• Published 24th Sep 2012
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Sisterhooves Social, Princess Edition - Legal Brief



Princess Luna decides that the Sisterhooves Social is the perfect opportunity for sisterly bonding

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Chapter 2

Princess Luna, more than anypony else in the competition, appreciated the warm welcome she and her sister received for their presence. Last year’s Nightmare Night had been a whirlwind introduction to the town of Ponyville. Ponies had at first cowered at her presence and bowed out of fear rather than respect as they would have for her sister. With a generous dose of friendship from Twilight Sparkle and her friends, by the end of the night the lunar diarch had successfully won over the town, small foals included. So it was with great pleasure that she took in the thunderous applause and encouraging cheers, sparing a small wave to her number one admirer Pipsqueak in the stands.

The princesses had taken up position at the center of the starting line, Rarity and Applejack on each side. Truth be told, the two mares were a bit worried about going head to head with the alicorn duo. This was hardly the first time a couple of sisters who didn’t share the same age difference as Rarity and Sweetie Belle or the Apple sisters had entered, but this was the first time any alicorns had done so. Rarity and Applejack spared each other a somewhat concerned glance as the two royal sisters waved to the audience as the cheering slowly died down.

Rarity felt a hoof prod her flank and looked down to see Sweetie’s enthusiastic grin. “Ready, big sis? We’ll show the others who the best sisters are. I can’t wait to stick it to Applebloom.” Sweetie Bell gave the most enthusiastic roll of her eyes yet, somewhat at odds with the playful grin on her face. “Can you believe she thinks she can actually beat us Rarity?”

Rarity raised a hoof and gently stroked the luscious pink and purple curls of her sister’s mane. She gave a small smile as she reminisced upon what an adventure last year’s race had been. “I’ll certainly do my best, Sweetie dear. And Applejack has another thing coming if she thinks we’ll go down that easily.”

Rarity spared another glance at the royal sisters as they made themselves ready, removing their royal regalia and adjusting their bandanas. She let a tiny frown of worry touch her lips. “I’m more worried about the princesses, dear. They are a good deal...taller than we are, and I dare say that might make it hard for the two of us to keep up if we can’t trounce them in the other obstacles.” She gave another warm smile and reached over to embrace her sister. “Regardless, let’s do our best and have a good time Sweetie Belle. We’re here to have fun as sisters.” The alabaster unicorn reached over and gave a small boop to the filly’s nose. “Winning is just a bonus.”

Sweetie belle gave a small giggle at her sister’s antics, glad that whatever happened Rarity was there to see her smile. “Thanks sis, I know we’ll have fun.” The filly looked over the two alicorns and rubbed the back of her neck as she took in their form. “It’s just, uh, sis, have you ever seen Princess Celestia run?”

Rarity was about to answer with an immediate, “Of course Sweetie, why ponies run all the time,” when it hit her. Other than seeing Princess Celestia fly a few times, Rarity had never actually seen the graceful alicorn move any faster than a regal trott, form utterly radiating grace and poise when she moved.

“And besides Rarity, Princess Luna’s not that tall anyway. I bet she’s not that much faster than you if at all.” Sweetie took a moment to tap her chin as her face scrunched just the tiniest bit. “And didn’t we write an article for Gabby Gums about Princess Celestia stuffing herself with cake? Just because she’s thin doesn’t mean she’s fast, right sis?” Confident in her logic, Sweetie turned and gave a huge and innocent grin to her elder sibling, totally oblivious to how rude it would come across to call her princesses slow and unathletic.

Rarity’s eye popped wide open in shock, the only thing that kept her from yelling her sister’s name being the proximity of the princesses. She quickly tore her gaze from Sweetie Belle to see if either had heard the filly’s rather uncouth remarks. She thanked the stars that neither seemed to have taken notice, both quietly chatting amongst themselves.

Rarity took a few calming breaths. “Sweetie, dear, it is not becoming of a lady to insult other ponies, doubly so in their presence.” She leaned down to whisper rather forcefully in her little sister’s ear. “Especially when those ponies are the princesses of Equestria.”

