Location: Universal stream Equine 612.9 Iota- AKA ‘The Ponyverse’
The gentle light of the moon shined down on the planet below, bathing the silhouettes of the mountain range in a pale glow. Angular roofs and spires jutted off the side of one particularly large mountain as lights from various buildings dotted the city below, highlighting places where the residents had decided to remain awake despite the late hour, or, in some cases, highlighting some of the cities more 'shady' establishments.
At the base of the mountain, a much smaller city was visible. Despite its diminutive size and further distance, one could just make out some of the more prominent buildings, such as the town hall and the giant, hollowed-out tree that served as the town's library.
Coupled together, the two cities made for a very serene landscape...
Not that the scene's lone viewer cared.
Said being was about four stories tall with inky black and deep maroon armor covering its bulky frame. His bright red optic sensors surveyed the picturesque view not for its beauty, but rather out of curiosity for what would become of this land once his plans came to play.
"Hey, Shiftech! GLaDOS needs yah up here!"
Shiftech winced slightly at the voice before beginning to fold in on himself, changing into his vehicle form. In seconds, the distinctive thumping of helicopter rotors filled the air as the bulky flier slowly ascended the mountain. Upon reaching the top he converted back to his robot form, landing on the rocky surface with a THUMP.
"Y'know, Ten, there's a sleeping city a few mountains over that would REALLY hate to be woken up by your shouting." Shiftech chastised.
"Aw, their pathetic organic ears can't hear me all the way over here," Diesel Ten replied, waving his claw-arm dismissively. "And for the last time, call me Dieseltron."
Shiftech studied his ally for a minute. Diesel Ten was unique in that, when Shiftech found him, the living train was already capable of transforming into a somewhat bulky tan robot with a skinny brown right arm formed of the claw that was mounted on the top of his train mode. The ‘trainsformer’, who had recently renamed himself Dieseltron, had just been beaten by his worst enemy- another transforming train named Opthomas Prime- when Shiftech found him. Dieseltron was all too happy to join the larger robot’s inter-dimensional league of evil.
Shiftech continued walking past two more of his allies- a massive Bio-Mechanical being named Teridax and an armored female warrior named Nightmare Moon.
Teridax- better known as Makuta- was a being of darkness and shadow. A fusion of Cybertronian technology with his own bio-mechanical makeup granted him the ability to morph into a massive dragon-like beast that looked like it came straight from the Pit itself.
As for Nightmare, she was similar to Teridax in many ways. Both were beings of darkness, they wished to take revenge on the inhabitants of their home worlds, and they both possessed organic-based alternate modes, Nightmare’s being a winged unicorn known as an ‘alicorn.’ However, in order to increase her versatility, she had also adapted the form of a sleek jet.
As Shiftech walked by Nightmare, he stopped. “So tell me, what is it like to return to your universe of your origin?” he asked without looking at her.
The sinister femme drew in a deep breath before letting it out slowly. “First chance I get… Celestia is dead.”
“Don’t be too cheerful; you might hurt something,” Shiftech muttered with more than a hint of sarcasm.
Continuing on his way, the bulky robot approached another femme who was working on a large machine. Her white armor glistened in the moonlight, causing her skinny form to glow. The large wings on her back coupled with the glowing almost gave her an almost angelic appearance- ironic, considering her murderous tendencies. Upon hearing Shiftech's heavy footsteps, she turned her faceless square head so that her single yellow optic faced him.
"How goes the operation, GLaDOS?" he greeted.
"Quite well, actually," she replied, her heavily synthesized voice carrying a note of enthusiasm. "The Dimensional Quantum Tunneling Machine is ready for testing."
A sinister gleam shone in Shiftech’s optics. "Excellent. Begin the power-up sequence."
GLaDOS nodded before directing her three-fingered hands to an armored orange box. Opening the lid carefully, she withdrew a small, semi-transparent blue cube and inserted it into the DQTM.
The six-story machine hummed to life as GLaDOS typed commands into the interface module.
Behind him, Shiftech could hear his other three allies approaching to watch the show. His cheeks pulled up slightly in a mouthless smile. They were about to witness history in the making.
A brilliant blue glow came from the top of the device. After receiving an approving nod from Shiftech, GLaDOS pressed one final button, firing a blue sphere of energy into the sky.
The gathered robots watched as the sphere rose several hundred feet into the air, emitting a noise that was similar to that of GLaDOS' hand-held Portal Device. The sphere then exploded into what seemed to be a cross between a blue portal and a black hole.
"The interdimensional portal seems stable," the white femme stated. "Now, let's see if-"
She was suddenly cut short by the sound of crackling energy. Looking up, the five robots saw the portal begin to fire bolts of blue lightning through the sky.
"What's going on?!" Shiftech roared.
"Energy from the portal's destination is reacting negatively with the portal itself!" GLaDOS replied, furiously typing commands into the device.
"Destination?" Teridax questioned. "When did you set a destination?"
"I didn't!" came the reply. "The portal seems to have opened up to a random destination!"
A massive bolt of energy suddenly erupted from the rapidly expanding vortex, arcing through the air toward the smaller town at the base of the nearby mountain. As it traveled, small portions of energy broke off from it, materializing into what seemed to be several smaller vortexes that spanned the distance between the portal and the smaller town.
"Was that supposed to happen?" Dieseltron asked, drawing annoyed looks form his comrades.
"Well, on the bright side, at least the original portal seems to have calmed down," Nightmare stated.
Shiftech carefully studied the new portals that had appeared in the distance. That energy bolt had no doubt given off some major energy readings, and possibly even caused some interdimensional anomalies.
And he knew just who liked to investigate both of those things.
"Troops," he stared, "Prepare yourselves. We may be having some unwanted company very soon..."
Location: Ponyville Library
Twilight Sparkle groaned in annoyance as she pulled her blanket over her head. Insomnia was something that she rarely, if ever, experienced. Yet here she was, curled in a fuzzy purple ball under her sheets, mane horribly unkempt, wishing her mind would just shut up and fall asleep.
The sound of a baby dragon snoring softly pounded against her ears, further preventing her from getting any rest. Outside, the wind caused two tree branches to clack against each other. On top of that, somepony’s squeaky shutters could be heard plain as day.
The purple unicorn groaned in annoyance as she put her pillow on top of her head in an attempt to drown out the noise. She never noticed just how many sounds went on during the dead of night, and it was not a discovery she was happy to make.
Rolling over, she threw a quick glance out the window- then gasped, almost falling off the bed in surprise.
There, in the sky high above Ponyville, was some kind of swirling blue vortex.
Mind racing, Twilight knew that her sleeplessness was a result of her strong magical powers sensing the vortex. But what was it? Was it dangerous? And where did it come from?
A brief glance at the clock on her dresser revealed the time to be about two in the morning.
The unicorn sighed to herself as she exited her room and began descending the wooden staircase, already suspecting that her books would likely have little information on ‘swirling sky vortexes.’
Location- Keeper of The AllSpark ship T.R.E.E.H.O.U.S.E.T.R.O.N.
Currently in the rift between universes
The sound of hurried footsteps rang throughout the halls of the ship as a green and black Autobot walked forward at a brisk pace, carefully listening for signs of other bots. Finally, the sound of idle chatter met his audio receptors. Following the sound, he found himself in a what seemed to be a game room where two other robots- one a three-story robot with jet parts on his frame, the other a human-sized mech with green samurai armor appeared to be rapidly typing away at a computer monitor.
"Guys, there you are!" the car robot exclaimed. "Imperion and I have been searching all over for you!"
"If you want us to go on another mission, forget it, Over-Drive," Technosis, replied his jet wings twitching in irritation.
" Yeah, our near- death experience at the servos of a homicidal computer was enough excitement for the month," the green robot, Legatron, added.
"Well, it doesn't seem to have affected you too badly, seeing how you're currently making a flipping VIDEO GAME about it," Over-Drive stated as he pointed to the computer screen that the two robots were working at. Said screen displayed the words 'Trans-Portal,' with the 'o' being a swirling blue vortex. "Besides, I think you're going to like the universe that we're going to..."
"Universal stream Equine 612.9 Iota ?" Legatron asked. "You mean..."
"The Pony Universe," Technosis finished.
Over-Drive smiled. "That's the one."
"I still can't believe you guys didn't tell me you went to this universe in the first place," a tall combiner complained as he readied the ship’s Universe Bridge. "You know how much I love ponies."
"Aw, let it go, Imperion," Technosis said, "You and Over-Drive were on another mission at the time."
"Besides," Legatron started, "YOU can't do THIS!" His samurai armor then folded away, and was replaced by slightly skinnier panels, including a tail and what looked like spiky hair on his head.
Technosis peered closely at the miniscule mech. “Since when do ponies have jet parts?”
At first Legatron had no idea what his friend was talking about. “OH, you mean the cockpit on my chest. Yeah, I modified my pony form so I could also change into a jet.”
Technosis rolled his optics. “Yes, we are a group of universe-traveling, world-saving robots that no one has heard of. Let’s make our first impressions by being pony-slash-jet triple changers!”
Legatron’s eyes narrowed to blue slits. “HEY! They’re not FIRST impressions if we’ve already met the locals!”
The white, three-story robot faltered for a moment. “Good point.”
“If you two are done exchanging pointless dialogue, we’re ready to go,” Imperion Maximus announced.
“Alright, time to hang out with the ponies again!” Legatron cheered as a Universe-spanning Transwarp field materialized in front of him.
“Remember -” Technosis started.
“I know, I know, mission comes first, blah-di-blah.” Excitedly, Legatron activated his jetpack before plunging into the massive ball of energy.
“Wow, he’s even more immature than you are,” Imperion said.
“Shut up,” the jet robot replied as he followed his comrade through the portal.
Over-Drive was about to do the same when Technosis suddenly came flying backwards out of the Transwarp field. The sportscar Autobot didn’t have any time to react before he was flattened by the taller mech.
Before anyone could voice any confusion, the Transwarp field dissolved.
“WOAH!” Imperion exclaimed. “What the heck happened?!”
Painfully, Technosis lifted himself off of Over-Drive. “Dunno. I was following Legatron when suddenly I was thrown backwards by some invisible force.”
“Legatron!” Over-Drive exclaimed. “Did he make it through?”
“I think so,” Technosis replied, a tone of worry evident in his voice.
A high-pitched beeping drew the two robot’s attention to the control panel that Imperion was working on.
“Bad news,” the combiner started, “Something in the universe is blocking inter-dimensional travel.”
“But we got the bridge open!” Over-Drive pointed out.
“A complete fluke,” Imperion replied. “And it’s highly likely that the only reason Legatron made it through was because he’s so dang small.”
After a moment of silence, Technosis spoke up. “So… what do we do?”
“The only thing we can do,” Imperion started. “Wait. Wait and hope…”
Location: Outskirts of Ponyville
A blue sphere of energy appeared in an otherwise-normal landscape before spitting out a small-green figure and promptly disappearing.
Said figure was sent bouncing down a steep hill, screaming all the way, until he landed in a sizeable puddle of mud.
Legatron wiped the sticky ground off his optics. “Well, THAT coulda’ gone better. Nice work, Imperion.” Upon receiving no reply, he glanced around. “Imperion? Technosis? Over-Drive? Anybot?”
