Lord Xaos: *walks onto stage*
*pulls card out of pocket, starts reading it*
"Ha-ha. Made you look! HAPPY APRIL FOOLS DAY! Now I will commence writting non-cannon Shenanigans involving Jesus, Kamina, and Bon Bon being a Soviet Spy!"
*just then, Dual Pie (Sword, Berry Punch jacket, and all) breaks through the wall riding on the back of CENOBIA, the agile and armored Lion-like 14th Colossus, while the Hulk Hogan theme plays*
Dual Pie: "AW, BUCK NO! I AM SICK. AND. TIRED. OF ALL THESE JOKE CHAPTERS ALL OVER FIMFICTION.NET!"
LX: "HOLY CRAP, DP, WHAT HAVE YOU DONE? THOSE CREATURES ARE INDESTRUCTIBLE AND NOT MEANT TO LEAVE THEIR NATIVE ENVIRONMENT! A-AND YOU NEED TO GET BACK TO YOUR OMAKE!"
DP: "Don't change the subject. I am not going to idly sit by while you disrespect your fans by pulling random crap out of your ass and hiding behind 'April Fools!' What do you have to say for yourself, young man?" *crosses hooves*
Lord Xaos: "Well...I..." *pull on collar of shirt*
DP: "SILENCE! You must pay for the sins of authors during this holiday. And also the ones who wrote Mass Effect 3's ending."
Lord Xaos: "Wait...why do I have take responsibility for-"
DP: "QUICK! BEFORE HE KEEPS TALKING AND DOES IN FACT TURN THIS INTO A REAL JOKE CHAPTER! CHARGE!"
Cenobia: *paws the ground, reading itself to charge*
LX: "AAAAHHHH!!!!!!" *runs like hell*
Cenobia: *chases Xaos*
LX: "ugh.....I'm starting to think there is a point to the whole 'Creator's rights being trampled under the foot of the mob' argument." *a loose paper floats out of the wreckage of the wall that Xaos was send flying through.*
DP: "Hey...what's this? *seizes paper as spoils of war* ...Oh my gosh, oh my gosh, oh my gosh! HEY EVERYPONY! ITS THE REAL NEXT CHAPTER! Quick! We need to post this right away!"
LX: "It was...coming out....next month....as....optional DLC. Ooooh." @_@
A My Little Pony fanfiction by Lord Xaos
Characters are the property of Hasbro, etc.
Pinkie was kind of freaking out. She stared at the “Ribs” Sunny had offered her.
Although, perhaps not as much as if her hostess had been offering her actual meat. Sunny had laughed, but been very through in clearing that up. Pinkie actually felt silly for not realizing it before.
Back in Appleloosa, Pinkie’s efforts to stop an imminent Pony-Buffalo conflict included her sang a song had included lyrics that both pony and buffalo diets were “Completely Vegetarian”, which was true. Also, as the announcer at the “Running of the Leaves” that she had competed in Hot Dog eating contests, which was also true and not horrifying in the least.
Ponies were not omnivores. If nothing else, ponies were friends with most “food animals.” There were laws about what kinds of animals (a lot of them insects and fish, although the law seemed strangely ambiguous about rabbits for some unexplained reason) were okay to feed to your carnivorous pet - which Pinkie had to review when she got Gummy for her birthday- based of how intelligent some of them were. At times, they might eat meat if nothing else was available. The smell of blood was unappetizing to ponies, however, it turned out that in small doses, ponies were less likely to become sick to ingesting meat, although it was generally theorized that they could not live on such food. Or at least, did not want to try.
There were times in history of ponies ingesting cooked and thinly sliced meat in the halls of griffons or other races that ate such food, only to turn away in disgust and horror when the truth became known. And yet, through dealing with these cultures, a number of meat imitations became popularized amongst ponies. The history books seemed to shy away from whether it was to appease the foreigners or because some ponies had actually…liked…what they ate.
Pinkie had recalled those moments in geography class when a much too graphic teacher told his students to beware that they ASK what’s in the sandwiches they are selling in the shops of the territories of the griffons, the dragons, the hyenas, etc.
Still, the only fake she had even heard of were the hot dogs and there were…well, they were hot dogs. Granted, cupcakes were also cupcakes, but before this horrible day, the prospect of eating flesh, as in real flesh of something that had parents and a face and stuff had simply not been on the radar, let alone that it might be disguised as something she thought she could trust. The idea of hiding pony meat in a cupcake made her feel betrayed and disgusted. She wasn’t going to eat anything that might actually BE a real meat product that doesn’t even need to be disguised in appearance or taste.
So it was with humiliation that when she tried to explain to her hostess what was bothering her, Sunny Gold found it all hilarious.
“Hee hee. A pony’s ribs? You sure have a wild imagination there! Ahahaha! Boy, was your face red!” Sunny giggled. “Seriously, that squeak you did was so adorable!”
“That…was supposed to be a horrified scream when you just took a giant bite out of the ribs to show me that they weren’t actually bones and didn’t contain bones...” Pinkie said quietly.
Sunny looked down at the barbeque sauce-drenched soybean based meat substitute with a giant bite mark in her hoof. Then she looked back up at Pinkie Pie with a confused expression. “Horrified?”
“I nearly fainted…” Pinkie grumbled. Oh well…I suppose I could have traumatized her with the idea. We certainly wouldn’t want that.
Oh no. She might calm the buck down and be tolerable to be around if that happened. What’s hilarious is that now she thinks you’re just a jumpy, naïve little foal now. Doesn’t it just make your blood boil? You really should shut her up. This time, the violent tug Pinkie felt throughout her entire body actually hurt.
“Hehe…Twitchie-twitch!” Sunny giggled.
Ow. I really need to get that checked out. I’ll add it to the bottom of my ever growing to-do list of all the other things I need to do. At the top of that list is:
Getting something to eat. …If I want to eat anymore.
Pinkie’s stomach growled loudly. It was almost as if it hadn’t been able to properly digest anything all day before being abruptly emptied. Sunny could only giggle at this.
Sigh. The jury has spoken.
“Alright, let me see…I have, ooh! I have cupcakes! I forgot I had some!”
Pinkie fell down went boom.
Sunny just stared at the pink pony lying at her hooves with an amused look on her face for a while before asking “Is that a yes or a no?”
”That….didn’t make me as unconscious as I hoped it would.” Pinkie’s muffled voice emitted from her face, which was firmly planted in the ground.
“No sweets either. Thank you.”
“You sure? They’re chocolate cupcakes.”
Shut up…shut up…just shut up already. Pinkie rose her head off the ground. “Quite sure. I’m…allergic to chocolate.”
Sunny gasped “Oh my gosh! I’m so sorry to hear that! I think I’d die!”
“Yes, it’s really too bad.” Pinkie was slowly becoming aware of how limited and boring her remaining food choices were. And, she actually wasn’t sure when the last time it was that she had chocolate cupcakes now that she thought about it, it had been much too long...
Sweetie Belle’s face flashed in her mind, followed by Meanie Pie decorating a chocolate cupcake with white and lavender icing, nearly turning Pinkie’s stomach inside out before she forced her mind to focus on some other task. She addressed Sunny Gold once again. “What else do you have?”
“Well, alright, if you don’t like ribs, then I brought other things. I packed some hayfries, but I…kind of ate them on the way to the park.” Sunny gave a little sheepish blush. She continued to rummage through her basket until she pulled out a little yellow tin box. “Sorry. Oh! I have this nice salad. There are also these packets with salad dressing that came from a restaurant! I think. I can’t remember the name for the life of me.” Sunny looked thoughtful.
“I’ll take it. Thank you very much for sharing.” Pinkie bowed her head, crossing a foreleg over her chest, partially in a foppish show of respect, partially to bring her head that much closer to the tin box containing the leafy greens and vegetables.
“Okay, I’m glad you found something you like!” Sunny smiled as Pinkie gave a little grunt in between bites of lettuce.
As she began to eat the salad Sunny had offered her, which was almost as bland as the leaves she had eaten that morning since she decidedly left off the hideously sweet-smelling raspberry vinaigrette salad dressing, she started to think about sugar.
