• Published 30th Jul 2018
  • 3,014 Views, 356 Comments

Family Tree - miss-cyan

Getting cryptic notes from dead relatives is never a good thing. This was no exception. What are you supposed to do when someone wants you to solve a mystery when there's something out in the woods? That turns out to be the least of my problems.

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The Start

“OH NO!” I heard who I assumed to be the pink one gasp, the stuff was starting to drip over my eyes. “I’m so sooooo sorry, pony I’ve never met before! I thought you were a friend of mine!”

“…This is how you treat your friends?” I mumbled, trying to shake off some of it but It was too thick. The ponies who had stopped laughing were quietly shuffling off, muttering to one another. Good riddance.

“No no no. See, the members of the Ponyville Musician’s Guild have started pulling pranks on me and some of my other friends, I call us “The Ponyville Pranksters”, so we decided to do a friendly prank war! One whole week of whoopee cushions, hoof buzzers and…uh…aerial cake batter splatter attacks…oops.”

“Hm.” I was half-listening, wondering to myself if this stuff would stain my jacket.

“And…You have a reeeeeaaallly similar mane and coat color to Noteworthy, he’s one of the Guild ponies, but he’s a stallion, obviously! Not that you look like a stallion! It’s just from so high up I couldn’t tell the difference!” She rambled on, bouncing around to get face to face with me. “I’m super-duper sorry! Honest I am!”

My scowl did not want to leave just yet. I was already stressed out and there was still stuff to do.

“Look. I just want to get this stuff off me and get back to my business, alright?” I sighed. “You got a hose or something around here? Give me a quick rinse?”

“Oh yeah! There’s a hose around back at Sugarcube Corner! Buuuut…I…uh…made this batch to be super thick and sticky…You’re gonna need a reeeeeeally really good bath.”

“Great…” I huffed, plopping down in the dirt, somehow even more emotionally exhausted. “I…I can’t walk all the way back like this…” I dreaded the thought of trying to get through that forest while this stuff dripping everywhere, dirt stuck to me just everywhere…

“I could take you to the spa! They can fix you up really nice!” she beamed, looking at me hopefully.

A spa? A bunch of ponies touching me and shuffling me around…Probably want to take off my jacket.

“Hard pass.” I muttered. I’d only been here maybe an hour, I wasn’t going to out myself just yet, if those pictures were a big deal.

“Oh…uh, okay then. You could take a bath at my place! I’ve got a good shampoo that works super good on baking stuff when it gets in my mane.”

“You’re just gonna let some random stranger…you don’t even know…take a bath in your house?” I gave her a weird look. “You’re kidding.”

“Noperino! I’m totally serious!” she did her best at not looking like a looney. It didn’t last long though. “Plus, it’s not technically my house, I just have a room upstairs.”

I doubted I’d be able to even use a hose by myself, and the thought of trekking back home through the forest running through some more woods and the backyard and into the house, tracking cake batter the whole way? Not terribly appealing.

“I really hate to turn down such a…generous offer.” I sighed flatly, bewildered by both my good and bad luck. “Lead the way.”

And she did. She bounced. The whole way. It wasn’t far but more ponies who hadn’t been there for my original shaming were snickering, until the pink one made “cut it out” type gestures at them until they stopped. I kept my eyes to the ground through most of it, not wanting to lose my head again.

She stopped me at the door of some architectural monstrosity straight out of Hansel and Gretel. I just sighed.

Don’t even let it get to you. This place is just…weird. Leave it at that.

“Okay, I’m gonna go in and put down something for you to walk on until we get upstairs. Don’t you go nowhere!” she smiled, rushing inside and closing the door behind her.

There was some commotion inside, before a very obvious stage whisper could be heard all the way outside.

Okay everypony…Listen. There’s a pony about to walk in…and she’s covered in cake batter!”

There were some laughs at that.

Shhhh! I know, I know it’s really funny but please…pretty please with sprinkles on top…please don’t laugh at her! She’s veeeerrrrrryyyy SEN-SI-TIVE.”

“I’m gonna kill her.”

The door flew open and she was smiling wide, gesturing to the inside. There was a long roll of wax paper leading to a stairway off to the side like the oh-so glamourous red carpet they rolled out just for my public humiliation.

“Well, come on in, silly!” she giggled.

“Don’t call me that.”