Still no answer.
Standing up, he tried his commlink, only to receive static.
“Odd,” he simply stated. “If this is some kind of joke, I’m going to literally kick your guys’ butts with my-” His optics widened as he realized that, in his excitement, he had completely forgotten to bring his Transtector, a suit of normal-sized Transformer armor that allowed him to stand head-to-head with other Cybertronians. “Well, this bites.”
It was then that he noticed a strange energy vortex in the sky. “Oooh, what have we here?”
Deciding that the portal was too far off to properly observe, he morphed into his pony form and began galloping to the north- the direction to Ponyville.
Abruptly he came to a stop, his hooves digging into the ground in an attempt to stop his momentum.
“Wait a second.”
He threw a glance to his back, where a pair of wings sat neatly folded.
Unfurling the appendages, Legatron took to the skies.
The silence of the library’s bedroom was broken by a high-pitched yawn. A scaly purple head popped out from under a fuzzy blue blanket, blinking sleepily.
“Aw, man, and I was having the best dream!” Spike complained as he hoisted himself out of his basket-bed. “Oh, well. Maybe one day I’ll finally dream that Super-Spike gets that kiss from Rarity-”
His stubby hand clamped over his mouth as he realized he had said that out loud. Thankfully, Twilight was nowhere to be seen.
Yawning and stretching some more, the baby dragon slowly dragged himself across the room and down the stairs. It came as no surprise to him when he found Twilight surrounded by a half dozen books magically suspended in the air.
“Spike! Thank goodness you’re up!’ the purple unicorn exclaimed. “We have a lot of work ahead of us.”
“But Twilight, I just went grocery shopping yesterday!” Spike complained.
“I wasn’t talking about that,” she replied. “By the way, you bought a package of twenty cookies then, and it was sealed when we went to bed. As of about two in the morning, the box was opened and only eighteen cookies were left. Care to explain?”
“Uh… well… I…” Spike glanced around the room, avoiding any eye contact with the unicorn. “Wait a sec- you were up at two in the morning?”
Twilight nodded as she took a sip of coffee from a magically-hovering mug.
Spike’s face assumed an annoyed expression. “Twilight, why in Equestria did you-”
“I take it you haven’t looked out the window lately?” The mare interrupted, not even bothering to look up from her books this time.
Spike cocked an eyebrow. “Say what now?”
“Just look out the window, Spike,” she replied in an irritated tone.
Still befuddled, the baby dragon complied, walking to the window and pulling back the curtains.
His jaw nearly hit the floor.
“Wha… what is…” he stammered, pointing at the swirling blue vortex in the clouds.
“That’s what I’m trying to find out,” Twilight replied. “But so far all I’ve figured out is that ponies know very little about sky portal things.”
The dragon turned away from the window. “Well, did you think an answer was going to come bursting through the door?”
As if right on cue the front door swung open, revealing a panting green pegasus with black and silver striped hair.
“Wow, I should have seen that coming,” Spike admitted, knowing how cliché things tended to get around Ponyville.
Twilight, meanwhile, was staring wide-eyed at the newcomer. “Legatron?”
“Twi… light…” the pegasus panted. “Thank… goodness…” He paused for a moment to catch his breath. “Man, these organic wings use a lot of energy…”
The purple unicorn walked closer to the pegasus. “Oh my gosh, it’s really you!”
“The one and only!” he exclaimed. “How long has it been?”
“Too long,” Twilight replied. “I was hoping that-”
“Wait,” Legatron interrupted, lifting a hoof (and almost losing his balance). “I meant that literally. Universe travel sometimes means time travel. How long has it been?”
“OH! It’s been about five months,” the unicorn replied.
“Huh, it’s been only four for me.” He shrugged. “Oh well, close enough. Wait, did I just shrug? Didn’t know ponies could do that.”
The purple unicorn giggled at this. “Sounds like still you have a lot to learn about being a pony.”
The pegasus rolled his eyes. “Well, right now I’d prefer a lesson on why the horizon is currently lined with swirling blue portals.”
Twilight’s smile fell. “I was… kinda hoping you could tell US.” Her brow furrowed. “Wait, ‘portals’? As in plural?”
The pegasus nodded- the proceeded to split apart. Twilight cried out in surprise before she realized what was really happening. Seconds later, the pegasus pony had been replaced by a bipedal robot.
Wasting no time, Legatron tapped an odd-looking protrusion on his torso that Twilight was sure wasn’t there last time. Beams of like burst from his chest and shone on the floor.
Twilight gasped in awe as the light beams formed a three-dimensional picture of Ponyville and the area around it.
“Holograms,” Legatron smirked. “Quite handy, they are.” He extended a finger towards a series of five blue dots hovering above the pictures. “I did a quick fly-over before coming here, where I found there were a total of five portals stretching from this mountain-” he motioned to a particular peak from what Twilight recognized as the Canterlot mountain range, “To this forest.”
“Isn’t that the Everfree Forest?” Spike asked with a shudder. Twilight nodded in response.
“So, what do we do about them?” the unicorn asked.
Legatron shrugged. “You got me.”
Twilight blinked in surprise. “You don’t have a plan?”
“Hey, I have a commlink that doesn’t work all of the sudden, scanners that aren’t doing much better, and no back-up,” the robot replied, counting out the problems on his fingers. “I think the best thing we could do is talk to that Sun Princess of yours. She seems to know her stuff.”
Twilight nodded before turning to her assistant. “Spike, take a letter.”
The dragon responded by fetching a quill and a sheet of paper.
“Dear Princess Celestia,” Twilight started, “As you probably are aware, several mysterious vortexes have appeared in the skies above Ponyville and Canterlot. While my research has yielded little results, I am happy to report that Legatron has returned to our world, and is willing to help us solve this problem. Unfortunately he is without backup or communications with his friends, leaving him with little idea on how to solve this problem. It has been suggested that putting out heads together and pooling our resources and knowledge may yield results. With this in mind, I wish bring my friends to Canterlot to-”
“Wait, we’re going to Canterlot?” Spike interrupted. “Aww, does this mean I have to pack?”
Twilight glared at the dragon. “Just keep writing.
“Fine,” he replied with a roll of his eyes.
The unicorn cleared her throat. “I wish to bring my friends to Canterlot so that we may converse with you in person on how to best deal with this situation. Your faithful student, Twilight Sparkle.”
Rolling up the scroll, Spike breathed a jet of green flame on it, causing it o dissolve into a cloud of sparkling dust and swoop out an open window. “Now do I have to start packing?”
Twilight nodded, prompting a groan from her scaly assistant as he ascended the stairs.
“In the meantime, we should find my friends,” the unicorn stated.
She turned to see Legatron carefully examining a blown-up hologram of one of the portals. “Legatron?”
The robot snapped out of his trance. “Huh? Wha?”
“I said we should go get my friends,” she repeated. “What are you looking at?”
Legatron waved a hand dismissively. “Nothin’. It’s just…” he rested his hand on his chin. “These portals look… kinda familiar… Anyway, you’re right. We should probably go find your friends. Chances are we’re going to need that magic jewelry you used last time.”
“You mean The Elements of Harmony,” Twilight corrected.
The green mech shifted back into his pony mode and began trotting towards the door. “Yeah, those too.”
Rolling her eyes, Twilight followed her friend out the door. For a second he disappeared from view, until she realized he was flying.
“C’mon, hurry up!” he prodded. “Time’s-a-wastin’!”
“Alright, I’m coming,” she replied. “Patience is a virtue, y’know.”
“Well, I hate patience AND I hate virtues,” he complained as he zipped towards Sweet Apple Acres.
Sighing to herself, Twilight quickened her pace.
"Twitchy tail!" A blob of pink fluff appeared out of nowhere.
"Pinkie?!" Twilight jumped back. "What-?"
"Something's gonna fall! Something's gonna fall!" The party pony exclaimed.
“Pinkie, what are you talking about?” Twilight prodded.
The sudden yell drew the ponies’ attention to the right-
Where they saw a mass of metal about to crush them.
Location: Universal Stream Malgus 1110.30 Iota
An unmanned orbital drone ship that resembled brown space shuttle roared through the skies over 21st century Detroit. Close behind it was what appeared to be a bulky, three-story robot wielding an axe, suspended in the air by a massive jetpack.
Optimus Prime narrowed his optics at the vehicle he was chasing. While it appeared to be a harmless ship, he knew what it truly was- Blastoff, one of the few Deceptions that still plagued the organic planet Optimus had come to know and love over the past three years. Even worse, Blastoff was a Combaticon. Based on what Ratchet had told him, that particular Decepticon subgroup took out more Autobots during the Great War than any other.
Shoulder cannons rotating into place, the red and blue Prime took careful aim. His fists clenched tighter; an odd feeling, knowing that the fists weren’t really his. Rather, they were a part of a set of upgrade armor known simply as the “Powermaster.”
Optimus shook the thoughts from his processor. He HAD to stay focused. It was the only way that-
A surge of energy blasted through Prime’s frame, causing him to cry out in surprise. Some kind of crackling blue vortex had opened up in front of him, and he’d flown right into it.
Desperately, Optimus gunned the Powermaster’s jets. However, the attempt at escape was ultimately futile as the heroic Autobot vanished into the closing portal.
Up ahead, the space shuttle stopped in midair before morphing into a brown, gray and purple mech. His goateed face turned towards the vortex right as it was closing, meaning the Decepticon only saw a brief flash of light before Optimus Prime disappeared.
“…I guess that’s one way to skin a Prime,” he mumbled as he morphed back into his alternate mode. “If only I had any idea what I DID…”
Optimus found himself tumbling through some kind of tunnel made out dark blue clouds. Bolts of lightning appeared for brief moments before dissipating. He cried out in pain as one of them struck him in the back.
Gasping in shock behind his mouthplate, the Prime continued through the strange vortex until he was overcome by an intense light that made a supernova look like a dying candle.
The feeling of being in free-fall made him suddenly aware that gravity had resumed its hold on him; a feeling he only just now realized had been absent in the tunnel. Still dazed from the lightning, the Cybertronian flailed helplessly as he fell. Finally, he hit the ground with a deafening BOOM.
For a few precious minutes he just lied there, trying to regain his sense of reality, direction, consciousness, and just about everything else. After what seemed like hours his foggy vision cleared.
Groaning, the mammoth mech sat upright. Examining his surroundings he saw he had landed in some kind of dark, dank forest. Ominous looking trees sprouted up all around him, almost completely obscuring the sun. The darkness it created seemed to stretch on for eternity in all directions.
With a soft click, Optimus’ vehicle mode cab light switched on. He rotated his torso to allow the light to flow over the expansive landscape, but all he could see was more trees.
“Where the Pit am I?” he wondered aloud and he stood up. The pain from his unwilling experiment with lightning had dulled by now, allowing him to move freely. Drawn up to his full height, his head peaked above the canopy. Above he saw fluffy clouds that seemed to be hovering mere meters above the forest. Glancing around, he spotted a place where the trees ended and green hills began.
Encouraged, Optimus attempted to activate his jetpack. The sound of sputtering rockets met his audio receptors.
“Slag it!” the mech cursed, realizing that the armor had taken damage when he had been struck. With a grunt of annoyance Optimus Prime then attempted to morph into his vehicle mode.
