• Published 12th Feb 2019
  • 2,941 Views, 338 Comments

Pony Predators of Equestria - Pentarctagon



What is a pony? After the Changeling invasion, debates rage across Equestria over that simple question. There is a follow up that nopony thinks to ask, however: what if they weren't the only ones hiding?

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Chapter 8 Sister

Dawn glances at her hooves, then back at her fellow Crusaders, a nervous smile working its way onto her face, "So… uhh… yay?"

Sweetie Belle shakes her head, disappointment consuming her expression, "Nonono, not like that."

"Yeah, you have to say it with dedication, with passion," Scootaloo chimes in. "For example… "

Sweetie Belle, Applebloom, and Scootaloo all take a deep breath, prompting Dawn to preemptively fall to the ground and cover her ears with her hooves.

"YAY!!!"

Their shout goes off like a bomb, the branches of the shrub bending from the sheer force of it to momentarily reveal the dimming sky dominated by deep reds and oranges. Beneath the leaves, Dawn cringes against the onslaught of sound, her body sliding back several inches across the grass. Fortunately however, the blast ends as quickly as it began, Dawn standing and shaking her head a bit to clear it before looking up to find her new friends watching her expectantly.

"Alright, now you try," Scootaloo encourages her.

"yay"

"Louder."

"yay!"

"Louder!"

"YAY!"

"Put your back into it!"

Dawn sucks in as much air as her lungs can hold, "Y-pffhaha."

An uncontrolled exhalation interrupts Dawn's attempt to improve her shout, leaving her shaking on the ground and struggling for air.

Scootaloo blinks, the unexpected reaction pulling her out of her drill sergeant impression. She glances at her other friends before returning her attention to Dawn, a confused and slightly miffed expression on her face, "Uhh… what's so funny?"

"That doesn't… doesn't make… any sense… " Dawn gasps out between residual giggles.

"Yeah, it really doesn't, Scoots," Applebloom agrees. "Ah mean you can put yer back into liftin' things and shiftin' things, but that doesn't really apply to shoutin'."

"Hmm," Sweetie Belle sits and taps her chin thoughtfully, "how about 'Put your lungs into it'?"

"I guess… I don't think it was that funny though." Scootaloo shrugs, quickly losing interest in the topic, "Anyway, you definitely need some practice, buuut I think you're good enough – for now at least."

Applebloom steps forward, helping a mostly recovered Dawn to her hooves, "Yeah, and we've got a whole bunch more important things to do now since yer joinin' the Crusaders! We need to get you yer Crusadin' cape, do the induction ceremony, endure Scootaloo's super-long initiation speech – which is the real test if you ask me-"

"Hey, I revised it!" Scootaloo interjects, "It's not that long anymore, less than a page!"

Applebloom fixes her with a flat stare, "Scootaloo, it's on a scroll; the entire thing is one long page."

Sweetie Belle sighs, rolling her eyes, "Can you two stop arguing? It's going to be dark soon, so if we're going to get any of that stuff done before bed, we need to head over to the clubhouse right away."

Scootaloo waves a hoof dismissively, "We don't have to leave right now. The clubhouse isn't that far."

"It's all the way back at Sweet Apple Acres!" Sweetie Belle exclaims, "And you'd be pulling a third pony!"

"Why would she be doin' that?" Applebloom asks, raising an eyebrow, "Dawn can fly, remember? Honestly Ah'm more worried about being able to get through the initiation in time. Ah don't wanna stop halfway through and have ta start again tomorrow."

"Plus, we don't even have her cape yet," Scootaloo points out, "so we'd need to somehow make her one before going to the clubhouse. We can't do the initiation without the cape after all, it just wouldn't feel right."

Sweetie Belle smiles, "Actually, I made some extras since they get ripped and dirty all the time, so we'd just have to stop by Rarity's on the way there."

"Hey!" Dawn waves her hooves to draw their attention, "I don't have time for any of that stuff, I need to get into the hospital to see if my sister is ok." She squints towards the leaf-obscured sky, "Besides, it's still way too bright to be going all the way out to that farm. My eyes would probably shrivel up before we got halfway there."

