• Published 8th Jul 2012
  • 4,396 Views, 96 Comments

The Best Night Ever! [repeat] - AstroStar



It's time to film 'The Best Night Ever' again, and it's up to Pinkie Pie to make sure the rerun airs smoothly. Unfortunately, her friend's patience is quickly running out.

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Back To The Show!

Ok Pinkie, calm down, Pinkie Pie told herself as she entered Carousel Boutique for the next scene. The intro might have been a disaster, but we’re not doomed yet. We can still pull this off. We just need to focus.

A small part of Pinkie groaned at that thought. It seemed as if she had been saying that more often as the summer wore on. She began to wonder how much more convincing and pleading she had to do before the repeat cycle was over. Pinkie shook her head. Now wasn’t the time to think about that. They had a show to do right now. Pinkie turned to address her friends as they were getting themselves ready for the upcoming spa scene.

“Listen girls,” Pinkie began. “I know this hasn’t been the greatest start we’ve ever done. But if we focus, we can still save the episode.”

Rainbow Dash sighed. “Why bother? This show’s gone off the tracks since we started.”

“I hate to say it but this story’s a lost cause, darling,” Rarity added as she was helping Pinkie comb her mane flat. “Try as we might, there is simply no way this episode can get back to normal at this rate.”

“Besides, we can’t even go to the gala without Twilight and Fluttershy,” Spike pointed out. Pinkie tried to counter the observation, but was unable to. Spike was right, they couldn't really do this story without the absent ponies.

“Stop lyin' to yourself, Pinkie," Applejack said. "Ah know it’s your job to make sure the show runs smoothly and all, but this has gotten out of hand. In fact, this whole summer's gotten out of hand for everypony.”

Rarity nodded. “Applejack’s right, Pinkie. I mean, honestly. How many more times will you have me fall to my impending doom. Or have me be taken by some Diamond Dogs. For that matter, why is it that I’m always the one in peril?”

“Only the best for our drama queen,” Rainbow Dash snarked, turning her head away to avoid Rarity's death glare.

“At any rate, Rarity does have a point,” The pegasus continued. “I mean, you remember how much begging I had to do to convince the Wonderbolts to get knocked out by Rarity again for the Sonic Rainboom scene?”

“I know all that Dashie, and I told the Wonderbolts I’d make it up to them. It’s all for the good of the show, after all.”

“The good of the show? What about us, Pinkie?" Applejack shouted. "If ya weren’t so concerned about putting the show on like ya have, then ya woulda noticed that everypony’s had it just about up to here with these dadgum reruns!”

“You think I don’t know that?" Pinkie Pie replied, her eyes watering slightly. "You think it’s easy for me to keep my act up all summer long? You think I want to go through ‘Party of One’ or ‘Baby Cakes’ again? Applejack, I hate doing these things as much as all of you!”

Rarity tilted her head in confusion. “So, if I may ask, why are you forcing us to go on with this charade then?”

“We can’t afford to lose the fans, that’s why! They might abandon us if we went away! And if that happens, then we…” Pinkie wasn’t able to finish the sentence. The thought was too horrible to contemplate.

Rainbow Dash placed a hoof on Pinkie's shoulder. “Pinkie Pie, I keep telling you. That won’t ever happen.”

“We can’t afford to take that chance, Dashie. Not after what happened… last time.” Pinkie said softly. “Just… let’s get through this gala one time, and then I promise I’ll try to lessen the rerun load for everypony. Please?” She desperately pleaded.

Rainbow Dash sighed in defeat. “All right, Pinkie. We'll do it.”

The other two ponies hesitated for a second, but eventually gave in to try to help the desperate Pinkie Pie.

“Ah guess one more time won’t hurt,” Applejack conceded.

“If it really means that much for you Pinkie...” Rarity added.

“Thanks girls.” Pinkie Pie sniffed, wiping her tears away. She turned to the assistant baby dragon. "Hey Spike, how much time we have left?"

Spike went over to the camera and looked through the viewfinder. “Looks like we’re about thirty seconds away, Pinkie!” the dragon announced.

“Thanks!” Pinkie said. “Now remember the plan girls. It’s important that we try to stay on track to the story.”

“But, Pinkie? How the hay are we gonna do this without Twilight or Fluttershy?” Applejack asked.

"We can't do the musical number with just the four of us." Rarity pointed out.

“We don’t have much of a choice. We’re going to have to improvise. It's all we can do until Twilight and Fluttershy come back." Pinkie said.