Unfortunately, try as he might, the Powermaster armor would not unlatch itself from his torso. He was about to curse again when he realized that it was probably some kind of miracle that he had any control over the Powermaster’s arms and footpads. There was no telling how difficult escape would be if he lost control over his own limbs.
Sighing with defeat, he settled for walking. However, the action was much easier said than done. With his head above the trees he was unable to see where the tree trunks were located, allowing his legs to bump into them as much as they pleased.
“Okay, now THIS is getting ridiculous!” the Prime shouted as he crouched down. Slowly but surely, he made his way toward the clearing.
Several minutes and more than a few broken tree branches later, Optimus was free of the cursed forest. Breathing a quick sigh of relief, he continued to examine his surroundings.
Hills blanketed with lush green grass rolled over the landscape, stretching to the horizon. A clear river leading into the forest was visible, as was a crude dirt path.
Optimus’ gaze followed the path until he noticed a small, wooden structure sitting on a hill. He figured it was a house, but it was unlike one he had ever seen in Detroit. Then again, Sari had told the Autobots early on that Earth had a lot more than the massive brick structures seen in the city.
Still, the Autobot figured that even a human living in such a secluded spot would have at least heard of him and his team. Seeing no alternative, he began trudging towards the establishment.
As he neared the house he began to notice an oddly large amount of animal life. The number of tiny critters increased significantly as he drew closer to the building, prompting the Autobot to watch his step.
Carefully stepping over a variety of flower patches and birdhouses, Optimus made his way to the front of the house. Leaning down, he gently tapped his finger on the door.
“There you go, little ones,” Fluttershy said as she poured the contents of a bag of birdseed into a birdfeeder. Within seconds it was flocked with feathery flying friends.
“Now, now; no need to shove. There’s plenty for every- OH!” she squeaked as a brief tremor shook the ground, followed shortly by another, then another, and another…
Fluttershy gulped as the explanation for the tremors occurred to her: footsteps. Really BIG footsteps.
Squawking in fear, the birds abandoned the feeder and retreated into their homes. Several ground-based critters followed suit.
The pink-maned pony gulped as the footsteps drew nearer- then stopped.
For a moment there was nothing but dead silence.
BANG BANG BANG!
Fluttershy literally jumped a foot as something pounded against her front door.
“Oh, dear! What should I do?” she panicked, wondering what kind of behemoth was outside.
Breathing deeply, Fluttershy attempted to calm herself. It was probably just her bear friend, Harry, in a grumpy mood, stomping around.
Then again, since when did bears knock?
Knees trembling, Fluttershy forced herself to the door. She opened it slowly and stepped outside.
“H-hello?” she stammered. There was nobody in sight; the path to her home was empty as far as she could-
Fluttershy’s face paled as she slowly looked up, realizing she was standing between the legs of a three-story metal monster.
“Did you just… talk?” the behemoth asked.
It took the pink-haired pony a moment to find her voice. “Yes…?” she squeaked.
“That’s odd,” the monster murmured to itself. “Sari told us the only organic creatures on Earth who could talk were humans.”
“H-humans?” Fluttershy repeated.
“Yes, humans,” the thing replied. “Are there… any around here?”
Fluttershy shook her head, the only thing she found she was able to move.
“Then perhaps I’m not even on Earth anymore. What is this place called?”
“P-Ponyville, Equestria…” she gulped.
The metal being seemed to cock an eyebrow. “Ponyville-Equestria? Can’t say I recall reading that on any maps…” It knelt down to get a better look at the pony, just now noticing how scared she was. “My name is Optimus Prime. I am an Autobot, a protector of all forms of life. There’s no need to be afraid of me.”
The yellow pegasus gulped again. “M-my name is F-Fluttershy…”
“Nice to meet you, Fluttershy,” Optimus Prime replied. “Would you happen to know where the nearest Space Bridge is located?”
Fluttershy gave Optimus a quizzical look. “I’m afraid not. I’ve never even heard of a bridge in space.”
“No, a Space bridge is-” Optimus paused, deciding an explanation could wait. “Nevermind. But I need to get off this planet somehow and get back to Detroit.”
The pegasus pony was about to ask what a ‘Detroit’ was when she had an idea. “I don’t know how that works, but I DO have a friend who may be able to help you.”
Optimus’ optics lit up. “You do?”
Fluttershy nodded. “Twilight Sparkle. She’s the smartest pony I know. If there’s anyone who might have any idea how to help you, it’s her.”
“Excellent!” the Prime replied. “And where might we find this ‘Twilight Sparkle’?”
“The Ponyville library.” She pointed down the dirt path that led away from her house. “You can’t miss it- it’s inside a big tree.”
“INSIDE a tree? I thought organics only used trees as materials for buildings, not the buildings themselves.” Shrugging, he knelt down, placing his palm on the ground in front of Fluttershy.
At first, Fluttershy shrunk back from the massive metal hand. The thought then occurred to her that the sight of Optimus would likely scare anypony who laid eyes on the metal behemoth. However, if she were to go with him, other ponies might be more accepting of his company.
Hesitantly, the yellow mare climbed onto his hand.
Gently, Optimus lifted his servo to his shoulder. Fluttershy hopped off and took a place next to his head.
The pony emitted a tiny squeak as the robot lurched forward. His heavy footsteps clanked against the ground in an even pattern that matched the slow swaying of his shoulders. Fluttershy was amazed at the distance travelled by each footstep. In one movement of the robot’s legs he could travel a distance that it would take Fluttershy a few minutes to walk herself. In fact, they were already almost at the top of the single hill between her house and Ponyville- a length that it would take her at least ten minutes to walk.
Still, despite her valiant attempts to calm her fears, she still felt her knees shaking. Optimus’ shoulders were easily three stories off the ground- a bit too high for a pony with a case of Acrophobia.
But even she couldn’t deny the feeling of freedom that came with having the wind flow through her mane.
Thump. Thump. Thump. Thump.
Moaning sleepily, Rainbow Dash uprooted two sections of the cloud she was napping on and shoved them in her ears, hoping to block out… whatever the heck that noise was.
THUMP. THUMP. THUMP. THUMP.
Now groaning in annoyance, the blue pegasus shoved the puffy cloud parts harder against her head.
THUMP! THUMP! THUMP! THUMP!
Bolting upright, Rainbow cried out in frustration. What was that noise, and why did it dare interrupt her nap?
Angrily, she thrust her head into the cloud deep enough that it popped out the bottom. She then began furiously searching for the offending noise maker.
“What the…?” Her jaw dropped as she caught sight of a massive blue and red robot. “Not another one of these things.”
Her keen magenta eyes then locked on to a familiar pink and yellow blob on the beast’s shoulder.
Pulling her head back through the cloud, Rainbow gasped. “Oh my gosh, that thing’s holding Fluttershy captive!”
Not wasting another moment, the cyan flier shot into the air in a streak of multi-colored energy. Gracefully, she arced through the air until she was headed straight for the robot’s back.
Optimus and Fluttershy glanced at eachother in confusion as they heard the sudden cry. The Prime was about to ask Fluttershy if she knew what the source of the disturbance was when the timid pegasus vanished in a rainbow-colored blur.
“Fluttershy!” the mech cried in surprise as he scanned the ground for any signs of the pegasus pony.
“Hold it right there, Buster!”
Optimus’ gaze shot up and was met with a fiery stare from a blue pony with a Rainbow mane.
The Autobot’s optics narrowed. “What did you do with Fluttershy?!”
“I ain’t tellin’ you, yah big old bucket a’ bolts!” the blue pegasus snapped.
Optimus faltered for moment before clenching his powerful fists. "I’ll only ask once more: What did you do to Fluttershy?!"
"You're not going to be seeing her again!" the blue pegasus shouted before charging at his face.
Not given time to even consider the implications of the pony's words Optimus raised his arms. However, Rainbow shot past him, possibly in an attempt to distract him.
"Stop!" the robot cried. "I don't want to fight you!"
Naturally not believing a word he said, the rainbow-maned pony adjusted her course so she was circling around the robot's legs. In seconds a makeshift tornado formed around the robot.
That should take care of him, Rainbow Dash thought as she exited the whirlwind and examined her handiwork.
To her surprise, the monster merely stepped out of the swirling vortex, albeit with some difficulty.
"I'm giving you one last chance to stop this!" Optimus shouted.
"Not a chance, rust-brain!" the brash pony replied.
With a click, the Prime's shoulder cannons rotated into place. Fire-retardant foam shot forward, aimed at the pegasus.
Expertly, she avoided the globs.
“HA! You’re going to have to do better than-”
“That’s it, playtime’s over!” Wiping the foam from her face, Rainbow began to descend at an alarming rate. Forehooves pointed in front of her, she aimed for the robot’s torso. Squinting against the wind, Rainbow noticed a transparent cone-shape forming around her. She smiled. Here comes Sonic Rainboom number-
Rainbow suddenly felt herself collide with the machine’s stomach, sending it flying several hundred feet backwards as it cried out in surprise.
On second thought, Rainbooms are over-done nowadays, she thought as she arced into the air, rapidly losing speed as a result of the collision. She landed next to a bush, where a cowering Fluttershy was hiding.
“Don’t worry, Fluttershy!” Rainbow announced. “That dumb ol’ robot won’t give you any more.”
Noticing that Fluttershy was staring at something, Rainbow followed her gaze.
The cyan pegasus face-hoofed as she realized she had just knocked the monster strait into Ponyville.
Twilight tried to move, but found her legs were frozen in place, forcing her to watch helplessly as a mass of blue and red metal descended on her.
A blur of pink filled the purple pony's vision as she felt something collide with her, knocking her several yards away from the falling object. She heard it smash against the ground, shaking her and everything else within a hundred-foot radius.
Rolling onto her back, she found herself staring up at Pinkie.
"Gosh, Twilight, why didn't you put up a shield or something?" the pink pony asked.
Groaning in pain, the unicorn got to her hooves. "I'm just a little... tired."
"Well, you need to get yourself UN-tired," Pinkie said as she pulled a candy bar out of nowhere and offered it to her friend. "I won't always be there to save you, y'know!"
Smiling, Twilight took the candy bar in her telekinetic grip. "Thanks. I'll keep that in mind."
"I take it as though you two are alright?" Both mares looked up to see a green pegasus hovering above them.
"Oh, hi, Legatron!" Pinkie beamed. "What brings you here?"
The pegasus stole a glance at the metal mass that almost smashed them. "I'll give you three guesses." He did a double take as he realized what the mammoth steel object was. "Optimus?"
With a moan, the gigantic mech sat up. "What? Who?"
Legatron quickly converted into his robot form. "Optimus, it's me!"
The Prime's optics widened. "Legatron! What are you doing here?"
"A better question is, what are YOU doing here?" The miniscule mech replied.
"Hold it right there!" A shrill voice cut off Optimus' response.
"Oh, no..." the Autobot moaned.
A familiar rainbow-maned pegasus came into view. "Oh, no! You are NOT ponynapping my OTHER friends, too!"
"Ponynapping?!" Twilight and Pinkie exclaimed in perfect unison.
"'Pony'napping?" Legatron repeated with a glance at Twilight, seeming to be more surprised by the word itself rather than its meaning.