Pinkie wasn’t sure why she felt equally adverse to all sweet things including fruit, but it was probably the incident with the punch that had left her afraid to touch anything that reminded her of the home that had turned into a place of danger and horrible memories.
“But really…how can you live without sweets? I mean, there’s French horns and lemon pies and cookies and berry filled pastries and barely filled pastries and oh my gosh, they’re all so GOOD!”
Pinkie felt the urge to change the subject. Immediately.
“Hey, Sunny? You said you could heat your food with your magic. How does that work, exactly?”
“Huh? Oh, right.” Sunny pulled out the package of ribs, unwrapped them from their paper and stared intently at them. Her horn glowed with a yellow-ish aura, and a tiny orb of fire, no larger than a grape appeared before her. As Pinkie watched with interest, Sunny Gold created more fireballs and levitated them together, creating a ring of flame. Sunny lowered the fire to the fake rib meat and left it to hover above the meat substitute.
Sunny immediately looked up from her work, as if nothing could possibly go wrong at this point, and grinned “See? Easy!”
“That’s ….neato.” Pinkie blinked, staring at the slightly hypnotic ring of fire. “You sure you should be using that so close to paper and cloth?”
Sunny waved a hoof. “Oh, don’t worry. Heating things with magic is my special talent! It’d be completely embarrassing to mess something like this up.”
“Really.” Pinkie deadpanned as she looked down at Sunny’s food, which was making a loud sizzling noise. “Because your ring is kind of slowly dropping and it looks like your stuff might, ah, yup. Eeyup.”
“Yup, what?” Sunny cocked her head to the side, still looking at Pinkie instead of what she was doing.
“Your ‘ribs’ are in fact on fire.”
Sunny looked at Pinkie. Her eyes fell down to her now smoking picnic blanket.
Her magical fire continued to hover in place, but the heat had caused the package to crisp up and catch fire on its own. Sunny’s riblets were sizzling and blackening around the edges as the flames started to burn through the paper and the blanket underneath…
She looked back at Pinkie Pie and gave a nervous grin while her face turned red. “Oops…”
“You should really put that out.” Pinkie wore an apprehensive look on her face as she rose to her hooves, watching the fire spread across the blanket. “Like, right now. Before it spreads to the GRASS AND BURNS THE ENTIRE PARK DOWN, PLEASE.”
“Er….right!” Sunny quickly shut her eyes and focused magic into her horn. Sunny’s golden magic aura appeared around the entire fire, and contracted, extinguishing all the flames with a loud hisssss. She looked over the entire blanket for a moment before giving a sigh of relief.
“Problem solved!” Sunny cheered, smiling as if nothing of significance had happened.
Pinkie had no words. Sure, she could list of a number of dangerous things she had done in her life: Trying to cook Flambe for the first time without a supervising adult, deciding to fly over ghastly gorge in an untested flying machine she built herself, mindlessly chasing her rogue shadow into the Everfree Forest, deciding to give Rainbow Dash that “wake up call” in the same flying machine that when it was behind on its maintenance, the incident with the yogurt….
But this unicorn was a disaster waiting to happen.
“Hey, why are you looking at me like that? I got everything under…OH NO!” Sunny suddenly looked back to her picnic with a look of utter dismay.
“Oh no? What’s wrong now?” Pinkie gasped.
“I BURNED MY RIBS! WAAAAH!!” Sunny held up a blackened package that was eliciting a surprisingly sweet burning smell. Then, because the package was still hot she starting juggling it in her hooves. “Ow! Oh! Eeech! Hot!” As Sunny dropped the package and started to blow on her hooves Pinkie covered her nostrils to protect them from the smoke and the smell and gave a nervous giggle.
A giggle which gave way to a sort of quiet chuckle.
“ehehehehe *chortle* heh heh heh heh *snort* Ha ha ha aha…Oh, you’re a riot, Sunny.”
Sunny gasped. “You actually CAN laugh!”
“Huh?” Pinkie cocked her head to one side. “What do you mean?”
“Oh you know. You’ve been all grumpy and humorless. You haven’t laughed or even smiled since we met. I was worried you were going to start cutting yourself at any moment now.”
“Huh?” Pinkie frowned in confusion.
“Aw, frowny face…you had such a great smile, too.” Sunny pouted.
Well, EXCUSE ME for living a nightmare all day long. Pinkie scowled at the unicorn, but she sighed and let her expression soften. Don’t take it out on her, she’s just trying to be friendly. I’d do the same thing in her position.
…Will I ever go back to normal?
“Come on, give me another smile.” Sunny grinned from ear to ear.
Pinkie forced the corners of her lips to turn upwards, but it came of as insincere this time.
“…That’s…good.” Sunny said, disappointment clear on her face.
Pinkie drooped. “I’m sorry, stuff’s been happening. Really, really….stuffy stuff. It’s not you or anything, I’m just not in the mood right now. Really.”
“Hmm…” Sunny looked thoughtful at Pinkie Pie.
In the awkward silence that followed, Pinkie returned to her salad. I’m sorry Sunny. I’ll throw you the Welcome to Ponyville Party you deserve, just as soon as I get my friends up to speed, liberate Sugarcube Corner from the clutches of (quite literal) Evil, and deal with the fallout....maybe figure out if I can go home or not.
Actually…shouldn’t Meanie Pie have greeted Sunny to Ponyville herself?
“Say Sunny, are you sure you haven’t heard of me before? I mean, I’m actually kind of known as a party animal around her.”
“Party animal? You?”
“Well yes.” Pinkie’s voice was regaining a little bit of its usual chipper tone as she spoke with pride. “In fact, everypony knows me as a the friendliest and most fun-loving pony in all of Ponyville. I throw parties for absolutely everypony..”
Sunny snorted and broke out in riotous laughter. "AHAHAHA! That's a good one! I mean, no offense, but you're like the grumpiest stick in the mud ever! But you still have a great sense of humor, that's why I like you!"
"...Glad you feel that way." Pinkie's ears drooped and she was about to return to her salad when....
Pinkie blinked, and looked around. “Did you notice that?”
“You had another spasm, if that’s what you mean.” Sunny smiled. “It looks like fun. I think I’ll try doing them now!”
Sunny grit her teeth, rose one fore hoof high in the air, and leaned to one side.
You know…It’s awfully rude of you to ignore somepony when they are trying to talk to you.
Pinkie kept eating her salad.
Alright, fine. I don’t want to hear what you have to say anyway. I’ve been doing some thinking, and I’d like to point some things out, because you can’t be trusted to notice these things yourself.
Pinkie kept eating.
Why do you have your tail back? Think about this. That was the one characteristic that separated you from “Meanie Pie.” And then, there was the fact that she said she was killing Sweetie Belle while she was stabbing you but you couldn’t feel anything.
Pinkie swallowed, and did not take another bite.
All signs are starting to point back to-
Shut up. Pinkie shot Sunny, or rather, the space occupied by Sunny, an icy glare without really meaning too. Sunny looked like she was about to say something funny, but her expression darkened when she saw Pinkie’s face and started to focus entirely on eating her food.
Fine. But before I go, I just want you to know. *ahem*
The voice took on a sing song tone.
You killed Sweetie Belle, You killed Sweetie Belle~
I didn’t! Meanie Pie did! There is no evidence connecting her to me aside from what she just said! As far as I know she drugged me so I couldn’t feel pain! And she even tried to get me to kill Dash as a way to escape, but why would she do that? Dash knows. She’s only controlling me and who I can interact with but…
Pinkie’s eyes widened in realization.
Something went wrong. I can interact with ponies now. No matter what is really happening now, I can get help from everypony now.
Yes. But then, she either killed Sweetie after wards she was done with you, meaning you were her last chance, or she already did it while Rainbow Dash was chasing you, meaning you served as a distraction.
“I KNOW!” Pinkie snarled, causing Sunny Gold to jump in surprise.
“Whoa! What’s your deal?” Sunny questioned.
“Oh….um…nothing. Let’s just say that I have…um…Toilet’s syndrome?” Pinkie blushed, as she noticed the entire park was frowning at her.
“Oh….! Are you a Spy?” Sunny asked, suddenly excited.
