• Published 7th Jul 2014
  • 2,039 Views, 111 Comments

It All Happened One Morning... - TiberiusPonificus



Something's happened to the children of Ponyville. What it is, no one is sure. One thing that is certain is that they don't look like ponies anymore.

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Ruby Pinch (written by Lordfrieza, edited by me)

“Ruby, are you okay?” I could hear my sister ask from the other side of the door. "You haven't come down to breakfast. Are you sick?"

I stood up once I heard her, but all I could do was cry. I heard her knock on the door again, and finally she opened it. I looked at her, still the same plum-colored coat and purple mane. She was still a pony, so why...?

“Sis, what’s wrong with me?!” I cried.

I felt her hooves wrap around me within a moment and she pulled me against her barrel. She cooed softly as I cried into her neck. I knew that I looked like something out of the EverFree, my mirror showed me as much. Like some sort of hairless thing with just my eyes and mane looking close to what I originally was. I sniffed back a few tears as she rubbed my back.

“I wish that Mama was here,” I whimpered.

“I know, but it’s okay. You’re gonna be fine. We’re gonna get you over to the doctor’s and he’s gonna fix you up,” Berry Punch said.

“But I don’t wanna get a shot,” I muttered.

“Shush. Come on, now.”

I tried to walk, but everything felt off balance. These hind legs are hard to stay on. After a moment, Berry just helped me up onto her back and she trotted down the stairs and into the living room. She stopped when there was a knock at the front door.

“Hello?” she asked.

“Berry, it’s Sound. I wanted to know if you wanted to grab a bite to eat,” he said. She opened the door to reveal her friend, a lunar Pegasus named Sound Ray. If his yellow eyes and silver hair weren't enough of a sign, his bat-like wings certainly were. He looked back and forth between me and my sister with a look that showed he understood.

“So, it wasn’t just dreams,” he finally said.

“What do you mean?” My sister asked.

“Princess Luna has been busy with several of the colts and fillies in Ponyville," Sound explained. "She’s informed some of us that there have been strange dreams that she could barely get into, and even then she couldn’t connect with the children."

“Does she know what’s going on?”

“No, but the last I heard, she had made an inquiry of one Twilight Sparkle. Perhaps it would be best if we went to see her, hmm?” he motioned to the outside with a small smirk on his face.

“Do you…do you think that the other ponies are gonna be scared of me?” I asked him myself.

“Well, no more than they are of me,” he answered. "But with you in this state, I wonder if this has affected every child in town. If that's the case, everypony must be scared."

"You really think every foal in Ponyville has been changed?" Berry Punch asked.

"It would explain everypony's hesitance to come outside," Sound answered. "I noticed when flying over here that there weren't as many ponies out running errands. I could also hear the sounds of panic coming from some of the houses. Given that, I'd say it would be good to guess that this is what's happened."

"What do we do, then?" My sister asked.

"Best thing to do right now would be to see if any other foals have been affected this way. This isn't normally in the job description," Sound let out a big yawn, "especially at these unholy hours. But this is a huge concern, and I know Princess Luna would appreciate any information on this situation."

"Thank you for your help, Sound," Berry Punch smiled. "How about I serve us some breakfast and I get you some coffee?"

"That would be wonderful."

Having to hold things without a horn was really tough. The little feelies at the end of my hooves (or what were my hooves) made things a little easier. I'll never make fun of my sister for not having a horn again. At least sitting was still the same, and eating was easy too.

"So, Ruby, can you think of any of your friends that we can try and visit?" Sound asked me. "We need to see that it isn't just you that's like this."

"Hmm..." I thought about it for a bit. "I've got plenty of friends. We can start with Twist. She lives the closest to me and Berry."

"But what if she's just as scared as you were, Ruby?" Berry asked. "I don't think she's gonna want visitors."

"Then we'll just have to make a more direct visit then, won't we?" Sound said with a smirk.

Once breakfast was done, Sound got me on his back while we flew to Twist's house, just a couple of homes down from mine. I knew there were other kids in the houses nearby, but I knew Twist better than the others. If I wasn't the only one who was changed like this, I could at least try to talk to her.

We flew over to one of the windows on the second floor of her house, the one I knew was her room. The curtains were drawn in the room, so we couldn't tell if she was in the room or not. Sound reassured me to try to get her attention if she was inside, and got me as close as possible to the window, just close enough that I could reach out and knock on it. I curled up my claw and gave a few short knocks.

