Fluttershy Gets Replaced By A Sherman Tank

by Estee

I Am So Sorry

Fluttershy was pacing back and forth in front of her cottage. It was a mere three hours before the Bearers were supposed to leave Ponyville, taking on the latest mission which any Princess could have wrapped up themselves within, say, twelve seconds, but simply couldn't be bothered to do so for reasons you were never supposed to ask about because it was the Princesses and so nopony ever asked, at least not twice. And she was frantic and nervous and scared and worried and all other sorts of things which would mean still more uses of conjunctions in a single pointless run-on sentence because, you know, Fluttershy. Also, she was pacing due to all of the above and it was pacing instead of flying in a circle because we're still with Fluttershy. Seriously, you have to learn to pay attention when you're reading this sort of stuff. Just try to keep up.

So anyway, here we are with Fluttershy and it's three hours before the Bearers need to go on a mission. (Thought we'd better recap that for you.)

There were numerous animals staring at her as she steadily worked her own mini-groove into the dirt. Several of them were waiting for her to stop so they could claim it as their own personal territory. From many yards away, fish glanced up from the stream and contemplated the glory from of conquering another portion of the loathed land if they could just splash a whole lot of water over that far with total accuracy and then reach it without suffocating, which always seemed to be a minor hitch in most of the Grand Piscine General's plans, ones which dozens of loyal soldiers had perished during their attempts to never quite prove that if a fish simply wanted to badly enough, the air itself would bow to their will and submit to breathing. This was something the General himself strangely refused to field-test on his own, and nofish asked him why, at least not twice. But that's another story entirely and if you're very lucky, no one will ever tell it.

Where were we?

Oh, right. Fluttershy was pacing. A lot. And right on cue, because something has to get this story moving and it's clearly not going to be the author, Twilight Sparkle came galloping up the road.

"Fluttershy, are you ready to go?" the unicorn, who must be described as such immediately just to see how many readers it annoys, inquired. (Incidentally, she was lavender.) "Sure, you might think we've still got three hours before departure time, but my checklist says this is the point when I'm supposed to harass you in some seemingly random fashion just to make sure you're living up to a standard of punctuality which can normally only be found in the better mental institutions, which I'm extremely familiar with and don't ask why. I need to make sure the ponies are running on time! And of course since we're about to face death and doom and destruction and Discord and lots more things requiring excessive conjunctions, I thought you might be hiding somewhere and I'd need extra time to find you, as you're a loveable coward whom I totally have never had the single most minor fantasy about and I am going to stop this sentence right here." Which she did, staring at Fluttershy with bright, expectant eyes where the state of the pupils in no way indicated a lurking nervous breakdown looking for a place to happen, at least no more so than usual.

Fluttershy, perhaps aware on some level that this was not originally meant to be a ten thousand word story, did her part by weakly saying "...I can't go."

Twilight glanced at her list and proudly stated "Two hours and fifty-nine minutes before departure: Fluttershy says she can't go! Right on schedule! Do you know how cute you are when you're totally predictable, orderly, and punctual? I could just lock you in my basement and do all sorts of experiments on you which the Princess would never learn about! So -- why can't you go?" She finished the sentence with her first blink of the last ten minutes. (Yes, we weren't watching her for that much time. Have a little trust.)

"...I can't find anypony to fill in for me. I thought I could get Snowflake, but he's stuck in Canterlot... something about somepony misfiling an Official Change Of Name form and he's not going to live under something alliterative, especially when he's not sure ponies even have biceps, really... And nopony else wants to work here, not after what Angel Bunny did the last time and the time before that and the time before that..."

Twilight looked confused, which made her seem briefly less psychotic. "I thought all the charges were dropped."

"...yes, but now the Guards are looking into new ones for witness intimidation..."

"Oh, they're just being silly," Twilight sniffed and dismissed at the same time, because when it came to multitasking, she was just that good. "Ponies are found hanging off things all the time, especially around this continuity."

"...this is happening in local continuity?"

"No, but there's this little voice in my head which told me to say that and since it seemed so much more insistent than all the other little voices which the Princess told me not to pay attention to, I thought I'd give it a minute. So you really can't find anypony to fill in?"

