"Hey! I'll bet you haven't heard yet!"
It was always creepy at night at Ponyville Mortuary. Even though the dead bodies lay behind a large, heavy metal door, the place still had a very eerie atmosphere.
"Well, rookie, they say this place is haunted..."
"Even though we're new employees, I know the whole story!"
The mortuary had two new night-guards. After the 'departure' of the last one, obviously they needed another. One started today and the other started about three days ago.
The rookie couldn't help himself. "You mean... the Mad Mare?"
"Yep!" the other guard teased, "Don't you remember?"
"I remember she came in here and butchered the bodies..." the rookie said giving a slight shiver and looking behind him. The dark hallways were always so creepy...
"Oh but that's not all!" the other teased and grinning.
The guard smiled harder and beckoned towards the rookie.
"Follow me," he whispered.
Reluctant to be left alone in the creaking hallways, the rookie guard followed. And as he followed, his more experienced partner relayed the story.
"Well," he began, "The Mad Mare of Ponyville came in here one night and stole the body parts from a number of ponies... She even murdered the last guard and-" he flipped around and lit his flashlight beneath his face, "Stole his head!"
The older guard smirked and continued walking.
"You don't know what she did with the body parts, do you?" he asked.
"N-no..." replied the rookie, not sure he wanted to find out.
"Well," the older guard said, "She took her bloody parts, sewed them together, and made herself a husband!"
"A what?!" the rookie exclaimed.
"Oh yeah!" the other replied, "She took a needle and twine and made a monster!"
The rookie shuddered at the thought. He pictured a bloody limping figure with mismatched limbs. He had read stories about zombies and things like that.
"And you know what she did next?" the older guard continued.
"What? What did she do?" The rookie couldn't help himself. He was scared out of his wits, but his curiosity got the better of him.
"She killed her creation," they arrived at a large metal door, "and then she killed her own best FRIEND."
He opened the door. The refrigerated room was, as usual, filled with bodies.
"Why are we here?!" the rookie whispered, "Are we allowed to be here?!" He was always respectful around the dead.
"It's fine! Follow me!" the other replied.
The two walked along the aisles of bodies.
"So she killed her best friend?!" the rookie whispered. What in the name of Celestia could drive a pony to do that?
"Yep," they came to a stop, "and here she is."
"THE MAD MARE?!!" the rookie exclaimed quietly.
"No, you dope!" the other replied, "She's in the loony bin! This is one of her victims. Her best friend."
They both looked down upon a bright pink mare. Her three balloons of a cutie mark were still vivid and her mane lay straight. Although dead, she wore a pained expression on her face.
"Th-there's a kn-knife in her..." the rookie began.
"That's the knife she was murdered with," the other said. Again he whipped out his flashlight, "BY THE MAD MARE!! OOOHH OOOOHHH!!"
"S-Stopit!!" the rookie said cringing in fear.
The older guard smirked and chortled. The rookie regained his composure and looked down at the pink body.
"Why don't they take the knife out of her neck?" he asked, "Isn't that disrespectful?"
"Ah beats me," the other guard replied, "C'mon. Let's get back to our post so we don't get in trouble. Or so we can prevent the Mad Mare form returning!"
The rookie winced. The older guard gave a guffaw and headed towards the door. Before the rookie turned to leave, he looked back at the pink mare. He gave a sigh, looked left and right, and grasped the knife's handle protruding from the pink pony's throat. He tugged at it, and with more resistance than he had expected, the knife slid out of the mare's neck.
"Hey! C'mon! Let's go!" the older guard shouted from the other side of the chilled room.
"Uh... C-coming!" the rookie shouted. He looked back down at the mare, her neck agape, and laid the knife down next to her. "Rest in peace..." he whispered and trotted off. He closed and locked the door behind him.
The chilled room was again dead silent. Not a muscle moved and not a breath was taken. The pink pony lay on her table, still dead. Her neck was still agape from the knife's cut, the knife lying next to her head.
Tonight was a strange night however. By will of some unexplainable force, things turned to the worst.
From the slit in the pony's throat came a small dribble of blood. But, a dead body's blood shouldn't be flowing... right?
As the blood continued to flow, the eyes of the once dead mare snapped open. They were black as coal, no iris or pupil visible. She opened her mouth wide and took a great shuddering breath. Slowly she sat up straight.
Pinkemina Diane Pie looked down at the knife on her table. She lifted a hoof to her throat and felt the cold, sticky, dribbling blood issuing from the cut. She hopped off of her table and looked back at it into its reflective surface. Her own figure stared back with those gruesome, black, pupil-less eyes.
She started to giggle. It grew louder and louder.
Fluttershy had decided to visit the library this afternoon. Being in charge of caring for the little critters, she couldn't leave out a certain purple baby dragon or unicorn.
"Is Twilight going to be okay, Spike?"
"I dunno, Fluttershy. She's been pretty down lately. But I can't blame her..."
"You're still upset about Rarity, aren't you?"
Spike sniffed, "Yeah... I did really did have a crush on her, you know?"
Fluttershy hugged the baby dragon.
"It'll be alright," she said holding him, "Rarity is safe where she's at now."
"I know..." Spike replied quietly.
Ponyville had been very subdued lately. But could you blame them? Two of its most popular and identifiable members were gone. The finishing gem in a necklace was ruined and the life of the party was snuffed out. Everyone was taking it very hard.
Sugar Cube Corner was very quiet now a days. Pinkie Pie wasn't there to whip up her special treats or throw her fantastic parties. I mean, have you ever been to one of them? They're to die for. Inside, the building was draped in black to commemorate Pinkie's death. A small photo of her stood beside the window. There was a small caption.
'Pinkemina Diane Pie,
In loving memory
Of the life of everypony's party.
Died for her love of heart.
Rest in peace, young Pinkie Pie.'
The photo seemed blurred and the glass covering it was chipped at one end.
The four remaining friends had taken the past events harder than the rest of town. For each one, guilt stabbed at their hearts like a cold icicle. Why hadn't they listened to Pinkie Pie? They hadn't doubted her 'Pinkie Sense' up until a few days ago, so why did they stop? Perhaps if they did listen to her, the two fiends would still be happily living with the rest.
Twilight was locked in her room upstairs above the library. She gave a long sad sigh. She was still depressed about Pinkie Pie and Rarity. The thought of them stirred up more tears. That's all she did these days. Cry. Maybe it was because she hadn't taken Pinkie Pie seriously. Maybe it was because she missed Rarity so much her heart burned. She would never again be with the white bodied and purple maned mare. Never.
And Pinkie Pie. Hadn't she learned that Pinkie's actions and traits were far beyond any other pony's comprehension? The fact that Twilight's own ignorance lead to Pinkie's death pressed heavily on her mind. She would never forget it.
Again Twilight sighed. What was the point of locking herself in her room for the sake of her best friend and lost crush? Staying here wouldn't help anything. She should be helping out planning Pinkie's upcoming funeral. She picked herself off her bed.
Twilight magicked her brush from her desk and started to brush her mane in front of the window. She looked dreadful. Her eyes were puffy from crying, her hair was in a right state, and she had bags under her eyes from lack of sleep.
"Well, Twilight Sparkle," she said to her reflection, "What are you going to do today?"
