• Published 20th Jan 2015
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The Education of Applejack and Big Macintosh - Greatmewtwo



Applejack and Big Macintosh struggle with whether they can handle being in each other's horseshoes

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The Education Part

THE EDUCATION OF APPLEJACK AND HER BROTHER By The Great Mewtwo

The golden-furred Applejack and reddened Big Macintosh trotted lightly as they were heading for school in neighboring Ponyville. Applejack, being the younger of the two, would go off with her kindergarten group where they would read books, learn about numbers, and play with some toys, while Big Macintosh, being a few years older, would learn about manipulations of those said numbers, the antiquity of Ponyville proper, and the many games ponies play in professional sport. This day, however, the two ponies of Sweet Apple Acres would find themselves questioning where they were in their lives.

“Big Macintosh?” asked the younger Applejack.

“Eeyup?” replied Big Mac.

“It must be really fun in your class, huh? You guys get to play sports and play with all kinds of weird glasses and tubes.”

“Eeyup. Why?”

“Because I want to be where you are, playing with all that fancy stuff and reading those fancy books.”

“Fancy books? You don’t want to see those. Those are for big kids, unlike you. You still have a little bit more hair to grow and a few inches, too.”

“What are you talking about? I am a big girl. I use the bathroom and everything.”

“You’ve only been doing that all of a few years.”

As the trotting went along, they made it to the schoolhouse, but they were still a bit torn over who had it worse. They found themselves arguing as their hooves sustained a forwardly movement across the hall.

“In kindergarten, we can’t play with the toys, except on the end of the week. I can’t handle it,” griped Applejack.

“Well,” said Big Mac, “I have to multiply really big and weird numbers, many times beyond ten.”

“Well, I can do all that stuff and then some!”

“You really think so?”

“Yeah?”

“Well, good luck with that,” Big Mac said, “but don’t come cryin’ ta me when you find out that it’s too hard.”

“Well, I’d rather deal with that,” Applejack snapped, “I ain’t some filly who’s got to be corralled all the time.”

Right as the dispute turned into a fight, a teacher, Miss Sunnydaze, immobilized the both of them in the hallway.

“Big Macintosh and Applejack, what is the meaning of this?” she stormed.

Big Macintosh and Applejack found themselves lost for words.

“Well, if there’s nothing going on between you two, you will go on with your days.”

“We’re sorry,” the filly and colt replied respectively.

“Now get your flat flanks to class.”

With that, Big Macintosh put his benediction on Applejack’s day as they both parted; her class would be sunnier, while his class was much more controlled and stabilized, as would be typical of the modern classroom.

Naturally, the day went by and the two of them found their niches in class. Applejack practiced her alphabet and her number practice with blocks and paint, not a far cry from her days when Big Macintosh would entertain her with apples. She, the peach-colored earth pony, Miss Molasses, and the other twelve in her class would marvel at the alphabet chart near the chalkboard, the large clock facing the south wall with numbers and white-box gears, and the large pictures of Princess Celestia and Luna prancing in a spirited manner. Carpet lined the classroom with a large colorful play rug on the west side that depicted the joy and innocence that is love and friendship within an earth pony sharing his apples with a unicorn and a Pegasus. Miss Molasses herself had the attention of the class as she went on with her counting lesson.

“Okay, class,” said Miss Molasses cheerily, “Now how many candles do we have here?”

Applejack quickly raised her hoof to answer the inquiry posed before them.

“We have 3 candles, Miss Molasses,” said Applejack enthusiastically.

“That’s right. We have three now, but what if I add two more, what would we have then?”

“Uh, five?”

“Exactly. We had three candles in our head, and then we added two to get five.”

As Miss Molasses moved to collect her candles, she went on to further explain. “That, kids, is how we add and subtract numbers.”

The clock was starting to reach the replication of noon-time, right as everyone in her classroom was starting to question their hunger.

“Okay, gang,” commanded Miss Molasses, “It’s time for lunch. Since Applejack did a good job at counting today, she’ll lead the lunch line.”

It was not uncommon that the others would get frustrated at not being nominated to be the line leader, let alone the door holder, but

Applejack in all her freckled glory was the first to the door. The typical lunch that incorporated hay, a glass of water, and some apples made

its way into their small classroom by way of a viridian-colored stallion and his loaded dray, which naturally lacked wheels for lack of open space.

Meanwhile, Big Macintosh himself struggled with his science lesson about what Frazzits were and how insects shed their exoskeletons. Applejack would watch films about the joy and fun of flowers and read along with Miss Molasses while Big Macintosh learned about complex multiplication concerning decimals. Applejack, however, only cared about the toys she would get to play with as the day came to a close, while Big Macintosh only saw the end of the school day as the light at the end of a tunnel that included a literature test encompassing more censored parts of the Starswirlian legend. Fast as the clock struck noon for the class as well, Big Macintosh was still a bit hungry, but had to still wait as their said lunch would not be delivered for at least another forty-five minutes. Until such time had come, he had to deal with the constant badgering of reading comprehension of otherwise useless fairy tales.