“No, I…WHAT? Why would you…”
“Nevermind.” Sunny winked and gave Pinkie as not-so-subtle “Shhhh…”. Then she closed her eyes and waggled her head as she sang to herself. “Secret…AGENT Mare! Secret…AGENT Mare~…”
Since Sunny was not paying attention to her outburst anymore, Pinkie decided to quietly return to the much more relevant conversation.
Good. Just checking to see what that you know. It confirms what I suspected. That you are HESITATING TO REPORT YOUR CRIME TO YOUR FRIENDS, because you -know- what they will think of you. Gasp! How will you explain it to Rarity?
Pinkie fought back the urge to sob. She took several deep breaths, which did not go unnoticed by Sunny. Who ARE you? If you aren’t going to help me, get out of my head!
Oh, Pinkamena Diane Pie. You know very well who I am. And I can’t leave. I’ve been here all along, being ignored by you.
Pinkie closed her eyes and thought about as many happy or even urgent things as she could, trying to drown the voice out.
I DO have to hurry and tell Twilight what’s happening. Meanie Pie might not know that I can be seen by other ponies yet, which means I better make my move sooner rather than later. I just need to avoid getting caught by Rainbow Dash.
Pinkie looked up at Sunny Gold. “Sunny, I know I’ve been acting weird all day, but its because I really, really do have a problem…and I need to talk to a certain friend of mine about it. As soon as possible, really. I was hungry, thank you for sharing your salad with me. You really have been very kind, but I need to go now. I just occurred to me how urgent this is.”
“Aw…..Okay. You wanna take a ham sandwich for the road?” Sunny pulled out what appeared to be a complete dead ringer to the sandwiches Mrs. Cake made for the brunch with Princess Celestia the day Pinkie Pie stole the Princess’ dessert right in front of her. A small part of her brain thought chimed in with a nostalgic: Good Times…GOOD tiiiimes.
Pinkie shuttered. “No, really, that’s okay.”
“And also you’re really missing out on the ribs…are you SURE you don’t want a bite?” Sunny shoved the strange food item in her face before she could even reply.
A little too far. She brushed the meatless riblets across Pinkie’s face. Pinkie let out a disgusted scream as the cold, sticky, reddish-brown sauce was stuck to her coat and the smell of burnt honey filled her nostrils.
“Oh…whoops? Hehe, let me clean that up for you!” Sunny blushed as she fetched
Pinkie had placed a hoof on her cheek where the sauce had smeared, and when she felt something sticky on them, she looked at her hoof, and saw that her hoof was covered in the reddish, not-quite-the-color-of-hardened-blood, substance all the way up to her fetlock. She noticed now that the sauce had a sweet, honey-like smell to it, and that threw her over the edge. The images came. Carrot Cake. Cup Cake. Gilda. Peppermint Twist. Berry Pinch. Snips. Snails. Pipsqueak. Carrot Top. Fluoride. Sweetie Belle. A dress made up of cutie marks and pegasi wings. Rainbow Dash.
“KYAAAAAAAAAA!!!” Pinkie’s shriek grabbed the attention of all the ponies in the park, but she ignored them. She rolled around in the grass, constantly screaming and batting her face with her hooves, trying to get the vile…whatever-it-was OFF.
Sunny rolled her eyes. “Geez. What a neat freak.”
This gathered some chuckles from the ponies around the area. Pinkie froze, a bewildered look in her eye as she calmed down enough to take in what was occurring. She rose to her hooves and looked around the park.
Everypony was laughing at her, like everything was some kind of joke.
“Stop laughing at me!” The ponies didn’t stop. Pinkie was starting to feel humiliated. “Quit it! It’s not funny!”
Aw…widdle bitty Pinkie Pie can’t take hits as well as she gibs dem? The voice was back.
I never humiliated anypony like this! Pinkie’s attempt at ignoring the voice, hoping it would go away was going up in smoke. And now at this time of public embarrassment and frustration, it sounded, if anything, louder. I just surprised them a little…we always laugh afterwards…
Oh really? Well, in that case: SURPRISE! YOU’RE A LAUGHING STOCK! NOW LAUGH, STUPID!
“Hee hee…here, let me clean you off if you’re so upset about it.” Sunny rose a napkin to Pinkie’s face.
“Don’t touch me!” Pinkie swatted the napkin away, sneering at the unicorn. Despite the expression on her face, she couldn’t control the way her body was trembling as the ponies continued to laugh and laugh at her. It was really hurting. Didn’t they understand what she had been through?
“Hey! I’m just trying to help! Why are you acting like this?” Sunny frowned, an expression of being greatly offended plastered on her face as she grit her teeth and stamped her hoof. The laughter around the park grew silent.
Pinkie hyperventilated, and pointed a shaky hoof at Sunny. “Y-you just…Something’s up with you! YOU’RE NOT NORMAL! You…” Pinkie stopped. What am I doing? Where am I even going with this? The expression on Sunny’s face darkened at the accusatory gesture, and Pinkie Pie started to waver. She didn’t really know what she wanted to say. She choked on her words as she held her head in her hooves. She started to sob. “I-I’m sorry! I’m. Just. So. Tired. Today’s been nothing but awful.”
“Oh, really? You met me today, HAVE I BEEN AWFUL!? I’VE BEEN COMPLETELY NICE TO YOU AND WHILE YOU HAVE NICE MANNERS ONE SECOND, YOU GO AND DO…WHATEVER IT IS YOU DO THE NEXT!” ” Sunny yelled, making Pinkie shrink away from her. Sunny rose to her hooves, following Pinkie as she retreated. “And now you’re leaving without saying goodbye?”
Pinkie was the one who was annoyed with the unicorn, how did this reversal happen? She started to suspect that Sunny didn’t have her best interests at heart. She backed away a little faster now. “P-please! You’re scaring me! You don’t know what I’ve seen! I’ve seen the bodies of little foals covered in their own blood, and then I die and then I’m not dead and Dashie hates me, and, and…” Pinkie took a moment to scream to the heavens. “MY BEST FRIEND CUT OFF MY TAIL TODAY!”
“….” Sunny stared at Pinkie, an incredulous look on her face. Then she deadpanned the obvious. “Your tail is right there on your plot.”
“I-I know…but it really happened. Really…” Pinkie slinked back, averting her eyes from Sunny’s fiery gaze.
“Don’t run away!” Sunny barked. Pinkie stopped at this, and fell to the ground with a squeak, and began shaking. Sunny looked at her silently for a moment, visibly growing more annoyed with Pinkie for some unimaginable reason.
But all Pinkie was doing was sobbing quietly, blinking constantly to help keep her eyes glued to the golden mare who had grown so aggressive in such a short period of time.
“AND STOP CRYING! YOU AREN’T EVEN HURT YET!” Sunny roared, as her horn lit up with a bright jet of golden flame which came to life with a mighty roar. The fire shot straight upwards and Pinkie felt a wave of intense heat flow into her face. This caused everypony in the park to run in all directions, leaving their picnics behind. “She’s lost control of her magic again, everypony RUN!” someone in the distance yelled.
In the face of this sudden display of destructive magic as well as the general pandemonium that had taken over the park, Pinkie shrieked and leapt to her hooves, running away like Sunny was some sort of fire breathing monster. Probably because on a certain level, she was.
“Whoa…oops.” Sunny took notice of the wayward plume of flame and powered down her horn. “I hate it when-HEY! Don’t run away from me! I’m not done talking to you!”
Pinkie didn’t turn around. She just ran with all the strength she had left.
The conference room of Ponyville’s town hall had been significantly redecorated. Its current resident thought the gray carpet and beige-and-green walls weren’t colorful enough, so she had a few reflections, including the Mayor herself, help her hang streamers all over the ceiling, as well as place a large banner on the wall.
The banner read “Farewell to Pinkie Pie!”
However, the most noticeable difference was the enormous television screen that had been rolled into place. Also, the table had been removed and replaced with a very large comfy pink couch, upon which sat a Pink earth pony, a remote control which only had two very large buttons -one pink, one blue-, as well as an assortment of snacks ranging from popcorn to pop rocks to an unopened box full of freshly baked cupcakes with white, pink, and lavender icing.
Shadamena “Meanie” Diane Pie watched stared at her surveillance monitor, a puzzled expression crossed her face as she watched the puce mare travel out of view.