"No... and I can't leave my friends here all by themselves, or they might... you know... stampede... or get into the garden... or start eating each other again... or, you know, everypony else..."

Twilight paused, flipped over all fifty-nine feet of the checklist, and jotted down an idea for a really great grimdark fic which she was definitely going to get around to right after she finished the one where she got to sleep with the entire town, all at the same time, which would include sleeping with herself. Honestly, how nopony had ever seen the erotic uses for mirror pools before this, she would never know. "But we need you! We can't make the Rainbow Of Totally Not Death without you! How stupid would a rainbow look if it only had five colors?"

"...don't rainbows have seven colors?"

"Indigo doesn't count! You so have to come! It's mandatory! It's not a Bearer mission without six ponies there and it's not as if that wild pollen blowing out of the Everfree is going to stop causing allergy attacks all by itself! Pollen must be regulated! Random movements of tiny particles shall be predetermined! My quota of exclamation marks per month must be met!"

"...but if nopony can watch them..."

"Oh, and there's this rumor of carnivorous pianos. But that's really someone else's story..."

Fluttershy waited it out, which is the same thing the readers are doing during this sentence. Character empathy, y'know.

Twilight's forehooves made a snapping noise, which is a really impressive achievement when you think about it, and thankfully nopony did. "I've got it! I know just what to do! I always know just what to do at some point, and maybe that's usually in the last two minutes, but I've really grown as a character! I'll be back in a little while! You just wait here through the scene break hyphens!" She galloped away.

And so Fluttershy waited patiently while staring down at the scene break hyphens because Twilight had told her to and the stupid writer hadn't figured out how to use a formal HTML break code yet.


Fluttershy had counted the scene break hyphens several times. There were twenty-seven of them, which was significantly less than she was usually forced to put up with. Apparently the writer was also too rushed with getting through this ridiculous story idea to cut and paste anything longer. But counting them was pretty much all these was to do between scenes anyway, unless you counted for all the other things she liked to do off-camera, most of which would require Angel Bunny to dispose of surviving witnesses, and how confusing is it to have 'counting' this many times in one sentence, anyway?

Fortunately, that was when Twilight came back, because the story was counting on her to do so.

"Got it!" Twilight said, her field surrounding a huge metal object which trailed at some distance behind her, the range of which was not being measured in pony body lengths because let's face it, much like this annoying reliance on the word 'field', it'll never catch on. And the metal object was there because did you happen to see the title of the story when you came in?

"...Twilight... what is that?" Fluttershy asked, actually managing to justify her overused local trademark ellipses for once.

"It's your new substitute!" Twilight proudly declared while her pupils performed dilation tricks usually reserved for black holes. "It can do everything you do! It'll supervise your animals! It'll deal with pet sickness! When customers show up and refuse to pay their bills on time, it won't be able to say anything either! I'm pretty sure it can even Stare! And much like everypony who's ever been introduced, someone will be able to rewrite it as a serial killer when nopony's looking! It's perfect!"

"...but... it's a Sherman tank."

And it was. Because that was part of the story's title, and Fluttershy, who had been through this sort of crackfic thing far too often, had been sure to pay attention when she came in, which probably put her ahead of whatever readership percentage you'd find most personally insulting.

Twilight was surprised, along with being somewhat offended because knowing all about the most obscure stuff ever, especially when nopony had any real way of being informed at all, was kind of her thing. "How did you know that?"

Fluttershy pointed up at the title space.

"Oh. But do you know anything else about Sherman tanks?" The tiny pupils would have gleamed if their current density hadn't prevented light from escaping their gravitational field.

"...just the name... and that it really doesn't look like something which could take over for me..."