"Wallow in my own guilt!"
Twilight dropped her brush and it fell to the floor with a loud clatter. She hadn't said those last words. She turned around and looked around her room. She was the only one there..
"Over here, you silly!"
Twilight whipped around back to her mirror and gave a terrified scream.
In the mirror looking back at her as if from another side of a grimy window stood Pinkie Pie. Her eyes were pitch black and no pupils were visible. She had a small trail of blood leaking from the corner of her eyes and the gash in her throat.
"P-Pinkie Pie!" Twilight shouted. What she saw horrified her. Her friend was supposed to be dead.
"Actually, I prefer to be called Pinkemina now," Pinkie said through the mirror. Her voice seemed to be issuing more from the cut in her throat than her mouth, "Or maybe Diane? Or just Pie? Actually, Pinkie Pie is just fine!"
"Wh-what-" Twilight sputtered.
"What am I doing here?" Pinkie said showing off a wicked grin. Each of her teeth were grotesquely sharpened to a point. "You didn't listen to me. None of you did. And what did I get from trying to stop that bitch Rarity? My own death. All I did was try and save her from herself. I thought I had my best friends' undying trust. But I was wrong. Dead wrong." Pinkie giggled and chuckled at her own joke.
The way Pinkie Pie laughed wasn't what it used to be like. It wasn't full of the life, joy, and fuzziness it used to have. It sent a shiver up Twilight's spine. Pinkie Pie pressed her face against the glass, smearing some blood onto its surface. Twilight recoiled.
"And you what I'm gonna do?" Pinkie said with the grin still stuck on her face, "I'm going to teach each and every one of you a lesson. But this time, you'll get my message. And guess what? You can't stop me! You can't giggle at this ghostie and make it go away! Toodles!"
Pinkie Pie disappeared. Twilight sat there in utter shock. Had what she had just seen for real? Was her mind playing tricks on her? But a creeping thought entered through the back of her mind.
'Never doubt Pinkie Pie.'
Applejack was working hard on the farm again. Perhaps a bit too hard. A number of the apple trees had ugly dents in them and bark had been broken off. Applejack bucked another tree, but this time, it had splintered and fallen over.
She looked down at the young fallen tree. She snorted in frustration and anger. Anger at herself. She knew that Pinkie Pie's death was her fault. She had thought it was one of Pinkie's jokes and brushed it off. And she hated herself for doing so. Being the element of honesty, she should've known it was the truth. Now the death of her friend was weighted down on her heart. She let out an agonizing scream of fury, guilt, and depression.
The few days since Pinkie's death and Rarity's madness weren't kind to Applejack. As she stood there, Applejack could remember every detail if that day. A pure white body bag lying outside of the boutique and Rarity being held down and forced into a strait jacket and hauled away. She even remembered Applebloom asking what happened. Applejack hadn't seen her friends ever since. She tried pounding out her guilt into the trees, but if anyone saw the current state of them, they could tell Applejack had a lot on her mind.
"How're y' holdin' up?"
Applejack looked up to see Big Macintosh and Applebloom standing in front of her.
"Jus' fine," Applejack mumbled, "Ah failed mah duty as the element of honesty, ah practically killed mah bes' friend, 'nother one of them is in the mad house, an' ah gone an' broke another tree..." she looked back up at her older brother, tears streaming down her face, "An' how're y'all?"
Big Macintosh didn't say anything. He lifted up his hoof and held his sister in a tight hug. He was a man of little words. He knew that anything he said wasn't going to help at the moment.
"Thanks Big Mac..." Applejack said holding him, "Y' always know what t' say..."
"Is big sis gonna be okay?" Applebloom whispered. Even she was tearing up.
"Ah..." Big Mac started to say, "Ah don't know..."
They stood there for a long time, Applejack crying into her brother's shoulder. She was usually so proud and strong and it killed her to cry like a little filly, but she didn't care. To anyone seeing this scene, it would've hurt to watch.
Night slowly fell on Ponyville. Everyone in Sweet Apple Acres was asleep. Applebloom was tucked in tight and Big Mac was fast asleep. However Applejack was still wide awake. She was in the bathtub of the bathroom. Actually, she had been in there for a few hours. The water had gotten cold, all the bubble bath had disappeared, and her hooves had gotten wrinkly. She sighed. 'Well, ah ain't gonna drown in this water...' she thought to herself, halfheartedly joking.
Applejack slipped out of the tub. She was still sopping wet as she made her way to the bathroom window. Her hair was plastered to her body because of the water and her coat was still dripping.
"Rarity would've been overjoyed if saw me takin' a nice long bath..." she said aloud smiling a small smile, "But ah shouldn't be happy right now. I should be punished fer what ah did t' Pinkie Pah..."
"My thoughts exactly!"
The next series of events happened very quickly and all at once, so bear with me.
Applejack heard the voice and immediately recognized it as Pinkie Pie's. Through the mirror, she saw Pinkie, her eyes black as tar, behind her holding a stick. It looked like the kind used to smash piñatas. Applejack's eyes widened in horror at the sight of her dead friend. Pinkie swung the stick down onto Applejack's head with a sickening crack! Applejack was knocked out.
Applejack woke up, head throbbing and vision bleary. She must have slipped on the bathroom floor and hit her head. She reached up to feel her aching skull, but then she realized that her hooves were tied down to a table. She was laying stomach down on a wooden table, tied down and unable to move.
Panicking, she looked around. Applejack found herself in the old barn away from her house.
"Applejack!" screamed a small voice.
"Applebloom?" she called back, "Applebloom! What's goin' on! Why am ah tied down!"
"Oh you're awake!"
Applejack again looked around. From one of the darker corners of the barn, her old and once dead friend Pinkie Pie emerged.
"P-Pinkie Pie?" she stuttered. Her appearance was what kept Applejack still. She was thin and her color was somewhat faded. Her once bouncy, flamboyant mane was again flat and curtain-like. Also, Applejack couldn't tear her gaze away from her black eyes.
"Yep it's me!" Pinkie squealed. She stood, nose inches away from Applejack, and looked into her face, "Remember me? Your favorite joker? Our favorite party Pinkie?"
"How are y-" Applejack started to say, but she was cut off by Pinkie Pie.
"How am I here?" she chirruped, "Let me answer that in a joke! So a crazy, revenge hungry pony walks into a barn to find something to make the pains stop. What does she find?"
Applejack whimpered at Pinkie's gaze. It was cold and piercing, filled with malice and hate.
"I asked WHAT DID SHE FIND?!" shouted Pinkie Pie, her teeth bared in fury.
"Ah don't know!" cried Applejack. She was trembling from the horrible sight that was Pinkie Pie. The shock of seeing her old friend was overwhelming and the guilt was flowing back in.
"I'll tell you what," Pinkie growled, smiling again, "She found a bunch of sour apples! You thought everything I said was a joke."
"N-no! Pinkie Pie I-"
"You NEVER took me seriously," Pinkie continued, "If you would've just listened to me, maybe Rarity would still be here. Maybe I would still BE ALIVE!"
Pinkie Pie walked up to Applebloom. Applebloom shrieked in terror.
"What're y' goin' t'do?!" Applejack shouted, "Y'stay away from mah sister!"