I walked past a number of ponies eating and waiting in line in what looked like a bakery. Some of them were very obviously averting their gazes. One even had a newspaper up and seemed very interested in an article, I’m sure. A blue one with honest-to-god rainbow hair was sitting at a table in the corner, visibly shaking from trying not to laugh.

“Right this way!” she rolled up the wax paper I’d already stepped on behind me. I wasn’t leaving much batter behind anymore but the sticky hooves had picked up a lot of dirt. The roll extended up the stairs too and I tried my best not to stumble.

“Now you wait juuussst a teency bit!” she bounced away to what I could only hope was the bathroom. I heard water and felt a little more relaxed when steam started rolling from the doorway. I was eager to get clean and back to my business. Even with all this fuss and muss I still felt an undercurrent of determination. It was almost refreshing. If this kind of thing didn’t send me packing then I hoped I had the guts to see this through as far as I could.

“It’s all filled up!” she cheered, sliding up next to me. “Ooh! Do you want me to wash your jacket for you too?”

I snuck a peek at my backside. The batter had gotten most everywhere after the walk here, including enough to cover my “secret”. I could get full-horse naked and not blow my cover, and the privacy of the tub was a plus too.

“Just be careful with it.” I sighed, shrugging out of it. I watched her hooves carefully, wondering how she could grab so easily. “It’s my favorite.”

“No problem…uh…Oh! Silly me, I’m drawing you a bath already and I never even got your name! If Mr. and Mrs. Cake ask, I knew it the whole time, m’kay?”

“Sure, whatever. I’m Cornflower Blue.”

She gasped really loudly; I wouldn’t have been surprised if they heard it all the way downstairs.

“Whaaaaaaaat a ca-winky-dink!” she giggled, bouncing in a circle around me, my jacket flopping cake batter in a ring around the both of us. “I’m a color too! My name’s Pinkie Pie!”

“Outstanding.” I deadpanned. “Can I get in the tub?”

“Sure as sunshine!” she followed me in, I was hoping she’d be out of my hair soon.

“So, here’s that shampoo I was telling you about! And here’s my loofa, my scrub brush, my rubber duckie, my extra-bubbly bubble bath, my other rubber duckie, aaaaaaand my fluffiest towels! You just give me a shout if you need anything, ‘kay Corny?”

“Please don’t call me that.” I knocked the loofa into the tub, and stuck the tip of my hoof in to check the temperature.

“Okay! Um…What do your friends call you? Flower? CB? Lil’ B? Corncob? Cornucopia? Rhythm and Blues? Bluebell? Blue-”

Stop. Just…Blue. Is fine, I guess. If you have to call me something. I just want to wash up, get clean and get back to my day.”

“Sure thing! I’ll get to washing this, you just have a nice, relaxing bath that’ll sooooothe your nerves and make you want to forgive your pal Pinkie.”

I hummed at her words, inching into the hot water and already feeling better. She stepped out of the room and I reluctantly used my teeth to pull the curtain surrounding the tub closed. I tipped some of the open bubble bath between my hooves as carefully as I could into the water, hoping it would add some much needed cover.

Pinkie Pie thought about her temporary bath guest. She felt really bad about what had gone down with the prank misfire. She always prided herself on not pranking ponies who were super-sensitive like her best pal Fluttershy. She got the feeling deep down in her guts that Bluey had been teased as a foal like Fluttershy had, but instead of shying away like the pegasus, she had learned how to seem tough. But Pinkie saw through that grouchy act back there in the street. Bluey had been mad, but also very sad. Smad.

She was going to make up for her mistake, but she was going to play it cool. Things had worked out in the end with Cranky, but she didn’t want to push and push and push Bluey until it was too late to do right by her. Cool, cool as a cucumber, that was her.

“Psst…Gummy! Where are you?” Pinkie whispered, knowing just the way to get the jacket clean. She whipped her head around to find Gummy at the top of the stairs, licking his eyeball.

“Oh good…okay listen Gummy.” She scooped him up and brought him downstairs, setting him on the floor of the laundry room. “I need this cleaned up lickidy-split! I know I can count on you, buddy!”

Gummy, wise beyond his years, showed her his lack of teeth in her favorite smile and plodded over to the jacket. She could always count on him to help clean up.

“Oh, hey! I almost forgot!” Pinkie’s new, hopefully soon-to-be friend called from the other room. “There’s stuff in the pockets, please don’t wash them.”