“Big Macintosh,” called a viridian-colored unicorn, Miss Sharpenstone, “Can you tell us all what Starswirl intended when he was saying that Catrina’s witchweed was slowly claiming her brain?”

“He meant that…uh…” Big Macintosh hesitated.

“Big Macintosh, have you been reading your texts or dozing off and thinking about Cheerilee over there?”

“NOPE!”

“The heck you weren’t. Well, since you seem to not care about what Starswirl the Bearded did for your ungrateful flank, maybe some extra classwork will help you understand over the weekend.”

“But that’s not even—“

“I don’t care. Now, if you excuse me, we have a lesson plan to teach.”

Miss Sharpenstone moved back to her desk, her horn glowing blue as she shuffled old assignments and documentation destined for pulping at year’s end, only to have another mare, Miss Molasses, interrupt classes for otherwise urgent matters. Frustrated by the conviction of apathy by Miss Sharpenstone, Big Macintosh wondered if there could be any semblance of hope to come of his day. At any rate, he slumped his head downward, mortified by his inattentiveness in class at an otherwise inopportune moment.

“Big Macintosh,” called Miss Sharpenstone again, “we need you for a moment.”

With that, he stepped away from his desk and followed the two mares outside the room.

“Big Macintosh,” said Miss Molasses, “it says here that you were supposed to do your last day of kindergarten.”

“I know it seems a bit weird for us to come after you for this, after so long,” said Miss Sharpenstone, “but if you—“

“I accept,” Big Macintosh proclaimed cheerfully. At that point, it was not like his day could get much worse for his comprehension.

“Are you ready, Big Mac?” Miss Molasses asked.

“Eeyup.”

With all labors completed, Miss Sharpenstone went back to tend to her class at her larger desk with the mountains of paper before her, though not without her laughing.

“I didn’t even have to bribe him with throwing out the extra homework,” she thought.

Big Macintosh and Miss Molasses went on to the other classroom for the kindergarteners, who had just been finishing their lunch. He did not question the fact that there were neither students’ desks nor charts of life cycles and moon phases. Instead, he took a small space for himself on the large polychromatic area rug before him and sat down. Around him was the said classroom that seemed to be built for smaller fillies. He would be served with one of the extra lunch trays that were left over from an absent student, albeit with some extra rations for who he was.

“Okay, class. Today, we have someone who’s going to be helping us today,” said Miss Molasses, “his name is Mr. Macintosh. Say ‘Hi’ to Mr. Mac, class.”

“Wait a second,” the young Pinkie Pie whispered to Applejack, “Isn’t that your big brother?”

“Eeyup.” said the dejected Applejack.

Playing into the greeting, the two fillies joined the rest of the class in welcoming Big Macintosh into the class.

“Good afternoon, Mr. Mac,” the class chanted.

Big Macintosh would eventually be peppered with all sorts of questions that could otherwise be answered in a Boolean fashion.

“Do they make you multiply big numbers?” One filly asked.

“Do they make you learn really big words?” Another badgered.

“Have you ever made something with paint?” A third one pressed.

At least three “Eeyups” would accompany every other “nope” as they asked him about what life is like in later grades.

“I think that’s enough questions for our colt of the day, everypony,” interjected Miss Molasses, “It’s history time. Big Macintosh, if you can get to that gramophone over there?”

Big Macintosh was mildly confused over the look and feel that was a phonograph, a spindle with an arm and a bell to augment the vibrations for the rest to hear. However, nudges from an oriented Applejack and some of his own logic did lead him to the record player in question, aptly labeled ‘record player,’ sitting on a table kissed by the afternoon sun, while Miss Molasses picked out an old record from her massive library of recorded books, one specifically titled The Winter Wrap-Up. He and Miss Molasses met near the rug where the record was played. Its voices included that of a mare named Minty, who elucidated that Spring was always a time for ponies to start again, and that all the ponies had a job to do, whether it be corralling other animals out of hibernation or clearing up the cloudy skies left over from the snowy season. Big Macintosh, however, didn’t seem to mind this, as his mind was mildly preoccupied with some mint-scented paste, glitter, and small pebbles.

“Big Macintosh,” Miss Molasses called, “can you bring the celeste over here as well while you’re back there and pick up the record player?”

“Eeyup,” Big Mac replied.

The celeste resembled a rather miniature piano, not much removed from the toy pianos that the fillies and colts would have else played with in a past year.

