Home Alone with Sweetiebelle.

by No One and Nobody

First published

When everypony is invited to the Crystal Empire for Hearthswarming eve, how long will it take for them to realize that they are missing a certain blankflank? Set pre-Crusaders of the Lost Mark.

We all know Sweetie Belle is incredibly clever, but how will she handle herself when everypony leaves her alone by accident?
And on top of that, add in two pony burglars who are bent on stealing Ponyville blind.
Unknowingly I wrote this story on the twenty-fifth anniversary (year) of the making of Home Alone. So happy anniversary!!
I really appreciate any constructive criticism. But please keep the comments clean.
Also, for all reading this on the month of it's publication, Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Joyous Kwanza, Season's Greetings, Happy New Year, Happy Hearth's warming and... Happy... Boxing Day... I guess.

Chapter 1

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Chapter 1: A Series of Unfortunate Events.

"The fire of friendship lives in our hearts as long as it burns we cannot drift apart..." Rarity sang, while mixing batter for lemon tarts.

Rarity's normally tidy and spotless kitchen (from lack of doing any laborious baking) was a mess of filthy bowls, trays soaking in warm water and containers of food.

"Wow Rarity," Spike said, entering the kitchen, "Something smells... delicious."

"Why thank you Spike," Rarity said, "I knew it was going to be a long trip to the Crystal Empire and I thought I should make something to eat on the way."

"But I thought Applejack was going to make the snacks."

"Yes well," Rarity said looking down in embarrassment and flipping her mane, "Applejack's food is delicious but her dishes are always so, shall we say... apple-y."

"Well I don't mind as long as I get to lick the spoon," Spike said, grabbing the wooden ladle.

"Well, what can I do for you?" Rarity asked, taking another spoon and dropping small, round balls of dough onto a metal sheet.

"Well I was wondering if you needed any help with your bags," Spike said, licking any traces of dough off his face.

"Why, isn't that sweet of you," Rarity said, passing Spike the other spoon for a thorough cleaning.

"Anything for you," Spike mumbled, blushing as he took the spoon from the pony of his dreams.

"What was that?"

"Uh... nothing. So do you have any luggage I can take to the train station?"

"Why yes," Rarity said, "There are a few bags in the hallway."

Spike put the second spoon in the sink and trotted happily to the hallway. His eyes bugged out and his jaw dropped when he saw the gigantic pile of luggage, stretching from floor to ceiling.

"'grumble' You shall not win," he muttered.

Shaking his head, he rolled up imaginary sleeves and hoisted up the monstrous pile of Rarity's belongings. He staggered out the door in the direction of the train station.

Rarity resumed singing and cooking.

"Hi Rarity," Applebloom said as she and Scootaloo entered the house, "We wer wond'rin if we could walk with Sweetiebelle ta the train station."

"Certainly girls," Rarity said, "She's in her room."

"Thanks," Scootaloo said, trotting upstairs with Applebloom at her side.

Rarity smiled and turned back to her baking.

"Hiya Sweetiebelle," Applebloom said, opening Sweetie's door.

Sweetiebelle's room was a mass of suitcases, clothes and other 'necessities to modern living' as Rarity would have put it.

"Oh hi girls," Sweetiebelle said, closing her suitcase, "What's up?"

"Oh, we wanted to walk to the train station with you," Scootaloo said, trying not to stare at the mountain of luggage Sweetiebelle was taking, "The train leaves at ten."

"Well thanks girls," Sweetie said, "But I wanted to walk with Rarity, plus, I'm not quite finished packing."

"Okay," Applebloom said, "We'll see you at the station."

"How do you think she could possibly pack any more junk?" Scootaloo whispered.

Applebloom shrugged.

"We are the Cutie Mark Crusaders..."

Sweetiebelle's singing faded away as Scootaloo and Applebloom trotted back downstairs.

"We're leaving," Scootaloo said, "We'll see you at the train station Rarity."

"Oh Sweetiebelle," Rarity called, but the Crusaders had already left.

Rarity shook her head and rolled her eyes as she placed the last tray of scrumptious goodies on a cooling rack.

"Hiya Rarity," Applejack said, waltzing through the doorway, "Are ya'll ready for this here big trip? I can't wait to see Cadence and Shinin' Armor."

"Oh, Applejack!" Rarity said, smiling guiltily, "Um, yes I'm all ready for, uh, THE trip, yes."

"Are you alright there Sugarcube?"

Applejack looked around at the piles of baked goods.

"All these treats don't have somethin' ta do with your behavior do they?"

"Oh, um." Rarity stammered.

Applejack hugged her.

"I appreciate the thought of helpin' me out with all the bakin'. But ya should'a told me. I already have all the food cooked. Why, ya know what? We can save all this and have a nice, fancy banquet when we come back. I wouldn't insist but ya know that apples are supposed to be good food for travelin'? Why that there Trenderhoof swears by 'em."

"Trenderhoof." Rarity asked, her eye twitching, "Swears by... Apples?"

"Why yessire," Applejack continued, "That's why I always pack a nice bushel of apples for these long train rides."

"Yes," Rarity said, fighting back the gag reflex of having nothing but apples for the journey, "How... Nice."

"Well I'll be seeing ya," Applejack said, heading for the door, "Thanks again fer thinkin' of me."

"Yes," Rarity said, her eye still twitching, "You're welcome."

Then, turning to her hard-won efforts she cried,

"All this work for nothing?! I chipped a hoof baking all this!!"

Removing her designer apron, she marched upstairs to wash her mane and get dressed, grumbling all the way.

"Oh drat," Sweetiebelle said, frantically searching her room, "Where did I put Rarity's present?"

She opened suitcase after suitcase to make sure she hadn't already packed it. She overturned a couple of piles of luggage in this process.

After a short search, she decided to retrace her steps in her mind.

Sweetie thought for a moment before her eyes lit up and she exclaimed,

"Of course, I hid it in the attic!"

She ran upstairs and began searching for the gift in all the clutter.

"Nothing but apples," Rarity muttered, walking down the hallway.

"Sweetiebelle," Rarity said, poking her head in her sister's room, "Oh of course, she went with her friends."

Rarity's face fell when she saw the pile of suitcases in the middle of the bedroom.

