Crunch Time Supreme

by Darkness Shade

Taco of Terror

Ah, another lovely day in Ponyville: the sun is bright, the weather is warming up with Winter Wrap-Up come and gone, and the ponies are getting back outdoors with the change of seasons. Even the unusual residents of this fair town are doing well for themselves, adapting even more as time passes and they come to enjoy their new home. As the scene shifts to show an elegant but simple looking house residing on the outer parts of Sweet Apple Acres, it's clear that things are moving as always for a certain human and his many mares. The kitchen in particular is quite busy, as a pink pony is working hard on a scrumptious lunch that is no doubt meant for a certain someone.
"That's right Mr. Narrator! I'm making a tasty lunch for our human! Oh, but where are my manners?" Pinkie giggled, working on the food, "How are you this fine day?"
As good as always, Pinkie. Anyday in which I am able to narrate for you and your motley group of ponies and humans is a good one and it seems this day is going to be a great one.
"I'm so glad to hear! I'm even happier when you are happy as well."
Speaking of, what are you cooking?
"Oh just a tasty treat, filled with yummy meat, for my sweet human to eat." Pinkie sung as she began assembling the food, "Tacos! He's working quite hard in the fields with Lyra and AppleJack so I know he'll be super hungry when he shows up!"
Haha, that's true enough. Well then, carry on Pinkie.
"I will Mr. Narrator! Have a great day!"
And so Pinkie continued making her delicious lunch for her human, humming away happily. Panning out from the house, AppleJack, Ryan, and Lyra are clearly seen in the fields bucking and harvesting apples happily. Things seems quite well on this day for Ryan, but what of his brother? What nonsense could that wily half-demon possibly be getting into with his marefriend? After all, considering the hijinx they got into during Hearth's Warming Eve, the sky's the limit when it comes to Darkness Shade and Thunder Fire.

The Bottom of the Plot detective agency was all quiet, the sign showing closed for the day. The two individuals of interest were indeed still here but enjoying a little quality time with one another after another hard day of work....and by that that they spent most of the day sorting and organizing files since it was just another peaceful day in this colorful land of ponies. Although one could be forgiven if they were confused to see only Thunder Fire's mane poking out as she lie on the couch.....yet still heard Dark's voice.
"Mmmmm...yer just so, so, soft and comfy." Dark moaned softly, "And so warm T-Fire. Mmmmm."
Thunder Fire sighed, "Shhh...we're supposed to be napping. You promised if we did this you'd stay quiet so we could relax."
"But T-Fire, don't you like this too?" Dark chuckled before turning over and spreading out on Thunder Fire's stomach, "You know ya like me being all tiny like this."
" comment." Thunder Fire quietly replied, "...and I didn't say stop to the rubs."
Dark smirked before spreading out and scratching her tummy even more, "Oh man, I pones must be made of marshmallows. You're too soft not to be."
Thunder Fire said nothing but blushed, her wings fluttering slightly as Dark worked his hand magic on her tummy. Eventually Dark tired out and curled up over her heart, idly tracing circles in her fur, "I take it my love is content?"
"Must you ask?"
"Well..." Dark smirked, "It is nice to hear."
"Goober." Thunder Fire giggled before closing her eyes, "Yes. It's as nice as when you're full-sized. So...can we nap now?"
"Of course." Dark got settled before shivering a bit, "T-Fire?"
T-Fire opened one eye, "Hmmm? Yes?"
"I'm cold...."
Feeling her laugh, Dark sighed happily as he felt her gently cover him with her hoof, "Ah, perfect. Nighty-night~"
Well, that was a far sweeter scene than was to be expected this morning. Best to quietly exit so as not to disturb their nap or their privacy.
All in all, it seems as if this will be just another peaceful, perfect day in Ponyville and there's nothing wrong with that.
...except that makes a slightly boring story, so it's time to get crazy!

