“Just look at it, guys,” said Pinkie Pie with pride. “This cake puts even the Marzipan Mascarpone Meringue Madness to shame.”
“Whoa…,” said the twins.
Pinkie walked up to the cake, an accomplished look on her face. “This is a world record for sure.” She looked up and down, taking in every detail of her masterpiece. The cake had ten layers, and on every one she had made every flavor and topping imaginable. “I’d give a name to it, but even I have my limits. It would take about five minutes to list every single detail of this bad boy.”
“So is that gonna be our dinner for tonight?” asked Pound Cake with a giggle.
“Yeah!” said Pumpkin. “With mom and dad away for the weekend that means NO RULES!”
“YEAH! No rules!”
“Oh, is this right?” asked Pinkie, her eyes narrowing. “I may be more tolerant than your parents but there are still rules I expect you to follow. You understand me?”
“Yes, Auntie Pinkie,” they replied, sounding contrite.
Pinkie looked shrewdly at the two foals. “I report to your parents, you know? I’ll make you just a little nibble of dinner so I can tell them truthfully that I made sure you had dinner before desert. Right?” She winked at them.
“WOOHOO!” The two cheered, slapping their hooves together.
“Now you two behave yourselves.” She let out a yawn. “I’m gonna take a little nap . If you stay out of trouble and don’t fight I’ll make sure you get a nice reward later.”
Pinkie left the room, heading up the stairs to her bedroom.
The two twins looked at each other. “So what do you want to do?” asked Pound.
“We can play tag,” responded Pumpkin.
“Okay.” He poked her chest. “You’re it!” He laughed as he began running.
“Hey!” She started chasing after him around the living room. “I’m gonna get you, Pound.”
“Come and get me, sis!” He slid underneath the couch, coming out the other side. As Pumpkin tried to do the same he hopped up on top of the couch, jumping towards the banister of the staircase, giggling like mad. He slid down, flying into the air a bit as he hit the bottom. Pumpkin intercepted him, jumping and just barely tapping him before he could land.
She ran away, sticking her tongue out at him. “Got ya!”
“I’m coming! Get ready.” Pound only had eyes for his sister, and she kept looking at him, daring him to get her. His sister was slower than him in straight running, so he was catching up to her. He could see she was about to make a turn so he jumped at her, landing on her and the two of them turned over multiple times until they collided into something soft and wet, stopping their momentum.
Pound pushed away from his sister, seeing her covered in something rainbow colored. He looked at his hoof, seeing the same thing. He saw something swaying overhead, and as he looked up he gasped before it fell on the two of them.
Pumpkin pushed her way out of the mess, pulling Pound out too. As she looked over she let out a squeal, seeing the cake Pinkie had worked so hard on was completely ruined. The two of them looked at each other, shaking like leaves. “W-w-what do we do, Pound?” she asked, tears starting to form in her eyes. “Auntie Pinkie is going to be so mad! She was going to have that cake judged by the Equestrian World Record guys."
“I-I-I d-don’t know!” His voice squeaked as he began sniffing. “Um… let’s clean up first, and then we’ll see what we can do.”
The two of them quietly headed up the stairs to the bathroom, washing all the cake off of themselves.
Sneaking up to the top floor the two of them saw Pinkie sound asleep. Not knowing how long they had they raced downstairs to the kitchen.
Getting another look at the destroyed cake they quickly came to the conclusion that there was no way they were going to be able to fix it. They didn’t know how to bake.
Pumpkin was sniffing, on the verge of a breakdown. Shaking her brother hard she said in a strained voice, “What do we do, Pound?”
“Um… um…” His eyes went back and forth a few times, before he began crying too. “We don’t have a choice. We have to leave. We’ll run away. That way Auntie Pinkie can’t punish us. She’s going to hate us anyway. Why should we get yelled at too?”
“R-run away? But where are we going to go? How are we going to eat?”
“I’m… I’m still thinking about that, but do you have any better ideas?”
She let out a groan, looking at the floor. “Nooo.” She fell onto her brother, sobbing a little. “Why are we so stupid?”
“Don’t cry, Pumpkin,” Pound said reassuringly, his natural protectiveness kicking in as he patted his sisters back. Talking much more bravely than he felt he said, “We’ll be okay. We can go to Fluttershy’s house. Or Twilights. Or Applejack’s. We have plenty of friends. They’ll take us in.”
“I… I guess you’re right.”
The two of them left the house. Pound looked around. “Well, I guess we should go to Fluttershy’s. I don’t really know where exactly any of the other houses are.”
“Okay,” Pumpkin said emotionlessly.
As the two young foals walked through town Pound saw his sister barely paying attention to where she was going. He didn’t like to see his sister so upset. She looked so miserable he just couldn’t stand it. “Pumpkin, you don’t have to feel sad. Nothing bad is going to happen to you.”