Pinkie Pie turned around to face Applejack.
"I'll show you real," she whispered smiling, but Applejack caught every word, "You want serious? I'll give you serious. No jokes. Just pure, real fun!"
She turned again to face Applebloom. Smiling her usual silly smile, Pinkie looked into her eyes. They were contracted in fear. Pinkie Pie slowly turned her head to the left. But it kept going. With sickly cracks and pops, her head spun three and hundred and sixty degrees around and then some. Applebloom screamed in utter horror at this sight. Pinkie Pie's tongue was lolling out and a trickle of blood issued from her mouth. Applebloom fought at her bindings, unable to avert her gaze from the grotesque scenery of Pinkie's contorting head and neck.
"STOPITSTOPITSTOPIT!" screamed Applebloom, her body too scared to produce the tears her eyes so desperately wanted to shed.
"Stop!! Yer scarin' her!" yelled Applejack. Her senses as an elder sister were coming into play, "Ah said STOP!"
With a swift movement and an ugly crack, Pinkie's head flipped upwards in an arch, staring upside-down at Applejack.
"Scaring her?" she asked, "Oh, I'm doing more than just scaring her! I'm SCARRING her!" She cracked her head back to Applebloom's face, "It's because of YOUR SISTER I'm like this. It's because of YOUR SISTER that I'm doing this to you, that she's letting me do this!"
Applebloom whimpered weakly, shaking in fear. She had finally managed to shut her eyes.
"Don't listen t'her!" Applejack shouted, "Ah would never let her do anythin'!"
"Oh but it’s true!" giggled Pinkie Pie, "It's. All. Your. Sister's. Fault. Applejack."
Applebloom gave another terrified scream. She opened her eyes just the smallest of cracks to check if the monster was gone, to see if her big sister had come to the rescue.
She saw Pinkie Pie not two centimeters from her own face.
Applebloom gasped and fainted.
Satisfied with what she had accomplished, Pinkie Pie's head twisted back to its original setting. She trotted back towards Applejack.
"What did y'do t'her?!" she asked in shock.
"I traumatized her," Pinkie said, "Think about it, whenever she looks at you, all she will see is me!" She giggled maliciously, "Now, I think it's your turn!"
Pinkie left for a second and came back almost immediately with a white hot branding iron, its head shaped like an apple. It was the one Big Mac used on the family pigs.
"Wh-what're you..." Applejack whispered. But she already knew. Not even the bravest pony in the whole wide world wouldn’t have been terrified at Applejack's fate.
"It's my turn," Pinkie said, circling around to Applejack's left flank, "To scar YOU!"
She aimed the burning hot head of the branding iron at Applejack's flank. Applejack struggled against the tight ropes binding her. Pinkie Pie smiled.
Big Mac awoke to the most horrible sound in the world. Somepony was screaming the living hell out of their lungs. And he knew who it was the moment he heard it.
He jumped out of bed and sprinted outside to find the source of the terrible shriek. Again, he heard it, the scream, but now, along with a sickening hissss noise. The barn. Big Macintosh barged into the barn so hard the doors flew off of heir hinges. As his eyes grew accustomed to the dim light, she saw his sisters tied up.
"Applejack! Applebloom!" he shouted.
He looked around again and saw the most peculiar thing. A pink pony was watching from the darkest corner. As soon as their eyes met, she vanished. Big Mac ran over to Applejack and untied her. She was crying and she winced in pain. He saw immediately what was wrong. On both of his sister's flanks were ugly, raw burns. The smell of singed hair and flesh lingered in the air. The Apple family crest was visible on the burns. One large apple shaped burn encircled the small three apples that were Applejack's cutie marks.
"Spike, can you get that?"
Someone had just knocked on the door of the library. Spike had opened up the door to find Big Macintosh filling up the door frame.
"Hey Twilight? Fluttershy? Big Macintosh is here!" Spike called out.
Both Twilight and Fluttershy came down stairs. Fluttershy had been visiting every day to make sure Twilight was alright. She stayed unusually close to Twilight.
"Oh, hello Big Macintosh," Twilight said, "I-is there anything I can help you with?"
"Miss Twilight," he said in his usual slow voice, "Ma'am, ah think we have a problem..."
"What happened?" asked Fluttershy.
"Ah think yer friend Pinkie Pie is back," Big Mac said coldly," An' she's already given mah sisters a visit..."
From somewhere behind him he drew out a long branding iron and dropped it to the floor with a dull CLUNK. It was still warm and stuck to it were a few golden orange hairs. The two mares and Spike stared at it. Spike clapped his hands to his mouth.
"I think I'm gonna hurl-!" Spike uttered before running into the bathroom.
"Ah think you best watch out fer yerselves..." Big Macintosh said. On his face, Twilight and Fluttershy saw, he wore an expression of genuine worry and fear. Big Macintosh. Big Macintosh.
She had not left her cloud home since Pinkie Pie's death. There were empty bottles of potent liquor littering the floors and tables.
"C'mon, Dash. It'll be alright,"
"Sh-she was my best friend..."
Soarin did all he could to comfort the one he loved. Rainbow Dash was in her room, another bottle clutched in her hoof. Soarin had come over again for another visit to make sure she was alright. He may be a klutz at times, but he knew when somepony hurt inside. He leaned in and gave her a kiss on the cheek.
"Just know that I'll be here for you anytime," he said, "Try not to drink too much tonight, okay?"
"Alright," Rainbow Dash said quietly. She wiped another tear from her eye, "I-I think I just want to be alone right now..."
Soaring obliged, "Take all the time you need, okay?"
He gave her another kiss and left the house.
Rainbow Dash gave a sigh. She was sad. She was hung over. She was miserable. But could you blame her? Nope. You couldn't. Rainbow Dash took another deep swig from the bottle. Not even Buck Daniel's whiskey could drown out the guilt.
She and Pinkie Pie had a connection on a deeper level. It wasn't just pranks and laughs. They were opposites. She was cool and fast flying. Pinkie Pie was silly and loving. And opposites attract. And because of this, Rainbow Dash took Pinkie's death the hardest. Dash had even started drinking to make the pain stop. Of course this worried everypony, but they just left her be. She had to grieve in her own way. She wasn't loyal enough to Pinkie Pie and for that she had lost her life.
Tears welled up in Rainbow Dash's eyes as she thought about Pinkie. She had to move on. Dash would rot in place if she didn't. It was either that or die of alcohol poisoning. Well... Maybe just one more little sip... Pinkie wouldn't have wanted that. She wouldn't want Rainbow Dash to wallow in guilt and melt to nothing.
Dash got up from her bed reluctantly. She dropped the now empty bottle to the floor. Her head was spinning and she felt sick. A hangover from the night before and more drink didn't exactly help. Maybe a nice hot shower would clear her mind. She tipsily entered the bathroom and then clambered into the shower. Dash turned the water on and let the hot jet cover her. As she stood in the shower, warm steam surrounded her.
"I should've trusted Pinkie Pie," she said aloud, "*Hic* Ugh... horsefeathers!"
Rainbow Dash shouted in frustration. She knew it. It was all her fault. She was Pinkie's best friend, and being the element of loyalty, she should have trusted Pinkie's word all the way.
"I'm so stupid..." she mumbled.