"Oh Sweetiebelle," she murmured through clenched teeth, "Why can't you remember to bring your things?"

A light blue aura appeared around the luggage as Rarity dragged it outside to the train station.

THUNK! went the slamming of the the door followed shortly by a CLICK! of the lock.

Sweetiebelle skipped happily down the stairs with Rarity's gift on her back.

"Rarity!" she yelled, "I'm almost ready!"

Her face fell as she entered her room.


Chapter 2

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Chapter 2: Rarity's Realization and the Introduction of Two Thieves.

"Alright Marv," said Harry pointing a hoof at Carousel Boutique, "That's one of the houses we're gonna rob."

Marv scratched his head, "Why this house in particular? What's wrong with the mayor's house?"

Harry clonked Marv on the noggin.

"You knucklehead! This house belongs to Rarity, the Element of Generosity! Do you realize how famous we'd be if we pull this job off?"

Marv thought for a moment.

"Very," he said, with a silly grin on his face.

Harry sighed.

"Marv, you have an amazing talent of understatement."

Marv smiled.

"Thanks Harry."

"Well first, we'll loot this place. Then we'll move to Fluttershy's cabin, then the Apple Family Farm, then Sugarcube Corner and then the castle."

"And then," Marv said with a stupid grin, "Rainbow's place, right?"

"Marv?" Harry said, grabbing Marv's ear, "We're both earth ponies."

"Oh yeah," Marv said.

"So we will wait till tonight to spring our plan."

"Oh Applejack!" hollered Rarity as she jumped onto the train as it departed from Ponyville station. The train slowly accelerated away from home, "Have you seen the Cutie Mark Crusaders?"

"Rarity," Applejack said, "I'm glad you made it. I think they're in the snack car with Granny Smith and Big Mac. Speakin' a snacks, have a apple fritter!"

AJ shoved the pastry into Rarity's mouth.

"HNG! HMMFF!" Rarity exclaimed to no avail.

"Can't hear ya Sugarcube."

"Why it's so simple Applejack," Pinkie interrupted.

She shoved an apple tart into her mouth.

"See wans to know phwere Sphweetiebelle is. Cauphe see's mad at hew."

Applejack wiped crumbs off of her face, mane and hat and said, "But the CMC said that Sweetiebelle wanted to walk here with you."

She pointed a hoof at Rarity, who swallowed with much difficulty before screeching,


Rarity dashed to the window but it was too late. The train had gained enough speed that jumping would've been suicidal. Rarity stared as home, and her sister, faded away into the distance.

"NON-STOP TO THE CRYSTAL EMPIRE!" came the conductor's voice loud and clear.

"We have to stop the train!" AJ yelled as she and Rarity made a mad dash for the engine.

"BUT YOUWLL MITH DE TWEATS!!!" screamed Pinkie, holding aloft a forgotten apple pie.

Sweetiebelle surveyed her surroundings. She had figured out that Rarity must have left her by accident based on the evidence that all her suitcases were gone.

Rarity must have thought I left with the girls.

"Alright," said Sweetiebelle, sitting herself down at the kitchen table, "This isn't so bad. Rarity forgot all the food she was baking so I'll have plenty to eat. I can get along by myself. First things first, I wanna decorate for Rarity when she gets back; and part of decorating is cleaning up any messes. So I'll go into town and buy some cleaning supplies and decorations... And a toothbrush, since I packed mine."

Sweetiebelle feasted on a lemon tart and then headed out the door.

"Silent night, Luna's night, all is calm, the stars are bright," Sweetiebelle sang, walking down Manestreet.

"What can I get you," asked a sales clerk to Sweetiebelle.

"A broom, some dish cloths, soap, streamers, balloons, poinsettias, oh and a toothbrush."

"Right," said the pony, not daring to ask the young filly why she needed such a strange array of items.

Turning to the two stallions behind Sweetiebelle, she asked, "Is she with you two?"

"No," said Harry, "We're actually here for some... uh... equipment."

"What kind of 'equipment'?" asked the clerk.

"Grappling hooks, glass cutters, gloves, sacks, maybe a stick of dynamite or two," said Marv, "Oh and a diet soda."

The clerk rolled her eyes.

What a bunch of weird stuff to be needing. thought Sweetiebelle, staring at the shifty-looking ponies.

Sweetiebelle inspected their cutie marks.

Nothing to do with rock-climbing, she thought, Maybe construction, or demolition? They actually look like cutie marks in... Hmmmmm.

For there on their respective flanks was a stick of TNT and a set of blueprints.

Sweetiebelle gave the clerk the money and thanked her. Then she took the supplies and trotted away.

The clerk handed Harry and Marv the items they had asked for. They payed promptly and left.

"I've never seen them around Ponyville before," Sweetiebelle murmured as she watched the ponies leave, "As Pinkie would say, 'Time to find out everything about them and make some new friends!'."

A slow smile crept across her muzzle.

This could be very fun.

Very fun indeed.

"YOU!" screamed Rarity as she and Applejack burst into the train engine, "You have to stop this train and turn it around!"

The conductor looked up from his work for a moment, with a look of boredom.

"No can do ladies," said the stallion, shoveling another pile of coal into the furnace, "I'm on strict orders to get this train to the Crystal Empire ASAP."

"But there's a filly left home alone," Applejack implored, "We've got to get back and help her. She can't take care of herself."

"Well then-"

"Excuse me?" Rarity snapped, jerking her head to look over at her friend, "Are you implying that MY sister cannot handle herself?"

"Uh," Applejack said, backing up slightly, "No- Yes- That's not the way I meant it."

"Then how did you mean it?"

"I meant that, (gee is mah face red) (is it hot in here or is that just me?)"

"Speak up."

"I-i-i-it's just that well... if it had been Applebloom,"

"MY SISTER IS PERFECTLY CAPABLE OF WATCHING HERSELF FOR SEVERAL DAYS!!!!!!!!!!!!!" Rarity screamed, "More so even than Applebloom. Sweetiebelle never wandered off into the fire swamp alone!"

"But Applebloom learned her lesson!" Applejack countered, "And I just felt that Sweetiebelle hasn't had as much experience as Applebloom takin' care of herself."

"SHE DOESN'T NEED EXPERIENCE!!!!!" hollered Rarity, "She does things right the first time."

