• Published 3rd Jan 2016
  • 4,892 Views, 102 Comments

Inter-Dimensional Crusaders! - Infinite Affection



When Apple Bloom finds a mysterious anomaly, she comes face to face with the strangest thing possible, herself as a pony! Combined with her fellow crusaders, they embark on a journey of discovery of the human world and Equestria.

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Suspicions

Author's Note:

Apologies for the gaps between my writing but I should be able to get it done quicker now that the story is taking off to its final chapters.

Three days later….

The week in the human world was shooting by like lightning and the pony crusaders had almost gotten used to the way of life…almost. For Apple Bloom, even the concept of the television was hard enough to understand. But over the course of the last three days, the young farm girl had been exposed to more whatchamacallits like a “computer”:

“So ya just push the letters here an’ then the words an’ moving things will come up…here?”

“That’s right! Gosh, Apple Bloom; it’s like you’ve never used a computer before!” Twilight had answered.

A “tractor”:

“Y’all don’ recognise a tractor when ya see one? Why, sis, we use the thing most every day ta plough the fields. Is yar memory on the fritz or summin’?”

And something Applejack called a “gun”:

“Now don’ tell me, ya don’ recognise Big Macintosh’s varmint gun? Ya practically want ta shoot it every time ya see it. Helps keep those coyotes an’ any would be varmints off our property. But o’ course, yar too young to operate summin’ like that!”

In addition to these new contraptions, all three crusaders had to learn some new skills; with one/two perhaps learning faster than the other two/one. For instance, Apple Bloom and Scootaloo took well to learning to write with hands – emphasising that it was much easier than using their teeth to hold the pencil – whereas Sweetie Belle who relied on her magic to levitate pencils or quills had to learn from scratch; earning some anxious looks from her older sibling.

Although it may have not been clear to Apple Bloom initially, she figured that Sweetie Belle was the pony…ahem person, that had been at the most disadvantage since coming into their new predicament. Without any of her unicorn magic, she was having to learn to do everything by hand; and even in Equestria, that would be some feat.

Unfortunately for the trio, they were in the human world. And none of them were quite aware of how much attention or suspicion they were attracting from their families. Apple Bloom however was determined to make the most of her time here, whatever the outcome. She had begun to like human life a lot and wasn’t ready to give up on it yet.

“There ya are…” reassured Apple Bloom as she emptied the bag of food into the trough. She had been surprised at just how much stronger she was; making tedious and repetitive tasks around the farm a lot quicker. Dressed in her farm dungarees, she quickly made short work of feeding Winona.

“Now your trough’s all full…Winona.” Apple Bloom listened as her pet dog neighed in front of her, elated by the offering of food. It was early in the afternoon, something Apple Bloom always knew to be home to lunchtime. Winona trotted up to the trough and began to gently put her nose into the feed, swishing her tail happily.

Apple Bloom still had trouble believing that the family dog in Equestria was the family horse in this world – her first equine contact after leaving her home world.

“How are ya?” she asked. The horse didn’t answer and kept on eating.

“Is that food good?” Still, Winona reminded silent.

“Can’t ya talk, Winona?”

“What ya talkin’ about, sis?”

Apple Bloom twisted her head to find Applejack carrying two light crates. She dropped them on the ground near the fence and then took a tissue from her pocket to wipe the sweat off her brow.

“Oh hey AJ, ah was just trying ta talk with Winona. Is she not in a mood for talkin’?”

“Nothin’ seemed out o’ the blue when ah last saw ta her,” Applejack answered as she approached the pair of them and reached her hand over to stroke Winona’s mane. “Isn’t that right, sugarplum?”

The horse whinnied at Applejack’s touch and the farm girl chuckled in her typical way.

“See? Now what did ah tell ya?”

“Ya mean, she doesn’t talk?” Apple Bloom burst out, without a second thought.

Applejack’s face scrunched up. “Well o’course not; animals don’ talk. Ah thought ya knew that, sis.” The farmer bit her tongue on her next sentence, thinking about it before saying the next part. “Ah mean, animals can talk in their own lil’ way but it’s just not summin’ we can understand. Has Miss Cheerilee not taught ya that already?”

Apple Bloom grinned sheepishly. “No…ah-ah guess not.” Her answer only increased the worry on her big sister’s expression.

