Dude, We're Ponies
Dawn of a new day
It was a most pleasant early summer day in Ponyville. The Pegasus weather squad had scheduled perfectly clear skies. There was not a breeze of wind, and the great Princess Celestia had seen fit not to bring out the full power of the sun quite yet. Truly, it was a perfectly temperate day in which nopony could find a way to complain about the weather, and as this was a rather usual day of no big events or consequences, the inhabitants of Ponyville went leisurely about their business with their hearts free of worry and their heads filled with sunshine and rainbows.
Just outside of Ponyville, one would find a meadow. Although it was a perfect spot to spend some free time in nature, it was eleven in the morning on a weekday, and as a rule, ponies around this time of the day were busy with work, study, or any other business that did not involve picnics, large open grasslands, or any combination thereof.
In the shade cast by a blossoming apple tree, we find two exceptions to that rule. Two young males, one a pegasus with a green coat, and the other a dark blue unicorn, sleeping soundly in rather unflattering positions, suggesting that they must have been lying there for a while. Just above the not-so-dynamic duo, a small petal decided that its destiny involved more than attracting bugs, and that it would rather see more of the world. It let go of its only hold on any stability in life and floated gently downwards. However, as there was no wind that day, the overly ambitious petal did not cover much distance, and instead landed right on top of the nostrils of one of the sleepers, who awoke with a loud sneeze.
The green stallion slowly opened his eyes, blinked a few times, and then rubbed them with as much vigor as five hours of sleep would allow. He carefully checked his surroundings and let out a soft laugh. “Dude,” he said, without looking at his friend whom he addressed so casually, ”have you been sneaking me some new kind of pot, or something?”
The dark blue stallion grumbled, annoyed as he was at this rude awakening. It had been a long night of fun, games and pretty colours, and to compensate, he had planned a long day of sleep, rest and peace. He resolved not to let his friend get in the way of his plans.
“Same 's always: plain Dutch. Lemme sleep,” he mumbled, as he turned his back on the troublemaker.
“Well, I'm still seeing all kinds of things,” replied the early bird. “Almost like we're in a cartoon, or something.”
The green pony got bored with his peculiar surroundings and turned his gaze towards his friend, hoping to continue the discussion in a more proper manner. Unsure of what he was seeing, however, he rubbed his eyes once more. Taking a closer look, his eyes widened, and a grin appeared on his face. “D-dude, is that you?” he asked, stuttering with a laugh in his throat.
“No, it's the Easter Bunny. Go away,” his dark-blue friend replied, with a remarkable sense of sarcasm for a sleeping person.
“Dude, you look like a pony,” said the green one, determined to not get the hint, as annoying his friend was one of his favourite hobbies.
“You and your ponies all the time.” The blue stallion was already wide awake by then, but a stubborn sense of pride held his eyes tightly shut. “It's a good show, alright? I'm as much of a fan as you are. But can you please get something else on your mind for three seconds?”
The green pony was having far too much fun to honour that request, so he pressed on. “No, dude, you really look like a pony. You even got the horn, and all that!” To make a stronger argument, the disturber of the peace tried to gently touch the projection on the forehead of his friend. As his coordination wasn't exactly in top shape, however, he was a little rougher than intended.
The unicorn let out a cry of pain, and sprung up in order to give the perpetrator a piece of his mind. “Hey, what do you think you are doi-” The offended party abruptly stopped his tirade as he looked at his nemesis. He recognised the slightly sleepy grin, and the eyes glowing with mischief, though they seemed somewhat larger than he remembered. He had seen those before, in rather similar circumstances. What he did not recognise, however, was the face sporting these features. He saw a big, round face with a green coat and slightly protruding snout. He looked over the rest of the body and, after extensively searching his memory banks, he finally managed to come to a conclusion and identify the creature sitting in front of him.
“Dude, you're a pony.”
“No, dude, you got that wrong. You are a pony.”
“No, I mean, really, you are a pony!” As the blue one did not think this was the right time and place for a comedy sketch, he grabbed onto the leg of his friend, and held it in front of his face. While this technique proved adequate for making a point, it had the unfortunate side-effect of holding his own hand in front of his own face. Or rather, the place where there should have been a hand.
The two let go of each other and stared at their two hooves that had replaced the hands they enjoyed having so much (they were especially fond of their thumbs and index fingers). After getting bored with that, they explored the rest of their bodies, from their mane to their tails. Despite the confusion, the green stallion looked into the blue one's eyes, and gave the one and only correct answer to their currently most pressing question:
“Dude, we're ponies.”