Rarity advanced towards Applejack, who held her a hooves-length away.

"Rarity," Applejack said, dodging Rarity's ineffective punches, "I don't wanna fight with you. So I'm sorry for what I said 'bout Sweetiebelle. I reckon she could handle herself for a couple a days."

"Well then, I'll get back to shoveling," said the conductor, doing just that.

"But that's not-" started Rarity.

"See why I said what I said," Applejack whispered to her as she dragged her out.

Applejack hauled Rarity through two train cars before she stopped trying to get back and kill the conductor.

"What happened to you two?" asked Twilight when they got back to their car.

"Sweetiebelle's been left home alone," said Applejack, putting a hoof on Rarity's shoulder, comforting her.

"Did you try to turn the train around?" asked Fluttershy.

"The conductor wouldn't listen," said Rarity, refusing to admit her mistake.

"Aw that's no sweat," said Rainbow, "I'll just zip back to Ponyville and we'll meet ya on the next train."

"This is the last train til Hearthswarming eve tomorrow," said Twilight.

"Then I'll get us a hot air balloon."

"Oh thank you Rainbow Dash," shrieked Rarity, catching Rainbow in a death hug, "You don't know how much this means to me. If there's any possible way that I can-"

"Yeah, yeah," said Rainbow, prying Rarity away from her, "Forget it. I'd do it for anypony. I'll be back in a dash."

Rainbow snickered.

"Or maybe even a RAINBOW DASH! Bwa-ha-ha-ha!"

Rainbow propelled out of the window.

Rarity sighed and sat back. Pinkie and Spike shoved more apple danishes into their mouths much to AJ's delight. Twilight turned back to her book and cup of tea. Fluttershy looked out the window and worried for Rainbow Dash.

"I hope she makes it through that big, dark, scary cloud bank alright," she said in a whisper.

The rest of the ponies started at the sound of a slamming door.

Rainbow Dash sat huddled by the door shivering.

"That was fast," said Spike.

"Your back already?" Applejack asked.

"I think she got caught in the storm," said Fluttershy.

She was unheard over the flurry of questions.

"Where's Sweetiebelle?" Rarity demanded.

"I don't think she's been back to Ponyville yet," Fluttershy tried again, with equal success.

"Uh, girls," interjected Twilight, having finally have looked out her window, "Something tells me Rainbow didn't get very far."

Fluttershy rolled her eyes as all the other ponies looked out windows.

"That is a nasty-looking storm," said AJ.

"Thanks Captain Obvious," said Rainbow, standing after having regained her composure, "That cloud bank is like nothing I've ever seen. I tried flying over it and I couldn't. I don't think it came from Cloudsdale."

"Where could it be from then?" asked Twilight, "I thought all major storm production was done in Cloudsdale with it being the biggest pegasus city out there."

"I've heard stories about storms from the Everfree forest from time to time," Rainbow said, "Apparently they occur naturally, or as naturally a storm can in such an unnatural place. These storms can't be cleared up by pegasi. Usually they just let them run their course. I haven't heard of a really big one since the days before I was even born. They usually clear up in a week or two though."

"BUT MY SISTER'S ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THAT STORM!!!!!" screamed Rarity, collapsing into Spike's claws.

"I can try my magic on it," Twilight said.

She stuck her head out the window and fired a bolt of shimmery, magenta magic at the clouds.

The clouds ricocheted the magic off them and back at the train. It just barely missed the train itself, landing harmlessly in the snow. A dark, scorch mark was left behind.

"That didn't work," said Spike, helping Rarity onto a chair, "Why?"

"I suppose that it's these clouds," pondered Twilight, "They're probably made with the magic that's ever present in the Everfree. I haven't studied that forest enough to understand it's magic, or, how to beat these clouds. The only pony I know who would be able to do that would be..."

"Zecora," interrupted Applejack, "But she's on the other side of that wall, like Sweetiebelle."

Rarity started to cry.

"I think the best course of action would be to get to the Crystal Empire and get Cadence's and Shining Armor's help," concluded Twilight, "I think Sweetiebelle will be fine until then."

She put a hoof on Rarity's shoulder.

"Don't worry, we'll get her back."

"WONDERBOLTS!!!!" screamed Pinkie Pie.

"Where?" asked Rainbow, her head turning back and forth.

"What are ya talkin' 'bout Pinkie?" asked AJ.

"Captain Obvious!" Pinkie exclaimed, "I was trying to remember where I'd heard his name before and then I remembered! He was the captain of the eight division of the Wonderbolts in the year six thirty-two. He worked with Commander Easyglider."

"How do you know this?" Rainbow said, tilting her head to the side in confusion.

"I didn't tell you?" Pinkie asked, "I wrote three more verses to my rap about the Wonderbolts after you passed that test."

The ponies stared at Pinkie.

"What?!?!" she asked.

Chapter 3

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Chapter 3: Sweetie Devises a Plan (And Rarity worries about her poor, sweet, defenseless little sister).

"Okay," said Harry, drawing a rudimentary sketch in the dirt, "This is the layout of Rarity's boutique based on the plans I saw at town hall."

His ears twitched as Marv slurped up the last of his soda.

"Anyway..." he continued, ripping the cup from Marv's mouth, "You will enter through the window and sneak round to the front and open the door for me..."

A small white figure crept down the side alley and hid behind a dumpster to listen to their conversation.

GASSSPP! thought Sweetiebelle, They're planning to commit a burglary. And what's worse, they want to burgle MY HOME!

Sweetiebelle's brow furrowed.

Burgle? Burglarize? Burgalaroid? Which one is it?

"Hey Harry," asked Marv, "What do we do if they get home?"

"That's the beauty of it Marv," Harry said, smiling, "They can't come back til that storm clears up. I knew bribing that native medicine-deer would help us."

Sweetiebelle gasped.

"What was that?" said Harry, jerking his head up from their plan.

"Aw it's just your imagination," said Marv.

Sweetiebelle slunk away as fast as she possibly could, being careful not to disturb so much as a stone.

Once out of the alley, she made a mad dash for the boutique.

She ran in and slammed the door shut behind her.

"Be calm," she reassured herself, pacing in the kitchen, "You can do this."

