• Published 11th Jan 2017
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The Crystal Prep Files - FoxMcCloud7921

Taking place during and after the events of "Legend of Everfree", the girls from Crystal Prep become aware of magical oddities taking place at and near their school.

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Chapter 5

Sunny walked home in a hurry, her hands clenching hard enough that her nails would cut through her palms. She was slightly upset at her friends, partly because they had been given special powers and not her, but mostly she was upset at herself. Cadance’s words weren’t meant to hurt her, but they ended up cutting her deep inside anyway.

Truthfully, she wasn’t sure if she was feeling guilt for what happened at the games, or responsibility for letting what happened happen. She never proclaimed herself leader of her little group of friends, it just happened that way, which meant she should have interfered and told Cinch not to go ahead with her insidious plan. But no, she fell in line with the others, because that’s what students are taught early at Crystal Prep: always respect your elders and their decisions, no matter what.

Once she got home, she went upstairs to her room and closed her door. She took off her bag and sat on the bed, staring at the wall. It was a plain room for the most part, except for the shelves of books she had and posters of Crystal Prep and the Shadowbolts mascot.

Now that she thought about it…what was a Shadowbolt? The mascot was clearly a pegasus but with a dark coat, opposite of the ones you saw in movies. Somehow, the look of it completely matched up with the school: hostile and unfriendly. They were a tour de force in the sports world. Every team in the area feared them and who could blame them?

She looked over to the bat near her closet. Softball had just finished about a month ago so she really had nothing to look forward to til next spring. Sadly, next spring was when she would graduate and she still wasn’t sure what to do with her life.

She went over and picked up the bat, swinging it back and forth. What was it her father always said to her when she was younger? “Swing away Sunshine…” That’s right…she remembered he would always practice with her during the off-season. Who knows…maybe she’ll get a scholarship to some college.

Suddenly, she heard something come from her window outside. Gripping the bat tightly now, she went over and looked out but saw nothing in the backyard. Her house was fenced all around so it wasn’t as if someone could walk right in. And to be honest, unlike some of the other houses on her street, hers didn’t seem like the best choice to rob.

Out of all the girls in their group, Sugarcoat and Sour were at the top of the financial totem pole. Sunny was in the middle while Indigo and Lemon were near the bottom. Of course, even then Indigo and Lemon’s families had a lot more money than most that went to Canterlot High. Indigo got in easily since she was a skilled athlete who could do practically any sport, although soccer was her favorite. As for Lemon, she was good with sports, as she was on the soccer team with Indigo, but she was focusing more on a career in music, which was no surprise at this point.

Despite seeing nothing outside, Sunny wasn’t reassured. She went downstairs, still carrying the bat. If some burglar was bold enough to break in, he was going to be in for a rude surprise.

She went outside through the backdoor and looked around. There were trees and bushes nearby, thick enough to hide a person. She heard a slight rustle come from that direction and she cautiously approached it.

The rustling grew louder and as she was about to raise the bat something jumped out of the bushes. Sunny breathed a sigh of relief as Russell, their German Shepherd, quickly came over and sat in front of her as if reporting for something. She smiled and patted the dog’s head. “You trying to give me a heart attack Rus? Well, at least you’re doing your job. Is there a squirrel in there you just need to catch?”

She turned around and headed back to the house but then stopped when she realized Russell wasn’t following her. She looked back and saw the Shepherd was dead set on something. “Come on Russell it’s probably just a bird or something-”

Russell then started to growl as he kept staring ahead. “What? What is it?” Then Sunny felt it, as if her hair was standing up on end and she felt goosebumps as well. Suddenly, the spot in front of the fence started to shimmer slightly and it wasn’t long before a large tear in the fabric of space appeared.

Russell started barking at it. “No Russell, get away from there! Come here!” But Russell, ever loyal to his master, wouldn’t budge. She then realized it wasn’t the tear itself that he was barking at, but what was coming through it. And it was large.

“Look, are you sure this is a good idea?” Indigo asked as the four girls walked down the street. “I mean, maybe we should just give her some room…like real friends should do?”

“You’re the one who was bragging about superpowers,” Sugarcoat said. “But I don’t think that was the issue. I am kind of curious as to what she was speaking to Dean Cadance about…”

As they approached Sunny’s house, they could hear a dog barking. “That sounds like Russell. Maybe he caught a groundhog or something,” Sour stated.

Sugarcoat frowned. “No…he sounds agitated. Like if a stranger shows up at your door.”

“Ooh, you can speak to animals too?” Lemon asked.

“No. When you’ve been around dogs long enough, you can tell by the way they bark if something’s wrong.”

“Says the girl who has a Doberman that’s willing to kill you if she gives it the command,” Indigo muttered.

“Ugh, maybe some pervert is trying to spy into her window, it wouldn’t surprise-” Suddenly, part of the fencing collapsed right in front of them. “Or…maybe a bear snuck into her yard.”

“That’s not a bear,” Sugarcoat said. “Come on, we need to-”

“Hold it!” Indigo said. “We’re not equipped for whatever’s in there…give me your keys.”

“What?” The other three girls said.

“Just trust me, I can be back here in a jiffy!”

The three of them looked at one another and fished out their keys to their respective houses. “You know what to look for, right?” Sugarcoat asked.

“Please, aren’t we friends?” Indigo grinned and then zoomed off.

“How long do we give her?” Sour asked.

“If she’s really good, it should only take five seconds,” Sugarcoat said matter-of-factly.

Six seconds later, Indigo returned with a large bag. “Well, everything was clear except for your butler Sugarcoat, but he didn’t seem to care what I was doing.”

