• Published 27th Oct 2014
  • 1,423 Views, 38 Comments

Breaking Standards - TheGlitchInTheMatrix



Hyper-Intelligent, but stuck in Equestria, a human, hiding among the native humans,named Rick, breaks typical human standards. Inspired by the YHaY-Verse.

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Big Chase! And an Oh So Terrible Cartoon Quote...

Author's Note:

Had a slight delay in posting this chapter. Had a power outage that completely scrambled my computer's brains for whatever odd reason. Didn't even know that was technologically possible...
So I spent the majority of my weekend re-organizing all of my files... and I mean ALL. OF. MY. FILES. This is the last of our pre-written material, so expect a highly sporadic update schedule.

Big Chase! And an Oh So Terrible Cartoon Quote…

There they sat, Octavia and Rick, panting and sweating after their passionate session of music making. Of course, if that were read out of context and with complete disregard that the author is currently writing directly to you in violation of fourth wall boundaries, that would sound like a pretty hot clop time.

Fortunately for all you non-liberal, counter-hippy, Beatles hating fucktards, this was an intentional innuendo that would make both our parents ashamed. They just played songs all day… perverts.

“I can’t believe it still,” Octavia sighed wistfully, her eyes closed and a contented smile on her face.

“Believe what?” Rick asked, half paying attention to her and half paying attention to repairing his improvised ocarina. Despite the ocarina’s nickname of “Sweet Potato Flute”, it didn’t actually function well when made from an actual sweet potato.

“This day I’ve had so far. Absolutely unbelievable!”

“Well, I can vouch for half of the day you’ve claimed you’ve had, but I’m not aware of what happened before this half.”

“One of my biggest concerts were scheduled for today and I completely just blew the normal score off and played only one song that I improvised to share my broken heart, most likely upsetting hundreds of ponies, came here and smashed a cello and tried to the best of my ability to mutilate that violin—”

“I thought you said it fell into that state of disrepair from neglect?” Rick raised an eyebrow and watched her curiously.

She smiled at him nervously, “I was…being misinformative in an effort to…hide myself.”

“Fat load of good that did you,” Rick smiled warmly.

“Quite,” Octavia agreed, chuckling a little in response, “so today I was betrayed, than committed a betrayal, wallowed in depressing music, met you, more depression, but shocked into curiosity, than happily played lively and foreign tunes with a hyper-intelligent Nord!”

“See, when you put it that way, it sounds like I’m some kind of walking talking encyclopedia/almanac/instructional booklet,” Rick muttered.

“How many instruments can you play?” Octavia suddenly asked.

“Uh… I can actually play many,” Rick answered, thinking deeply to get a more accurate answer.

“Uh-huh, and how many hobbies are you regular in?”

“Now define ‘regular’,” Rick said defensively, crossing his arms with a slight blush across his cheeks.

“How many languages can you speak?”

“Ninety-eight,” Rick said without hesitation. Octavia blanched and allowed her jaw to take a leave of absence from the upper part of her skull, but Rick giggled a moment after, “Nah I’m just joshing; I can only speak seven. Not so impressive now is it? Only seven, hah!”

“Well, you put it that way and—Buck no! That’s still insane! What in Equestria would somepony study so many languages for?!” Octavia responded at first in an agreeing tone than popped right back into being bamboozled.

Rick just shrugged his shoulders.

“As I’ve said: Hyper-Intelligent,” Octavia grumbled, crossing her forelegs across her barrel.

“And I still think that’s a matter of opinion,” Rick grumbled back.

"Seeing as how you chose not to divulge certain truths about yourself, it could be safe to assume that those are, indeed, facts, rather than opinions," Octavia replied smugly.

Rick just shook his head and went back to trying to patch up the mutilated spud that made his instrument.

Octavia went back to her cello and replayed certain bars of some of the tunes they had played together. At least, only the lively ones; she had came free of her funk just a moment ago, no need to get back into it. Then, a soft and slow knocking reverberated through the house from the front door.

"Hey 'Tavi?" a mare's voice called through the door, "I know you're home and I know that you're not gonna open the door." Octavia's face scowled when she heard the voice and she turned away, a resolute scowl on her brow, "I most certainly am not," she mumbled. "But I'm not here for that anyway. I know you're finally done with me…"

Octavia's scowl softened ever so slightly, but she didn't turn. "I can say I'm sorry until I'm blue in the face, but the truth is, I don't think I deserve to ever be forgiven for how I've treated you." Octavia's scowl lessened even further, but still, she did not face the door. "I bucked this up—really bad this time; there's no coming back from this." Octavia's scowl softened substantially, but remained apparent, and her head shifted ever so slightly to the door.

There was a stretch of silence, and Rick assumed that whoever that was, confessing out there, had left, until they inhaled deeply and continued, "I'm so sorry, Octavia," the voice was shaky, "I'm giving this back to you; I definitely don't deserve it. Good luck in the future, Octavia; you deserve better friends than the piece of shit I turned out to be." Octavia's scowl vanished entirely, her ears splayed backward, and she half-turned to look at the door, "That's not true, Vinyl," she whispered ever so softly.

Nothing more came from the Lore Door, spouting out confessions and pleas for forgiveness. Octavia and Rick sat silently, Rick unsure if he should do anything. After another minute of inactivity passed, Octavia got up and walked over to the door, pressing her face against the door to peer through the peephole.

With slow motions, Octavia opened the door and stuck her head out. From his position, Rick couldn't tell if the mare outside was still standing there, but judging from her sweeping gaze and then a choked sob when she looked down at the ground, something serious had just happened.

Rick didn't move, only let Octavia shudder in the doorway with repressed sobs. She did move back in, something glinting in her teeth that was in view as she closed the door. "Octavia?" Rick called to her.

"I want to hate her," Octavia said shakily, "Celestia knows just how much she's hurt me and how much I put up with her. But after this, I truly understand just how much she meant what she said."

Standing up, Rick stepped over to her side and saw a pair of oversized, purple-tinted sunglasses. They had a pearlescent finish on them that made them seem like different colors and he couldn't see through them at all. A pretty bitchin' set of shades.