Sweetie gave a small “hmph” before sitting on her haunches and crossing her forehooves. “But sis, it’s still true!”

As much as she wanted to argue the point with the filly, Rarity just couldn’t find anything untrue with what Sweetie Belle had said after a moment of pondering. She heaved a small sigh and gave her head a small shake of defeat, her shock and agitation at hearing her sister’s words finally fading as she realized she had nothing to say to the contrary. She gave a small and very ladylike titter into her hoof. “Wouldn’t it just be scandalous if Princess Celestia, ruler of Equestria, stuffed herself with cake when she thought nopony was looking,” she whispered, a small smirk breaking out.

“You say something, sis?” asked Sweetie Belle.

“Oh, no, nothing at all dear. Let’s just focus on the race now Sweetie. It’s just about time to start.”

Applejack took one last look over toward Rarity and Sweetie Belle as Granny Smith prepared to announce the start. “Good luck you two. Make sure ya have a good time and keep in mind it’s about havin’ fun while ya play, not who wins in tha end.”

“Yeah, you tell ‘em AJ,” shouted Applebloom. She gave a cocky smirk at Sweetie Belle. “But we’re still gonna kick yer flank Sweetie.”

Princess Celestia gave her sister a gentle nudge with her flank. “It’s show time Lulu. I hope you’re ready.”

Princess Luna gave a confident smirk. “We are always ready to engage in fun, dear sister.”

A harsh coughing sound echoed throughout the stadium as Granny Smith cleared her throat into the megaphone, once again rocking back and forth on her rocking chair on the podium. “On yer marks...Get set...Goooooo!” she shouted, trailing off as she somehow got her whole head stuck in the megaphone instead of just her eye this year.

The gathered racers all tensed their muscles and prepared to shoot off the starting line as the elder mare finished her countdown. A huge inhale was nearly drowned out as the first groups began shooting off the starting line.

HUZZAH! LET THE FUN BEGIN!

A tremendous blast of air exploded forth from Princess Luna’s muzzle as the Royal Canterlot Voice erupted forth. The wave of sound crashed into the other racegoers at almost point blank. An amethyst unicorn mare and a light purple unicorn filly that had burst ahead right at the start took the full brunt of the thunderous shout, being blown forward straight into the large mud pit. A second later and their heads popped out, the pair’s eyes now as wall-eyed as the local mailmare’s.

A pair of yellow earth ponies to Rarity and Sweetie Belle’s right fared slightly better, only stumbling and lightly tripping as the sudden, shocking volume washed over them. Only those two teams directly next to the princess of the night had heard her intake of breath and had the sense to realize what was coming. They had just enough time to hang back sufficiently to avoid anything worse than some ringing ear drums.

With the other racers either covered in mud, hauling themselves off the ground, or clearing their heads from Princess Luna’s outburst, the three center teams took the lead and tackled the mud pit. It was long enough that an athletic filly could just make it, and just short enough to lull an adult into a false sense of security and jump too weakly. The princesses approached it first, their tall stature and wings allowing them to easily clear the pit in a single bound.

They were followed closely by the Apple sisters, their farm work-hardened bodies easily strong enough to propel them over.

Trailing slightly behind Applebloom were Rarity and Sweetie Belle. Rarity, while no pushover, was not quite the athlete that Applejack was and had one rear hoof scrape the mud as she came in for a landing. She grit her teeth as she noted the blemish on her pristine coat but steeled her determination as she kept running. This was for her sister after all. Not even being entirely covered in mud would stop her.

As Luna looked back to see the competition, she thought she saw the white filly...inexplicably bounce across the surface of the mud as if it were a cloud and she a pegasus. She was sure she imagined that, as ponies did not float on mud...she thought.

