• Published 23rd Apr 2017
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Magic School Days - Dogger807

When the CMC asked Discord to help them attend magic school, he pulled an owl out of his hat. Only he didn't exactly have a hat. Which was okay, since their new school had a singing one laying around. Where the hay was Hogwarts anyway?

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Chapter 27: Testing Protocols

In the Gryffindor common room, the first-year victims of Twilight's overcharged howler watched from their virtual penalty box as all the Gryffindor upper-years pitched in. After he had recovered, Percy had dragooned the others into cleanup duty, while expressly forbidding the first-years from moving more than three paces away from their corner.

The fifth-years and above did the bulk of the heavy lifting, putting their lessons to good use. Some took time out to coach the younger students, taking advantage of the opportunity to use a real-world scenario. Soot was vanished, and furniture was returned to its normal locations with no physical effort. It was no exaggeration to say that the cleanup of the room took less time than the recovery from the shock of the howler.

All the while, the first-years watched the proceedings with varying degrees of dismay. Word of what had happened, and why, had spread like wildfire. The others worked with divided attention, warily eyeing the first-years while they kept their ears open for the sound of wings.

Once the cleaning was complete, the saner members of the house retreated to safer environs while the elder Weasleys cleaned the penalty box and its inmates. As the twins commandeered a couch, Percy ran his wand over Apple Bloom. "All right," he said. "You're clean. Now sit on the couch, the lot of you, so we can finish this discussion."

“Actually,” George said somberly, “after that howler, I think they get the point.”

His twin nodded in agreement. “We should let the girls go and take Ron and Ginny upstairs to finish this as family.”

“Upstairs would hardly be private.” Percy shook his head. “Let’s go find an unused classroom instead.”

Ginny shot to her feet with false bravado. “These girls are wards of Clan Weasley.” As the Crusaders stood by to back her up, she continued, “That makes them family.”

“It would seem,” George started.

“That you have a few more things to tell us,” Fred finished.

“So, let’s all go find that classroom, shall we?” Percy said.

“We could just go to your trunk,” Sweetie suggested. Being the center of attention for something good was bad enough. Having to take a walk of shame was almost more than she could bear.

“Right now, I don’t trust you to come right back down, if you go up to get one of your trunks.” Percy crossed his arms.

“Not our trunks,” Apple Bloom said, “your trunk. Show him, Scoots.”

Scootaloo reached into a robe pocket and pulled out a shrunken package. “Your father brought this with him, but he did say it was only half the order.” She then placed the package on the ground before tapping it three times with her wand. The package grew the size of a large textbook. A quick glance inside revealed eleven miniature trunks in a variety of woods and finishes.

“Yup,” Sweetie Belle said, looking over Scootaloo’s shoulder, “looks like he started with the standard ones.” She dipped her hands in the package and extracted three trunks. “Here you go.” She offered a matched set to the twins while holding a slightly different model to Percy.

“We can’t accept those,” Percy said shaking his head. “While we appreciate the thought, we need to stop accepting such expensive gifts.”

“Your father has already said it was okay,” Sweetie Belle countered, thrusting the new luggage toward them once more.

Gingerly, one of the twins took one and turned it over in his hands. “Is this going to try and eat us?”

The other twin said, “Because we are finishing this conversation, regardless.”

“It might, if you open it without binding it to yourselves first.” Scootaloo urged, “Go ahead and give it a try.”

Percy accepted the remaining trunk and sighed. “I’m sure you want to give out the rest of your gifts. We’ll continue this talk after supper.”

“What our dear brother means to say is . . .”

“'We want to play with our new toys a bit before getting back to business.'”

“That and 'thanks, we really appreciate your generosity.'”

“Yes,” Percy said solemnly. “Thank you.”

“So, we can go now?” Apple Bloom asked hopefully.

“Yes,” Percy started, but that was as far as he got before the first-years made a mad dash for the girls’ dormitory stairs.

“Mind the!” Fred yelled just as a loud gong noise shook the walls in the room.

“Never mind,” George finished, chuckling.

“I forgot all about that,” Ron said from the bottom of the pile of first-years

Juggling three full grocery bags, Elisa Bates unlocked the front door of her apartment with a practiced ease. The cozy apartment wasn't much, but it was home, and it was the best she could afford for her daughter and herself. Many times, she had been tempted to take on another job so that she would have the means to give her daughter everything she deserved, but that would mean she would have no time to spend with little Abagail. Still, she was determined to do everything in her power to help her daughter succeed where she, herself, had not.

Putting her keys on the small dining room table, the plain-looking woman called out, “Abagail, I’m home!”

“Okay mum!” her daughter called out from her room.