“No problem!” Pinkie called back. She stuck her hoof inside and fished around for Blue’s stuff. There was a coin purse and an old photo in a plastic sleeve like from an album. It was old and crinkled around the edges. A class picture, much like the ones she’d seen hanging in the entryway of Ponyville’s schoolhouse. “Aww! Look at all the happy little smiles! Do you know any of them?”

“Nope.” Blue called from the tub, the sound of gently splashing water echoing in the bathroom. “No clue about any of them.”

Pinkie flipped the photo over, finding some writing in very faded ink.

“Hmm...the back says “Sugar and Silver’s…first picture day.” Hm, I wonder which ones they are?”

The bathroom got super quiet, save for the quiet plinking of water into the tub.

“Yeah, don’t know which is which either.” Bluey sighed. “I was gonna go to the schoolhouse in the picture today to see if I could find out who they are but I got…held up. But gosh, I don't even know where the the schoolhouse even is…”

“Ooh! Ooh, I can help you with that!” Pinkie called, pronking about, eager to be helpful. This was it! The thing! The thing she could do to make her smile!

“You can?” Bluey gasped. “Gosh Pinkie, I think if you did that, why...I would forgive the whole “aerial cake batter splatter attack” thing and we’d be even.”

Pinkie was so happy and her heart was as light as a feather, she zipped on over to the tub, the curtain flew open with her ringing declaration.


Bluey yelped and lightning quick, she lobbed one of the rubber duckies at her head. It bounced off Pinkie’s face with an adorable squeaky quack and she didn’t even flinch.

“Did ya mean it, Bluey?”


My jacket was clean and dry surprisingly quickly, and I didn’t really care how. I changed in privacy, this time very clumsily trying out the whole “grabbing things with hooves” thing I had done somehow with the rubber duck (I couldn't even begin to understand how that worked...) and eventually managed to slip it on much easier than earlier. I made a mental note to practice holding onto things at home. I felt a thousand times more comfortable than I’d been in the tub.

I was still a little flustered about the whole bath thing. In reality I only wanted privacy to keep my little secret but there was some deeply ingrained need for modesty that didn’t go away. At least when I was around other people, or ponies as it were, when not in my own body. Or because this was my body?

Aw, screw it. I decided, clumsily drying my hair with a towel. Don’t think about it. That’s my new motto.

I stepped out of the bathroom, hoping my new hair was like my old and it looked the same brushed as it did not.

“Okay, you ready to go Pinkie?”

“Yep! Just gotta put Gummy down for his nap. He gets so tired after his afternoon snack.”

“Okay, who’s-”

I turned to be face to face with big purple eyes and green scales.

“Bluey, this is Gummy, my pet baby alligator.” She smiled, holding him like a baby. He opened his mouth and let out a squeaky croak, revealing a lack of any razor-sharp teeth. It made me relax a little and, if I was being honest, it was kind of cute.

“Hi…Gummy.” I reached a hoof out and gently patted the top of his head. He turned and looked at me, a teensy bit wall-eyed. He opened his jaws and without warning, snapped them down on the end of my hoof. It didn’t hurt, but it was a very strong “bite” and it sent a little chill up my spine.

“Awww! He likes you!”

Twilight had been pouring over her magical theory books for the better part of a day. Nothing she had read so far related to what she’d seen. Any magic she knew herself would’ve been detectable by her. It looked like a teleportation spell, but it wasn’t. It looked like a summoning enchantment, but it wasn’t…This was something unknown.

She had a few theories on the forest itself, but the most likely one being that the forest had its own natural magic source, keeping it from needing insects and animals to keep it thriving. And any creatures smart enough to feel that natural magic had decided to stay away. As a result, it was likely very magical in its own right. She’d heard of individual magical trees, like Sweet Apple Acres’ Zap Apple trees the Tree of Harmony (which wasn’t a traditional tree but for the sake of the theory she included it), and the magic they contained.

“Could that be it?” she puzzled, writing down her thoughts.

“Could what be it?” Spike asked from atop the shelf ladder.

“I think the natural magic in the forest may have…performed magic of its own. In a way…”

“Is that bad? Is it gonna turn out to be like the Everfree Forest?”