Rainbow Dash rolled her eyes. “If they come back.”

“Fifteen seconds!” Spike shouted.

Pinkie leaned in to her friends. “We'll just have to try and make the best of this. Let’s just have some fun now, ok?"

Rarity grumbled. "Let's get this over with."

"Places everypony!” Pinkie shouted as the ponies took their places for their scene.

Spike put his hand on the headset as the countdown neared its end. “We’re back in 5… 4… 3…”

With that, Spike put the headset down and jumped down onto the floor, letting the countdown finish as he got ready to do the scene. On cue, the camera’s red light lit up, indicating the transmission has resumed.

“Come on you guys! Let me in!” Spike yelled to begin the scene.

“Sure thing Spike!” Rainbow Dash said as she walked towards the door, just like the story prescribed. However, she only took a couple of steps before she realized that Spike wasn’t on the other side of the door. Rather, he was still inside the room.

“Spike! You blew your cue!” Rainbow whispered.

Spike winced as he realized his error. “Oh no! I was supposed to be outside wasn’t I?”

Pinkie suppressed the urge to panic at the miscue. She quickly trotted over to the dragon, snorting a fake giggle as she tried to cover up the blooper. “It’s alright Spike! We would have let you in. Besides, we don't normally wear clothes anyway!"

"That's mah line," Applejack muttered under her breath.

Pinkie walked back to the hair dryer, continuing her improvising. “I can't believe tonight's the big night girls! The Grand Galloping Gala! Oh, I’m so excited! Aren’t you excited, girls?”

The three mares looked uneasily around the room in response.

“Uh, yeah. It’s gonna be uh... great.” Rainbow Dash forced out.

“Yeah. Uh… great!” Applejack nervously agreed.

A quick pause followed, prompting Rainbow Dash and Applejack to nudge Rarity at the same time, trying to force anything out of the unicorn.

“I really like your… mane?” Rarity meekly offered.

Pinkie banged her head on a nearby table in frustration. You three weren't even supposed to say that, she thought.

Shaking off any reminders from 'Lesson Zero' from his head, Spike continued on with the scene, trying to help salvage the shipwreck the episode was becoming.

“I still can’t believe we’re gonna be in Canterlot tonight! And the best part is that we all get to hang out together, all night long!”

Rainbow Dash, Applejack, and Rarity looked at each other and the three ponies gave off a defeated sigh. They allowed their lines to come out flatly, devoid of any enthusiasm.

“I don’t know Spike.”

“We’ll just have to see.”

“We gonna be a mite busy.”

“Busy having fun!!!” Pinkie quickly chirped in her trademark upbeat tone. Her flat mane then poofed back up to its normal state. Pinkie breathed a small sigh of relief. At least something went right so far.

“I just wish I knew where Twilight and Fluttershy are,” Spike improvised, covering for the absent ponies.

“They’ll be around shortly,” Pinkie answered. “They won’t miss this for the world! We’ve all been looking forward to this.”

“Oh, I just know what you mean Pinkie, darling!" Rarity said, letting out the most forced smile she could ever remember giving. She struggled to get the rest of her words out. "I am just positively overfilled with excitement, myself. To think that tonight I’ll finally get the chance to meet the stallion of my dreeeeeaaaaa…” The unicorn’s face twisted as she found herself unable to finish the sentence.

“I know Rarity! The stallion of your dreams?” Pinkie said, finishing Rarity’s sentence.

“Yes. The absolute perfect stallion!” Rarity growled through clenched teeth. She then paused for a second as that last sentence gave her an idea. “You know, instead of going to the gala, how about we do the Hearts and Hooves Day story instead! We still have time to gather the Crusaders and…”

Pinkie quickly ran over and forced the fashionista’s mouth closed. “Rarity we can’t! We have to go to the gala tonight!”

“Besides 'Hearts and Hooves Day' won’t quite be the same anymore,” Applejack informed the group.

“Why not?” Pinkie asked, mentally preparing herself for more bad news.

“Big Mac n’ Cheerilee eloped last week.” Applejack calmly explained.

Pinkie Pie’s jaw dropped. “THEY WHAT?!?”

“Whoa! How did that happen?” asked a surprise Rainbow Dash.

Applejack explained. “Well, the last time we did that episode, the two of ‘em said 'forget it' and they high-tailed it to Las Pegasus before the Crusaders could even whip up that potion of theirs.”

“I never even got a chance to catch the bouquet,” Rarity lamented.

Spike scratched the back of his head. “I don’t think the shippers are going to like this.”