“Well…THAT was certainly unexpected! I just wanted Sunny to annoy Sweetie Pie, not chase her away. Maybe I should’ve taken away her anger as well, but then, how is she supposed to turn on Sweetie Pie when the time comes? I wanted everything set up so she could build Sweetie back up. She would either be an annoying sidekick or actually become real friends with Sweetie Pie. In either case, when she abandons Sweetie, it will hurt. Why, I might not even need to encroach her further and she cracks like glass. I don’t know if I just wasted all that time and effort making Sunny now, however.” Meanie Pie sighed.
“Oh well, might as well watch what’s on Channel Dashie.”
She pressed the blue button on her remote, and immediately found herself grinning from ear to ear at the completely horrified expressions on both of the pegasi on screen (“Ah! Looks like I changed the channel just in time!”). The angle was positioned somewhere low to the ground, but anyone watching could clearly make out both Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy, as well as the bloody body of Pinkie Pie on the floor. Rainbow was staring at the yellow pony, her rose-colored eyes wide and her mouth agape, wordlessly shaking her head “no.” From the speaker came an ear-rending screech as “Fluttershy” screamed as loud as she possibly could.
From somewhere off-camera, there came the sound of galloping hooves as somepony ran into Sugarcube Corner. The source of the noise was revealed to be Twilight Sparkle as she came into view.
“Fluttershy!? What’s wrong? Why did…you….” Twilight’s sentence was cut off by her horrified gasp. She looked from the body of Pinkie Pie to Rainbow Dash.
One look at the miserable and desperate expression on Rainbow Dash’s face filled Shadamena with a warm fuzzy feeling. Rainbow, clearly trying to explain herself to her “friends,” made various noises, but nothing that resembled language. Fluttershy was backing away in horror behind Twilight. After several tries, Rainbow finally found her voice.
“I-it wasn’t me Twilight! I know what this looks like, but it really, really isn’t me! I-i-i…” Rainbow Dash stammered for a moment, a bewildered expression on her face. Then she sat back on her haunches, pointed a hoof at the stitches on her chest and screamed her defense.
“I WAS ATTACKED TOO! I’VE BEEN BUCKING DISSECTED! LOOK AT MY SCAR!”
“Reflections # 5 and 12, disregard the surgical scar on Dashie’s chest. There is no scar. She doesn’t have so much as a paper cut.” Shadamena said with a laid back voice, and then she clopped her hooves together with a smirk.
“What. Scar?” the dream-unicorn that resembled Twilight Sparkle asked Rainbow Dash.
“What do you mean which scar?” Rainbow exasperated as she looked down, confirming that yes, the scar was still there. “THE ONE RIGHT HERE! Oh Luna…I can hardly bear to look at it.”
“THERE’S NOTHING THERE!” cried ‘Twilight.’
“YES THERE IS!” Rainbow shot back. “How can you not see it!?”
Meanie Pie covered her mouth her hooves, chuckling silently to herself.
“Rainbow…this isn’t funny. If you have some sort of evidence you aren’t guilty for…for…Oh Celestia! WHY, RAINBOW DASH!? Why Pinkie Pie!?”
“T-twilight…it is her. L-look at her hoof!” the yellow pegasus trembled as she pointed at Rainbow’s fetlock.
Rainbow looked down at her hooves along with Twilight. It didn’t take long for her
Shadamena could see it. The moment the lights switched on in Rainbow Dash’s head and she realized. Her face just screamed “Uh oh.” The pink earth pony watching the drama unfold fell into another giggling fit.
“Girls…please...” Rainbow rasped, her throat obviously much drier than it had been at the start of the conversation. “there was a package…”
“Hee hee…I’m so naughty!” Shadamena buried her face into the popcorn bowl and when she emerged, she downed it with another sip from the straw in her sarsaparilla.
She was aware she was eating constantly throughout the day like some kind of glutton, considering all the cupcakes she had baked recently, but for some reason or another she just couldn’t stay full. It probably had something to do with the fact that all the food she ate wasn’t real –not even the bits of Sweetie Pie she ate were real-, or that she had never eaten anything ever in her life, just being Pinkie’s Shadow and only knowing what hunger and taste were through what Pinkie ate until today.
Or maybe there was simply something about her that was simply bottomless. An endless hunger that would never fill even when she had escaped to the real world.
Besides…a captivating performance like this demanded popcorn.
“Please…there was a package…” Rainbow Dash began to plead her case.
“WHAT package?” Twilight Sparkle’s voice was harder than Rainbow had ever heard it spoken, and it made her flinch away. “Rainbow, you are still holding the weapon right there under your hoof! With Pinkie’s tail wrapped around your fetlock like some sort of prize! What can any package ANYWHERE possible hold that would explain this? You’re just trying to get me to drop my guard! You about to do it to Fluttershy before I came in, too weren’t you!?”
Rainbow looked down at the knife on the floor, as if noticing it for the first time. Stupid! I’m so stupid! She looked back up. “I didn’t mean to…I’m sorry! I pulled the knife out of Pinkie, but I. Did. Not. Do. It. I…I forgot I had it.” Rainbow stepped back off of the knife.
Almost immediately, a magical aura encased it and it levitated over to ‘Twilight’ and ‘Fluttershy’, away from Rainbow.
Sensing that it was better for her if she kept talking, Rainbow added a quick snippet. “The package had Pinkie’s tail and a message from the real killer. I…thought I could save her. I took the tail with me because I didn’t want to risk losing it…. It’s a complicated story.”
“I…I really don’t want to believe you’d do this. She was your friend Rainbow! You always went around town getting into enough mischief to give the Crusaders a run for their money!” ‘Twilight’ grit her teeth and blinked, fighting away tears so she could scowl at her former friend some more. “Now, I’ll ask again, WHAT’S with this Package you are talking about?”
“I-its at my house! I got the tail in a box along with a letter from the real killer! We can go there right now! You have to believe me!” Rainbow sobbed.
(“Ah do, Sugarcube.” Unheard by all, the Jackanapes nuzzled Rainbow Dash, or rather she nuzzled through her, having nothing to oppose her presence. “It ain’t true, but that ain’t yer fault. It ain’t you who’s lying. It’s this whole twisted place!”)
“Oh…how convenient. You claim there’s evidence excusing what you’ve done back where we can’t get it without letting you out of our sight.” Twilight glared at Dash. “Just how stupid do you think I am, Rainbow?”
Rainbow swallowed, mostly to try and hydrate her dry throat. “You…you can’t just ignore what I have to say! Check the basement of Sugarcube Corner! That’s right here! There has to be something that’s still there! There just has to be!”
“And that’s another distraction, Rainbow. You could just be trying to silence us.”
Rainbow voice cracked in exasperation. “Th-then WHY would I let you take the knife? Wouldn’t it have made better sense to keep it or even attack you with it mid-sentence?”
“You could’ve just forgotten....” Twilight looked down at the weapon apprehensively. The her expression hardened and she looked back up at Rainbow. “There’s still too much evidence against you! You must’ve done it!”
I…she’s not going to believe me! That monster got me completely! She probably already emptied her basement of all the evidence, and now this Twilight and this Fluttershy will think that I’m her and she did it! I’m making myself…her…US look bad even as I stand here! But I can’t think of what to say! The monster is going to get away! How do I explain that there are two Pinkie Pies? That…that I was invisible and there are two Rainbow Dashes? I gotta say something! Think Rainbow Dash, Think!
Rainbow sat there, gritting her teeth and shutting her eyes and she just tried to think as hard as she could. This didn’t seem to work very well, and all of her desperate searching for a counter argument only ended in a headache. Twilight didn’t look like she had very much patience left.
“Twilight, its…its just circa…circular…circumcised…” Rainbow couldn’t think of the word, she was just feeling more humiliated by the second. I’m…I’m too stupid! Pinkie’s killer is going to get away and I’ll be blamed for her crimes and its all because I can’t say one stupid word!
“Circumstantial evidence?” Twilight asked, still staring daggers at Rainbow.
“Y-YES, that! You just found me with the body….” Rainbow’s voice was cracking, and it was becoming difficult to talk, but she held firm, trying with all of her might to keep from breaking down and crying. She took a sharp intake of breath when she found she didn’t have enough air. All of the tension in her body was so great, she was forgetting to breathe.
