"Now, who'd like to present their art project next?" Cheerilee smiled, cheerily.
"Ooh, me! Me!" Scootaloo waved her hoof in the air ecstatically, then made her way to the front of the class. She unrolled her artwork for all the others to see.
"What is it?" One of the colts in the front row asked.
"It's Rainbow Dash's very own Sonic Rainboom!" Scootaloo replied. "Isn't it obvious?"
The class nodded slowly, nopony feeling like criticising her masterpiece: a blue blob surrounded by random splatters of rainbow paint and glitter.
"Great job, Scootaloo!" Cheerilee said, trying to smile. "It's a very... abstract piece of work?"
Scootaloo grinned and trotted proudly back to her seat.
"Now, who's next?"
Apple Bloom's hoof shot straight up in the air.
"Apple Bloom!" Sweetie Belle loudly whispered to the filly beside her. "I thought you didn't do your homework!"
"Ah managed to pull something together last minute," Apple Bloom replied, marching to the front, her eyes twitching ever so slightly.
She unrolled her canvas out onto the table, colts and fillies gathering around to take a look at her hard work. Most of the canvas was blank, but right in the middle, stuck onto the centre with Blu-Tack, was...
"Um, Apple Bloom? That's just a photograph of The Frying Pones."
"With ABxDR written on it," Scootaloo added.
Apple Bloom gestured frantically at the photo. "Do you not see? The Frying Pones are a work of art! Look at their beautiful faces! That's a routine of cleanse, tone and moisturise, everypony!"
"No, that's just makeup," one of their classmates added with a deadpan expression.
Cheerilee put a hoof on Apple Bloom's shoulder sympathetically. "Apple Bloom, it's very nice that you appreciate this band so much, but I think you've misinterpreted the assignment question."
"Misinterpreted shmisinterpreted. Ya told us to create a masterpiece! Well lemme tell ya, TFP are a living masterpiece. If you ponies can't see it, then that's your problem!"
She snatched her canvas off the table, rolled it back up and hurled it onto Cheerilee's desk with all the power her tiny hooves could muster. It landed squarely on the table, but tumbled off.
"There! You'd better mark that so good, it could join me and the rest of the CMCs!" She stormed back to her seat, her classmates all gaping at her as if she had gone mad. Scratch that, she had gone mad.
Cheerilee shook off her confusion, staring sternly at Apple Bloom, who had pulled out a Bluehoof speaker and had started blasting TFP music.
"Apple Bloom! Stop that right this instant or I will contact your sister!"
Apple Bloom couldn't hear her. She was headbanging violently, playing air guitar on the table.
Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo glanced at each other, their hearts, once as strong as horses, sinking.
What had they done?
"... And did you know? Woodland Breeze, the bass player? His favourite food is apple pie. My favourite food is apple pie! How crazy is that?"
"Apples are a staple food in Equestria," Sweetie Belle replied monotonously. "Most ponies' favourite food is apple pie. It's not that crazy."
"But it's apple pie. Apple pie. That's half of mah name! So technically, I'm 50% his favourite pony!"
"Can't argue with that logic," Scootaloo sighed.
The trio were heading for the clubhouse, just as they did every Friday afternoon, Apple Bloom skipping along without a care in the world, her friends trudging wearily beside her, their eyes haggard and exhausted from having to deal with Apple Bloom's antics. During lunch, the yellow filly had went around the cafeteria, asking students for their uneaten apple cores so she could start a collection.
"Applecores!" She had bellowed, banging a spoon onto a tray. "Give 'em to me!"
Up above, the sun was just beginning to set, but Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle only wished it would set faster.
"When we get back to the clubhouse, let's listen to TFP's new album. Well, it hasn't been officially released yet, but..." She dropped her voice to a whisper and winked. "... Ah know a way to find it, if you know what Ah mean."
"Mhm." Sweetie Belle grunted.
