• Published 28th Jun 2012
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A New Hero - Alex The Lone Wolf



What if there was another pony who joined the pony gang? (Look at longer description...)

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The Cutie Pox

Episode 32 – The Cutie Pox

I opened my eyes to a bright light slipping in through the window, causing me to place my hoof in front of my face to deflect it. I removed myself from the bed and walked to the bathroom. I turned the faucet and allowed the water to run through my hooves. I splashed some on my face to wake me up, drying with a towel after. I walked downstairs and prepared myself for the outside.

Once out the door, I was immediately greeted by a warm sunshine and a fresh breeze. I loved how the weather was in Ponyville most of the time. Just as I was about to make my way towards Fluttershy's cottage, I saw a triplet of fillies running through town with a round heavy object with each of them. After a moment, I realized that they were bowling balls.

As they began heading near me, I saw Applebloom rolling her red bowling ball instead of carrying it. Scootaloo had a saddlebag, but it was barely tied together due to the large size of the black bowling ball she was carrying. However, Sweetie Belle had hers in a more fashionable bag as she carried it with her teeth.

"Hey girls." I greeted, walking towards them as they stopped to see me.

"Hey, Alex!" They answered.

"Where are you all headed towards to?" I asked, continuing to notice the bowling balls they brought.

"We're going to find our cutie marks!" Scootaloo replied, proudly.

"In…bowling…?" I asked, concerned.

"Yep!" The three of them exclaimed.

"Are you sure…? Bowling is a little dangerous for girls your age. The ball is really heavy to use."

"Pssh." Scootaloo pushed away. "Nothing the Cutie Mark Crusaders can't handle!"

"Well…at least let me watch you three so I know you're safe."

"Sure! We'd want somepony we know to be with us when we get our cutie marks!" Applebloom accepted. I didn't care as long as I went with them. All I wanted was for them to be safe. "Hey, Alex, Do you want to bring your girlfriend with you?"

I smiled at her comment. "I would, but I don't want her to get hurt by any bowling balls."

Applebloom had led us to the bowling alley and looked back to her follow allies. "Today's the day, Cutie Mark Crusaders! I can just feel it! Today's the day we are all gonna get our cutie marks in... bowlin'!" She threw out her forelegs towards the building.

"Woohoo!" Scootaloo hopped in the air, even fluttering her small wings, despite the weight of the ball.

"Wooo!" Sweetie Belle exclaimed, but her voice was muffled with the bag in her mouth. She spit it out and cheered again. "I mean, yay!"

"Why, after today, we won't even be the Cutie Mark Crusaders anymore! We'll be the... the Three Strikes!" Applebloom shouted, hopping in the air.

"That makes us sound like we've struck out." Scootaloo commented, walking towards her.

"Mmm." Applebloom thought. "How 'bout the Pin Twins?"

"But there are three of us." Sweetie Belle corrected, narrowing her eyes towards Applebloom.

"Okay then... Um... the Bowling Dolls!"

"The Bowling Dolls! That's it!" Sweetie Belle agreed happily.

"Perfect!" Scootaloo offered, hopping again.

"All righty then! Let's bowl 'em over!"

We walked into the bowling alley to see other ponies bowling as well.

"Alex. Do you want to bowl with us too?" Applebloom asked as we walked over to the other side of the building which was much clearer.

"Sure, why not?" I responded.

The girls and I started at the second to the last alley. Sweetie Belle pulled out her blue bowling ball, which was the same kind as Applebloom's, except its color, and rolled it around in the floor with her hoof, presenting a determined smile. After, she focused her attention on the ball and aimed it. She pushed it onto the alley with her head and we watched as it gently rolled towards the middle. However, it curved onto the side lane before it touched the pins at all. Regardless, Sweetie Belle walked past us with a smirk on her face as if she had done a great job. Scootaloo, Applebloom, and I could only offer a slight forced smile to make her feel accomplished.