"Not just stupid, Dashie..."
Rainbow Dash gasped and flipped around. All she saw was steamy fog. She leapt out of the shower, the steam still thick in the bathroom.
"Why did you let me die, Rainbow Dash?"
"Pinkie Pie?!" Dash asked in bewilderment, "I-I didn't!"
"Yes you did..." Pinkie's voice continued, "Dashie, you were my best friend..."
"I'm going crazy... I drank too much..." Rainbow Dash muttered. She wiped some fog from the mirror. But she immediately jumped back in shock.
In the mirror looking back was not her own reflection, but Pinkie Pie. She stared back at Rainbow Dash with her light blue eyes. Tears were streaming down them.
"How could you?" Pinkie whispered, "How could you let me die?.."
"No!" Dash yelled back, "I didn't! I swear!"
"Then why didn't you believe me? All I wanted was the best for Rarity. But you didn't listen..."
"Please!" Rainbow Dash shouted, "Forgive me... I swear I didn't know..."
"You hurt me really deep, Dashie," Pinkie smiled but Rainbow Dash didn't notice. Pinkie Pie didn't need to physically touch Dash to hurt her. She knew the connection she had with Dash and the overwhelming amount of guilt she felt. Pinkie could tear out her heart without even touching her.
"Why did you let me go alone?" Pinkie asked, "I was so scared..."
Rainbow Dash was now crying on the floor of the bathroom.
"I'm such a flip flop..." she cried, "I should have believed in you. I was so stupid..."
"Yes, yes you were!" said Pinkie Pie. She could feel it. Pinkie could feel Rainbow Dash's heart breaking again. The hot steam and the rage of emotions flooded Dash's senses, "You were untrusting."
"You were uncaring," Pinkie continued.
"No! Pinkie Pie, I didn't-"
"You were the worst friend," Pinkie Pie said smiling.
"I-I..." tears started to stream again.
"You were unloyal, Rainbow Dash."
Rainbow Dash screamed and huddled up on the floor. She started to tremble uncontrollably and hid her face in her forehooves. Trying to block out Pinkie Pie, she started to sing thickly through her uncontrolled sobs.
When I was as scared as a filly
And my hopes were crashing down
The awful guilt and horrors
They would always make me frown.
I cried under the covers
From what I knew was true
But Pinkie Pie would've said: that wasn't the Dash
That I've always loved and knew.
She'd say: Dashie, you gotta stand up tall,
Stop and face your fears,
Or else the guilt will come back
And the tears will reappear...
"HA HA HA!!" mocked Pinkie Pie.
Pinkie Pie smiled a wicked smile. How sweet. Rainbow Dash had made a song about her. And it was dreadfully depressing!
"Giggle at the ghostie, Rainbow Dash! Laugh your miserable heart out!"
Down on the ground, some ways away from the busier parts of town, there was a bar. The Colt's Stable it was called. It wasn't a big place, but it had its customers. There were ponies who were unwinding after a hectic day with a cold drink, a pony or two drinking away their loneliness, ponies trying to get dates, and a Pegasus stallion in a blue jumpsuit with yellow lightning patterns. He walked up to the bar and sat down heavily on the stool.
"What can I get you, hun?" asked the bar tender. She was a young earth pony with a light green mane, an even lighter green coat, a smoking cigarette in her mouth, and a small martini glass as a cutie mark.
"Give me a Horse Drowner on the rocks," he said, "Double."
The bar mare took out a few mixing glasses and five different liquors. There was the soft 'clink clink' as the ice cubes fell into a glass. She got to work mixing the drink together.
"Drinkin' hard tonight, huh?" she asked through the smoke between her lips, "Hard day or just out to party hard?"
"Terrible day..." sighed Soarin, "My girlfriend's friend just died and she's been taking it real hard."
"I'm so sorry!" gasped the bar tender, "Is she the one who?..."
"Yeah," said Soarin, "I think her name was Pinkie Pie."
The bar tender looked down at Soarin. He looked worried and tired. Finally she spoke up.
"You know," the bar tender began, "I see a lot of sad folk come through this bar. Trust me... It's part of the job. But I don't think I've seen anything like you before."
She put her hoof on Soarin's and stared into his eyes. The bar mare took a long drag on the cigarette and snuffed it out in an ash tray. Soarin raised his eyebrows.
"I don't usually give advice to jumpsuit wearin' skyheads," Soarin smiled weakly, "But I think you just need to let your girlfriend know you're there for her."
She winked and handed him the drink.
"On the house,"
"Thanks," replied Soarin. He'd leave a big tip.
"Whut abou' me?" mumbled a unicorn stallion from the other side of the bar. He clearly had more drinks than he could handle.
"Nuh uh," said the bar mare, "You've had enough!"
As she wrestled the intoxicated unicorn out of the bar, Soarin sipped his drink and felt it burn his throat. He thought about Rainbow Dash and her sadness. The bar mare was right. He should be with her. Who knows, maybe this time she'll be alright. Heck, Soarin might even be able to pull Rainbow away from her rum and whiskey. He downed the rest of the liquor and placed a generous tip in a tip jar.
"You come and visit any time, stranger!" called the bar mare as he headed towards the door.
Soarin was soarin' through the air. The drink was strong and he still felt a little light headed. He made his way to his lover's cloud home, hiccupping all along the way. The door was unlocked and he let himself in. The lights were off and there wasn't a single sound.
"Dash?" called Soarin. Maybe she passed out again.
He made his way up to Rainbow Dash's room. He opened the door. There was a clatter of empty bottles behind it. Soarin peeked his head in but saw no one.
"Heh.. Hee hee..."
Soarin pulled his head out and looked down the deserted hallway.
"Ha ha! Heh heh..."
Someone was in the bathroom laughing. And by the sounds of it, it was Rainbow Dash. Soarin sighed. She was drunk off her heels again.
Soarin knocked on the restroom door.
"Dash," he called, "Y' in there?"
The door slowly slid open. Soarin could just make out a magenta eye and rainbow flare mane.
"You okay?" asked Soarin.
The door suddenly swung wide open. Rainbow Dash was standing on her hind legs and leaning heavily on the door frame. She was dripping with sweat and she looked at Soarin in dreamy bedroom eyes.
"Heeey baby..." Rainbow Dash said in a slurred voice. She started trotting towards Soarin, swaying her hips seductively.
"Dash," said Soarin, "Let's get you to bed."
Rainbow Dash gave out a giggle-snort.
"Whaat?" she asked, "I... I didn't know you wanted to screw that badly!"
Rainbow Dash toppled over into Soarin's arms. She looked up into his face and laughed. He could smell the liquor in her breath.
"I love you. You know that?" asked Rainbow Dash. Her speech was still thick and slurred. "I think we should fuck..."
"Hey!" said Soarin pulling back.
He was taken aback. This attitude and language was extremely unbecoming for Rainbow Dash.
"You're drunk," whispered Soarin.
"I know..." replied Dash. But this time it wasn't in drunken mishmash. She looked up into his eyes. "I saw Pinkie Pie today..."
It must be the alcohol talking.
"Really?" asked Soarin, "What did she say?"
"I don't remember..." groaned Rainbow Dash, "But she made me feel so bad... I remember her... Telling me to laugh from the mirror!"