Pinkie forced her way into the middle of the room, desperate to keep the scene from going completely off the rails. "Let's worry about 'Hearts and Hooves Day' later! We still have a gala to destro... I mean, to go to!"

"Yes! Of course! The Gala!" Rainbow Dash shouted in agreement. She then leaned into Pinkie's ear. "Where exactly are we supposed to be in the story right now, anyway?" she whispered.

"We're still waiting for Twilight and Fluttershy to show up, and then off we go to the Gala!" Pinkie Pie yelled loud enough for everypony, and everybrony for that matter, to hear. "They should be here soon... I hope."

"But, what are we supposed to do until then, Pinkie?" Rarity asked.

"Well, we can't do much of anything yet, so we just have to... wait for them," the pink pony gulped.

"Um... OK then," Spike said.

A short pause followed while everyone tried to find a way to fill time in front of the live camera.

“Well, um… well... uh.... you girls are looking great,” Spike sputtered out.

Applejack hesitated a bit as she answered. “Uh… thank ya kindly, Spike.”

An awkward pause followed.

"Well... did anypony do anything interesting this past week-end?" Pinkie asked, trying to get anything from her friends.

Another few seconds of awkward silence followed.

"So... Ah bought a new hat the other day."

"Oh. That's marvelous darling!"

Another silence followed.

"Was it expensive, AJ?"

"Ah got it on sale. It was 25% off, too!"

"Wow, that's... great!"

Another silence followed.

"Hey, has anypony ever wondered what would happen if a cockatrice ever looked at itself in a mirror?"

The ponies pondered the query for a few short seconds before they shrugged it away. Another silence followed.

Spike sighed. "We really suck at this."

"Does anypony have anything we can use?" Pinkie asked.

“Um… Hey! How about a story?" Rainbow offered.

Applejack shrugged. "Be our guest, RD."

"All right, so there was this one time at flight camp…”

"Watch it Dashie, there are kids watching out there!" Pinkie whispered her warning.

"It's ok, this one's a G rated story. Although I guess I might have to skip the part with the banana and the..."

SLAM

Rainbow Dash’s anecdote was suddenly interrupted when the boutique’s front door suddenly burst open. The surprised occupants turned their heads to see that the source of the noise was a currently unhinged Twilight Sparkle who was dragging in Fluttershy by her tail. The most shocking part of the display, however, was that Fluttershy was tied up, her four hooves bound together and her muzzle roped shut. The frightened Fluttershy tried to yell and scream for help, but her pleas only came across as muffled shrieks.

“Get… in here! Your… big scene… is coming up!” Twilight grunted as she dragged the bound pegasus in the boutique.

The entrance left everyone stunned frozen. In particular, Pinkie's blood ran cold as she noticed the live ponynapping. She then turned her attention to the camera and saw its red light was still on, meaning that this breakdown was airing live. Not only was a pony going completely berserk on Pinkie's watch, the breakdown was being exposed for all to see.

Rainbow Dash was the first to snap out of her shock. “Twilight! What are you doing to Fluttershy?” she shouted.

“Oh, just making sure that everything's perfect for the big song number.” Twilight grinned madly. She began to untie the rope around Fluttershy’s muzzle. “Now that we’re all here, we can finally go to the gala as good friends!!!” She punctuated the last words by looking straight as Fluttershy’s face, making the shy pegasus yelp in fear.

“OK, this is way beyond creepy!” Spike looked on, part in fascination and in horror.

Rarity nudged Pinkie Pie out of her shock. “Pinkie Pie! Don't just stand there, do something!”

Pinkie Pie gulped. She slowly approached the unstable egghead.

“Um Twilight,” Pinkie started. “Maybe if we all just take a moment to calm down, then maybe we can…”

“Oh there's no time to be calm today!” Twilight interrupted. “This is the Best Night Ever after all!"

"Hey! Excuse us!" a male voice shouted from just beyond the open door. A pair of angry stallions entered the boutique.

"What's the deal here?!? We've been waiting outside forever for you guys to come out!" shouted the amber colored stallion.

The light blue stallion nodded. "Yeah, are you guys gonna need us for the..."

He stopped as he noticed the manic expression on Twilight's face. The crazed unicorn turned to two stallions and flashed a wide, insane smile.

"May we help you?" Twilight grinned madly.

The two stallion's pupils shrunk down in fear. They began to laugh nervously.

"On second thought..."

"...We'll just sit this episode out."