Applebloom pokes her head out of the shrub, the setting sun casting long shadows across the lawn in front of the hospital, "What're you talkin' about? It's not bright. Heck, the sun's goin' down, it's startin' to get dark."

Scootaloo lets out a long-suffering sigh, "Applebloom… "

"What?"

"She is a vampony."

Applebloom casts a curious look at Dawn, "So yer nocturnal or somethin'?"

Dawn nods, "Yeah. I was sleeping when you found me, actually."

Applebloom frowns, the statement not sitting well with her, "But if yer sister's in the hospital, why're you sleepin' out here?"

Dawn lowers her head, fidgeting nervously, "I was… I was scared, ok? My sister had just been attacked and hurt and she wasn't moving and then she was taken away by some ponies but nopony is supposed to know we even exist and I didn't know what to do. So I thought maybe I could just wait here for it to be night again and then sneak in and rescue her. Or something. I kind of fell asleep halfway through coming up with a plan."

"Well come on then, let's go!" Scootaloo declares, circling around behind Dawn to begin pushing her out of the bush, "No friend of ours is gonna be kept from visiting her injured sister!"

Dawn however resists Scootaloo's good intentions by digging her hooves into the ground, though she still slowly inches forward anyway despite her best efforts.

Sweetie Belle blocks their path, placing a hoof on Dawn's chest to stop her movement entirely, "Knock it off, Scootaloo, she just said it was too bright out for her. And it's not like we could just walk in there anyway, we'd probably cause a panic. Or at least she would."

Scootaloo stops pushing to look around Dawn at Sweetie Belle, "I doubt it. It's not like anypony freaked out about the vampony attack last night, so why would they care about one walking into the hospital?"

"Hey, that wasn't us!" Dawn protests, using the opportunity to sidestep out from between the two fillies, "It was the other freaky pony who attacked my sister!"

"Wait, let me get this straight. There was another vampony involved in the attack?" Applebloom asks apprehensively, "So there's three vamponies in Ponyville and one of them really is evil?"

Dawn shakes her head, "I don't think any other vamponies besides me and my sister would be in Ponyville right now since the sun is still up, and the pony who attacked last night wasn't a vampony either. He was… something else." She shivers.

Applebloom scratches her head, "And y'all've been runnin' around Ponyville for how long?"

Dawn shrugs, "Well, I've been here my whole life, and the rest of my family has been here longer."

"How the heck have none of you been caught before now?" Applebloom inquires incredulously.

"We're really good at sneaking," Dawn answers with a hint of pride. "Plus, we're awake when you're asleep."

She grins, "And we can do this!"

Dawn closes her eyes and scrunches her face in concentration, her whole body tensing.

"You… can look constipated?" Scootaloo asks hesitantly after nothing happens.

Sweetie Belle facehoofs, "Really, Scootaloo?"

"Grrr… it's a lot harder when the sun's out," Dawn growls. She tries again, focusing every fiber of her being into her demonstration. Without warning, her body darkens and fades, vanishing into the ambient shadow cast by the shrubs.

"Whoa~" the three still visible fillies murmur in awe.

The spell doesn't last long though, and after a few seconds Dawn suddenly pops back into existence, panting heavily while small beads of sweat form across her body, "That's also how I was planning on sneaking into the hospital."

"And not to say that that's not cool and all," Applebloom says, "but Ah can't really imagine you sneakin' anywhere like that. You only lasted for a few seconds."

"It would be a lot easier if the sun wasn't out," Dawn grumbles, shooting an accusatory glare in the fiery light source's general direction.

"So we're gonna have to wait until it's night to help you sneak into the hospital?" Scootaloo groans, "There's got to be a better way. Preferably one where we don't have to wait… " she waves her hoof dismissively at the mostly hidden sky, "however long it is we'd have to wait."

Applebloom takes another look outside the shrub, squinting at the slowly lowering sun, "Looks like it's still over an hour till sundown."