"All it takes is for someone to lose something for them to understand just what exactly it was they lost," Rick said, not really thinking about what he was saying. It wasn't until Octavia started chuckling weakly that he became tense. "Hyper-Intelligent and a philosopher. Is there anything about you that isn't impressive?"

Again, acting on impulse rather than thoroughly comprehending what he said, he looked down at his crotch, "Well, I'm not really that well-endow—Nope, nevermind, that's pretty impressive too."

Octavia gave him a flat stare, "I rest my case. For your maturity… or lack of, is very impressive."

"I try," Rick shrugged, "Can't really be too likeable, can I?"

"It's hard to tell if you're being highly arrogant, or just kidding around," Octavia shook her head disapprovingly.

Smiling warmly at her, Rick rubbed her shoulder affectionately, "Just trying to cheer to you up." Octavia flinched at the sudden contact, but returned the smile, "Well, I don't think it worked as well as you planned, but I appreciate the effort."

"Anytime," Rick nodded, then looked through a window next to the doorway and the color drained from his cheeks, "I shall take my leave now, if you don't mind."

"Not at all. It was a pleasure meeting you, Rick… and fairly surprising I might add," Octavia held out her hoof, of which Rick firmly took into his hand and shook. He was trying to keep a calm visage on, "The pleasure and surprise is mine as well. I have two favors to ask of you before I leave though."

"Of course?"

"Whoever that was that left those sunglasses; I know that those have a lot of value to whoever left them and to you."

"They were a special gift from me. She never was seen without them on before. It's a trademark of hers; you see those before you actually see her and you'll know DJ Pon3 is on stage," Octavia nodded slowly, sniffling slightly.

No idea who that is or what that has to do with a stage. Obviously a DJ. That's her friend though, I can figure that much. I'm sure these two will reconcile soon. But I better book it! Can't rush her or I'll seem obvious though…

"Give her a chance the next time you see her." Octavia looked up at him, a look of surprise on her face before it cracked into a gentle smile, "I think I can do that. And the other favor?"

Rick looked back through the window, the color further defecting from his cheeks, "Do not tell any other living soul, no matter the circumstances, about me!"

Octavia quirked an eyebrow and was about to ask just why he was so secretive about it when he suddenly yelped and dashed out of the house.

Twilight jumped at the sound of a door crash and found the human-imposter running from Octavia's house. For a moment, she was torn to follow him and checking up on her friend. She chose to check on Octavia first, "Octavia!"

Octavia stepped out of her house, thoroughly confused as to what about Princess Twilight Sparkle was so terrifying to the Nord? "Yes, Princess?"

Twilight ran over to Octavia then stopped when she was close enough to talk normally without having to scream across Ponyville, "Are you alright? That human didn't hurt you did he?"

"Perfectly fine. That No—Human was extremely well-behaved. Why? Is there something wrong?" Octavia asked cautiously.

"It's not human." Believe me, Octavia thought with a mental scoff, I know that personally. "And he might be a threat if not properly evaluated."

"Don't you think that's a little over the top? I mean, sure, he may unidentified and we don't know from where he hails, but to assume he's hostile?"

Twilight shook her head, "I tried to grab him earlier today, but my magic backlashed when it made contact with him. I had a mental flash of another human in strange clothing that was smiling!"

Octavia continued to smile internally; sure, normal humans don't smile, but Rick wasn't human after all, "Oh dearest me, a human that smiles! We must contact the Royal Guard before we all perish from common courtesy," Octavia deadpanned, giving Twilight an incredulous look.

Twilight's ears splayed backward and she blushed bright red, hearing just how ridiculous she was being. Maybe she was going a little overboard with how she reacted, "Maybe, I'll just track him down and observe him."

"You do that. Have a nice day, Princess Twilight," Octavia smiled and half-bowed.

"Please," Twilight smiled back and returned the bow, "You don't have to do that; we're friends after all."

"Sure," Octavia responded then gently closed the door giving Twilight a final wave. After the door closed, Twilight slowly spun in place to look around, hoping to find the human. Instead, she found something that could help her.

With a triumphant grin, Twilight moved forward slowly, inhaled and called up to the cloud floating overhead, "Rainbow Dash!"

A snort came from the cloud and a lazy "what" was groaned from it as well. "Rainbow Dash! Could I talk to you please?"

From the cloud in the sky (Because where else would clouds be?) a shock of rainbow colored hair attached to a blue pony's head raised up. A pair of blue furred arms raised high over its head as it yawned and stretched. "Twilight?" the blue pony mumbled and looked around groggily.

Giggling to herself, Twilight stretched her wings and took to the sky, flapping her way to Rainbow. "Good Afternoon, Sleepy Head!"

Rainbow turned her head to Twilight, her intense, pink eyes still partially lidded from sleep, but she still smiled warmly nonetheless, "Heya Twilight! What's up?" Rainbow yawned again, repeating her stretch.

Carefully, Twilight set down on the cloud, "I was wondering if you could help me with something."

Rainbow plunged her head into the cloud and shook it vigorously, raising it back up after a moment with a gasp. Beads of water clung to her fur, matted her mane, and the sleep in her eyes was scrubbed away. She was now thoroughly awake, "Sure! Whatcha need?" Rainbow smiled, an energetic aura bursting from her body as her wings unfurled from her body.

"There's a strange human in town. I want to check him out and make sure he's not gonna hurt anypony if left on his own."

"Hmm? A strange human? What's so strange about him? All humans look the same to me," Rainbow said.

"His skin is a lot smoother and lighter, along with his hair and eyes," Twilight explained.

"Oh! You mean that kind of 'check out'!" Rainbow grinned and waggled her eyebrows suggestively.

"Ugh, No, Rainbow," Twilight groaned, "Its not that that's strange; he could speak!"

"Whoa!" Rainbow smiled widely, clearly awed, "Awesome! Where is he at!?"

"I don't know, but that's why I needed your help," Twilight said.

"Sure! Just tell me where you last saw him running," Rainbow trotted over to the edge of the cloud and peered over, scanning for the human in discussion.

"That way," Twilight pointed.

Rainbow followed her hoof and scanned the general area, immediately spotting a moving shadow, darting from house to house, like it was trying to hide, "Aye aye, Captain," Rainbow whooped before jumping off the cloud, spreading her wings wide and gliding toward the human.

