• Published 19th Jul 2015
  • 989 Views, 31 Comments

My Little Mages: After Effects - dracone



It's been a few weeks since Twilight moved to town and everyone is adjusting and preparing for changes

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Solving Arrangements

Applejack got out of bed and stretched, it was still a good hour and a half before the sun was up. She headed downstairs after taking a look out her window to see how Big Mac was doing. As usual he was checking the health of the trees, this week it was the northwestern region of the orchard, she could just barely make him out in the pre-morning light. She headed down to start her morning chores and practice after giving a satisfied nod.

On her way out she caught Apple Bloom up earlier than usual, it being a weekend made it extra suspicious to her since Apple Bloom slept 'til the crack of noon no matter what you did to her when the weekends came, well that and they tended to be a bit less forceful in waking her on weekends. “Bloom,” said Applejack, “what're ya doin' up befer me on Saturday?”

“Sweetie Belle, Scootaloo and I 're gonna go campin' next ta tha forest fer the whole weekend on account we don't have any schoolwork fer tha weekend.”

“Are y'all gonna bae supervised?”

“Um, we didn't ask anybody else ta join ef that's what ya mean,” she gave a sheepish smile.

“Four hours!”

“What?”

“Ya go' four hours ta find a 'responsible' person ta go with ya, an' ya can't go askin' Mac or Granny ta go wid ya.”

“Oh, but the rest of the town doesn't start gettin' up fer another two hours, I doubt Ah'll ever find anybody responsible-like ta go wid us, but if Ah don't then yer gonna make sure tha' all three of us can't go on this trip we've been plannin' since Wednesday.”

“And if this trip o' yers falls through ya can spend more time planning et between the rest o' yer responsibilities. Now fer campin' ya don't 'ave ta raid tha kitchen. All ya need are a bag fer carryin' everything, a canteen with clean water, a few bags o' trail mix, a compass, proper attire with a few spares, and good company. So, if yer serious go and get cleaned up and show me what ya think passes fer acceptable campin' attire. Ya said everybody else won't be up fer another two hours, so ya can spend tha' time doin' an inventory check.”

*****************************

Three hours later Applejack was smiling to herself as she went through her morning practice, she knew the routines of nearly everybody in town. She knew with near absolute certainty that the earliest anybody would be willing to discuss watching the girls for their trip would be the afternoon. Although the idea of a camping trip did sound like a good idea, she decided to have a talk with Rarity about going on a camping trip with the girls at a later date.

Applejack chuckled to herself, after seeing Bloom and her friends around the grounds on a pretty regular basis she had a good idea of how they were each taking possible frustration. Apple Bloom was no doubt pacing about, that is if she didn't have a plenty of materials for maybe at try at making something; Scootaloo was probably trying to work off her frustration physically, most likely through the act of literally beating her head against a wall; and Sweetie Belle was probably the only one of the three keeping her cool, probably reading up on proper camping practices and taking notes for their next attempt. She shook the thoughts from her head and returned to her practice with the training sword in her hands.

Around an hour later the three girls in question returned with groans over not being able to find anyone for their outing within the allotted time. They quickly made their way into the temple without even bothering to take notice of anyone else. Applejack chuckled to herself as she continued to swing the practice sword. That is until she spotted Filthy Rich, wearing a fancy looking business suit (more than usual for him) and hair slicked back in what she had come to call a 'business mane', with what looked like a white clad burly male warrior type, probably a mercenary that was high on muscle and low on brains. She gave an exasperated sigh as she tossed the practice sword aside (it landing in the barrel nearby for all the training weapons used by temple residents) and walked up to meet them, “Mister Rich,” she said in her most cordial voice, only letting a hint of her annoyance slip, “Ah can see ya still don't seem ta get what we've baen telling ya each time ya made a 'proposition' ta us.”

“This is a business, and by the articles of trade that means we can negotiate a deal.”

“An' as Ah an' mah kin keep tellin' ya those don't apply ta these here grounds, they're under tha rules an' bylaws o' religious testament, in other words this land an' tha orchards on et are HOLY GROUND, an' thus not subject ta any o' yer Merchant rules or bylaws,” she took a look at the white clad mercenary man, she could practically hear the rat running on a wheel in place of his mind, “but Ah can see ya won't go widout one last ditch effort fer rights ta summa tha orchard, from the looks of your choice of...champion you expect it ta bae a contest o' strength.” He gave her an affirming nod, “Sorry ta disappoint ya, but that's not 'ow Apples settle these kinds o' disputes,” he gave her a confused look, “Bloom, Mac, Granny, Mister Rich is back an' 'e 'as decided ta challenge us fer summa tha orchard, ya know tha rules.”