She looked up with steel in her eyes and said,

"This is my home and I'm gonna defend it."

"I see," Cadence said, after having heard the entire story from Twilight, "Well I'm not that sure if there's that much we can do."

"My poor, sweet, defenseless, little sister!" Rarity sobbed, "I don't know what I'll do if-"

"I didn't say there isn't anything we could do," Cadence interrupted, "I can send the mayor a letter to inform her that Sweetiebelle needs a guardian."

"How can you send a letter through that storm?" Twilight queried.

"I was thinking I could borrow your dragon."

"At you service milady," Spike said, bowing low.

"Thank you," said Cadence.

She levitated a parchment and quill off the table beside her and began to write.

Dear Mayor Mare,

A strange series of events have left Sweetiebelle, (Rarity's little sister) home alone.

I would greatly appreciate if you could send somepony over to Rarity's boutique to look after her and keep her safe.

Rarity and her friends will return home on the next train.


Princess Mi Amore Cadenza (A.K.A. Cadence) XXXOOO

"XXXOOO?" Twilight asked.

"I'm the Princess of love Twily," Cadence said, "How do you expect me to sign my letters?"

Spike rolled the letter up and sent it in a tongue of fire to Ponyville's mayor.

Everypony waited with baited breath.

After a few moments, Spike belched a letter out.

"Ahem," said Twilight.

Dear Princese Cadenc,

I'm sure the mayoor would have no problem with that.

I will give her this letter as son as she returns from her Hearthswarming shoping.


The Mayer's Assistant.

Twilight's eye twitched slightly as she put the letter down.

"How could she misspell Mayor? Twice?"

"That letter's riddled with more misspellin's then a convention a filly school dropouts," AJ said, examining the letter.

"And YOU would know so much about this because?" Rainbow said, snarkily.

"Well it doesn't matter how bad her spelling is," said Cadence, "As long as the mayor gets the letter."

"I thought that Proper Grammer had great spelling," Fluttershy said.

"Proper took two weeks off to go spend in Manehattan with her mother," Twilight said, "I signed her papers approving it. Mayor Mare must have got a substitute secretary."

"Thirty-six bottles of cider on the wall, thirty-six bottles of cider! Take one down, pass it around ya got... uh... T-t-twenty bottles of cider on the walllllllllllll..."

The long note was cut short as the Mayor entered the room.

"Berry Punch!" she exclaimed, "I thought I told you, no eggnog on office hours!"

"Jusssst a nip, Mayor doll, ta ward offffffff... da cold."

"This building is magically heated!"

"How'm'I ssssupppposssed ta know that when I've been drinkin'?"

The mayor rolled her eyes.

"Any messages while I was out?" she asked, putting a hoof on her forehead.

"Oh a massage? Dat soundssss lovely!! I'lllll make da reservations at da spa!"

"ANY MESSAGES!!!!" the Mayor yelled in Berry Punch's beet red face, "M-E-S-S-A-G-E-S!!!"

"Dat is correct," Berry Punch said, sloppily clapping her hooves together, "You, (and your twin sister), may proceed to da next level of da spellin' bee!"

"Berry Punch!" screamed the Mayor, "Pack your things! You're FIRED! Go home and sober up!"

"I'm hired? But you already hired me a week ago."

"And it was the biggest mistake I ever made."

"Oh you missed your stake! Why didn't you tell me? We'll find that piece'a wood if it's da last's'thing we do!"

Mayor Mare grabbed Berry Punch by the scruff of the neck and tossed her out the door.

"Why did I ever hire her?" she asked, trotting into her private office, completely overlooking the letter with the gold-embossed symbol of the Crystal Empire that was currently stained by eggnog.

Sweetiebelle surveyed her surroundings.

"What do I have that can keep them away?"

Her eyes scanned the room.

Pots and pans, no. Drapes, no.

Aha! Sweetiebelle thought as her eyes fell on a dress Rarity had been working on.

Not so much the dress as what it was on.

Sweetie smiled.

Harry and Marv crept through the shadows and approached Rarity's boutique. As they looked around a corner they saw something peculiar.

The lights were on in the house and there were ponies moving around inside.

"I thought they were in the Crystal Empire," said Marv, "Who are these ponies?"

"I don't know," said Harry, "Maybe I got their travel dates mixed up. Or maybe there are some ponies taking care of their house for them."

"Then let's go to the next home on your list. Applejack's farm, wasn't it?"

"Nah, I didn't look for those plans. The best course of action would be to just wait. Sooner or later, these ponies have to leave or fall asleep."

Sweetiebelle sat at a table and observed her work.

Pony mannequins moved all over the room, pulled by ropes and machines. Sweetiebelle had realized that they would cast realistic pony silhouettes of the translucent drapes.

Sweetiebelle was actually sitting at the table because it was the only place she wouldn't trip over things.

Sweetie's ear twitched as she overheard mumbling outside.

Dashing over to a window, she listened. It was the ponies from before alright.

Applejack's farm? I may be jumping to conclusions but it sounds like they're planning to rob everypony that left for the Crystal Empire!

Sweetiebelle swallowed hard.

This had just gotten a lot harder.

"How am I gonna protect everypony's homes?" she voiced aloud, "Rarity doesn't have THAT many mannequins!"

A slow smile crept across her muzzle.

If I can't keep them away, she thought, Then I'll just have to booby-trap everypony's homes.

Sweetiebelle grabbed hold of some crayons, paper and food.

This may take awhile.

Chapter 4

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Chapter 4: The Second Attempt.

"You got the plans?" asked Marv.

"Yeah," said Harry, "It was so easy it should've been illegal."

"I think it is Harry," informed Marv, "Posing as a surveyor and sneaking peeks at floor plans."

"Thanks for the PSA Marv. Now, do you have all the stuff we need?"

"Yeah, I got it cheap too, I love these small town deals."

"You can deal-hunt on your own time Marv," said Harry, clonking him on the noggin, "Now, you have to break the window and get in. I can't squeeze through windows."

Harry and Marv looked at Sugarcube Corner. The windows weren't small, but Harry's girth was a problem.

"You sneak around and open the door for me."

"What do you want me to do it I get glass in my hooves?"

"Suck it up Marv!"