"Oh, aaand they're coming to Ponyville next week for a live concert! Can you believe it? Them! Here! The Frying Pones!"
"Have fun." Scootaloo replied.
"Wow, Ah really hope Big Mac buys me a ticket. Ah really wanna hear 'em live! And maybe, just maybe..." Her starstruck eyes glinted in the sun. "Ah'll get to meet 'em! Just imagine —"
"Well!" Sweetie Belle interrupted. "That's my cue to leave. See you later guys!"
Apple Bloom frowned. "Weren't you coming to the clubhouse today? We were going to listen to —"
"The Frying Pones. Yes. I know," Sweetie Belle groaned. "But I really want to go home now. I'll see you on Monday."
"Aren't we going to hang out on the weekend —"
"I'll see you on Monday!" Sweetie yelled, her back already turned.
Apple Bloom and Scootaloo watched as the unicorn filly dashed off, until eventually, she disappeared over the horizon.
"Huh. Ah could've sworn her house was in the other direction," Apple Bloom muttered. Then her face lit up. "But you're still coming to the clubhouse, Scoots, so—"
"Actually, I've already got plans," Scootaloo hurriedly replied.
"Plans? What plans?"
"I... uh... have to help Rainbow Dash."
"Uh... Gardening," she hastily invented.
Apple Bloom narrowed her eyes. "Rainbow Dash lives on a cloud. She ain't got no gardenin' to do."
"Gardening... for a friend!" Scootaloo added. "Heh, those pesky weeds, eh? Heh, heh, anyway, bye!"
She scooted off in the other direction, leaving behind a plume of dust in her wake.
“Welp, their loss,” Apple Bloom shrugged, then went on her way.
With nothing else to do and nopony else to be with, Apple Bloom made her way back to the farmhouse, only to open the doors to her sister's furious rage.
"Apple Bloom! What in tarnation have yah been up to?! The school called, and yah've been suspended! Somethin' 'bout causing a havoc in the class?!"
"Oh. Right. That," Apple Bloom shrugged nonchalantly, dismissing the fact with a wave of her hoof. "What can Ah say? They didn't appreciate TFP enough; why should Ah appreciate them?"
"Why you... You..." Applejack was at a loss for words. "Just wait till your brother gets home; he'll give ya a right talking to, all right..."
"Hey, yeah! Thanks for reminding me, Ah've gotta ask Big Mac for the TFP concert tickets Ah asked him to get." Apple Bloom turned to head out to the orchards to find her brother, but Applejack caught her by the ear.
"Hey! What gives?" The filly complained.
"You ain't going to no concert," Applejack said through gritted teeth. "Not until you learn how to control yourself! You've been suspended, for goodness' sake!"
Apple Bloom shook herself free from her sister's iron grip and stomped her hoof on the ground angrily, creating a little dent in the floorboards. "Just you wait and see. Nothin' can stop me from being the best Fryfan there ever was!"
"Oh Big Mac!"
Apple Bloom rapped on her brother's door, her voice all sing-song and innocent.
She did so, and gazed imploringly up at the red stallion. "Did ya get mah tickets, big bro?"
She batted her eyelashes pleadingly, but Big Mac shook his head.
"Nnnope. Applejack told me all about your suspension. You ain't going to that concert after you pulled a stunt like that."
"No can do, Sugarcube."
Apple Bloom pouted, but she had another trick up her sleeve.
"What if Ah gave you somethin' to sweeten' the deal?"
Big Mac narrowed his eyes. "Like what?"
Apple Bloom pulled out something from behind her back. Big Mac gasped.
"The Greatest Collection Of Baby Shark Remixes! B-but Applejack told me she donated 'em!"
"Ah managed to save a few for... bargaining purposes," Apple Bloom chuckled. "So, whaddya say?"
Big Mac gulped. Apple Bloom was a solid fanfilly, and solid fanfillies truly knew how to manipulate other fanfillies.
He only hoped it wasn't too late for her.