The royal duo approached the second obstacle in a flash, a long row of barrel bottoms placed in a zigzagging pattern designed to make ponies stretch as they ran, increasing the risk of tripping. Enlarging their lead, the princesses easily cleared the barrel bottoms, their long legs making the distance an easy reach instead of the harsh stretch for ponies of smaller stature. Luna was already flush with the sense of victory as her and her sister kept the Apple siblings at bay. The now audible panting noise coming from her sister earned Princess Celestia a raised eyebrow and a small frown.

“I’m fine...sister...we’ve got...this,” said a slightly panting Celestia.

Applejack made quick work of the barrels, years of rodeo experience making her light on her hooves. Applebloom, second only to Twilight Sparkle in the four left hooves department, stumbled on the final barrel but managed to prevent a fall. She put on an extra burst of speed to catch up to Applejack who had forged ahead a smidge but held back from leaving her sister completely behind toward the crate jump.

Taking the opportunity to examine the competition, Princess Luna spared another glance back to see Sweetie Belle approaching the start of the barrels....before she somehow hopped perfectly through them...without slowing down at all. The midnight blue alicorn was almost sure she saw it that time.

Still out in front, the princesses soon approached the crate jump, a pyramid stack of three large shipping crates that the apple family used to send apples to faraway customers. The sisters easily cleared the crates, jumping over the entire thing in one giant leap. Applejack and Applebloom were still going strong with Rarity and Sweetie Belle pulling up a couple strides behind, having made up the distance during Applebloom’s stumble on the barrels. One after another they each leaped up onto the crates and back down as they raced to close the increasing lead of the two princesses.

The alicorn sisters quickly reached the pie eating station, a simple collection of picnic tables with a white cloth adorned with 20 pies. Wasting no time, Princess Celestia reached a hoof up, smacked the nearest tin, and in an impressive impersonation of a particular pink party pony gobbled up the entire pie in a single, gigantic bite before rubbing her stomach appreciatively. “Oh the pie is simply divine Lulu, we should pick some up for later.”

Not hearing anything, she looked over and saw her sister making a distasteful grimace at the lack of silverware on the table. Giving in, Princess Luna daintily reached her muzzle down and took a bite. A very small bite.

Celestia heaved a huge sigh. “Lulu, this is no time for exercising the royal table manners. Try to show a little less restraint with your eating habits and more for your vocal cords or we won’t be leading much longer.”

Princess Luna glanced at her sister while her muzzle was still firmly entrenched in her pie. She gave a prime example of the Royal Eye Roll before opening wide and stuffing the rest of her pie in her muzzle just as the second place contenders showed up.

The royal sisters sped away as Rarity, Sweetie Belle, Applejack and Applebloom positioned themselves in front of their pies, reached out and smacked the tins to launch the pies upward. All four ate their pies in one go, although one pair managed to do so in a slightly more ladylike manner, if stuffing an entire pie into one’s muzzle could ever be said to be ladylike.

Meanwhile, the royal alicorn sisters were ploughing forward with the hay bail push competition, their considerable strength as alicorns making short work of the task. Princess Luna gave a laugh of joy as she saw them widening their lead, their main competition still battling it out for second place. Princess Celestia saw the cocky smirk forming on her younger sister’s face. “It’s not...over yet...Lulu. Don’t...let your guard...down,” she panted out between breaths.

Grape juice making was up next. Ten huge tubs with piles of grapes in front and a glass jar below each tub’s spigot were arrayed in a straight line perpendicular to the track. Behind these, a matching set of ten stools were placed for the filled glass jars to be placed upon. Being the first to arrive, the princess made a straight line for the centermost. A light smile graced Princess Celestia’s lips as she remembered an old trick of her sister’s. As Princess Luna easily climbed up the barrel, Princess Celestia’s ethereal mane began to change shape and began to reach out toward the pile of grapes as she stood next to them. It slowly encircled the pile, and then it snaked over and gently deposited the whole lot before flowing back down and returning to it’s pristine shape.

“Sister, now is not the time to show off. We have a race to win,” said Princess Luna with mock severity, even if she did fail to hide the nostalgic smile on her face at the display of one of her older tricks. Just as Princess Celestia was putting the jar on the stool, AJ’s pair and Rarity’s pair were approaching the grapes.