"No!" Optimus interjected. "I'm not-"
"Listen punk," Rainbow interrupted, "I don't know how things work in where YOU come from..."
"But I wasn't-"
"But around HERE, you can't just go around-"
All eyes and optics turned to the source of the voice.
"This is no way to solve a problem!" Fluttershy exclaimed as she shot accusatory glances to first Rainbow, then Optimus. "You two are going to work out your differences in a peaceful and civilized manner, with no yelling, no shooting, and no fighting! Do. I. Make. Myself. Clear?!"
The Autobot and the pegasus gulped and nodded slowly, not daring to defy the yellow pegasus.
"So, you were just carrying Fluttershy?" Dash asked.
Optimus nodded. "She was leading me to Ponyville-Equestria."
The pegasus drooped with guilt. "Aw, man. I thought you were holding her hostage."
"Perfectly understandable," the Prime replied. "I get the feeling you pony-types haven't seen many Cybertronians before."
"Technically they have," Legatron spoke up from his place at Optimus' back, trying to repair the Powermaster armor. "But almost all of the full-sized bots they've seen have tried to kill them."
"Still, I have a hard time believing that no Autobots have ever shown up on a planet as populated and potentially powerful as this," Optimus wondered aloud.
Legatron paused. "Uh, Optimus? This planet isn't exactly... 'accessible' from Cybertron."
The larger robot craned his neck to get a view of the smaller mech. "What do you mean by that?"
"Prime, you're in another UNIVERSE."
Optimus fell silent for a full minute before speaking. "Well, that certainly explains things."
"How did you get here, anyway?" Twilight spoke up.
"I was chasing the Decepticon Blastoff in an aerial battle when I flew straight into some kind of blue energy field," Optimus explained.
"Oh, what kind of energy?" Pinkie Pie inquired. "Like magical energy? Or super-hyped-up-on-too-much-candy kind of energy? Or lightning? Did you get hit by lightning?"
For a moment Optimus could only stare at the hyperactive party pony before his processor caught up to her rapid speech. "No, it was more like that vortex thing in the sky." He answered, pointing to one of the sky portals. "Although I DID get hit by lightning after flying into the portal. That's why I can't fly or transform."
Legatron closed a panel on the Powermaster armor, his work completed. "Well, I'll need more resources before I can get you flying again, but transforming shouldn't be a problem anymore."
Optimus stood up and flexed his arms. He hadn't noticed how stiff they were before the repair. "Thanks. I owe you one."
Legatron waved his hand dismissively. "Don't mention it." He rubbed his chin in thought. "But now there's the problem of getting you back to Detroit..."
"Can't he just go back the through the portal he came here in?" Twilight questioned.
"Yes, throw him BACK into a highly unstable and potentially dangerous vortex of unknown origin," Legatron snapped sarcastically. "Can't see how THAT could possibly go wrong,"
"Sheesh, you don't have to be such a meanie-pants about it," Pinkie piped up.
"Pinkie Pie, I'm a robot," the green mech started, "I don't wear pants, and neither do you."
The puffy-maned pony glanced back at her bare flanks. "Ooooh, good point..."
"So, no one has any ideas on how to get me home?" Optimus asked.
"'Fraid not, Prime." Legatron turned on his commlink, only to hear the unwanted buzz of static. "I got no communications with my team."
"And I'm afraid that I know very little about universe travel," Twilight said. "Though, I get the feeling that our first step towards getting you home will be to terminate those sky-portal thingies."
"Well, how do we do that?" Rainbow inquired.
"Could we use those Elemental Harmony things?" Legatron asked. "They seem like a sufficient dues-ex-machinas to solve this."
"Maybe," Twilight replied, deep in thought. "Though I think I should first inform Princess Celestia of the presence of our new friend."
Optimus glanced at the purple unicorn. "Who?"
"She's like the ponies' Magnus," Legatron explained, recalling the title of the Autobot Supreme Leader.
"I'll send her another letter immediately," Twilight stated before trotting off towards the library.
For awhile, the rest of the assortment of Equestrians and Cybertronians sat in silence.
Finally, Rainbow Dash spoke up. "Y'know, if we're gonna use the Elements, we need Rarity and Applejack."
"On it!" Pinkie exclaimed. In a blur of pink she disappeared, only to reappear seconds later with two other ponies in tow.
"Pinkie!" an orange earth pony with a Stetson exclaimed. "What the hay d' ya'll think you’re doing?"
"Yes, what are we doing here?" a whitish unicorn with an elegant purple mane questioned. "Do you realize how many orders I have to complete before tomorrow?"
Both ponies stopped dead in their tracks when they caught sight of the towering form of Optimus.
"Uhm... hi?" the Autobot offered.
"Pinkie, kindly explain to our friends who the newcomer is so that I don't have to," Legatron requested, lazily reclining in the grass.
"Okie-dokie-lokie!" the party pony chanted as she turned to her friends. "Well, it all started this morning when I was just walking minding my own business when suddenly I spotted Twilight and Legatron and I was about to say 'Hi!' when suddenly my tail started twitching and out of nowhere..."
Pinkie continued babbling even when Twilight returned with Spike, the latter's eyes growing wide at the sight of Optimus.
"Wow, you weren't kidding when you said he was huge!" the dragon stated.
"Focus, Spike," Twilight said as she approached Legatron. "We have a problem."
Legatron nodded. "Yeah, I don't think Rarity and AJ are getting a word of what Pinks is saying..."
The unicorn glanced at her two friends, both of whom looked befuddled beyond belief. "While that is kind of an issue, I was referring to the Princess' response... Or lack thereof."
The green mech, still lying on the ground, cocked an eyebrow. "Come again?"
"Apparently Canterlot has been sealed off for unstated reasons, and all Dragon Fire messages in and out of the city have been halted," Twilight explained. “We only got a response form her first letter telling us to head for Canterlot immediately."
Rolling his optics, Legatron stood up. "Figures. What's the fastest way to Canterlot? Besides flight."
"Train travel," Twilight replied.
Legatron clapped his hands, emitting a metallic clank. "Alrighty, then; sounds like we have a train to catch!"
"...but cocoanut trees didn't grow in that area, so I knew I'd have to import them , but the import fees were SOOOO MUCH, and I didn't have enough-"
"PINKIE PIE!" Twilight exclaimed.
"What?" Pinkie said, stopping her extensive and now very off-topic story for the first time.
"We're going to Canterlot," Twilight stated frankly.
"Oh boy, Canterlot!" Pinkie Pie exclaimed. "We can have a 'Going to Canterlot' party!"
"There's no time for that, I'm afraid," Optimus stated. To the ponies' surprise, his arms, backpack and feet then fell off and merged to form a large box on wheels. Optimus' core then changed into a smaller wheeled box and combined with the larger one to make a huge boxy vehicle.
Noticing the equines' stares, Legatron simply stated "Fire truck."
The Prime’s driver door opened. "I only have enough room in my cab for two of you, so the rest will have to ride on the roof."
"No problem, Prime!" Legatron said as he hopped into the driver's seat. "C'mon, Twilight!"
"Why does SHE get to ride in the front?" Rainbow complained.
"Because she's the only one of you who's been up since two in the morning." Legatron smirked. "Besides, she's my favorite pony."
In the kitchen of sugarcube corner, Mrs. Cake carefully spread a glob a blue frosting over a cupcake.
The entire kitchen suddenly started rumbling, causing a multitude of pots and pans to clatter and clank. She glanced nervously at her husband, Mr. Cake, who seemed to be just as surprised as she was.
Both bakers gasped as a massive metal vehicle rolled up to the building and screeched to a halt.
A familiar blur of pink hopped off the strange vehicle and darted inside.
"Mrs. Cake, I'm going to Canterlot with some alien robot friends to save the universe!" Pinkie Pie announced as she shot upstairs to find her saddlebags.
The two bakers stared at eachother in confusion as the party pony dashed out the door and hopped back onto the vehicle, prompting it to rumble away.
"I think it'll be better if we don't ask," Cup Cake stated.
"Good idea," Carrot Cake agreed as they went back to work as though nothing had happened.
The trip to the train station was uneventful, except for the masses of ponies staring in awe at Optimus' vehicle mode. Legatron found this amusing, seeing how they lived in a world full of more than its fair share of weird happenings.
Finally, Optimus braked in front of the train station, at which point Twilight brought up a very good point:
"How are we going to carry Optimus on the train?"
Legatron waved his hand dismissively. "That's easy. We just-" He stopped in the middle of his sentence and thought for a few seconds. "Actually, I have no idea. Maybe a flatbed car?"
"I can remain in 'Ponyville-Equestria' while you travel to Canterlot," Optimus offered.
"We might have to take that course of action," Twilight replied, "But first things first- we need to figure out when the next train leaves."
"Good idea," Legatron said as he assumed his pony form. "This should be easy enough."
"This may be more difficult than we thought."
The others in the group nodded in agreement with Legatron as they stared at the sign reading 'All trains cancelled until further notice.'
"I guess whatever they closed Canterlot off for is more serious than we thought," Twilight stated.
"How are we gonna get to Canterlot now?" Rainbow questioned from her signature location hovering above the others.
"Wait, I got it!" Legatron exclaimed. "Why didn't I think of it before?"
"What?!" The group of ponies and single dragon asked in perfect unison.
"We don't need a vehicle to take up the mountain- we already have one!" He beamed, pointing to the parked form of Optimus' truck mode. "I mean, firetrucks aren't really intended for long road trips, but it's better than nothing."
The ponies nodded in agreement as they started making their way back to-
"This is an outrage! I swear, this will NOT go unresolved!"
The group stopped dead in their tracks at the sound of the rough male voice that came from around the corner of the train station.
"I swear, I am LITERALLY going to destroy this entire building and everything in it!"
Silently, Legatron converted to his robot form and morphed his arms into blasters.
"Heck, I’m gonna destroy this WHOLE DANG CITY! Do you hear me?! Do NOT walk away, I'm not done with you!"
Legatron swung around the corner, blasters aimed at the offender.
The robot's face fell as he caught sight of the offender. "Oh, you have GOT to be joking..."
Location: Universal stream Versius 111.1 Alpha
A stolen fighter jet tore through the air at breakneck speed. Its pilot, a short man with black hair and slightly grayed skin, thought back to what else he had done that day.
It had all started when the power company had shut off his electricity, claiming he had yet to pay his bills. Claiming he had, in fact, paid, the man had decided to investigate the power company. To his shock he had learned it was being lead by a criminal warlord, who was taking people's money and using it to build weapons. Enraged, the man had stolen a fighter jet intending to use it to terminate the fake power station, destroying the warlord's work in the process
Another normal day in the life of Dan.
The radio crackled to life. "Dan, I'm giving you one last chance to stop this crazy scheme!"
Dan picked up the receiver. "Sorry, Elise, but I can't let this warlord guy just take my money and run!"
"For the last time, Dan, there IS no warlord!” Elise insisted, "And there are no weapons in that power plant."
"How the heck do YOU know?!" Dan replied. "Have you actually LOOKED?"
Elise waited a moment before responding. "That implies that you have been inside the building. So, let's count the number of crimes you've committed today alone: assaulting a power plant owner, stealing a government fighter plane and pilot’s suit with the intention of destroying private property, and now breaking and entering."
