• Published 31st Jul 2016
  • 925 Views, 29 Comments

Legend of Everfree: The Dysfunctional Seven - The Fan Without a Face



As Canterlot High enjoys it's trip out in the Everfree, a second, smaller group of students draws near. Through several mishaps, the two groups find themselves uniting, prepared to face what monsters may come...

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Seven on a Bus and in the Woods

“How did I get myself roped into this?”

That was the question being pondered by a young individual named Coalstone, currently standing at a bus stop with a small black backpack at his feet. His gray eyes scanned over the stop, taking note of five other individuals of varying sizes waiting as well. And...well, they weren’t exactly being quiet about it. At least one guy looked like he was ready to strangle someone, while another looked as if he had just inhaled an entire sack of sugar. Odd bunch to say the least, and at the moment, he wasn’t the least bit interested in talking with any single one of them.

Quickly opening his backpack, he searched through it before wrapping his hands around a red and black covered book with the face of a horned demon on the front. Leaning against a wooden post for support, he began reading, trying to drown out the noise his fellow students were making.

“Here’s to hoping this little excursion goes by quickly. I’m not in the mood to put up with any of these guys’ crap.”

At that moment, there was a loud bang as an ancient, misfiring pickup truck appeared in the distance. The students at the bus stop gazed curiously as the lumbering rustbucket approached them. Suddenly, the truck lurched to a stop and with it a heaping cloud of dust that flew ahead, coating the nearby students. Among the crowd, a red-haired japanese boy spat out a mouthful of dust and grit and glared at the truck.

“Pff! What a moron!” he muttered under his breath.

Green Sage, who was standing nearby, turned to him and shook his head as he let out a frustrated grunt. Green Sage was a tall, long green-haired guy with a commanding presence. He rarely spoke, but when he did, it was not a pleasant experience. Though his eyes were green like his hair, they were cold and dark like a wintry blizzard. Looking into them was like looking into a cold bottomless pit. He frequently wore black pants and a black vest that only enhanced his austere persona. Students and even teachers knew well to stay out of his way.

Coalstone, meanwhile, only growled while looking at his book, now clad in dirt. He let out a light snort like a bull in response.

“And with that, we’re already off to a terrific start!”

Quickly dusting off the tome in his hand, he returned it to his backpack to avoid further damage and took another second to observe the other students currently present. Of those present, he caught a glimpse of one green-haired guy that he vaguely recognized. Green Sage.

He huffed. Despite having only attending Canterlot High for about a week, he caught glimpses of the school’s resident tough guy and he was...unimpressed to say the least, though he’d never bothered to share a word with him, believing he wasn’t worth the effort. Ironically enough, they seemed to have a similar choice in clothing, with his black jacket and fingerless gloves -- though Coal normally balanced out his clothes with a white muscle shirt, dark green pants and black sneakers. Probably the most eye catching thing about Coalstone himself was his stone gray, wild mohawk-like hair. Coupled with his heavily muscled physique and height, he looked rather intimidating.

He scoffed at Green Sage’s austere demeanor.

“Well...as long as he doesn’t give me any trouble, we should be just fine.”

Looking over the others, he merely sighed.

“Though, I get the feeling my book won’t be of any use on the bus ride either. Here’s to hoping that I don’t have to see much of these guys for the rest of the trip.”

At the edge of the bus stop, the passenger door of the rusty pickup truck opened with a squeal and out climbed a tanned boy, who paused and surveyed the scene.

“Hah, what a cheery lot you all are!” he remarked at the crowd standing before him. “I’ve gotta feeling we’re gonna get along just fine!”

“Ahem!” a broad, southern accent issued from the back seat. “Are y’all gonna help me out, or are ya just gonna stand there?”

The boy reached back in and pulled his seat forward. A tanned and toned girl gracefully climbed out and stood before him.

“Thanks, Autumn.”

She turned towards the truck.

“Thanks for the ride Big Mac!”

The muscular guy behind the wheel started the truck up with a nod.

“Eeeyup!”

He turned the wheel and the truck turned around and sped down the road, leaving a trail of dust in its wake. Applejack and Autumn watched the truck disappear down the dirt road until it disappeared out of sight. Suddenly, a pink girl stuck her head out from a window of the bus nearby.

“Applejack!” she cried. “I thought you weren’t gonna come, so I was worried because I thought that if you didn’t make it, you wouldn’t be able to go to the camp; and if you didn’t go to the camp, you wouldn’t be there; and if you weren’t gonna be there, you were gonna miss it; and if you were gonna miss it, then I would’ve had to come home early and throw you a ‘sorry-you-missed-an-awesome-exciting-camp-experience’ party!”

“Pinkie! Ha! Breathe girl,” Applejack replied, rolling her eyes. “We’re comin’. Don’t you worry ‘bout that.”

Together, Applejack and Autumn climbed onto the bus, where Celestia was marking students off on her roster. She nodded to AJ as she went past, but when Autumn went to pass her, she stopped him.

“I’m sorry, Autumn, but this bus is full to capacity,” she said. “You’ll have to board the next one.”

“But...but Applejack just climbed on and she was fine!” Autumn protested. “I’m just one more guy!”

Applejack climbed back out and laid a hand on his shoulder.

“It’ll be alright Autumn,” she murmured softly. “Just board the next bus and ah’ll see ya when we make camp.”