But it was too late. Twilight had been told that a pony didn't know something, and so the one hundred and fifty-eight foot checklist was unfurled. The unicorn (in case you forgot what she was during the time passage, because this is a lot longer than you were figuring on, isn't it?) began to read off a precisely-ordered set of facts, ones concerning the Second World War and European military movements, historical comparisons with Panzer units, a bit about the Afrika Corps, and even found time to diverge into a brief biography of William Tecumseh Sherman which, unlike the author, she had in no way pulled off Wikipedia five minutes before leaving the tree. The lecture went on in its inimitable fashion for enough time to allow fifteen commercial breaks and the postponement of two new episodes, concluding with the traditional administration of CPR to all listening parties, which really didn't do much for the fish.

"...but how is it supposed to substitute for me?" a weak Fluttershy protested with the first bits of oxygen her brain had recognized in nearly four minutes.

"It doesn't matter!"

"...why not?"

"Because I deliberately made the lecture so long that we have to leave in two minutes, so now there's no time for you to find anypony else! I am The Pony Of Plans! Can you imagine if I ever turned all this intellect and strategy to the cause of -- evil?"

"...yes. But Twilight... how is anypony supposed to know the Sherman tank is my substitute?"

Twilight frowned. "You know, everypony else in this town does seem to be exactly as stupid as the plot requires. Maybe I'd better make it obvious." She utilized one of the one billion, seven hundred and eighty million spells (by actual count) which the fanfic writers had given her over the years, none of which did anything with pollen, and solved Fluttershy's last remaining issue on the spot.

The Sherman tank now had a sign hung over the end of the barrel, which read I AM THE NEW FLUTTERSHY.

"See?" Twilight beamed, incidentally pulling all the chickens closer with the sheer intensity of her total sanity. "Problem fixed!"

And Fluttershy said "...that'll do," because the plot was telling her to and frankly, we've used up way too much time setting this up already.

The ponies ran off to their mission. The tank rested on the soil in front of the cottage, being a tank.

Twenty-seven codeless hyphens worth of time had passed, which is about as much time as you want it to be without going into early afternoon because the tank was dropped off pretty early in the morning. No one mentioned that earlier? Too bad.

The tank continued to rest in front of the cottage. It was green. It was metal. It was a classic. It was the sort of thing people park in front of their VFW headquarters because, you know, Christmas trees are once a year, but you just try telling someone they've got to take down their tank.

It looked somewhat haunted, which was just silly. Haunted tank. Heh. Yeah, right. Like anyone's ever gonna get a story out of that.

Several of the animals had approached it. This had required the deaths of five fish, which were written off as scouting casualties that were in no way the fault of the General, just like all the other deaths. The slightly more air-breathing residents of the cottage had investigated via sniffing, tasting and, because they were animals and certain things just had to be done, urinating on it. The tank had not scolded them for any part of that, which put it ahead of Fluttershy and so they now loved it more than they had ever loved her, and would continue to do so until their memories ran out fifteen seconds after it was taken away. But until then, it was going to be really sincere love, especially since pretty much all of them had forgotten she existed twelve seconds after departure. (She just wasn't as memorable as the tank.)

A particularly stupid teenage dachshund had decided the tank was a female and he was in love with it. However, since this story is going to be humming along at a Teen rating, what he did with this completely rational canine logic leap will pretty much have to stop right here. But if you really want to, you can post in the Comments section and someone will probably tell you where he found the nicotine for after.

Now a tank just sitting in front of the cottage all day is going to be a little too calm for a proper crackfic, so clearly something needs to happen here. Now let's see... what could that be? Certainly don't want to use Angel Bunny just yet, do we? That's really the sort of thing which should be reserved for later in the story. So for now, let's get another pony in here. And since the Bearers are all off fighting the dangers associated with drifting pollen motes (but not pianos because that's being left for someone else and the Comments section will be furious enough), it can't be any of them. Also, believe it or not, despite all prior evidence, the writer is not stupid enough to give the Cutie Mark Crusaders a tank. This may be crackfic, but there are limits, or so you might think because we're probably got a few of those left to horribly violate. But Scootaloo + Tank = Null. Mercy.

So who can we bring in? Well, clearly it has to be a pony who can act in any idiotic way the story requires without anyone questioning it, and that's after everything which happened up until this point. Say, somepony without a whole lot of characterization. Just-About-Name-Only Victim #1. Oh, and he has to be really stupid in this along with turning into a major jerk, because the story says so.