They both ran out the door and fled the boutique at full speed, galloping as far away from the crazy unicorn as possible. Pinkie Pie went over to Twilight, trying to diffuse the situation as best as she could.

"OK then! Now we got that out of the way, what do you say we just all calm down and have a nice cool glass of apple juice?"

Twilight shook her head. "We don't have time for fun and games now! We have a show to do! And this is the part where we sing now!” She turned to the tied-up Fluttershy. Her expression darkened.

“So, what are you waiting for? SING!!!” she yelled into Fluttershy’s face.

The frightened pony complied, afraid of what her friend might do to her if she didn't.

“At the Gala, in the garden, I’m going to see them all…” she whispered, tears rolling down her eyes.

“I CAN’T HEAR YOU!!!” Twilight shouted.

Fluttershy shrieked. Without another moment’s thought she sang louder, letting loose more and more tears as she went on.

“All the creatures, I’ll befriend th-them at the gala.
All th-the b-birdies, and th-the cri-critters,
th-they will lov... love me big and small.
W-we’ll be-become.... good fr-frie-friends for-forever,
right here at...at the gala...”

Fluttershy collapsed into Rarity’s chest and broke out in a full round of sobbing, the white unicorn stroking her back in comfort. Rainbow Dash went over as well to help calm Fluttershy down, working quickly to undo the rest of her restraints. Pinkie Pie remained frozen in disbelief over what she had just witnessed.

“Perfect!” the crazed Twilight said. She then turned her attention to the pony who had the next lines. “Your turn Applejack!”

“TWILIGHT, HAVE YOU GONE AND LOST YOUR COTTON-PICKIN’ MIND?!?” Applejack exploded in rage at the unicorn.

Twilight simply responded by put a hoof on Applejack’s chest. “Now, now. That’s not how your part goes Applejack. You’re supposed to be singing about your apple-tastic treats! Yummy, yummy! Better hurry! Bring your money! Gimme…”

Applejack didn’t allow the crazed unicorn to continue any longer. She whipped out her lasso and roped her friend into submission. Twilight did her best to struggle free, but the farmer pony held on tightly to the rope. Fluttershy stopped crying as the struggle hit a crescendo, observing the fight in silent fear along with everyone else.

“Snap out of it!!!” The cowpony shouted.

“But AJ! We still need to finish the song,” Twilight strained as she struggled to get free.

Applejack narrowed her eyes into slits. “Forget the song, Twilight! How dare ya do that to Fluttershy! What’s the matter with you?”

Twilight struggled in the grip of the lasso, but Applejack held on tight. “I’m just doing my job, Applejack! She needed to be here! We all need to be here! It's for the good of the show! That’s what Pinkie said after all!”

Pinkie bit her lip while Twilight used her own words against her. A large sense of guilt had begun to grow in her stomach.

Twilight continued to ramble, her frantic tone growing more desperate as she continued on. “And in order to keep the show going, we were told to redo the same stories again and again and again until summer was over, and that’s exactly what we’re going to do! Even if it means sacrificing our own sanity to do it! We’ll do every parasprite invasion! Every Cutie Pox scare! Every dragon migration from now until the end of time! We have a responsibility to our wonderful fans after all! We should be thrilled to have fans like that. We are thrilled! I am thrilled! I… I…”

Twilight looked at her five friends and her little assistant, and she noticed that everyone in the room looked to be extremely worried about her. Even Applejack loosened her grip on the rope during the rant. She then took a look at the camera, remembering why she and her friends were doing these repeats in the first place. It was too much. She collapsed on the floor and wailed.

“I CAN’T TAKE IT ANYMORE!!!”

Twilight broke down in a round of full, unconstrained sobs. Applejack let go of her rope, allowing Twilight to move freely once more. The six other occupants of the room looked on in stunned silence.

“I’m sorry Pinkie, I can’t do it! I can't do another gala! I can’t take another round of Pinkie sense. I can’t take another round of late reports. I can’t take another round of… of losing my friends to D- Discord! Just make it stop. Somepony. Anypony. Please make this stop!”

Spike rushed over to the weeping unicorn and embraced the broken unicorn. Twilight returned the hug, clutching her assistant with all her might. Applejack's expression now showed compassion and mercy for the pony she had tried to restrain a few moments earlier. She slowly approached Twilight and held her in a warm embrace.

“It’s gonna be all right sugarcube, ya hear me? It’ll be all right.” Applejack said, trying desperately to keep a straight face on for the sake of her friend.