"That doesn't sound so healthy," said Marv, putting a hoof on his throat.

"Get going!" Harry said shoving Marv towards the window.

Marv walked over towards the house. When he hit the sidewalk he stepped onto a sheet of black ice and went careening into the side of Sugarcube Corner.

"AAA-" started to scream Marv before he noticed Harry draw a hoof across his throat signifying silence.

Sucking in a deep breath, Marv tried standing up but his legs flailed out in all directions and he slid around of the ice like a clumsy skater.

Marv gritted his teeth and grabbed hold of a lamppost next to him and hoisted himself up.

He made his way along by grabbing hold of bushes, rails, whatever he could find, till he made it to the window.

Somepony really needs to salt these sidewalks, thought Marv as he hesitantly tapped the window.

The window swung inwards.

Marv sighed.

This was the first piece of luck so far.

"Hey Harry!" he yelled, "They didn't lock the window!"

"Shhhh," said Harry, making threatening gestures at Marv, "You want to wake up the neighborhood?"

"But don't the Cakes live here too?" Marv asked.

"They are in Hoofany. Now go!"

Marv skipped to the window and hopped in.

Much to his surprise, he crash-landed onto the floor, which was covered in broken Hearthswarming ornaments.

"AHHHHHH!!!!" he screamed, leaping out the window.

"What's the matter no-" asked Harry as Marv barreled into him, sending them both careening into a garbage can.

"Marv..." said Harry, surfacing and glaring at his sidekick.

"But... there was broken... and I... Oh I don't want to go in there!"

Marv collapsed again at Harry's hooves, bawling.

"Shhhhhhh," scolded Harry, "Do you really want to wake the whole neighborhood?"

Marv kept sobbing but turned down the volume.

Harry rolled his eyes.

"If ya want somethin done..."

He marched over to the door and examined it.

It was a simple enough lock and he was sure he could break it.

Upon further inspection though, he found it wouldn't be necessary as the door, like the window, was unlocked.

Really? Harry thought as he stood at the door, Could they be that dumb? I mean, forgetting the window is one thing, but the front door?

Harry smiled.

Don't question good fortune, they probably left it open cause this is small town Equestria. Everypony knows everpony. Or maybe that hyper, pink one just forgot, she didn't seem so bright.

He placed his hoof on the doorknob and screamed.


The doorknob was being heated by some unknown source.

As Harry pulled his hoof off the doorknob, he inspected it. The thick and usually strong hoof has red, blistering and in pain.

"Razafrazafopicktickhrggsnrgg," Harry said collapsing onto the ground and shoving his hoof into the snowbank beside him.

Sweet relief flowed through Harry's hoof.

Ripping his overcoat off, Harry used it oven-mitt style to open the door. He stuck his head in and looked around.

What the....

The whole house looked like the insides of a clock. Wires ran this way and that, hooked up to machines and pulleys.

What could this possibly be for? thought Harry as a strange odor hit his nose.


Harry's eyes bugged out when he realized that he smelled smoke, and that his head was strangely warm.


He jerked his head out of the doorway and stuck his head into the snowbank. A plume of steam shot out of said snowbank.

After a few moments of quiet cursing, Harry pulled his head out of the snowbank and examined himself and his clothes.

His coat was crisped up from the heat of the doorknob, his hat had a hole burnt clean through and Harry suspected his mane had been singed.

Looking carefully around the door again, not sticking his head through, he saw a phoenix on a shelf with a wire tied to it's tail.

Harry didn't know a lot about magical creatures (he hadn't studied much in school) but he did recall reading how phoenixes didn't like to have their tails pulled and they were likely to scorch anypony who did do so.

"Razafrazarazafraza," grumbled Harry under his breath as he returned to Marv.

"Not so easy, is it?" Marv asked with a stupid grin.

"Either that pink pony is weirder than I thought, or somepony planned this," said Harry, "You should see the inside Marv, it's so crazy it looks like it was designed by Saddledor Dahli."

"I did see in," said Marv, "for about half a second anyway. I think I saw a white unicorn who must've planned this whole thing."

"I white unicorn eh?" asked Harry, "was she a filly or a mare?"


"That must be Sweetiebelle, Rarity's younger sister. I'd heard she was clever, but not this much."

"I thought it was a dream for a while," said Marv, floating away from reality, "Because Harry, believe it or not, she looked exactly like the filly who was in front of us in line the other day."

"That's right!" exclaimed Harry, "I remember! Well now we know what we're up against. How much trouble can one filly cause?"

"I don't know."

"She can't," said Harry, rubbing his hooves together, "We have her trapped like a rat."

"Should we try to break in again?"

"Nah, we'll go on to the Apple Family Farm tomorrow night, right now I need some ointment for burns."

"Yeah, that looks nasty."

The two walked off into the night.

Sweetiebelle dropped the ear trumpet she had found at the Apple Family Farm and sighed.

They were leaving.

How much trouble can one filly cause? she thought, raising in eyebrow with a look of mischief, You'll see buster, you'll see.

Chapter 5

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Chapter 5: Apples, Apples, Everywhere!

Harry and Marv marched up to the Apple Family Homestead with gleaming eyes and bandages covering half of them.

"A-a-a-a-are you s-s-sure we won't get beat up again Harry?" stuttered Marv.

"Nah," said Harry, "We know what ta look for now. And how clever can a little filly be?"

"Well those other traps were pretty clever-" started Marv.

"Shut up Marv," Harry said, "That was a one time deal. This is a whole new game and we hold the trump card."

"That sounds like a great idea," said Marv, "Why don't we just go home and play some cards?"

"No way Marv! We started this job and we're gonna finish it! If we don't, we'll be the laughing stock of the whole crime world! Can you imagine? Two crooks that can't even take down a little filly? No, no, this is about more than the score now, we have a reputation to protect! Now get going!"

"ME!" screeched Marv, "No way, I went first last time. You go first this time!"

Harry rolled his eyes and growled.

"Fine Marv, I'll go to the front door and you take the back. That way we'll cover all our bases."

"What do I do if I see the filly?"

"Invite her to tea," said Harry, sarcasm dripping from his mouth. He rapped Marv on the forehead with his good hoof and said, "You can take care of a little filly Marv! So take care of her!"