Any objections to Caramel?

Too late!

So here comes Caramel up the path, and he was sniffing the air because it let us change tenses in the middle of a sentence, which is truly the sign of better literature everywhere. Also, if you've never smelled a Sherman tank after numerous animals have urinated on it and a particularly idiotic dachshund (who could normally be called a dashie, but gee, let's not go there with this image) had -- asked it out -- yeah, let's go with that -- then obviously you've never walked in front of your local VFW headquarters. It has a scent all its own which you must inhale to really appreciate. And you will appreciate it. For seven months or until you stick a red-hot poker up each nostril, whichever comes first.

Caramel stopped in front of the tank.

He read the sign. Caramel can so totally read. He read the absolute living Tartarus out of that sign. He could have read it a thousand times in a row and found something new to appreciate each time. Caramel's just that kind of pony. Of course, he didn't understand any of what he read because this story requires him to be incredibly stupid plus a major jerk, so for the sake of the story, he decided the sign meant Fluttershy had been turned into a tank, which didn't bother him at all because plot.

"About this bill you sent me," he angrily said, whipping a piece of paper out from the mysterious place all ponies without saddlebags keep everything. "Do you know how many bits you're charging me? Do you even know how much these bits are worth? Because frankly, it's been confusing me for a long time. It's like being a tenth-bit short is an arrestable offense, and I don't even know why I said that! But just because the real vet in town whom the author named and that's never going to catch on either would charge me three times this rate, that's no reason for me to see your bill as reasonable and pay promptly! In fact, for purposes of this story, I am currently dating Berry Punch by taking her to bars every other night, which means I really don't have a lot of bits to spare right now! So since you're Fluttershy and anypony can intimidate you horribly right up until they get Stared at, which is something we all seem to forget about until it's too late, I am here to intimidate you horribly! You will take some of the costs off this bill! You will go into bankruptcy and have to leave town, so when my ferret gets sick again -- for purposes of this story, I so have a ferret -- and doesn't get better, it'll be all your fault! And I will declare all this in the name of getting somepony drunk enough night after night to think I'm worth hanging around, because I'm truly stupid, a major jerk, and like to speak in ridiculously long paragraphs!"

The tank rested on the soil in front of the cottage, being a tank, because it knew that not only was repeating sentences from earlier a dramatic literary trick, but using cut-and-paste was just so much easier than having to think of an original way to redescribe something. It did not Stare at Caramel, because it was a tank. It also didn't reorient its barrel so that it would be seeming to look at him with a single dark eye, because this was a Sherman and aiming towards any real degree of low wasn't necessarily in the design plans, not that the author could really be bothered to read that deeply into the Wikipedia article because this is a three-hour crackfic which doesn't seem to mandate any real research, plus have you seen that thing? It goes on forever, much like the previous paragraph! But for all intents and purposes, let's just say Caramel was standing in a place where it felt as if it was looking at him already. Because that would be part of the stupid thing to do and let's face it, this story needs all the help it can get.

"I'm not going to pay this whole thing!" Caramel insisted, staring into the dark hollow as best he could, which wasn't very.

The tank said nothing.

"I refuse to hand over bits when I know you don't have the guts to take me to court for them either! Plus if anything had happened to my ferret, I could have adopted a new one from you for free, which logically means the medical treatment also should have been free!"

The tank maintained a certain dignified silence.

"I didn't even vote for Lunacare!"

The tank, realizing that the Comments section had just been opened up to a political war for the sake of what was frankly just about the weakest imaginable one-liner, fervently wished it was in another story entirely.

Caramel kept staring at the tank.

The tank didn't blink. Because it was a tank. They do that. Or, you know, not.

There was a long pause, one which a much better writer would have used to build some degree of drama, but which this hack used for losing on Level 168 of Candy Crush Saga another five times.

Stupid game.

Caramel took a tiny breath.

"I'll -- just leave the bits right here, shall I?"

The tank's silence seemed to indicate some degree of approval. Or perhaps just a very large degree of being a tank.