Scootaloo headed up the aisle next and placed her bowling ball in position. She turned the other way and looked below her, straight at the ball. I assumed it was her way of aiming it. Then, she pulled back her leg and kicked it forcefully. The ball shot towards the top of the aisle at an angle and flew straight towards me. I quickly threw myself towards the ground and looked back to see where the ball went. It actually ended up in the side lane and didn't touch any pins. Everypony in the building looked at Scootaloo, very shocked. She noticed this and nervously laughed, fleeing afterwards. Applebloom then grabbed her red ball with her mouth, after having some trouble first. She began walking towards the aisle, but she was struggling a bit with the weight of the ball. When she was at the point of falling to the ground, she spat out her ball towards the pins. I quickly caught her before she tripped. My eyes were drawn to the red ball as they quickly smashed through the pins, creating a striking sound. Everypony began cheering at the perfect strike.

"Cool! A bowling cutie mark!" One of the ponies exclaimed.

"I did it!" Applebloom yelled out excitedly. "I did it!" She quickly looked at her flank, but we all noticed that it was blank. "Blank?" We turned our attention to another pony that was wearing a black and white bowling shirt as she was fascinated with her mark, which presented a pin and a bowling ball. She walked off proudly as the other ponies continued to cheer for her. "But... but... what about my ball?"

Near the lane with the continuously spinning pin, another red ball was slowly rolling towards the pins in front of it. It came to a stop before the first pin, barely touching it. Applebloom immediately formed a frown as if she wanted to cry.

"Applebloom…" I stated, feeling her sadness and holding a hoof out to her, but she sadly began walking away. Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle began walking after her as I trailed behind them.

Somehow, Scootaloo had retrieved her scooter and helmet outside of the bowling alley. They caught up to Applebloom and strolled by her, seeming as if they were unaffected by the sadness that surrounded her.

"That bowling sure was fun, even if all I got was gutter balls." Sweetie Belle announced happily.

"Yeah!" Scootaloo encouraged as she rode her scooter by Applebloom's side. "At least you were able to keep your ball in your lane. I don't think Mr. Kingpin is ever gonna let me play again!" She quickly blasted off in her scooter and jumped over a rock. She halted as Sweetie Belle caught up to her. "Hey, maybe I could get my cutie mark in demolition!" Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo chuckled at the thought, but Applebloom strolled by without a word as she held her head down. "Aw, come on, Applebloom!"

"I know just what you need to put the bloom back on your apple." Sweetie Belle responded and dragged her over to Sugarcube Corner.

"A treat from Sugarcube Corner will cheer you up!" Sweetie Belle had slid a cupcake over to her gloomy and upset face.

"No it won't…" She sadly pushed the cupcake away.

I could only frown at the sight of her. She was just so…sad…and disappointed that she didn't get her cutie mark. I just wish I had something to tell her that would cheer her up…

"Come on. Let's go talk to Pinkie Pie! I'm sure she can help!" Sweetie Belle announced and the three of them walked off.

I sighed and closed my eyes, deciding to stay at the same place. Whenever I see a pony sad or disappointed… I always feel their same emotions as well…

"Hellooo!" I heard a familiar cheery voice besides me.

I turned my head to see Derpy. "Oh, hey Derpy." I replied, trying to sound better, but the tone of sadness still lingered in my voice.

She tilted her head and her ears flopped down, introducing a small frown as well. "Is something wrong?" She asked.

"Oh, um." I tried to think. "It's just a young friend of mine that is having some trouble finding her cutie mark. I feel really bad for her…"

Derpy remained silent for a moment and then lifted a hoof. "You know what will cheer both of you up? Muffins!"

"Derpy, I don't think—

She had forced a muffin into my mouth and shut me up. I chewed it and began feeling delight, as if my spirits were being raised. I swallowed and looked at Derpy in surprise. "That was great! Where did you get that?"

"Really? I made it myself!" She smiled and stood proudly.

"You made it? You must be amazing at baking muffins!"

She slightly blushed. "I don't know…"

"Do you think you can give my friend one of your muffins?" I asked.

"Sure!"

We walked upstairs towards Pinkie's room and noticed a party going on. We looked around, but we only spotted Pinkie Pie, who was dancing with Gummy to the music playing in the background.

"Pinkie?" I called.

"Hm?" She opened her eyes and noticed me. "Oh, hi Alex! Want to party with me?"

"No thanks. I can't right now. Have you seen Applebloom?"

"Yeah! She left a little while ago! Can you believe one of my parties didn't cheer her up? Sheesh!"

"She did? Did you see where she went?"

"Nope. Sorry."