"Go away!" We heard from behind the curtain. It was Twist. "I'm not acthepting vithitors!"

I sighed and rolled my eyes. "Twist, it's me! I wanted to talk to you!" I shouted to the window.

"Pinchy?" The windows swung open, and there was Twist. At least, I was sure that was Twist. She had the same messy red mane and glasses, and no one could copy that weird thing with her voice that she does, so I knew it was her. Sure enough, though, she wasn't a pony anymore, just like me. Her hairless coat was a little lighter than mine, but we were definitely the same kind of creature. She was about to say something, but her eyes went wide when she caught sight of Sound Ray.

"AAAAAHHH! Bloodthucker!" She screamed as she fell back.

"Sound Ray's not dangerous, Twist! He's my friend!" I shouted. With the window open, Sound Ray was able to get in her room. He carefully swooped his way inside and landed right in the middle. I jumped off his back and came up to Twist to help her up. "Well, he's actually my sister's friend, but I know him well enough."

"Pinchy...you too?" Twist said once she got a good look at me. We had the same claws at the end of our forelegs and hind legs, the same wide barrel and shoulders, and even the same face with our noses smushed into it.

"You woke up like this too, didn't you?" I asked.

"Oh, thith ith terrible, Pinchy!" She cried. "Thummer's only just tharted, and we look like freaks!"

"Calm down, Twist! There's gotta be a reason for this!" I put my claws on her shoulders. "It's not that scary, is it?"

"Mmm...I gueth not..." Twist looked to the side. "It just feelth weird. I'm not uthed to being thith tall, or walking on two legth. And look!" She turned to the side and showed me her flank. "My tail and cutie mark have dithappeared!"

"Think that's bad?" I told her and pulled my hair back. "My horn's gone, too!"

"Oh, Pinchy!" She looked ready to cry and hugged me tight. Still a drama queen, this girl. "What do we do? We can't go outthide like thith!"

"Well, Sound Ray here works for Princess Luna," I started to explain, "and she said that the kids in Ponyville have been in some trouble she can't help with, so he was gonna go find Twilight Sparkle to see if she can find some way to help us. Right, Sound?"

"Right. If there's anypony nearby who can help when there's trouble, it usually falls to her," he answered. "There has to be something that can tell us what you've turned into, and how to change you back."

"Really?" Twist asked.

"Anything's better than staying here," I answered. "Come with us, Twist. We'll go to the library and figure this out together!"

"Hey!" We heard someone shouting from outside. "Can we come too?!"

Twist, Sound Ray and I looked out the window to find another creature like us clinging onto a tree branch. I recognized his voice from school, but getting to see him, I saw a familiar light-brown bowl haircut and a pair of buck teeth sticking out of his mouth. He was also noticeably scrawny, even for whatever we were. I know this colt.

"Featherweight!" I called out. "What are you doing there?"

"Hey, Ruby Pinch! I live next door!" Featherweight explained as he did his best to stay steady. "I saw you and the bat pony coming to Twist's window, and wanted to see what you were doing, so I climbed up this tree to take a look!" He looked down and whimpered. "I didn't think about how I was gonna get down, though..."

"I told him it was a bad idea without his wings..." We heard from below. We looked down to find another boy standing at the bottom of the tree. This one had a navy blue mane with light blue eyes. Blue mane who knows Featherweight. Hold on, isn't he...?

"Shady Daze?" I shouted from the window.

"Hey, girls!" Shady Daze waved to us. "You headed somewhere?"

Once Sound Ray managed to get Featherweight down, we met up in front of Twist's house and explained what we knew, which wasn't much. They knew about as much as we did, but Sound Ray stayed positive and said it proved that this was something affecting quite a few children in town. Seeing him remain so calm in the middle of all this helped me stay calm.

"All right. So we've got a plan," Shady Daze said. "Go to Golden Oaks Library and see if Twilight Sparkle can find anything."

"But how are we thuppothed to get there?" Twist piped up. "We can't go around looking like thith!"

"That's right," I sighed. "The ponies in town will freak out if something looking like us came through it. Celestia knows they've freaked out over less scary things."

"On the contrary, children," Sound Ray spoke up, "maybe you should try walking around town a bit."

"Walk around town? Looking like this?" Featherweight spread his forelegs wide. "Are you insane?"

"Well, just think about it," Sound began to explain. "If every foal in Ponyville has been transformed this way, that would affect their parents, too."

