• Published 23rd Oct 2013
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The Pie and I - Kaf_Kraked_Poni



Shikamaru Nara hunts for a rogue ninja in Equestria. For some reason, Pinkie Pie tags along.

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2. Out of the Frying Pan... Into the Pony

“Wind Release, Air Bullets!” Jujo puckered his lips and inhaled sharply. Blowing out, he exhaled small pockets of condensed air in my direction. Again I avoided the assault by ducking behind a trunk. The air volley tore through the forest, scattering wild animals and loose flora. Bark and leaves ricocheted in the chaos, knocking into me occasionally.

“There won’t be any more woods to hide in if this keeps up,” I said, peeking out from my spot. Jujo climbed into the thicket now, treading carefully by certain plants and trees. Did he know something I didn’t?

“Come on out Shikamaru,” he called in a sing-songy voice. “You know how great of a hunter I am.”

Not that great if he couldn’t see me here. At least in the darkness I would have the advantage. Jujo gave up his search and completed a succession of hand seals.

“Ninja Art: Sticky Fog!” A cloud of white mist expelled from his mouth and snaked its way around the forest. His attack forced me to move from my spot. As the mist floated by, it clung onto a flying insect. The bug struggled to free itself, buzzing about wildly.

This guy is a pain, I thought backing up some more. He molded the mist around his body and began storming through the forest again.

I bent down and relaxed my shoulders. Flipping my palms upward, I placed my fingertips together and closed my eyes. The heaving in my chest slowed and the thumping of my heart dropped. The forest began to shrink away into a dark empty void. Suddenly my mind opened, painting the scene in a deep black cloud. With one final exhale, I began to write on the blank slate.

Four… three… two… one. I invited the world back into my head. Just in time it seemed.

“Heh, now I’ve got you,” he shouted. “Your Shadow Possession won’t work in such a dense forest. Not to mention, you’re trapped by my Sticky Fog Jutsu.”

All he seemed to do was talk. That was fine though; all I needed to do was bide my time. He was right about my Shadow Possession, I wouldn’t be able to use any of my other shadow techniques while moving either, but there was more than one technique I had in my book.

I jumped from my hiding spot and launched two kunai knives at him. He laughed and stood in place as the mist latched onto the ninja tools and froze them in midair.

“Thanks,” he remarked with a grunt. “I’ll hold onto these until I’ve got you in the same jutsu!” He charged and I retreated.

The fog drew closer, keeping a small orbit around its caster as he moved about. Further and further I had to back away, and the forest was becoming less cluttered as we moved on.

“So, you’re reduced to running like a coward huh? Why don’t you show me that rising fighting spirit of yours? You had some of it before.” We had finally reached a clearing.

“Alright then, I’ll show you some of that spirit!” I released the latch on my vest and a scroll fell into the palm of my hand. I launched it into the air over Jujo, summoning a hailstorm of shuriken. He raised his arms, catching the falling weapons with his jutsu. That annoying grin still dwelled over his face.

“Are you hoping that I get tangled in the vines or something with all of this around me?” He lowered his arms and readied the mist to throw the weapons back.

“You really do talk too much,” I said, clasping my hands together. The shuriken around Jujo transformed into small leaflets of paper.

“Explosive tags?!” He quickly repulsed his jutsu, spreading the slips of paper throughout the forest and thinning the mass of mist around him. The tags ignited, lighting up the forest in a giant blaze. Jujo’s mist evaporated from the flames.

Now! “Shadow Sewing Jutsu!” My shadow raced for Jujo’s body. He jumped backward, laughing at the attempt I had made to bind him, but I couldn’t help but smile as well. My shadow latched onto the two kunai he had dropped when the mist faded and tossed it in his direction.

“How well can you dodge in midair?” I asked. He swung his arms over, covering the vital areas of his chest. The two knives penetrated his body, one in his left arm and the other into his right hand. Jujo landed on the ground and removed the kunai from his palm.

“So you hit me, what’s the big deal? I’ve taken papercuts worse than this!”

