• Published 15th Jun 2012
  • 6,715 Views, 150 Comments

Grow Up, Apple Bloom - Lux

Apple Bloom makes a desperate attempt to get her cutie mark.

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Meeting the Crusaders

Chapter 8 – Meeting the Crusaders

Apple Bloom returned to the barn area and helped her sister, Applejack, and her brother, Big Macintosh, unload the apples from the cart that were collected in the apple bucking competition. The newly minted mare was beaming at the fact that she had just beaten her sister in bucking apples, but she tried to act humble so not to hurt her sister’s feelings.

“Apple Bloom,” Granny Smith called from the house, “yer friends came by. Ah’ told them you were out helpin’ in the field, so in think they’re in yer clubhouse in the woods.”

“Thanks, Granny Smith,” Apple Bloom said as she bid her siblings goodbye and trotted through the orchard to the clubhouse.

“Where is Apple Bloom,” Scootaloo said as she stood outside the tree house, “she’s never late to a Crusader’s meeting.”

“Granny Smith said she was working with the others,” Sweetie Belle said.

“I know I know,” the orange Pegasus said with a huff, “I just want to get started getting our cutie marks, that’s all.”

“Hey,” Sweetie Belle said in a high pitched squeak, “did,’t Apple Bloom say she had a idea about how to get our marks easy and she’d be showing it to us.”

“You’re right, Sweetie Belle. I just hope that Apple Bloom didn’t try anything dumb like the last time when she got all those cutie marks and was acting crazy.”

The two then saw a silhouette in the distance of a pony.

“That looks like Apple Bloom,” the white unicorn said.

“Nah, it can’t be. That pony looks more like a mare. Maybe it’s Applejack,” Scootaloo said.

The two waited as the pony shaped image came closer until finally the blurry shape became clear.

“Apple Bloom,” the two friends said in shock and disbelief.

“Um… hi Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo,” the mare said nervously.

“What happened to you,” the Pegasus filly said, “you’re all tall and stuff.”

“It’s a long story,” Apple Bloom said.

“Well, I want to hear it,” the unicorn said.

“Me too,” Scootaloo replied.

“Ok then,” Apple Bloom said, “here it goes.”

Apple Bloom explained about her idea she got from talking with her friends and Applejack, how she got the potion from Zecora, and how she was now a mare.

“So, that’s what happened,” Apple Bloom said, trying to catch her breath after telling the whole story.

“So, it didn’t work. You didn’t get your cutie mark,” Sweetie Belle said.

“Nope,” Apple Bloom said, putting her head down.

“So how long are you going to be… you know … a mare,” Scootaloo said.

“Ah’ don’ know Scootaloo,” Apple Bloom said, “Applejack told me she’s gonna talk to Zecora an’ see if she has an antidote. So it could be a few days I’m like this or longer.”

“Could you possibly be stuck like that forever,” Sweetie Belles said looking worried.

“Ah’ don’ know,” Apple Bloom said. The earth pony was thinking about that herself ever since she became a mare. She liked that she was a mare, feeling strong and beautiful. Yet the possibility of her friends being younger than her now and the fact that she wouldn’t be able to return to school scared her. The fact that she was a mare without a mark also didn’t sit well.

“But come on yall,” apple Bloom said trying to cheer up the two, “We’re still friends, right?”

“Um…Sure,” the two said, albeit with some uneasiness to their voice. Apple Bloom wondered if that was due to them now having a mare as a friend without a mark.

“So,” Sweetie Belle said, “do we have some ideas for our marks?”

“Ah got nothing’,” Apple Bloom said. The past events had sapped Apple Bloom of any ideas for getting her mark. Any ideas she did have were quickly tossed after this grand failure of an idea to grow older to get a cutie mark.

“How about we go into town to see if anypony needs our help. Maybe we’ll get our marks that way.”

“Sorry, Crusaders,” Apple Bloom said, “but Applejack said ah’ can’t go into town after what happened. Ah’ can only go with her an’ she’s busy around the farm an’ goin’ to Zecora’s.”

“But you’re a mare,” Sweetie Belle said, “Aren’t you supposed to do… you know… mare things like Rarity does?”

“Yeah,” Scootaloo chimed in, “why does Applejack have to come with you?”

“Ah’m sorry, but ah’ already upset mah sister with what ah did, an’ ah’ don’ want to upset her anymore. But if you two want to try an’ git yer marks in town, ah’m not gonna stop ya.”

“Well,” Scootaloo said a little upset that the Cursaders would be missing a member, “fine then! Come on, Sweetie Belle. We’ve got our cutie marks to get!”

“Sorry Apple Bloom,” Sweetie Belle said as she got into the wagon attached to Scootaloo’s scooter, “we’ll come by tomorrow to see if you are able to go Crusading with us.”

With a buzz of Scootaloo’s wings, the two took off into the orchard. Apple Bloom walked into the empty clubhouse. There were several sheets of papers attached to the walls fluttering in the breeze. Some were lists of things the Crusaders tried without success; others were plans from past activities like trying to get Cheerilee and Big Mac together.

Looking at the clubhouse, Apple Bloom was upset. She was upset that her friends and fellow Crusaders had abandoned her for the sake of getting their marks in town. But as she thought, her anger turned to sadness.

“Ah’ really messed things up this time,” she said as tears formed in her eyes, “ah’ didn’t git mah cutie mark, ah’ upset Zecora, ah’ upset Big Macintosh an’ Applejack, and ah’ now mah friends are gone. Oh why did ah’ do such a thing?”

At last Apple Bloom couldn’t stay in the clubhouse any longer. She dashed out of the tree house and broke into a run, crying her eyes out. She felt trapped, a prisoner in her body, neither completely a mare nor a filly. She felt like a monster, unloved by all.