Ryan yawned and stretched, his back cracking loudly, "Ugh. Felt that one. These trees are really growing fast this year. At this rate we'll have a harvest long before Apple-Bucking season."
"Ah figure yer right on that one, Apple Ryder." AppleJack let out a sigh, "And thanks fer assitin' as well, Lyra. Ah know this ain't exactly the kinda thing yer normally doin'."
"Haha, well we are just one big happy group these days after all. So no problem in lending a hoof when ya might need one." Lyra nodded before wiping her forehead, "I can't remember the last time I sweat so much...but things are pretty quiet music-wise right now. No concerts for a while."
AppleJack waggled her eyebrows, "Ya say that...but Ah reckon it's because ya get to spend a little extra time with our human."
" comment."
Ryan snickered, "Yeah, yer blush is enough of one, Heartsy."
As the three of them laughed in the moment, they were unaware of something terrible happening. As it was, the ground began to shake and with that the start of something...marvelous.
"...that was ominous." Lyra frowned, "What do you think that was, Ryan? Ryan?"
"Apple Ryder...?" AppleJack nudged him, though noted he barely budged as he stared off into the distance, "...."
"....our....our house." Ryan fell to his knees, "It''s....what happened to it?"
"Apple Ryder, what in tarnation are ya—oh."
Lyra turned to look where they were and gasped as well, "...why is a large portion of our house missing?"
"Ah...Ah'm not sure. Wait...wasn't Pinks cooking something in there?"
"I think she was." Lyra looked around, "You don't think..."
"I hope not." Ryan began running towards the house, "Pinkie!"
"...Apple Ryder...that was coming from above."
"Oh somepony catch me!" Pinkie screamed as she plummeted back to earth, "I really don't want to have to change my name to Pinkie Splat."
"Ryan, do something!" Lyra shouted, "Catch her!"
"Ah....fine!" Ryan began moving about trying to match her location, "That's it....that's it!"
And as expected, Ryan did catch her...but not in the best way as he got a face full of pink pony posterior before being pounded into the ground by the force of her fall.
"Rysy-wysy: My Hero!" Pinkie giggled before looking about, "Rysy? Where did he go?"
Hearing a mumbled reply, she looked down before giggling some more. Hopping off of him, she helped him up before then giving him a hug, "Already getting your hero's reward, eh? Working on copying your brother's technique, I see."
"Pinks!" Ryan groaned, picking her up and smirking, "You are a handful. What happened anyway? What...what did you cook up?"
"Something bad....also, it headed into town! We have to warn the others!"
Sure enough, Ryan could see a trench of some kind dug in the ground that snaked its way towards Ponyville proper.
"Come on, we've got to assemble the team." Ryan nodded at the others, "Dark should be there with T-Fire so hopefully they'll be okay...and not get into trouble as usual."

"Mmmmm, hmmm?" Thunder Fire yawned, "What a nice nap, I—Dark?"
Thunder Fire gently patted her chest but found he wasn't there anymore, realizing she'd have to be careful if she moved because he could be anywhere she began to shift until she felt something. Said something was about the location of her cutie mark and was pushing into her flank in a rather pleasant manner.
Leaning her head and peaking down the couch, she wasn't very surprised by what she saw, "...Dark? What are you doing?"
Dark smirked and turned to wink at her, "Oh, just getting to the bottom of the plot as always. The story was getting a little slow so I figured I'd get a jump on it."
"Besides..." Dark grinned and pushed on her cutie mark as hard as he could, drawing forth a pleased noise from T-Fire, "You know you like it~"
T-Fire narrowed her eyes, "...just keep going or I'll roll over on you."
" that really a threat?" Dark chuckled but continued his attentions uninterrupted...until he felt a rumble, "T-Fire....was that you?"
Thunder Fire grumbled, opening her closed eyes, "...and just what are you trying to insinuate?"
"Nothing. I was just trying to figure you if you made that noise, or if something outside did. Because it felt big...and rumbly..." Dark nodded before hopping up on to her stomach and walking up to her face, "Come on. As much fun as we're having with this, I can tell something isn't right. So I need yer help casting the counter-spell so I can get back to full-sized here."
"Oh you do?" Thunder Fire giggled, "And just what is my little boyfriend going to do if I don't?"
Dark raised an eyebrow, "I won't kiss you again for a whole week."
" wouldn't! I know you couldn't go that long!"
"What more, I won't get involved in any plot related shenanigans with you for that same time."
"That's...that's just cruel!" Thunder Fire whimpered, "Dang it....always getting one over on me."
"Awww, don't be sad my little fire-cloud." Dark snickered and glomped her muzzle before kissing her, "I only tease you because I wuv you."
Thunder Fire's cross-eyed stare at the bizarre half-demon glomped on her was only matched by her smirk before she stuck out her tongue and licked him thusly.
"Gah! Sneak attack!" Dark moaned before flopping backwards on to her tummy, "Alright, enough sillies...time to get serious....but not too serious."