Elisa set down the bags on the table and went to glance in on her daughter. The eleven-year-old was sitting at her desk, taking sips from a coffee mug. The mother asked, “Did you finish your homework?”

“Yes, mum.” Abagail replied, with the annoyed tone that all children used to answer that question. She continued in a plaintive wail. “Can I go out and play?”

“You're still grounded,” Elisa said, not falling for the obvious trick. “Maybe next time you’ll think before you pull stunts like that.”

“Yes, mum.” The girl sighed and went back to her drink.

Satisfied that all was well, Elisa went back to the kitchen to put the groceries away. She was dismayed to find a small mess. It looked like her daughter had tried to cook something. Bits of dried herbs still sat on the cutting board, and scraps of different vegetables were scattered about the counter. Still, a smile graced her lips. It looked as though her daughter had tried to cook something that didn’t come out of a can. This was an improvement, and she wasn’t about to spoil it by fussing over the clutter. Sitting on the stove, slowly simmering, was the rest of the . . . tomato soup?

Not wanting to waste food, Elisa poured the remaining liquid into a mug and swirled it around. She recognized the bits of herb floating in the mix, but not much else. Overall, it didn’t look too bad. Without too much trepidation, she brought it to her lips for a taste. It was more bitter than she had been expecting, with maybe too much thyme, but otherwise palatable. Shrugging, she added a little salt before finishing it off.

“They're in here.” Apple Bloom’s voice came as the lid to the trunk was opened. “Ah can smell the tea.”

“Yeah,” Seamus yelled, breaking the silence. “We’re down here.”

As the Crusaders led the way to the sitting room, they found that the room's warmth had been overpowered by Hermione's despair. She had stopped crying, but she now sat sullenly as Parvati and Lavender continued to hug her. The boys sat and watched, unsure of how to act, afraid to make a sound. All the while, the tea cooled, forgotten.

Dean could no longer contain his curiosity. He asked, "Do you guys know what that loud noise was? Parvati wouldn’t let us leave to investigate. She says we have to lay low for the rest of the week, at least.”

“Y'all know what a howler is?” Apple Bloom asked as she led the other into the room.

“That didn’t sound like any howler I’ve ever heard of,” Parvati objected.

“What’s a howler?” Harry and Hermione asked together.

“It’s a red letter that yells at you, then explodes,” Scootaloo informed them, carrying a box down the stairs. “Apparently, it’s what witches send their children when they can't be there in person.”

“That didn’t sound like yelling,” Seamus noted.

“They need to practice that part of the spell,” Sweetie admitted, “but they were spot on with the exploding portion.”

“We need to not give them reasons to practice that spell,” Apple Bloom insisted. “Mah ears are still ringing.”

“Um, yeah,” Lavender said to change the subject. “What took you guys so long?”

“We got an earful from my father,” Ron griped taking a large portion of vanilla biscuits from the tea tray and passing half to Apple Bloom. “Then, when we got to the tower, the twins and Percy had a go.”

“I’m beginning to think hunting acromantulas is a bad idea,” Scootaloo said seriously.

“No . . .” Dean drawled in mock astonishment, “you don’t say.”

Meanwhile, Ginny was staring at Apple Bloom with her mouth hanging open.

“Waa?” Apple Bloom asked around a mouth full of biscuit.

“How’d you do that?” Ginny asked in awe.

“Doo waaf?” Apple Bloom said messily.

“How’d you get my brother to share?” Ginny waved in her brother’s direction. “I’m his sister, and he’s never shared sweets with me. If anything, I have to hide them from him just to get a crumb.”

“Ginny!” Ron growled, losing some crumbs from his mouth.

“It’s true,” Ginny growled back.

“You do know we’ll be going to supper soon,” Hermione admonished, looking from Apple Bloom to Ron. “If you eat all those biscuits you won’t have any . . . You know what, forget I was going to say that.”

“Waa une?” Ron asked, holding a biscuit out toward Hermione.

“Ewwww!” Lavender said looking away. “Don’t talk with your mouth full!”

Ron shrugged and stuffed the biscuit into his mouth.

“All right,” Ginny said, “who are you and what have you done with my brother? You’ve got the table manners down right, but my brother doesn’t share.”

Ron glared at her as he demolished another biscuit.

“We need to work on his manners,” Parvati stated, and all the girls, except Scootaloo and Apple Bloom, nodded.

Having left the beetle in her room, Abigail walked into the kitchen. Mug in hand, she went directly to the stove. “Mum? Did you pour the rest of my potion down the drain?”