Dan rolled his eyes. Before he could respond, however, the plane started shaking in a more violent fashion than one of Dan's favorite TV shows.
"Dan, what are you doing now?!" Elise shouted, having heard the sounds of the plane being nearly rattled apart.
"I-I-I-I'm not doi-i-i-ing anythi-i-i-ing!" Dan said, he voice rattle by the rapid vibrations of the plane.
The stubby man gasped as he realized the cause of the disturbance- some kind of giant, swirling energy vortex in the sky was pulling him in.
"Elise, I'm being sucked in by some crazy sky portal!" he screamed into the mic.
"This isn't time for games Dan!" came the reply.
"I'm not joking!" Dan insisted, panic washing over him as the plane neared the vortex. "It’s trying to eat m-"
The radio suddenly began emitting static.
Dan could only stare like a helpless child as his plane was swallowed up by the vortex.
But not before he whipped out his notebook of things he hates and scribbling down "Swirling sky portals".
Location: Universal stream Equine 612.9 Iota
One of the inter-dimensional portals hung ominously over Ponyville, like a vast, predatory bird...
Without warning, a flaming triangular shape burst from the portal.
In the plane, Dan was absolutely freaking out. Not only had the portal taken him into some weird tunnel made of clouds, but lightning had struck the plane and started a fire.
"C'mon, c'mon!" He panted, feeling around the bottom of the pilot’s seat. "There's got to be a-"
Felling a latch, Dan pulled it. The glass cockpit whooshed open as the seat shot out of the flaming plane.
Screaming like a little girl on Halloween, Dan shot into the air. Within seconds, gravity slowed his ascent. Dan breathed a sigh of relief... until he remembered what comes after you stop flying upwards.
"Oh, son of a-" his cursing was cut off as he plummeted to the ground, resuming his scream-fest.
Frantically, he again searched for a lever or handle on the side of the pilot's chair he was still strapped to. If what he saw in the movies was accurate, there should be something right-
An expansive yellow parachute popped out of the back of the seat. Dan breathed another sigh of relief as his rapid descent was slowed to a crawl.
"Well, that's a relief!" he said to himself. "Now to just sit back as-"
His plans for leisure were suddenly cut short as the chair wacked into the roof of a building and fell over-
-then proceeded to slide down the slanted roof-
"OUCH! OUCH! OUCH!"
-and fall off the two-story building, depositing itself on the ground.
"OUCH! Hey, why didn't the parachute slow my fall off the roof?"
As if to answer his quest, a very torn-up parachute then draped itself over him.
"Dangit!" He cursed, trying to throw the fold of fabric off of him. "Well, at least it can't get any worse!"
Finally, he got the parachute off his head... and found himself face-to-muzzle with a crowd of what looked like multicolored horses.
For a moment, both Dan and the horses just stared at eachother, jaws gaping.
Dan came to his senses first. "What the heck are YOU looking at?!"
Screeching and yelping, the crowd dispersed, the horses disappearing into and around surrounding buildings.
"Well, that solves that!" Dan said, dusting himself off. "But what kind of town is full of rainbow ponies? Am I in a stupid girly theme park or somethi-"
Dan turned around to find himself staring at one horse who hadn't left. She was gray in color with a blond mane at tail. Oddly, one of her yellow eyes seemed to be lazy. Or, rather, both of them were lazy.
"Hiyah, mister!" The beaming pony said.
"Oh my gosh, they TALK, too?" Dan exclaimed.
"Of course, silly!" the bubbly horse replied with a giggle. "All ponies can talk!"
"Talking ponies, huh?" Dan wondered aloud. "Where am I, some kind of little girl's cartoon?"
"I don't know what that is," the crazy-eyed pony said, "But this is Ponyville!"
Dan burst out laughing. "Of all the stupid, unoriginal names! That’s about as dumb as you look!"
His laughter was cut short by sniffling. Turning back to the pony, he saw she was on the verge of tears.
"Hey, now cut that out!"
She sniffled again, tears welling up in her eyes.
"Stop it!" Dan repeated. "I am NOT going to apologize to a stupid pony!"
A single tear ran down the pony's face.
"Alright, FINE!" Dan shouted. "I take it back, just stop with the waterworks!"
The wall-eyed pony instantly stopped crying, her expression changing back to a happy one.
Dan only stared at her for a moment. "OK, that was kinda weird." He glanced around at the colorful buildings that surrounded him. "So, how do I get out of this wacked-out town? All these colors are gonna make my eyes bleed."
The derp-eyed pony faltered for a second. "Well, getting out is easy! You just walk out past the city limit."
"Thank you, captain obvious," Dan muttered, folding his arms over his chest.
"My names not 'Obvious', and I'm not a captain," the pony replied. "I'm Ditzy Doo, but most ponies call me Derpy Hooves."
It took all of Dan's self control (and then some) to prevent himself from bursting out laughing again.
"OK, *snicker* Derpy," the human cleared his throat. "How do I get back to Los Angeles?"
Derpy cocked an eyebrow, giving her a rather hilarious facial expression, considering her derped eyes. "Do you mean 'Los Pegasus'?"
"No, Los Angeles," Dan insisted. "It's in California."
"Cauliflower?" Ditzy asked.
"No, CaliFORNIA!" Dan half shouted. "It's a huge state on the west side of the United States of America."
Ditzy just stared at him with a blank expression.
Dan facepalmed. “Never mind, you gotta airport or something around here?”
More derp-eyed staring.
“ANYWHERE I can get some transportation?!” Dan screamed.
“Well, there’s a train station on the west end of town,” Derpy replied, pointing to the east.
“Train station, huh?” Dan wondered aloud as he fished some money out of his pocket. “Hmm, seventy-three cents. I wonder if ponies are OK with bargaining...”
“Seventy-three bits?!” Derpy exclaimed. “With that much money you could buy tickets for a while FAMILY of ponies!”
“Stuff’s THAT cheap?” the human asked, surprised. “Maybe I should buy an XBox or something while I’m here.”
“Why would you want to buy a box that looks like a letter?” Derpy wondered.
Dan’s looked at the pony in surprise. “You don't have video games here?”
“Video... games?” Ditzy repeated, more confused than ever.
“Television?” Dan asked pleadingly.
“Tell what vision?”
For a moment, Dan stared at the pony in shocked silence. It was a good half-minute before he spoke.
“I have GOT to get out of this crazy-ass town.”
“You there! FREEZE!”
Dan and Ditzy both turned to see several stallions dressed in navy blue uniforms.
“Aw crap, pony cops!” Wasting no time, Dan did the most logical thing possible in this situation.
Run like heck.
“Stop in the name of the law!” The police-ponies shouted, running after him.
“Fat chance!” Dan shouted behind him.
“Did he just call me fat?” one of the stallions asked another.
While they were distracted by his comment, Dan rounded a corner and dove into an empty barrel. Thanks to clichés, the stallions somehow didn't notice and thundered right by him.
The human breathed a sigh of relief. “That was close.”
Dan jumped when Derpy’s voice sounded in the barrel next to his.
“What the heck are YOU doing here?” the short human exclaimed in an accusatory manner. “You could’ve given me away to the CLOPS!”
Derpy’s ears drooped. “W-well i just wanted to help you...”
Seeing how she was again on the verge of tears, and how he didn't want to have a repeat of earlier, Dan conceded. “FINE! Let's just get to the freaking train station already ...which way was it again?”
Derpy pointed to the left.
“Didn't you point the other way earlier?” Dan noticed.
“Oops,” the wall-eyed pony replied. “I’m kind of directionally challenged...”
Dan facepalmed. Of all the ponies he had to run into, it HAD to be one who didn't know left from right. “We’ll just have to find a GPS, then.”
“What’s a ‘gee-pea-ess?’” Derpy inquired.
“AUGH! Don't you ponies have ANY sort of technology?!” Dan roared. “I mean, come on! What year are you guys stuck in?!”
“One-thousand and two,” Derpy replied, not catching his sarcasm.
“One thousand and two?” Realization stuck Dan like a rock. “Oh my gosh, I went back in time!” He clutched his head as his mind reeled. “That’s why there isn't any technology here, and why there aren’t any ponies in two-thousand twelve!”
“Whoa, are you saying you're from the future?!” Derpy exclaimed in giddy excitement.
“It seems that way,” Dan said as she tried to pull himself out of the barrel only to end up knocking it over. “Damn it!”
“And did you say there are no ponies in the future?” Derpy asked, fluttering out of her own barrel with the help of her wings.
Dan crawled out of the wooden storage device and picked himself up off the ground. “Yeah, but they still might be out there somewhere. You never know what could be hiding in the plains of Texas or whatever.”
"Tex-who?" Derpy asked.
"Nevermind," the human replied. "Let's just find a way to the train station without attracting attention."
"Well, you kinda attract attention the way it is," Ditzy pointed out.
Dan examined his hands. "Good point. I need some kind of disguise..."
After a moment of thought, Derpy's face lit up. "Hey, I have an idea!"
"There, perfect!" The clumsy pegasus exclaimed as she examined the massive shipping box before her.
"Ah you shoow abouw dish?" Dan said, his voice muffled by several pounds of packing peanuts.
"Positive!" Derpy exclaimed. "I'll get you to the train station in to time!"
"And you're shtrong enuff to carrwee thuh boxsh?"
Derpy's smile fell. "Oh. Hadn't thought of that." Derpy then got behind the box and pushed, to no avail. Taking flight, she attempted to lift the box. No dice.
"Well, dahngit," Dan said.
A smile returned to Ditzy's face. "Hey, I know! I have plenty of unicorn friends who could lift the box with magic!"
"Unicornsh? Magic?" Dan said from his cramped confines. "Whahever."
"Be right back!" Derpy then took to the air and raced out the door.
Or at least, she tried to make it out the door. Due to her eyesight problems, she first slammed into the wall next to the door.
"Whah wash that? the human wondered.
"Oh, uh, nothing," Derpy blushed in embarrassment, despite the fact that nopony had seen her failure. Trying once more, she darted out the door of the post office.
"Let's see, unicorn, unicorn..." Ditzy muttered as her lazy eyes scanned the landscape before her. Finally, she noticed a mint-colored pony with a cone-shaped protrusion on her head.
"Unicorn!" She exclaimed triumphantly. "Hey, Lyra!"
The mint-green pony looked up from her conversation with a cream-colored earth pony.
"Oh, hello Ditzy!"
"Lyra, I need to ask you a favor!" Derpy said, landing next to the other pony.
Lyra smiled. "Sure thing! Need some music?"
Derpy shook her head. "No, I need a unicorn to help me deliver a big, heavy box to the train station!"
Lyra's smile faltered. "W-well, I don't have the strongest magic, but I can try..."
The wall-eyed pegasus beamed. "Thank you so much!"
The unicorn followed her friend to the post office. "No problem..."
When they arrived in the building, Lyra's jaw fell. "Wow, that IS a big box."
"Heavy, too," Ditzy Do replied. "And fragile."
Lyra gulped before summoning her magic, causing her horn to glow a gold color.
A similar glow encased the box, lifting it a few inches off the ground.
"It's working! It's working!" Derpy cheered enthusiastically.