“I dunno, you tell me,” I said, forming a hand sign. Jujo’s body tensed and he glared at me with a burning hate. Not once, but twice had he been subject to my shadows. “Look carefully,” I gloated. It felt good. “There’s a piece of thread hanging on the end of that kunai.”

“You bastard,” he growled. I smiled and walked closer. He did the same.

“I attached it with my Shadow Sewing after it grabbed the first one. Being unable to dodge in the air, I knew you’d have no choice but to defend your vitals.” I withdrew one of Asuma’s blades and slipped the weapon comfortably into my hand.

“So, you’ll kill me now?”

“I don’t see why not. You’ve tried to kill me more than once already.”

“How will you manage to lug my body around?”

“ If I bring back your headband, it’ll be more than enough proof that you don’t exist anymore.” I retrieved his forehead protector with a shadow and placed it in my pouch.

“You don’t intend on walking now do you?” I found it a little more than enjoyable that he actually thought I was without a solution to this problem.

“I met someone who’ll help me once I’m done here. Now, quit your talking.”

“This isn’t like you Shikamaru, you’re not a cold blooded killer.” I see now, he was trying to psyche me out. He was right, I wasn’t a cold blooded killer.

“I’m not doing this in cold blood,” I responded. His face contorted in surprise. “You threatened more than my life when you committed your crime. You threatened my village. There’s no way I can leave a scumbag like you hanging around, even if we’re stranded miles away from Konoha.”

“You sound too much like Asuma, you know that?” I raised the blade up to his neck.

“And I told you if you spoke his name again without reverence, I’d kill you myself.”

I stayed my hand. Something from the side caught my attention, lurking about in the woods. Jujo looked as well, though not necessarily by choice.

“What are you looking at?” he asked irritably.

I concentrated in the thicket, scanning the area for any movement. I didn’t remember seeing anything resembling a dangerous animal as we engaged inside the forest. There also seemed to be nothing aside from birds and bugs inhabiting the area. So, why did I feel so uneasy all of a sudden.

“Something is hunting us,” I said aloud. Jujo chuckled.

“So what now? we’re going to work together to escape the forest like some cheesy-” My Shadow Possession had turned into a Shadow Strangle then. I moved the bind up to his neck and mouth and constricted the area tight enough for a few mumbles to seep out every now and then. With that out of the way, I continued my scan.

Where are you? What are you? My eyes could not pierce through the darkness all around. I didn’t realize how overgrown the area was. Even considering the fact that it was a clearing, it remained cluttered with various plant life. My eye caught another swift motion in the trees and I turned around. Whatever it was, it got closer that time.

I could feel my shadow waning now. I had to act fast. Jujo would be killed and then I would deal with whatever this thing was. I lowered my Shadow Strangle to his neck and wrapped the dark hand around it. My hands formed the appropriate seal and I released an extensive amount of chakra into the technique.

“Shadow Strang-” was all I could say as a large serpent tore through the thicket and charged straight at us. I had no choice but to release the fool. Jujo dodged the attack as quickly as I did. The giant serpent snaked around and hissed madly at the two of us.

“Fire Style: Giant Phoenix Bomb!” Jujo released. The snake reared its head up and arched its body back. As Jujo’s attack got closer, the serpent opened its mouth and inhaled the massive fireball. It clamped its jaws shut and its eyes changed into a fiery red. The snake erupted in flames and I could almost swear it was grinning at Jujo.

“What the hell? I’ve never seen that kind of snake before.” I covered my face from the raging flames that danced upon the snake’s spine. It burned brighter than anything I had ever seen and boasted a solar mane around its neck.

“Ninja Art,” Jujo shouted forming a hand seal, but the serpent hissed loudly and brought its head down. It struck faster than I could blink and when I had opened my eyes, I saw it swallow something.

“Are you serious?” I accidently shouted. The serpent jerked in my direction and hissed again. It lunged at me, mouth gaped open and ready to consume its other target. I only had enough time to dodge the attack. The flaming serpent whipped around and roared now, gathering a spring of flames within its throat.

What do I do now? There’s literally no time to think of a counter strategy! I braced myself for the breath of flames, but was suddenly pulled to the ground and shut silent by a pink hoof.