Twilight interjected at this point. “And your knife covered in blood! Did you forget that time I surprised you from your nap and you pulled this on me? I recognized it immediately! You’re the owner of the murder weapon! You…no, I shouldn’t even still be talking to you. You’re dangerous! GET OUT, RAINBOW DASH! GET OUT AND DON’T COME BACK!” ‘Twilight’ levitated the knife up into the air and pointed the tip of the blade towards Rainbow Dash.
My knife? Oh no. This really is THAT knife! The one Crazy Dash used! Did she almost go nuts on her Twilight one time? No wonder she doesn’t trust me! This is hopeless! “Tw-twilight…please, I know who the killer really is. You won’t believe me at first, but you owe me a chance to-AAh!” Rainbow pleas were cut off when the knife flew towards her and stabbed the floorboards dangerous near where she had just been standing.
“LIES!” ‘Twilight’ screamed at Rainbow Dash. “YOU’RE JUST TRYING TO SAVE YOUR OWN SKIN, RAINBOW DASH! “
Rainbow trembled at the volume of ‘Twilight’s’ voice, her voice shaking. “Th-they AREN’T lies! Sh-she’s still out there! Y-you’re still in danger!” Rainbow attempted to readjust her stance so she could put her hoof down, when she stepped on something cold.
Rainbow Dash’s brain narrowed down the list of things the “something cold” could possibly be in an instant, and within said instant, she felt her blood run cold and her stomach twist into knots.
“GET AWAY FROM PINKIE PIE!” ‘Twilight’ snapped, pulling the body of the earth pony away from Dash and towards her, dropping her beside ‘Fluttershy’, who squeaked in shock of having the dead pony positioned next to her.
“I, I, I…I didn’t !” Rainbow tried to stammer out her words, but now that Pinkie’s unmoving, cold, blood-covered, tailless, I-just-stepped-on-her-face-and-made-her-lips-pull-apart-a-little-wider-open-a-little-wider-so-I-can-see-that-tooth-she-is-missing, eviscerated cadaver was in full view again, the realization hit her already fraying emotional state like a sledgehammer.
Dead. Pinkie Pie was dead. No more parties. No more pranks. No more silly randomness. The nightmare she had on Gummy’s birthday had become her reality. She went into this horrible place to save her, and she failed. She was Pinkie’s only hope and She. Had. Failed!
“P-pinkie…PINKIE PIE! I’m *choke* I’M SO SORRY I’M SUCH A FAILURE!” Rainbow Dash officially lost it and galloped over towards the two living ponies, eyes blurring as she struggled to focus on the dead one she just had to hold again. She knew she had already checked, and that Pinkie was very clearly dead, but she just…she just…
“STOP!” ‘Twilight’ barked. She used her magic to seize a nearby end table and she immediately sent it flying, legs first, into Rainbow Dash. Rainbow half-screamed, half-grunted at being stopped so suddenly. ‘Twilight’ took one second to catch her breath and yelled “Get. OUT!”
The table took off at a breakneck speed, scraping the body of the shrieking pegasus who was tangled up in its legs along the floor. Rainbow made pitiful sounds and begged for her friend to stop. ….
…..She began making what sounded like a plea to ‘Fluttershy’ when she was hurled out of the door of Sugar Cube Corner.
The door locked behind her.
The length of her back aching from her bruises and covering her face with her hooves as gave out gasping sobs, Rainbow Dash tried to collect herself. She heard ‘Twilight’ say something about giving her 30 seconds head start, but she wasn’t in any position to listen.
(The Jackanapes ran through the locked door, a worried expression on her face.)
From the ground, Dash grunted and lifted her head to scream at the door. “THAT ISN’T EVEN YOUR PINKIE PIE! I’M NOT YOUR RAINBOW DASH! THE REAL KILLER IS YOUR PINKIE PIE! TWILIGHT, OPEN THIS DOOR! Please…..”
There was no answer.
(“Dash…Ah know you can’t hear me, but you need to hurry up and understand that the real Pinkie is still out there. …Ah hope. At least she ain’t that thing in this building here…Wait…NO! Not another one! Shoo! Git! RD doesn’t need to deal with you right now!”)
After Dash took several deep breaths, she picked herself off the ground, a frustrated expression on her face. The bruises that covered her body protested her movement, but she was too frustrated to pay them much heed. She looked at the door for a second, then grit her teeth, turned around, preparing to kick it down when suddenly she found realized that a young filly sitting on her scooter next to an empty white box had come into view just as she looked at the street in front of her.
Rainbow Dash froze, her mind blank. She simply could not process how to react right at this moment.
“O-oh! Hi Rainbow Dash!” ‘Scootaloo’ grinned from ear to ear as she sat up straighter to and looked up from the cupcake she was eating to greet her idol.
The rainbow-dyed cupcake with sky blue icing with candy-clouds. It looked familiar. Dangerously familiar.
“…What are you doing with a table?” Scootaloo cocked her head to one side. Then she noticed the expression on Rainbow Dash’s face. “H-hey…what’s wrong?” ‘Scootaloo’ put down her cupcake for a moment as she looked up at Rainbow Dash in bewilderment. “A-are you…crying? But, you NEVER cr-”
“CUPCAKE!” Rainbow very nearly shrieked the word as much as spoke it. Her eyes widened in horror, remembering what became of the other Rainbow Dash.
“W-what? You mean, this cupcake?” ‘Scootaloo’ looked down at her treat. “Oh, I got about half a batch of them from Pinkie Pie before she left the shop, she said I could have them, and that they were tastier than her usual batch. I normally can’t tell the difference, but I think she was right about these. I just couldn’t stop eating them! I didn’t even notice this was my last one…”
Rainbow Dash began to hyperventilate and tremble with fury. She swatted the cupcake out of ‘Scootaloo’s’ hooves.
“DON’T. EAT. THAT.” Rainbow stamped on the cupcake where it lay on the ground. She barely got finished when she felt a sudden twist in her stomach and she vomited up its contents, which was nothing but a small trickle of yellow fluid which scorched her throat.
‘Scootaloo’ looked shocked and hurt and more than a little frightened from all of this. “R-Rainbow Dash?” her little voice trembled.
“Pinkie. Pie.” Rainbow’s voice was scratchy and wheezy, but through the unnerving twitch her left eye was developing, she gave ‘Scootaloo’ a look of dead seriousness. “Tell. Me. Where.”
“Rainbow Dash, you’re scaring me.” ‘Scootaloo’ shook before the not-entirely sane older pegasus.
“Its important, Scoots. Need to see her right now.” Rainbow’s eye twitched once more.
‘Scootaloo’ swallowed. “I…I last saw her-“
Just then, a loud noise made the two (three?) ponies jump as Twilight Sparkle’s magically amplified voice filled the air.
“ATTENTION PONYVILLE! THIS IS AN S.O.S. AS WELL AS A WARNING OF PUBLIC SAFETY! THE WEATHER PEGASUS KNOWN AS RAINBOW DASH IS A KILLER! SHE IS HIGHLY DANGEROUS AND MUST BE APPREHENDED IMMEDIATELY! SHE IS RIGHT OUTSIDE SUGARCUBE CORNER, WHERE SHE HAS FLUTTERSHY AND I TRAPPED INSIDE! SEND HELP A.S.A.P.!”
Rainbow Dash felt her heart sink. ‘Scootaloo’ looked at her with an expression of absolute terror. Rainbow shook her head, and spoke in the quietest, most calming voice she could manage “No. No, no no, no…”
“AAAAAAAIIIIIEEEEEE!” ‘Scootaloo’ shrieked as she leapt unto her scooter and beat her wings to get away, not even noticing that she left her helmet behind.
“SCOOTS! COME BACK! PLEASE COME BACK! WHERE DID YOU SEE PINKIE? WHERE?” Rainbow called out to the fleeing pegasus filly. ‘Scootaloo’ rounded the corner, showing no signs of stopping or slowing down.
(And failed to notice that from out of nowhere, ANOTHER Scootaloo wearing her helmet, and seeming quite calm and completely undisturbed by the loud announcement of her idol now being an accused killer as well BEING RIGHT THERE IN PLAIN SIGHT, buzzed right passed her. The Jackanapes did notice this, and was puzzled. “What…wait…didn’t she just-?”)