Autumn looked into her eyes. Reassured, he nodded and apologized to Celestia.

“I’ll see you at camp then, A.J!”

“Not if ah see ya first!”

His hazel eyes met her lime-green eyes.

“Promise?”

“Of course, ah’ll be thinkin’ of ya.”

He threw his arms around her quickly and then climbed off the bus with a heavy heart.

Back at the bus stop, Coalstone looked blankly at a light-colored guy across from him wearing a fisherman’s hat and a camera and a pair of binoculars hanging around his neck. He had a big goofy grin on his face.

“Dibbs on not sitting with that guy,” Coal muttered to himself.

If the guy heard him, he didn't show it.

Coal remained quiet as he made his way to the line of students waiting to board the bus, trying to distract himself from the noise around him.

After saying goodbye to A.J, Autumn Glow begrudgingly went to join the others waiting in line to enter the next bus. Upon reaching the back of the line, Autumn noticed a kid wearing some kind of weird body armor. This guy seemed kind of quiet, observing the other students.

“Hey, nice costume there, Bro!” Autumn said, approaching the guy. “I’m Autumn Glow, but just call me Autumn.”

The guy said nothing but eyed Autumn in a way that creeped him out.

“Yo, you got a thing for staring at people or something? Keep that up and people are gonna think you’re weirder than you look.”

Autumn turned his back on the guy and would’ve dismissed him, only the guy muttered something behind him that made him whirl back around.

“You mind repeating that, pal?”

The guy glared at him.

“I said you’re one to talk. You’re the one that looks like the Appleloosan High’s Mascot.”

Autumn walked up to him.

“You know what? I don’t like your attitude. Maybe I should change it for you!”

Coal tried to keep his attention on his notebook, though the shouting behind him was starting to get on his nerves.

“Maybe you should just wipe that smug off your face and we’ll see who’s attitude gets changed!”

A tense silence reigned among the students as Autumn and the other guy glared at each other, standing chest-to-chest.

“Oh? And what are you going to do about it, Vegeta?”

At that moment, they heard heavy footsteps approaching them, the eerie sound causing them to stop mid-sentence. They slowly turned to see who it was and saw Green Sage walking towards them, his face as cold as stone.

“What are you two babies fighting about this time?” he said in a low tone.

Autumn glared at him with fire in his eyes.

“What did you just call us!?”

Green Sage looked back at them, his expression unchanged.

“You two fight just like little children. It’s funny, really...considering you think that you are so ‘grown up’ because you both go to high school.”

Autumn growled.

“You--you take that back!”

Green Sage folded his arms and closed his eyes as he lowered his head and huffed.

“Why should I take back something that is the truth? You should really see yourselves right now.”

Then, his eyes opened as a twinkle appeared in his eye.

“Say...that gives me an idea!”

He reached into his pocket, pulled out his phone and held it out in front of him with a grin on his face.

“Wh-what are you doing?” the other guy exclaimed, his eyes widening.

Green Sage pressed a few buttons on his phone as he gave a low chuckle.

“Making memories.”

Then, there was a click and then a sound of a camera. Night and Autumn gasped in fury. Green Sage had just taken a picture of them locking foreheads with one another! Green Sage laughed.

“And now to put it on my blog post…”

He looked at his phone screen, a smile of satisfaction written across his face.

“‘Out babysitting the children’. Ah, pure poetry!”

Suddenly, a huge hand reached around him and grabbed his phone from his hand. He blinked in surprise and spun around. Behind him, Coalstone held his phone and looked back at him with a stern expression. Sage of course didn’t look so happy, glaring at the larger student before him.

“Coalstone...give me back my phone, now.”

Coal however didn’t look especially happy at the prospect. Instead, he looked over the phone and the picture on the screen. Without a word, he quickly went to work deleting the photo.

“Okay…” Green Sage stepped towards him, “now wait just a minute! You can’t just -- !”

“I just did,” Coal muttered before shoving the phone back into Sage’s hands. “Now why don’t you just get on that bus before you make us later than we already are.”

Green Sage thought to protest, but given the fact that the awaiting bus, along with the lingering students, was still within earshot, he simply took the phone.

“This isn’t over, Coalstone!” he spat.

With that, he stormed off towards the bus where the other students were waiting in line to enter. Coal turned to Autumn and Night.

“What are you guys staring at? Get in line so we can get this trip over with!”

Coal walked away, leaving Autumn and the armored guy watching him go. Warily, the two of them then eyed each other as they parted, not speaking a single word.

***

Meanwhile, Green Sage irritatedly stood behind a light-colored boy with a fisherman’s hat as he waited to enter the bus.

Come on! Stop looking at the scenery and just go already!” he thought as he rolled his eyes.

Finally, the boy put his camera and binoculars back in the pocket of his orange coat, adjusted his hat and went inside the bus. Green Sage followed close behind. After the boy took his seat by the window, Green Sage made his way through the rows of students to the very back of the bus, where he found an empty row. He sat down in one of the seats and placed his gear on the seats on either side of him.

“Ah, finally!

Wincing from the constant chattering in the bus, he opened his backpack and took out a book, scanning each sentence in a desperate attempt to ignore the others around him.