“It should be fine I think…But natural magic is like…like pegasus magic, in a way. Passive magic. It shouldn’t be able to “cast” spells at all. This is all theory until proven otherwise…”

Twilight wasn’t sure about it but a forest with magic, in theory, could summon something in a way that Twilight couldn’t detect. Or…just as likely a theory, it could’ve-

“No, no…impossible.” She muttered to herself, scratching her notes out. “I’m getting ahead of myself. Forests can’t cast magic in the first place. They don’t have conduits-Twilight, you jumped to conclusions! Get it together…”

She stepped back from this particular line of thinking. Trees didn’t have conduits like horns or some magical artifacts. She convinced herself to think of the other problem.

“In any case, there’s no sign of the creature. So far anything we’ve found didn’t relate to it, as far as I could tell. That trail didn’t even show up until after it was spotted.”

There was no choice but to hope it was a one-time spotting. If it was unseen by ponies for this long, it would probably remain unseen. If it did come back and cause trouble, she and her friends would deal with it. But for now, it was just a footnote on this bigger mystery.

She decided to switch her research focus from what magical things she couldn’t detect, to any historical records or mention of the woods in Ponyville’s history to see if anything like this had happened before.

“Spike, we’re going to start a little research project.” She proclaimed, her energy returning to her.

“I’ll start making coffee.” He sighed, climbing down the ladder.

As long as nopony went into those trees for now, there would be one less thing to worry about.

She hoped that the sign she put up would be enough.

Pinkie took me out the back way to avoid any more commotion and she hopped along the dirt road with me in tow. I wondered if the pony ever just walked anywhere.

“This is the same schoolhouse in the picture?” I asked, hoping for a break. “They haven’t like…knocked it down and rebuilt it at any point?”

“Nope! It’s the first school they ever built in Ponyville, and it’s the only school for little colts and fillies they’ve ever had. My friend Applejack told me so, and her family has been here since the town was founded!”

“Cool, and they’ll like…let us in and I can find out more about this photo?”

“Yuh-huh. And class lets out soon! I haven’t heard the bell yet so they must be finishing up and we can ask Ms. Cheerilee, that’s the teacher, if we can come in!”

“Good. I can get some more info on…uh." I was blanking. Pony names were still weird.

“The picture said Sugar and Silver. Two of these must be them!” she started bouncing…backwards to face me as we moved along. “Say Bluey? Why are you looking for the two in the picture?”

“I’m just....” I mulled it over for a second. "Trying to get in contact with them. I've never met them personally, but...they're friends of the family." Hopefully not technically a lie.

“Oh that's terrific!” she laughed. "I hope you get to meet them soon!"

Me too Pinkie Pie.

With a free quiet moment I looked this new pony over. I was used to ponies being all colors now but this had to be the pinkest pony I'd seen so far. I would say her parents didn't try very hard naming her but my hypothetical pony parents apparently did the same thing.

Her hair was full of thick, poofy curls that made mine look tame by comparison, with a tail to match. How do they handle having all that hair? She had big blue eyes and a smile that never seemed to go away. And the pictures on her sides were three balloons, two blue and one yellow.

So her job is...blowing up balloons? No, that seems too specific...

We passed some ponies I think I recognized from before. They saw the two of us and started muttering to each other. I wanted to ignore it, but my default response was to scowl at them, my ears flat against my head. Their eyes went wide and they trotted off in the opposite direction. Pinkie Pie noticed this, of course.

"Bluey, when all those ponies laughed at you, it was with you!" She tried to calm me a little. "Well, you weren't laughing...but they thought you were in on the prank! They weren't trying to be mean."

"You're telling me that every single one of those ponies thought I was in on it? Not one of them laughed because they saw something embarrassing happen to somepony other than them?" I huffed, not totally buying it.

"Well...no, I can't be super duper, one hundred percent sure on that..." she said looking kind of guilty. "But a lot of ponies in town know I don't prank ponies who are sensitive!"

There she goes again with sensitive. I thought, still sore about it. I just don't much care for large groups of people pointing and laughing at me, especially not when I get humiliated.

I gave her a vague nod, if only to move away from the subject. I wasn't really angry with her, it had been an accident after all. But I wasn't about to forgive and forget with those other ones. I wasn't go out of my way to be nasty to ponies (starting now), but if any of them tried to hassle me for it I couldn't promise anything.