Big Mac was the first to exit the temple complex, as usual he was dressed in his usual cleric's robe with his towering hammer over his shoulder before setting it down with head's top in the ground with a resounding thump before slightly leaning on the shaft. Apple Bloom was next, she was in her usual garb with a pair of worn work gloves on her hands and worn goggles on her head along with her pink bow on the back of her head. Last was Granny Smith, in her usual getup with her cane in hand and a sour look on her face.

“Alright dearies, fer those o' ya tha' don't know the rules Ah'll explain 'em nice an' simple," said Granny, "tha Challenger chooses which o' tha representin' Apples they want ta go agains' an' tha Apple chooses tha type o' challenge that tha two representatives will 'ave, if tha challenger wins they get ta name their prize from tha Apples wid no questions asked, but if tha Apple wins tha challenger 'as ta extend us tha same courtesy. All terms o' tha agreement 'ave ta be written out befer tha challenge, in triplicate. One goes ta us, one tha challenger an' one goes ta a third party with no vested interest in tha dispute.”

“That's crazy, but reasonable,” said Filthy Rich, “the problem here is that we can't possibly find a third party that's neutral in both sides of this dispute, practically the entire town doesn't want any changes to these grounds if it doesn't involve expanding for more growing room and every third party I call up on will have a vested interest in my success.”

“There is one person,” said Applejack, “she's still new in town, an' she takes the duties given 'er very seriously. If ya don't mind a magicborn getting between us Ah suggest we 'ead on over ta tha library an' ask 'er if she'll be willin' ta delegate, if not she can be responsible fer contactin' a third party that likely has little ta no vested interest in our dealings.”

“That mage?” said Filthy Rich, “she's a boarderline recluse, are you sure she'll give us the time required to explain things?”

“Seein' as she was 'ere a few days ago ta give tha temple a checkup an' nothin' more Ah can say she'll at least be willin' ta entertain hostin' us fer a few minutes. Ah would recommend somebody else, but they've all been 'ere a few years now, best we ask someone who hasn't had a full year in town just yet.”

“Seems reasonable to me,” said Filthy Rich.

The big white dressed idiot Rich had hired said nothing, all four of the Apples could practically hear the rusty gears that passed for his brain functions trying to move. Apple Bloom was actually wincing, it seemed that just the thought of the sound of a poorly maintained machine had an effect on her. So the six made there way to the town's library, After Apple Bloom ran back into the temple and told her friends what the situation was.

On the way out they bumped into Rarity, who was coincidentally going to get Sweetie Belle. She agreed to see Scootaloo home as well. After giving the white clad enchantress a quick rundown of what the were up to, in case Apple Bloom's friends asked, they got back on their course for the library.

*******************************

After the few minutes that it took to travel from the temple grounds to the library, Golden Oak, Applejack had everyone stop. After checking the sign to see what the library's business hours were, they were in luck since the weekend hours told her the library was open. After her check she ushered everybody in. Soon they entered Spike crawled up gave a “cluraklack,” and motioned for them to follow him, which they did. The young dragon crawled up on a violet upholstered high backed chair with Celestia's emblem and gestured to some of the other chairs and the couch.

When filthy Rich went to sit in the high backed chair the baby dragon growled menacingly at him. “Well, I never...I can sit wherever I want, you insufferable lizard.”

“Actually,” said Apple Bloom, “Spike's a bebe dragon, you'd best be nice ta 'im, no tellin' whut 'e might do ta ya when 'e matures a bit more.”

Filthy Rich looked with surprise at Spike and said, “I suppose he breaths fire too, who would be crazy enough to keep such a creature as a pet in facility like this?”

Twilight sauntered into the room in her usual attire, which looked a little disheveled for some reason, holding her staff as a walking stick in her right hand, “He's my familiar actually,” said Twilight, “and he notified me that you were probably coming here for reasons other than academic inquiry,” she moved across the room and dropped herself in a less than refined manner into the chair with Celestia's emblem, in doing so Celestia's sun changed into a large pink star surrounded by five smaller white ones. “As for the chair, it's Spike's favorite and as such only people he likes can sit in it. The enchantments on it are quite fascinating... but that's not why you're here. What can I do for all of you this fine day?”