A few moments later after a little "assistance" with the "antidote", Dark was his proper self once more and quite eager to go find out just what trouble decided to show its ugly head this time. Heading downstairs and opening the door, he went to exit but soon chose otherwise when something very large rumbled by leaving a trail of destruction in its wake.
"Was...was that...."
Thunder Fire glanced at him and nodded, "Yes...I saw that also. A taco."
"A giant taco." Dark corrected, "...I have this terrible suspicion somepony we know might be behind this. Looked like a crunchy taco at that, now that I think on it."
"Well know what that means, right?"
Smirking, Dark gave a nod, "Right! We get to take a bite outta crime...literally!"
Thunder Fire stared at him briefly before face-hoofing, "...I don't even anymore, Darkness. Sometimes I wonder if you have the brain damage."
"Hey now, T-Fire, this is no time for loving words. There's something spicy afoot, after all."
"...only you would take that as me being lovey-dovey. Come on you winged dork, we've got to get a move on."
"Very well! Lettuce go!"
Thunder Fire headbutted Dark in the butt, catapulting him out into the streets, "That's for being so cheesy."
After rubbing his posterior and seeing all was well, he hurried on with Thunder Fire to see what they could do to help the—yet again—Ponyville in peril.
While this was happening, Ryan had met up with the others in his herd and finally made it into town only to be quite confused as to what he was seeing, "Ladies...Ah' Ah seeing things?"
"Whatcha talkin' about, Apple Ryder?"
"I just wanna make sure Ah'm not hallucinating. After all, T-Sparks did say that Ah might have that issue when she began teaching me magic." Ryan continued staring at the odd sight before them, "As Ah recall, it had to do with the fact that Dark and Ah are brothers. Despite me being human and he being half-demon, because we share some basic genetic similarities Ah can still learn's just a bit harder and might have some curious side-effects."
Twilight nodded, "Well, that is what I told you a few months ago but...."
"Yeah, considering y'all haven't said anything against it, Ah'm pretty sure we're looking at a giant taco terrorizing town."
"So then, what do we do?"
"That's easy, partner." Dark chuckled as he walked up, "Figured you'd be here, bro. Another one of your experiments go awry?"
"It's my fault! I was cooking and it went all baked bad on me!" Pinkie sighed, hugging Dark and crying, "I'm sorry!"
"Easy there, Ponk. It's okay. It's just a taco, after all. Let's just eat the darn thing."
Rainbow Dash gave him a look, "Uhm, not all of us eat meat, ya know? Why don't we just do that thing we've been working on and break it to bits?"
"Haha, you mean our team-up technique?" Dark smirked, "Okay Rainbow...let's give it a shot!"