On the ground, Rick slid behind a tree, poked his head out to scan around for the horned pegasus…winged unicorn… the Purple It! He didn't see her around, and jumped to cover behind a house with a window garden. He repeated the same searching pattern when her heard a whooping cheer from the sky.

With a wary gaze, Rick looked up and saw a rainbow flying right at him! He jumped in surprise and bolted, forsaking stealth and just fuck all!

"Hey! Come back here! Twilight wants to talk to ya!" Twilight!? Bitch! She ratchet! Ain't no way Imma stick around for that crazy! Not by the hair of my freshly shaved chin!

Rick continued to run, dodging through ponies as he came into a forest. There was a sign just before he ran in declaring "Welcome to Whitetail Woods!" Just behind him, he heard the flapping of wings growing in intensity and a whistling of air as the pegasus violently ripped the air apart with her aerodynamic passage.

Listening intently while keeping a dead sprint, Rick timed a stunt to shake his pursuer. "Almost," he heard the pegasus whisper, "Gotch-Wha!?" Just as she closed in, Rick ran straight into a tree, hopped, planted the sole of his foot into it… and ran up the tree five steps, grabbing the lowest hanging branch and scrambling onto it.

Just below him, he saw the pegasus double back after making an accidental, huge, over-taking flight. She didn't fly up to meet him though, and just plopped onto the ground, her haunches firmly planted and her jaw wide open in amazement.

"How in the buck did you do that!?" She whispered in awe. Truthfully, Rick had never made it past three full steps before and had to launch on the fourth step or risk falling back down. He had run a full five steps and didn't even use the Last Step Launch! Adrenaline must be a hell of a drug…

With careful and calm flaps, Rainbow slowly ascended to the human, hoping to not scare him off, "Hey, buddy. I'm not gonna hurt you," Rainbow cooed affectionately.

Remaining tense and ready to continue his run, Rick pivoted slightly, turning for a better launch angle should things turn fast on feet and wings again

"Where you from, big guy?" Rainbow asked, a small smile on her face and an almost expectant look.

Rick cocked his head to the side, imitating a clueless animal when approached by a strange creature, but he kept his muscles ready to fire.

"You got an owner? You're wearing a robe thing so you should have an owner. Maybe Zecora? That looks like something she would have and your something she might have too," Rainbow continued. Still keeping up acting like an animal, albeit a very well-trained one, Rick visibly twitched when he heard Zecora's name.

"So Zecora is your owner, huh? Want me to take you back to her?" Rainbow asked as if she was talking to another pony. Rick didn't answer, and Rainbow sat there staring at him for a few seconds, that same expectant look on her face.

"Hey, what gives? I thought you could talk," Rainbow flapped a little closer, leaning in to examine Rick closer. He didn't giver her that opportunity and stepped backward, maintaining the distance between themselves. "Hey, I already said I'm not gonna hurt you, boy, just come down and I'll take you to Twilight."

Nope, nope, and that other word that sounds like nope… Nope! Rick jumped off the tree when Rainbow made another advance. Rainbow gasped when she saw Rick make the jump, assuming that the height would cause him harm.

Normally, with how high the two were, the fall would maybe sprain the ankles and cause some knee damage if the jumper wasn't trained… But this was Rick we're talking about. He landed on the balls of his feet, absorbed the shock on his heels, then rolled off the excess pressure with a Skill Tumble.

Another dropped jaw to mark for this story for Rainbow balking at the unexpected acrobatic ability of this strange human.

Rick gave her a backwards glance then sprinted from his crouched position, springing off the ground expertly.

Rainbow quickly recovered and made chase once more, mildly excited at the prospect of a race of sorts. This human, as agile and as strange as he is shouldn't be much faster than any other human she's ever had to chase after. But, Rick's sprinting style was much more ergonomically correct and efficient, allowing him to almost quadruple the normal human's speed!

"How in the buck are you this fast!" Rainbow cursed, flapping her hardest to just start gaining on him.

Internally, Rick smirked and thanked the three years of track in middle school. The martial arts and marathon running helped with his endurance after that.

Deftly and precisely, Rick and Rainbow wove through the trees, hurdled bushes, knee-slid under branches, and vaulted off the few trail bars that were scattered around. Very quickly, Rainbow found herself enjoying herself, despite how difficult it was for her to actually reach him. To be presented with a challenge like this after so long was amazing!

After another fifteen minutes of running, they reached the other end of Whitetail woods, back into view of Ponyville. Scanning around quickly, Rick found himself in a park, where numerous ponies stopped to watch the duo running about.

They saw a human stutter-step, jerk in different directions, and jumping over a blue pegasus who zig-zagged, dipped, and step-and-flapped after him. It was very confusing to see out of context and highly amusing.

However, as deft and cunning as he was, Rick knew that without many obstacles to impede his pursuer, it was only a matter of time before he was caught. On that thought, Rick suddenly changed direction, dove over a bench that had a cream-colored mare and mint-green mare sitting together, and watched as Rainbow sailed overhead, just short of grabbing his heels.

Smirking visibly before he could stop himself, he stood up and stared at the two mares before him. One was sitting normally while the other was… It looked off for her, it really did, but she was sitting like you would imagine your typical human couch potato who probably spent their Saturday morning watching cartoons… Including the beer belly but it was safe to assume that these confounded ponies didn't drink.

They watched him with curious stares before Rick smoothed his face over, hoping to God that they didn't see his smirk. It would seem they didn't because they didn't do much more than give him that stare that just screamed, "Can I fucking help you?"

Not giving them a second glance, Rick continued running, listening for Rainbow's progress, as he made a mad dash to Ponyville proper. It took a second, but he finally heard that familiar feather flap, that flap that declared a certain pegasus was about to get their hooves around their human target. "You're just making this harder on yourself, boy!" Rainbow called in singsong.

Hidden to Rainbow, Rick shook his head slightly, grinning to himself, I'm having too much fun to really care! The little voice in his head sang back.

Twice more, Rick evaded Rainbow's grabs, jumping to the right to dodge her as she finally caught up, than Leap-Frogging her as she U-Turned to try to nab him again. Rainbow laughed loudly at the Lea-Frog, completely not expecting the childish maneuver, but it definitely tripped her up.