"Yeah. So...?" I wasn't sure where he was going with this.

"So if they see a bunch of transformed foals acting like nothing's wrong at all in the middle of town, perhaps it would put their hearts at ease just enough to avert disaster," Sound finished.

"You really think that'll work?" I asked. That plan sounded stupid, but he seemed so sure of himself.

"The sounds of panic I heard earlier this morning have quieted down considerably," he replied. "I'm willing to bet that the families of those affected by this change have been trying their best to keep their children calm. That's why I think walking around and playing as children do would really help."

"I don't know," Shady Daze scratched the back of his head. "What if that just makes things worse?"

"It's a risk we'll have to take eventually," Sound answered. "Whether or not this is a change we can't reverse, I'm afraid we won't be able to remain quiet about this for much longer. Especially if every foal has been changed."

I didn't even wanna think about what would happen if we couldn't change back. It wasn't that bad of a difference; Walking on two legs has been getting easier and easier the more we do it, and these claw things were good for grabbing just about anything. But I missed being able to use magic, and I'm sure Featherweight misses flying already. If doing this will at least put everypony at ease...

"Let's try it," I finally stated.

"Pinchy?" Twist looked at me like I was sick.

"I mean, it's worth a shot," I continued. "I don't wanna keep sneaking around and hiding for the rest of the day. Or however long we're like this. I'm sure none of you want to, either."

"I was looking forward to playing all summer and finally getting some muscles on these babies," Featherweight said as he flexed his scrawny foreleg. We did our best not to burst out laughing, but he didn't notice. "I'll give up my camera before I have to stay cooped up indoors!"

"I wanted to hang out with Button Mash," Shady Daze said. "He still owes me a rematch. If I stay at home, I'll never get the chance to rub my victory in his face."

"And didn't you want to help out Pinkie Pie at Sugar Cube Corner, Twist?" I asked her.

"I did," Twist answered, her face in a worried frown at first, but quickly turned into one of determination. "Right! I'm not gonna let thith thtop me!"

"That's the spirit, children!" Sound Ray cheered. "Gather up whatever you can! We're going to play!"

The plaza in the center of town made for a perfect spot to play. It's where we usually played on the weekends, after all. If Sound Ray's plan worked, we could keep panic and chaos at bay until a way to change us back. Playing with our toys never felt so important, but I guess there's a first time for everything.

"Hahaha! Look at this!" Shady Daze was holding his Wonderbolts figure above his head. "I can run and hold this at the same time now! It's like he's really flying!" He ran around the fountain making whooshing sounds, with Featherweight close behind him.

"You're doing great, guys! Keep it up!" I shouted at them. I was passing a ball between me and Twist. Bouncing it around while in this body was like playing it for the first time all over again. Twist, however, was having a little trouble.

"Pinchy...everypony'th thtaring..." she said, trying not to let on that she was scared. It was hard to ignore the looks the townsfolk were giving. I couldn't tell if they were scared or just curious of what we were.

"Just a little longer, Twist," I reassured her. "It's already been five minutes, and nopony's started panicking yet. That's already a good sign! And Sound Ray's up above and ready to act if things get nasty."

"If you thay tho..." she relented. I had to admit, this plan was looking less and less like it was going to work. Like, if we made one little slip-up, the whole town would be spooked and running faster than you can blink. Just as I was about to suggest something, different, I heard somepony shouting.

"Hey, Mom! Look!"

Looking in the direction of the voice, I saw a mare with a light brown mane and a peach-colored coat. Sitting on her back was somepony wearing a big blue rain poncho. It's not set to rain for a while, and it's way too hot to be wearing one of those. Could they be...?

"I don't believe it..." the mother said, looking on in surprise.

"Can I go play with them, Mom? Please?" The colt begged his mother.

"Uh...I guess, if there's nothing wrong with it..." the mother answered, still unsure of what to make of what she was seeing.

"Alright! I was baking in this thing!" The colt hopped off his mother's back, and landed on two legs. The claws at the end of those hind legs were exactly like ours. He threw off the poncho, revealing that he indeed had a body like ours, too. He mane was brown with a bit of orange, with matching eyes. Shady Daze stopped when he saw him.

"Button Mash!" He shouted and ran towards him. "There you are! I thought you were gonna run on our rematch!"

"You kidding?" Button Mash grinned. "I've been practicing with these babies all morning!" He wiggled his claws around to show off. They continued talking while heading to the fountain, Shady explaining what we were doing in the middle of town.