Applejack bent down slightly to stand eye level with her younger sibling. “Apple Bloom? Is everythang alright? Ah’m getting a lil’ worried bout’ ya. The way ya’ve been acting around the farm and such; forgetting things all of o’ sudden. Yar not ill are ya?”

“No! Nothing like that, sis,” replied Apple Bloom, the guilt on her face becoming clearer and clearer.

Her elder sibling placed a reassuring hand on her shoulder. “Well if there is something going on, ya know ya can always tell yar big sis. Ya know better than anyone that ah don’ judge and it goes without saying that ah’ll support any decision ya make. We’re family after all.”

Tears were welling up in the corner of Apple Bloom’s eyes. Even if she wasn’t a pony, Applejack was still her sister and she couldn’t bear to keep on lying to her, or at least keep the truth hidden from her. She started to tense up as it became difficult to maintain her composure from the overwhelming guilt attempting to break out.

“Ah-ah know, sis, ah-” Apple Bloom paused. Was she really going to reveal to her sister of her true nature? That she was another version of Apple Bloom from a world of talking magical ponies? She knew her big sister wouldn’t dismiss any such idea, no matter how weird, just as long as she didn’t suppose that Apple Bloom was lying to her. And AJ had a pretty good built-in lie detector.

Apple Bloom sighed in defeat, her nerves simply buckling under the pressure. “Well, sis, ya see-”

“Hey, you two!”

Both of them turned to the surprise interjection from over near the barn. Sunset Shimmer could be seen waving at them from over near the barn with a greeting smile. Applejack took her attention off the relieved Apple Bloom and walked over to Sunset. The two met midway between the barn and the corral fence and embraced each other lovingly.

“Howdy, Sunset. What brings ya here? Ya need somethin’?” began the apple farmer.

“Acutally, AJ, I’m just here to return your phone. You left it at mine last night. Of course, I could completely understand why you’d forget it.” Sunset reached into the side pocket of her skirt an pulled out an iconic apple themed mobile which she handed to the apple farmer. “Found it under the bed sheets, wouldn’t ya know.”

Applejack’s cheeks turned a little red at that. “He-he, Apple Bloom, why don’ ya go…”

“Uh…Apple Bloom?”

The sassy sibling was nowhere to be found. Sunset had no doubt in her mind that she spotted the two of them from a distance but the little farmer had scurried off somewhere. Concern filled her.

“Did something happen?”

Applejack placed her left arm on her side and scratched her head with the other. “Ah can’t rightly be sure.” She turned back to Sunset. “But ah reckon there’s really summin’ bothering her. She’s not happy or acting normal. I’m startin’ to get worried.”

Sunset laid a reassuring hand on the concerned farmer’s shoulder. “We will get to the bottom of this. So, what else has added to Apple Bloom’s weird behaviour?”

“Well, Sunset, ah’m not sure if this is me being a lil’ nosy about ma sister’s education but she’s been spoutin’ a lot o’ nonsense lately and ah dunno if Miss Cheerilee is teachin’ her this stuff. Crazy stuff like animals being able to talk; the clouds being controlled by people; the way that a-”

“Wait, backtrack! What was that?”

Applejack responded to the interruption swiftly. “She asked me yesterday who controlled the clouds an’ whether people were responsible fer makin’ it rain an’ such. T’was the strangest thang; Ah know fer sure that their teacher woulda taught them about the water cycle by now. Ah told her that the clouds moved on their own an’ she gave me a look – that kinda look where ya can’t quite believe summin’s real!”

“And then…” While Applejack continued to retell the events over the last few days, Sunset Shimmer’s neurons began to drum into deep thought. Were her most unlikely suspicions actually coming to light? Even now, her sense battled just as hard at the initial ideas she had had.
It couldn’t be a coincidence; there was too much about this that reminded her of Equestria. But could have Apple Bloom and her friends really been there?

It’s not impossible…

As Sunset finished off her train of deep thought, the sound of Applejack calling her name began to seep into her conscious, gaining in frustration all the while.

“Sunset? Sunset!”

“Huh? Oh sorry, AJ. I actually think I know what’s wrong with Apple Bloom.”

“Really? What ya thinkin’?”