The big bell on the steeple of the schoolhouse was ringing away and tiny little ponies were filing out. They were laughing and gathering in their little groups and before they could all get past, a little yellow one with no pictures ran up to Pinkie and looked super-excited to see her.

“Hiya Pinkie Pie!” she cheered in a surprising southern accent. “What’re you doin’ here? Is it Ms. Cheerilee’s birthday?”

“Nah, that’s not for three months, nineteen days, six hours aaaaand…thirteen minutes.” She laughed, saying something that made my head spin. “I’m actually here with my new buddy Bluey!”

Who’s she callin’ her buddy…I grumped on the inside.

“Oh! Well, nice to meetcha Bluey.” She smiled up at me, offering a hoof. I did my best at a hoofshake. “My name’s Apple Bloom. Hm…did Pinkie already throw you a party? You smell like cake.”

I glared at Pinkie and she just put on a sheepish smile, drawing circles in the dirt.

“Nope! I just met her today…I kinda…made a mess of it, so I’m helping her with a thing!”

“A thing?” the smaller pony repeated back.

"She's helping me find some ponies." I started, trying to offer more of an explanation. "They were students here, pretty sure."

“Oh, neat!" Two little voices were calling her name. She looked down the road to see two little ponies waiting impatiently for her, I assumed. "See ya later!” she said awkwardly, trotting off towards them. Pinkie waved at all three of them before we kept on moving. I wasn’t sure what we’d find here but Pinkie was the closest thing I had to a guide. I could at least get her to point me in the right direction when I found out where I needed to go. And read things.

We stepped into the schoolhouse entrance and along the wall leading to the classroom there were several school photos, groups of little ponies in rows from what seemed to be years back. But all in color, none more sepia-toned like mine. And there were different teachers in some of them the older-looking they got. This made me a bit worried. Just how old was this photo? If I found what I was looking for, how old was the human-knowing pony? Hopefully they hadn’t moved out of town. Or worse.

“Hmmm…looks like we’ll have to dig a little deeper.” She zipped off into the classroom and I heard a surprised yelp.

“Oh! Hello Pinkie Pie. Are you dropping off an invitation? Let me think…It’s not…Caramel’s birthday, is it?”

Apple Bloom mentioned something like that too. I thought. So she's a party planner? Geez, how many does she throw that everybody asks her?

“Nope! I’m helping out my friend-oh!” she zipped back over to the doorway and waved me in. I sighed as she waited for me to step in. The pony I assumed to be the teacher was a normal magenta one like Pinkie and me was standing behind a desk. Pinkie waited for me to get all the way to the desk until continuing her thought. “-helping out my friend Cornflower Blue here investigate an old picture she has.” She dug her hoof into my jacket pocket without warning and retrieved the photo. I tried my best to brush off the invasion of my personal space.

“Hello Cornflower Blue, I’m Cheerilee, the teacher here.” she smiled at me. She seemed nice so far. Hopefully she'll find what I'm looking for.

“Nice to meet you, Cheerilee.” I said, smiling politely. “Thanks for your help on this.”

“I’m happy to help a friend of Pinkie Pie’s.” Pinkie giggled at the word friend. “Oh, well this is quite old, we’d have to get the school photo album.” She made her way over to the high shelf on the far wall, standing on a step ladder and grabbing a rather thick book with her teeth. She plopped it onto her desk and flipped through the pages.

“Now let me see…The class size is smaller and that teacher…Oh, would you look at that! The photo you have is a copy of the very first school photo! Miss Bliss’ class, right after the schoolhouse was built, it must have been more than fifty years ago.”

“Fifty years…” I sighed. I was really hoping for a lucky break on this.

“Which ones are Silver and Sugar?” Pinkie asked, more on task than I was.

Cheerilee carefully took the photo from its place in the album and flipped it over. Pinkie dove right into the new info but I just looked, grimacing a little. These squiggles were still foreign to me. But when I saw that Cheerilee was watching the two of us, I promptly pretended to read along.

“Pictured: Periwinkle, Sassafrass…Ah-ha! Here!” she flipped it over again. “It says they’re Sugar Maple and Silver Maple!” she pointed to two little girl ponies in the front row. A normal one, and the only unicorn in the class.

These are the two I’m looking for.