I like this human, Rainbow thought, Maybe, if he does belong to Zecora, she'll let me play around with him some more! The two ran into the first line of houses that made up the more residential part of Ponyville, weaving through alleyways, main streets, the odd stall here and there, because of the tighter spaces, both pursuer and pursuant had to slow down significantly, but their speeds were still impressive.

Rick began to finally feel his heart speed up as the taxes for oxygen in his body began to increase and those damned Hippie Cells started protesting against Taxation without proper Representation. He was in a Life and Death situation for crying out loud! But since his brain was an awesome President of Body, their pleas were heard and new plans were passed and put into action.

Slowing his pacing, ever so slightly, he put on a show for Rainbow that showed a fake fatigue beginning to slow him down.

"Now I gotcha!" Rainbow put on a sudden burst of speed, forsaking the extra caution for what she believed was a sure grab.

And to the victor of this round, Rick rises triumphant, proud, and like a sneaky, little bastard. Just as he heard her wings pull on the air as viciously as they did, he launched himself sideways, lifting both feet to run along the wall on his right. He made two steps than jumped forward… planting a foot against the wall that Rainbow hadn't seen Rick running at. Rainbow gasped in surprise and slammed into the wall with a smack just as Rick vaulted off the wall she hit, effectively turning about face and running back a ways before vanishing behind a corner.

With a groan, Rainbow slid off the wall as Gravity reminded her that she was still playing by his rules. With a soft thud, Rainbow hit the ground, legs splayed out and her head bobbing about as her eyes rolled in their sockets. She took a moment to count the three birds flying laps around her head, then shook them away, "Damn, that hurt."

With a grunt, Rainbow pulled her feet back under her and pushed back up into a standing position; orthodox stance for textbook walking. She looked to her left down the alley where the human may have continued, but she could have sworn that he somehow got behind her and went backward a bit. How the buck a human learned to do that, Rainbow couldn't even fathom. The only concern in her mind right now was that she was just outmaneuvered… by a human!

"Oh boy, I cannot let the Wonderbolts hear about that one; I'll never hear the end of it," Rainbow groaned, shaking her head in disappointment.

Rick slid around another corner, than rolled into a fairly narrow alley way, crouching down behind a couple of bales of hay to catch his breath. That pegasus just didn't wanna give it up! Was it really all that bad that a human learned a new damned trick? According to the Purple It, a human who can mimic words was the reason the Pony-pocalypse happened.

Feeling his heart finally slow to a more proper BPM, Rick sighed and allowed his mind to catch up on the paths he ran, mapping the whole area to the best of his photographic memory. You damned hippies in my body, demanding lesser Oxygen Taxes. You're all the reason why I hate Mondays! Rick internally screamed. Of course, he was trying to make himself laugh… It wasn't funny at all though.

Overhead, something whooshed, and the tell-tale feathery gusts of wind alerted the senses of a nearby pegasus. Looking up, Rick saw the Purple It flying about, scanning the ground beneath her. "Rainbow? Where'd you go?"

Rick watched her carefully, waiting for her to vanish from view, then began to slink away, like a shadow in broad daylight, never to be seen for the next hour or so.

"Rainbow?" Twilight called again, just a hint of concern in her tone for her friend. She continued to cruise over the neighborhood, swearing that she saw the two running in this direction just after she followed them out of Whitetail.

Making another sweep overhead, Twilight inhaled to call again when she familiar rainbow of Rainbow's rainbow mane. Smiling, Twilight tucked her wings in and dipped down, diving to her friend's side, "Rainbow!"

"Huh? Oh, hey, Twi. You happened to see where the human went?" Rainbow smiled back then continued looking around.

"No. You lost track of him?" Twilight asked, a confused scowl on her face, Nothing loses Rainbow Dash in a chase! He's definitely not human, Twilight thought.

"Only for a moment. He did this weird… thing… with the wall and I wound up flying straight into it!"

"A thing? Like, what did he do?"

"Well, it looked like… he ran on it… then bounced off the wall I hit while going over me," Rainbow tried to explain, her face twisting up in contemplation.

"Ran on it? How do you 'run' on a wall? That's not physically possible, Rainbow," Twilight scoffed.

Rainbow shot her a sideways glare, "I'm just telling you what I saw, Egghead, and it happened whether you believe it or not."

"Well, regardless of what the human imposter did, we still have to track him down again; there's no telling what might happen if he just runs about on his own," Twilight spread her wings and took back to the sky, Rainbow following her up just a moment later. "He might just take a dump or take a leak somewhere without somepony to clean it up, that's not too horrible, Twilight."

Twilight's ear twitched. That was most definitely not one of her concerns. "I'm concerned for this human because of his strange appearance, mannerisms, and ability to speak."

"About that," Rainbow spoke up, scanning the ground as they flew along, "You said he could talk, but he didn't even try to when I started talking to him."

"He won't give himself away again after blowing his cover the first time," Twilight explained, "He tried to mask it as a response to a 'speak' command, but I'm not too sure if that would work again."

"Why not?" Rainbow asked, not quite understanding Twilight's reasoning.

"Because," Twilight began, "Humans don't have very expressive eyes or facial features. When I confronted him, I saw fear."


Rick sneezed, then looked up into the clouds, trying to find the source of whatever the hell caused his third damn sneeze. He didn't have any allergies from what he was aware of, and there was nothing particularly allergenic within his immediate vicinity.

Continuing his predatory stalking of invisible and non-existent prey, Rink moved around Ponyville, carefully navigating his way to Sweet Apple Acres, being as invisible as the second child in a nuclear typical family. I'm burning in Hell for thinking that seeing as how I was the second child…

Just almost reaching the final stretch to whoever this mediator was that Pinkie claimed resided in this jungle of apples, a very familiar sound assailed his ears. The sound of a demon, relentlessly tearing apart atmospheric pressure in a aerodynamic flux of pressure and lift to achieve flight. In short, a goddamned, motherfucking, titty-juggling, shit-munching, cunt-burger pegasus.

"Found you, faker!" The Purple It's voice rang out, faint and distant.

Oh, okay it's just the Purple It and not Rainbow, for a second I was a little worrie—SHIT!!! Rick yelped as his brain actually registered who had found him, and he made a mad dash to the orchard. He hoped that amongst the trees he could lose his pursuers once again.