“We're here about a business misunderstandin', mister Rich here doesn't seem ta understand most o' what we've been tellin' him,” said Granny Smith, “so we're doin' a time honored Apple tradition ta get him ta give up tha ghost as et were.”

“And part of it involves a neutral third party, I take it?” Said Twilight

“Yup,” said Applejack, “and yer tha mos' impartial person we could think of as being accessible fer tha time bein', Ah hope we weren't intrudin'.”

“Oh, no, the weekend is so slow I usually use it for study purposes, but if you need my assistance as an impartial party you have it.”

“Excellent, tha way et works is mister Rich chooses wunna us, we're representin' tha temple an' tha clan, an' he's free ta choose any champion he wants, so long as they aren't tha third party or another member o' tha Apple clan. Once the challenger has selected tha opposin' representative that representative chooses tha challenge that will go down, once the challenge has been declared both sides write up tha conditions tha losin' side has ta abide by, then they both give their conditions forms ta tha third party, that third party writes up a more official bindin' legal contract fer both sides, once that's done we set tha contracts aside an' 'ave at tha challenge. Once a winner is decided tha losing side 'as et's form and victory contract torn an' scattered ta tha winds, tha winning side 'as their copy turned inta triplicate an' all sides get a copy.”

“I see,” said Twilight as she copied everything she was told on a notepad she kept handy along with the fountain pen she was using to write, “you're lucky I was studying up on law and contracts last night, it'll take me a few hours to write up the contracts. Mister Rich, choose your opponent so they can decide the nature of the challenge and both parties can write up what they expect other should they claim victory.”

Filthy Rich smirked to himself, he was very sure that Applejack or Big Macintosh would choose a contest of strength should he choose either of them as his opponent, which was the whole reason for the less than intelligent walking lighthouse he had hired. After taking a few minutes to think his options over he said, “I choose, miss Applejack as my opponent. So, what will our challenge be? Bushel hauling? Handling a dead tree with no assistance? I'm sure my associate and I can handle whatever you throw our way.”

Applejack gave smirk of her own, “tha challenge is,” she gave a wary look at the overly sized mercenary, one look and she could tell he was a skyborn, “a cider drinkin' contest.”

“Oh no,” said Big Mac.

“Ah was afraid she'd say that,” said Apple Bloom.

“Reminds me of the old days,” said Granny Smith, “Applejack is more like Ah was at 'er age, even was thinkin' tha same challenge as me.”

“But we won't be drinkin' just any old cider,” said Applejack, “we'll be drinkin' tha Apple clan's special 'challenge cider'.”

“That doesn't sound too bad,” said Filthy Rich.

“Ah drank a dragon under tha table with tha stuff once,” said Granny Smith, “talk abou' a lightweight, 'e only made et half way through his third barrel while Ah was on mah fifth.”

“She's exaggerating, right?” said Twilight.

“Hard ta tell wid Granny an' 'er war stories,” said Apple Bloom, “two years ago some o' miss Fluttershy's bears challenged Big Mac ta tha cider contest, they didn't even make et a full third o' tha mug befer passin' out.”

“An' they were some big grizzlies too,” chuckled Mac, “had me outdone fer size bae a considerable margin.”

“Alright, my champion will take on your challenge,” said Filthy Rich.

“Alright, both sides need to write up their requests of the other should their opponent falter,” said Twilight as she floated a set of parchments and fountain pens on a pair of clipboards to Applejack and Filthy Rich, “since it will take some time to set up I recommend the rest of the Apple clan's representatives go and prepare the 'battleground' while the rest of remain to finalize the pre-contest negotiations.”

The other three Apples nodded, “So, how we gonna send word everythang is ready, an' where ya need ta go?” said Apple Bloom.

“Take Spike,” said Twilight, “he'll send me the message all is ready, you just have to give him the word.” Spike crawled off the chair and on to Mac's shoulder.

“How's that work,” said Apple Boom.

“He's my familiar,” said Twilight, “that means he can send me a message the fastest way possible.”

“Okay, tanks,” said Apple Bloom before heading out of the library, followed shortly by Big Macintosh. Twilight caught a wind from Granny Smith before the elderly sage made her way out. She turned her attention to Applejack and Filthy Rich. Filthy Rich seemed to be wasting very little time writing on his four plus page demand form, as opposed to Applejack who was instead taking slow deliberate strokes with her pen and pausing after almost every word on her single sheet to think things through.