“Mnky?!” I mumbled.

“Shh!” she hissed. “Basilisks are attracted to sound and movement. If you keep quiet and stay still it can’t see you!” Damn it this was crazy, but I found myself obeying the pony’s command.

Realizing its prey was no longer panicking, the basilisk closed its jaw and searched about for me. The flames over its body began to die, and soon it returned to the scaly blue reptile from before.

Attracted to movement and sound? I thought snakes sensed things with their tongues?” I looked at Pinkie Pie who was looking straight back at me. Her hoof still resided over my mouth. She shook her head and made a zipping motion with her free hoof I nodded, unsure of the effectiveness of hiding under the enemy’s nose.

The basilisk hissed lowly, flickering its tongue now. I thought for sure it would sniff us out, but instead it found a tree and began licking at the trunk. I had never observed such strange behavior before. After it seemed content with itself, the basilisk slithered away, disappearing deep into the dark of the woods.

“What was that all about?” I asked, after Pinkie released me.

“Basilisks… really scary. They can turn into whatever they eat, and they mark their territory with the spit on their tongue!” She said that last part while holding hers.

“Well, thanks,” I panted. I felt like I should have said more, but in all honesty, that was all I could think of. My mind was still processing a snake exploding into flames and eating a man.

“You look like you went rolling in the dirt!” she exclaimed peeking around me now.

“I got a little dirty,” I replied.

“Hey, where’s that other guy? The one you took that knife out on?”

“That’s not important,” I said, remembering we were still in the midst of that thing. If it had marked its territory as well, there was a good chance it would be back. “We can talk outside of the woods.”

“Okie dokie, but you gotta follow me Shikamaru,” she said bounding away. I reached into my pouch and felt around. My hands glided over some fabric and I sighed, Jujo’s headband was still there. I allowed Pinkie to gain some distance before I followed, convincing myself that this had to be the most ridiculous mission I had ever been on.

“Oh well, mission complete I guess.” I turned around, almost waiting for that man to burst out of the shadows and surprise me with a face full of snake guts. I wanted to believe he was gone now. Then again, man’s been eaten alive and returned, so I had my doubts.

“Hey! Shikamaru! Are you coming?” Pinkie’s voice ripped through the trees. WAsn’t the basilisk still nearby?! A low hiss in the shadows prompted me to catch up with the leaping pony.

***

“What were you doing in there?” I finally asked. We had been walking for a while, but I had remained silent while she was explaining to me the ins-and-outs of that Everfree Forest.

“Well, I galloped away when you told me to, but then I realized that if you were trouble I had to help! So I went back and you were gone, and I thought maybe you entered the Everfree Forest, but then maybe you didn’t. Then I remembered you weren’t from here and didn’t know about its dangers so I went inside to find you...”

I could pretty much sum up the rest of the story in a single sentence, though her retelling took almost twenty lines. Amazingly enough, she was still talking about the experience in the woods.

“...and then I heard a huge explosion and followed the sound until I saw you fighting that basilisk!”

“Do you make it a habit to run towards danger like that?”

“Oh yeah, I even have a song about it!”

“Please don’t sing,” I groaned. “I was being ironic.”

“Hey, that isn’t nice! Is that why the basilisk attacked you?” the intrigue in her tone leveled up. “They also don’t attack unless someone is being mean to them. Were you being mean to him? What about your friend, was he mean to him?”

“Pinkie Pie,” I sighed, “How about we just walk the rest of the way quietly, eh?”

“Quiet? What a draaaag!”

Did she really just say-?”

“There’s no fun in being quiet!”

“I would bet you on that, but from what I’ve gathered, I’d probably lose.” I was really getting irritated now. Not only did she steal my favorite line, but she had some sassy remark to get back at my latest comment. Women. Even in a differing species they were still the same… a right troublesome pain.

Ponyville came into view now. I was expecting to find some sort of sacred grove or maybe even perhaps an illustrious pasture of different sized horses, but the urban establishments and social advances (I assumed of which were high because we were in the middle of a bartering exchange) challenged my beliefs.