Sunset Shimmer hesitated. “I hope you’ll forgive me, AJ, but I think it’s better if I talk to Apple Bloom about this first. I believe that she can tell you herself if I can confront her about it – assuming it is what I believe it to be.”

The farmer looked a little put out but soon warmed to the idea and smiled. “Sure, Sunset. Ah can respect that. Good luck.”

“Thanks for understanding, AJ. I know it’s hard for you to put your trust in me when it comes to your own family.”

Applejack chuckled. “You’re my family too now, remember?”

“Oh!” Sunset blushed. “Uhmm, yeah. I guess I am.”


Apple Bloom ran as fast as she could in no direction in particular; just anywhere that didn’t mean she was about to blurt out her true nature to her guilt-tripping sibling. Running off probably wouldn’t have helped matters though, she may have just made Applejack even more suspicious. And then there was Sunset.

Ever since that day in Sugarcube Corner, Apple Bloom was especially wary of Sunset Shimmer whenever she was close. It could have been something she misheard but if Sunset was truly from Equestria, she wasn’t going to take any chances.

What if she’s already found out?!!!!

Apple Bloom quickly glanced back to check the pair weren’t following her and grunted in pain as her entire body came to a halt after hitting something solid. The solid object wasn’t inanimate however and made a rather surprised grunt of her own.

“Woah! Watch where you’re going, Apple Bloom!”

The startled girl looked up to see Rainbow Dash directing some annoyed eyes at her.

“Oh s-sorry, Rainbow Dash! Ah didn’t see you.”

“Clearly.” The athletic teen rolled her eyes. “What are you running from anyway?”

“Ah-Ah uh….”

“Oh hey Apple Bloom, are you alright?” Scootaloo appeared behind Rainbow, her face wide with interest.

“Yeah, ah’m fine, Scoots. Ah just shoulda watched where ah was goin’.”

“Heh, don’t sweat it, Apple Bloom,” replied Rainbow Dash, seeming to have forgotten about her earlier question. “I was just on my way to work with the weather team when Scootaloo asked if she could come with.”

But ah thought AJ told me that humans don’ control the weather?

“Ya mind if ah come too?” asked a suddenly intrigued Apple Bloom.

Rainbow tensed up a little. “Well, I…I dunno.”

“Oh that’s ok then,” the young farm girl replied, evidently quite dejected.

“Wait! Uh….you can come. But you need to promise that you won’t tell your sister or my friends about this? Ok?”

“Uhh…yeah, sure.”

“Great! Good to have you tag along, Apple Bloom,” enthused Scootaloo. “It’s always good to have somepony near,” she whispered. Apple Bloom nodded in reply.

“Well, we best be getting a move on if your joining us, Apple Bloom. Come on!”


It took a while but the three of them managed to follow Rainbow Dash to a cellar door on the left side of CHS. Scootaloo looked confused at the lack of equipment needed for controlling the skies but blamed that on her lack of knowledge of the human world. She observed as Rainbow approached the cellar door and knocked twice on the wooden material.

“Password?” came a voice through the wooden cracks.

“Cumulonimbus!” answered the rainbow haired teen.

The cellar door opened with a wooden creak. A boy with a yellow shirt and nerdy looking glasses stood in the entryway.

“Hey Dash! Welcome! The guys will be glad you’re here.”

“Thanks. I’ve got some friends with me. That cool?”

“Whatever’s cool for you, is cool for us, Dash!”

The boy began to walk away, prompting Rainbow and the girls to follow him in.

Wait, why are we going inside? Shouldn’t weather stuff be done outside?

The three reached the bottom of the stairs, where Scootaloo alongside Apple Bloom could see the various instruments and computers that filled the room. Everyone was wearing white coats that went down beyond their waist and most had glasses on too – quite similar to that of the boy in the entryway. The machinery in the room was emitting soft beeping noises, some of them flashing red occasionally too.

It wasn’t long before a familiar face ran up and greeted them. “Hey Dash! And hey girls, fancy seeing you here.”

Twilight was dressed in the same fashion as the others, making a slight tune of her glasses with her hands. She then gave Rainbow a questioning look.

“But I thought you didn’t want people knowing?”

“I don’t, but they said they’d keep it a secret. Right, girls?” The girls nodded neutrally. “See? So what’s new, Twi?”