"You're not getting away from me this time!" Ah, so Rainbow is with her, that's good then. I thought maybe she wasn—Godammit, Needless to say, Rick was going to accept that challenge and get away from her.

Feet beat the ground relentlessly while wings abused its sister, Wind, just as equally as both parties tried to outpace the other. Rick had just passed the large sign that signified to all, very proudly, that this was, indeed, Sweet Apple Acres, and began to formulate potential plans and motions to lose Purple It and Rainbow.

"I'm gonna fly over the tree line so I can monitor his motions, you stay on him, all right?" Twilight called to Rainbow just before pulling up.

"Roger that!" Rainbow called back, pulling further ahead to stay on the humans heels. I'm gonna watch him carefully this time; I have got to see how he lost me the first time, Rainbow mentally declared.

At breakneck speeds, Rick wove through the orchards, kicking up dust and leaves behind him. Rainbow followed closely, trying to just keep pace with him, not trying to overtake him so that she could watch him. Overall, it didn't seem like either of the two were actually really trying.

Then, Rick decided to pull his pursuer closer again; he deepened his breathing and exhaled in shallow bursts, imitating fatigue without accidentally hyperventilating. Rainbow narrowed her eyes, suspicious of this similar action to the first time she lost him. Keeping it cautious, Rainbow only slightly picked up her pace, closing in on her target inches at a time.

Hearing the distance of Rainbow's flaps on his position, Rick monitored her distance, weaving through more trees and keeping up his faux-fatigue. Listening intently, he timed another acrobatic stunt just as she was about to reach grabbing distance.

At this time, Rainbow itched to just dash forward and snatch him, but she knew that was probably what he wanted. Rainbow may not be the brightest of her friends, but she was not easily duped with the same trick twice. She closed in the last few inches that were key for a grab when the human made his move.

Stepping further to the right than normal in a typical stride, Rick primed his jump. After his weight shifted, he threw it back to the left and jumped with it. Flying through the air, Rick eyed the tree he aimed at and crouched his leg tight to his body. Just below him, Rainbow's eyes widened and she smiled a very open smile. Once Rick's foot touched the tree, he kicked off of it and kicked out with the other, changing his direction with minimal loss to his speed and at a much steeper angle than normally achieved.

Now that was awesome, cool, and radical, all in one move, Rainbow admired. But this time, she was able to flare her wings, loop on a dime, and change direction almost as fast as Rick without losing that much more speed than Rick did.

Chancing a backwards glance, Rick was surprised to see the stubborn flyer still behind him. Albeit not as close as previously, but still nowhere near where Rick had planned to lose her at. Cursing silently, Rick leaned forward and continued running, dropping his act with the breathing.

"Rainbow!?" The Purple It called from above, "I lost you guys, where'd you go?"

"4 o'clock from your West!" Rainbow called back. Twilight faced the west and turned the proper angle, immediately spotting the blur of human skin and blue fur underneath the tree tops.

Panting slightly, Twilight spun in the air and flapped after them, Darn these two and their athleticism, Twilight protested, You'd think with how often I'm required to run and fly for the sake of Equestria I'd at least consider more cardio.

While Twilight had her mental rant I the air, Rainbow was on the ground, greatly enjoying her self in this challenging chase. Rick, on the other hand, was actually getting irritated at just how obstinate his pursuers are.

You know, Rick's internal Ass started, This could have all been avoided if you hadn't spoken to try and read a few books.

Shut up, Rick spat back at himself, That information could have proven priceless for the next two years.

Afr that mentally disturbing back-and-forth, Rick became aware of a pant from behind him. Risking another backward glance, he saw Rainbow's mouth begin to open and her breathing begin to shorten. Looking back forward, Rick grinned, finally seeing where he could finally stop this cursed race to the death.

Taking longer strides, Rick lowered himself slightly, tensing the muscles in his gluts and thighs, priming the natural springs within.

From behind, Rainbow watched with a curious expression, never before seeing a human run in that strange position before. She didn't have much time to contemplate, however, because in the next instant, Rick launched himself straight up, flinging his arms up and over his head, and latch onto a low-hanging branch of an apple tree.

Gasping loudly at the strange feat, Rainbow lost track of her forward path. Rick firmly grabbed the branch, then threw his legs forward and up, swinging the rest of his body in a sort of flip to throw his hips on top of the branch, allowing him to stand up on it. Forgetting about her flight path and mesmerized by the strange action, Rainbow slammed into another tree that Rick had been running at.

Hello, Tree Bark, my old friend, Rainbow dumbly murmured in her head before flopping backward after bouncing off the tree. Rainbow's head spun and whirled, more birds flew over her head, but she suddenly felt pretty tired. A quick nap won't hurt anypony, Rainbow thought before slipping into unconsciousness.

From his hidden and shadowy perch in the tree, Rick winced when he heard the sickening crack of pony skull and tree trunk attempt a mating routine. Looking down, Rick saw Rainbow flop backward and fall unconscious. He hoped she was going to be alright, but with Purple It hovering over the trees, he didn't dare go to check. Fortunately, Purple It flew down, calling out to the downed pegasus with concern ruling her tone.

"Rainbow Dash! Are you alright!?" Twilight landed beside Rainbow and began nuzzling her face in an attempt to wake her.

Rainbow lazily slurred something under her breath and rolled away from whatever was trying to wake her up.

"Rainbow Dash," Twilight deadpanned, seeing her friend was perfectly fine and no longer in need for concern. She planted both her hooves on Rainbow's shoulder and shook her like a margarita mixer.

Flying up into a sitting position, Rainbow darted her head back in forth, "Huh!? What!? What happened!?"

"That's what I wanted to ask you! But more importantly: Are you alright?" Twilight sat on her haunches, watching the pegasus turn to her, a confused scowl on her face.

"I'm fine, but where'd the human go!? I just had him!" Rainbow groaned.

"Apparently not. I lost track of him just before I heard you slam into that tree."

Rainbow let out an irritated growl, "Okay, when I get my hooves on that human, I'm gonna give him a piece of my mind." I am so not friends with that stupid human.