Caramel extracted bits from the same place the bill had emerged from, only with decidedly more grunting. He delicately placed them in front of the tank, leaving no teeth marks or scratches on the coins because that's just how Equestrian money works and if you haven't questioned that up until this point, then don't you think you're picking a really bad place to start? And then he backed away from the cottage, keeping an eye on the tank the whole time, just in case.

The tank rested on the soil in front of the cottage, being a copy-pasted sentence about a tank. And also a tank.

Gosh, that's meta.


There were twenty-eight hyphens this time, just in case anyone was bothering to count again.

The tank rested -- okay, that's about enough of that, don't you think? But it hadn't moved, because no one was operating it. The metal was heating up rather nicely, since this happened to be summer and since no one bothered to bring up the time of day at an appropriate juncture, we can just drop a section of year in whenever we want to, even if the pollen might have been more suited to spring. It's Equestria. The clouds have to be moved by hoof and you're going to ask questions about allergy season?

Now, you may think a tank sitting around in front of the cottage, being mistaken for Fluttershy by ponies who are exactly as stupid as the story requires them to be, is a situation rife with comic potential. And you're probably right. However, your skills also happen to be superior to that of the writer who's working with this idea, so while you could do so many more things with it, none of them are going to happen here because we're going to kind of skim over a few hours in order to get that much closer to what's being falsely seen as the good parts. also known as 'picking a delusion which will wrap up this writing in three hours'. Bear with it. Let's face it: if you're still reading at this point, you're not in much of a position to judge.

So with that in mind, here's a few highlights from the day.

Big Macintosh, very well aware that a good part of the fandom which considers both he and Fluttershy to be A. heterosexual B. attracted to each other and C. in desperate need of Getting It Started Already, picked this of all days to finally work up the courage and trot to the cottage to ask the object of his 2:00 a.m. nightly ventures into the Mature rating out on a date. Which meant he asked out a tank, at least after he finished clearing the defensive dachshund away. Now, in a different story, he would have recognized that the tank was there because Twilight was insane and decided to come back another day. In an extremely different story, we would have gone into Hot Pony On Tank Action, which at this point under summer sun would have resulted in a few really awkward burns. (There will probably be fanart of this by lunchtime tomorrow. Therefore, no one should plan on eating lunch ever again.) And in far too many stories, there would have been a funeral because seriously, have you seen this site? The only thing more common than serial killer ponies are suicidal ones. Honestly, if not for the dozens of duplicate background citizens, the population of Ponyville would have hit zero halfway through the third episode. But in this particular whatever-this-is-supposed to be, he simply decided that Fluttershy was clearly feeling far too skittish to accept his proposal at that time, what with having recently been turned into a tank and not understanding that he still found her beautiful. And so he went back to the Acres, deciding to try again another day after she'd adjusted to the change a little more, and found the family farm, barn, and crop destroyed by Apple Bloom's Crusading activities. Again.

(Which ultimately inspired him to become a suicidal serial killer, but that's another story.)

Three more very stupid ponies trotted over from town to dispute their bills. Which three? Which three would you like? But they were stupid. Really and truly stupid. As stupid as pretty much everything in this story, because do you really think this threadbare excuse for a plot is going to work any other way?

(Somewhere the writer couldn't be bothered to look, Rarity freaked out because there was yellow pollen in her mane and yellow in purple was just so overdone, so since this was Rarity, a total nervous breakdown complete with mindless headlong gallop was clearly justified. The others chased her through another patch of flowers which turned them all into alicorns for exactly five seconds, thus fulfilling the fanfic quota for turning everypony into an alicorn. Except for Spike, because they had all forgotten about him again. And they never spoke of it once they emerged, which might have been seen by lesser minds as a pity because those five seconds cleared up every single mystery of the series. But really, we're just here for the tank, so forget it.)

Several small animals sprinted out of the Everfree to take shelter at Fluttershy's cottage, with a number of larger ones chasing them. The bigger creatures found themselves facing, instead of a retired supermodel who fed her bears on paparazzi, a tank. So in that sense, the replacement was exactly as effective as Fluttershy and only fainted one-tenth as much. And it could explain those two times, really it could. Or would have if it wasn't a tank, but trust the writer, it made perfect sense in the context which no one can be bothered to reveal.