Dash had a wide smile on her face. Soarin started to grow worried.
"But she couldn't have been there..." said Rainbow, "She was in the mirror..."
"She can't do-" started Soarin.
"Yes she can," interrupted Rainbow Dash, "She was in my head... Her voice felt like needles in my eyes... So... So I laughed."
Dash started to giggle.
"And you know what else?" asked Rainbow Dash. Her eyes had a mad stare in them. "I smashed the mirror! Ha ha! With my head! Heh HA HA HA HA!!"
Through the open door, Soarin could see the reflective debris of the mirror on the bathroom floor. The shattered mirror was still hanging on the wall, a huge bloody splatter in the middle of it.
"BAH HAHAHAHAHA!" laughed Rainbow Dash, "I broke Pinkie Pie! Ha HA HA HA! Giggle at the ghosties, Soarin! Giggle at the ghosties!!"
Soarin, horrified at the madness of his girlfriend, looked down. On top of Dash's head was a large ugly gash. It was still dripping crimson and mixed grotesquely with Rainbow Dash's rainbow mane. Numerous deep cuts peppered her neck and face. Dash then abruptly turned her head away and emptied her stomach's contents.
"I gotta get you to the doctor!" yelled Soarin scooping up Dash I his forhooves. "Please, Celestia, don't let this be really happening.."
Spike entered Twilight's room. It was early morning and the sun had just risen.
"Yes, Spike?" answered Twilight. She was still in bed.
"Can you... uh... you know," mumbled Spike.
Twilight smiled sadley. This happened often. At first it was unsettling, but Twilight understood.
Twilight lifted her sheets and Spike crawled into bed next to her. Twilight felt Spike's rubbery spines pressed up against her belly as she held him. She heard a soft sobbing.
"Shh... It's alright," whispered Twilight, "I'm here. Big sis is here."
Spike held his tail like a child did a blanket. He was still devastated about Rarity. It struck Twilight as to how young Spike really was inside. Still a child. Spike sniffled and wiped his eyes.
"Can I go visit Rarity again?" he asked.
"You want to go alone?" asked Twilight.
"Yeah," replied Spike, "I just need to get my bag. I can go myself."
Spike had a pack on his back and was standing at the door.
"You ready?" asked Twilight.
"Uh huh!" said Spike.
"Say hi to Rarity for me," said Twilight.
Spike promised that he would give Rarity her good wishes and left through the door.
Twilight stood in the library alone. She didn't pay attention as to how long. It could have been few minutes or a few hours. Why hadn't she gone with Spike? She wanted to see Rarity too, but with Spike?.. No. Spike needed it more.
Knock Knock Knock
"The door's unlocked, Fluttershy!" called Twilight.
"Oh, okay," Fluttershy said as she entered the library, "How are you, Twilight?"
"Oh, fine I guess," mumbled Twilight, "I sent Spike off to Canterlot to visit Rarity."
"Uhm... I'm sorry but," interrupted Fluttershy, "Something happened."
"What?" asked Twilight.
"Well, I just found out this morning so-"
"Fluttershy. What happened?"
Soarin was sitting next to a stark white bed that was booked off to the public by even whiter curtains. He was in the hospital in Ponyville next to Rainbow Dash. She was sleeping peacefully on a hospital bed. There were thick bandages around her head and legs. Dash's bright colors contrasted vividly from the white sheets. Soarin was worried sick. Rainbow was drunk, cut up, delusional, and sick when he found her the previous night. She was obviously traumatized because she kept mentioning Pink-
"I came as soon as I heard,"
Soarin turned to see Twilight. She entered through the curtains and sat down next to him.
"Is she alright?" asked Twilight.
"Yeah, she's fine," answered Soarin. He didn't really know Twilight too well, but she was a friend of Rainbow Dash's, so he felt comfortable.
"What happened?" asked Twilight, "Was it the drinking?"
"Yep," sighed Soarin, "I dunno... It's just hard for her to stop I guess."
"It just breaks my heart to see her like this,"
Soaring unzipped his jumpsuit and pulled out a small hip flask. He unscrewed it and sipped. Twilight eyed it disapprovingly.
"Oh, sorry," said Soarin, "Force of habit... Y' know. Stress."
"And you're not going to share?" asked Twilight.
Twilight whisked the flask from Soarin's hooves and took a long sip. She handed it back.
"Everything's turned for the worst after Pinkie... you know..."
Soarin watched Twilight. She didn't seem right. Something seemed... Off.
"Is everything okay?" asked Soarin, "You look sick."
"It's just something I saw in my mirror the other day," answered Twilight. From the tone of her voice, Soarin could tell she had been holding it in. "I... I saw my friend Pinkie Pie in my mirror,"
Twilight didn't look at him. She just stared blankly at Rainbow Dash.
"She was... in my mirror," continued Twilight, "I don't know if I was delusional or desperate, but I SAW her..."
"You know," Soarin said, "Dash was talkin' about Pinkie Pie being in her mirror, too."
Twilight looked at him.
"She told me that Pinkie made her laugh," continued Soarin, "Dash broke the mirror and... well here she is."
"Wait," said Twilight, "Rainbow Dash saw Pinkie Pie?"
"I dunno," answered Soarin. He was shaking his head slowly. "I don't know if it was the alcohol or what. She just seemed really spooked."
"Applejack," said Twilight.
"Uh," stuttered Soarin, "What?"
"Applejack saw Pinkie Pie, too..." Twilight thought hard. "I gotta go."
"I hope Twilight isn't too worried..."
Fluttershy was trotting along the streets of Ponyville. She had just delivered the message about Rainbow Dash to Twilight and was making her way back home.
Despite the gloomy emotion that hung around the town, it was still a warm sunny day. The birds were out chirping and the bees were out buzzing. It almost seemed to mock Fluttershy and her friends. Fluttershy couldn't help but feel a slight bit elated, though. The animals that roamed the area seemed healthy and thriving. It was all thanks to Fluttershy and her care. No matter how sad she was, Fluttershy always found peace when she was with the birds and nature.
As the distance between Fluttershy and her cottage grew shorter, the landscape became more and more empty. The birds in the sky were suddenly gone, the sky grew grayer, and the sounds of nature were slowly drowned out. Naturally, Fluttershy grew worried. Had something scared the nature away? But then, Fluttershy tripped over something. She lifted herself from the ground and dusted herself off.
"Fluttershy, you klutz..." she mumbled. As she straightened her wings, Fluttershy smelled something in the air. She wrinkled her nose at the scent. It was something putrid and rotting. Slowly, Fluttershy turned around.
If a tree falls and nopony is around to hear it, does it make a sound? What if a pony screams and nopony is around, does she still make a noise?
Fluttershy screamed. Given, it probably wasn't a very loud scream. In front of her lay a dead chicken. Flies were buzzing around it and on its neck was a large grotesque bite. It was soaked in its own red and, in the midday heat, was starting to rot. Not paying any attention to the road ahead, Fluttershy had walked right into it.
Reluctantly, Fluttershy examined the corpse closer. The bite. Something wild must have done it.
"I have to get home..." said Fluttershy.
She wasn't thinking about her safety. She was thinking about her animals.