Coal, having finally boarded the bus, quietly made his way to the back, noting that Green Sage had taken one of the seats. Ignoring him, he took the other empty back seat, putting down his bag. The two of them eyed each other angrily before Green Sage returned to his book and Coal reached down and opened his backpack. Quickly digging through it, he pulled out a notebook and proceeded to scan its contents, focusing his attention on what was at hand.

Another long day…” he thought as he let out a sigh. “Hopefully nothing else happens on our way to camp.

A scrawny boy wearing a labcoat squeezed himself through the rows of seats, trying his best to avoid eye contact with anyone. On the first hand, he had a small metal box emblazoned with two gears. On the other, a small bundle of tools that he seemed to never part with. Finally, after noticing the vacant spot beside Green Sage, he sat down, though he seemed ready to jump out at the first word.

“Excuse me, sir?” the boy asked timidly, motioning to the empty seat next to Green Sage, “Is this seat taken?”

Green Sage looked up at him through squared, window-like glasses, his eyebrows lowered.

“Who’s asking?”

The boy gulped.

“Um... Rusty Gears, sir.”

Green Sage’s eyes narrowed.

“This seat is taken,” he said in a low, cold tone. “I’d suggest you find a different one.”

With that, he returned to reading his book, trying his best to ignore the chattering around him.

“Oh… okay…”

Rusty scurried off towards the front, near the emergency exits, his tools clattering about in the zip-pocket that he always held. FlashTruth, who was sitting next to the window across from him, motioned for him to take one of the empty seats on the other side.

“Thanks,” Rusty quietly said as he sat in the seat next to the window.

As he sat down, he sighed as he unclasped the metal box, making sure the gift inside was unharmed.

“Hey stick-boy, what’s that ya got?”

Rusty glanced over towards the source of the teasing: a hulking, beastly, sweaty… thing.

“Y’know...y-you shouldn’t be teasing people like that.”

The bully cracked their knuckles.

“Oh, you’re in for it!”

Rusty shrugged it off as he re-locked the case.

“Suit yourself.”

Suddenly, the bully raced out of his seat, targeting Rusty as he charged his way through the bus.

Just as everyone watching thought that the scrawny kid was a goner, something strange happened: Seconds before the supposed impact, Rusty had somehow managed to yet again unlock the case, pulling out the device cradled inside.

Everyone gasped as the beast of a person slammed into Rusty, a sickly cracking sound echoing throughout the bus.

Across from them, FlashTruth cried out in fright, thinking that Rusty was hurt. Up front, the driver yelled back, “WHATEVER IT IS YOU KIDS ARE DOING BACK THERE, STOP IT!”

The bully peeled himself off Rusty, expecting to find him crushed under the weight. Instead, he found himself staring face to face with a mechanical marvel.

“I told ya not to tease people,” Rusty said as he disabled the shield.

Fuming, the bully went ahead and took a swing aimed at Rusty’s head, only to find his arm wrapped in an iron-like grip. Quickly turning around, he found himself looking up about two inches and found Coalstone looking down at him with his stone-colored eyes.

“Listen up, ‘cause I’m only gonna say this once. We’re stuck on this bus with each other until we get to the camp and I’m sure we’d all like for this trip to be as pleasant as possible.”

As he spoke he tightened his grip, forcefully pushing the bully’s arm back, meriting a painful groan from the teen.

“To that end, I’d appreciate it if we not complicate matters, ‘cause some jerk decides to try some ‘Alpha Dog nonsense’ on someone else. So...”

His other hand quickly wrapped around the bully’s face, latching onto it like a hook, before shoving him into the nearest empty seat.

“Sit your sorry little butt down and stay quiet, and we won’t have any trouble. You good with that?”

Getting no response, he snorted as he silently made his way back to his seat before picking up his notebook and resuming his pet project. The remainder of the bus occupants did not saying anything.

Several rows ahead, Rusty laid back in his seat with a smile on his face. However, the bully started back on his feet once again.

“I’m not gonna be beaten by some weakling like you! Come at me and we’ll see if you’re--!”

At that moment, the bully was knocked back by a flying book directly to the face. Rusty turned to look towards the source and saw that Green Sage had thrown his book clear across the bus. Green Sage sat glaring at the bully with a low growl.

“Now...you will kindly give me my book back...NOW.”

The bully rubbed his face and growled back.

“Why should I, Four-eyes!? Who’s gonna make me, huh?”

Green Sage adjusted his glasses, the sunlight flashing across the lens like a bolt of lightning.

“What was that you called me...again?” he snarled, his voice low and cold.

The bully’s tough demeanor quickly faded away, replaced by dread as Green Sage slowly rose to his feet and walked to him, his metal boots clanking on the floor of the bus with each step he took. When he reached him, he grabbed the bully by the collar, lifting him up.

“I dare you to say that name again in my face!” he said, pulling him so that they almost touched foreheads.

The bully scrambled to set himself free.

“I...I…!”

“What?”

Sage, however, quickly found a familiar black gloved hand on his shoulder, finding Coalstone now glaring at him, increasing his grip, “I thought I just said no more idiotic shows of bravado. Why don’t both of you idiots sit your asses down, before I hammer you into your seats like a couple of railroad spikes.”

However, the driver seemed to have enough.

“Alright that’s it! You!”

He pointed at the smart mouthed bully.

“Get off this bus if you’re thinkin’ about doing that again ‘cause I ain’t having you cause any more disruptions!”

