• Published 24th Sep 2018
  • 2,210 Views, 325 Comments

Railway Adventure - The Blue EM2

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Cheerilee pulled up in the parking lot at Ponyville narrow gauge station, with Elaina’s car in tow. In the platform No. 2 was waiting, with Button Mash and Sweetie Belle propped against the side of the engine.

“Is something wrong?” Sweetie Belle asked.

“What's going on, Mom?” Button asked.

“Can you get us up to Everfree Junction? Scootaloo called, saying something bad had happened, and she sounded quite upset.” Cheerilee explained.

“I’ll get the engine hooked up to the inspector’s saloon,” Button answered, and hopped in the engine’s cab. Without a second thought, he opened the regulator, and away he went.

Presently, he came back with the coach, and both Cheerilee and Elaina climbed aboard. Button sounded the whistle, and away they went!

The train slowed to a stop at Everfree Junction. Cheerilee got out and ran across the platform to Scootaloo. Her daughter’s eyes were puffy and red, indicating she’d been crying. “Scoot!” she cried. “What happened?” She brought her daughter into an embrace.

Scootaloo said very little, only “Our hard work, ruined.”

“What do you mean?”

Spirit of Everfree is no more.”

“How?” Cheerilee asked. “What happened?”

Apple Bloom answered that question. “It’s currently down the embankment between here and Top Station, in pieces. Cozy Glow spotted it and informed us.”

Cheerilee’s heart sank. All those precious hours spent working on the engine, gone. She simply hugged her child tighter, mother and daughter mourning a tragic loss.

Rumble stepped over. “Pip’s gone to get the crane. We’ll fish the parts up and reassemble the engine.”

Scootaloo broke from her mother’s embrace, and looked at him. “You think it’s gonna be that simple, huh?” she growled, staring at him. “Just glue it back together? It doesn’t work that way, Rumble!” She was clearly quite angry now. “How on earth are we gonna do a repair of this scale with just two weeks to reopening? Restoring it the first time was hard enough, now we’ll have to start all over again!” She collapsed into a fresh round of tears.

Rumble resolved to fix this, and hugged her himself. “Hey, easy,” he said. “We can fix this. But we can’t if we don’t pull ourselves together.”

Cozy Glow wandered over. “Who would do something like this?” she asked, as a flatbed with the remains of the engine came past. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KylMqxLzNGo

It was heartbreaking to see, a once magnificent machine reduced to nothing but a pile of scrap metal. The frames were buckled, most of the rodding was missing, the cylinders were torn, the tank and cab had come clean off the body, there were coal stains all over the frames, and the boiler was dented and broken. It was clear to all that the engine was a total writeoff.

“No,” Cheerilee whispered. “Whoever did this, is going to pay.”

“Ya don’t need to look far.”

Cheerilee looked over to her right. Standing there, was Applejack.

“How did ya get here?” Apple Bloom asked, confused.

Applejack simply shoved her little sister out of the way and stormed over to Cozy Glow, grabbing her arm. “You are in a lotta trouble, miss,” she growled.

“What?” Cozy replied, clearly terrified.

“Ya can drop the act, Cozy Glow,” Applejack answered, her voice dripping with hate and malice. “Ah know ya did this. An’ ta think ah trusted ya. Ya clearly haven’t changed at all.”

“That’s preposterous!” Sweetie Belle cried.

“It makes perfect sense,” Applejack continued. “Ya see, she was the only one between the two stations at the time this happened. So she musta been the one to derail the engine.”

“That’s called coincidence!” Button Mash said. “So what if she was between the two stations at the time, that stretch is 6 miles long! That’s an assertion, not actual proof!”

“Ya really are dumb,” Applejack snorted. “She’s clearly guilty. People don’t change, they just pretend. She’s a wolf in sheep’s clothing!”

Apple Bloom stepped forward, went on tiptoe, and leaned directly in her sister’s face. “No, sis,” she replied. “You’re wrong.”

“Excuse me?” Applejack asked. “Have Ah got applesauce in mah ears, or did you just call me a liar?”

“Ah didn’t call ya a liar, I just said you were wrong.” Apple Bloom continued quickly. “What would Cozy gain from destroying a dream she’s worked hard on?”

“What if she were just pretendin’? What if she were simply tryin’ to make ya think she was interested, whereas all she wanted to do was cause chaos?”

“You’re basing this on a ‘what if?’ Cozy exclaimed.

“Hold everything!” called a voice.

There was Pip, with a pair of youths. Snips and Snails. “They are the ones behind this,” he said. “They derailed the engine on Sonata’s orders. Question is, what would she want with us?”

“Doesn’t matter,” Apple Bloom replied. “Call the police, and get them outta here. They are not welcome on the railway, ever.” Both of them were escorted past, and into a waiting carriage. Bloom turned to her sister. “Ah think you owe Cozy an apology,” she said.

Applejack looked at Cozy. “Sorry, sugarcube,” she said.

Cozy simply nodded. “You are forgiven," she replied. “But why did you guys stand up for me?”

“Because we care,” Apple Bloom replied.

“Because we trust you,” Sweetie Belle added.

“Because I wouldn’t throw somebody else under the bus,” Scootaloo chimed in.

“Because we value you more than silver or gold,” said Rumble.

“Because the world would be a dimmer place without you,” said Button.

“Because...you are our friend, and friends stand by each other,” finished Pipsqeak.

Cozy said nothing, but simply sobbed. But they were not tears of fright or sorrow, but tears of joy.

Apple Bloom saw this. “Group hug!” she called, as the station speakers started to play music. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3HPOW1pQ-Ug

Once they were done, they looked at the mess in front of them. “Looking at the damage,” said Pip, “we have a long road ahead of us.”

Scootaloo looked over. “What do you think, Apple Bloom?” she asked. “Do you think we can fix her?”

Apple Bloom looked over again, with a smirk. “Is the Pope Catholic?” she replied.

It took them a very long time to iron out all the problems. New frames were cut in the workshop, and siderods repaired. The new cylinder casings were mounted, and the cab was successfully repaired. The boiler, in spite of the external damage, was actually quite easy to fix. By the next morning, with a new lick of paint, Spirit of Everfree shone once more.

Sweetie Belle smiled. “We did it!” she cried.

“Canterlot Movie Club Engine Restorers! Yay!” chorused one and all.

“We’re not done yet,” said a voice behind them. It was Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon.

“What do ya mean?” asked Apple Bloom.

“We need to prove this railway can work, and that will only happen...on opening day,” Silver Spoon said.

The others gulped. They still had a lot to do.

Author's Note:

Penultimate chapter! Do you think they will be able to pull off the opening day?

The crash was based on the photos of LADAS, an engine of the Snowdon Mountain Railway, which was destroyed in an accident in 1896.

See you tomorrow!