Fluttershy turned on her heels and sprinted home. The road ahead was littered with dark heaps, each swarming with a cloud of flies. Birds lay on the ground, their legs pointing upwards. Fish were floating belly up in the ponds. Fluttershy was crying silent tears, each dead animal leaving a mark in the back of her mind. The smell was excruciating. Fluttershy's stomach churned as she thought about her home.
"Nonononononono," she sobbed, "Please no..."
After what seemed like forever, Fluttershy reached her house. It was eerily quiet. No sounds, no movement. Nothing. Fluttershy crept up to the door and pressed her ear against it. There was... something in the house. Fluttershy opened the door and entered. The floor was moist and a sickly smell hung in the air.
Red. All she saw was red. The walls, the furniture, the floor, everything was red. All Fluttershy could do was whimper. She stood there with her eyes shut.
"Happy place..." she whispered to herself, "H-happy place...."
Fluttershy heard the gentle 'drip-drip' as whatever was coating the walls dribbled from the ceiling. She could smell a strong irony scent thick in the air. Fluttershy knew what it was. She just didn't want to believe it. She stood there for a very long time.
"Oh, hi, Fluttershy!"
Fluttershy almost opened her eyes. For a second, she had just heard Pinkie Pie.
"Glad you could drop by!" continued the voice, "I was gonna wait for you, but I got bored!"
"Pinkie?.." asked Fluttershy, "I-is that you?"
Fluttershy opened her eyes.
In front of her sat Pinkie Pie. Her eyes were black as pits and she was covered in blood. Pinkie just sat there and smiled.
"Surpriiiiiiiiiiiiiise!" she hissed.
"Wh-what-" gulped Fluttershy. She looked around. Again Fluttershy saw blood smeared across the walls and ceiling. There were piles and heaps of furry bodies littering the corners of the room.
"What did I do?" asked Pinkie Pie giggling, "Or what am I doing here?"
Fluttershy didn't answer.
"Do you remember why I died?" asked Pinkie.
"Y-yes..." squeaked Fluttershy. She couldn't run. The fear of Pinkie Pie's stare was petrifying.
"I'll bet you do..." growled Pinkie Pie, "I was trying to save Rarity, right? But you didn't believe me, right? And I DIED."
"Right?!” roared Pinkie, "All I did was give and sacrifice, and all you do is huddle up next to your dear ol' Twilight..."
"What? No, I-"
"SHUT UP!" bellowed Pinkie.
She swung her hoof sideways at Fluttershy. As Fluttershy recoiled, a lock of pink hair fell lightly into a small red puddle. Pinkie Pie held up her knife.
"See this?" she asked, "See this? This was in MY neck."
Pinkie stepped forward and pressed it against Fluttershy's throat.
"And how I'd love to stick it in yours..." she whispered, "But I'm not going to kill you. No. That wouldn't be as much fun."
Pinkie Pie pulled away. Fluttershy exhaled.
"As you can clearly see," said Pinkie Pie. She had her usual playful voice in her throat. "I did some redecorating! I repainted your walls and stuff!" Pinkie turned to see Fluttershy. Silent tears of horror and panic filled her eyes and started to stream down her face.
"And look!" cried Pinkie Pie, "I even prepared a snack!"
Pinkie pulled out a large silver platter. It was covered in an assortment of different meats. There were bloody slices, raw drum sticks, bloody heads, eyes, and tongues. Fluttershy vomited on the floor.
"Oh well!" chimed Pinkie Pie, "More for me!"
Fluttershy looked up just in time to see Pinkie pop a boney piece of flesh into her mouth and chew. The sound of crunching bone echoed throughout the house. Fluttershy heaved again.
"Mmmm!" sighed Pinkie as she chewed, "That's some good eats!"
"Stop.." Fluttershy whimpered, "Just stop..."
Fluttershy fell to the bloody floor and huddled up in a pile. She was trembling and her coat was slowly soaking up the cold blood from the floor.
"Why?" asked Pinkie Pie, "You didn't help me stop Rarity. Element of kindness. Puh." Pinkie spat on the floor.
Fluttershy wasn't listening. She was rocking back and forth on the floor, rolling around in the red.
"Hush now quiet now..."
"Aw geez don't start singing..." said Pinkie, "You're always so weak."
Pinkie Pie watched Fluttershy's trembling form. She smiled wickedly as she watched. Pinkie knew that Fluttershy only had her little pets as company. What if Pinkie had just taken them away? That would destroy Fluttershy. And it did.
"Do you remember your little rat called Angel?" asked Pinkie.
At the sound of his name, Fluttershy looked up at Pinkie Pie.
"You should have heard his crying when I bit him," said Pinkie Pie. Her eyelids were half-closed as if remembering a fond memory. "Oh, I saw it in his eyes. All he wanted was his mama!"
Pinkie Pie gave a high pitched squeak and scream then laughed. She laughed so hard she fell back into a large puddle of blood. Pinkie Pie rolled around in it and splashed Fluttershy.
"Oh I forgot to show you!" piped up Pinkie, "I wanted to show you my paintbrush I used!"
From somewhere behind her, Pinkie Pie pulled out a white rabbit's head and dangled it in front of Fluttershy's face.
"Welcome to Canterlot Asylum,"
Spike entered the lobby of the shiny asylum. He walked up to the front desk.
"Can I help you?" asked the pony at the desk.
"I'm here to visit," said Spike.
"Of course," said the pony, "Right this way."
She led Spike through a set of heavy double doors. They entered a hallway, each side of it holding a patient in a cell behind a glass wall. The two walked down the long hallway until they reached the correct cell.
"I'll leave you alone now," said the pony.
"Thanks," replied Spike.
Spike sat down heavily in front of the cell. He looked through the glass and sighed.
Twilight had just entered the hospital room. She saw Applejack lying on her stomach on a bed. There were bandages wrapped around both of her flanks, each smelling strongly of ointment.
"Howdy, Twi," replied Applejack.
"I was just visiting Rainbow Dash," said Twilight, "How are the burns?"
Applejack shifted her weight.
"Ah, they still hurt," answered Applejack, "But 'nough 'bout me, how's everyone else?"
"Dash is doing okay, but I'm still worried," said Twilight, "It was something she said to Soarin that’s got me worked up."
"What is it?" asked Applejack.
"He said Rainbow saw Pinkie Pie in her bathroom mirror!" said Twilight, "But that's impossible, right?"
Applejack suddenly looked fearful. She gulped loudly.
"Ah dunno, Twi," she said slowly, "Ah dunno if it's a coincidence or not, but Pinkie Pie did this to me."
Applejack tilted her head towards her burns.
"An' right before she did this," continued Applejack, "Ah saw her in mah bathroom mirror, too."
Twilight looked horrified. The fact that Pinkie showed up in her, Applejack's, and Rainbow Dash's mirrors weren't just fortuitous events. Pinkie was haunting them. One by one. Twilight thought hard. She mentally counted off. First it was Applejack then Rainbow Dash then..
"Fluttershy," whispered Twilight.
"Hm?" asked Applejack.
"Pinkie Pie's going after Fluttershy next," gasped Twilight, "I have to warn her!"
Twilight's horn suddenly started to glow. And with a final CRACK of magic, she disappeared from the hospital.