Pinkie and I thanked Cheerilee for her time and went back outside. I was glad I at least had some full names to work off of, but I was feeling a little tired. I did a lot more today than I had planned. We reached the end of the dirt road outside the schoolhouse when I noticed that for the first time since I’d met her, Pinkie was oddly quiet.

Should…Should I ask her what’s wrong?

I decided that I would, if only to be polite.

“Pinkie? Something the matter?”

“Bluey…If I’m wrong I’m super sorry!" she looked a little nervous now "But…can you, y’know…not read?”

I felt a chill down my spine.

No, don’t panic! My mind was racing with a new fear. This doesn’t mean anything. Just muddle your way through it, don’t let her know you don’t belong. Don’t. Don’t-

“Is that why you didn’t know who to look for, even though their names were written on the back?” Pinkie bluntly asked, her big blue eyes staring right into me.

“I…I can. It’s just…” Think you idiot, think!! “When I read…the-uh-…the parts get all jumbled.” Smooth. “I don’t…like anypony knowing I have a really hard time with it. Makes them think I’m…dumb.”

It was a flimsy-ass excuse. But telling her I couldn’t read this language specifically would almost certainly point to the fact that I wasn’t a local. That would raise so many other questions. “What language can you read?” “Why didn’t you ever learn?” And so many others I might’ve just dodged.

“Nopony would think you’re dumb!” she sounded very sympathetic and her ears were down. “You just leave all the reading stuff to your good pal. Pinkie Pie!” she turned back into the perky ball of energy I’d known for all of an hour and a half.

“Right, thanks Pinkie…” Seems like I dodged that bullet. First Rare Find, now her. If these ponies keep noticing what's wrong with me I might be in trouble..

“So, do you those two might be in town somewhere?” I asked, changing the subject.

“Nope!” she said with a big smile, starting to bounce back the way we came.

Oh wow, what a blunt answer.

“What uh...what makes you say that?” I followed her, catching up faster than earlier. At least my footing is getting better.

“I know everypony that lives in Ponyville, and I’ve never heard of those two.” She said, waving to some ponies across the way. They waved back with big smiles and choruses of “Hey Pinkie Pie!”

“You know…every single pony?” There’s no way, she’s exaggerating.

“Every single pony, two donkeys, a zebra and one baby dragon!”

Okay I’ll…just unpack that later…

“And…you’re absolutely sure they don’t live in town?” I was getting more depressed with every word.

“Yep! But if you wanna find out, we could go to Town Hall! We'll look in the records, and see where they are now!”

Records huh…Guess I have some luck. And now there’s a pony on my side that can read for me, and who “knows everypony in town” apparently. Meaning there’s no questions or awkward introductions if I needed something. Pinkie could be my buffer between me and anybody that finds me odd.

“You’d really help me with all that, huh?”

“Of course!”

The stubborn part of me wanted to tell her that it was fine, that I didn’t need her help. But when I started this I was clueless and alone. Now, I was still pretty clueless, but I had a willing helper that didn’t ask for anything in return.

Wait a damn second…

“What’s in it for you?” I asked, eyes narrowed.

She smiled really big, and got an extra spring in her already springy step.

“That we’ll be friends, Bluey!” she went ahead of me, bouncing backwards down the road. “And I always throw my new friends a party!” She was smiling so wide it looked like it hurt. She was looking to me for an answer.

Friends huh? She just met me. But saying no would kind of put a damper on this whole operation.

“Uh…sure Pinkie I’ll be your friend, I guess.” I shrugged.

She reached into her hair and pulled out a party noisemaker, blowing away and doing a cartwheel, amazingly enough for a pony. I wonder if my hair got that big, could I keep stuff in it too?

A party on the other hand, I’m kind of trying to keep a low profile. Having a party thrown for me would kind of be the opposite of that.

“But no thank you on the party, Pinkie.”

That noisemaker suddenly sounded so sad.

“You don’t like parties?” She was really pulling some puppy dog eyes on me. But I stood firm.

“Parties are…fine.” I went to a bunch of parties in high school, they were okay. “But-”

“Great! I’ll start making the invitations!" she bounced back. "How does tomorrow night sound? Unless you want it to be a surprise??”

“Hang on! I’m…only here in Ponyville to find anything on those ponies. I’m gonna be too busy for a party and I’m not gonna be in town long enough afterwards for you to throw me one.”

“I can put together a party, lickity-split! It won’t take any time at all!”