“This is Ponyville?” I looked around. Tiny horses of different color with strange markings on their flanks. I had thought that maybe Pinkie was just being unique and fulfilling her quirky nature by tattooing balloons on her butt, but I see now that it may be a sign of something else.

“Yes, Ponyville! Over there is my friend Twilight’s library. She has all sorts of spells there.” There was that word again, spells. Why didn’t they say jutsu?

“Alright, let’s go see if she has a juts- err, spell to take me home.”

“WAIT!” Pinkie’s exclamation startled me to the floor.

“What?”

“I haven’t given you the tour of Ponyville yet. You can’t step into Ponyville without a tour.”

You can’t be serious…

“Oh but I am!”

I pretended that I didn’t catch the fact that she seemed to have read my thoughts. Any more expounding on the “wonders” of this horse was going to pervert my rational mind.

“I don’t have time for this Pinkie Pie,” I said, standing up. She bounced up in front of me and grabbed onto my face.

“OF COURSE there’s time. Just a quick tour, and then I promise we’ll go see Twilight!”

“Let go of my face.” Her mane smelled of frosting and candy. Our close proximity allowed me the luxury of determining if it really was cotton candy covering her head. I removed her from her perch and set the pony down in front of me. “I don’t need a tour right now. I need to find a way to get back to Konoha.”

“What’s so great about a village made of leaves?” she pouted.

“It’s not made of leaves,” I explained again. “It’s hidden in the leaves.”

“So what, is it under a giant pile? That just seems ridiculous.”

“You’re being ridiculous right now,” I said rubbing my temples.

“How does a village of leaves stay hidden if the land is always on fire?”

“You know something, I’d like to know the name of that building over there,” I said between clenched teeth. Her face lit up several shades of happy and she bounded over to the right, cheering excessively. I tried to make out the words, but lost interest after “Greenie weenie.”

“I’ve never seen a creature like you before!” one of the other ponies in town stopped me. Her examination attracted the attention of a few more. “So… tall!”

“Is he a troll?”

“Is he a he?”

“It doesn’t have any fur!”

So, this is what it’s come to… stuck in a foreign nation with a bunch of reject summons and their prodding and poking at my side. God I need to get home…

Lost in my train thought, I had looked all around and lost sight of Pinkie. Was that good or bad? No doubt she would try to come look for me. I contemplated hiding or simply making a run for the library. Then again, it would be hard to miss me in a sea of colorful tiny horses.

She did also save my life. I guess a show of the town wouldn’t hurt… Speaking of sea, these crazy horses were all gathered around me, just staring and mumbling to themselves. Fish out of water seemed inappropriate as an expression here. A walking fish would even fit in better than me. I saw Pinkie Pie returning now, and I pushed my way out of the crowd.

“Shikamaru, I thought I lost you. Come on, I’m going to take you to my place first! Then, we’ll visit all of my friends and you can become their friends too! I know you’ll all get along. We always get along, and if I get along with you, you’ll get along with them!”

“I’ve got a lot of friends at home,” I said raising my hands. “It’s nice meeting new people, but unless we’ll be relying on each other in mortal combat, I’d prefer if we just had a simple tour.”

“You can never have enough friends!” Her hoof rested over her heart and she looked at the ground. A sudden assortment of other equines surrounded her and began rocking back and forth. I didn’t like where this was going. Pinkie opened her mouth and I did the same. My utterance, however, was not as serenading. Neither did I rhyme, or dance about. I should have taken the songwriting warning more seriously.

My mouth slowly closed, and I found myself being pulled here and there, up and down, in and out; there wasn’t one spot in the entire village that I was forbidden from seeing or visiting. Finally Pinkie ended with a high note, landing on the ground with her forelegs raised in the air, a big smile on her face. I really hoped they didn’t do that too often here. I just wanted to know what that one building was.

“That was…”

“Lookie, we’re here at Twilight’s house!” she interrupted.

“Yes, I know… there was a whole verse about it…”

“Okay ShikaShika, let’s officially meet Twilight and get you home! Well, I mean I already know her, but you don’t.” She giggled a little before bounding inside.