*************************************************

After a good half hour, mostly on the part of Filthy Rich, the two handed their forms to Twilight for her to work the legal magic she was asked to provide. Looking over Applejack's two paragraph request slip she gave a brisk nod and set on the writing desk next to her. Taking a look at Filthy Rich's form she cocked an eyebrow and said, “you were writing a list of simple requests of the other party, not a contract. Mister Rich, I'm sorry to say that you seem to think that if you do the work for me that it will hasten the proceedings. I'm going to inform you now that is the opposite of what will be happening. I'm going to have to request you go back and write up you requests of the opposing party again, and keep it confined to a maximum of two sheets. I will also state now that if you try to mire it in any of what is commonly referred to a as 'legal jargon' I will request you write the requests again and continue to do so until you make your demands concise. However, if you insist on wasting everybody's time with writing your demands within the legal jargon in excess of four days I will have no choice other than proclaim your opponents victors before the challenge even begins,” she held up her hand to stop the protest she knew was coming, “on grounds of an inability to abide by the rules imposed on you by the ritual, and if my research regarding those who follow your profession is accurate that means that you'll have your business rights suspended by the guild and be barred by all other guilds until the matter is properly resolved.”

Applejack gave a smirk to herself, she knew Twilight would have done her homework on matters like this and it was one of the main reasons she named Twilight as the third party. Filthy Rich huffed and stomped back over to his clipboard and started writing again, while he did that Twilight got to work on the more official looking version of Applejack's victory terms. Applejack waited patiently for Filthy Rich to finish, this time around he handed Twilight half a page worth of writing. Twilight gave silent sigh and just started scratching bits of the document handed to her right out, much to the horror of Filthy Rich and amusement of Applejack.

“Why are you striking out bits of the form I handed you? It doesn't make sense,” said Filthy Rich.

“Because you still don't seem to understand what I meant by 'legal jargon', mister Rich,” said Twilight, “I'm well aware you are used to writing up forms with legal terms to help facilitate your transactions, but in this case that is unrequired since I am handling the legal side of the matter. Also the absence of the terms you provided provide a different sort of context. I am seeking an equatable exchange on the part of all parties. In short, I'm making sure your demands are reasonable and will reword your demands as such to make it so. You are, after all, asking for unrestricted access to hallowed ground, and the Divinity Accords of the last century clearly state that short of the caretakers of the grounds picking up and moving to a new location you must allow them to manage the land as they see fit, regardless of your personal feelings or business interests. If you were unaware of this then I suggest you read up on them,” she floated a tome over to him, “the part you're interested in starts on page 241 and ends on page 275. I will be quite busy transcribing all of the requests into a format that is legally acceptable and binding, so I recommend that if you wish to remain here until the transcriptions are complete that you make use of the materials here and update your knowledge of business.”

Applejack gave a silent chuckle over her own apparent victory before the contest before asking Twilight if she had a place for practice or training, Twilight told her she had some training dummies in an area she had managed to isolate with her magic and gave the paladin a set of directions, with some steps that were strangely specific.

Once Applejack had made her way to practice range she looked around and found Twilight had thought ahead and provided a few barrels with various practice weapons. She pulled out a two-handed practice and gave it a few quick quality tests before giving a curt nod and going to attack the dummies that were setup. As she assaulted the masses of straw and wood she thought back on her terms for if she won, she figured it was pretty good deal for Filthy Rich and the Apples. In exchange for getting twenty free bushels of apples of his choice the most any of the Apples would have to pay anything having to do with a business transaction with Filthy Rich or his markets would be fifty percent of what was being charged to other customers. They would also be able to get reduced prices on any resources they special ordered through his markets, and could even make a purchase through an exchange of goods rather than usual denominational currency. That way he still gets products to sell and the family members that made the order get what they asked for.

She wasn't so sure about Rich's victory requests, from what Twilight had said she figured he was trying to make things good for him and and less so for the Apples. She really needed to work off her frustration. The sound of one of the dummy stands snapping broke her out of her musings. She stepped back to assess the damage so she would know what to do when she offered to fix the dummies later. She instead witnessed five of the six dummies, she she had apparently assaulted in her thinking, sprawled on the floor heavily damaged begin putting themselves back together with some sort of self-repair spell Twilight had them under. Still standing back and thinking about it Applejack realized that Twilight had probably done so to the dummies due to the nature of some mages to actually sling potentially highly destructive spells. Taking a quick look around the rest of the training hall she noticed burn marks on the wall that indicated either a fire spell or lightning spell and struck there. Closer to the floor she saw the kinds of stress that could only come from an ice or water spell and when she looked at the ceiling she noticed the sweeping marks that indicated a wind spell.

