After Twinkleshine left, Dinky walked to the door and crouched down against the floor. Pulling the door open a crack, she peaked through and watched the ponies passing by. She was tense, ready to shut the door if she seemed to be noticed. Once the crowd finished, she counted slowly to twenty-five to make sure.
Satisfied that no other ponies were coming, she let the door fall shut. Closing her eyes, she focused on her magic and concentrated again. This time she pulled the magic back in and around her, feeling it tingle through and around her body and she accelerated herself in time.
When she had experienced the event in Sugarcube Corner, the filly had been able to accelerate herself so much, time seemed to stop. After Nightmare Night she began to practice on the spell. It was during the practice she discovered that, unfortunately, she could not intentionally duplicate the results again. Closest she could get to it was such that it reminded her of looking at a flip book one page at a time. Even that speed she could not hold for long.
Instead she was moving at a very rapid pace, but time was still passing. The best estimate that could be made based on a lot of calculations she could not understand was that one second was the equivalent of ten. Anything she did would be a blur that most ponies would be uncertain as to whether or not they saw it. All the same, she concluded it would be best to keep out of sight as much as possible. Now she just needed to figure out where to go and what to do when she got there.
Opening the door, she checked one last time. Not seeing anyone, she began to walk quickly down the hall. Her mind tried to figure out the best place to start and what in Equestria she should do. She quickly considered what others she knew would do.
Let's see.... The Doctor wouldn't have much of a plan anyways. He would do something that seemed insane with his screwdriver and end up having it working out. Maybe he would block the mare from using her magic and have mom get the orbs? I can't do either since I don't have wings or a screwdriver. She stopped at a corner and looked around the edge to check. Rainbow Dash would go over the stallions straight on. Maybe if I were larger and stronger. Applejack could tie them up. I don't know how to work with a rope. Fluttershy would probably scold them for scaring fillies...
Dinky stopped as a thought came to her. Fluttershy's first thought would be about the fillies. Her second would be about the animals. The filly resumed her walk as the thoughts came together. There were some animals in one of the classrooms. Maybe she could let them out of the cages and create a distraction. She would have to go and see about that after.
The filly stopped again as she reached the hall with the principal's office. Pressing against the wall, she peaked around the corner to check. There was one near the door. He seemed to be looking straight ahead. Could he somehow see both sides of the hall through his mask?
The stallion's head began to turn in her direction and she jumped back. Even with the increased speed, she could not get to the door and check on the principal without getting seen. It would have to wait on that. Maybe an animal could help distract him, which would be all the better.
As fast as she could, she bolted across the hall entrance and ran as fast as she could. Hopefully she would be well out of sight if the stallion in the gas mask decided to investigate. As she ran, Dinky's mind continued to work out options.
Miss Rarity would be a good distraction. She could use her charms to distract the stallions, or her wit and fashion sense to mock the prankster until she got mad and forgot the plan. Under her mask the filly grinned. She could almost hear Rarity's voice. "Why darling, you simply should not wear such an outfit. I mean such a bright blue in contrast to black? And the whole outfit skin tight at that? Why, it simply draws far too much attention to the excessive size of your flank."
Pinkie Pie would throw a big party. That would probably work for her. Have all of the ponies so worn out and too tired to fight any longer. I don't know how to throw a party like that. Miss Twilight would probably use her knowledge to figure out where the orbs are hidden then her magic to teleport them somewhere safe.
Dinky chewed on her lips as she reached the door to the classroom she wanted. Could she do that? She did not know as much as Miss Twilight so it would be harder to figure out where the orbs were. Twinkleshine's idea might help on that part. Dinky wondered if she could teleport the orbs. She could send things as well as summon them, but her powers were weak. Still only things on the smaller side, and nothing that was living. The outfit was easy enough. If the orbs were the same as the ones on Nightmare Night, it should be easy to send them somewhere else.
Deciding to keep it as a possible plan, she continued with her current actions. Reaching up, she took a hold of the knob and pushed the door open. Dinky stepped into the room and looked around. On one side was an entire wall with various sized cubby holes. Each cubby had an animal in it: mice, rats, rabbits, ferrets, birds, even a few snakes. Most seemed to be content in their habitat at the moment. She dropped the spell around her and moved through the room.
"Excuse me," the filly said as she walked up to the animals, "I don't know if you heard, but the schools in trouble. I could really use some help dealing with the mean ponies. Would any of you be willing to help me?"
Several animals looked at the others in the cubbies with them. There were little bits of noise among the different ones, seeming to discuss or answer. Finally one of the snakes, three rats, a ferret and a rabbit came out to join the filly. After all, the school was their home as well.