"You mean like foalsitting?" Marv asked with a nostalgic look on his muzzle, "I haven't foalsitted since that one time I looked after my sister. Yeah, my mom and dad never really forgave me for that."

Harry rolled his eyes again and slapped Marv on the rear.

"Get going!"

Marv crept around the side of the house and approached the back door.

"Hello?" he whispered.

"What do you want?" asked a gruff stallion's voice.

Marv was about to answer when another stallion answered.

"I did the job."



"Was there something else?"

"Yeah, AC said there'd be bits in this job."

"Oh really, well how much do I owe ya?"

"One hundred grand."

Marv swallowed.

That was more than an average pony made in a year.

"Well I'm sorry ta tell ya this, but AC ain't in charge anymore. He's down at the docks takin a little swim."

Marv's eyes bugged out.

These were real gangsters he was hearing. Only gangster ponies would think so lowly of murder.

"Now listen here Snake, you got till the count of ten to get'cha lazy, no-good carcass outta here or I'll fill you full a laser blasts."

Marv swallowed hard and started backing up.

"One... Two... Ten!"

Loud noises and shafts of light shot around the room, lighting up the drapes.

Marv screamed and ran.

Sweetiebelle smiled and laughed.

A package of firecrackers sizzled at her hooves and a record player sat beside her playing Big Mac's favorite audio drama/adventure, Alicorns without souls.

"Keep the change ya lousy bum," Sweetie mouthed along with the record.

"HARRY!!!" screamed Marv, leaping into Harry's hooves, "There were gangsters and laser shots and, and, and..."

Marv's voice trailed off into scared babble.

She may have scared Marv, thought Harry, but she won't scare me.

Harry dropped Marv and shushed him, then turned to the front door.

Carefully maneuvering around the strategically placed black ice, he made his way to the front door.

Harry examined the doorknob.

He'd underestimated this filly once before and the memory of it throbbed in his hoof.

He dropped a hoof-full of snow on the doorknob, which started to steam when it landed on the knob.

"You can't fool me twice Sweetiebelle," shouted Harry, "That's right, I know your name and you know what else? I'm coming for you."

Inside the house Sweetie smiled.

The best way to get the advantage on an opponent is to make them think they've figured you out, thought Sweetiebelle, quoting in her mind what Twilight had told her about how to beat a villain, That's when they tend to get sloppy.

Harry pushed the door open and waited for the tongue of fire to shoot out.

It didn't.

"Don't have a anymore phoenixes, do ya?!?!" hollered Harry.

"Nope," said Sweetiebelle, stepping out from behind a corner.

"Good thing you gave yourself up," said Harry, "Now just come over here so I can-"

"No, no phoenixes," interrupted Sweetiebelle, "Just this."

She stepped aside.

Rainbow Dash's tennis ball machine sat behind her, filled to the brim with apples.

With a cute smile, Sweetie flicked the switch to the 'on' position.

"Oh Celestia-" started Harry, but didn't finish.

The machine started to fire apples at an insane rate. Rainbow had asked Twilight to adjust the power to, 'more her speed... like supersonic', so that's why apples shot out with barely any delay.

Harry found himself beat back out the door onto the black ice Sweetiebelle had left for him.

Harry flew into the air and landed on his back with a low thud.

"Razafrazafrigglemanetickphhbt," said Harry, spitting apples out of his mouth.

"Tsk, tsk," said Sweetiebelle, "such language. You really should watch your mouth around such young fillies."

Then, with an innocent smile, she slammed the door shut.

Harry, his legs shaking with unsteadiness and anger, clambered up and off the slick pavement.

Marv giggled at the sight of his friend.

Harry shot a silencing look at Marv.

"Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice... And that's when things start ta get ugly."

Chapter 6

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Chapter 6: Criminals are Added to the Endangered List.

It was the next night, and Harry and Marv stormed up to Fluttershy's cottage, seething with anger.

"I'll get you my filly, and all your little traps too," said Harry, his left eye twitching.

"What's wrong with your eye?"

"I'm suffering from acute 'Sweetiebelleitis'."

"Oh no, is it contagious?"

"Shut up. You take the front door, I'll go around the back."


Marv cautiously approached the front door of Fluttershy's cottage, keeping a watch for all sorts of traps.

As he approached the door, he knocked.

The door swung open without resistance, revealing a pie on a loaded spring.


KLANG! the pie tin resounded when it met Marv's face.

Coconut creme splattered everywhere and Marv scraped his face off the tin.

Spitting a tooth out of his mouth, he walked over the spring catapult in Fluttershy's living room and walked in.

"Hello? Sweetiebelle?"

"She is currently unavailable," came Sweetiebelle's voice from around the corner, "But you may feel free to speak to her secretary, Madam Bear."

A big, hairy grizzly walked around the corner and Marv froze in fear.

"Oh... H-h-hello M-m-m-m-m-mrs. B-b-b-bear. Am I t-tress-s-s-s-s-spassing? I'll l-l-l-leave right n-n-n-n-n-,"

The bear swatted Marv out the door and roared.

Then, with a shake of her head and a snort, she slammed the door shut.

Marv bolted around to the other side of the house and wrapped his hooves around Harry.

"Marv- What the? Get OFF!" Harry said, prying Marv off of him.

"Can I stay with you Harry? There are animals around here."

"Marv, what do you think we are? 'sigh' Come on."

Harry snapped the lock and entered the cottage, followed closely by Marv.

"L-l-l-look out for the b-b-b-b-b-bear. He's in the l-l-l-living room."

"Shh. Come on."

"And he's really scary."

Harry and Marv walked into Fluttershy's kitchen. They were met by an angry bunny wielding a carrot peeler and a evil expression.

"Don't worry Marv," Harry said, teasingly comforting his friend, "I won't let it hurt you."

"Uh, Harry..." Marv said, shaking, "That bunny has a-"

"Oh come on Marv," said Harry, rubbing the bunny's ears, "It's just a cute, widdle, bunny wabbit. What's it gonna do?"

Angel bunny (for of course it was he) growled and began swinging the peeler wildly about.

After a few moments, he stopped to catch his breath.

"Ha, ha," said Harry, "Ya missed."

Angel grinned sadistically and clapped his paws together.