“Lots. There’s a new weather front coming in and we think we might have predicted a nearby tornado!”

“Woah! I need to see that!”

Rainbow shot off to the nearest terminal and Scootaloo could see her focusing hard as she worked the keys. She and Apple Bloom followed her and watched her at work. The computer she was using had various squares and lines crossing through each of them.

“Oh girls,” Rainbow started, getting Apple Bloom and Scootaloo’s attention. “Thanks for keeping my secret by the way. If the others found out about this, they might think I’m an egghead. Well except for Twilight, she’s already one and she keeps quiet about it.”

Scootaloo nodded in understanding but replied with a question. “What is this anyway?”

Rainbow looked surprised, giving Scootaloo her full attention. “I’m surprised you don’t remember, squirt. I’ve taken you here before.”

Scootaloo laughed sheepishly. “Oh…you did?”

“Yeah, though you were kinda bored by it. Meteorology isn’t for everyone.”

“Meteor…what?” asked Apple Bloom.

“Meteorology. The study of the weather. In this society, we can actually predict the likelihood of a hurricane occurring or the complexity of an occluded cold front and so much more. It’s so awesome!”

“So you can’t control the weather?” Scootaloo asked.

“Of course we can’t. No-one can! But we can predict what might happen. And that’s what makes meteorology the coolest thing ever!!!”

Scootaloo was dumbfounded. Wow, this world’s Rainbow Dash is a HUGE egghead.


Life in Equestria had proved difficult for the human crusaders to understand at first but in the short space of the last three days, they had almost mastered using their new forms.

For Apple Bloom, it had simply been an education in manipulating her new hooves to use the tools around the farm that were in no way different to those in her world. She was beginning to love the new way of farming – she found a real thrill out of using her hind legs to buck apple trees than just picking them with her hands.

Hands still had their uses in Equestria however. An earth pony trying to write a letter for instance was pretty challenging since they lacked either magic or movable digits to direct the pencil efficiently. Using one’s teeth wasn’t the best way to go about it; Apple Bloom recalled snapping a few pencils in her attempts to write a letter to Princess Celestia that Applejack had told her to do.

Scootaloo faired in much the same way. She discovered using her scooter to be less a strain on her legs, now that she had wings to propel her forward. Though that in turn had lead to some tuckered out wings.

And Sweetie Belle had come a long way in her spellcasting. After some rigorous study and concentration, the human turned pony was able to do the most basic of levitation spells – as was expected of a filly her age. In fact, the young unicorn now had the easiest time out of the crusaders at posing as a regular pony.

It came in handy today as Sweetie Belle levitated a teapot from the kitchen and onto the living room coffee table, followed closely by, “Sugar?”

“Yes please, Sweetie Belle,” Rarity replied, an appreciative smile on her face. “Two cubes, if you don’t mind.”

Sweetie Belle hastened to the task of levitating the lid off of the sugar jar and setting it aside before using her magic again to lift two sugar cubes into the air and plop them into her elder sister’s teacup.

“Much obliged, sister.” Rarity took a sip of her tea and giggled softly. “Ooooh, that really does hit the spot. Your spell ability is coming along well, Sweetie Belle. I really am proud of you.”

The young unicorn’s face lit up with joy. It was always pleasing to hear comments from her hard to impress sibling; even more so considering she wasn’t used to having a horn on her head.

“Thanks!” she said.

“You’re most welcome, Sweetie Belle. I feel so stupid for worrying about you a few days ago. I guess we all have days where we act out of sorts and say things we don’t mean, right?”

Sweetie Belle nodded. “Umm….yeah. I suppose we do.”

She propped herself comfortably on the living room couch next to Rarity and relaxed. However, as if on cue, a faint rumbling began to shake the walls of Carousel Boutique causing the young filly to flinch.

“What was that?”

“What was what?” Rarity queried. The building shook again, this time a lot more violent that Rarity’s coat rack toppled over. “What in Celestia?”

The front door jolted open, causing the two of them to jump. “Rarity! Something really really bad is heading towards Ponyville. I’m freaking out here!”

Even without sight, the pair could recognise the hyperactive behaviour of Pinkie Pie. “Ooh, and Twilight told me to tell you that we’re all gathering outside the Town Hall so that we can figure out what to do which is funny since it already sounds like Twilight knows what to do and we do this all the time and-

RUMBLE!!!