“That’s nice of you to say, but we both ruined the cake. If Auntie Pinkie or Mom or Dad catch us then we’re both gonna get in big trouble.” Tears poured down her eyes as she begin shaking. “I’m so scared. What if Auntie Pinkie never talks to us again? She worked so hard on that cake.”
“Stop, Pumpkin!” The colt pulled his sister to a halt. Looking into her eyes with all the composure he could muster he said, “She’ll still talk to you. You saw with those bullies that I won’t let anybody else pick on you. I don’t care who it is. No matter if it’s a bully, or Auntie Pinkie, or ever Mom and Dad… I won’t let anybody hurt you, Pumpkin.
“I did it! I did it all. I ruined the cake. I got wild and I knocked the cake over. Just me, not you. If anyone asks that’s what I’ll tell them. Pinkie Promise.” He moved his hooves in the manner that Pinkie taught him. “I’ll take all the blame if it’ll make you stop shivering and put a smile back on your face.”
Pumpkin blinked tears out of her eyes. She thought back to when Auntie Pinkie had taught them about Pinkie Promises. “A Pinkie Promise is the most serious vow you can ever make. At least to me. A Pinkie Promise is something you make with your whole heart and soul. Once you make it you can never take it back. Anyone who breaks a Pinkie Promise is someone who can’t be trusted, unless they have a very, very good reason.”
She closed her eyes tight but tears still poured down her eyes. She knew Pound was being dead serious in saying he would take all the punishment for their actions. She threw herself at him, sobbing a little. “O-oh, Pound! You’re the best!”
Pound felt himself smiling. Just before she had jumped at him he had seen a little grin on her face.
When she pulled back she gave him a peck on the cheek. “I love you, Pound.”
“Ugh!” he moaned, scrubbing his cheek with his hoof. “Don’t DO that! I don’t need your dumb cooties.”
“Fine.” She rolled her eyes with a giggle. “Let’s keep walking.”
Pound was beaming. He could see Pumpkin was in much better spirits now. Giving her a warm look he thought that any punishment he would receive would be worth it just to see his sister feeling cheerier.
“Hmm? Ow!” Pinkie Pie opened her eyes, feeling something tugging hard at her mane. As her vision focused she could make out Gummy. “Gummy!” she whined. “What are you doing? I’m trying to sleep.” He only gave her another hard tug. “Ugh. Fine.” She sat up and he released her. “What’s up?”
Gummy blinked one eye, the one closer to the door.
“Come oh, Gummy. I’m not in the mood for games.” She looked towards the entrance to her room. “There’s nothing there. I’m going back to bed. I’ll play with you later, okay?” She set her head back down, but only got a few seconds of peace before she yelped as he pulled her mane hard.
Gummy jumped off the bed, giving a small hop and walking out the door.
Pinkie sighed before getting up. Gummy seemed unusually worked up. He was usually so calm and easygoing. She followed him down the stairs. As he headed towards the staircase to the ground floor she noticed a peculiar lack of noise. The twins were never this quiet. Feeling a sense of dread she started to think she understood why Gummy was acting this way. She picked him up, running downstairs to the ground floor. The front door was wide open.
“Pound! Pumpkin!” Pinkie yelled out, getting no response. She headed to the kitchen, and saw the ruined cake. She began shaking, her heart racing. She looked behind her to the open door, her dread hardening into terror. “Oh, no! No, no, no! The twins. They’ve been foalnapped!”
She made a rapid search of the house just to make sure, calling out their names all the while, but she didn’t see any sign of them. Her mane slumped, tears coming down her eyes. Her breathing became short and she was having trouble getting oxygen into her lungs. She thought of Mr. and Mrs. Cake. They had trusted her to take care of their children while they were away. This couldn’t happen! She loved the twins. After that talk just a few days ago she wondered if her nightmare was actually going to become real this time. Mrs. Cake would never forgive her if she lost her precious babies.
She had to get her friends. If there was some kind of attack and someone came after them they would likely go to someone they trusted. Of her friends she thought Fluttershy was the best bet. She was the one who watched them the most, after all.
Pound Cake knocked on the door of Fluttershy’s cottage. The two of them waited for a little bit before the door opened.
“Hi, Fluttershy,” said Pound, putting on a smile.
“Oh! Hello, you two,” she responded. “How are you today?”
“Alright, I guess. Can we come in?”
Fluttershy looked up, but didn’t see anyone else. “Are you two alone?”
The two of them shared a quick glance, before Pumpkin said, “We’re… um, we’re... playing hide and seek!”
Fluttershy’s eyebrow went up. “Hide and seek? But Sugarcube Corner is like ten minutes away from here.”