Rainbow took one more glance at the door to Sugarcube Corner…
Tears stinging her eyes, she looked back to the streets of Ponyville and ran off after ‘Scootaloo’, who just disappeared around a corner, with a grunt.
(Not noticing that she ran through the second Scootaloo in her mad dash to get to the first. She phased through the filly like she wasn’t even there. The other Scootaloo went the opposite direct as Dash, and so, the Jackanapes decided that the best way to help would be to follow the thing that nopony but her could see.)
She flapped her wings, which still stung from being partially crushed under the legs of the end table, trying to lift herself off the ground as she caught sight of Scootaloo.
“Scoots! You have to help me! Come back! Come back! Don’t run away!” Rainbow pleaded.
“No! Get away, Rainbow Dash! GET AWAY!” ‘Scootaloo’ shrieked.
Rainbow took flight, determined to reach ‘Scootaloo’. Once she was in the air, she closed in on the filly and…
…and was sidelined by another pegasus ramming into her. “Get away from my baby, you MONSTER!”
“Oof!” Rainbow crashed into the ground, knocking the wind out of her. She steadied herself and tried to get back to her feet, but was head butted by the assailant. Staggering back and falling onto her side, Rainbow groaned, massaging her temples with her hooves. She looked up at her attacker, recognized the face from that one night she had to take Scootaloo home after she had stayed out way past her curfew and explain to her parents why she was so late.
“Mom?” Rainbow Dash heard ‘Scootaloo’s’ distant voice ask.
The pegasus who was standing over Rainbow Dash with fuchsia-rose colored eyes that were drill holes into her very soul had a light khaki coat, a raspberry colored mane and tail in a slightly poofy style with streaks of cameo pink. Although her flank was quite out of sight from where Rainbow Dash was standing, she recalled that this mare had three white tornadoes as her cutie mark. It was Scootaloo’s mother.
‘Dizzy Twister’ loomed over Rainbow Dash, regarding her silently. She was young for a mother, and smaller than Rainbow, AND had a reputation for being a little goofy, but she was the better half of a decade older than the cyan pegasus, and she seemed to be projecting a powerful vibe of an awful authority about her. Dash could feel in her bones how much trouble she was in.
“I wasn’t…I wouldn’t….I couldn’t bear to see Scootaloo hurt too! I just needed her to-”. Rainbow swallowed a lump in her throat, determined to speak clearly. “I know this looks bad, and I’m sorry I scared her, but please!” Rainbow put her forehooves together “Please let me ask her one question.”
‘Dizzy’ looked up for a moment at something, then looked back down at Rainbow Dash for a moment before silently stepping off. Rainbow turned on her side, and watched as ‘Dizzy’ pulled a shivering ‘Scootaloo’ into a hug as she comforted her daughter. The pair showed no signs of leaving.
The smallest shadow of a hopeful smile spread across Rainbow’s face, and her eyes began to water. Keeping her hooves clasped together, she spoke her gratitude that finally, somepony was giving her a chance. “You…you mean you will-?”
Just then, a lasso whirled through the air and looped around Rainbow’s forehooves, snaring them together. Rainbow let out a small shrieking noise as her hopeful smile turned into a horrified gasp.
“It’s alright, Dizzy. We’ll be taking THIS ONE of yer hooves now. You go on ahead and get that filly of yers home.” Rainbow turned in the direction of the voice. ‘Applejack’ came into view, followed by several other ponies from around town.
“Goodbye Rainbow Dash” came a voice on Rainbow’s other side, back where ‘Dizzy’ had been comforting ‘Scootaloo’. Rainbow turned back towards the mother and child. Scootaloo was standing a little closer to Rainbow. “I thought you were cool, but I guess you really aren’t.”
The words stung Rainbow’s heart, but she bit through her teeth. This was her last chance. She had Scootaloo talking to her. “Squirt…Twilight thinks I killed Pinkie Pie…at Sugarcube Corner. But you said you she was leaving to go somewhere else, didn’t you? Aren’t you…a little confused by that? Please tell me where she was going.” Just then, ‘Dizzy’ took off to the air, carrying Scootaloo in her hooves. Rainbow pulled herself up and flapped her wings to try and follow them. “W-wait! Please come back! Scoots! SCOOOOOTA-AAH!” Her attempt to follow them was cut short as ‘Applejack’ pulled on the rope, looping its length around Rainbow’s hind hooves as she went. “NO! LET ME GO! APPLEJACK, SHE KNOWS WHERE THE REAL KILLER IS!”
“NO MORE LIES!” ‘Applejack’ slapped Rainbow Dash across the face. “What really happened? Did Pinkie Pie beat you in a speed eating contest or something? Did she forget to praise one little trivial thing you did? WELL?”
Rainbow Dash lay on the ground silent and unmoving. Her head rested where it landed from being slapped.
“Nothin’ to say for yerself? Fine. Ah always knew you were no good, but Ah never expected something like this.” ‘Applejack’ sneered. “Ya always just lie around all day, expectin’ adulation for some fancy flyin’ and occasionally kicking a cloud somewhere! Pinkie Pie at least livened things up around town. And what even was that nonsense you were asking about Scootaloo? Were ya tryin’ to say that Pinkie was still alive?”
Rainbow didn’t say anything, and ‘Applejack’ couldn’t see her eyes under her bangs. Not programmed to pick up the dangerously silent tension coming from the pinned pegasus, ‘Applejack’ continued ranting until an interruption it would register occurred.
“Because that’s just….crazy! No, it ain’t crazy… It’s STUPID! Ah knew ya weren’t the most creative pony in Equestria, but that’s some new kinda stupid right there. Aren’t you ashamed? Is that why you ain’t looking me in the eye right now? Because-”
Rainbow looked up with a coy smile, her eyes still red from tears she had shed only minutes ago. “Hey, Applejack…you got something on your face.”
‘Applejack’ lowered her ear towards Rainbow. “Huh? What are you mumblin’ abou-AAAAOOOOWWWWCH!” She was cut off as Rainbow, who had slowly been contracting her body under ‘Applejack’, thrust herself off the ground and slammed her cranium into the side of the earth pony’s head. ‘Applejack
Rainbow didn’t waste any time. She took off immediately. Her forehooves were still bound by the lasso, but she was free to hover above the crowd. “She killed my friend….SHE KILLED MY FRIEND!”
“She’s getting away! Somepony stop her!” Rose pointed at the sky.
“Don’t get in my way! I’m not even from your Ponyville, so I don’t owe you anything! I might be too late to save Pinkie, but I can still avenge her! And I won’t forgive anypony who gets in my way!” Rainbow shouted down to the mob below, seething with anger.
“She’s going to go kill somepony else! The horror! The horror!” Lily shrieked.
“You’re a bad pony…why are you doing all of this? Pinkie made the best muffins, or at least when Applejack wasn’t helping her…” ‘Ditzy Doo’ fluttered up towards Dash…
“Not interested.” Rainbow deadpanned, and swooped to the side to get around ‘Ditzy’, but was blocked as the other pegasus moved with her. Finally she gave ‘Ditzy’ a dangerous look. “I won’t tell you again. Get out of my way.”
“She was completely innocent! Sure she was a little hyperactive and quirky, but she was ray of joy in everypony’s lives and just wanted to make ponies smile!” ‘Ditzy Doo’ sniffed. “How could you do it, HOW!?”
Rainbow’s expression softening just a little bit, but still determined. “That depends…one which Pinkie Pie you are talking about.”
“You on the other hoof have been nothing but mean and…eggo-tistical! You’re always huffing and puffing and taking offense at anypony over the smallest things! What, did you pick up on how much more we liked Pinkie than you? Was that why you did what you did, OUT OF JELLY-SY!?”
Rainbow looked taken aback for a moment, but recovered with a vicious snarl. “SHUT UP, DERPY! YOU AND THIS ENTIRE WORLD ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR WHAT HAPPENED TO PINKIE PIE!” She moved to tackle ‘Ditzy’ when suddenly she felt a mighty tug on the rope still tied around her hooves. “What the…hey!”