Before the bully could say anything, Coal let go of Sage and quickly grabbed him by the back of his shirt, easily pulling him with one arm to his seat. Then, he soundly placed him in it and buckled him in.

“There! Now, sit down, shut up and don’t do anything. Got IT!”

The bully looked up at him with terror in his eyes.

“Y-y-yes!”

Coalstone nodded with a frown.

“Good.”

He turned to Green Sage.

“And as for you…!”

Green Sage turned away with a huff.

“What’s the matter, don’t feel like trying scare anyone anymore?”

Green Sage turned slightly, his beady eyes staring back at him through his glasses.

“What? Don’t like my tactics?”

He turned away, tilted his head back and shrugged.

“Well, if you’re offended, that’s your problem.”

Coalstone’s teeth gritted as he felt his anger growing. Green Sage turned to look directly into his eyes and added, “Besides, I despise you “goody two-shoe” types! If your objective is to lecture me about ‘being nice to everybody’, then you’re sadly disappoint--”

His words were immediately silenced as Coalstone closed the distance and easily lifted Sage up by his vest, pulling him directly to his face.

“Why don’t we clear up some things, Green Sage. First of all, cut out your little tough guy act? ‘Cause it ain’t gonna work on me. Second I’m not a goody two shoes, I frankly don’t care what you do. All I want is for this ride to not be so damn noisy. So kindly do me a favor and shut the hell up, before I make it so you’ll be sneezing up your teeth.”

Coal then let go of Sage and made his way back to his seat, picking up his notebook and commencing with reading again.

FlashTruth picked up the book and passed it to Green Sage, shaking. After hurriedly giving him the book, he quickly retreated back to his seat and sat as silent as a mouse. After Green Sage retrieved his book, he and the bully returned to their respective seats: the bully breathing heavily while Green Sage sat back comfortably and continued reading his book.

Glancing towards Green Sage, Rusty’s jaw dropped in awe.

“Wow… um, thanks.”

Green Sage looked towards him with the same cold stare.

“That wasn’t for you. That was for me.”

He returned to his book once more with a huff.

At the same time, Rusty shrunk back into his seat, keeping a firm hand over the case.

“Hey, nice job. Can’t stand idiots like him. My name’s Yan. What’s yours?”

Rusty shrunk even further into his seat. By this point, one would’ve thought that the boy had liquefied.

“I’m… Rusty…”

“Not you. The other guy. Nice to meet you, though, Rusty.”

Rusty looked back at him with a puzzled expression.

“You...too…?”

From across the bus, FlashTruth turned to Rusty and leaned across his seat.

“Hey, Rusty! I’m FlashTruth!”

He looked down and noticed the box in Rusty’s hands.

“Hey, that’s was so cool! What is it?”

Rusty looked down at his box and then up at FlashTruth.

“Oh, it’s a protective force shield,” Rusty replied. “I’m planning on giving it to my girlfriend once we arrive at camp.”

FlashTruth smiled brightly.

“Cool!”

“Anyway,” Yen said, turning to Green Sage. “Hey you, guy who threw that book! What's your name?”


Green Sage looked up from his book and stared at him. After a full minute, he returned to his book.

Yan muttered under his breath, “Wow, what a dufus!”

Green Sage’s head slightly rose.

“Just because I didn’t reply, you’re now mad at me?” he said in a low tone.

Yan looked squarely at Green Sage.

“Well...yeah! It’s only common courtesy to respond when someone asks your name, ya know!”

Green Sage glanced back at him menacingly. He closed his book and replied, “Well, where I come from, the common courtesy is to be left alone. Now, if you don’t mind…!”

He opened his book and returned to his reading.

Rusty’s gaze switched between Yan and Green Sage.

“Um, maybe if you two just…ignore each other?”

Green Sage looked up at Rusty, who once again shrunk back in his seat.

“Finally,” Green Sage breathed out, “the first sensible thing that I’ve heard all day!”

Rusty breathed a sigh of relief. He hated fighting...and, really, anything above a certain point of violence. Yan grumbled something about dodgeball and fell asleep.


Inside the bus, students excitedly chattered among themselves while Green Sage winced and squirmed, trying desperately to tune out the noise. Finally, he could take it no more. He opened up his backpack, took out an ipod with earphones, placed the earphones on his ears and played his music as he laid back and closed his eyes.

Yan tossed and turned in his sleep and started to mutter something about slow trucks. Suddenly, he yelled up to the front, “Hey… when we gonna start moving already!?”

All the other students turned to look at Yan with weird looks on their faces. Rusty, who was sitting next to him nudged him awake.

“Hey, wake up.”

Yan stirred awake and gave Rusty the stink eye. “What?”

“Look around you. You’re dreaming.”

He looked at him for a second, then he said, “So if i punch you, then it won’t count?”

Rusty gasped in shock, unclasping the case behind his back in preparation.

Green Sage tore one of his earbuds from his ears.

“You were so loud I could hear you straight through my music. Now that’s saying something.”

Rusty grunted under his breath, “Huh, and I was whispering.”

Green Sage huffed.

“I wasn’t talking to you. I was talking to that muttering redhead over there!”

“Oh hey, it’s Anon!” Yan exclaimed sarcastically. “How are you doing, No Name?”

Green Sage huffed and placed his earphones back on his ears.

“Whatever.”

Rusty glanced back over to Yan, who was once again, sleeping.