However, there were certain things the tank could not do. It could spread death and destruction rather well, at least if anyone was at the controls. It could shield anypony within from bullets, not that anypony was certain that bullets existed and frankly, it was enough of a surprise to have Rainbow know what a tank was. (If only she was here right now, it would have solved everything. Or she could have just taken a nice warm nap.) And when it came to having Christmas lights strung all over it, the tank was the obsolete military tech grand champion of all times, having handily beaten the Civil War Cannon by sixteen complicated stringing arrangements to two.

But it could not comfort the animals, other than by giving them a place to urinate and mark territory on, which was an area where Fluttershy seemed oddly reluctant to accept their love.

It could not treat their illnesses, which happily didn't matter because nopony brought any sick companions with them on that day and the cottage was completely free of all sickness, if you overlook suicidally fanatic brook trout. Yes, that's overly convenient. Your point?

And most of all, it could not feed them. The cottage's residents and visitors were used to being fed. They happened to like it. They loved getting free food as much as they loved Fluttershy, or would have if they hadn't completely forgotten about her because those seconds were long gone. Let's face it: they primarily loved her because they had taken one look at her and, as a group, realized that this was a sucker they could sponge off forever with hunt and gather being placed by bowl or trough? One faked purr equals one free meal: repeat and ride until the entire Everfree was lining up for dinner. They would have loved anypony who was stupid enough to hold up their eternal end of that deal, at least until the food ran out, and then they would have looked for other sources because hello: animals.

You may be wondering if any of them were starting to eat each other at this point. For the comfort of whatever's left of your sanity after getting this far, let's say no. You can believe that if you try, can't you? No? Then try harder.

But we still haven't seen a certain cottage resident yet, and it's probably about time we brought him in because it's the only way to reach what the writer thinks will be the next good part and wow, is that ever wrong. Still... cue the rabbit.

Angel Bunny hopped out of the cottage.

He was hungry. Nopony had fed him. Oh, he could get food for himself, for he was a rabbit. Food was all around him. But that wasn't the point. Eating grass required effort. Raiding the garden meant he would have had to do something for himself. Angel's purpose in life was to make Fluttershy into an effective tool of the animal world, and the tool in question was a fork. There had to be salads. There had to be cherries. And if there wasn't, then there had to be abusive behavior which had somehow gotten past every censor the Hub had and really, as far as he was concerned, every last bit of it had been justified right up until the moment she'd opened the cookbook to the section on rabbit stew and asked if he had any ideas regarding the preparation of the entree'. So that sort of thing didn't happen any more, at least not that you know about.

Angel had not been fed, and that meant he was angry.

He hopped up to the tank. He read the sign. (Right: he read the sign. You've gotten this far and that's the part you've decided to have trouble with?) And unlike everypony who had approached the cottage that day, most of whom just weren't worth writing about, he realized that this was not actually Fluttershy. And since the tank was not a pegasus sucker who thought she was trading meals for actual emotional support, it would not be feeding him any time soon. Or ever.

It was, however, a tank.

Angel hopped closer. He bounded straight up using one of those amazing pure vertical leaps rabbits generally pull off when no one's looking: that put him above the treads. He repeated the trick twice more, until he found himself on the gunbarrel. Paws wrapped around the hot metal, and he inched out along its length. (There may be fanart of that later. Don't eat breakfast either.) Eventually, he reached the end.

And then he wriggled himself into the hollow.

Several minutes passed, but none of them warranted strings of hyphens.

The tank, which was fully gassed up and ready to go, started up. The barrel turned. The treads began to shift. And it headed for Ponyville, intent on finding somepony who could feed the cottage residents and smacking them around a little until they agreed to do just that for the rest of what would otherwise be their very short lives.

No, no one's asking you to believe Angel Bunny can operate a tank all by himself.

Two chipmunks and a pair of mice followed him in.

Also a fly.

I don't know why they invited a fly.

I guess Ponyville will die.