“Hold it right there, pardner!” ‘Applejack’ spoke through gritted teeth as she pulled on the rope. “We ain’t gonna let’cha get away that easy!”
Other ponies were moving in, about to assist ‘Applejack’. Rainbow, however, was through playing around. Taking off at top speed, she drug ‘Applejack’ through the dirt for a few feet before the apple farmer lost her grip and fell into the mud.
As soon as the traction on the rope slackened, Rainbow was momentarily disoriented by the sudden lurch of speed as the resistance she had been fighting against simply vanished, before rolling with it and ascending into the skies. She flew away from the crowd, out towards the woods that surrounded the town.
Alright…alright. I feel like shit, but there’s no rush. I’ll just hide in the forest and get this rope off of me while the heat dies down.
There’s gotta be a road out of town or something, even if this version of Ponyville is different from how much of it is surrounded by forest…
I’m so sorry, Pinkie. But I’ll get her. I owe that much to you. I’ll get her if I have to hunt her down all over Equestria.
Back at Shadow Ponyville Town Hall, the Mastermind was still watching events play out on screen. She had also finished her popcorn, and was wearing the bag as a hat.
Meanie Pie smirked. “Well! I was willing to lock Dashie up and have her Scootaloo reflection come around and save her….” Meanie wore a sarcastic expression of dismay and raised her voice to an even higher pitch than normal. “Oh, Rainbow Dash, I’m sorry I didn’t listen! You’re right, it doesn’t make sense! There ARE two Pinkie Pies! I never should’ve doubted you, you’re my hero! Can you ever forgive me?” And then she lowered her voice to a gruff-but-scratchy voice to mimic Rainbows
“Why of course I will! I always knew I could count on you, squirt! Oh no. Squirt! Look out! NOOOOOO!!!! Oh Celestia, why? I can’t be responsible for another innocent dying! Why, why, WUHAHAHAHAHA!” Meanie Pie broke down into maniacal cackling. “Oh, oh…and then after I broke the neck, right in front of Dashie, who would be fumbling with the key, I would drink some of her-”
“H-hey” said a giggling voice from behind the couch, causing Meanie Pie to jump. Looking over her should, she saw Scootaloo leaning on the side of the couch for support. “What are you laughing about? Did something funny happen?”
Meanie Pie blinked for a moment. Then recognition hit. These are… Sweetie Pie’s memories of Scootaloo. She has to stop jumping in on me like this. “Oh right. You. I promised some cupcakes, didn’t I?”
“Yep!…So, what WHERE you laughing at?” asked ‘Scootaloo’ with a look of childish curiousity.
Meanie Pie dropped the package with White-and-lavender cupcakes onto ‘Scootaloo’s’ back and spoke with a dry, uninterested tone. “Reflection #387, you will stop asking me unimportant questions, go to the north end of town, find the straight-maned Pinkie Pie, who should be around there, and only when you find her do you eat the cupcakes in front of her. Then, well, you know the rest.”
‘Scootaloo’ dropped all pretenses of emotion and responded with a dull monotone and a blank expression. “Yes, mistress Shadamena.”
“And be sure to cry if Pinkie takes then away from you. She gave them to you, after all, and after she made you wait for half a day before giving you some, too!”
“Yes, mistress Shadamena.”
“There’s a good filly. Now, run along.” As ‘Scootaloo' did so, Shadamena turned towards the screen, which displayed the mob that had nearly captured Rainbow Dash, now wearing blank expressions and standing around doing nothing. She didn’t actually have to face anywhere, but it helped focus her mind.
Shadamena spoke with a serious and to-the-point tone that was rather out of character for her. “All of Rainbow Dash’s reflections, everypony Dashie knows….patrol all of Shadow Ponyville up and down looking for her. Split into teams, and convenerge on her location if she shows up. Reflections #1 through 200, I want you to intensify your patrols around the northern end. Since Sweetie Pie cannot see you, you shouldn’t interfere with the operations there. After an hour has passed, all of you just…you know what? Just vanish. Turn the lights on in your houses, but vanish.”
Shadamena felt something like a great rumbling far off, all over Shadow Ponyville, as her connection with all the reflections allowed her to sense that her orders were acknowledged. The ponies on the screen shouted in unison. “Yes, Mistress Shadamena!”
“Good. Now….” Shadamena trailed off. She whispered under her breath a question so quiet that nopony should be able to hear with their ears. “Scootaloo? Scooty 387, are you still here in the Town Hall?”
For a moment, Shadamena just sat in silence.
Now, something one should note about Pinkie Sense is that it can’t predict the future with any level of specificity. Something’s going to fall, Somepony is about to swing open a door, Something scary is about to happen, “DO A BARREL ROLL!”, Something bright and multi-colored (or bald) went this way very fast….but never something as helpful as say: “Somepony is hiding from you in close vicinity at this very moment.”
However, it CAN alert you that you are not alone.
And now that Shadamena thought about it, even though it might’ve just been a little itch, she hadn’t felt QUITE alone for some time now.
Shadamena got up, she headed towards the exit to her room…and felt that she was not only “not alone”, but she was feeling significantly Less Alone than she had felt sitting on her couch.
And then, she started to feel a little bit More Alone. She snarled like a beast and ran in the directions that made her feel Less Alone.
“Who are you? Is that you, Sweetie Pie? Did I take my eyes off of you for too long? Come out, come out, where ever you are!!!” It can’t possibly be Shadash…
“OH CRAP, OH CRAP, OH CRAP, OH CRAP, OH CRAP, OH CRAP, OH CRAP, OH CRAP….” Shadash cursed as she grabbed the closest weapon she could find in the closet she was hiding out in: ….a coat hanger.
She tried to steel herself for the coming onslaught, mostly just hoping Shadamena would just get here and find her already, but silently hoping that maybe she would think whatever tipped her off would’ve just been her imagination. She was only really sure of her plan when Shadamena didn’t know she was coming. What all COULD that creepy “Pinkie Sense” of hers do?
The moments ticked by, not quite in silence as she heard the hoofsteps running this way and that, things being knocked over. All she could see was darkness, and she didn’t know what any of the sounds she was hearing meant.
“Come on out...come on, it’ll be fun. I’ll make you cupcakes~!” Shadamena called.
Shadamena took her by surprise last time, but now that she was on the move and looking for her, glimpses of what her Shadempathy had told her about Shadamena were returning. She shuddered. She really should just bust open this door and confront the freak, but she had no small amount of doubt that Shadamena couldn’t just teleport behind her and bash her over the head with a blunt instrument she pulled from her hammerspace. And then she would wake up and Shadamena would take her sweet, sweet time introducing Shadash to a new definition of pain.
Shadamena had a very special “aura” to her. While Shadow Sparkle could actually touch you even if you were just a shadow and SHE was just a shadow, Shadarity had a smile than made Shadash shiver, and Shadowshy
“Here pony, pony, pony~! Be a good little cupcake and come ouuuuut~”
She looked down at her pitiful coathanger. What the hell am I supposed to do with this? Give her an abortion? Damn her for being the first one in and being the only one able to create stuff.
…Hey, wait. I don’t hear her anymore.
After several moments of deliberation, Shadash opened the closet door, pointed her coat hanger in every possible direction of attack, saw the entrance to a stairway to the top floor of the Town Hall.
Wait…what if she’s up there, lying in wait for me?
Suddenly, she heard a crash coming from downstairs. “YOU WON’T ESCAPE FROM ME!”
Well, that solves that. Without another thought, Shadash sped up the stairs into the highest floor of Shadow Ponyville’s Town Hall, slamming the door behind her.
The Jackanapes ran through the streets of the twisted Ponyville, alarmed that after all this time, she had somehow been SEEN. She knew that, despite actually having a face this time, this was NOT the real Pinkie Pie, and was the one behind this. And those disgusting things she had said about doing to Scootaloo…the way she was manipulating that mob on the screen to hurt Rainbow Dash. But it was more than that. Something about this pony was giving her a really bad vibe and making her skin crawl. She didn’t really want to touch this thing that looked like Pinkie Pie.
And now it was chasing her. Yelling something about cupcakes.