“It’s EXTREME hide and seek!” Pound piped up. “We have to go to one of our friend’s houses, and she has to find us. You can’t tell her we’re here. It would ruin the game. Pinkie Promise?”
Fluttershy could tell that despite their energetic attitudes that they were hiding something. There was a guilty look about them. She knew Pinkie was protective of the twins. Pinkie would never just let them wander alone. Add in the fact they wanted a Pinkie Promise for her to keep silent, and she knew that they had done something bad they were trying to cover up.
“Sounds fun,” she responded. “Pinkie Promise.” She moved her hooves around, and she saw the two of them let out giant sighs of relief. If she had had any doubt before it was gone now. She knew they had messed up big time. Given a little time she would give them some gentle nudges to open up. Once they told her what the problem was she would push them to go back home to remedy the situation.
The two sat on the floor, wondering what to do. Fluttershy came up to them. “It’s feeding time. Would you like to help me feed the animals?”
“Okay,” Pound responded.
“Sure,” said Pumpkin.
For the next ten minutes the three of them gathered all of Fluttershy’s animal friends and helped fill up their bowls.
All three of them jumped as they heard a series of loud bangs on the front door. “Fluttershy! Fluttershy! Are you home? Open the door.”
The twins looked at each other, their hearts beginning to race. “Oh, no,” whispered Pumpkin. "It’s Auntie Pinkie.”
“Run,” he responded. “Upstairs. Fluttershy won’t sell us out. She Pinkie Promised.”
Pumpkin nodded, and the two ran up the stairs to the second floor. Kneeling, they looked down at the front floor, barely out of sight.
Fluttershy opened the door, and saw Pinkie looking a nervous wreck. Her mane was pretty deflated, which was always a bad sign. “Hi, Pinkie Pie. What’s wrong?”
“Have you seen Pound and Pumpkin today? I took a nap, and when I woke up the cake I made was a mess and the front door was wide open. The twins aren’t in the house, and I have to find them.”
Her eyes automatically glanced towards the top of the stairs to where the twins were. She was in an unwinnable position. If she lied Pinkie would futilely search all over town in a panic. If she told the truth she’d be breaking her promise to the twins and break their trust in her. She tried a third option. “The cake? You mean the one you spent all week working on?”
“Yeah! It was completely wrecked. Cake all over the floor. So have you seen them?”
“That’s such a shame about the cake. I know how hard you were working on it.”
Pinkie gave Fluttershy a strained look. “Fluttershy! Why do you keep talking about the cake? Don’t you think there’s something more important than that? The twins are MISSING!”
She began crying, her mane going completely straight. “I can always make another cake, but the twins… the twins are irreplaceable. I love the two of them so much. They fill my heart with joy and love and make the hard days easier. They love to sleep with me and play with me and I can’t imagine a day without them. I wouldn’t be able to bear it if anything happened to them because I was taking a nap. This time Mrs. Cake is definitely going to throw me out of the house. I can’t stand it! I feel like such a horrible pony.” She fell to the ground, her legs too weak to keep her up, and she began sobbing.
The twins both began wailing right along with her, running down the stairs after her. They threw their hooves around her. “We’re sorry, Auntie Pinkie!” they cried out.
Pinkie blinked, hearing the familiar voices. She looked left and right and saw the both of them. “You guys!” Her mane poofed back up. She wiped her face, but the tears still kept flowing. She picked the two of them up, holding them close. “You’re okay!”
“I did it!” Pound said. “I ruined the cake!”
“Me too!” said Pumpkin. “I suggested we play tag.”
“And I tackled her and knocked the both of us into the cake. I’m sorry!”
“Me too! I’m so sorry, Auntie Pinkie!”
“Do you hate us now?”
“Of course I don’t hate you!” Pinkie said, squeezing the two of them. “I could never hate you. You’re more precious to me than my own life. You don’t know just how happy I am to see the two of you.
"Like I said to Fluttershy I can always make another giant cake, but you two Cakes are one of a kind. I can’t make another Pound Cake or Pumpkin Cake half as special as the two of you.” She gave them another squeeze. “And don’t you forget it! If something like this happens again just come to me and apologize. Don’t run away. I may get mad or upset but I’ll always forgive you. Can you promise me that?”
“Pinkie Promise!” said Pound, moving his hooves as he said, “Cross my heart, hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my eye.”
“Pinkie Promise!” Pumpkin said, copying her brother.
“Thanks, you guys,” responded Pinkie. “That means a lot to me.”
“Well, we think you’re one of a kind too, Auntie Pinkie.”
“Yeah!” said Pound. “There’s nobody else in the whole world like you, and we’re so happy we have you as our aunt. Nobody else could ever come close to you for fun and love.”
“Thank you,” said Pinkie, a tear coming down her eye. “Thank you.”