Leaving the sound of squishing grapes behind, the royal sisters approached a set of ten benches with a pile of apples sitting atop each; a bucket to catch the apples was placed 25 feet further down the course from its paired bench. As with the grape juice, this event had specific roles for each sister to play. The younger had to catch the apples and the older get them to the younger. Luna ran past the crates and quickly set the basket on her head, the rather unprincess like action not lost on the crowd, a few sniggers mixing in with the constant cheering.

While no longer how she conducted herself every day, Princess Celestia still remembered what it was like when her sister had ruled a thousand years ago. She stopped in front of her bench and inhaled a giant breath and braced herself. “LULU, CATCH!” bellowed the princess of the sun in the Royal Canterlot Voice, the sheer power of her shout sending the apples, bench and all, rocketing toward the princess of the night’s head.

The bench started flagging as its broad surface caught the air and stopped just short of Princess Luna as the apples cleanly shot into the awaiting basket on her head, knocking it neatly off to rest on the ground. Princess Luna glared down the basket and directed the Royal Scowl right at her approaching sister. “Sister, dear, while it was impressive in it’s own right, we are not amused by your projectile bench, even if done from the Royal Canterlot Voice.” The ringing in her ears was a clear reminder that still today Princess Celestia was the undisputed master of the voice, even if she never used it.

More confident than ever, Princess Luna gave a confident grin to her sister as they leveled out with each other. The race was nearing its conclusion, only three more events remaining. Rarity and Applejack were still finishing up the grape juice station while the princesses approached the chicken coup. The two alicorns slowed to a brisk trot as they neared the entrance.

Princess Luna turned toward her sister and gave a wolfish grin. “This shall be a piece of cake, Tia.” She gave a playful roll of her eyes. “With all the parading you do I’m sure balancing a simple egg on your nose will be of no concern for the regal Princess Celestia.”

Celestia gave a small snort. “You know as well as I all the practice we did to get where we are today, sister dearest. If we fail today, it will not be because of an egg on my face.”

Princess Luna eyed the small doorway warily as she squeezed through it, her wings just brushing the sides. Right behind followed her slightly more plus sized elder sister. Until her flanks hit the door. Literally. Princess Celestia grunted as her flanks were squeezed by the doorway. She tried to squeeze herself inside a second time. And a third.

Princess Luna, focused intently on maintaining her royal poise and not dropping her egg, didn’t notice the absence of her fellow sovereign until she deposited her egg in the provided basket outside. She looked around and saw no sight of her sister. “Tia, where are you? Our competition is gaining.” A small frown blossomed on her face.

A grunt could be heard from the inside of the chicken coup. Princess Luna trotted over to investigate why her sister was making such noises in a coup full of eggs, surely none too heavy to lift. She walked up the ramp and into the doorway. And she stopped dead in her tracks. In the other doorway, head lowered in embarrassment and cheeks burning, Princess Celestia, supreme ruler of all of Equestria, bringer of the sun, and mare renowned for her poise and grace, was stuck in the doorway, her ample flanks squeezed between the door frame. “You’re kidding? You’re kidding, right?”

Celestia expelled a resigned sigh, mouth twisting into a thin line. “No, sister. Just, just help me out so we can keep going.” The alicorn of the night couldn’t fully repress her snigger at seeing her ever regal and graceful sister with her bum stuck in a doorway.

“Fine, Tia. But do not think the royal chefs won’t be hearing about your fat flank the next time we discuss the royal menu.”

It was a bemused foursome of ponies that stopped outside the entrance to the chicken coup, still blocked by the royal backside, shortly thereafter. “Uh, Rarity, is that what I think it is?” asked Sweetie Belle as she gave the royal tush a once over.

“I am afraid it is exactly what it looks like, if not somewhat...larger than expected,” offered Rarity, attempting to be tactful about the whole ordeal.