Lyra panted. "OK, I think I can make it. Where did you say this needed to go?"
"The train station."
Lyra's eye twitched. "As in, all the way across town?"
The unicorn sighed before directing the box out the door. Both ponies then exited the building and began the long trek to the train station. (To Derpy's relief, Lyra knew the way.)
After ten minutes of intense levitating and slow walking in silence, a thought occurred to Lyra.
The wall-eyed pony turned to her friend. "Yes?"
"Why couldn't you just put this thing on a cart?"
Derpy nearly facehoofed, but realized just in time that the action would have caused her to lose her balance.
"Uh, well..." Derpy thought fast. Fortunately, despite her eye condition and naive personality, she had quite a bit of brainpower in her skull. "Well, see... a cart would have been too bumpy. Like I said, fragile contents."
Lyra considered this. "I... guess that makes sense..."
Derpy nodded, breathing a sigh of relief at the same time.
It wouldn’t last long. Lyra, further considering Derpy’s answer, failed to notice a sizeable rock stuck in the ground before her. Naturally, despite all the open space around the rock, the mint-colored unicorn managed to trip on the offending stone.
Still caught up in her thought process, Lyra face-planted into the ground, causing her to lose control of the box. It smashed against the ground, tearing a nasty gash in the side.
“HEY! WHAT GIVES?!”
Lyra’s head shot up as the box spoke to her. Out form it emerged a bizarre bipedal creature with a short, scraggly mane.
“DITZY, WHAT IS THAT THING?!” Lyra shouted, almost having a heart attack.
Before Derpy could respond, Dan balled a fist in Lyra’s face. “What part of ‘fragile contents’ implies you can just throw it on the ground?!”
“G-get your grubby claws AWAY from me!” Lyra shouted back. Despite the brave nature of the words themselves, her voice and facial expression were dead giveaways to her fear.
“They’re not CLAWS, stupid!’ Dan replied as he flexed his fingers in front of the unicorn. “They’re HANDS!”
“H-hands?” Lyra repeated, quickly becoming absolutely fascinated with the alien appendages in front of her muzzle.
“There it is! GET IT!”
“Uh-oh,” Derpy understated as she caught sight of a group of police stallions.
“Damnit!” Dan cussed. “MAKE A BREAK FOR IT!”
He and Derpy then took off running at full speed towards the train station.
“STOP IN THE NAME OF THE LAW!!!” the ‘CLOPS’ insisted, to no avail, as they thundered past a still-dazed Lyra.
It wasn't until the pursuers disappeared from sight before Lyra muttered something to herself.
“Y’know... PANT... it’s weird,” Dan started between labored breaths as he desperately outran his pursuers.
“What’s weird?” Derpy asked from her place flying next to Dan
“Normally by now... PANT...I’d be raging... COUGH... and breaking stuff,” the human replied, almost tripping. “This pony town... HACK... must have some kind... WHEEZE... of natural calming... PANT... effect.”
“Hm. Fascinating,” Derpy replied.
“I just wonder... PANT... if I’m going to... HACK... burst sooner or later...” Dan finished.
It was a second before Derpy spoke again. “Uh, hey, Dan?”
“What... COUGH... is it?”
“Shouldn't we lose the cops instead of lead them to where we’re going?”
A moment of silence followed. “Yeah... PANT... that might be a good... WHEEZE... idea...”
Behind them, the police stallions watched as the gray pegasus and the weird bipedal creature they were chasing darted around a building.
“Don’t lose them!” the lead officer ordered as he and his men rounded the corner. They charged another block in the new direction before stopping.
“Uh, chief? I think we lost them,” a junior officer pointed out.
The chief facehoofed. “Fan out and find them! I want that creature contained NOW!”
“Yes, SIR!” the other stallions barked before splitting up.
Meanwhile, a block back, a human and a pegasus rose up from behind a fruit stand.
“Man, that trick ALWAYS works!” Dan observed.
“Are you complaining?” Derpy asked as the two stood up.
“Whadda YOU think?” Dan replied as they hurriedly made their way towards the train station.
“Probably not,” Derpy replied. “I mean, why would you be complaining of somethi-”
“Sarcasm!” the short human stated as they continued their mad dash.
Fortunately for the two of them, the remaining trek to the train station was uneventful. Dan was mildly surprised at this, seeing how the cop ponies were supposed to be all over the town looking for them.
They must suck at their jobs, Dan concluded as he walked to the ticket booth.
“Are you sure you don’t want ME to buy the tickets?” Derpy said.
“Hey, if I can get tickets at these dirt cheap prices,” Dan motioned to a bulletin board that claimed that all tickets were a mere seven bits, “I’m taking full advantage of it.
“Yes, how can I-” the ticket pony’s eyes went wide when she caught sight of Dan. “Uh... help... you?”
“Yeah, I need a one-way ticket to whoever can get me a thousand and ten years into the future,” Dan said in a perfectly calm tone.
“I-I’m sorry, s-sir,” the ticket-taker pony stuttered. “But all trains have b-been... suspended until further notice...”
“SUSPENDED?!” Dan exclaimed. The fury he’d been bottling up since he arrived in this dang town was finally surfacing, and with a vengeance. “Whaddya MEAN ‘suspended’?!”
The ticket mare gulped. “T-there was an attack on the capital city of C-Canterlot, and th-they’ve shut down all train t-travel u-until it gets resolved...”
Dan’s face reddened from sheer fury. "This is an outrage! I swear, this will NOT go unresolved!"
“P-please, sir,” the ticket pony said, her eyes shrinking in fear. “I-If you could just-”
"I swear, I am LITERALLY going to destroy this entire building and everything in it!"
“B-believe me, if it was up to me the trains would be up and run-”
"Heck, I’m gonna destroy this WHOLE DANG CITY! Do you hear me?!” He noticed the ticket pony shrinking back. “Do NOT walk away, I'm not done with you!"
He was about to unleash the rest of his fury when what looked like a green bipedal robot jumped around the corner. It hands were replaced with what seemed like laser blasters.
The robot’s angered expression changed to one of exasperation. “Oh, you have GOT to be joking...”
Dan realized he was staring with his jaw hanging open. It took him a moment to find his voice. “OK, if ponies don’t even have TV’S, how the HECK do they have ROBOTS?!”
The green mech’s blasters retracted and were replaced with hands. “I wasn’t pony-built. Actually, I wasn’t anyone-built. I am Legatron- Keeper of the AllSpark, universe traveler and protector of the innocent.”
Dan tilted his head. “A universe traveling robot in the past? Weird.”
Legatron stared at him in confusion. “The past? No, no, no- this isn't the past.”
“Did you come here through some sort of blue portal?” Legatron asked.
The robot snapped his fingers. “There you go. You’re not in the past; you’re on another planet in another universe relative to your own.”
“And HOW is this possible?” Dan inquired.
“I’m... actually not so sure,” Legatron admitted. “But me and some friends were on our way to find the source of the disturbance. You’re welcome to tag along, provided you want to get back home.”
“Heck YEAH I wanna get home!” the human exclaimed. “All these bright candy colors are giving me a headache. Plus I’m kinda being chased by-”
“THERE IT IS!”
“Aw, damn!” Dan swore as several police ponies trotted into the station.
“Contain it before it escapes!” a very angry police chief ordered.
“You didn’t by chance rob a bank or anything, did you?” Legatron asked, optics darting between the rapidly approaching cops and the human.
“NO! All I did was parachute out of a flaming fighter jet!” Dan insisted. “Then these guys showed up and tried to arrest me!”
A unicorn officer fired a bolt of magic at Dan that turned into a rope in mid-air. However, before it could reach its target, it was sliced in half.
Legatron converted his laser sword back into his hand. “Easy, there boys.”
“Look, it’s another one!” A pony cop shouted. “And it’s wearing metal armor!”
“HEY! Who are you calling armor?!” Legatron snapped.
The police ponies stopped dead in their tracks and stared at a teary-eyed Derpy.
“Look, that’s the pony the first monster was holding captive!” a bulky officer stated.
“I wasn’t being held captive!” Derpy insisted. “And Dan’s not a monster! He didn't do anything wrong!”
“He resisted arrest!” the chief pointed out.
“What were you trying to arrest him for in the first place?” Legatron inquired.
None of the cops had an answer.
“See, this is all just a BIIIIG misunderstanding,” Derpy continued. “Dan showed up here on accident- that’s nothing to arrest him for! And sure he looks different, but so do I! Look at my eyes.” She made her eyes look more derped than usual. “They're different from everypony else’s! Are you gonna arrest ME for that?”
The police colts shuffled awkwardly.
“Just because someone looks different doesn't mean they’re bad,” the wall-eye pegasus restated. "And-"
"OK, OK, we get it!" The chief exclaimed. "We're not going to arrest him for being different."
Derpy beamed. "Good!"
"We're going to arrest him for threatening to destroy the city."
The pegasus' ears folded back. "Oh."
"Actually, officer, we kind of need him," a familiar female voice stated.
"Oh, sure, Twilight, pick NOW to come help out!" Legatron sarcastically spat.
Twilight look at him in annoyance. "I thought you had things taken care of."
"I did," Legatron retorted. "It doesn't mean you can't come and speed things up!"
The unicorn rolled her eyes before looking to the police chief. "I'm terribly sorry about this, sir, but we seem to be having problems with alien life forms showing up in Ponyville. Princess Celestia has ordered me and my friends to bring them to Canterlot to attempt to send them back to their homes and try to stop any more from showing up."
"Do you have proof of this?" the chief asked.
"Spike!" Twilight called.
Seconds later, the chubby dragon was offering a scroll to the police chief.
The stallion unicorn took it in a telekinetic grasp as she carefully scanned the paper. Though it didn't make specific mention of taking any and all aliens to the capitol city, it still specifically stated that Twilight Sparkle was to take her friends to Canterlot.
"Alright, fine," the chief said he returned the scroll to the dragon. "You're good to go. Although I don't see how you're going to get there without train travel."
Twilight took the parchment in her own magical grasp and carefully rolled it up. "Oh, I have my ways..."
"So, what's going on here?" Dan asked, thoroughly confused.
"We're going to visit the ponies' ultra-powerful leader to see if she can send you and other aliens home," Legatron explained.
"There's OTHER aliens here, too?"
Dan was silent for a moment. "At this point I honestly wonder if I'm dreaming."
"You only now thought of that?" Legatron joked as he made his way back to Optimus' truck form.
Dan muttered something under his breath before turning to Derpy. "Are you coming along?"
Derpy shook her head. "As much as I want to, I have duties to attend to here. Besides, I have to apologize to Lyra for scaring her. But best of luck getting home!"
"Suit yourself!" Dan snickered as he followed Legatron. "Heh, 'duties'..."
"Well, this day has been just plain weird," Dan stated. "I'm in a world full of disgustingly happy ponies whose multicolors make my eyes want to puke, and I'm riding on a firetruck that turns into Optimus Prime."
The ponies nodded in agreement. Even for them, this day had been a particularly strange one, as they now found themselves on top of Optimus' firetruck form.
"But are our colors REALLY that horrid?" Rarity inquired.
Dan shrugged and leaned back against Prime's ladder. "Depends. White and purple go together okay, I guess. But some of the random ponies in the town and even the town itself gave me a headache."