“Nevermind, just come real fast!” And with that, the pink pony dashed away.

Rarity turned to her frantic looking sister. “Oh gracious, I’d better see what’s going on. Stay safe, Sweetie Belle!” She made to leave, but felt a tugging of her fur by her sister.

“What’s happening, Rarity?!! Is it an earthquake?!”

“I’m not sure what it is but I don’t think an earthquake makes sounds like footsteps, darling! Now I’ll be back, please don’t worry, Sweetie Belle. I shan’t be long.”

Sweetie Belle reluctantly let go of the alabaster unicorn’s fur and watched as her sister ran towards the door and closed it abruptly behind her – leaving the younger sibling on her own in the boutique.

She felt alone and worried for the first time since first venturing into Equestria. Her eyes widened at even the smallest creaks and sounds coming from the boutique itself. The thundering pounds of the earth outside punched whimpers out of her. Grabbing her tail and stroking it, she closed her eyes as she eagerly anticipated the return of her sister or even the halt of the stomps coming from outside.

RAAAAAAAARRRRRRGHHHH!!!!

The unicorn screamed at the ferocious roar emanating from outside the shop. She was really frightened now. Wrapping herself up, the filly began to sob and whisper softly to herself.

“I-I-I want to go home…please…please just be a dream…”

“Anybody! Rarity…Sunset…please…whimper…”

Sweetie Belle continued to cry as the unknown terror persisted in shaking the ground and roaring fiercely. She didn’t want to hear anymore. Grabbing a nearby pillow, she buried her head into it; shutting out all other sounds than that of her weeping.

“Swe…Belle!” The filly heard a muffled cry of her name through the fabric of the pillow and loosened her grip on the pillow to open a bit of the airway to her ears.

“Sweetie Belle! Sweetie Belle!” The filly felt a touch of hooves against her, shaking her back and forth. The filly ceased her sobbing to sniffle while she hoisted her head out of the pillow to see what had been shaking her.

“Sweetie Belle! Are you ok?” Recognising the raspy voice, Sweetie Belle’s pupils refocused onto the body of Scootaloo. She whimpered at the sight of her and grabbed her in a tight hug, commencing her crying again.

Scootaloo, out of understanding of the situation, accepted the hug and attempted to comfort the desolate filly. “Don’t worry, Sweetie Belle! Me and Apple Bloom are here.”

“Whimper…cough…r-r-r-really?”

“O’ course, Sweetie Belle. No need ta fret now.” Apple Bloom’s words came from behind her. Breaking the hug while still sniffling occasionally, she turned her head to find Apple Bloom there beside her like Scootaloo. She had a friendly yet concerned smile on her face, something which still hinted that she too was a little scared.

“Don’t you…g-guys know what’s happening?”

“Can’t miss it.” And on cue, the ground shook coupled with a faint roar in the distance.

“Well…whimper…aren’t you scared?”

“Well, yeah but…there’s no reason ta be scared now that ah have ma best friends with me, right?”

“Sniffle…no, I-I guess not…” Sweetie Belle admitted. Her sorrowful trembling died down and her sadness reduced to just a wide frown. “I’m glad you girls came to save me.”

“Well technically, we’re not saving you. I still don’t know what’s going on. Apple Bloom and I were hanging out with Rainbow Dash when it happened and then we rushed straight over here. We’re just helping each other out like friends do,” Scootaloo stated.

“Well, I’m still really grateful to both of you.”

“Don’t mention it, Sweets. Now, how bout’ we get r’selves out o’ here?” suggested Apple Bloom.

“WHAT?! You mean out there?” cried Sweetie Belle.

“Hey, ah’m scared too. But AJ, my human sister that is, always taught me ta never be inside in an emergency an’ that’s just what we gotta do!”

Sweetie Belle looked at Apple Bloom’s serious face intently; its significance not even slightly watered down considering it was a pony looking at her. “Ok, l-let’s go.”

“That’s the spirit, Sweetie Belle.” Scootaloo added.

The trio emerged from the boutique to find a rather big crowd gathered around the centre of town. Although the trembling of the ground hadn’t stopped, it was a lot less violent. They rushed up to see the ruckus and gawked at the scene in front of them.