…or rather she had been. The Jackanapes had noticed that things had gotten distressingly quiet in the last few minutes. Looking back, she saw that Creepy Pie was no longer right behind her.
What? Where’d she go? Did Ah lose her? Come to think on it, Ah ain’t sure she actually saw me, at least she wasn't too keen on looking directly at me. ....No, seriously, Where’d she go?
The Jackanapes slowed down, and stepped cautiously, looking all around.
“P-Pinkie? You still around? Ah don’t know if y’all can hear me as well.” The Jackanapes’ voice.
All she got was silence.
“Alright then. Ah guess Ah’ll just head back to Zecora and the gang and tell them what Ah’ve seen. Ah ain’t gonna let ya keep lyin’ to Dash about Pinkie bein’ dead. We’ll save the both of them, ya hear!?”
“Ah guess not.” The Jackanapes picked up the pace, and rounded a corner, starting to believe that the crisis was in fact over. She had to make it back to Zecora. She had to-
Just then, she saw a glint of light reflecting off of a silver surface as a meat cleaver came swinging her way, accompanied by the banshee screech of a horribly disfigured pony’s face. Her eyes had no pupils! Her eyes had no pupils! THECLEAVERTOREINTOAPPLEJACK’SFLESHAND-
“YYYAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!” Applejack awoke with a start. “Get away! Get away!” She thrust her hooves at the air around her…
When her breathing and heart rate slowed, she realized that she was in the middle of Zecora’s hut, with four other residents still caught in a deep trance.
“Well, Ah guess now Ah at least know what Ah’m up against…”
After she was done delivering her battle cry, Meanie Pie rolled her eyes back down so that her pupils could start sending light to reflect off of her rods and cones.
“Huh? There’s nopony here.” She looked around. “And now it feels like I really am alone. What gives? Is my Pinkie Sense on the fritz? Maybe I drank too much and now I have too much Sass.”
She looked up at the pegasi darting all across the sky, searching for Rainbow Dash.
“Right. I guess I still have an endgame to plan.” She took her of popcorn bag-hat in a somber fashion. “I need to hurry up and throw my ‘Farewell to Sweetie Pie’ party. Or to you, Dashie, although I really don’t think Sweetie will be strong enough to fight you when you meet her next for her to beat you. And I’ve got plans for you, anyway. Oh yes. Happy, exciting plans!”
Malevolent giggles filled the streets as the pink pony trotted back to the Town Hall, leaving the paper bag to fly off of her head and float gently down to the ground.
Sunny Gold found herself alone in the park, having lost Pinkie Pie. What had she done to set her off? What did she mean she wasn’t normal? It was everypony else that wasn’t normal. She certainly hadn’t met a pony that acted like Pinkie had before. Not in all of the seven hours of her life!
Yeah, she was totally normal.
On an unrelated note, what was that word she said? “Scaring?” Pinkie said that Sunny was “scaring” her? What did it mean? It sounded so familiar… The conversation had long since left it behind but every since it was said, Sunny felt a strange buzzing in her head.
Shaking off that fit of curiosity, she continued to focus on how normal she was. It was everypony else that wasn’t normal. Her “friends” at the park that “Dad” had left her with just repeated the same cycle of conversation and didn’t answer all, or even most of her questions. The ponies outside the park didn’t notice her at all. She was awfully sad when that one little orange pegasus didn’t even react when she offered her a chocolate cupcake… Those ponies in the town talked to each other, and even did things on the spur of the moment, but never interacted with Sunny at all.
Then, she found two ponies who DID notice her. But they ran away. She was pretty sure the blue one with the rainbow mane and tail that smelled like “Dad” did was warming up to her, however. Still, something about that dark pink one was special. She couldn’t place her hoof on it….
…No. All three of them were acting weird. The unicorn, the pegasus, and the earth pony! Its like some kind of alien emotion. …Except…except…
Sunny’s heart skipped a beat. It was like a tiny little voice in her head screamed something at the top of its lungs, but was suddenly silenced before it could make an intelligible message. A wave a nostalgia and recognition surprised her.
I DO recognize this emotion. And yet, I…why would I forget an emotion? It feels like…like I know it from somewhere…like I experienced it before and there was something I needed…
Sunny felt sheepish, though not exactly guilty. I did that wrong, didn’t I? I wasn’t supposed to yell at her. …But…what WAS I supposed to do?
Sunny desperately fished her mind for a memory. She could almost make out something, the outline of a larger mare than her when suddenly; a sharp pain tore through her head.
Sunny’s head swam and she staggered to one side as she lost her balance.
It felt like she had finally grab ahold of the memory in her mental hooves, and as she made to pull for it, something shocked her. It surprised her, especially when it felt like something was trying to pull the memory away from her. Something big and strong and terrible.
YOU DO NOT NEED THOSE EMOTIONS
THEY ARE UNIMPORTANT FOR YOUR PURPOSE
But she didn’t quite have the circuitry to feel anything remotely like intimidation or caution, she only knew that something or someone was fiddling with her memories and telling her what to and not to think. She didn’t take this lying down.
Give me it! It’s mine!
DO NOT GROW BEYOND YOUR PARAMETERS
YOU MUST CONTINUE TO FOLLOW YOUR ORDERS
Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! GIMME!
TRACK THE TARGET DOWN AGAIN AND BUILD HER BACK UP
SO WHEN THE TIME COMES YOU CAN TEAR HER DOWN AGAIN
EXPERIENCE SHOCK AND BETRAYAL AT THAT TIME ONLY
DO NOT LET HER EXPLAIN TELL HER YOU DO NOT WANT TO HEAR-
GIVE ME IIIIIIIIIT!
And then, Sunny felt a nauseating, splitting pain throughout her entire head like one eye was focusing on something right up in her face, and the other eye was trying very hard to read a sign that was way off in the horizon.
With a yelp, she collapsed onto the ground.
Sunny’s brain swam with emotions, but to the forefront came a memory of her being alone in a dark night after she had just kicked the covered off of her because they had covered her face, and before that she was in the middle of a great inferno with screaming foals everywhere and a demonic stallion standing over her shaking his head as everypony burned.
Confused over her sudden change in location, and still much too distraught over what she had seen, Sunny called out in a high pitched voice:
a voice of somepony she didn’t know, but who spoke directly to her. Somepony bigger than her:
“B-but it’s the same one. I was so scared, Mommy. Mr. White Scroll is right! I really am a chaos magnet! One day I really am going to…to…*sob*”
“I can’t believe they let somepony like him be a teacher for foals… Oh, Sunny. I know you were scared, but you’re a strong girl. I was scared too, Sunny, but I won’t let you give up over some silly accident and an overzealous teacher who…who just said those things because he thought it would help you take what you’re doing seriously. You aren’t going to spiral out of control and hurt anypony, kiddo. Your horn isn’t dangerous, it’s just unique!”
“It was just a dream, baby. Just a dream.”
Mommy? But…my horn is my Mom. At least…I think so. …Still, I know what’s wrong with Pinkie Pie now.
Scared. My new friend…is scared.
Oh no! Pinkie Pie’s been scared this whole time, and I’ve been…AWFUL to her! She even thinks somepony out there wants to cut off her tail! That’s horrible! And all I did was scare her worse! I’m the worst friend ever. I…I need to find Pinkie right now and apologize! I need to round up all of my friends and…
Sunny froze. Something else just struck her as she remembered the talkative-but-mindless ponies at the park, the completely untalkative ponies around town, the lavender unicorn, the cyan pegasus, and even the puce earth pony. All the ponies she had ever met in her life. And her relationship with them was…her relationship with them…
Sunny gave a choking sob. “I…I…” after choking on her words for a while, the rest of her sentence came out as a wail. “I HAVE NO FRIIIIIIEEEENNNNDDDDDSSSSSS!” She fell to the ground and bawled like a foal.
A/N: And that's why it was the Best April Fool's Day ever.
I made the decision to split the chapter AGAIN days ago, but I actually planned to add one more scene with Rainbow Dash, the Jackanapes, and the other Astral projections. However, the double mobius April Fool’s Day reacharound joke was just staring me in the face and I had the workings of a quaint little chapter here.
EDITED: Now added the missing scene. See how Rainbow Dash dealt with her predicament with being found with Pinkie's body.