"How does it give you a headache?" Pinkie asked. "I mean, all the colors in town are so bright and pretty! They're so cheerful, and they always remind me that I have wonderful, caring friends, and.."
Pinkie continued to rant as Dan leaned towards the others and whispered, "Is she always like this?"
Rainbow, Rarity, Applejack, Fluttershy and Spike nodded.
Dan clutched his head in annoyance. "I am going to need one HECK of a dose of aspirin..."
"So, what are human cities like?" Twilight asked eagerly.
Optimus paused for a moment before answering. "Well... the city I was in was a particularly large metropolitan area that thrived primarily on manufacturing..."
Twilight eagerly scribbled notes down in her notebook, gobbling up the information like Pac-Man does white dots.
Sitting in the driver's seat, Legatron chuckled at the purple unicorn's antics. Her small form had been curled up in Optimus' passenger seat for the past half hour, asking the Autobot questions about anything and everything the whole time.
The green mech's thoughts were interrupted by what he thought looked like a flash of light in the sky.
Suddenly, what appeared to be a space ship slightly bigger than Optimus' truck form broke through the clouds, headed straight for them.
Location: Universal Stream Rangerous 902.2 Alpha
It had started out like any other Space Ranger mission. Investigate reports of pirates stealing spaceship parts. What Buzz Lightyear and his crew hadn't expected was the pirates' utterly massive spaceship being equipped with a tractor beam and capturing their ship.
"Well, a fine mess we've gotten ourselves into this time," a blue-skinned, redhead female Space Ranger muttered from inside the jail cell she was locked in.
"This isn't the time for complaining, Mira," Buzz Lightyear said from another cell as he fiddled with a bracelet-like 'armor inhibitor' the pirates had placed on his arm to prevent his space suit from operating.
"Don't worry, guys, I'm sure XR will be able to get us out of here," a massive red alien ranger named Booster said. "I don’t even want to think about what kind of horrible things those space pirates are doing to him right now..."
"Oh, now THIS is completely unfair!" XR, a short robot Space ranger, exclaimed as he examined the maid's outfit that the pirates had attached to him.
"Quit yer bellyachin' and fetch me a drink, lassie!" A muscular, four-eyed pirate ordered.
"In case you haven't noticed, I'm a GUY!" XR shouted as he headed for the tavern.
"Ay, yer a robot!" Another pirate, this one a yellow slug-like creature, pounded his fist on a table. "Ye don't exactly be havin' much in the way of gender!" The rest of the pirates in the room burst out in hearty laughter.
"Oh yeah, well..." XR trailed off as he entered the tavern. "Oh man, he has a point..."
Still thinking about the awkwardness of the situation, the three-foot robot rolled on his tank-tread like feet past several barrels of liquor.
The robot paused for a moment, then back up. Had he just seen a...
His cylindrical head turned to a face of joy when he noticed a computer console behind one of the barrels.
Whistling innocently, he started preparing a drink with his right hand while a cable extended from his left and clicked into the access port on the console.
Schematics of the ship's systems and build flashed across the small robot's vision. Quickly, he hacked the controls of the jail cells his friends were trapped in, simultaneously rigging a number of doors to open. This would allow them to escape to the weapon storage room. Unfortunately, he couldn’t seem to get any communications out to Star Command.
"Perfect!" Beaming, the robot pumped his left fist into the air as the cable retracted. "Buzz is gonna be so proud!"
The feeling of liquid pooling around his feet drew XR's attention to the cup he was filling. The goblet was overflowing, causing the foul liquor to spill over the floor.
"Darn!" XR made a sour face as he inspected his new clothing. "I got beer on my apron!"
Buzz looked up from his fiddling with his wrist device to see his cell door swinging open.
"Huh, guess we're on parole," Mira joked as she stepped out of her cell.
"This has to be XR's doing!" Booster exclaimed as he squeezed through the three-sizes-too-small doorway.
An access hatch whooshed open to their left. Buzz expected a horde of pirates to stream through, but to his surprise, all that was visible was the hallway.
"Come on, team," he waved as they hurried through the open door.
"Now what?" Booster asked, glancing down the hallway in either direction.
The sound of another door opening drew their attention to the left.
"Let's move!" Buzz pointed before darting through the opened walkway.
Suddenly, a glass dome with arms and legs appeared in their way.
"XR!" Booster exclaimed, running up to the stubby robot. "Oh, boy are we glad to see- uh, what are you wearing?"
XR grunted. "Space pirates have no sense of decency."
"We can talk about the pirates' sense of fashion later," Buzz said. "Right now we have to find a way out of here."
"Gotcha' covered," XR said with an overconfident expression. "I rigged the doors in this place to open in a way that will lead us right to the weapons stash!"
"The weapons stash?" Mira asked, raising an eyebrow. "Why not the docking bay? I mean, we haven't seen any pirates so far, so chances are we don't actually need to fight our way out."
XR's smile dropped like a meteor. "Well... I... was kinda rushed..."
"Never mind that." Buzz motioned to an open door. "Let's just get to the guns and go from there."
Moving as swiftly and silently as possible (which wasn't too well in Booster's case), the four armor-clad Rangers found the weapons stash.
XR let out a long whistle as he examined the expansive array of blasters, crossbows, grenades and spears laid out before them.
"Careful, now," Buzz ordered as he picked up and inspected a bulky laser pistol. "One wrong move and this place'll go up like alcohol-based hand sanitizers in a campfire."
"Hey, I got an idea!" XR said as he reached for a laser staff. He carefully waved it towards Booster's wrist, frying the armor inhibitor.
"Awesome!" Booster exclaimed as his suit's electrical systems came back online.
XR nodded as he repeated the action on his other two friends.
"Alright, Rangers, let's move out!" Buzz barked, stashing a pair of laser pistols on his hips and picking up a concussion rifle.
Mira followed, storing twin laser staffs on her back and selecting a plasma sniper rifle for long-range.
"Aw yeah!" Booster said as he raised a massive rocket launcher onto his shoulder.
XR then rolled up, having sprouted several secondary arms, all of which wielded a variety of firearms. "Alright, let's show these humiliating pirates who's boss!"
"Uh, XR, couldn't you just use the weapons already worked into your frame?" Mira pointed out.
"What, and miss the chance to use all these puppies?" A sinister smile crept across the stubby robot's face. "I don't think so."
The blue-skinned female rolled her eyes as she darted out the door, followed closely by Booster and XR.
"OK, according to my map of the ship, the docking bay is that way!" XR pointed one of his rifles to the left.
"Wait, you've had a map this whole time?" Mira questioned.
"Not important!" The robot Ranger insisted and he began rolling down the hall.
After a few minutes of twisting and turning, Booster spoke up. "Where are all the space pirates? We haven't seen any of them!"
"Big ship, few pirates," XR explained as he lead them down another corridor. "Besides, with the way they were partying earlier, I doubt we'll be seeing ANY of them."
"Hey, you!" A group of space pirates called from behind them. "Stop!"
"On second thought, nevermind." The Space Rangers then whipped around and fired a variety of projectiles that quickly dispatched the offending pirates.
"No time for stealth now!" Buzz took off at a run. "Let's MOVE!"
They took off down the corridors, blasting any and all pirates that got in their way.
"The hanger's right down there!" XR announced as they rounded a corner.
Buzz attempted to open the final door, to no avail. "They've already started locking down the ship!"
"I think this calls for the big guns." Booster smiled mischievously as he raised his rocket launcher and proceeded to reduce the door to molten metal.
"Good work, Ranger," Buzz complemented. "Now let's get us a space ship!"
Swiftly, the Space Rangers proceeded into the hanger.
An insect-like pirate noticed them and shouted something in an alien language before leaping up and attempting to fry the Space Rangers with a plasma pistol. However, his efforts were cut short when Mira used her ghosting abilities to appear out of a crate in front of him and blast him.
“Over here!” XR shouted as he took out another two pirates. “This ship should be large enough to hold us, but small enough for us to break out of here and get help!”
“All right, you heard XR!” Buzz said as he finished sealing the door to the hanger shut with his laser, in order to prevent any more pirates from making their way into the room.
Quickly, the four Rangers piled into the cockpit and fired up the small shuttle’s engines.
“So, what do we do about the giant doorway blocking us from the outside?” Booster questioned.
“Wait for it...” XR rubbed his hands together in anticipation. Outside, a freshly-blasted control panel triggered the door mechanism, causing the massive door to slide open. “There we go.”
“And AWAY we go!” Buzz said as he gunned the engines of the shuttle, sending it rocketing out of the space pirate’s ship.
“Well, that was easier than I thought it would be,” Mira commented, glancing back at the massive space pirate ship.
“Most of the pirates were hammered pretty hard.” XR tapped his fingers together as a smirk crossed his face. “I may or may not have put a little extra... KICK in their drinks.”
Even Buzz got a laugh out of that.
“Hey, that’s what they get for making me wear that PATHETIC outfit!” the dome-shaped robot spat.
“What, you mean the one you’re still wearing?” Mira pointed out.
“QUIET!” XR barked as he turned to one of the shuttle’s computer screens. “OK, Setting a course for Star Command and- hey, what’s that?” He pointed a stubby purple finger at the screen.
Buzz leaned over to glance at where the robot was pointing. “Don’t know. Never seen energy reading like that.”
The entire ship suddenly shuddered.
“I get the feeling that's not good,” Booster whimpered.
The ship lurched again, this time more violently.
“XR, exactly how far are we from that energy reading?” Buzz inquired.
“Let’s see...” XR clicked a few buttons on the interface module. “Huh, that’s weird...”
Mira was almost thrown out of her seat by the next tremor. “What now?”
“According to this readout,” XR started. “We are negative 137 yards from the energy.”
“Negative?” Booster asked, trying to keep his balance in the rapidly accelerating jerks of the shuttle. “What kind of faulty readout is that?”
“I think it’s supposed to mean we’re already INSIDE then energy!” Mira exclaimed.
“What makes you say that?” XR questioned.
The robot’s jaw almost fell off from shock as he glanced out the ship’s viewscreen.
They were in some kind of tunnel made of clouds, lightning momentarily sprouting from the walls at random intervals.
“Call it a hunch...” Mira finished as a bright flash of light appeared around them.
Location: universal stream Equine 612.9 Iota
A flock of birds gracefully soared through the sky over the Sierra Canterlot, the largest mountain range in Equestria.
Despite flying by this formation regularly, the birds noticed something odd this particular day- a giant, swirling blue light hovering near the largest mountain.
Without warning, the light flared up and spat out a massive, smooth metal object. The birds squawked in surprise as they narrowly avoided being reduced to smudges against the object’s hull.
Inside the ship, things weren’t any less chaotic.
“Status report!” Buzz ordered as he pulled on the ship’s steering module, desperately trying to keep it airborne.
“Two of the four thrusters are burned out!” XR shouted as a shower of sparks rained down from the ceiling.
“We’ve materialized within the atmosphere of a planet, our exact elevation is-!” Booster was cut short as the monitor in front of him shattered in a shower of sparks. “... unknown, sir.”
“Landing systems have been disabled!” Mira screamed while the dashboard in front of her emitted enough blinking lights and miniature explosions to give an untrained person a headache.