The two ponies scanned around the immediate area, traded a few words, than stalked off in opposite directions. From his position in the trees above, Rick carefully followed their progress, silently walking along on the branches on all fours like some abomination of a panther-human hybrid being. Whenever a breeze came through the leaves, he timed a gentle jump to an adjacent tree branch, continuing his silent stalking of Purple It.

Twilight trotted through the orchard, eyes shifting positions constantly to try and find the imposter. So far, he had eluded the fastest pegasus she knew, twice, and was somehow immune to magic. Or at least, telekinetic based magic. Whoever, or whatever, this thing was, is proving to be a nuisance.

The breeze rustling through the leaves, caught Twilight's attention, adding more to her frustrations as the extra ambience made it harder to track the tricky human. Twilight's ear's twitched, hearing a creaking in the branches above.

Rick silently cursed to himself, lying prone against his current branch as he misjudged the timing and length of the breeze. It was a tiny misjudgment, something that normal attention spans would dismiss without a second thought. The Purple It was a different story, and he assumed that little creak would probably catch her attention.

Casting her gaze around the trees, Twilight spun in place, slowly, searching for the source of the creak. It had happened a full quarter second after the breeze ended, indicating that the noise was caused by another, external force.

Eyes narrowed, Twilight moved toward where she thought the noise came from. Rick silently shifted his head, watching Purple It get closer to his hiding position. She hadn't looked up yet, so he was still marginally safe, but that was bound to end soon.

Twilight carefully approached the tree trunk, careful to not make too much noise that would alert the human if he was indeed hiding here. Once she was pressed up against the bark, Twilight inhaled silently, tensed her legs, then hopped out, jumping behind the tree, "Gotcha!" To her disappointment, there was a substantial lack of human.

Grunting in exasperation, Twilight turned and gave the tree a vicious kick with her back hooves before trudging forward, a glum expression on her face. Then, something cracked above her. Twilight yelped and looked back, hoping she didn't somehow damage one of Applejack's trees. What actually happened next was startling and highly amusing to anyone who saw it from an outside perspective.

Rick shouted in surprise as the branch he was on suddenly snapped, tipped forward and spilled him onto the ground. He fell forward head first, face planting against the dirt. Rick laid there, groaning in pain, in a Planking position.

"You alright?" He heard the Purple It ask, but not as concerned as she should be.

Slowly, Rick pushed himself onto his knees, rubbing his head where a lump was forming. His nostrils began to drip red and a gash had spawned over the right side of his mouth.

"You know, you could have avoided a lot of this if you just told me who you were," Purple It said sternly. Rick just eyed her out of the corner of his vision, vainly keeping up a lame human's visage.

"Why won't you just tell us? Are you an enemy to Equestria? Is that it?" Purple It's horn began to glow, her face turning serious. Rick jumped at the sight of the glow and scooted backward a step, his back pressing up against the tree. "Because, if that's the case, it's my job as a Princess to detain you and prevent you from causing any harm."

Princess!? Rick visibly blanched at hearing her title, and for some reason, felt an overpowering need to bow. He didn't act on it, but his brain let out a pinch-plan that might just change the game a little. Closing his eyes, Rick bowed his head low, stunning Princess Purple It.

He hoped she would assume he was a friendly if he acknowledged her position. Sure, making a motion like that gave away his mental capacity, but she was already pretty set on him being abnormally intelligent, so it seemed fitting to at least reveal that, while shutting down any beliefs that he was a threat.

However, Fate decided that she was going to be a bitch today. From above, the branch that had broken, snapped again, causing both Twilight and Rick to look up. Everything slowed as the branch came free and began falling…

…Right towards Twilight.

With a split second decision, Rick jumped forward, grasped Princess Purple It and folded his body over hers. The branch continued to fall, Rick tensed, awaiting the heavy and painful thud of the wood to impact his back…but it never came. Rick cracked an eye open, then both eyes flew open; he was pressing his bloodied nose against Princess Purple It's muzzle. He threw himself backward, completely forgetting about the branch when he saw just what kind of compromising position he was in over the Princess.

Both her legs had been wrapped around his waist, which she now properly closed, and her arms were caught over his shoulders. Twilight sat up, blushing bright red and trying to avoid Rick's gaze. She wiped Rick's blood off her muzzle then glanced up. Rick followed her gaze and saw the hulking branch floating in the same purple hue that Purple It's horn was glowing.

Rick looked back down to Purple It and found she was giving him a very incredulous, red-faced stare, "That was highly unnecessary and inefficient, but your thought was appreciated. Don't jump me like that next time."

Now, Rick knew that he shouldn't speak, knew that this was a very touchy situation, knew that Purple It was out to get him, and knew that being an ass was going to get him in trouble. But the way she looked at him, her being a princess, the situation, the lack of gratitude, and the set-up were all too perfect; he just had to take it. He HAD to!

Rick inhaled deeply, shot Twilight a rude look, and… , "Well, Ex-cuuuuuu-se me, Princess!"

"…"

"…"

"…"

"…Hi," Rick said.

Twilight's eyes rolled up into her head, she put on a huge dopey smile and swayed back and forth, muttering something or another about never being tardy, then fell over, twitching periodically.

Rick stared at her, making sure she was fine for the moment before getting up and glancing about in concern. Should I hide the body? Were there any witnesses? Should I even care? The answer to all that: NNoope!

In a puff of dust, kicked up from his feet, Rick darted off, heading deeper into the orchard. His senses remained on high alert for the blue, flying demon that wanted him for some disturbing reason, but he didn't hear her anywhere nearby.

Rainbow trotted around the orchard, ears swiveling back and forth, hoping to catch the human sometime soon. At first, the chasing was pretty fun, but seeing as how the human kept dodging her, outsmarting her, and just managing to stay a tad faster than her every step of the way, she grew very frustrated and irritated.

Somewhere in the orchard, from back where she left Twilight behind, she heard the sound of wood breaking, and a shout. It wasn't Twilight's shout, though, it sounded like a stallion's, so maybe it was the human's? Rainbow grinned, thinking that Twilight actually got the human.

Letting out a few chuckles of satisfaction, Rainbow turned around and began heading back to Twilight, "Gotta give the Egghead credit; she sure can pull through at the best times."

