over sixty miles an hour and be perfectly fine. Especially Rainbow Dash. There's a reason the people up in.." Ray started, only to stop when he saw the strange look Applejack was giving him.
"'There's a reason people up in' what, Ray?" Jack asked curiously. Glancing to the side, he saw that Ray was making direct eye contact with Applejack. It then snapped into his head that Ray was talking about the show, but didn't want the farm mare to know. Thinking quickly, Jack slammed his hands onto the table, making the others look towards him. "Hey, Applejack. Got any paper we could use to write down our ideas? It would probably help to keep our thoughts organized, you know?"
"Nah, Ah don't have any paper on me," she said as she shook her head. "Y'all could head on over t' Twi's, though. I'm sure she'd be more'n happy t' give ya some supplies."
"I think we've done more walking here than Jack's done in his entire life..." Geoff snorted, rising out of his chair. "Might as well, though. For once I don't just want to sit around and do nothing. Come on, Jack."
"Right behind you," Jack said, ignoring Geoff's jab.
"Now how 'bout you, Ray?" Applejack asked when the second pair left, leaving the lone Puerto Rican behind.
"I'll get started on counting the apples, I guess," Ray said nonchalantly, standing up to stretch.
"Great. Head on out, Ah'll be out in a sec," Applejack said with a smile.
"Sorry, as much as I'd like you to help me, I'm pretty sure I have to do this solo. Maybe get an achievement out of it, y'know?" he asked jokingly.
"Ah don't think so. Twilight promised t' help me count all th' apples, but she ain't ever said she'd do it by herself. Ah was always goin' t' help her with it, so Ah think that means Ah'm allowed t' help ya as well."
"I'm not going to argue with that," Ray chuckled, strolling towards the door to get started on what he believed would be a very easy day.