“No,” Elisa said from her spot on the couch, watching the tiny telly, “that would be a waste. It wasn’t bad, just needed a touch of salt.” She smacked her lips thoughtfully, “Where ever did you get that recipe?”

“From my beetle.”

“That’s nice,” Elisa said with a chuckle. “You have a very smart beetle.”

“Yeah,” Abagail agreed. Then after a pause, she continued, “He infused the potion with his power, by the way.”

“Oh? How’d he do that?”

Abigail shuddered as she made a face. “You don’t want to know.”

The Gryffindor first-year boys’ dorm room was a hive of activity, the occupants kneeling as they dealt with their current task. Even without accommodations for the resident unicorn, some would have compared the room to a stable.

“I can’t believe they bought each of us a trunk,” Seamus said as he transferred his belongings from his old trunk into the new one. “They seem real serious about taking care of herd members.”

“They sure like giving gifts,” Dean agreed, descending into his own trunk with an armful of clothes. “Although, all those statements about taking care of their stallions sounded kind of possessive, didn’t they?”

“I’m not sure it’s normal,” Neville said, “but I’m not complaining. I’m happy with the way things are going.”

“I’m pretty sure we left normal behind once we boarded the express,” Harry said trying not to let the other boys see his clothes as he transferred them, “and I’m glad we did.”

“Still,” Dean called out, “I can’t help thinking that we’re missing something obvious and important.”

“They’re girls,” Seamus said. “My dad says you’re not supposed to understand them. He says that once one of them sets their eyes on you, the best thing to do is just say ‘yes dear’ a lot and do whatever they tell you.”

“That doesn’t seem fair,” Harry said turning to Seamus. “What do you do when seven set their eyes on you?”

Seamus shrugged. “Say ‘yes dear’ seven times as much, I guess. Although, there are five of us; so, that probably cuts back on the chores.”

“Hey,” Dean yelled from in his trunk, “tell Ron that there are a couple of boxes of those vanilla biscuits in my kitchen. He probably has a couple in his as well.”

“Yaff!” Ron called, spaying crumbs. “Tharr whurrr!”

Earlier that day, Applejack had brought over a small bag of "owl treats" to the library. The writing on the large sack Big Mac had received with the rest of his new pet supplies said that they were a good and healthy way to thank your owl for the deliveries it made. Seeing how Rarity and Twilight kept receiving owls from the girls, Applejack thought it would be a good idea if they both had some on hoof, just in case. In the inviting warmth of the library's foyer, an owl perched on Pinkie’s back and enjoyed the thoughtfulness, even as Twilight read the letter it had brought.

“What’s it say? What’s it say?” Pinkie asked excitedly as she watched Twilight scan the paper.

“It’s from Professor McGonagall,” Twilight answered. “She says I overcharged the last howler. It was unintelligible and blasted the entire common room. She recommends that when I send howlers in the future to only charge them with about a tenth of the power.”

“Oooooo,” Pinkie perked up, “you should practice that spell some more.”

“Pinkie.” Twilight shook her head. “I’m not sending the girls another howler so soon; that would just be cruel.”

“I know how to test it,” Pinkie said, enthusiastically bouncing up and down, drawing a startled shriek from the owl on her back. “I know how to test it!”

“Um, okay.” Twilight agreed, “I guess we can give it another try.”

“I wanna do the voice! I wanna do the voice! I wanna do the voice!” Panicked, the owl pushed off its pulsating pink party pony perch and escaped through the still-open front door.

“Okay. Okay,” Twilight said, reaching out with her magic to snag paper, quill, and ink from the desk.

Inside a brand-new trunk, on a brand-new dresser sat a battered old cage. There was nothing special about the cage; it was just a typical wire cage whose ilk could be found in any pet store, selling for a few pounds. It was made for smaller mammals, like an ordinary rat, a lazy, good-for-nothing rat, a beloved pet.

“There you goooz,” said the house elf that had just done her job. “Cage all nice nice and clean now. Fresh newz paper fors youz to chew on.”

Satisfied that her job was done, there was a small popping noise, and she was gone. The occupant of the cage wasn’t paying attention to the sound, though. This was not surprising since he was a rat. What was surprising was the way the animal was staring at the floor of its cage, almost as if it could read the writing on its new bedding material. But that was a truly ridiculous idea. Besides, why would a rat care about some guy named Black being freed from someplace called Azkaban? Most likely, the rat was just watching the magical moving pictures.

It turned out Percy’s trunk was set up differently than the girls'. The stairs still descended into a sitting room, but this one was larger, with three couches. Immediately to the left of the stairs was an archway that led to a study with a beautiful roll-top desk and several bookcases; all had a warm pecan finish. Even the kitchen was larger, sporting a full-sized dining set made from rustic pine. However, the current occupants were not present to admire the workmanship. The five youngest slumped onto one couch while the older brothers lounged on the other two.