"Why don't we go ask Twilight?" Sweetie Belle suggests, "I'm sure she'd be willing to help, and it would take a lot less time than waiting here for it to get dark."

Scootaloo nods enthusiastically at the timesaving idea, "All in favor say 'aye'."

"Aye."

"Aye!"

"Aye."

"Uhh… " Dawn shifts back and forth uneasily.

"What's the matter, Dawn?" Sweetie Belle asks, the other Crusaders watching her curiously as well.

"It's just… " Dawn pauses for a moment, glancing between her newfound friends, "it's just that nopony else at all is supposed to know we exist, so I'm not sure that telling another pony about me is going to make things any better."

Scootaloo rolls her eyes, "The whole town already knows about your sister and we know about you."

"And you told us you've got other family around Ponyville too," Applebloom adds.

"Yeah, so it's a bit late to try to keep any of this a secret," Scootaloo finishes.

"Well, when you put it that way… " Dawn nibbles her bottom lip some more, "Are you really sure Twilight would be willing to help though?"

Scootaloo, Sweetie Belle, and Applebloom nod confidently. Dawn's gaze flicks back and forth across the ground in front of her before she glances towards the hospital, letting out a sigh, "I guess… alright, aye. So how is this 'Twilight' going to be able to help anyway?"

The three other fillies look at her like she'd just asked why the sun rises every day.

"Be…cause she's a princess?" Sweetie Belle answers hesitantly, thrown off by the sheer oddity of the question.

Dawn tilts her head, "She is? So she's all important and powerful and stuff?"

Applebloom furrows her eyebrows, "Uhh, yeah. Yeah she is. Do you really not know who Twilight is?"

"Umm… no…?"

"But Ah thought you said you'd been here your whole life! How can you not know who Twilight is?!"

Dawn shakes her head, "I've been coming to Ponyville my whole life, but I live in the Everfree Forest."

"So you know Zecora at least, right?" Scootaloo asks.

Dawn frowns, "Who?"

Scootaloo sighs, "She lives in the Everfree too, she's a zebra."

Dawn's face lights up in recognition, "Oooh, I know her. Her rhyming is really annoying."

"So," Applebloom says, catching on, "if Ah said that Twilight is the alicorn who lives in a big tree, would that ring any bells?"

Dawn nods, "She is purple."

"She is lavender," Sweetie Belle corrects primly.

"Look, the point is, you know who we're talkin' about," Applebloom states, "'cause she's the one we're gonna ask for help."

Dawn again looks at them uneasily, "And you're sure she'll be willing to help?"

"She's the Princess of Friendship," Sweetie Belle reassures her. "She'll help anypony as long as they aren't plotting to take over Equestria. And even then all they have to do is apologize."

"Alright, so, I'll go get Twilight, bring her back here, and then we can all go in and meet your sister," Scootaloo says, walking off in the direction she had left her scooter.

"Wait!" Applebloom calls after her, "Yer goin' on yer own?"

"Yeah," Scootaloo replies from outside the shrub, "I'll be able to get there and back a lot faster if I don't have to pull you and Sweetie Belle along too."

Sweetie Belle's ears perk up, the proverbial light bulb flickering to life above her head, "Oh! And I'll go get a spare Crusader cape from Rarity's. You'll have your cape and you can use it to keep the sun out of your eyes!"

With that, the two fillies run off in different directions, leaving Applebloom and Dawn sitting in the shade of the shrub. An awkward silence falls between them, neither saying anything for a few minutes.

"So… " Applebloom ventures, "do vamponies like apples?"


"-and that's why Princess Luna is coming to Ponyville tonight," Twilight finishes. "Does anypony have any questions?"

She observes the crowd's reaction, the assembled ponies murmuring as they converse with their neighbors, sharing opinions and concerns, Nervous… annoyed… a lot of indifference… I suppose there's only so many crazy things that can happen before they all start to seem normal.

A hoof goes up in the crowd.

"Yes, Rainbowshine?"

"How many of them are there?"

"I don't know."

Another hoof goes up.

"Yes, Twinkleshine?"

"Are they friendly?"

"I don't know."

