• Published 19th Feb 2014
  • 3,102 Views, 191 Comments

At The Drop of A Hat - Tchernobog

A particularly strong gust blows Applejack's hat away. What follows is a chaotic chase across all of Equestria to retrieve it.

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Applejack’s heart pounded in her chest. Her lungs seared with the effort of what had probably been her last scream. Time seemed to slow to a crawl as the wind whistled in her ears and whipped her mane and tail.

She was falling to her doom and doubted that anything could stop her. She wondered if Rainbow would even be able to catch up and save her the way she had saved Rarity. Rainbow was fast and she didn’t want to doubt her, but was she that fast?

Applejack brought a hoof to her lips. She couldn’t believe Rainbow had pushed her out of a moving train car, caught, and dropped her again in mid-air after kissing her like that. For that matter, she couldn’t believe Rainbow had kissed her like that. It was a wonderful feeling, but Dash really needed to work on her timing.

With a resigned sigh, the plummeting farmpony closed her eyes are muttered some final words under her breath.


Her eyes snapped open, watering from the wind now blowing hard against her face instead of her back. A pegasus had thankfully snatched her out of the air, but not the pegasus she was expecting.

The hooves she rested in were greenish instead of blue and even though there was a contrail behind them, it was golden instead of rainbow colored. Surprised and shocked as she was, Applejack wasn’t going to complain for a moment. She just held on tight and waited for the wonderful feeling of solid ground beneath her hooves.

CUT! ” a voice screamed through a megaphone as soon as Lightning Dust set Applejack back on her hooves. “Cut, cut, cut, CUT!

“For Celestia’s sake, how many takes until you ponies get the scene right?! The explosion isn’t supposed to happen until after Dust takes off, and you,” the director turned his attention from the special effects ponies, pointing his megaphone toward Applejack and Lightning Dust. “You’re supposed to swoop in from the right, not the left, and you sure as Tartarus aren’t supposed to be carrying anypony until the next scene!”

Lightning Dust and Applejack both opened their mouths to speak, but a shrill whistle split the air, cutting them off.

The director growled and yelled into his megaphone again, pointing at nowhere in particular. “Lunch break! Be back here ready to work in exactly thirty minutes! If you’re late, you’re FIRED!

As the ponies all over the set scrambled around to get at their lunches and the craft service tables, Applejack turned to Lightning Dust, scratching the back of her neck with a hoof. “Thanks fer saving me. Sorry ya got in trouble.”

“No sweat. I’m about ready to walk off this set if that director doesn’t pull his head out of his rump anyway; probably go give the Wonderbolts another try or something.” Lightning Dust shrugged. “You’re one of Rainbow Dash’s friends, right? What are you doing in Los Pegasus?”

“Name’s Applejack. Some pesky little varmint made off with my hat, and me an’ Rainbow are tryin’ ta get it back.” Applejack’s ears folded against her head. “Ain’t got a clue where she got to, though. She was fightin’ with some lady in black on a hang glider last Ah saw her.” She pointed a hoof toward the western sky.

“Stay put, I’ll be right back.” Lightning Dust shot straight upward, her contrail streaming behind her like a golden waterfall. She hovered just below the level of the cloud district, looking in the direction of Applejack’s previous freefall trajectory.

When she zoomed back to the ground, her muzzle wore an ugly grimace. “I think you’d better get over to the Applewood sign. I’m pretty sure I know what that mistimed explosion was; the ‘D’ is in ruins.”

Applejack’s heart skipped a beat. She’d been so worried about her own crash landing that she hadn’t considered what might have happened to Rainbow.

“Do you need any help?!” Lightning Dust called after Applejack but got no reply. The hatless farmpony was galloping toward the hills as fast as her hooves would take her.

In her haste, Applejack leapt over a cart backing out into the street without stopping for an instant. If she had looked at the driver of the cart, she would have seen a familiar brown Stetson perched atop the donkey’s head.