"Alright…Thanks anyway, Pinkie."

Once we walked back downstairs, Derpy looked at me. "What are you going to do now?"

"I'm going to look for her… Derpy, do you think you can give me the muffin to go?"

"Sure!" She pulled out the muffin and a paper bag from the saddlebag she had on. She placed the muffin inside the back and held it out towards me. "Good luck!"

"Thanks, Derpy. I'll see you later." I grabbed the bag with my teeth and began heading outside.

"Bye!"

I walked through town, searching around for Applebloom. After a moment of a careful analysis, I noticed Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle heading my way.

"Scootaloo? Sweetie Belle?" I questioned, placing the bag down and being lightly concerned. "Where's Applebloom?"

Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle both looked at each other a bit worriedly. Scootaloo looked towards the ground and rubbed the back of her head while Sweetie Belle rubbed her hooves nervously. "Um…she…went into the…Everfree Forest…"

"What!" I exclaimed. I quickly picked up the bag with my teeth and ran straight towards the forest, not even giving the two fillies time to react or respond.

When I arrived, I quickly stopped before a high cliff. I looked at the ground and noticed a vine sticking out, which could easily trip unsuspecting ponies. I looked below the cliff and noticed the ground. I hope Applebloom didn't trip and hurt herself… I swiftly jumped and planted my feet on the slope, sliding until I reach the ground. I think Zecora's hut is near… maybe she's with Zecora?

I continued walking until I reached the hut. I walked towards the door and looked inside. I spotted Applebloom drinking something from the counter.

"Applebloom!" I called her.

She was largely startled and quickly turned around to see me. "Oh…Hi, Alex!"

"What are you doing here all by yourself? You know the Everfree Forest is dangerous." I asked as I walked towards her.

She lowered her head towards the ground. "I'm sorry, Alex…"

I sighed and shook my head. "Come on, let's get out of here." We walked out of the hut and headed towards home. "What were you drinking anyway?" I questioned.

"Oh! Um…" She sounded nervous. "I was just…uh…drinking something Zecora made me!"

"Made you? For what?"

"You see, I wandered off here and tripped over a vine. I ended up chipping my tooth but Zecora mixed something up to fix it!"

"But you're alright?"

"Yes…"

I sighed in relief. "Okay, good. Here." I gave her the bag with the muffin. "It's something a friend of mine made. It's really good. I was hoping it'd cheer you up."

Applebloom smiled and pulled out the muffin. "Thanks, Alex." She threw it up in the air and caught it with her mouth, chewing loudly. After she swallowed, her face grew brighter. "Wow! That was delicious!"

I smiled lightly. "I'm glad you're feeling better." Applebloom returned a smile, but she looked away as if she was worried about something. "Everything alright?"

"Uh…yeah! I'm okay!"

"Okay…" I responded with a hint of uneasiness.

When we returned back to town, we saw Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle at almost the same place I had left them.

"Applebloom! We're going to be late for school!" Scootaloo yelled.

"Oh, geez! I forgot! Sorry, Alex. I have to go." Applebloom told me.

"Don't worry about it. Go on ahead." I allowed.

She nodded and ran off along with her friends.

Finally, I began heading to see my love.

I knocked on her door when I arrived at her cottage. She opened it and immediately embraced me right after she saw me.

"Hey, Fluttershy." I smiled and kissed her.

"How are you?" She asked.

"I'm fine. May I come in?"

"Of course!" She led me inside. "How has your morning been?" She questioned as we both sat on the couch.

"Alright…except Applebloom has been worrying about her cutie mark again. She had wandered into the Everfree Forest but fortunately Zecora was there to help her. But…" I thought for a moment. "She was drinking something in Zecora's hut while she wasn't there, but she told me Zecora had made it for her when she chipped her tooth… Well anyway, I escorted her out of the forest safely and right now she's at school so… I'm glad she's not hurt."

"Oh my… I wish there was something we could do to get her mind off of her cutie mark. I certainly wouldn't want it to lead her to being harmed."

"I feel the same way…" I suddenly remembered something and smacked a hoof to my forehead. "Ugh."

"What? What is it?" Fluttershy asked, concerned.

"I have a friend who makes great muffins. I should have brought one for you…" I replied, frowning.

"Oh. It's alright."