I don’t think she’s gonna take no for an answer. I was on the spot. It is all she’s asking me for her help. Once all this is done, I’ll be human again and hopefully be long gone. Just agree to it Lottie, even if it’s a lie. You don’t actually have to go. She doesn’t even know you! Why does she want to be friends with a total stranger anyway?

“Well, you convinced me Pinkie. I’ll go to a party of yours, but only once I’ve got my thing done, no sooner.”

She jumper really high in the air and squealed with laughter. Confetti seemed to pop out from behind her, raining down on me. Then she lazily floated down like she was as light as a feather.

Don’t think about it.

“Oh!! This is gonna be so much fun!” she pulled me into a very tight hug, practically knocking the wind out of me. “We’re gonna find your ponies, and then we’re gonna have the best time EVER!!”

“Okay…” I wheezed. This pony is nuts. She let me go and I caught my breath. “Should we…go to Town Hall now?”

“Not today, silly!” she giggled. “To pull a record that’s not yours, you have to do some paperwork!”

“How long will that take?” I asked, dreading the answer.

“Abooouuuut…three days, since they're probably gonna have to pull it from the older archives.” I groaned at that. “But hey, since I help Mayor Mare out sometimes with the filing system…I bet I can get them to knock it down to two.”

She sounded so proud of that. Two more days to even know where to look next. Two more days of pony. Magical ponyland had the wonders of bureaucracy, fantastic.

“Thanks Pinkie, that’s a big help.” She was beaming. I dusted the confetti out of my hair and realized we’d walked far enough and I recognized the marketplace. “Welp, guess I’ll see you in two days.”

I started walking away, thinking about what I could eat for dinner back at my house, when I heard her bouncing closer. She was smiling some more, looking at me expectantly.

“Yes Pinkie?” I sighed, forcing a smile. She was starting to weird me out, just a bit. What more could she want?

“You wanna haaaaaang out tomorrow?” She was dancing from one front hoof to the other.

“And do what?” I laughed a little, but my sarcasm was not detected.

“We can do anything you want Bluey! We can bake cakes, or eat cakes, or go bowling, or play with Gummy, or meet my friends, or see a movie, or-”

“Okay, good! Let’s…eat some cakes and…see where the day takes us. I will see you tomorrow Pinkie.”

She wrapped me up in another hug, this one much gentler.

“It'll be okay Bluey, I’ll help you find them.”

I was going out of my way to take advantage of this pink pony’s kindness. And despite our rocky meeting, this experience had been relatively painless so far.

I could at least try to act the part of a friend.

“Thanks Pinkie.” I mustered up a real smile, actually grateful that I’d gotten such a lucky break. “This’ll be…fun.”

She told me to meet her at "Sugarcube Corner”, the place we'd been before, and that we should meet at 8 am.

It beats sitting in my house alone, shut off from the outside world. Shows how desperate this whole situation has got me. I looked back at her, waving excitedly at me. I waved back a little.

She is nice, if a bit too energetic for me. As long as I don’t get covered in cake batter again, I can stand “hanging out” until I’m human again.

After that, I’ll never have to set foot in Ponyville, or this world ever again.

Pinkie was so excited to hang out with her new friend tomorrow! They were gonna have so much fun together!

Pinkie watched as Cornflower Blue walked off, and she felt a little pang of sadness inside.

She needs a fun day. Pinkie thought, her ears drooping. I’ve never seen a pony fake so many smiles in so little time. And even when she smiled for real just now, it was a little…off. Like she was out of practice.

Like she hardly smiles.

She bounced off towards Sugarcube Corner, already getting so many amazing ideas for how they were gonna spend the day tomorrow.

Don’t worry, Bluey! I’ll help you be happy for real!

Author's Note:

oh Lottie, that's not how you friend.

Pinkie makes a new friend! i hope it works out for her.

and this chapter introduces my pony ocs, periwinkle and sassafras, hope you guys like them (original characters, do not steal ©™)

coffee exists in the comics so i'm counting it.

from this chapter on, I'm typing everything from scratch. no re-used chapters from earlier drafts of the story, so chapters will be coming out farther apart. but it's all planned out, no more plot-tweaking.

i really appreciate your comments guys, it helps me figure out what im doing good and bad and i fine-tune the writing a little. i'd love to hear what you think about certain developments, if you think a plot detail seems off so i can clear it up, etc.

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