Except that it's not that kind of story. Also, the writer really doesn't feel like describing the action as a tank rumbles through a surprisingly-helpless Ponyville, spreading vast amounts of destruction which will be completely repaired by the next story while somehow managing not to kill, seriously injure, or even moderately dirty a single citizen. So we're just going to skip over it entirely, except to note that it was ultimately defeated by a truly heroic measure executed by Spike at great personal risk, which nopony noticed, cared about, mentioned, or ever remembered again, as usual.

(Hey, this thing has to have some grounding in reality.)

And then the writer decided to switch into one of those heavy-dialogue scenes which seem to turn up every so often, mostly to save time because this thing's taken two hours and forty-five minutes of writing already.


Princess Celestia looked at Twilight Sparkle, contemplating whether her royal presence in this story was truly necessary or simply designed to get a few more page views. Also, the truly inept use of hyphens was really annoying her. Fortunately, she had somepony to take it out on.

"Twilight, we have had this discussion in the past."

"I know."

"It was one thing when you replaced your teachers with rocks."

"They listened better! They didn't ask as many stupid questions about why I wanted samples of their major organs! Nopony even noticed the difference for two years!"

"And when you subsequently switched out your first date for a body pillow and a copy of Truly Awesome Crack Pairings from history, I held my tongue."

"...I still totally say Tom and Rarity are a couple..."

"But when I came into Luna's bedroom to find her mattress occupied by a hunk of green cheese, I felt I had a certain duty. To speak with you. To offer discipline. To cancel your Fleemco account."

"It's not my fault."


"No! It's not! For all the times we saw her in the rest of the first season, a hunk of green cheese could have done her job anyway! And besides, if ponies weren't supposed to open new accounts under false identities, then computer viruses shouldn't steal personal information! It's all the programmer's fault!"

"Oh, good. We have computers and tanks. I was wondering. So... I simply called them and asked who had ordered a Sherman tank recently. They provided the information. And do you know what else they gave me, after I used certain measures which may or may not be legal under my rule and nopony should ever ask about twice?"


"They told me you had ordered a stamp."

"That wasn't me."

"A stamp which reads Twilight Sparkle Is Always Right."

"That still wasn't me. That was somepony ordering under my false ID. I was robbed. My personal lie was stolen. Somepony is trying to frame me. It's Sombra."

"To be shipped to my throne room in replacement of me."

"It's always Sombra! Or it has to be Sombra eventually! We wouldn't have done all that buildup for that little screen time!"

"I actually feel you might have gotten away with it if you hadn't ordered it in pink."

There was silence, because there usually is. Really, by this point, it's a cliche'.

"...am I going to the Moon?"

"The Moon is too good for you."

"...I'll be good... I swear... the rehab will totally take this time..."

"You have destroyed Ponyville. Again. You have led to a complete shortchanging on action scenes for the last time. And worst of all, you had a story where there were extra alicorns, which nopony needs."

"It was just five seconds..."

"No, Twilight Sparkle. You have finally gone too far. The punishment must be real. It must be something which will break you, in the hopes that any pieces large enough to see might have learned something. And so for your punishment, for the rest of your life, you will --"

"No, please..."

And with the final seconds running out on the composition time, the ridiculously weak final completely wrong idea of a punchline was at last unleashed.

"-- preread and edit Rainbow Dash's fanfics!"

At which point, this very nearly became a story about pony suicide.

But let's face it: justified!


Ponyville was rebuilt yet again. Angel Bunny was disciplined and forgot about it five seconds later. Hyphens were pasted one last time. A megacorp decided not to sue after they realized they couldn't prove the mice and chipmunks were theirs, plus the fly could have just been totally incidental. Twilight's new account was canceled and, aside from the screams which rang out from the library every single night as the (one last time) unicorn discovered everything a certain pegasus had ever written had been done in second-person, life in Ponyville returned to abnormal.

Except that three weeks later, Rainbow Dash was replaced by a Harrier jump-jet. But the writer was told a banning lurked if that was ever posted, so let us never speak of it again.

Besides, that part was Georg's idea.