It looked like Twilight had heavily enchanted the training area to be well reinforced against spells in addition to having the practice targets enchanted with some sort of spell that caused them to reassemble. Taking a look back at the practice dummies she noticed that they weren't exactly the best quality, in fact they their construction showed they were barely functional as practice dummies. The paladin shook her head a bit and laughed to herself. First thing she'd do after the challenge was dealt with would be help Twilight make some better practice dummies, maybe it would be a good idea to get some of their friends involved in it as well.

Applejack was secure in who she was and what she was meant to do with her life, that meant not many things were able frustrate her. Unfortunately for anybody that knew her there were things that would do more than irk her to the point she would become a woman on mission until the job was completed, correcting shoddy workmanship was very high on that list. Applejack took pride in a job done right, but that also meant a poor or lazy job would peeve her to many ends. In fact it bugged so much she she decided march back on over to Twilight and tell what the plan was.

***************************************

When Applejack returned she was greeted to the sights and sounds of Filthy Rich and Twilight arguing, she couldn't follow what they were saying due the fact that every other word was complete jargon to her. To make matters worse an agitated Spike decided to use her as his perch, while still showing that he was very much agitated. Applejack decided to end the show by giving sharp whistle. This did indeed get everyone's attention, and as a bonus a less argumenative Twilight caused Spike to calm down. So much so that she heard him say, Thanks for that, they've been at each others throats for the past twenty minutes.

While it was true that usually only a familiar could be heard by its own personal mage, after the Nightmare Moon incident all of Twilight's closest friends could hear him. Applejack didn't mind one bit, mostly because she usually tended to be out of range of the effects of whatever magic allowed her to hear him as effectively as she did her own family. “Now that Ah got all o' yer attention what in tarnation is going on here? We had an agreement, an' from what Ah see somebody didn't quite fully understand wha' tha' agreement fully meant.”

“I was just correcting her terminology,” said Filthy Rich indignantly.

“Mister Rich,” Twilight huffed before switching to a very neutral tone, “the whole purpose of my being a third party is make it all as impartial as possible, your act of interring with my writing up the documentation destroys all that. You are without a doubt a highly capable businessman, but if you persist in getting involved with the very thing you made an agreement to not get involved with I will just declare the Apples victors by default on grounds that you are trying to heavily influence the wording of legally binding documents. Furthermore, I will send a note to Chantalot about your very un-businessman like behavior. I will have you know I have read and memorized every business related book, scroll, report and study that has been put out in the past hundred years, the most recent having been made available for everybody's consumption three months ago. Your constant inference in the simple act of writing up the documents, which should usually take around seven minutes to write up based on the structure of the agreements, into a process that is taking hours, most of it involves your interring in me doing the one job everybody asked me to do in relation to the contest.”

“You can't prove that,” said Filthy Rich, “since hired the I've been the only witness to your allegations.”

“Actually, I can,” said Twilight, “this whole complex is rigged with observation spells, which send backups of their recordings to three separate locations in Chantalot that I had regular access to. One of those locations is under the strictest protection of the Royal Guard and another is within the residence of a pair of well-respected mages. I just need to send a note asking one of the 'caretakers' to go to where those observation records are kept and do a specific action and they'll know everything that's gone on here since I started settling in. And to prove it's not a bluff,” she snapped her fingers and crystal sphere on a stand appeared next to her, she held her hand over it and did a few quick, complex finger motions, the sphere projected a large rectangle that showed Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon checking out a set of fantasy books while making fun of the Cutie Mage Crusaders. As Applejack had predicted each of the girls was doing what she had anticipated. Scootaloo was beating her head against the wall next to one of the shelves, Sweetie Belle was reading and taking notes, and Apple Bloom was pacing the length of the foyer. “Of course if that's not good enough,” she moved her hand over the sphere again and made few more motions to reveal Filthy Rich giving her difficulties, Applejack wondered why she couldn't hear anything, she'd ask Twilight about that after everything was resolved.

**********************************************************

Two hour later, much to the irritation of Twilight and Applejack, everything had been dealt with, Filthy Rich was grumbling about how somebody like Twilight couldn't possibly know the proper way to write up a legal document of any kind.

“Befer ya say anythang,” said Applejack once they came up on the 'battleground', “mister Rich an' Twilight had a dispute over legal stuff.” The other Apples put their heads in their hands and shook them for a moment.