Autumn was growing impatient.

“What the heck’s going on?!” he raged, punching the seat in front of him. “The other bus is probably half-way there by now!”

He sat back begrudgingly and folded his arms.

“And I miss my Jackie,” he trailed off quietly.

In the seat in front of Autumn, Yan turned around and glared at him angrily.

“What the heck, man!” he roared. “Can’t a guy get any sleep around here!?”

Beside Yan, Rusty shrieked in surprise, immediately lurching back in the seat.

“What the -- !”

Across from them, FlashTruth looked at the three of them warily.

“Uh...is there a problem, guys…?”

Autumn realized that he had overreacted.

“Oh, sorry about that, dude. I’m just a little frazzled. I mean, it’s been like fifteen minutes. Why haven’t we set off yet?”

“Heck if I know! I’m just trying to get some sleep. Anyway, can I have the name of the person who woke me up at least?”

Autumn tensed up, preparing for the worst. “Um...Autumn Glow, but just call me Autumn. How’s about yourself?”

“My names Yan. So, who the heck’s this Jackie?”

Autumn blushed faintly and looked avidly out of the window.

“She’s a girl on the other bus,” he replied dejectedly. “Her name’s Applejack. I know that it’s only been 20 minutes, but I already miss her!”

Yan nodded.

“Yeah, I feel ya, buddy. Wait...”

He smirked in sudden realization.

“You have a crush on this Applejack, don’t you?”

Autumn blushed.

“Well...I guess so. I like her, she likes me...I mean, I think she does, well I hope so...”

Autumn shook his head and changed the subject.

“Hey, enough about me. What about you? You got an eye for someone?”

Yan turned to the side.

“W-well… Fluttershy’s...pretty cute, I guess.”

Autumn leaned forward.

“Wh-what was that?”

Yan cleared his throat.

“I said that…”

He tilted his head a bit as his voice grew quieter.

“...that Fluttershy’s...kinda…cute, I guess.”

Autumn chuckled knowingly.

“Seems like not everyone at Canterlot is a complete drop-out! You’re all right, Yan.”

“Thanks,” Yan said with a smile. “You're not so bad either.”

Yan glanced over at Rusty, who was currently quivering in his seat.

“Rusty?” he began, “You all right there?”

Rusty’s eyes darted about the bus. Clearly, he was still rather distraught from Yan’s earlier outburst.

“I’m...I’m fine,” Rusty stammered, easing his emotional tension.

“Yo dude, what’s eating you?” Autumn asked, leaning over the seats in front of him. “Is it your first day or somethin’?”

Rusty turned to Autumn.

“N-not really,” he replied, “it’s just…who I am…”

Autumn stared quizzically at the olive boy but decided he wanted nothing to do with him. He lowered his seat and pulled out his phone. Looking at his notifications, he saw that he already had a message from A.J. Smiling slightly, he texted her back. Hearing chuckles behind him, Yan turned around and peered over his seat.

“Hey, Autumn, what you doing back there?”

Autumn started and quickly turned his phone off.

“Uhm, n-nothing! Nothing important,” he muttered feebly.

He chuckled and said “ Sure, lover boy.”

Autumn glared threateningly at Yan. However he was blushing a bit too much for it to be that scary. “W-what’s it to you?”

“ Nothing.”

Autumn waited until Yan had stopped looking, then turned his phone back on and continued texting.

During the conversation, Night sat at the front with a sketchbook on his lap. He felt a gentle pride in his work as he gazed at the drawing he had worked on overnight. Night usual sketched at nights when he couldn’t sleep, which was more often than not. He found that art was an avenue that he could properly express himself through. Most importantly, it kept his mind from relapsing into his past.

He kept his eyes focused on his sketch but was mindful of the conversations behind him. He silently categorized each of the six individual characters involved. When the bully confronted Rusty and Green Sage and Coalstone stopped him, Night noted the timid voice and a cold, darker-sounding voice mixed with a broad commanding voice.

“Hmm...from what I hear, it seems that the timid-sound one directly behind me is much more intelligent than what others think he is,” Night thought, pausing from his sketch. “The other two to my left sound as if they’ve met each other at least once before...and they’ve been butting heads ever since. The cold-sound one also seems intelligent but in a different way. The other sounds as if he’s strong but considerate to others. Well, Night, let’s see how you did…”

He turned around just enough to catch a glimpse of the heated conversation behind him. He nodded and turned back to his sketch.

“Looks like I was right! Not bad, Night. Not bad.”

Coalstone meanwhile only growled lightly as he listened to some of the other patrons talk about their respective crushes.

“And here I thought that that kind of conversation was reserved for the lunch table when everyone else can’t hear it!” Coal muttered under his breath. “Sheesh!”

His gaze quickly turned to his note book as he pulled out a pen, tracing over a blueprint for what appeared to be a sort of fountain of sorts, shaped like a Griffon and Dragon battling each other. The sight of which brought a smile to his otherwise rock like face, as he went over the specs, “Okay so I want the water to come out of the Dragon’s mouth to simulate fire, but should I have anything for the Griffon? Perhaps making water flow waterfall style out of the base like it was lava. That would certainly look interesting.”

Adding some notes to his book to bookmark down those little details he took another look “Haven’t even been at this school for a week and I already can’t stand most of my classmates. And they expect me to make friends with these clowns, I almost felt like punching two of them a minute ago.”