Twilight reappeared in front of Fluttershy's cottage. It was quiet and a rotting smell lingered in the air. From the cottage, Twilight could hear the loud screams and sobs of Fluttershy. She dashed to the door and smashed it open using her magic. The door became unhinged and flew across the room. It took a second for Twilight to register what was happening. Fluttershy was trembling in a pool of cold, coagulating blood. Pinkie Pie looked almost skeletal as she hovered over Fluttershy swinging a rabbit's head over her.
"Look!" piped up Pinkie, "Look at the expression on his face! Look! I said LOOK AT IT!"
"NO!" screamed Fluttershy, "STOP! MAKE IT STOP!"
Pinkie Pie looked up. Twilight was standing in the doorway.
"Oh, hi Twilight!" chirruped Pinkie Pie, "I wasn't going to meet you until later but this is fine, too!" Pinkie held up the platter of meat, "Cold cut?"
"L-leave her alone!" shouted Twilight. She grimaced as she heard her own voice shake.
"What?" asked Pinkie, "No way! This is way too much fu-"
Twilight sent a blast of magic towards Pinkie. It knocked Pinkie off her hooves and sent her into the wall behind her. She got up and looked at Twilight. Pinkie's black eyes were filled with rage.
Pinkie Pie roared and pounced on Twilight. In one hoof she grabbed Twilight's horn and pinned her to the floor. Pinkie's grip was so firm and painful; Twilight couldn't bring herself to cast even the smallest of spells. Pinkie Pie drew her knife and swung it downwards to Twilight. Twilight brought her hooves up and caught the knife by Pinkie's wrist. The blade was quivering an inch from Twilight's left eye.
"YOU'RE. NOT. GOING. TO. RUIN. MY. FUN." screamed Pinkie Pie through clenched teeth, "I’M GOING TO DESTROY ALL OF YOU."
The knife slowly drew closer to Twilight's face.
"N-no!" gasped Twilight. Her arms were starting to shake from fear and exertion.
"Yes!" yelled Pinkie, "And if I have to kill you to get to Rarity, I'll do it! And no one can stop me!" She gestured to Fluttershy's huddled form. "I've already killed Fluttershy's mind. She won't help you!"
Pinkie Pie pressed down harder on the knife. Twilight could feel its tip brush her eyelashes.
"And once I'm done with all of you," whispered Pinkie Pie, "I'll murder Rarity. Just like she did to me." Pinkie smiled. "And I promise."
"S-stop!" screamed Twilight. Her arms were going to give at any moment. Pinkie just stared down at her.
"I'll kill Rarity," she whispered, "Cross my heart..."
The knife grew closer to Twilight's eye.
"Hope to die..."
"Stick a cupcake in. My. EYE!"
At the last word, Pinkie Pie drove the knife's tip into Twilight's left eye. Twilight screamed and screamed as the knife slowly plunged deeper and deeper. It felt white hot. A thin line of blood sprayed out and spattered Pinkie's face. Twilight shrieked and tried to push Pinkie Pie away. Pinkie just smiled and pushed the knife slowly deeper into Twilight's head, savoring every second. Twilight couldn't take it. She was going to die. The pain was too much. Make it stop. Make it stop.
And suddenly, the pressure was gone. Weakly, Twilight opened her eyes. Her left side of vision was completely black. With her last working eye, Twilight looked around. She was still on her back and instead of Pinkie Pie standing over her there was Fluttershy. Twilight turned her head and saw Pinkie Pie getting up from the ground from the other side of the room. Fluttershy had come to Twilight's rescue and kicked Pinkie away.
Pinkie Pie got up. From what Twilight could still see from her one eye, Pinkie's jaw was bent and twisted at an odd angle.
"Leave. Her. ALONE." panted Fluttershy, "You can harm me, but if you ever touch Twilight..."
Pinkie Pie gurgled a wet giggle. She placed her forehooves on each side of her detached jaw, twisted, and with a sickening snap, moved it back to its proper place.
"Aw... How sweet..." cooed Pinkie Pie, "It's so cute I might throw up!"
Fluttershy just stood over Twilight. She wasn't going to leave Twilight alone. Twilight reached up and felt her face. It was moist and warm. Her hoof reached her punctured eye. At the touch, Twilight grunted in agony. She gnashed her teeth as she felt the warm blood trickle from her socket. The pain made it feel as if her head was bashed in with a hammer.
Still struggling with the agonizing pain, Twilight opened her eyes again. Fluttershy was in the distance. Pinkie Pie was nowhere to be seen.
"A whole day sober!"
Rainbow Dash was sitting in a chair next to Applejack's hospital bed.
"Heh," chuckled Applejack, "New record?"
Rainbow Dash raised her forearms and pumped them. She was still covered in bandages from the deep cuts she had received from the glass.
"Uh huh," she replied, "I beat you in recovery!"
"Hey," grunted Applejack, "Ah got pressed with a brandin' iron! You try an' trot around after something' like that!"
The two mares sat in silence. Rainbow Dash fidgeted in her chair and Applejack was still lying on her stomach in bed.
"Y'now," started Applejack, "You had me real worried when they brought you in."
Rainbow Dash looked up.
"Ah hated it when you started drinkin'," continued Applejack, "It broke mah heart whenever ah saw you passed out or so drunk you couldn't stand up straight."
A tear fell from Applejack's eye.
"Jus' promise me you won't do this again,"
"I promise," said Rainbow Dash quietly. She looked solemnly at Applejack. "I hate what Pinkie Pie is doing to us..."
"But can you blame her?" asked Applejack, "Is it really her fault?"
Again, the two sat in silence. In each mind, a torrent of unwelcome memories flooded back just for the briefest of seconds. The six friends didn't listen to Pinkie Pie. They shrugged her off as a joke. And because they did so, Pinkie Pie ended up being murdered. If that didn't call for revenge, what else did?
"LET ME GO!"
Both Rainbow Dash and Applejack looked up. Outside of Applejack's hospital room there was a raucous commotion.
"Please ma'am!" yelled a nurse's voice, "Stop resisting!"
"Twilight, please stop!" called Fluttershy.
"NO!" came Twilight's voice again, "LET ME GO! I HAVE TO SAVE HER!"
"What in the hay?..." said Applejack.
"Hang on," said Rainbow Dash getting up, "I'll see what's happening.
Rainbow Dash left the room and entered the hallway. She saw Twilight tied down to a hospital bed. She was wrapped up in a white straight jacket and there was a small clamp around her horn. Twilight was trashing against her restraints. It took three nurses and two male ponies to hold her down. Rainbow Dash saw a red patch over Twilight's left eye. Fluttershy was on the sidelines, watching hopelessly at Twilight's resistance. From what Rainbow Dash could see, Fluttershy was coated in blood.
"F-Fluttershy?" called Rainbow Dash.
Fluttershy looked over, galloped to Rainbow Dash, and held her tight.
"It was terrible..." moaned Fluttershy, "Pinkie Pie... She... Knife... Twilight's eye!..."
Rainbow Dash cringed. The smell of iron and dried blood was thick on Fluttershy.
"NO NO NO!" yelled Twilight again, "I NEED TO GET TO HER! RARITY! I NEED TO SAVE RARITY!"