"Hm…" I thought and stood up. "Come on. Maybe she's still at Sugarcube Corner. Her muffins are great. I really want you to try them."

Fluttershy smiled. "If you say so…"

I grabbed her hoof and helped her from the couch. I walked over to the cottage door and opened it, holding it for Fluttershy to pass through. Then, I followed her outside and walked her to Sugarcube Corner.

However, during on the path towards the sweet shop, we saw Applebloom with her classmates, along with Ms. Cheerilee. What Applebloom was doing really surprised us. She was twirling a circular object with her tail and spinning plates on her nose. Where did she learn that from? After, she threw the object from her tail as well as the spinning plates. The hoop flew straight upwards while the plates and sticks perfectly traveled through the hoop. Applebloom swiftly jumped in the air and caught the plates on her nose again, this time the plates begin on top of each other. The hoop came back down and continued moving on her right back leg.

Afterwards, Applebloom hopped on the hoop and began maneuvering on it as she spun the plates with both of her front hoofs. Then, she jumped and did a hoof-stand on the hoop while she spun the plates with her back legs. She hopped off and placed the spinning plates on the ground and continued to spin them while she twirled the hoop with her tail. Ponies continued to applaud and cheer for her as she made more tricks with the items.

They all looked towards a cloud where Rainbow Dash was napping on. Applebloom twirled her hoop a few more times and threw it at the cloud, cutting off the rest of the white puffiness and leaving only the shape of the hoop. Applebloom caught the hoop on her back and spun it insanely on her hoof while her classmates continued to gaze at the amazing ability of Applebloom.

Sweetie Belle had stopped near us, bringing Twilight and Rarity with her.

"Hey guys." Twilight greeted. "What's going on?"

"Look!" Sweetie Belle exclaimed, pointing at Applebloom's tricks.

Applebloom was spinning a plate on one hoof and maneuvering the hoop on another when she grabbed the hoop and threw it towards us. The hoop stopped in front of Twilight and spun in front of her mane. When it was returning back to Applebloom, we noticed how it had changed Twilight's mane to the exact style of Rarity's. Rarity saw this and instantly gleamed with joy. Twilight returned annoyed eyes as even Spike came along and looked at Twilight with heart-stricken eyes.

Pinkie Pie was walking joyfully by when Applebloom bounced on her hoop and caught up to her. Pinkie noticed this and tripped while Applebloom bounced over her and continued going. She passed by Applejack, Big Macintosh, and Granny Smith, who were also spectators. Applebloom jumped her hoop and placed it over her and Granny Smith's heads. They both smiled as she spun it around their neck. Applejack whistled and kicked the table near her which contained a freshly baked pie and several plates. Applebloom noticed them as they flew up in the air and quickly rushed over to catch them, all while she continued to twirl the hoop. She then bumped the pie towards the sky and used the hoop to cut the pie into equally served pieces and land on each of the plates. Pinkie Pie and some other ponies quickly headed towards the table that they landed on and slurped their tongues. Everypony continued to cheer loudly at her astonishing skills.

"Alright, alright…" Applebloom stated. "That's enough tricks for one day."

Everypony groaned and left the area.

Twilight, Rarity, Applejack, Fluttershy, and I walked towards Applebloom to find out what that was all about.

"Two cutie marks?" Twilight questioned. "I've never seen a pony have two cutie marks!"

"Hehe, yep." Applebloom replied.

"How is that possible…?" I asked, concerned.

"I guess I'm just lucky to have two talents." Applebloom said and slightly nervously laughed.

I slightly narrowed my eyes, wondering how there could be two cutie marks on her flank, especially talents that I'd never think she would have.

However, Applejack politely intervened. "Well, Applebloom, we should get you home. You must tired as a pickle from doing all those neat tricks!"

Applebloom quickly nodded and began walking with Applejack and the others back to Sweet Apple Acres. Hm…something is going on with Applebloom that she's not telling me about…

"I'm proud of her!" Twilight announced. "It's great that she finally earned not one, but two cutie marks! I mean… they weren't what I was expecting…but hey! We should be celebrating."

"We could… but night is going to fall soon. We wouldn't want to keep Applebloom up late." Rarity added.

"Mhm. You're right. I guess I'll see you later guys!" Twilight said and departed with Rarity.