Turning back to his sketch for a moment a new thought entered his head, “I wonder if I can find any high quality rock at this camp. Not enough to make anything big, but maybe a couple of small nicknacks perhaps. Least that way I can stay busy for the week.”

Eventually the second bus got underway and under Coal’s watchful, and intimidating eye, everyone settled down and chattered softly amongst themselves. Green Sage read his book, ignoring everyone. Coal and Night were focused on their sketches, Rusty was preoccupied in thought, idly gazing out of the window at the passing landscape, Yan was napping again and Autumn was texting up his girl.

Flashtruth, was leafing through his wilderness survival picture guide, looking at tips to fighting off a hungry bear. He looked around the bus for someone to talk to, but everyone seemed busy. He sighed, and closed his eyes.

“I wonder if I’ll make any friends here.” He wondered. “These guys don’t look like opening up anytime soon. This is not like my old school. Back there, everyone got along just fine. Nerds, loners, hippies, heck even with the tough guys! They all got along just fine with each other! Why can’t these guys?”

Before anyone could say anything else, a loud bag was heard, before the bus found itself being brought to a screeching halt, causing some of the students to fly face first into the seats in front of them. This included Coalstone, whose notebook flew underneath the seats while his fact impacted the seat.

Roaring in anger, he pulled himself out, rubbing his slightly sore forehead, “What the heck was that all about?”

Some of the other students had similar questions, including Autumn, whose latest text had been turned into gibberish, thanks in part to the jerking and his poor spell check. He glared at the text. He had intended writing We’ll be at camp soon, but when he picked his phone off the ground, it now read, We’ll, beat cat at noon. “Great, that’s just fantastic,”

The driver quickly opened up the door and looked outside, grunting in frustration to himself before pulling back into the bus, “Bad news boys, thanks to these oh so reliable country roads, we managed to get ourselves a flat tire.”

“Seriously, you mean we’re stuck out here?”

The driver sighed, “Yep and unfortunately this bus doesn’t come with a spare tire. So we’d have to wait for a tow truck.” that merited greater shouts and a few choice words being thrown around.

“Screw that, I’m not staying on this bus for another few hours while some grease monkey takes his sweet time getting here.”

“I need to get to the camp, I have plans with some of my friends.”

The driver felt compelled to plug up his ears, before quickly taking note of a nearby sign, before standing up, “Okay listen up. See that sign out there, we’re roughly two miles from the camp grounds. Plenty short enough for you guys to hike up to the camp yourselves.”

As there were more roars of protests the driver quickly pulled out a parchment, “This here is a map that should take you guys to the camp no problem. As long as you follow this map you should make it there in about 45 minutes, an hour tops.”

“Sweet!” Autumn replied, grabbing the map. “Sure beats waiting in a bus with a murderous psychopath.” He shot a nervous glance at Coal who loomed over him. “Uhh, I didn’t mean you buddy, I was talking about that Green Sage guy, what’s his problem?”

“ Well, I’m sure not staying. Let’s go guys.”

“Hold up. “ Coal interjected. “Somebody’s got to read the map, and I don’t trust lover boy over here with it.”

“Haha, this guy is funny!” Autumn chuckled sarcastically. “Besides, I failed my orienteering class, so someone probably should take it.”

“I..I can read the map,” FlashTruth replied, raising his hand.

Autumn gazed at him in silence for a couple of seconds.

“Are you sure you can handle this?” he eventually responded.

FlashTruth quickly thought to himself.

"Hmm, that might be the best way to become their friend, and when I’m their friend, they will also be friends with each other!

“Yes, I can!” he declared.

Autumn looked around the boys assembled around him.

“Guys, what do you think,” he asked. “Or does someone else want to?”

Yan shrugged.

“As long as he doesn’t mess up, I’m fine with it,” he replied.

Rusty caught up with the rest of the group, wildly waving a book about.

“I could help!”

“Oh yeah? How well can you read a map?”

“Eh, decently. I mean, I was practically a living GPS while my family was on vacation. Photographic memory, y’know?”

Coal decided to chime in.

“Fine. Then Flash can hold the map while Rusty helps direct. Everyone good with that? Good. Let’s go already!” he muttered as he quietly retrieved his notebook from under the seats and put it back in his bag.

FlashTruth cocked his head to the side.

“Well, I have something better than a photographic memory...real photos!” he thought with a wide grin. “This should be a breeze! Project FRIENDSHIP is a go!”

Green Sage, who was standing in the background all the while, only looked away and huffed.

“Well, guess I’ll have to tag along,” he muttered to himself.

Rusty strolled to the front of the crowd, studying the map closely from Flash’s hands.

“Well,” he began, “the shortest route seems to lead…”

He twirled his finger in the air, before he pointed slightly to the right.

“That way!”

“What are we waiting for then?” Autumn huffed impatiently. “Lead on, so we can get there as soon as possible.”

The group proceeded into the woods, following a dirt path that cut through the deep wooded area. The collective group followed each word their guide said. Though some, like Sage and Coal to a lesser extend, clearly weren’t as confident in Rusty or Flash as the others.

They continued to walk in relative silence for about twenty or so minutes, when it soon became apparent that some in their party were becoming more than a little restless.

Sage in particular was becoming increasingly peeved.