"Thank you." Dinky could not help but smile at the animals. Using her magic, she began to pick up the animals that volunteered. Picking up the snake, she put it under her hat and put it back on her head (Not exactly tradition for magicians, but seems like the best choice). Next the three mice. Picking them up she put them inside her costume's collar. The three rodents scrambled a moment before settling on the back of her neck. The filly stifled a giggle as the movement tickled her a little. Finally the rabbit and ferret were set onto her back, the cape covering them from view.
Dinky began to collect her magic, then stopped. Was it safe to speed up with the animals on her? She had never tried it on another creature before. Would they speed up as well? Would they move at normal pace? Could it kill them? The whole thing made her want to shake her head, but the snake probably would not like that. She decided the best option was to move at normal speed and try to keep out of sight as best she could.
As quick as she felt comfortable with, the costumed filly headed out the door and back through the hallway. She continued to check as she went, making sure that there were no ponies to stop her before moving past. Especially since this time if they spotted her, they would know it for sure. When she reached the hall that led to the principle's office, she stopped and looked around the corner. The gas-mask pony was still there.
Using her magic, she reached back and took a gentle hold of the ferret. The filly brought the animal around to float in front of her, looking mask to mask at each other.
"You move pretty quickly," she whispered to the ferret. "Down that hall is a pony in a gas mask. Do you think you can get him to chase you and lead him away from that door for me?" She set the ferret down on the floor gently, letting it go. It made some dooking noise then turned and scurried down the hall. Dinky did not want to be seen, so she could not risk peeking around the corner to watch what happened. Instead she closed her eyes, focusing on her ears to listen as best she could.
Unseen by either pony, the ferret jill ran as fast as it could at down the hall, stopping directly in front of the gas mask pony. Standing sideways, the ferret arched her back and started jumping up and down, moving toward the pony. Jaws held as wide as possible, she bounced back and forth, getting the pony's attention. When he leaned down to get a closer look, she jumped.
The ferret leaped at the gas mask, grabbing onto it and covering the eyes. She held on tight as the pony shook his head, keeping her grip as best she could. Seeing a hoof come up to smack at her, the ferret jumped, letting him punching himself in the face and knock the mask slightly to one side.
Taking advantage of the distraction, the jill ran forward, getting beneath the pony. Turning to one side she bit at his leg just above the hoof. The sharp needle-like teeth would not do any lasting damage, but it would sting. As the stallion cried out in pain and surprise, the ferret pulled back. Once she was certain that his attention was on her again, she began to run as quickly as she could down the hallway.
The sound of hooves running growing fainter and fainter gave Dinky her cue. Taking a quick look she saw that gas-mask pony running down the hall after the ferret. Trying to keep as quiet as she could, she moved toward the door. Stopping in front of it, she leaned up and looked inside.
The room was empty except for one pony. The principal was on the floor in front of the desk. A piece of fabric was wrapped over her eyes and another in her mouth. The mare laid on her back, all four legs up in the air and tied together.
Dinky quickly opened the door, slipped inside the room, and shut the door quietly behind her. As she walked closer, she looked at the knot on the rope tying the principal's legs together. She did not really know anything about knots and it looked like a complicated one. She pulled the bunny from off her back.
"Can you chew through the ropes?"
The rabbit hopped from where it was held and over to the bound mare. Hopping up, it stretched out its body to reach the rope and began to bite and chew. As it did, Dinky reached up to remove the blindfold and the gag from the principal. The mare blinked rapidly trying to get used to the light again. She then looked at the would be rescuer, and the excitement shifted to confusion.
"Who are you?"
The principal continued to stare at the costumed foal, looking very confused. The masked mare shifted her hooves and cleared her throat.
"Principal Authority," Mare-Do-Well said, "You know this school better than anyone, correct?"
"Of course." The principal straightened up (or as much as she could while tied up and stuck on her back with her legs up in the air), "I have been on the faculty for over three decades -- from teacher's aid to teacher then principal -- and that's after being a student to graduate summa cum laude and being valedictorian. So I have been here for near half a century."
Underneath the mask, the filly could not help but roll her eyes.
"Right...Anyway, The Poison Joke Prankster has moved all the students to the auditorium for some reason. Most likely it is the best way to keep them under control and dust them all at once with Poison Joke, probably through the ventilation system. So I need to know where the vents are and the best location to spread the most powder."
"But... There are no vents in the auditorium."
"There are no vents," Principal Authority repeated, "It was built with maximum acoustic capabilities, which outside wind could interfere with." She shifted. "There is a latticework of walkways up near the ceiling to allow move above the audience without being noticed though..."
"I take it that the orbs could easily be dropped onto the audience from there?"
"Alright. The rabbit should get you free soon. Now if you excuse me, I have some students that need to be saved."
With that, Mare-Do-Well opened the door and ran out into the hall.
"NO RUNNING IN THE HALLS!" the principal shouted, squirming from where she was tied.