The princess along with her friends, and Rarity noted by Sweetie Belle, were fighting hand to hand with a wild beast of enormous size. Sweetie Belle noticed it had scales and a big long neck with wings jutting out from its sides. Its talons could cut ponies in half with a single slash. From all of her fiction back at CHS, Sweetie Belle knew this to be a dragon.

And they’re winning? The little unicorn couldn’t believe what she was witnessing; that a monstrous dragon was losing against her sister and her friends. Rainbow Dash looked to be giving the beast a pummelling, diving into it from high above whereas Rarity was using her magic to manipulate the objects nearby to add to their victory effort.

After a few minutes of fight, the dragon let out a final roar which died down almost immediately as a talon was sliced off my a sonic rainbooming Rainbow Dash, causing it to squeal in pain and subsequently fly off in retreat. A huge cheer came from the crowd save for the crusaders who were still gobsmacked.

Eventually, the ponies dispersed and Sweetie Belle watched as the six heroes hugged and went their separate ways too. Rarity came over to her sister.

“Are you alright, Sweetie Belle? That dragon was rather fierce.” Rarity asked, her voice quite relaxed yet still anxious.

“Yeah…but how on earth did you defeat a dragon?”

Rarity smiled. “I sometimes don’t know myself. But when you have friendship, anything is possible. Besides, it’s happened before. Don’t you remember when Spike turned into a big dragon?”

“Ummm…sure, I remember.”

“Well, that’s quite enough excitement for one day anyway. Let’s go back to having tea, Sweetie Belle.”

Sweetie Belle was still froze with shock. What just happened?


The treehouse had a rather quaint feel to it as it entered the gaze of Sunset Shimmer. It was always a welcome sight to see one for Sunset – it reminded her of when she too was a filly in Equestria dreaming of learning all there was to know about the beauty of magic. A past long forgotten by the red haired teen, consumed by all the treacheries she had committed.

Approaching the ladder that led up to treehouse, Sunset grabbed hold of the rope and put her full weight on the ladder; causing it to swing slightly. It was able to hold her; she had been up several times after all. Pulling herself over the top and onto the landing, she walked towards the entrance.

“Hey, are you girls there?”

A moment went before she got a reply. “I’m here. But Apple Bloom and Scootaloo aren’t.”

It didn’t take a genius to work out that Sweetie Belle had been the one to answer her. “Can I come in, Sweetie Belle?”

“Sure!” confirmed Sweetie Belle, quite happy at the thought of company.

Sunset opened the door and smiled at Sweetie Belle who seemed to be sitting down at the back wall, writing something. Upon Sunset’s entry, she returned the teen’s gesture.

“What are you working on?” asked Sunset as she made to sit beside the crusader.

“Oh just writing stuff,” was the reply. She seemed pretty private about it, Sunset noted.

“Cool. So where are the others?”

Sweetie Belle stopped writing for a moment to answer Sunset’s question. “Scootaloo was here but then Rainbow Dash stopped by on her way to some event at the school she had on and Scoots went with her.”

At school during the summer? I’ll bet it's her meteorology club she tries to hide from us.

“I haven’t seen Apple Bloom today. Perhaps she’s with Rainbow and Scootaloo?”

“I’m not sure. But I wanted to talk with Apple Bloom.”

That raised Sweetie Belle’s attention. “Why?”

“Applejack is worried about her. And so am I. I believe there’s something that she’s not telling us and I wanted to confront her about it. Do you know anything, Sweetie Belle?”

The crusader hesitated. “No, I don’t, sorry.” She turned back to her writing, dropping the pencil a few times as she wrote.

Sunset peered closer to what Sweetie Belle was writing without making it seem that she was peeking at her work. She was a little shocked. Normally, Sweetie Belle was the best at handwriting out of her friends and Sunset recalled numerous times when her teacher had commended her for it. At the moment however, she was clearly having trouble holding the pencil and whatever she was writing was incomprehensible and illegible.

I wonder…

“You know, I was just thinking the other day. Things are much easier with your horn aren’t they?”

“Oh, Sunset, you don’t know the half of it. I can’t even write…” She trailed off as the realisation hit her of what she had just heard - and more importantly what she had just replied with. “Oh no…”

Sunset smiled slyly.

Gotcha!