"Uhm, do you guys know what they're talking about?" Twilight looked about confused, "...why are they going so high up?"
"...we might wanna take cover." Ryan remarked, pulling out a hardhat and ducking behind a barrier Pinkie had pulled from wherever it is she pulls things, "They're gonna combine their signature aerial moves."
"Ah reckon this is gonna be one hell of a boom!" AppleJack laughed loudly, "Sock 'em with all ya got Rainbow!"
Having reached their needed height, Dark and Rainbow Dash winked at each other before dive-bombing towards the giant taco slowly plowing through town. Screaming in anticipation, the two of them moved faster and faster before finally the telltale signs began appearing and then...
Ryan watched the blend of both BOOM moves and shed a tear, "It's so...magical."
As they spiraled around and around, the twin trails wrapped around each other before finally they collided head-on with the giant, spicy fiend....but something was amiss.
Pinkie looked around confused, "Where's the kaboom? There was supposed ta be a taco-shattering kaboom! And then tasty treats abound!"
"Dark! No!" Thunder Fire shouted, watching as he and Dashie were sinking into its meaty goodness.
Dark reached out towards her, a grim look on his face, "T-Fire! Don'"
"Forget about me~"
And with that Dark and Rainbow sunk under the meaty surface and all was silence.
"Brother! Curse you, you crunchy abomination!" Ryan growled, "Ladies! Unload with all yer magic! Give it hell!"
At that command, those of his herd that could wield it nodded and unleashed the beast all over its surface. The taco stopped at the attack and paused it's movements as Ryan and the others released what they could muster to do...something to save their town and their loved ones. Eventually they panted and noticed that there was no discernible damage whatsoever to it. In fact, it seemed as if it stopped only to mock them.
"This is madness!" Rarity bemoaned, "What are we supposed to do, darlings?"
"...hey, Ryers?"
"Yeah, Lyrs?"
"Where'd Thunder Fire go?"
Ryan looked about and couldn't see her anywhere near them and began to wonder if she had been eaten up by the taco as well. Seeing a shadow on the ground, he craned his head upwards and saw, "...T-Fire? Is she....she's flying! What?!"
Sure enough, Thunder Fire had somehow overcome her fear of flying but something else seemed different about her. Her eyes were focused, her feathers were primed, and she looked far more serious than she ever had before. As she eyed the troublesome taco, she had but one thought on her mind, "GIVE ME BACK MY DEMON! PASTA FOREVER!"
With that she dove full force towards the taco, which worried Ryan as he wasn't sure what was going on in that crazy pone brain of hers.

" the air crackling around her?"
Wondering what Fluttershy was going on about, the group saw that indeed it seemed like lightning was sparking around her as she gained speed. Eventually there was a loud clap of thunder as she left fire trails in her wake.
"Great Scott!" Ryan gasped at such a reaction, "Ah do believe that our dear friend has done something crazy. We...might wanna move."
As they watched Thunder head straight towards the taco, they wondered if her move was going to have any effect...or if she'd get caught just like the others. She collided with the side of the taco and pierced it's crunchy defense but she did not immediately appear on the other side. Fearing the worst, the others cautiously approached the taco only to see it shaking oddly. And then something burst free form the other side as the taco—somehow—let out a roar of pain.
"Oh God, it's everywhere!" A random pony muttered, the taco meat having sprayed all over as Thunder Fire emerged with Dark and Rainbow in tow.
"Hahaha! Now that's my girl! She's one spicy meatball!" Dark laughed loudly, " did you do that hon?"
Thunder, now aware that the dork she cared about was safe, realized she was flying and dropped the remaining two feet....with Dark and Rainbow underneath her.
"Ow...well, at least I'm out of there." Rainbow furrowed her eyebrows before smacking her mouth, "Ugh...some of it got in my mouth....hmmmm....!"
"Uh, Dashie-kins?" Ryan walked over towards her and titled his head, "Are you okay?"
"...yes! Yes! Just...this taco's kinda tasty."
Twilight looked at AppleJack and shrugged before motioning towards the taco, "Okay, so our friends are safe but...that thing is still there...and it looks really upset."
The taco began to roar even louder before tearing through Ponyville, threatening to level the town and perhaps move on to the next closest city. Dark could only imagine the trouble that would cause, "This is bad...even with T-Fire's little Thunder Crack move damaging it, that taco is still out for blood. Sheesh, too bad Mexico isn't here. He'd totally take this thing out. Hell, I'd even settle for Spain!"
Ryan shook his head, "It's a Hetalia thing, and a terrible one at that. Just ignore him."
"U-uhm, guys? It's heading towards Town Hall..."
As they watched in horror as the taco steamed onwards, there was a strange noise to be heard...and then something pink and fluffy landed in front of the taco, waving her hoof wildly and standing in its way.
"Fluffle! Don't do it!" Ryan and Dark shouted, "No!"
The taco, seemingly curious about this strange pink pony, continued towards her but at a slower pace. Fluffle watched before she looked at it, making 'pffft' noises of various lengths before she lowered her head and waited for the taco's move. The taco seemed poised to attack but at the last moment it stopped....before shaking for some reason. The others prepared for the worst but, amazingly, that didn't happen. Instead, the taco began rumbling before it launched upwards into the air, eventually disappearing as it left the atmosphere and all of their Earth entirely. The group seemed very confused by these actions, until they saw Dark smirking.
"Hmm? Oh. Well what she said was perfect. Pinkie understood, right? I know Ryan should have."
"Well, darling, please tell us what it is that Fluffle said to rid us of this food menace?"
"That's easy, Rarity! She said exactly this: You are not a gun. You are who you choose to be. So choose."