I'll worry about that later… "Fluttershy, let's go see if my friend is still at Sugarcube Corner before it gets late, okay?"

"Okay."

We continued our way to the sweet shop.

"And, and, and, there were these plates spinning and, and, loop da hoop flying in the air, and all sorts of things!" A voice sounded excitedly as we walked inside the shop.

"That sounds amazing and fun! Who did you say that was doing all this again?"

"A filly named Applebloom!"

"That's cool!"

We saw two ponies at the counter, eating muffins and drinking chocolate milk. I noticed one of them was Derpy, but there was another pony that looked exactly like her but only smaller.

"Derpy?" I called.

She turned around and noticed me. "Hi, Alex!" She turned to the filly and spoke. "That's my friend, Alex!"

"Hi!" The young filly greeted me.

I walked up to them.

"This is my little sister, Dizzy Doo. Or you can call her Derpy Jr. or Baby Derpy, I don't know." Derpy explained.

"Oh, hey there Dizzy." I held out my hoof to her, which she politely shook. "Um Derpy, I was just wondering if you happened to have another muffin my girlfriend, Fluttershy, could have." I presented Fluttershy, who obviously seemed a little shy.

"Of course!" Derpy reached into her saddlebag and pulled out a muffin. "Here you go!" She presented the muffin in front of Fluttershy.

"Thank you…" Fluttershy said as she carefully took the muffin.

"You're welcome!" Derpy cheerfully exclaimed. "Well, Dizzy and I should start home. It's getting late, right Dizzy?"

"Right!"

Derpy smiled and began leading her little sister out of the sweet shop but stopped by me to whisper really quickly in my ear. "She's really pretty!" After, she continued walking and left as I could only smile at her message.

I looked at Fluttershy. "Come on. Let me take you home."

Fluttershy had eaten the muffin along the way. "That muffin was really good! Is that her special talent?"

"I don't know… She has bubbles for a cutie mark. I don't exactly know what that means yet…"I stopped at her door and smiled. "Well, Goodnight, Fluttershy."

"Goodnight, Alex. I'll see you tomorrow." She responded.

I nodded and embraced her, giving her a kiss. When I pulled away, she was blushing. She nodded and headed inside her cottage. I smiled as I began walking and headed towards home, which I then plopped on the bed and almost immediately fell asleep due to slight fatigue.

I spent some time in bed as the sun peeked in from beyond the window. After, I finally managed to sit up and remove myself from bed. I took a glance out the window and noticed something strange. I saw Applejack running towards Twilight's home while Applebloom was with her. Applebloom was furiously twirling the hoop and spinning the plates from yesterday. Not only that…but there was something new about her appearance. I could see she contained another cutie mark on her flank and she was rapidly tapping her hooves on the ground. I quickly rushed downstairs and out the door to see what the problem was.

I ran over to Twilight's home and opened the door to hear more furious taps to the ground and Applebloom contain a worried and panicking expression glued to her face.

"Three cutie marks. Three talents." Twilight analyzed. "I've never seen anything like it! I was just reading something about unusual equine illnesses. What was it?" Twilight began searching through the shelves of books as I walked towards Applejack.

"What's going on? What's up with Applebloom?" I asked.

"I don't know! She got one more cutie mark and now she can't stop doing neither!" Applejack replied worriedly.

"'Perplexing Pony Plagues', perhaps?" Spike said from the top of a ladder and hopped over to Twilight's back.

"Yes, Spike, you're amazing!" Twilight praised.

"Yes, well, I do have some talents." Spike placed the book on a nearby podium, which Twilight began reading through.

"Hay fever... the trots..." She gasped loudly. "Cutie pox!"

"Cutie pox?" Every other pony, including Spike, exclaimed out loud.

"Cutie pox. This puzzling pony plague afflicted a population of ponies back in the paleopony period!" Twilight exclaimed.

"Heh, say that ten times fast!" Spike joked, pointing his fingers toward the book.

Twilight returned narrowed eyes and bumped him off her back. "Random cutie marks appeared all over the ponies' bodies, causing them to perform all the talents that came with them!"

"Just like me!" Applebloom shouted as she continued to perform the actions of her cutie marks.

"Yes, but what's the cure? What's the cure?" Applejack asked in a demanding tone.