“Are you going to yell at us some more?” Sweetie Belle sighed, once Percy found his seat.

“Nah.” The twin on the left said, “You get the point by now.”

“It’s not that we don’t admire your spirit,” the other twin said, “but as big brothers and as friends, well . . .”

“The thought of you getting eaten by giant spiders stops our hearts.”

“Giant spiders?” Ron paled and looked around worriedly. “What giant spiders?”

“Hello,” Scootaloo said, “we’ve only been yelled at about acromantulas all night now.”

“Acromantula are giant spiders?” Ron all but shrieked. “Why didn't you tell me they’re giant spiders?”

“An’ y’all call me oblivious,” Apple Bloom complained.

“Enough with the acromantulas,” Percy said, taking charge. “Unless we are given reason, the subject will not come up again.”

The first-years clearly cheered up at the proclamation and sat attentively.

“No what’s this about you three being wards of House Weasley?” Percy asked, broaching the next important subject.

“Father finalized an alliance with their families,” Ginny stated. “They’re family now.”

“Did he mention the terms of the alliance?” Percy asked as the twins watched silently.

“While here, we’re Weasley wards,” Sweetie Belle said. “When you travel to Equestria, you’re wards of our families.”

“Equestria?” Percy asked, confused. “I thought you were from America. Where’s Equestria.”

“Don’t rightly know how to get there from here.” Apple Bloom shrugged. “Discord brought us.”

“Yeah,” Scootaloo agreed with a nod, “but I’m sure it’s not close. Back home, humans are just myths. We didn’t even recognize them when we first got here, though we should have with how much Lyra talks about them.”

“Wait a minute.” Percy held up a hand. “You’re not human?” Then, after looking at his siblings’ lack of reaction. “And you all knew that already, didn’t you? Why am I always the last to find out about these things?”

“Does it really matter?” the twin on the right asked.

Percy pinched the bridge of his nose and said, “So, what are you then? Veela?”

“We’re ponies,” Sweetie Belle said while Apple Bloom and Scootaloo nodded.

Percy stared at her dumbly. “Could you repeat that?”

Ginny giggled and nudged Sweetie Belle in the side. “Go ahead and show him, he’s not going to believe you otherwise.”

With half lidded eyes, Sweetie asked her, “Are you going to scream again?”

“No,” Ginny insisted as she shook her head, “I’m past that.”

“Oh, okay.” Sweetie agreed and her human form melted away to be replaced by her smaller, true form.

Ginny held her breath to stifle her first reaction.

“See, Percy.” Sweetie smiled, “Ponnnniiiiieeeeeeeeeeeeesssssssssss.”

“I thought you said you weren’t going to do that,” Scootaloo calmly said as she watched Ginny force Sweetie to mangle her last word.

“I said I wouldn’t scream,” Ginny happily corrected. “This is hugging.”

“Sweetie Belle.” Percy said.

“Yeah?” Sweetie said in a strangled gasp.

“You’re a unicorn.” Percy asserted.


“Magah makes a whole lot more sense now,” Percy said

“Can’t breathe!”

“Ginny,” one twin said, “she’s supposed to be white . . .”

“not blue,” the other twin finished. “You might want to let up a bit.”

“Sorry,” Ginny apologized, moving Sweetie onto her lap.

“This actually explains so much,” Percy said as the twins snickered.

Ginny started to scratch Sweetie Belle behind the ears.

“Oooo,” the little pony moaned, “don’t stop doing that.”

“Anymore big surprises?” Percy asked, still eyeing Sweetie Belle.

“Well,” Scootaloo said rubbing her chin with her hand, “we do have your dis-wash-ery spending keys to give you, but that’s about it.”

“Yah know, Scoots,” Apple Bloom said, “even Ah’m going ta have ta call you on that one.”

From beyond the closed lid of the trunk a voice cried out, “Why is there a unicorn in our room?”

As she passed the rustic homes along the streets of Ponyville, a white pony with a two-toned electric blue mane marched to the beat of her own; drummer be damned. She bobbed her head to the rhythm of music only she could hear, even without the large pair of earphones she always wore. Oval purple lenses on the sunglasses she wore day and night left other ponies wondering whether she used them to see things not as they were, but as she thought they should be.

She lived in a world of music, and the gear she wore guaranteed that it would always be close at hoof, just as she liked it. Although it had been fun, the long day at the studio had been exhausting. She was ready to order her favorite take-out and get some shut-eye.