Fluttershy found herself crying again softly. Not out of fear from her friend, but instead out of deep concern. Rarity's eyes watered up as well, as she levitated a handkerchief to her eyes to wipe away the oncoming tears. Rainbow Dash looked away from the scene for a moment, trying to hide the tears flowing down her own face.

Pinkie Pie, however, remained frozen to the floor in shock. Her mind was replaying an entire summer’s worth of her poking, prodding, begging, pleading and persuading everypony into doing the reruns that had led to this moment. Applejack was right. She had been so wrapped up in the show that she sacrificed her friends’ well-being for it. She looked around the room, taking a good look at the sobbing unicorn. She then noticed the camera. Still running, and still exposing one of her friends’ most vulnerable moments.

“Spike? Cut to commercial.” She instructed, her voice barely above a whisper.

Spike nodded silently. He briefly broke away from Twilight and went over to the camera. After pushing a few buttons, the camera’s red light turned off, indicating that they were no longer live. With the task now complete, Spike ran back to Twilight.

Nopony was able to say anything at first as Twilight continued to cry. Nopony knew what could be said or done at a moment like this. Pinkie Pie didn't had an answer this time. She used to be so sure about what needed to be done. But now, for the first time since that fateful day, Pinkie Pie didn't know what to do.

After a few moments, Rainbow Dash spoke up. “Pinkie? I hate to say this, but I think we better cancel the gala all together. We don’t have much of a choice here,” she said sadly.

Pinkie hung her head in shame. “Yeah, I guess you’re right.” Pinkie began to sob herself. “I… I never meant for any of this to happen. You guys were right. We never should have done this in the first place! I… It’s just that... I thought that if we didn’t, then…”

Rarity gingerly lifted Pinkie’s head back up and gave the pink earth pony a reassuring smile. “We know Pinkie, we know. You don’t have to say any more. ”

Applejack grunted as she helped Twilight up on her hooves. “At any rate, now’s not the time for apologies. Ah’ll help take Twilight back to the library where she can calm down. And bring Fluttershy too. We all can have a talk there.”

"And I guess I'll tell the princess that the episode's cancelled," Spike said sadly.

“Ok Spike,” Rainbow Dash slowly nodded. She turned to her fellow pegasus friend. “You gonna be ok there, Fluttershy?”

Fluttershy sniffed as she gave a small smile in response. “I think I’ll be ok.”

With Applejack carrying Twilight and Rarity and Rainbow helping Fluttershy to her hooves, the group began to exit Carousel Boutique. Fluttershy turned her head as she noticed Pinkie Pie did not move from her spot, her head still hanging low.

“Um... aren’t you coming too, Pinkie Pie?” the timid pegasus asked

“I’ll be along in a minute, guys.” Pinkie said.

The dragon slowly turned to the quiet Pinkie Pie. “Are you sure you’re going to be OK, Pinkie?”

“Yeah. I’ll be… I’ll be fine,” she lied.

The ponies made their way out of the boutique. Spike lingered for a few seconds, keeping a worried eye on Pinkie. He then made his way out the boutique in order to execute the latest instructions, leaving Pinkie all alone inside. Only one thought running through the pink pony's mind. She had failed. She had failed the show. She had failed the fans. She had failed everypony in Ponyville, and all of Equestria for that matter. But most importantly, she had failed her friends in the worst way possible. They had all trusted her to help them get through the summer, and this was where that trust had led them? Pinkie's mane went flat as the full weight of her current dilemma dawned on her. She wept silently.

Pinkie continued to sit on the floor, crying for a few minutes when she heard a chorus of singing ponies outside the door, seemingly warming up for the big musical number. Pinkie snapped out of her crying as she remembered the upcoming musical number that had to be called off now. She went outside to break the news to the chorus.

“Um excuse me everypony,” she announced. “I'm sorry, but we had an emergency come up so we had to cancel the episode. We won’t be able to do the song this time.”

The news was met with a series of shocked shouts, exasperated groans, and concerned murmurs from the chorus ponies. Pinkie held up her hooves in defense.

“I’m very sorry, everypony but I can’t explain right now. I gotta go!” Pinkie galloped away to catch up with her five other friends, leaving behind a chorus shocked into silence. One of the ponies of the group threw up her hooves in frustration.

“Great! Now what are we supposed to do?”

An awkward silence followed as the chorus ponies tried to come up with an answer. After a few seconds, one of the ponies shrugged an answer.

“It’s just a jump to the left?”

All at once, the ponies suddenly jumped to their left as a sudden rock and roll riff began to play out of nowhere.

“And then a step to the right!!!”