“So, uh, what do we do now AJ? I Aint never seen this happen before.”

“Only one thing to do, AB. We’re all gonna have ta go in tha other side and come out it as well.” Applejack gave a quick glance behind and saw the other competitors quickly closing the gap. “Might wanna make that double time, ya’ll. Looks like the others are gainin’ on us.”

Following the farm pony’s lead, the others quickly scampered after her and grabbed their eggs and carefully brought them to the awaiting basket.”

An increasingly frazzled pair of alicorns were still grunting and shoving in the chicken coup. “Tia, we are going to have a serious discussion about these cake eating rumons I keep hearing about as soon as we get back,” hissed a now peeved blue alicorn as she witnessed her lead vanish out the exit. With a final giant push, the two alicorns toppled back out the entranceway, a rather frazzled-looking Princess Luna resting atop a still embarrassed Princess Celestia.

They quickly righted themselves and took after the two mares and fillies who were rapidly approaching the hurdles section. “Come on Tia, we’re almost there,” said Princess Luna as she put on a burst of speed to catch up. Celestia, albeit somewhat more labored, followed suit, the princesses successfully closing the gap to a hoof full of lengths by the start of the first hurdles.

One hurdle down, then two. Another length closer to the younger mares who were neck and neck. Three hurdles down. Applejack and Applebloom pulled a pony length ahead of Rarity and Sweetie Belle. Another two hurdles down. The royal sisters were now neck and neck with Rarity and Sweetie Belle, now a length and a half separating them from Applejack and Applebloom. One more hurdle cleared. Princess Celestia and Princess Luna were now neck and neck with the Apple siblings.

The three front runners thundered toward the finish line, the alicorn sisters a head length separating them from the others just behind them.

“Come on...Sweetie, we’re...almost there. We can...do this,” panted a spent Rarity.

“We’ve got...this...big sis. I just know it!” shouted Applebloom as she gave her all, face clenched in steely determination.

“No cake for...an ENTIRE MONTH if you...don’t get your FAT FLANK in gear,” roared the princess of the night.

Princess Celestia’s pupils shrank to the size of pin pricks as she took in what her sister had just promised. The alicorn sisters put on a final, desperate burst of speed as they approached the new ending obstacle specially made for this year.

In front of the three pairs was the same hurtle from last year, but now a second, longer mud pit followed just a few strides after.

With a shout of, “FOR CAKE!” Princess Celestia leaped like she had never leaped before, sailing over the last hurdle with feet to spare. And landed straight in the middle of the mud pit, her last herculean effort just a little too strong. Lost in her intense desire to win, Princess Luna also gave a tremendous leap, overshooting the landing and plunging face first into the mud, her royal plot sticking up from the side it had landed on as her head became one with the mud.

Team Apple made a synchronized leap over the last hurdle, took a couple steps and once again leaped as they neared the mud pit. The loud cry of “Yeehaw” drowned out a much weaker “Woah” as the siblings made their final jump. Applejack started to sail right over the middle until something small and filly-shaped smacked her straight in the skull, dazing her. Applejack was left dazed just past the mud pit, a comatose filly lying on her upturned flank, stars in her eyes.

Sweetie Belle and Rarity were just trailing the Apple sisters. They had just enough time to see the head-on collision and wince before they needed to jump themselves. The distraction was just enough that they leaped a second too late and their hind hooves nicked the top of the hurtle, sending them spinning end over end into the mud pit, joining the royal sisters.

As the various casualties came to, a deafening cheering assaulted their ears. The three teams looked toward the finish line to see Amethyst Star and Dinky Doo, both covered in mud from the neck down being hoisted up and given three boisterous cheers. The first casualties of Princess Luna’s Royal Canterlot voice had made an amazing comeback, passing teams at each station, never giving up, and had taken the lead for the win when the three leading teams had somehow all failed on the last obstacle.

Those two had displayed what it meant to be true sisters: to trust in each other to do their best and to never give up, even when it looks like you don’t stand a chance.

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