“In that case, hang on, Rangers,” Buzz ordered. “We’re going to be making an unscheduled landing.”
The Space ranger operative then tried to steer the ship away from a rapidly approaching mountain range, to no avail. “Blast! Steering systems are going out!”
“Sir, our current trajectory is going to crash us right into an unknown ground vehicle!” Mira shouted.
Buzz peered into the distance and saw what she was referring to- a large, boxy red ground vehicle making its way up the mountain. Sure enough, they were headed straight for it.
Acting fast, Buzz yanked the steering controls to the side. Unfortunately, due to the damages the ship had taken, it stayed on its current, disastrous course.
"HANG ON TIGHT!" Optimus Prime screamed as the spaceship barreled down on him. His steering wheel then started rapidly rotating to the right as his brakes slammed on.
"WHAT THE [censored] IS GOING ON?!" Dan cursed as he desperately clung onto Rarity.
"Kindly remove yourself from my person!" the white unicorn shouted at him as she wrapped her hooves around Optimus' ladder to avoid being thrown off.
Fluttershy shrieked as she was almost catapulted off the roof, only to be caught by a rope slipping around her midsection.
"Gotcha!" AJ muttered as she clamped her jaws tighter on her lasso, simultaneously latching her hooves into indents in Optimus's truck mode.
"GAAAAH!" Spike screamed as he clamped his sharp claws onto the ladder.
"WHEEEEEEEEE!" Pinkie exclaimed as she was thrown off the truck.
"Woah, there!" Rainbow Dash, already flying, shot downwards in time to catch Pinkie before she hit the ground.
"WOOO!" Pinkie threw her hooves in the air and beamed. "That was fun! Do it again!"
Their conversation was interrupted by Optimus suddenly turning around and barrelling down the mountain. The ship touched down on the mountain path a mere hundred yards in behind the Autobot, prompting him to activate the rockets mounted on the rear of his vehicle form.
The passengers on the roof shrieked as Optimus' speed neared two hundred miles an hour. Despite the excessive speed, the still-moving ship was gaining on them.
Then came a new problem- a sharp turn in the path. At his current speed, there was no possible way The Prime could stop himself in time.
"Everybody hang on!" the Autobot ordered as he continued to accelerate.
"Twilight! OUT!" Legatron shouted.
"Are you insane?!" the purple unicorn retorted.
Legatron cracked open the driver's side door. "This cab isn't going to exist for much longer!" He explained, having caught on to Optimus' plan.
Twilight glanced nervously put the windshield to see they had run out of path.
Gulping, she leapt out the door with Legatron, who converted into his jet mode. Twilight shrieked, clinging to his jet form for dear life.
Meanwhile, screams from Optimus' remaining passengers increased as he launched over the edge of the cliff. In one fluid motion, he detached his cab from his trailer, transformed both components, then latched back together in his massive robot form. He banked to the right, away from the ship, careful not to throw off the ponies and single human that were still clinging to his ladder.
Everyone looked back at the ship just in time to see it slow to a halt, a third of it hanging precariously over the cliff face.
Legatron let out a long breath- an impressive feat, seeing how he was still in his jet mode. "Well, that was an adventure."
The response was a few whimpers from teary-eyed unicorn.
"You alright?" the green jet asked, concerned.
It was a moment before Twilight responded in a barely audible whisper.
"Can we land now?"
"Hellooooo? Can yah hear me?"
Buzz's eyes slowly pried themselves open. When his vision cleared, he saw he was face-to-face with what appeared to be a green and gray robot.
"Oooohhhh," was all Buzz could say as he reached for his head, which was suddenly aching.
"I'll take that as a yes," the robot said. His voice was young and upbeat, but still conveyed a hint of maturity and concern.
"What... Happened?" Buzz muttered.
"Your ship was sucked into an inter-dimensional portal and deposited in this universe," the robot exclaimed. "It crashed into a mountain, nearly flattening me and my friends."
Buzz sat up, now noticing he was still bent over the ship's fried control panel. "Yeah, sorry about that."
The robot waved a dismissive hand. "Don't worry about it. These portals are highly unstable- shorted out your ship as soon as you entered it." He extended the same hand he had waved to Buzz. "Name's Legatron- Keeper of the AllSpark, mulitverse traveller and protector of the innocent."
Buzz accepted the handshake. "Buzz Lightyear of Star Command. Me and my partners were-" A look of fear crossed his face. "My partners!"
"Are fine," Legatron said as he motioned behind Buzz. Looking back, the Space Ranger saw several brightly colored quadrupeds tending to his troops, who were also waking up.
He raised an eyebrow. "Are those-"
"Ponies, yes," Legatron finished. "They are the primary inhabitants of this land."
"Fascinating," Buzz said as he bent down to examine an orange pony with a stetson.
"Well howdy!" Applejack greeted.
Buzz's eyes widened. "They talk, too?"
"Yeah, why WOULDN'T they talk?" Any answer Legatron might have received was cut off by a long, low creak from the ships' frame. "Oh, yeah, this thing is kinda hanging over a cliff edge. But don't worry, we have a giant robot holding it up. We should have plenty of time before the cliff gives way."
The green robot's comlink crackled. "Legatron!" Optimus' voice said. "I can't hold it much longer! The cliffside is crumbling too fast!"
"OK, scratch that," Legatron said. "RUN!"
The Space Rangers, ponies and robots then scrambled out of the ship, tripping over eachother, as well as broken bits of metal.
Seconds after they had cleared out, the edge of the cliff crumbled. Optimus had no choice but to let the ship go. Moments later, a sickening metallic crunch echoed through the mountain range.
For a minute, no one spoke.
Legatron broke the silence. "Alrighty then. Buzz Lightyear, it is an honor," he said, shaking the Ranger's hand. "And yes, I've heard of you and your friends." Spinning around, he faced the ponies, Optimus and Dan. "Guys, this is Buzz Lightyear, and his partners, XR, Mira, and Booster. They're Space Rangers- intergalactic peace keepers." Again, he span, this time to face the Space Rangers. "Space Rangers, these are a special group of ponies called the Elements of Harmony. They're Twilight Sparkle and her dragon assistant, Spike, Fluttershy, Applejack, Rarity, Rainbow Dash, and Pinkie Pie. The obnoxious human is Dan, and the massive transforming robot is Optimus Prime." He clanked his hand against his chest. "And finally, I'm Legatron. Any questions?"
It was a moment before anyone responded, seeing how they were still slightly surprised at Legatron's sudden burst of information.
XR finally spoke. “Exactly where are we?”
"Earth, in the country of-" Legatron paused when he got a look at the shorter mech. "What the heck are you wearing?"
Confused, XR looked down and saw that the maid's outfit had somehow survived the crash. "It's not important!" He barked, mechanical eyebrows meshing into a furious V-shape.
Legatron shrugged. "Whatev's. You guys are on a parallel version of planet Earth inhabited by mythical creatures. This country is known as Equestria, and as the name implies, is inhabited primarily by these sentient ponies. We are on our way to the capital city of Canterlot to visit the ponies' leader, Princess Celestia, about closing the seemingly inter-universe wormholes that are bringing random residents of other universes here." He took a deep breath. "Any other exposition you'd like me to recite, or can we focus on eliminating the threat to thousands of innocent lives?"
"We'll take 'saving the innocents' for two-hundred, please," Mira responded in her best game-show voice.
"Alrighty then!" Legatron clapped his hands together. "Finally, we're getting somewhere!"
Optimus took the cue and shifted back into his firetruck form.
"Woah!" Booster's eyes widened. "Why can't YOU do that, XR?"
"Hey, I can so transform!" XR's legs then retracted into his can-shaped body, before popping back out with his treaded feet replaced with mop heads. "See?"
"Yeah," Legatron laughed, "That'll sweep them off their... their..." His face assumed a pained expression. "Augh, I can't do it! It's too obvious!" Without another word, he climbed back into Prime's cab.
"So, where do we ride?" Booster inquired, catching on that the Autobot's truck mode wouldn't take his massive weight.
The driver's side window rolled down. "Well, you have jetpacks, right?" Legatron pointed out.
"He's right, Rangers," Buzz started. "This vehicle was obviously not built for transporting large quantities of lifeforms." With that he punched a large red button on his armor's chestplate, activating the wings and rockets of his backpack.
"Coooool!" Rainbow exclaimed as the Space Rangers took to the sky.
"If everyone's ready," Legatron started, window still rolled down, "Then let's roll out!"
Optimus responded with a sigh.
Legatron snickered. "Sorry, couldn't resist."
High above the travellers, a dark shape hovered in clouds.
Shiftech's blood red eyes narrowed as he brought his hand to the side of his head and clicked on his comlink.
"Teridax," he stated simply.
"What is it, Shiftech?" came the reply.
"Our enemies are slowly gaining momentum and numbers," the dark Herald of Unicron reported. "How are things going with the portal device?"
"Not well, I'm afraid," Teridax sighed. "We have yet to pinpoint the exact cause of the malfunction, or how to fix it."
"In that case, I'm sending you all to intercept the Keeper of the AllSpark and his friends.”
There was a pause before Teridax responded. “What?”
“You heard me. I will tend to the portal device while you hold them off,” Shiftech explained.
“But why? The Keeper of the AllSpark is YOUR enemy!” Teridax argued. “Besides, GLaDOS would be MUCH more useful staying behind and working on the device!”
“I have my reasons,” Shiftech stated simply.
After another pause, teridax spoke. “Very well then.”
With a click, the communication ended. Slowly, Shiftech averted his gaze to the sky.
“I know you’re coming,” he spat. “And when you do, I’m going to give you heck.”
“Are we there yet?” XR whined for what seemed like the hundredth time.
“Nearly,” Twilight responded. “I can see the city gate up ahead-”
The group of assorted travelers glanced skyward to see a large group of armored pegasi hovering above them.
“Aw, crap, more pony cops!” Dan said. “Pinky thing, hide me!” He then lifted Pinkie Pie in front of himself in a miserable attempt to shield his face from the guards.
The mass of guards slowly touched down, forming a large circle around the travellers. A half dozen remained in the sky keeping tabs on the still hovering Space Rangers.
“I’ll handle this,” Twilight said as she exited Optimus’ cab and approached who she presumed was the leader of the group of guards. ”I am Twilight Sparkle, personal student of Princess Celestia. These others are refugees that have been... DISPLACED from their homes, and I am taking them to the Princess to see what she can do about solving this problem.” She finished by motioning Spike over, who hopped off of Prime and handed the guard the note from the Princess.
The guard looked it over carefully. “OK, they’re clear,” he informed his men. “But we’ll have to escort you through the city in order to avoid any other panics.”
“‘Other’ panics?” Twilight repeated. ‘As in, there have been panics recently?”
“Why do you think we closed off the city?” the guard replied. “First a flaming metal triangle crashed near the city and exploded, then a metal box full of strange monkey-looking things appeared out of nowhere!”
“Monkey-looking things?” the purple unicorn inquired. “Did they happen to look similar to the being on the roof of our vehicle that's hiding behind the pink pony?”
The guard glanced past Twilight and caught sight of Dan. “Yes, they look like the same species.”
Twilight sighed before turning back to the firetruck. “In that case, we better get moving. I have a feeling our sessions of rounding up aliens are far from over.”