“Now, for our music lesson,” Miss Molasses chimed, “Big Macintosh will sing along with the music.”

Applejack could not help but laugh at the fact that Big Macintosh was in class with her, but she could not laugh knowing that he passively had a hand in her education. The celeste chimed with a childish wonder while the kindergarteners sang along with Big Macintosh as he sang an otherwise forgettable folk tune. He was not without his noticing that some of the kindergarteners were laughing with him while others, such as Applejack herself, would occasionally laugh at him. It was enough to depress him a bit, but it was worthless when he considered that he may have averted new crises.

“If I could stay young forever, act the part and all,” thought Big Mac, “perhaps this life wouldn’t be so hard. I could do these kinds of things all day and no one would ever have to ask me for anyth—“

Fast as the idea came to him, screams could be heard from where Applejack was near the clock. Between the poorly-installed supports giving way and seeing that large clock slowly inching down toward her, Big Mac broke out of his artificial happiness and rushed to her rescue. He threw himself toward the clock and caught it before it could strike her in the head. As the clock weighed on his otherwise fragile body, he wavered about all the children who would have otherwise been laughing at him for what he was doing. Big Macintosh saw to it that she got to safety and set it down.

“Thanks a lot, big brother,” Applejack said in a great appreciation for him as she kissed him on the cheek. “I’m also sorry for saying what I said to you today.”

Many of the others gagged and expressed disgust at the idea of a boy kissing a girl. However, there was little time for him to respond, as the more infinitely harmful potential of a falling failed wooden joist caused Big Mac to scream.

“Watch out,” he screamed as he rushed to get several other kindergarteners away from the potential danger. He leapt and got them away from the joists path, despite a few bruises on his legs from the skid along with some soreness.

“That’s an amazing big brother you have there, Applejack. I’m impressed,” Miss Molasses added as the rest of the class cheered.

Big Macintosh did what he had to do to protect his sister, but that, of course would not go unnoticed by the incoming Miss Sharpenstone.

“Miss Sharpenstone, what a surprise,” Miss Molasses hailed.

“Miss Molasses, I know that this is a bad time when you’re about to release, but Big Mac has to do his test today. Do you mind if I take him again?”

“I know you need him, but he was such a help to me today, what between music and history time, plus he was just about to help us fix the clock that fell today.”

“Really?”

“If it’s alright with you, Big Macintosh, you can go with Miss Sharpenstone again.”

Big Macintosh looked at the fillies and colts he helped to shape and save from bodily harm, if only for a day, and a dejected “eeyup” came from his mouth.

“Okay,” said Miss Sharpenstone, “If you want, you can come back and help them fix up the room.”

Walking back to his own classroom, Big Macintosh concentrated on his very test. His questions seemingly easy enough for where he was, he went through in a matter of minutes; his test, focused on the ideas of physics and mathematics, seemed quite daunting, but then he remembered Applejack and her classmates and the life he almost dreamt about where no one would ever ask him for anything.

“I can do this,” he thought, “No one asked me for what happened today, but I can certainly do it tomorrow.”

With that in his mind, Big Macintosh handed in his pulp early and went off into the kindergarten once again to help with the repairs. His knowledge of construction from his hours at the barn, together with applications of math and measurement, helped Miss Molasses repair the roof and the clock that had fallen. The next thing he knew, it was time for Applejack to leave class for the day. She followed Big Mac back to his class to accompany him while he waited for the end of the day for himself.

“Mr. Macintosh,” Miss Sharpenstone called from her desk, “is this your test?”

“Eeyup,” replied Big Macintosh conventionally.

A glowing blue aura surrounded a paper with his hoof prints on it: his test with only two missed items of twenty.

“Great job. You see what you can do when you focus a bit more? Like what you and Applejack did in the classroom today?”

“Eeyup.”

“I’m sorry I still have to make you do the extra work this weekend, but please, keep up the good work.”

Big Macintosh, seeing what he saw, did not readily mind the extra work. Far as anyone knew, he just had to read a bit more about Starswirl the Bearded and the parable on Catrina. It was safe to assume that Applejack didn’t have it as easy as it stereotypically would.

“You know, big brother,” said Applejack, “maybe I’m not ready to see what you do.”

“Nope,” he quipped, “You’re more than ready. I’m surprised that you didn’t laugh at me in your classroom.”

Applejack and Big Macintosh laughed as the final bell reverberated from the schoolhouse. Miss Molasses and the kindergarten class, its room now under more professional upkeeps, stopped the two of them to say thanks to Big Macintosh and Applejack for everything today. The education of Applejack and Big Macintosh had once again, in one of those rare instances, extended beyond their classroom. Family had brought out some things within them that would have otherwise been lost.

Author's Note:

There are some past generation references in this piece, but this was intended to take place in the somewhat distant past.

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