“Hey, Cameraman!” he called from the back. “Are you sure you’re reading that map right? Because it feels like we’ve been walking around in circles. If we’re lost because of your incompetence, I swear I’ll make you regret it!”

He emphasized his point by grabbing a nearby overhanging branch and ripping it from the tree’s trunk, causing it to make a loud snap. Rusty jumped a little in fright, turned and glared at Green Sage with fury. Sage simply shrugged it off and kept walking.

“Don’t worry!” Flash replied. “I know exactly where we’re going!”

He winced.

“Even though I really don’t,” he finished in his head.

“Come on guys,” Autumn complained. “You said you could handle the map.”

“None of this is getting me any closer to my Jackie!” he thought sadly.

He took a moment to look at a picture of Applejack from his phone, before he was shoved forward by Coalstone, almost causing him to drop the phone.

“Move your butt, lover boy. Unless you wanna get eaten by a wolf, keep moving!”

Coal loudly growled in frustration and tried to remain calm as the group continued walking, not enjoying the fact that this seemingly simply trip was continually dragging on much longer than they all had expected.

After what felt like two hours worth of walking finally, the company stopped.

“All right, Flash,” Autumn said, his hands on his hips, “Where are you taking us?”

Flash turned, a look of confusion on his face.

“Wh-what do you mean?”

“You know what we mean!” Coal glared. “We thought you could take us to Camp Everfree using the map. It’s been hours and we still haven’t seen camp yet. So, do you know where we’re going or not?”

Flash hung his head and sighed.

“All right. Fine. I admit. I don’t know where we are...”

All of the members of the group gasped and stepped back in shock.

“Y-you what!?”

Autumn rolled his eyes.

“Yeah, big surprise!”

“I-I was sick and tired of you all fighting,” Flash said, nervously twirling his fingers. “I-I wanted you to stop being s-so hostile to each other, so...I...I’m sorry.”

Rusty stared at Flash and stepped closer.

“Do you mean to say that...you’ve led us in the wrong direction?”

Flash suddenly threw his hands in the air.

“I don’t even know how to read a map!” he cried in despair.

Green Sage huffed and shook his head.

“Well! Remind me why we trusted this idiot with a map that he can’t even read!?”

The only response he got was the sound of a bag hitting the ground, followed by a pair of knuckles being cracked. Flash and the other’s looked, and took a step back as Coalstone suddenly stepped forward with a very angry look on his face that easily promised pain.

“Flash...tell me something. You ever see those horror movies that take place in the woods? You know, where the ‘big scary dude’ in a mask brutally murders a bunch of dumb teenagers in crazy creative ways…!?”

He slowly made his way towards Flash with the others backing away from him. Green Sage looked at Coal with a huge grin.

“Ooh!” he chuckled. “A darker side to you, I see! I love it!”

Sage suddenly found Coal’s hand behind his head before he was shoved face-first into the dirt with Coal continuing towards his intended target.

“Keep you mouth shut, Sage! I’m pissed off enough as it is, and I have no problem making you literally eat dirt!”

Autumn hesitated.

“Should I help this guy?” He thought to himself, looking at Flash who was backed up against a tree. “He did screw us over, but...he did try to fix the tension between us, didn’t he?”

Sage coughed and slowly rose to his knees as he took his dusty glasses off and wiped them clean with his shirt.

“You know, Coal,” he smiled, “you can knock me around like a ragdoll all you want, but it won’t change the fact that I’m still smarter than you. Don’t you try to deny it either! I studied at an academy! Where did you study? On a rock farm?”

Coal roared in response, “No I didn’t study at a rock farm, but I did learn something...how to deal with rock heads like you!”

He then proceeded to punch a nearby tree, cracking the wooden trunk and leaving a rather large fist imprint in it. He still retained his attention on FlashTruth, who looked like he was about to cry.

“Oh, for pete’s sake, stop it you two!” Autumn cried, stepping forward into Coal’s path. “Coalstone, Truth made a mistake, we all do.”

The large individual however, wasn’t having it.

“Except our mistakes didn’t get us LOST IN THE MIDDLE OF THE FREAKING WOODS!”

His scream caused some of the nearby trees to shake and birds nesting it them to fly away, while he was huffing in serious anger. FlashTruth fainted dead away.

“Coal, think about what you’re about to do,” Autumn pleaded. “You’re about to pound a helpless guy who can’t do anything to protect himself. Truth has fainted. That should be good enough.”

He turned to face the group.

“I know that none of us particularly like each other, but that’s no reason to attack each other like barbarians. I don’t know if any of you have noticed, but there’s a group similar to ours, in personalities. In my time at Canterlot High, I have never seen these girls in a serious fight amongst themselves for more than a few seconds. They always help each other and are the best of friends.”

He looked back at Coal.

“If we can’t be friends, then let’s at least not be enemies.”

Coal however didn’t seem moved as he reeled back his fist ready to smash clean through Autumn to get to Flash, through his fist shook as he held himself back. After a moment of held breath, he dropped his arm, turned around and roared out in anger as he ran to the tree he punched and started headbutting it several times, eventually causing the small tree to actually give way and fall over.

Everyone was silent as Coal tried to calm himself down. Finally, he let out a calming breath and turned, directing his attention to Flash before pointing at him.

“Fine, I won’t stoop so low as to pummel him into the ground. Just keep him as far away from me as possible during this week and we won’t have a problem.”