For the whole trot back, Rainbow smiled, running through multiple scenarios of her rubbing the human's capture in his face. She was going to maybe keep bouncing on him, telling him that she'll stop if he says so, then ask to talk about just how exactly he wound up caught by Twilight. Then maybe she'd go into a spiel about just how un-athletic Twilight is and out of anypony to catch him, she was the one to do it.

Rainbow faltered in her steps, Okay, maybe I wouldn't out Twilight about that. That's a cornhole thing to do. But I still gotta make him feel bad somehow. She continued on, thinking of more crazy things.

Once Rainbow had finally decided on how just to do that, which was hogtying him, strapping him inside a wagon, and flying around with him in tow while she made him bounce of everything to mimic how he made her do, she came across Twilight's prostrate form.

"Twilight!" Rainbow cried out and ran to her. There was a huge branch lying right next to her, "Oh, you are in for some serious hurt now, bastard," Rainbow growled, assuming another conclusion about the branch's position relative to Twilight's, "Hurting me with outmaneuvering is one thing, but to bash one of my best friends in the skull with a bucking club is another thing."

After her promise for revenge, Rainbow put her hooves on Twilight, gently rocking her, "Twilight? Come on, time to get up."

Twilight groaned and twitched, eyes fluttering open, "Rainbow? What hap—Oh, my head!" Twilight winced and put a hoof to the side of her head.

"Take it easy, Twilight, that stupid human bashed your head in with a tree branch," Rainbow growled in disgust.

"He did what?" Twilight gasped, her memory of the past events completely abandoning her, "Sheesh, I told you he was hazardous, Rainbow."

"Yeah, yeah, I know that now. Listen, you just chill out right here, and I'm gonna run that bucker down," Rainbow turned around and spread her wings, ready to take off before Twilight called out to her, "Please be careful."

Rainbow shot her a grin over her shoulder and took off, leaving behind a rainbow trail blazer in her path.

Tactically swapping trees, Rick darted in and out, keeping to the shadows and remaining under the thickest branches, hoping that Rainbow, if she decided to take to the skies, wouldn't see him. However, regarding the way Rick's luck had been playing out the entirety of the time he's been in this Planet of the Horses world, he would not be the slightest bit surprised if she did pop outta nowhere to capture him.

After another Swat Switch between trees, Rick heard something whistle overhead at an alarming speed. The trees rustled in its wake, whatever caused it, and leaves fluttered to the ground, knocked free from their branches.

Rick stopped his movements, listening to the feathery flaps fading into the distance. He couldn't discern who they belonged to, but it didn't really matter since all airborne creatures he was currently acquainted with were marginally hostile. When it seemed like they were getting ready to completely fade away into the distance, he heard the wings flap once, then the sound came back, a little skewed to their original path over Rick's head.

Whoever is up there is just zig-zagging. It has to be Rainbow then; Princess Purple It is more intelligent about her controlled search patterns, Rick thought to himself, listening to the wings fade away again, flap once, then grow stronger as Rainbow turned about in the air.

Waiting for one more pass, Rick darted out from the trees again, timing his motions for the apexes of Rainbow's u-turns. Once more, his movements became regular, and he was making substantial progress through the orchard.

Twenty minutes passed by before Rick was forced to stop. "You reckon she's lookin' for us?"

"Nope." A female voice spoke first, answered by a very deep male's, both of which with a southern drawl.

"Wonder what she's doin' then. Should I ask her?"

"Eeyup."

"If you say so, Big Mac." Rick turned around one more tree and saw the owners of the voices. There was an orange pony, unarmed of either wing or horn, standing beside a much larger red pony who was just as unarmed.

Rick had to stifle a laugh as he saw the orange pony's attire; atop her head was a brown Stetson hat and her mane and tail were tied off in ribbons at their ends. Now we have Cowboy ponies working on a farm, este mundo es demasiado! The other pony had a harness around his neck, but at least that was to be expected on a farm hor—er, pony.

"Rainbow Dash!" the orange cowpoke called out.

Rick counted the seconds before he heard the flapping of wings zero in on their positions and the clops of hooves hitting the ground, "Hey, Applejack, what's up?"

Applejack, huh? Wonder if this world even has that kinda hard liquor in it, Rick thought.

"Just a might curious as to why you're zippin' about my trees, is all," Applejack explained.

"I'm looking for a human. He's a bit dangerous so me and Twilight—"

"Twilight and I," Big Mac interjected. Rainbow shot him a confused glance before continuing, "Twilight and I have been trying to capture him, but he's pretty tricky."

"How's he dangerous? Humans don't typically attack outta the blue, RD. Trust me; since I breed 'em, I would know." Applejack said.

Breed Humans? What the fu—"Trust me, AJ, this human already made me slam into a couple of things—"

"You do that on a regular basis already," Applejack sneered earning her a glare from Rainbow. "As I was saying; I've slammed into a couple things and he beat Twilight over the head with a tree branch."

"He what now!?" Uh oh, she sounds pissed.

"Ya heard me, and that's why we're trying to catch him!"

"Aw, hay no! Ain't no good-for-nothin' human gonna beat up on my friends, right Big Mac?"

"Nope," Uh oh, he definitely sounds pissed. Maybe this isn't a very friendly place for a human to be after all.

During his mental statement, the trio of ponies dashed off, heading back into the orchard. For the moment, Rick was safe, but right now, he should probably get out of this damned forest of apple trees. Acting on that plan, Rick sprinted away in the opposite direction the ponies headed, minimalizing his mental mapping in order to focus on his hearing should the man-hunters suddenly near his position.

Rick ran a good while before he came across yet another surprise development. Now, seeing as how he was not at all familiar with this world, he really shouldn't be surprised so easily, seeing as everything should just be accepted as new and unexplored. But what made this surprising was that it was neither a new thing to him, or unfamiliar.

Amongst a small clearing of trees, there was a lone tree, harboring within it, a tree house.

Advancing carefully and stealth-fully, Rick made his way to the tree house, ears alert for any sound above him and in the tree house. There was a slight shuffle coming from the tree house, so Rick decided to just leave it be and turned around.

"Dagnabbit, I hope Applejack comes around soon," a little girl's voice came from the house.

Rick paused, noting the familiar southern drawl, and assumed it was Applejack's sister in the house.