“Alrigh',” said Granny Smith, “contestants, take yer places.”

Applejack and the big guy and in red took a seat opposite of each other. Granny Smith and Apple Bloom rolled two of the fifty plus barrels near the 'drinking table', Big Macintosh was pulling barrels from the assortment in a manner that wouldn't disturb the stack and turn it into a case of running from the barrels. After the barrels came up next them Applejack got ready break her barrel open, but before that she said, “Ah almost fergot, if ya break tha barrel in a way that smashes it that does not count towards a finished drink, an' ya gotta down tha contents o' yer barrel best ya can, only when et's baen emptied through yer drinkin' can ya discard an' let 'em know ya need another.” She then used the point of her elbow to smash a hole in the barrel next to her and started downing the contents, her opponent used his fist to make a hole in his barrel.

“Was the making the hole the barrel really necessary?” Inquired Twilight.

“Wid a competition like this, yep,” said Big Macintosh, “tha openin' tha barrels is part of the competition, that's why AJ gave that little speech before headin' ta down 'er drink.”

Everyone was watching the two drink from the barrels, if Rarity had been there she would have probably made comment about how their drinking straight from the barrels lacked some kind of elegance. Twilight took her role as an impartial judge that was merely observing quite seriously, in notebook she had brought she kept a tally of every finished barrel, much to the amusement of Granny Smith.

Of the fifty plus barrels arranged there Filthy Rich's 'champion' only made it to number thirteen before keeling over the the table drunk, Applejack made it twenty before she started looking noticably tipsy. “And that is why you don't bet against an earthborn, mister Rich,” said Twilight, “as per your agreement with Apples you will honor this contract,” she reached into her bag and pulled out a copy of the contract she had written up based on the notes Applejack had provided, “I think you'll find more favorable than you think, just give it a good read.”

Filthy Rich read over his copy for a few minutes, then reread it five more times to make sure he hadn't misread it. He found that the Apples were indeed giving a good deal with offering of first pick of any harvest for his sales, of course the discounts on his standard goods and the special orders made through his services did make him worry a bit, seeing as he never offered discounts to even his closest parners beyond one or two deals, but as a proper merchant and businessman he couldn't worm his way out of a legally binding contract without having the wrath the other party and any of the guilds of whom he was affiliated raining down judgement on his head. Diamond Tiara wasn't going to be happy about this, especially considering her attitude towards others that didn't seem as well-off as Filthy Rich and his family. This was even more evident when he remembered he had announced his intent of issuing of a challenge to the Apples to his daughter earlier that day, he had boasted to her about always finding a way to claim victory in his challenges, the contract made it look more like they came out even instead having one side come out the clear victor.

Applejack gave a nod to Twilight and Filthy Rich and thanked them for their time, everyone made their way back to where they started. On the way out Filthy Rich handed a small bag of coins to the hired muscle he had hired and gave him thanks for agree to the business arrangement.

Once everybody was gone Applejack turned to Big Macintosh and said, “Wur lucky they didn't pick ya, Bloom or Granny, no telling whut those three would have come up with.”

“Eeyup,” said Mac with a smirk.

“Ah'd o' challenged 'em ta a rassling match,” said Granny Smith from the temple's entrance, “tai'nt none 'at ever bested me en wun o' those en tha pas' thirty years.”

“Ah'd o' made et a scavenger 'unt,” said Apple Bloom from her room's window on the second level of the temple, “an' made et so we 'ad ta see what we cud make wid whut we scrounged up.”

Mac just shook his head and said nothing. Applejack then reached into her pocket and read the folded note Twilight had handed her on the way out asking her why there were fifty plus barrels arranged in a basic rectangular pyramid formation, she just chuckled and handed the note to Big Macintosh, Mac in turn gave a light blush when he read the note.

Author's Note:

Well, it's been a while since this was updated. Can you take a guess as to who the big guy that showed up with Filthy Rich is? I thought it was a good idea if I had Filthy Rich make an appearance in relation to an Applejack focused chapter. I won't have Diamond Tiara or Silver Spoon make an appearance until Didj posts them on his deviant art page, Filthy Rich was just a bit easier to set up like this (and I figured I'd give Didj a base to work with when he gets to reading this chapter). Give me suggestions on who you want the next chapter to focus on, once all the Mane 6 have had their focus chapters I'll start working on chapters that focus on their interactions.