Both Harry and Marv's tails and manes, (though Harry still didn't have that much of a mane), fell to the ground. They had been neatly separated from their heads by the utensil-holding bunny.

"I'll get you for this..." hissed Harry.

Angel grabbed a black napkin from the cupboard, tied it around his neck, and ran between the two ponies.

Their was a sound of a swinging peeler and both Harry and Marv inspected their sides.

They both had a large 'A' shaved on their flanks next to their cutie marks.

"Why you little..." Harry started.

Angel Bunny turned around, gave a coy smile and jumped out the window onto a waiting Sweetiebelle.

Angel Bunny waved his paw in the air, motioning Sweetiebelle to ride away.

"You're kidding, right?" she asked, with a raised eyebrow.

Angel waved his paw more wildly and started making angry noises.

"What do you think you are? An action hero?"

Angel Bunny slapped Sweetiebelle on the rear.

"Do you want me to tell my sister about you buster?"

Angel glared and Sweetiebelle and slapped her again.

"She'll tell Fluttershy," Sweetie taunted.

Angel's eyes bugged out and he immediately began twiddling his paws and whistling.

"That's more like it," Sweetiebelle said. Then, turning to Harry and Marv she said, "You know, if you want to go... Now's the time."

"You think we'll give up?" Harry yelled, "NEVER!"

"Very well, but you have been warned."

Sweetiebelle and Angel galloped around the house, undoubtedly to prepare the next trap.

"I betcha that bear's hiding around here somewhere."

"Marv," said Harry, inspecting his 'A', "If you don't shut up, that bear'll be the least of your problems."

They continued to creep through the house until they entered the living room.

There was no bear around.

Harry glared at Marv.

"Scary bear in the living room huh?"

"I tell you he was here."


"Who said that?" Marv asked, eyes darting about.

"Me." came Sweetie's familiar voice, "And like I already said. Beartha Bearly is a lady. Oh Beartha!"

The ground beneath Harry and Marv began to move.

Suddenly they noticed that the seemingly innocent rug was in fact a bear lying flat on the ground.

"AHHHHHHH!" screamed Harry and Marv as Beartha picked them up in her enormous paws.

She threw them out the front door and an army of cardinals chased them off the property.

Sweetiebelle bro-hoofed Angel and Beartha and then yelled out the door, "See ya tomorrow night!"

Chapter 7

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Chapter 7: To Grill a Burglar.

"Alright Marv, this is the one. No screw-ups this time."

"Got it."

"No, I don't think ya do," said Harry, grabbing Marv's ear and pointing at the castle, "If you said Rarity, Applejack, Fluttershy and Pinkie Pie anywhere in Equestria, almost nopony will think twice about it. You say 'Twilight Sparkle' and everypony listens. If we say, 'We robbed Princess Twilight Sparkle' ponies will listen and respect us. Mares will finally like us. And our parents might start telling everypony they're related to us again!"

Both Harry and Marv's eyes lit up with the thought of it.

"Well, what are we waiting for?" Marv said, trotting forward giddily.

Harry grabbed his tail.

"The grappling hook Marv, that's what. I'm not taking any chance of going through the front door and through that filly's little house of horror. This time, we enter from the top, we leave from the top. She'll never expect us to come in through the skylight."

Marv nodded and passed the Harry the grappling hook.

With a few deft swings, Harry swung the grappling hook and attached it to the top of the castle.

Slowly, he and Marv began to scale the behemoth structure.

When they got to about halfway up the building, Sweetiebelle popped her head out of a window.

"Hiya," she said, waving her hoof, "But seriously though. The skylight? How predictable."

She rolled her eyes.

"We'll see about that," said Harry, attempting to get the filly. But much to Harry's dismay, the open window was just out of hooves length.

Sweetiebelle shook her head.

"Tsk, tsk. You know, this is starting to get boring."

She pulled out a pair of clipping shears and snipped the rope.

"Oh-" began Harry, but gravity ripped the words from his mouth as he and Marv plummeted.

"You really should be more careful!" hollered Sweetiebelle, before closing the window and moving on to her next trap.

Harry and Marv stood up and dusted themselves off.

"Come on Marv," shouted Harry, hugging the tree and trying to shimmy up.

"I say we just use the door Harry."

"That's just what she wants, the little devil! Let's go!"

Marv tapped Harry's shoulder but Harry persisted in trying to climb the crystal tree.


"Shut up you wimp. I'll get up their if I have to die in the attempt!"

"I know but why not-"

"Oh what would you know? You've been wanting to give up since we started! Well not me, I'll-"

"Why don't we just use the hot air balloon?" Marv shouted.

"Oh..." said Harry, when he turned to notice the balloon sitting not two-hundred yards away, "well why didn't you just say so Marv? Come on."

Harry and Marv clambered into the balloon and slowly began to float up.

They were doing just fine until they heard a noise.


"What was that?" asked Marv, shaking.

"I'll bet it was another trap!" Harry yelled.

And he was indeed, correct.

They looked to see Sweetiebelle, shooting rocks from a slingshot at the balloon, punching small holes in the fabric.

"It's now or never Marv!" yelled Harry, grabbing his accomplice and jumping out of the balloon.

They landed on the skylight, broke a hole in it and went tumbling through.

Harry was the first one up and Marv followed soon after.

They looked around.

They were inside Twilight's castle, standing in some long hallway.

"Which way?" asked a slightly dazed Marv.

Harry called upon the mystical powers of the 'eenie-meenie-minie-moe' gods and chose the left.

They swung open some doors and entered Twilight's vast library.

"Awwww," said Marv, "It's just books."

"But their Princess's books Marv," Harry said, as he stared at the goldmine before him, "Do you know how much these are probably worth? Come on, grab as many as you can and let's get out of here."

Harry and Marv attacked to bookshelves with a newfound vigor.

They plucked tome after tome from the shelves and shoved them into their saddlebags.

"I wonder what this one's about?" pondered Marv, opening a copy of The Apples of Wrath.

An apple shot from the book and plastered Marv in the face.

"What in the hoof's wrong with that book?" asked Harry when he saw what happened.

"'Phtooey' I don't know. Try yours."

Harry opened a copy of To Roast a Pigeon and a tongue of fire shot in his face, burning his face again, right after it had just begun to heal.

