• Published 23rd Sep 2017
  • 6,714 Views, 429 Comments

Repercussions - shallow15

After Sunset Shimmer is attacked and put into a coma, her friends try to figure out who did it and why. (Not an Anon-A-Miss story)

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Saturday Morning I

Saturday morning. The sun rose over the mountains that framed the valley. Slowly, the streetlights began to wink out. In the houses and apartments across the city plumbing gushed, coffee makers percolated, breakfast foods sizzled, and other sounds of people awaking were heard as the sun continued to climb.

In seven residences scattered across the suburbs, seven young women began their day. All of them were occupied with thoughts of the previous few days. Some were worried, some were angry, and others were just trying to keep their emotions from running rampant.

Fluttershy refilled the bird feeder on her back porch, while several birds chirped and fluttered around her head. She smiled as she closed the feeder back up.

“All right, everyone, breakfast is ready. Eat up!”

As the birds began eating, Fluttershy sat on one of the deck chairs at the patio table and watched them for a while. Her thoughts began to drift back to Sunset. The disappearance of her friend from... wherever she and Applejack had been when they touched Sunset's geode concerned her. She had no real proof, but she suspected the girls had wound up in some sort of magical representation of Sunset's mind.

But if that was Sunset's mind, where did she go? Fluttershy drummed her fingers on the table as she thought. How can someone disappear from their own mind?

A squirrel dropped from the tree limb hanging over the porch and chittered at Fluttershy. She blinked and looked down. “Oh, hi, Rocky. How are you?”

More chittering. “Oh good, I'm glad. And how are the little ones?”

The squirrel chittered again and ran in circles for a moment. Fluttershy giggled.

“Well, I'm sure she'll think twice before eating those berries again.”

The squirrel sat up and chirped a few times. Fluttershy shook her head.

“No, I'm fine. It's just been a stressful few days. One of my friends has been in the hospital, and so has another girl I know. We've been trying to figure out who put them there.”

The squirrel let out a series of clicks and chirps. Fluttershy gave it a small smile.

“That's very nice of you, but I think my friends and I have it covered.”

She reached into the bag of birdseed, extracted a sunflower seed and handed it to the squirrel. It quickly shoved it into its mouth. Fluttershy smiled again and got up. “I have to get ready for work. Thanks for chatting with me, Rocky.”

The squirrel chittered again, muffled thanks to the seed in its mouth, then scampered off the table and back up the tree. Fluttershy opened the sliding glass door leading back into the house. She put the birdseed away and headed for the bathroom to shower.

As she scrubbed, her thoughts returned to the events of the previous night. After talking at the Tasty-Freeze, the girls had compared schedules and it was decided that if there hadn't been any changes in the next day or two, all six would go back to Sunset's hospital room Monday afternoon and try to reach her again.

I hope we can get her back, she thought. I think we're going to need her really soon.

Applejack placed a large bucket underneath one of the trees in the field behind the Apple house. She looked up at the apples hanging from the tree, then re-positioned the bucket. She looked at the other two she had also placed under the tree. Satisfied, she gripped her geode. It flashed to life and the farm girl felt the magic surge through her muscles. She cracked her knuckles and began stretching.

While it had been agreed that visits across the mirror should be limited to the princess, Starlight, and Sunset for now, Princess Twilight had used the journal to allow the girls to talk with their Equestrian counterparts. During Applejack's time with the journal, the two had exchanged anecdotes about life on their farms, as well as traded techniques which the other hadn't considered using.

AJ was going to try one of those techniques today. The Equestria Applejack had talked about apple bucking, which allowed her to clear all the apples off a tree in a few seconds. While it sounded good in theory, Applejack didn't think she'd be able to do the same, at least not without breaking something. But, with her newly endowed super strength, it now
seemed like apple bucking might actually be feasible.

Applejack finished stretching and took a deep breath. Naturally, Equestria Applejack was a pony, and her apple bucking technique was geared for a quadruped. After consulting with Sunset and Princess Twilight, Applejack figured she had a way to get the same result without needing four legs to do it.

She closed her eyes, took another deep breath, stepped back, turned ninety degrees, and unleashed a mighty side kick that struck the trunk of the tree with a loud crack. The limbs rustled and Applejack smiled as most of the apples fell from the branches and landed in the buckets. There were still a few stragglers, but overall, she was pleased with the results.

She set up the ladder she had brought out with the buckets and began picking the remaining apples from the tree. Ironically, hard work was the way she liked to relax. There was something tranquil to her of being out in the field, picking fruit, hearing the wind in the leaves and the reassuring thump of the apples landing in the bucket. When she had described the feeling to the girls, Rarity said it was almost Zen. Applejack didn't know about that, but she always felt better after a couple of hours in the field.

Unlike Equestria Applejack, the Apple family didn't rely entirely on Sweet Apple Acres as their source of income. Applejack was jealous that her pony version literally had acres of land covered in fruit trees. Here, Sweet Apple Acres was only about five acres total, and those apples that weren't sold as is were used primarily to make cider in the fall. It made enough money so that the Apples could live comfortably, but that still meant Granny Smith had to work as CHS's lunch lady, and Applejack had a part-time job in the winter months at the smoothie stand at the mall to keep up that level of comfort. They weren't wealthy, but they did all right.

To her, there was something real about working in the field and the trees. The smoothie stand job was okay, but it never felt real to her. It was okay, but being cooped up in a concrete box with fluorescent lighting for eight hours three times a week just didn't have the same sense of accomplishment to her.

Which wasn't to say she looked down on the other people who worked at the mall. She was there during the holidays, she knew how hard those people worked. But she always felt like she had accomplished more when she could actually get outside and use her hands as opposed to running blenders.

She dropped the last apple into the bucket and climbed down the ladder. She grabbed her water bottle from where it rested against one of the buckets and took a swig. She reached down and hoisted one of the now-full buckets up and onto the wagon she had brought everything out on.

She was avoiding thinking about it. She knew that. She didn't want to think about what they were up against. About how this time, the stakes had gotten very high. She had been here before, and it had nearly destroyed her when it happened.

She knew the possible pain they were facing all too well. She also knew that if anything happened to any of her girls (and yes, ever since Princess Twilight had brought them back together, Applejack had always thought of them as her girls) it could destroy the others. With the exception of Sunset, none of them had ever experienced that kind of loss.

Applejack frowned, remembering what Rarity had told her about Pinkie and Rainbow's reactions after Pepperdance had been attacked. If Sunset or any of the others died, she knew those two would be utterly crushed. So would the others.

And so would she, if she were being honest. Ever since Princess Twilight came through the mirror, Applejack felt she didn't have one sister; she had six (including Princess Twilight herself). That number changed to seven with Sunset after the Battle of the Bands, and then to eight after their Twilight had transferred to CHS. Her girls were more than friends, they were family. And there was almost nothing Applejack wouldn't do to keep her family safe,

She put the last bucket on the wagon, grabbed her water bottle and headed for another tree.