Twilight took another look at her book but opened her mouth in shock. "It says here there's no known cure!"

"No known cure?" The others exclaimed.

"The cause of the breakout was never discovered, and the cutie pox disappears as mysteriously as they arrived!"

"Oh no!" Applebloom expressed worriedly and suddenly received another cutie mark. "Sacrebleu ! Plus de marques de cutie!" She gasped. "Qu'est-ce c'est? Je parle français?"

Her different language surprised us all.

"My sister's speakin' in fancy!" Applejack exclaimed.

"She needs help!" Twilight announced.

"I know she needs help! We can't just wait for this to go away! We gotta find somepony to mix up a cure! And fast!"

"Tout de suite!"

"Not some pony... some zebra!" Twilight offered.

"Zecora!" Applejack realized. "C'mon! We need to go now!"

Twilight picked up Spike and we all exited and headed to Zecora's, galloping rapidly.

Outside, we continued running until we looked back and noticed Applebloom was trailing behind, struggling with her cutie marks.

"Hurry, hurry!" Applejack shouted.

"Dépêchez-vous!"

I quickly turned back and headed towards Applebloom. I picked her up and held her on my back. Her frantic tapping was hurting me but I had to take her to Zecora's as soon as possible. When I caught up with Twilight and Applejack, suddenly, another cutie mark appeared behind Applebloom's flank, revealing sculpture tools. She was forced off my back to retrieve the tools and instantly created a perfect statue in the middle of town. Then, she received another cutie mark and she was immediately on top of a roof, cleaning out a chimney. As expected, she helplessly endured another cutie mark to which she began playing an accordion, all while continuing to spin the plates and twirl the hoop, in front of other ponies. Another cutie mark appeared and soon she was whipping a lion as she held a stool in front of her. Yet another cutie mark was spotted, causing her to run to the park and be victorious against an elderly by playing chess. Right after, she was in front of us, as well as other ponies, fencing with another pony. Twilight and Applejack looked at each other worriedly as Spike was watching Applebloom's struggle while casually eating a bag of popcorn.

"She's cursed!" A pony with a lily in her mane exclaimed.

Applebloom was tightrope walking on some flags tied by a couple of poles.

"Hexed!" The pony from the rose shop added.

Applebloom was now sky flying.

"Enchanted!" A light pink pony finished.

"No, she's not." Spike assured from a stack of hay with narrowed eyes. The ponies sighed in relief. "She just has some weird mysterious disease with no known cure called—

I quickly interrupted and cut off his sentence by placing my hoof on his mouth. I looked at the other ponies. "It's nothing."

Spike removed my hoof and looked at me awkwardly. "What do you mean 'nothing'? She has cutie pox."

"Cutie pox?" Everypony screamed and instantly cowered back into their homes.

We were left by ourselves in a silent town as a roll of tumbleweed passed by us. I looked at Spike with an angry expression.

"What?" He asked, clueless.

"I thought I had removed their fear the last time that I visited here." We heard Zecora as she spoke to us. "But, doors are barred and shutters shut, guess I should've stayed inside my hut."

"Zecora!" Twilight shouted. "Apple Bloom has cutie pox!" She pointed to Applebloom who was too busy doing complex math on a chalkboard. "We were just on our way to see if you had a cure!"

"But magically you're here! Was your zebra sense a-tinglin'?" Applejack asked.

"My 'zebra sense' did not bring me round, it was a special flower that I needed found. I thought I picked enough to fix all the potions I had to mix, but after my visit from Applebloom, some had mysteriously left my room." Zecora walked forward to Applebloom. "Applebloom! What do you say? Did this flower just walk away?"

Applebloom looked at her worriedly as she lifted up weights. Another cutie mark appeared on her forehead. "I, um..." She was instantly forced to move to a nearby window and begin washing it with sponges and bucket of soap and water. Ponies inside the home noticed this and covered their faces with hazard masks.

"A cutie pox cure I have forsooth, for healing power is in the seeds of truth." Zecora pulled out some seeds from her bag.

"Well, well then give 'em to her! Quick!" Applejack quickly responded.

"These seeds must be planted in the ground. With the truth, they'll grow, and the cure is found." Zecora explained as she held up the seeds on her tail.