“Jacques knows how to mind his own business,” Sugarcoat said proudly as she reached out her hand. “Would you kindly?”

Indigo gave her a pair of diamond-encrusted pistols, Sour a pair of throwing knives, and Lemon a pair of fingerless gloves. Indigo meanwhile put on a pair of brass knuckles. “Okay, now we can go save our leader.”

Sunny, meanwhile, was now dealing with what had come through, which just happened to be a giant arachnid. Whatever this other dimension was, she wasn’t liking it. Unfortunately, due to its size and the fact that it most likely was poisonous, Sunny wasn’t able to get close enough to bash its brains out so she went for the next best thing.

Russell had been gracious enough to steal the softballs she had been using in practice and had them laying all over the yard. Sunny was willing to forgive him this time as she grabbed one. “Swing away Sunshine…” She threw it into the air, timed her swing, and caused it to hit the spider in the eye. But that only seemed to piss it off more.

“Never fear the Shadow-holy crap!” Sunny didn’t have to look to see it was Indigo who spoke.

“Took you guys long enough,” she replied.

“Oh, were you expecting us?” Sugarcoat asked as they went to her side.

“Had a feeling…wait where did you get all that?”

“I-Indigo…ugh why did it have to be spiders!?” Sour screamed as she trembled slightly. “Stupid stupid spiders!”

“Should we even ask?” Indigo asked.

“Later.” Sunny then looked at Russell and got big on him. “Russell, go home!” Even in the face of danger, her tone was enough to send Russell scampering. “This is going to get ugly isn’t it?”

“Hope you got good insurance!” Lemon said. “Come on Indigo, let’s get him!”

“Alright, alright, just follow my lead!” Indigo struck as the spider reared up on its back legs. Indigo quickly found its soft underside. “Oh man, you make this too easy…!” She then started punching the underside at a quick pace, the pointed ends of her fists stabbing into the soft flesh. The spider screamed as it tried to knock Indigo away with one of its legs.

Meanwhile, Sunny was giving off orders. “We need to take its eyes out, all eight of them.”

“I got this.” Sugarcoat said as she stepped forward and raised her weapons. She took turns firing off rounds, never missing a target. Five years of hunting did wonders.

Though now blinded, the spider was enraged, which made it a larger threat. “It’s got a stinger!” Sunny warned as she saw it going after Indigo.

Sour then threw one of her knives and it cut the stinger off cleanly before coming back to her. “Ew it’s got spider guts on it!”

Indigo came back panting. “I thought I shish-kebabed him good but he’s one tough mother!”

Sunny looked over to Lemon and nodded. She grabbed another softball, wound up her swing and fired. The ball hit the arachnid in the head again and it barely did anything but get its attention, but that was her plan.

Suddenly Lemon appeared out of nowhere, having jumped off the ground. “Hoo-yah!” Her foot connected with the beast’s face and the rest of the girls could’ve sworn they heard chitin break.

That caused the great beast to fall onto its face where it twitched and gave off a low scream. It was still alive but no longer capable of attacking them.

Sugarcoat went over and mercifully shot the thing in the head. However, instead of laying there on its deathbed, the creature disappeared into a fog of dark mist. “So…did we beat it?” Lemon asked.

“We sure did!” Indigo said, wrapping her arms around the group. “That was awesome Lemon!”

“I knew there was a reason to wear metal-tipped boots,” Lemon grinned proudly.

“Let’s not forget this was a team effort,” Sugarcoat reminded her.

“Yeah, yeah, we know you’re an expert marksman,” Indigo said. “Still, nice going Leader.”

“I barely did anything,” Sunny said with a hint of a smile. “You guys did all the work.”

“Well, you did need some help after all,” Sour said, carefully wiping her blade off. “So…what exactly happened?”

“It’s exactly as you saw it,” Sunny said. “Our eight-legged freak decided to crash my yard…” She looked around and grimaced at the damage. “Quite literally.”

“Oh yeah…boy is your mother going to have a cow,” Indigo said.

“We’ll just say it was a drunk driver,” Sugarcoat stated. “Luckily, because your backyard is so secluded no one saw what was going on.” And it also helped that a lot of the houses were sound-proof on the inside.

“Yeah, this time,” Sunny replied as she dropped her bat and sat on the ground. “There’s no doubt about it now…this was all intended. Someone…or something sent that thing after me.”

“You really think so?” Sour asked.

“I know so,” Sunny said as she looked at her friends. “Someone is telling us to politely ‘piss off’, meaning there really is something going on here.” She paused for a moment. “We need to get a hold of Twilight as soon as possible.”

“You do realize the other issue we have?” Sugarcoat asked.

Sunny looked away guiltily. “I know…you’re all involved now and any of you could be next.”

“Eh, it is what it is,” Indigo said. “But uh…sorry about before. I hope you don’t think you’re feeling left out because of…you know.”

Sunny sighed. “It’s not a big deal…I mean, maybe you’re right, and it just hasn’t come to me yet. But since these things are coming from a dimension supposedly filled with magic, at least now we can even the odds.”

“Schoolgirls by day, dimensional protectors at night,” Lemon said. “Yeah, it’s got a nice ring to it!”

“You’re not going to give us a name now are you?” Sugarcoat asked.

“Hmm…well we’re already Shadowbolts so I guess that’s enough.”

Sunny thought back to the poster in her room. It may look hostile, but you can’t deny it’s a proud creature. “Yeah…you’re right about that, and Shadowbolts will protect their home, whatever the cost.” She looked around and asked sheepishly, “So…anyone willing to help me clean up?”