• Published 25th Aug 2013
  • 12,169 Views, 244 Comments

An Apple A Day - Esle Ynopemos



A collection of thirthy-minute short stories about the rootinest, tootinest farm-filly this side of the Everfree. There'll be a chapter a day for thirty days. I ain't no fancy arithmeticker, but that adds up to a whole month of good, health

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4: The Apple Queen [Comedy] [Apples]

((Prompt: Fluttershy! You are the hero chosen by destiny!))

The wizened old oracle muttered inaudible incantations as she drew her hoof in intricate swirling patterns in the dirt. Wisps of smoke from the incense burners coiled around her like dozens of ghostly snakes. All outside sound was muffled by the canvas walls, lending the tent an otherworldly sensation. It was somehow colder inside than it had been outside.

Fluttershy leaned closer to Applejack, shaking. Her eyes were wide as she followed the crone's movements. Applejack steadied her with a stable hoof.

“Many great deeds have already been done,” creaked the oracle, her half-lidded eyes tracing the paths she had left in the dusty floor. “I see... dragons. Ancient legends. Fallen gods.”

The two mares nodded. None could argue their lives hadn't been interesting in the past couple of years.

“Yet,” the oracle continued, raising a gnarled hoof. “Yet, there is still more to come. There is a hero in this space. A pony who will do deeds that will overshadow even all that you have done already.”

Fluttershy's eyes widened. “R-really?”

The oracle nodded. “This mare will wield great power over green, growing things.” She paused, frowning. She knit her brows, filling her face with a maze of wrinkles. “No... that's not right. Not all growing things, just one specific kind of plant.”

Applejack leaned forward. “What kind of plant?”

The old mare wafted a trace of incense toward her muzzle. “The apple tree,” she answered.

Applejack took her hat off and clutched it to her chest. “No kiddin?”

“She will speak to the trees, and they will whisper their answers to her,” the oracle said. “They will share their mysteries with her, and she will know of all things as they pertain to apples.”

Applejack nudged Fluttershy. “Ya hear that? I always thought the wind blowin' through the orchard sounded like somepony whisperin'.”

“She will have mastery over the apple tree,” the oracle continued. “Ponies will come to know her as the Apple Queen.”

“The Apple Queen,” Applejack repeated, sitting back. “I like the sound of that. 'Apple Queen.' Sounds... regal.”

“This is the destiny that awaits you, my yellow friend,” the old crone said, facing Fluttershy.

Fluttershy looked back and forth. “M-me??”

Applejack straightened up. “Now wait just a fruit-pickin' minute! I think you got things a bit confused, here!”

The oracle shook her head. “The spirits are clear. This is the pony destined to become the Apple Queen.”

Fluttershy shrank behind her mane. “I-I don't know anything about apples! I'd make a terrible Apple Queen!”

Applejack put her hat back on and stood up. “This ol' bat's pullin' our legs, sugarcube,” she said, pulling on Fluttershy's shoulder. “Let's go.”

Fluttershy slowly nodded and followed her out of the tent.

The oracle smiled as they left. “Thank you for your patronage,” she called after them.

“What a load of hooey!” Applejack said as they re-emerged onto the carnival grounds. Brightly colored lights and music greeted the two ponies. The smell of cotton candy filled the air. “What do ya say we go find the others, hon?”

Fluttershy smiled and nodded, but slowed as they passed a stand selling apples. “You know,” she said, staring at the barrels of red fruit, “I don't think I've ever eaten just a plain apple before.”

“What?” Applejack raised her brows in disbelief.

“Well, I've had apple pies before, and apple cider,” Fluttershy explained, “but I don't think I've ever had just an apple. It's always been in something.”

“Aw, hon,” Applejack said. “That's somethin' we need to fix! Ain't nothin' more wholesome than a natural, fresh apple!” She turned to the pony running the stand. “Hey cuz! Two apples, nothin' on 'em!”

The salespony smiled. “Sure thing, AJ!”

Applejack passed a shiny red apple to her friend. “For you, 'yer highness.'”

Fluttershy turned the fruit over in her hooves. Slowly, she brought it to her mouth and took a tiny bite.

Her eyes filled with a glowing white light. She hovered into the air, sharp winds whirling around her.

Applejack squinted into the whirlwind, holding her hat on her head. “Fluttershy?”

“I AM FLUTTERSHY NO LONGER,” came a booming voice. “THIS CHILD OF THE TREE HAS AWAKENED MY TRUE POWERS! YOU MAY NOW CALL ME MALUS, QUEEN OF APPLES!”

Applejack stared up as the barrels of apples floated off the ground and whirled in the air around her friend. “Appleseed's ghost,” she muttered, “Ya gotta be kiddin' me!”