He then dropped his arm and picked up his bag. Autumn sighed in relief. “That’s all we needed, thank you.”

Green Sage looked at the group and lowered his head. The others were expecting him to say something, but all he did was utter a sigh and said nothing.

Rusty shook his head.

“Y’know, let’s just… stop it. This is getting out of hand. And coming from a scientist like me, I know what out of hand looks like.”

Just then, they heard a voice calling from the other side of the forest.

“Hello? Is anyone out there?”

The group turned towards the sound and saw rustling among the bushes.

Rusty nervously pulled his metal box out from his labcoat, ready to unclasp it at a moment’s notice. Coalstone raised both of his fists, getting into a somewhat boxing stance, growling at whatever was coming out. The other group members assumed similar stances.

The bushes continued their rustling, slight glimpses of color occasionally flashing throughout the landscape.

Rusty inched his way towards the bushes, reaching further into the box. To everyone’s utter shock, Rusty sporadically dashed headfirst towards the bushes, shifting his stance as he pulled out… an even smaller box. But once more, the crowd went into complete shock as the box began to rearrange it’s outward appearance, sprouting a short twin-barrel on the end, complete with a buzzing sound of a taser’s charging process.

“Rusty’s got a taser!” FlashTruth exclaimed frantically, pointing to the gun in Rusty’s hand. He’s got a taser, everybody!”

Green Sage folded his arms and merely nodded at the weapon, an impressed look on his face.

“Not bad,” he uttered under his breath. “Not bad at all.”

Rusty stood his ground, standing defiantly as he waited for whatever was in the bush to show itself.

“Who is it?” he shouted. “Show yourself!”

He followed the shouting with a rock thrown into the center of the bushes.

“OW!” a voice cried from the bushes.

Then, out from the bushes stepped a purple-ish girl wearing now cracked glasses.

“Um...h-hello...?” she asked timidly, looking at each member of the group. “I-I heard loud shouting out here. Is...is everything alright?”

Rusty’s jaw dropped as he realized what he did.

“Please-forgive-me-I-totally-didn’t-mean-to-hit-you-with-a-rock-and-everything…!” he rambled, falling to his knees.

Green Sage grunted, concealing his chuckle. The girl glanced down towards Rusty, adjusting her cracked lenses as she did so.

“Wait… Rusty?”

Rusty continued his apologetic train of babbling.

“I’m so, so sorry, Twilight! I really didn’t mean for that to happen! We thought you were an animal or something of the sort. What were you doing in the bushes?”

Twilight managed a giggle.

“Some of the girls and I heard loud shouting out here. So we went to investigate. We decided to split up and that’s when I heard all of you nearby. I went through the bushes to get to you guys but then...well.”

She took her cracked glasses off and chuckled. Rusty nervously blushed.

“I’m so sorry, Twilight! Honest, I didn’t know you were in there!”

Twilight reached out her hand to him.

“It’s okay. I know.”

Rusty smiled up at her and clasped her hand, allowing her to pull him up. In that instant, they heard a sound of someone clearing their throat and turned. The rest of the group stood eyeing them, curiously.

“Care to introduce your friend to the group? Or are you just gonna keep making googly eyes at each other?” Coalstone asked, his arms folded.

Rusty quickly released Twilight’s hand.

“Oh, uh, right.”

He motioned to her.

“Guys, this is Twilight Sparkle...my girlfriend.”

Green Sage burst out in laughter.

“Y-you threw a rock at your girlfriend!? Oh, that’s a laugh!”

The rest of the group spun around and glared squarely at him. Sage stepped back.

“Fine. fine,” he sighed.

“So, are we far from Camp Everfree?” Autumn asked. “Our bus kinda got a flat tire and we’ve been trying to get there for a while now.”

Twilight giggled, causing the others to look at her puzzledly.

“Oh, you’re not very far, actually,” was her only reply.

The others looked at each other, surprised.

“We’re--we’re not?” FlashTruth said. “B-but I thought--!” He quickly pulled up the map and looked it over again.

Twilight smiled at them as she put her glasses back on.

“How did you think we heard you guys?”

For a moment, they just glanced at each other, confused. Then, the realization struck them like a cannonball.

“WHAT!?!?”

One by one, they fell to their knees with loud groans.

“We--we were so close to camp after all...!?” Autumn exclaimed under his breath.

“FlashTruth...was leading us in the right direction all along...!?” Coalstone breathed.

Green Sage swallowed as he took his glasses off and rubbed the area between his eyes.

“That...that idiot…!? This...this is impossible...!”

The only one that didn’t fall to his knees was FlashTruth, who stared dumbfoundedly at the group. Then, a big grin appeared on his face as his eyes lit up like fireworks.

“Yeah! I was right, wasn’t I. Whaddayaknow.”

As Twilight led the group through the trees to the camp, Nights paused to adjust his boot strap. However, he got back up, upon hearing a bush rustle to his left. He glanced nervously around, unable to shake the feeling that he was being watched. He hurried along to join up with the guys.
***

Author's Note:

Well that's the intro folks. And yes this story will mainly focus on these seven new students trying to get along during this week long camping experience, with all the misadventures that comes with it.

Think of them kind of like an anti Humane 7 who can't stand each other as opposed to being friends. As to what will happen at camp, well you'll just have to wait and see.