Later that night, Celestia and Luna were relaxing with their desired snacks during a little bit of sister time. Despite detecting some odd disturbance from Ponyville, the fact that nothing had happened led them to believe their dear friends had managed to handle whatever had arisen and, most likely, they would end up with some letter informing them as such. In fact, said letter appeared just as they were having the thought...much to Celestia's dislike.
"Ah-ha! I called the letter's arrival to the tee, dear sister." Luna grinned cheekily, "Your cake for the next week is all mine~"
Celestia narrowed her eyes, annoyed by this turn of events, before she sighed and unfurled the letter, "...very well, Luna. Now then, let us see what our little ponies and humans have to say."

Dear Princess Celery and Moona,

Hi! It's your favorite humans and ponies again, writing about what went down in our sleepy town. Needless to say, it was quite the harrowing event when a giant taco decided to rampage through town.
We nearly lost Darkness and Rainbow Dash, but Thunder Fire conquered her fear of flight to save them both...and learned a new move in the process. The town is mostly undamaged, save for some buildings that luckily were already scheduled for demolishing anyway. So that was a nice break. In the end, one of the many friends we've made here saved the day with a most unorthodox way of doing things.
So to sum up what we've learned today, Princesses, we discovered that friendship—as always—helps conquer any task. That and a well-time and well-placed movie reference from Ryan and Dark's world.


Your faithful—and sexy—student and friends...wait, Dark! Don't add that! Spike, no, don't send it yet—

Celestia and Luna looked at each other after the former had read the letter aloud and weren't quite sure what to make of it. The piece of chocolate hanging from Luna's mouth fell to the ground as she tried to think of something to say. After a few moments, she decided on but one question, "...sister? Given the topic of our friends' letter, I must ask you: hast thou been dabbling with the forbidden dish again?"

With everything all wrapped up nice and tidy once more, our dear heroes returned to what they were doing. As it were, Darkness and Thunder had returned home to rest up after such a traumatic experience. While T-Fire had gone straight to bed, Dark was still feeling a bit antsy and decided to continue reading the Hearts and Hooves day gift he'd received from his little fire-cloud but hadn't been able to read much of since then. Picking up a book entitled Fact or Fiction: Equestrian Myths Throughout Time, he quickly flipped to where his bookmark rested: the section dedicated to Cloudsdale. And the first myth—one that he had heard rumors of since their arrival here—was something he was quite curious about given certain reactions by friends of his...particularly a rainbow-maned pegasus.
"Rainbow Factory: Where Fears and Horrors Come True...?"