Complete silence fell over the two. It was that special kind of silence that lasts only two seconds and one may only observe when someone has been faced with the completely unexpected. While not a sound was heard, their faces yelled the one question that a person typically ponders during such a moment: "How would a reasonable person react to this?"
Our heroes simultaneously came to the conclusion that a reasonable person, faced with their current situation, would scream like a girl and flail their limbs in blind panic. As they fancied themselves to be reasonable persons (like most humans), they enthusiastically followed this course of action. The ritual continued for a short while, and as the solution did not magically fall out of the sky, the unicorn got fed up and tried to experiment with a different approach.
“Knock it off!” he shouted, and swung his fist (or actually his hoof, but he was not quite comfortable enough with the idea to think of it like that) at the face of his fellow screamer. As the two collided with a sickening noise, there was silence once more. The technique had proven most successful as the hitter had managed to get rid of excess stress and aggression, allowing his nerves to calm down and the hittee had become too preoccupied with a fresh headache to care about whatever it was that had gotten on his nerves in the first place.
“Thanks, dude. I needed that,” said the victim as he rubbed his sore cheek.
“Yeah, so did I. Now, what the heck is going on here?”
The pegasus shrugged. “Well, we're ponies.”
“Thank you, Captain Obvious! And while you're at it, why don't you point out that we are sitting under a tree, on top of grass, and that we are breathing air produced by said flora?” the dark-blue pony seethed.
“Sheesh! Easy on the sarcasm, dude. I'm just as confused as you are! There's no need to take it out on me.”
The blue stallion let out a sigh and lowered his head. “You're right, I'm sorry. But this is just too weird. What are we supposed to-”
“Hi!” a high-pitched voice sounded.
The blue stallion turned around to face the source of this new voice that saw fit to form such a cheerful greeting. He was expecting to see a whole face, but all he saw were two huge, blue eyes staring into his. He instinctively backed away, but the eyes immediately closed the distance, robbing him of a chance to properly see his new conversational partner. The voice spoke again.
“I'm Pinkie Pie. I heard screaming, so I thought there was something fun going on so I came running, and now I found you two! Are you new to Ponyville? You must be new to Ponyville 'cause I never saw you two before and I know every pony in Ponyville. What are your names? Where are you from? Are you going to stay here forever?”
The voice spoke an awful lot. The dark-blue stallion tried to answer the barrage of questions to the best of his abilities.
“Erm, yeah, we, erm....”
He wasn't a particularly smooth talker. As he was struggling for words, he suddenly found himself struggling to keep his balance as well, as his green friend shoved him out of the way and started talking himself.
“Good day, fair lady,” he said with a most charming smile. “Please forgive my friend; I believe you trapped his tongue with those mesmerising eyes of yours. Allow us to introduce ourselves: my name is Lucky Chance, or just Chance for short, and this is Midnight Watch, or just Midnight. We are travellers on a never-ending search for wealth and opportunity. It is quite likely that we will make Ponyville our home for the time being, so I do hope that we will be getting along well.”
Pinkie Pie gave Chance a puzzled look, and then giggled. “You're a funny one, aren't you? But you still haven't told me where you came from.”
Chance had to think about that one, but realised that thinking too long would probably damage his chances of a positive first impression.
“East,” he said, pointing with his left hoof in a random direction.
“Far, far east,” said Midnight, who felt that he should at least attempt to back up his friend, and pointed in the same direction.
Pinkie looked with a raised eyebrow in the direction they were pointing. “You're pointing north-west,” she noted.
“Yes, indeed,” said Chance, showing a few cracks in his calm face. “And north-west from here, you will find a place known as Faarfaareast.” Knowing that this was a terrible bluff, he instinctively made a throwing motion with his right hoof, hoping that the imaginary die would show mercy.
Luckily, they were dealing with a scatter-brain.
“Oooooh, I never heard of that place before. It must be really far. Could you tell me more about it? Do you want me to show you around Ponyville? I'll be walking around the town anyway, as Mr. and Ms. Cake are working on something really difficult, so they asked me to patrol the city to make sure nothing would happen that could distract them,” she rambled, jumping up and down with her notorious energy.
Letting out an unnoticeable sigh of relief, Chance answered with as much tiredness as he could fit into his usual speech pattern. “It would be an honour, and we shall gladly take you up on that offer at a later date, but we have travelled all night long, and we were hoping for some peace and quiet to recover from the journey,” Chance said, as Midnight, dutifully fulfilling his current role as second fiddle, showed off a mighty yawn.
Pinkie's eyes grew larger, and then gave them a knowing look. “Oh, you're one of those kind of ponies. Don't worry! Pinkie Pie will no longer disturb you! See you around Ponyville!”