"What's going on here?" Button's mother stared in disbelief at all of us. I shrugged nervously, careful not to do anything that might spook her. That's when another voice came up.

"A rather peculiar phenomenon, that's what," said this new voice, seemingly out of nowhere. The space next to Button's mother appeared to flicker, before a white bubble appeared and quickly disappeared, a group showing up in its place.

There was a brown stallion with a tie and a weird-looking hat that was part umbrella. Next to him was a gray pegasus mare with a blonde mane and wayward eyes. Standing in front of them were two transformed foals, one with a short brown mane and wearing a large white dress shirt, the other with a short blonde mane and wearing a pink princess dress. It took me a second to recognize the two kids.

"Pipsqueak! Dinky!" I cried out to them.

"We knew there were others changed," Dinky said as she and Pip walked towards Twist and me. "I didn't think you'd be out in the open, though."

"You sure this is okay, Ruby?" Pip asked. "Being out here like nothing's wrong?"

"Yes, because nothing is wrong!" I answered him. "This change isn't hurting us, and it shouldn't matter what we look like! We're still us, right?"

"I quite agree!" Dinky's father, Time Turner, said. "A bold move, attempting to normalize the change by acting casually. I'm surprised I didn't think of it myself!"

"You two go ahead and play with the others," her mother, Derpy, told them. "Your father and I will keep looking for the source."

"Okay, Mom!" Dinky nodded, then took Pip's foreleg and dragged him towards the fountain to play, while her parents talked more with Button's mom. We practiced tossing the ball with our new claws for a while, when we heard a familiar voice scream.

"I DON'T BELIEVE THIS!"

I looked over and saw two changed fillies, one with light purple and white hair and a familiar looking crown, the other with sliver braided hair and glasses. They were both wearing dresses that matched the coats they had as ponies. Because of that, and the attitude they showed, it wasn't hard to figure out that these two were Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon.

"Are you telling me that the gift bestowed onto us as our mark of prestige was given to you common foals?!" Diamond Tiara said as she stomped towards us.

"This must be some sort of joke," Silver Spoon chimed in. Even looking like this, they still act the same. Oh, brother.

"No joke here, girls! We woke up like this, same as you!" I said, tossing the ball up and down. "You gonna play or just complain as usual?"

"Listen, you..." Diamond Tiara started, but was interrupted by a flash from Featherweight's camera, causing her and Silver Spoon to jump back and stumble, falling right on their flanks.

"Looks like you still need work on walking on two legs, your highness," Dinky laughed.

"Just you wait," Diamond said as she struggled to stand back up. "When we find the way to change back, we're not sharing it with any of you! Then you can stay as coat-less cutie-mark-less freaks for the rest of your lives!" Didn't she just say these bodies were a mark of prestige? I don't understand these girls sometimes.

"Speaking of blank flanks, where are those puny mark crusaders?" Silver Spoon asked, looking around.

"Hey, that's right!" I realized. "I haven't seen Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo at all today! They'd be all over this!"

"Did they get to the library before uth?" Twist asked.

"Maybe," I replied. "I heard that Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle's sisters are good friends of Twilight. They probably headed there first."

"Then, should we get going?" She asked.

"Nah," I answered, bouncing the ball off my hind legs. "If those three are on it, they'll find something. Besides, I'm having too much fun!"

"Pinchy!" I heard a familiar voice shout out. It was Berry Punch, coming back from her stand. "Sound Ray said you'd be here. He told me I should come here so he could rest."

"Oh, he left already?" I asked, looking up in the sky. "I forgot to tell him bye."

"All of you look like you're having fun," Berry said, looking over the plaza square.

"Uh-huh!" I answered with a big smile. "And I bet some of your homemade juice would make things better!"

"Okay, you don't need to drop that big a hint," she laughed. "I'll make some and bring it up right away!"

"Cool!" I jumped up. "Make sure to make a lot!"

"For what?"

"For everypony that's coming!"

Author's Note:

Okay, I lied. This is the longest chapter I've done, though I'm sure the Spike chapter will take that title once it's finished.

So yeah, I cheated a little bit and included other foals in this chapter. I wanted to include them in the story, but didn't have enough to make a full fledged chapter, so I stuck them here and it wound up working pretty well.

Spike's chapter will definitely be up next. For now, enjoy this chapter and remember to comment if you'd like. To all those who have faved this story and are following me as a result, I thank you most gratefully.

See you in the next chapter!