“What a drag,” I moaned. I had to stoop down a little to enter the library, but inside I was allowed enough room to stand and not feel like the grumpy green giant that I was outside. (Those were Pinkie’s words, not mine.)

“Twilight! Twilight! Oh, come here, I have someone you have to meet!” She skidded off downstairs, allowing me a moment to breathe. I walked over to the nearest bookshelf and looked at some of the titles. Very strange and bizarre, to say the least.

Colt Therapy? Archaic Spells for the Common Egghead. How to Train your Baby Dragon? Equestrian History…. I removed the book from the shelf and flipped it open to the index. My eyes scanned the pages until I found what I was looking for. I flipped through again, coming to a section regarding the land itself.

Equestria, Land of the Ponies. Founded by the three tribes… pre Celestial Age… Nightmare Moon… dominant inhabitants include three different types of ponies, Unicorns, Pegasi, and Earth Ponies. Unicorns? Pegasi? You mean with horns and wings?

“What kind of weird place is this? Unicorns aren’t real…” I flipped the pages over again and found a small print of the geographical region. Equestria was a large country for sure, and it seemed to not border any familiar villages or territories. Moving over another page, I found a map of a larger area. More expanses of land separated by seas and mountains.

Equestria can’t be this big… but this can’t be the map of the world… Where’s the Land of Fire? Where’s Sunagakure? Heck, Even the Land of Shadows should be here…

My thoughts replayed in my mind from the moment I had been sucked into Equestria until now. I thought it odd that Pinkie didn’t know about ninjas or summoning, but then again I figured the race was just excluded from the rest of the world. Suddenly her ignorance placed another worrisome seed in the back of my head; one that I hoped to rule out from the very moment I arrived. There was the very slight possibility that…

“He’s up here, come on!” I heard from down below. I looked up and saw Pinkie hop out of the doorway and into the room. She moved over to my side, and I heard another set of hooves against the floor down the stairs.

“Pinkie Pie, I hope you realize your little friend is pulling me away from my important studies for the princess,” the voice berated. It wasn’t just me who thought she was a little annoying then.

“C’mon! I know you’ll like him!”

“Is that Twilight?” I wondered as I could finally make out a form. My mouth dropped at the sight. Another pony, yes, but this one had on the top of its forehead a spiraled extension of itself.

“A horn..? A Unicorn?!”

“Meet Twilight Sparkle!” Pinkie exclaimed happily. Twilight seemed just as shocked to see me. “She can help you get back home!”

“Unicorns… don’t exist,” I reasoned, grabbing my head.

“What are you talking about silly? What about those other ponies you met in town?” I honestly hadn’t noticed anything then. I was more concerned with drowning out her singing than paying attention to the choir.

“Pinkie! Who is this? What is this?” Twilight began trotting around me, studying me up and down as Pinkie had done before.

“This is Shikamaru! He’s a ninja from the Lettuce Village!”

“A ninja?” Twilight backed away. Her horn began to glow and from the table to the side, a quill and piece of paper rose into the air. So, was this the magic Pinkie Pie was talking about earlier? She didn’t need to perform any seals and I felt no surge of chakra escape into the room.

“As I seem to be the only human in the area for miles,” I began, “I can say I’m just as surprised as you. I don’t encounter many tiny colorful horses back where I come from. Plenty of toads… but not horses.” Twilight began to scrawl furiously onto the floating parchment.

“What an incredible discovery! A new species never before seen in Equestria! Pinkie Pie, you’ve really stumbled onto something great!” She trotted up to me and cleared her throat. “My name is Twilight Sparkle, student of the illustrious Princess Celestia, and as such it is my duty to record this moment and present my findings to the princess for the betterment of my society.”

“I’m not a monkey,” I replied. “You can’t just say such things and expect me to let you probe me.”

“Tell me, how big is that village of lettuce? And wouldn’t it be impractical to live in such a community?” She waited for me to say something. I stared back, unable to fully understand what had happened. I looked over to Pinkie who held the same expression as Twilight. I could tell this wasn’t going to just be a simple request to go home.

“What a drag,” I sighed, and took a seat.