"Come again?" Applejack asked, confused.

"She means that the seeds have to grow into a flower, but only speaking the truth is its nourishment."

Zecora nodded and returned a scolding look towards Applebloom who was too busy struggling with her heavy weight and other movements.

"Well then let's get to it!" Applejack bumped the seeds from Zecora's tail and planted them in the ground. "Alright, they're planted, now somepony tell the truth!" Applejack shouted for the whole town to hear.

I noticed Pinkie Pie sitting outside in the sweet shop, looking very worried as she began sweating nervously.

Applebloom retrieved another cutie mark in a form a tornado. Thus, it led her to begin spinning like one around us. "Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa!"

"Somepony! Anypony!" Applejack helplessly cried.

Everypony around only stared, cowered, and did nothing. I turned my head back to Pinkie who was now nervously looking around. "Yesterday I told Mrs. Cake that I ate two corn cakes, but I really ate three!" Applejack and Twilight looked at the ground, but didn't notice any changes. They turned their attention back towards Pinkie Pie.

"I don't think that's how it—

"Okay six! I ate six corn cakes!" Pinkie Pie cut off my sentence by shouting panicky. Applejack and Twilight observed the ground in hopes again for it to grow, but it didn't.

After they looked back at Pinkie Pie in confusion and worriment, Pinkie Pie stood up from the ground and waved her hooves around, crying. "Make it stop! Oh, make it stop!"

"It's Applebloom! She needs to tell the truth!" I explained to the others.

"Wah, I can't stand it anymore!" Applebloom shouted as she continued spinning. "It's me! I admit it! I didn't earn my cutie mark! They're all fake!" Her spinning stopped as she plopped back on the floor, but her tapping resumed. Zecora released a grin as we looked at the ground for any changes. There was a twitch. "I figured the Heart's Desire would help me get what I wanted most! So when Zecora left her hut, I mixed up a special potion and put the rest of the Heart's Desire in it!" The planted seeds moved more, and then finally spurted out from the dirt and evolved into a magnificent flower, causing everypony to awe in amazement.

However, Applebloom quickly dove herself to the flower and ate it in one gulp. She sighed and fell to the floor, relieved. All of her cutie marks began disappearing from her body. She stood up and noticed the changes, smiling afterwards.

"Applebloom!" Sweetie Belle exclaimed nearby as she and Scootaloo ran towards her.

"Are you okay?" Scootaloo asked.

"I'm great, and I've never been happier to be a blank flank. But I'm awful sorry I lied, 'specially to you gals. I was so desperate for my cutie mark, I just got carried away." She apologized and walked up to Zecora. "And I'm really sorry I snuck those flowers from you, Zecora. I- I wouldn't blame you if you never wanted me to come by again."

"Now, Applebloom," Zecora lifted her head with her hoof. "…do not be silly. You are always welcome, my little filly. With each mistake you learn something new, growing up into a better you."

When we looked to see Zecora, she had mysteriously disappeared.

"Applebloom…" Twilight turned her attention to her. "Would you mind writing to Princess Celestia and telling her what you've learned?"

"I'd be happy to, Twilight!" Applebloom cheerfully accepted. "Spike?" She called.

Spike immediately ran to her side with a quill and letter in his hand. "Ready!"

"Dear Princess Celestia, waiting for what your heart desires can be really hard. So, you may try to take a shortcut. But this dishonesty never works, because you didn't earn what your heart desired. The only cure is being honest with yourself, and others. And that's something every heart desires." Applebloom presented as her friends smiled at her.

Spike took a deep breath and blew the scroll, sending it to the Princess.

"I sure am proud of you, sis." Applejack announced. "Seems like you finally learned the importance of patience."

"Yeah." I added. "You really don't want to rush things through. I promise you'll find that cutie mark when the time is right."

"Yup! All good things come to those who wait." Applebloom smiled. Just as I thought that she finally learned to become patient, she broke my hopes. "Well! I've waited long enough."

"Actually, that was way too long." Scootaloo agreed as they ran past us.

"What?" Applejack exclaimed in shock.

"So what are we gonna do today to earn our cutie marks?" Applebloom asked.

"Well, I was thinking, for a pony who's never mixed up a potion before, you sure stirred up something fierce." Scootaloo offered.