Wordlessly, she approached her house, and with a smile she saw that somepony had left a bright red envelope wedged in the doorframe. Whatever it was, it appeared too good for the normal mail system. She reached out with her magic and brought the paper closer for inspection. In blue ink, her name popped out in stark contrast to the red. Using her telekinesis, she started to open the letter, only to have it leap from her grasp.


At the word "explode", the white mare dove behind the topiary. She huddled behind the tree as she gritted her teeth and braced herself for the explosion. A full ten seconds after the announcement, she poked her head out and looked at the red letter; it had followed her. In a surprisingly boyish-sounding voice she said, “Dang! Pinkie, that was a rough prank; for a second there I thought it was actually going to ex . . ..”


Once the smoke cleared, the extent of the damage was fully revealed. Her spiky mane had been swept back by the force of the explosion, and both her glasses and her headphones now lay on the ground. Soot covered her face and the front of her neck, except where her glasses and her headphones had been. The trauma had shrunk her pupils to pin pricks.

Still staring off into space, she said “ . . .they need to work on the timer.”

He had to get out of Britain! He had to get out of Britain! He had to get out of bloody Britain!

His worst fear had been realized!

His days were numbered!

Heedless of any noise he might be making, he rushed down the small tunnel behind the castle wall. There were places only he could go. Being as small as he was, he could find passage where others would be stranded.

He had to get out of Britain!

Wait!? Was that menthol?

Professor Sprout was walking down the castle passageway talking to her fellow Head of House. "Arguing" was more descriptive; they were having a difference of opinion.

“He’s harmless, Serverus,” she said. “What little damage his bites do is almost instantly healed. The worst he could possibly do is give someone a heart attack when he jumps at you.”

“It is an abomination.” Professor Snape sneered.

“They said that about the first hippogriff,” she countered.

“It is my duty to remove it from this world, permanently.”

“You shouldn’t do that,” Professor Sprout argued. “Think of the potential benefits. With a little coaxing, he will come when called. Why, he’s even proven to be a handy way to cure small cuts and bruises. Several of my girls have said he removes pimples effortlessly, leaving their skin smooth and unblemished.”


After watching the spectacle run past them in the corridor, Professor Sprout continued, “And apparently he controls the rat population.”

“We have wards for that,” Snape responded. “That was a student’s pet. What are we to do when it graduates to attacking cats.”

“You mean like Mrs. Norris?”

Snape considered the possibilities, “You may be right; perhaps we should keep it around for a while.”

“It worked it worked!” Pinkie exclaimed, hopping into the library. “You could understand what it said. This one only took five seconds after the words for it to explode.”

Twilight looked up from where she was writing a letter to the princesses, summarizing their correspondences with the human world. “That’s good to hear, Pinkie,” she said. “I can easily tweak that.”

“Let’s do another test.” Pinkie balanced on her hind legs and excitedly clapped here forehooves together.

“Okay, just a second,” Twilight said reaching for another blank page.

A few minutes later she was out in front of her library, watching Pinkie pronking off into the distance. “Be careful with that!” she called as a reminder.


Startled, Twilight turned towards the sound and came muzzle to muzzle with another pony, a frowning, once white pony who now looked like an escapee from a minstrel show

“Um, hello,” Twilight said, noticing that there were several more ponies in similar condition, all showing the same level of annoyance. “Where are your glasses and headphones?”

Reason took time to work its way through the terror the rat brain was projecting. The slime was playing with him, keeping just close enough to prolong the chase, never getting too close and definitely not falling behind. He had to end this. In an otherwise empty corridor, the rat turned midstride and shifted.

He wasn’t sure how slime could look confused, but this one managed it. Just like that, the tables were turned. Proving that having a brain is not always necessary for sound judgement, the blue blob reversed direction and fled.

Satisfied, the rat shifted again, and prepared to continue on its way. Carefully, it made its way out of the castle. With freedom in sight, it began to cross the vast lawn. Without warning, a gloved hand appeared and snatched him up off the ground.

Startled, the rat found himself gawking into a pair of mismatched eyes.

“Euridice was right; you’ll do nicely.”

After spending time helping Rarity in her shop, Spike made his way home, dazed. She had kissed him on the cheek, making the whole day worth it. Every day, he was getting a little closer.

With a goofy grin on his face he entered the library. To his surprise, a small group of soot-faced ponies were present, watching Twilight.

Glancing at the multitude of blackboards he read, “I will, under no circumstances, give Pinkie anything even remotely resembling explosives.”

Looking back and forth between the soot-faced ponies and the blackboards he said, “Yeah, I don’t even know the whole story here, and I can already tell she deserves this.”

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