"Hopefully. My head's starting to hurt from being upside down for so long," another girl's voice murmured.

Upside down? "Girls, I'm not feeling so good," a third voice announced, also a little girl's.

"Scootaloo? What's wrong," the southern drawl.

There wasn't a response.

"Scootaloo!?" the other voice, not Scootaloo's, asked, concern heavy in her voice.

Rick had a feeling of dread begin to settle over him, "Applebloom! Scootaloo's not opening her eyes!"

Rick jumped up and scampered to the tree peering through a small window in the side of the house, concerned for this Scootaloo. Inside the tree was a complete mess! Scattered furniture and wrappings of food and candy, mixed along with discarded jars and plastic bags. There was also a strange pink substance splattered everywhere, a concentrated wad in the center of the floor, presumably from the origin of the pink-splosion.

What had most caught Rick's eyes, was a trio of tiny ponies, stuck to the roof, each at different angles. A yellow one with a bright red bow in her mane, stuck belly-up, a white unicorn with a two-toned puple/pink mane, haunches firmly stuck against the roof, her head hanging toward the ground. And finally, a sight that caused Rick's eyes to widen in horror, was an orange, purple-maned pegasus. She was twisted and unable to move, her left foreleg crossed under her chin, probably pressed against her throat. Her barrel was glued to the roof on her right side whereas her head was glued on the left.

Forsaking his lame human image, Rick charged around to the other side of the tree house, grabbed the door knob leading within, and practically ripped the door from its hinges.

The two conscious fillies turned to Rick, eyes wide in surprise and mouths open. Up until the human's strange entrance, the girls were trying desperately to free themselves and help their friend. The gum that they had tried to make not giving up on its hold over them.

Knowing that time was extremely precious, Rick carefully navigated the pink covered floor as quickly as he could, avoiding the substance for fear of getting stuck and losing the few seconds he had to save the endangered foal.

"Please, somepony help!" the white unicorn began screaming desperately. Rick didn't know if she was scared of him, or simply pleading for additional assistance, preferably from pony origins.

Once he finally reached the orange filly, he gently grasped her leg that was choking her, and tugged slowly. As he feared, more of the sticky substance was adhering the leg to her throat. All he could hope to do was relieve the pressure until he could properly extract her.

As gently as he could, Rick pulled on the filly, trying to see where she was mostly stuck. The other two fillies had quieted down and watched the human in confusion, noting that his movements were way too deliberate to be a normal human. After a series of gentle pulls while holding the leg off the filly's throat, Rick found that she was only stuck by her flank and shoulder.

Knowing that he couldn't get the stuff off the filly, he instead switched his attentions to the portion stuck to the ceiling itself. Quickly contemplating his next move, Rick let the leg fall back to its previous position and quickly put his hands to the two spots where the gum stuck to the ceiling and tugged. His tugging, this time, was hard and short, ripping the gum off the ceiling as quick as possible. After only a few seconds, the filly came free, no longer in danger of suffocating, but still unconscious.

"Mister?" the yellow filly asked tentatively.

"Is she alright?" the white filly asked, almost in a whimper.

Rick looked over the orange filly, seeing her breathing deepen back to where it should be. Internally he sighed with relief, glad that he got to her just in the knick of time.

After he was sure she would be alright alone, Rick turned to the other two, carefully stepping closer to them. They both tensed as he got closer, fear very apparent on their faces, "You're not gonna hurt us, are you?" the white unicorn asked.

Rick shook his head before even realizing what he just did. The two fillies gasped, Rick cursed under his breath before just saying fuck the police and spoke, "You cannot tell anypony!" He figured that him using their word would stick better than his native word would.

The fillies gasped again before shaking their heads vigorously, "We won't; CMC Honor!"

With a firm nod, Rick proceeded to pull the other two free of their bonds. The one called Applebloom was the trickiest as she managed to get the entirety of her underside covered in gum. The white filly, was just a simple tug free from her pink bondage… without the sexual connotation that phrase usually implies.

…fucking perverts.

"How the hell did you three manage to do this?" Rick grunted, barely able to work Applebloom's upper portion of her body free.

"Well, we were only trying to make some gum to get our Candy Making Cutie Marks, but I think we added to much yeast," the white one explained.

Rick stopped his ministrations, slowly turning his head over to stare at the nervously smiling filly, "Why would you put yeast in gum?"

She just shrugged in response.

Rick sighed then turned back to Applebloom. "What's your name, mister?"

"Ricardo Johnson. And you're Applebloom?" Rick answered, semi-distracted by his current attentions.

"Eeyup! And that there is Sweetie Belle," Applebloom pointed at the white filly who meekly waved, "and that there sleepy head is Scootaloo… Um, she will be okay, right?"

"She should be; there's no more pressure on her windpipe, but she might have a sore shoulder for a while," Rick pulled more of Applebloom's body free, but stopped when she yelped in pain.

"My fur's gonna look funny after this, ain't it?" Applebloom sighed after she saw a slightly thin patch of fur over her belly.

Rick laughed at her, "I think you're all gonna look funny, seeing as how you have gum stuck all over. Miraculously," Rick scanned over the fillies, "None of you got that gunk in your manes. So at least you won't have to worry about the most important hair getting mucked up."

"Small victory," Sweetie Belle grumbled, raising her foreleg to watch a piece of gum stuck within her fur.

Rick turned to offer his condolences when Scootaloo snorted and sat up, eyes closed but with her leg still stuck awkwardly across her neck. "I'm awake, dad, I just dozed off for a few…," Scootaloo yawned loudly, her jaw cracking with the intensity, before she cracked her eyes open blearily.

For several long seconds, Scootaloo just scanned the strange scene before her. There was a human, frozen in place, watching her with a curious stare, Applebloom in his hands, covered in pink stuff. At the human's feet was Sweetie Belle, idly staring at her while chewing some of the pink stuff off her arm. She remembered they were in their clubhouse, trying to make their own bubble gum, when Sweetie Belle put something in it and a huge bubble suddenly blew out of the pot they were mixing it in.

Scootaloo sat there, watching the human watching her, then turned to Sweetie Belle, then finally to Applebloom, "Yeah," Scootaloo yawned again, "Wake me when everything goes back to normal," Then Scootaloo promptly laid back down and dozed off…

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