"Yeah! So what if your talent is potion making?" Sweetie Belle added.

"Oh my gosh, totally! Let's go talk to Zecora, now!" Applebloom realized and the three of them began running towards the forest.

"Yeah!"

"Woohoo!"

I sighed and shook my head…but at least they were okay…

"So…uh…" Applejack began awkwardly. "How about some pizza?"

"Sounds great." Twilight smiled and looked at me. "What about you, Alex?"

"Sure, I'll meet you two at the usual spot." I responded.

"Okay!" They both walked off.

I walked to Fluttershy's cottage and knocked on her door.

"Hi, Alex." She greeted when she opened it to see me.

"Hey, Fluttershy." I smiled lightly. "Sorry, I'm late… there was some…trouble…back in town, but it's all alright now."

"It wasn't too much trouble, was it?" Fluttershy asked, showing a little concern.

"Nope. Twilight and Applejack are getting the others for some pizza. Care to join us?"

"Definitely." She responded, smiling in soft excitement.

We walked happily back to meet with the others.

"Hey, you two!" They greeted as we walked towards the table they were at.

"Hey." I smiled as we sat down together.

"Boy, I'm glad that crazy day is over." Applejack commented.

"Crazy day? What?" Rainbow Dash questioned. "What happened?"

"You mean you didn't see or hear anything?"

"No. I was busy napping."

Applejack rolled her eyes. "Of course you were."

"Well, tell me what happened!"

Applejack sighed and explained everything that occured.

"Really? I missed all that? Wow! Somepony should have woken me up!" She began chuckling.

"Rainbow! That's my sister you're laughing at!" Applejack scolded.

Rainbow Dash continued laughing but once she saw the annoyed expression on Applejack's face, she immediately shut her mouth. "Oh…um… I mean… That must have been horrible…"

Applejack removed the scolding look and replaced it with a joyful one as she smiled proudly.

We took our order for the usual hay topping pizza. As we waited, everypony talked…well…except Twilight… I noticed as she remained silent as she looked towards the ground, gloomily. I tilted my head and looked at her. "Twilight, is everything alright?"

She lifted her head in surprise but regained herself. "Oh, um, yeah!" She formed a light smile. "Don't worry; I'm just thinking about some things…"

"Oh…Alright…"

Twilight didn't eat much when the pizza came. She still looked a little sad. I couldn't stop thinking about what it was that was bothering her so much.

"Well, I'm beat! See y'all tomorrow!" Applejack walked away from the table and everypony followed. Twilight left as well. I wanted to check up on her and see how she was doing, but I slightly felt that I would probably be bothering her. Besides, I have to take Fluttershy home…maybe I'll go check up on her after.

I walked Fluttershy through the starry sky until I reached her door.

"Is there anything else you need?" I asked.

She shook her head. "I'm okay."

I smiled and hugged her for a moment. "I'll see you tomorrow."

"Goodnight." She replied so soft and sweet like.

I kissed her and repeated it to her as well. She walked inside and I began heading over to Twilight's house.

I knocked on the door when I reached the location. There was a moment of silence for a moment until Twilight had finally opened it.

"Oh, hey Alex." She sniffled a bit. "Is something wrong?"

When I looked at her eyes, I noticed they were a bit watery. "Well…Actually, I've been wanting to know what's bothering you."

"Bothering me? Why would you think something's bothering me?"

"Well…you look like you've been crying."

She lowered her head. "Oh…"

"Do you need somepony to talk to?"

She looked around for a moment as she thought. "It's okay, honestly. It's nothing serious. It's just something that happens once in a while."

"Oh…"

"But I appreciate your concern for me. It really means a lot." Twilight managed to smile.

"Alright… Just remember I'm here if you need somepony to talk to." I assured.

"Don't worry, I will."

I nodded. "I'll see you later then. Goodnight, Twilight."

"Goodnight, Alex."

I waved and began heading home.

Before I walked upstairs, I drank a glass of water really quick since I was feeling a little thirsty. After I lay myself in bed, I began trying to think about what Twilight was crying about. I hope it really is nothing serious. I just wonder what it is. Hm… well I hope she's better tomorrow.

Before falling asleep...for some strange reason...a bad feeling struck me faintly when I thought about the reason...

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