A third hoof appears, bouncing up and down with its owner.

Twilight sighs, "No, Pinkie, I don't know if they like parties."

Pinkie's hoof stays in the air, "You don't know if they do, or you don't know if they don't?"

"…Yes."

Pinkie sits back down, eyes narrowing as she looks off into the distance, stroking her invisible mustache contemplatively.

Twilight scans the crowd again, speaking when no more hooves are raised, "Alright, if nopony has any other questions, then I hope you all have a pleasant night."

With her speech finished, the crowd quickly starts to disperse, ponies heading back to their homes and shops. Twilight steps away from the podium and takes a deep breath, doing her best to calm her frazzled nerves. Spike meanwhile picks up her stack of notecards and begins to retrieve the ones that had dropped, making sure to place them all in the correct order.

"I'd say that went over pretty well, all things considered," Mayor Mare says, joining Twilight behind the podium. "Are you sure we shouldn't make any preparations for Princess Luna's arrival though? I'm positive the whole town would love to help."

Twilight shakes her head, "It's too late to start, and given the current situation it would probably be more of a distraction anyway."

Mayor gives a short nod, "In that case, I'll be off as well. Good luck tonight, Princess."

Once Mayor Mare has left, Twilight leans back, closing her eyes and taking a moment to relax, the silence of the already nearly empty town square a welcome respite after a supremely hectic day. Her ears prick as a faint buzzing invades the calm atmosphere. It quickly grows louder, until it's punctuated by a yell.

"Hey!"

"Sorry~!"

Spike glances over as he picks up the final notecard, "Hey Twilight, CMC incoming."

Twilight scrunches her eyes tighter, trying to stay in her calm place, It's just my imagination, it's just my imagination, it's just my imagination…

Ignoring her better judgment, Twilight allows one eyelid to partially rise, taking a peak in the direction of the approaching sound only to see Scootaloo bearing down upon her. Groaning internally, Twilight resigns herself to her impending fate, standing to face Scootaloo as the filly screeches to a halt in front of her.

"Twilight! We need your help!"

Twilight sighs, "Scootaloo, I don't know what you girls are currently crusading about, but I really don't have time to help you with it. Princess Luna will be arriving soon and I need to be present when she does."

Scootaloo meets Twilight's eyes, the filly's normally cheerful face set in an unusually grave expression, "This is way more important than saying 'hello' to Princess Luna."

"What do you mean?" Twilight asks, a dark foreboding feeling building in her chest.

"Well," Scootaloo begins, "me and the girls were going to try and get our cutie marks in vampony hunting-"

"You what?" Twilight demands.

"Yeah… uhh… yeah," Scootaloo replies, her gaze darting towards the ground. "Anyway, we went to the hospital and found a vampony in one of the bushes, and we attacked her."

The foreboding feeling in Twilight's chest intensifies at this, her heart pounding, Oh sweet, sweet Celestia please tell me they didn't… they wouldn't… I mean, they're just fillies…

"But it turns out that she's actually really nice and just wanted to see if her sister was ok, so we became friends. But it was bright out and she was scared after what had happened, and we said that you'd be able to help get her into the hospital since you're a princess."

"Oh thank Celestia," Twilight replies, relief rushing through her as she releases a breath she didn't realize she was holding.

Scootaloo blinks, "Huh?"

"I mean, of course I'll help," Twilight quickly amends. "What kind of princess would I be if I didn't?"

Scootaloo gestures at the empty wagon trailing her, "Awesome! Hop on!"

Twilight takes a seat in the wagon, then turns to her assistant, "Spike, are you coming?"

"Umm… mayyybe I should go back to the library instead? You know, in case Luna arrives before you get back?" Spike asks, nervously eying the rolling safety hazard that Twilight is sitting in.

Twilight smiles appreciatively, "That's a great idea. In that case, I'll see you when I get back."

With that, Scootaloo buzzes her wings, accelerating in the direction she had arrived from. Spike waves until they are out of sight, wiping some imaginary sweat from his forehead once they are no longer within view.

"Whew, that was a close one."

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