More books fell off the shelves and opened up.

Suddenly there was chaos in Twilight's library and unrelated things attacked the two ponies.

"Thanks," said Sweetiebelle, turning to Discord, "You gonna stick around?"

"Are you kidding?" he asked, "They don't have a chance. I'm gonna sit back and watch. But first, I need to use the little stallion's room."

Discord paused the movie, got up and left the theater.

After a moment or two, he came back in with a tub of popcorn and a remote.

He turned the volume up and pressed, 'play'.

Sweetiebelle looked around in bewilderment.

"Where'd he go?"

She shrugged and moved on to her next trap.

Harry and Marv had slowly closed all the books and returned them to the shelves out of fear.

"Let's go somewhere else," said Harry,

They crept down the hall and entered the throne room.

They stared for a moment at the seven thrones and the map until Harry snapped back to the job at hoof.

"Alright Marv, why don't we get some of the crystals from that fancy chandelier? I betcha they'll go for even more than those books."

Harry boosted Marv onto his shoulders so he could reach the crystals.


Marv was quickly knocked to the ground though.

"Marv, what happened?" asked a clueless Harry.

"Sweetie-" started Marv.

Harry turned around to see Sweetiebelle dropping a paint can on a string towards him.


"-Belle," he finished as the world went black.

Harry and Marv slowly awoke to see Sweetiebelle standing over them.

"Can I talk to you?" she asked.

"NO!" screamed Harry, jumping up and grabbing her, "Now that I've got my hooves on you, I'm gonna do all the horrible stuff you did to Marv and me."

"I," corrected Sweetiebelle, "Look, I just figured that once I had you thoroughly beat up, you'd listen. I wanted to ask you why you're doing this."

Marv and Harry glared at her.

"What kind of stupid, idio-"

"Language," Sweetiebelle interrupted.

"I haven't said anything dirty!"

"No, but you were thinking it."

"AHHHH! We're doing this because you're a jerk!"

"No, I meant, why are you breaking into places."

"Because that's all we know how to do!" shouted Harry, "Didn't you see our cutie marks?!?!"

"Well it seems to me you might be interpreting them wrong."

"Well what are you gonna do?" asked Harry, "Have somepony sneak up and hit us over the head with a shovel?"

Discord looked at the two ponies and dropped the shovel he was holding.

He walked back to his seat and continued watching.

Harry and Marv turned around and stared at the shovel lying on the ground.

"How did that get there?" asked Marv.

"I don't think I wanna know."

"Now can we talk?"

Sweetiebelle looked into Harry's eyes with a look that could have made a crocodile cry.

"'Groan' Okay."

Harry, Marv and Sweetiebelle sat down.

Harry jumped up and screamed.

"What the?"

"Oh sorry," said Sweetiebelle, sweeping up some legos on the ground, "They were a contingency trap in case you didn't listen."

Harry rubbed his rump and said, "Well, do tell how we've misinterpreted our life callings."

"Well," said Sweetiebelle, "I've been observing you since you began breaking into homes and you both have certain... Talents."

She pointed to Harry.

"You my friend, seem to be quite the planner. And you," she pointed to Marv, "Have quite a hoof in... Demolition. Maybe building too, if you put your mind to it."

"Well how can we be sure?" asked Harry.

"I'll tell ya what," said Sweetiebelle, "I'll help you prove it to yourselves while you help me clean up all the mess we created. Deal?"

Harry and Marv looked at each other.

Over the past couple of days, they had been beaten, burnt and bruised. They were willing to do almost anything at this point to end the suffering.

"Deal," they said in unison.

"Good," said Sweetiebelle, "Now first we'll need some blueprints and plans about how and what to clean up. Next, we'll need to actually execute them."

Things were finally coming together.

Chapter 8

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Chapter 8: We Wish You a Happy Hearthwarming.

A train pulled up to the Ponyville train station, and a bedragled Rarity bounded off.

"I'm... 'gasp'... Coming... 'gasp'... Sweetiebelle," she said, tarrying barely a moment before dashing off to her home.

The rest of the ponies followed her close behind.

They ran up to Carousel Boutique and were dumbfounded by the building.

Lights decorated the Boutique and candles sat in every window. Rarity felt a tear in her eye when she was the two Hearthwarming dolls sitting above the fireplace and the brilliantly decorated tree next to that.

"Welcome home," said Sweetiebelle, throwing open the door.

"Oh Sweetiebelle," screamed Rarity, embracing her little sister, "Are you alright? How did you manage to decorate all by yoursel-"

She was interrupted when she saw Harry and Marv standing inside the house.

They looked down in embarrassment.

"Well, well, well," said Rarity, approaching the duo, "You must be the ponies who looked after Sweetiebelle while I was away. I can't thank you enough."

She hugged Harry and Marv tightly, causing them both to blush.

"I hope she wasn't too much trouble for you."

"No trouble at all," said Harry, winking at Sweetiebelle.

"Well thank you again," said Rarity.

She caught a look at herself in the window and gasped.

"Oh my I look simply awful! Spike, would you please bring my things?"

She marched into Carousel Boutique, followed closely by the infatuated dragon.

After they all hugged Sweetiebelle and said how glad they were to see she was alright, everypony else returned home except Pinkie, Applebloom and Scootaloo.

Sweetiebelle looked at Harry and Marv.

"Well, I'll miss you guys. Where do ya think you'll go?"

"Probably Manehattan," said Harry, "There's a lot of jobs in construction available. I guess we have you to thank for all this. You really helped us figure out who we truly are."

Harry and Marv, hugged Sweetiebelle and trotted away to catch the next train to Manehattan.

"What was that all about?" asked Applebloom.

"I really don't know girls. I helped them discover their true selves and it felt really good."

Pinkie sucked in a great breath of air.

"I feel like this might be... what I'm destined to do girls."

Pinkie's face turned red.

"Well anyway," said Scootaloo, "Want to go try out hooves at a skating cutie mark?"

"That sounds awesome!" Applebloom said.

After a moment, Sweetiebelle agreed and the trio headed to the nearest frozen lake.

Pinkie exhaled and collapsed.

"That was a close one."

"Tell me about it," said Discord as the end credits began to roll.