And with those words, she bounced away. Midnight and Chance sighed with relief, having bought more time to think about their current predicament without distractions.
“Dude, I didn't know you were into that sort of thing,” said Midnight once Pinkie left their sight.
“What sort of thing?”
“You were flirting with Pinkie Pie, a pony.”
“I wasn't flirting!”
“'Fair lady'? 'Mesmerising eyes'?”
“Okay, maybe a little. I sort of panicked and shifted into Remus-mode.”
"Remus-mode?" Midnight repeated with a raised eyebrow.
"Yeah, you know, Remus d'Aliante, my D&D bard, who'd go on epic adventures to kill monsters and take their stuff."
"Yes, I know. And I also know he's a womaniser."
"Is not! He just isn't above petty flattery to put people in a good mood."
"Yes, and that is called flirting in day-to-day life."
“Look, no need to knock the method. The result is that I managed to get rid of her without making us look suspicious,” Chance continued.
“Now that I think about it, did we even want to get rid of her? Maybe she knew something!” exclaimed Midnight, still rather sour over the fact that his usually socially challenged friend had just completely blown him out of the water in a conversation with a female.
“It's Pinkie Pie. She doesn't know anything.”
“Point. Now from which hole did you pull those ridiculous names?”
“Dude, I'm a nerd. I daydream crazy scenarios like this almost daily. I got scenarios for zombie invasions, Ragnarok or if you get turned into a vampire! Of course I got a scenario for what if we turned into ponies, and it involves us using those names so we wouldn't stand out too much.”
One might think that this is rather typical nerd-talk, as nerds gather round and compare who is the biggest nerd in much the same way middle-aged men compare how big that fish that they caught-and-released last week was. In this case, however, the claim was quite accurate. The vampire-scenario, for example, would have Chance taking a bit of skin from his friend and exposing it to sunlight. If it burns to ashes, he would try his best to keep Midnight's bloodlust under control so his friend could live a fulfilling unlife. However, if the skin sample suddenly started to sparkle, Chance would kill Midnight using whatever means necessary, chop the body into pieces, and burn each piece individually in different locations. He knew his friend would have wanted it that way.
Midnight's eyes glowed with hope. “Are you saying that you actually have a plan for a thing like this?”
Chance looked away guiltily. “Well, the scenario I had in mind was a bit different. For starters, we would appear with a big explosion inside the local library, where Twilight Sparkle would apologise for messing up some sort of spell, and take full responsibility for getting us back home. While she worked on that, we'd pretty much have a bit of a vacation, and once she found a way to get us back, we'd share all sorts of information on this universe's canon with our fellow fans on the internet, and live the rest of our lives as geek gods.”
Midnight gave his friend a disdainful look. “Well, that sure is a lot easier than what we are dealing with now, eh?”
“I know! It was just a daydream, alright? But the core of the plan still stands: we need an expert on anything magical, and I'd say the local prodigy is our best bet.”
Midnight gave this plan some thought. “You think she'll believe us?”
“Well, she always seemed the reasonable and not particularly distrusting type to me. Assuming that we'd be able to catch her alone, and explain truthfully what our problem is without acting like complete jackasses, then she'd at least understand that we need help.”
“Then I sure hope that help won't involve straitjackets, but I guess it's as good a plan as any. Let's go.”
Midnight stood up and tried to walk away, but rather than moving forward at the steady pace he had in mind, he fell backwards while frantically flailing his front legs in a futile effort to keep his balance.
Chance turned his face away to hide how much this event amused him. “I think we are supposed to be using four legs now,” he said, and stood up on all fours, hoping for another chance to show up his friendly rival, which failed rather spectacularly as his legs wobbled under his unfamiliar body weight, and he fell flat on his nose.
With both their prides having taken a heavy hit, they looked at each other, silently agreeing that they would never speak of this again.
“I think that we'd better practice pony-mobility before we go make complete fools out of ourselves in front of the whole town,” Chance suggested.
“Good plan,” Midnight agreed, when suddenly, some other questions popped into his mind. “Wait a second, what did Pinkie mean by 'those kind of ponies'?”
“Either she meant 'ponies that like occasional peace and quiet and need to be left alone', or we got ourselves an embarrassing misunderstanding to clear up later.”
Realising what Chance was getting at, Midnight buried his face in his hoof. “This world hates us as much as our own world does, eh?”
“Splendid.” Midnight sighed. “This is going to be a long day.”
End of chapter 1
(The author is not a native English speaker, but does have a pretty awesome proofreader)