A flower was standing in a small vase. It was healthy, fresh, and thriving. Surely it would brighten anyone's day. The flower, like all plants with age, started to wilt. Its petalled head drooped lower and lower, leaves falling off the stem and slowly losing color. The flower was now completely limp and lifeless. Age had taken its play and aged the poor flower.
Twilight stared at the dead flower on her bedside table. She was still wrapped in the strait jacket and the clamp was still attached to her shimmering horn.
"How did you do that?" Fluttershy was standing next to Twilight's bed watching, "Your magic should be blocked off."
"I can let some magic flow," said Twilight flatly, "I can't use it normally with this clamp on, but I can use a little bit."
"Did you kill the flower?" asked Fluttershy. She couldn't help it.
"Yes," replied Twilight, "It's just an aging spell I've been practicing."
"You’re not still angry about me not helping you out of the straight jacket, are you?" mumbled Fluttershy.
Twilight sighed and looked up at Fluttershy. Fluttershy saw the dark red stained bandage over Twilight's left eye. Twilight just stared at Fluttershy blankly.
"I'm just so worried about your safety," whispered Fluttershy. Twilight just listened. "I was so terrified when Pinkie Pie... you know... She reminded me of my guilt and told me I was weak. And I believed her."
Twilight still didn't say anything.
"She killed my animals, too," continued Fluttershy, "She splashed me and everything around with with..." She gulped. "...blood. She showed me how helpless I was."
"And I wanted to give up right then," Fluttershy continued not listening to Twilight, "I hated myself for letting Pinkie and my animals die. My animals were gone and I felt unimaginable guilt. I didn't want to survive. I had nothing to live for..."
Twilight looked away. It hurt to watch Fluttershy talk like this.
"But then I heard you scream,"
Twilight looked back. Tears were welling up in Fluttershy's eyes.
"I heard you scream," repeated Fluttershy, "And it felt like something snapped inside of my head. Like something clicked into place. I felt angry..."
Twilight just continued to stare at Fluttershy.
"Twilight..." said Fluttershy quietly, "I think I-"
Spike was in the doorway.
"Prince Charming, Prince Charming
My perfect Prince Charming,
From heart I had made you,
And hooves created,
To love like new
And with dreams elated.
We were to be
The happiest pair.
But then you left me
Alone to despair...
Oh, Why did you go?
You were to be mine.
But you tore out my heart,
And left me behind..."
Spike sighed. Rarity sang that song almost a million times. Even though Spike had heard it over and over again, it never lost its sadness. Spike sat in front of the glass wall that separated him from the white unicorn mare he so desperately missed. Spike sat cross-legged. He was so close to the window that it had started to fog.
"How are you, Rarity?" he asked the insane unicorn.
Rarity didn't answer back but Spike was used to it.
"Ponyville's been really dull without you," continued Spike, "Everyone misses you. Know I tell you this every time I come here, but I just want you to know. Something happened to Applejack and Rainbow Dash. They say that Pinkie Pie did it. But that can't be possible right? I mean, you did ki-"
Spike gulped. He didn't want to admit that his perfect Rarity committed such a vile crime.
He placed his hand against the cool glass.
"I miss you," he whispered, "A lot."
Spike was still a child. On the inside, he was young. Of course he didn't know anything about real love. Well, not yet anyway. Spike knew that he was far too young to know what real love was, but that didn't help the fact that he missed Rarity. She was gorgeous and nice. That was all he knew. In his mind, Spike was still the hero and Rarity his fair Lady.
"Hey, Rarity, look," Spike tapped lightly on the glass. Rarity was still in the far corner not showing any notice.
Spike pulled out a sweater from his pack. It was roughly sewn together with mismatched patches of color.
"Look what I made," said Spike, "I made it for you! Isn't it neat? I spent a lot of time on it!"
Rarity still just sat in the corner.
"When I made it, I was thinking 'What would Rarity do?'" said Spike, "This was my first sweater and I poked myself a few times with the needle. Didn't I do a good job?"
"Prince Charming, Prince Charming..."
"I had to use the stapler for the back part," continued Spike watching Rarity, "The fabric started to fray so I had to staple it together."
"From heart I had made you...
And hooves created..."
"Twilight kept trying to help me and everything," sighed Spike, "I told her I was fine on my own, but she kept going at it. She's such a mom..."
Spike bumped his forehead against the glass. Nothing. Nothing he did or said brought Rarity back to him. He didn't even have a real mother... Maybe that was why he obsessed over Rarity. He only had Twilight to look up to. She was a great pony and all, but she wasn't a mother. Perhaps Spike, missing the rudimentary care of a mother, craved the attention and affection from Rarity as well as Twilight. Twilight was like a big sister to Spike and maybe he wanted something more from Rarity.
A white unicorn was in the middle of a large white room. Her head swiveled from side to side, her eyes looking for something. Her violet mane swished along with her head. He should be here by now.
"Oh Rarity! My fair Rarity!"
Rarity flipped around. Behind her was a handsome stallion. His dark chestnut colored body was rippling with muscles and his mane was flowing as if in a strong breeze. His eyes twinkled like the stars in Princess Luna's skies. His grin was filled with perfect, pearly white teeth. It was Rarity's prince charming.
"My Prince! My Prince!" shouted Rarity. She gallivanted towards the stallion and threw herself into his forearms. She was finally going to be happy.
"I love you, my fair lady," whispered the nameless stallion, "I will be with you forever."
"Yes! Yes!" sighed Rarity, "Don't leave me. Ever..."
The stallion tightened his grip on Rarity and stared into her deep blue eyes.
"Oooh," cooed Rarity, "You handsome rouge!"
The stallion leaned in to kiss Rarity. Rarity puckered her lips and braced for the impact.
Suddenly, Rarity felt something warm and moist.
The stallion pushed Rarity away and looked down at his own chest. A gaping hole had appeared.
"What have you done?!" yelled the stallion, "You've killed me!"
"No! I didn't!" gasped Rarity.
The hole grew larger and larger. It tore itself deeper and wider across the stallion's chest and belly. Blood poured out along with his glistening entrails. Rarity shrieked. She screamed and screamed as she watched the stallion before her being torn apart. Pieces of him lay here and there still oozing red filth. Rarity looked around desperately. In the distance, she could see a needle and thread.
"Hang on my Prince!" she yelled, "I'll save you!"
She grabbed the string and needle and headed back to the bloody mass. But when she turned around to look, her Prince was gone. The white landscape lay pristine and Rarity was again alone in it.
"Oh Rarity! My love!"
Rarity twisted her head around.
There in the distance was a jet black stallion. His hair was sleek and his eyes were sharp. He was, in a sense, charming and stylish. His brave face and straight jaw were perfect. He winked at Rarity.
"My Prince? Oh it’s you!" cried Rarity, "It's really you!"
The stallion grabbed Rarity and laid her on her back. He looked into her eyes and smiled.
"Run away with me," he whispered, "I promise I'll love you forever..."
"Take me..." sighed Rarity.
She looked up and opened her mouth to kiss him. Rarity sputtered as a warm salty mess flooded her mouth. Blood was pouring from the colt's eyes. Rarity gagged and coughed the red out of her mouth.
"Why?!" cried the stallion, "Why did you do this to me?!"
He keeled over and flailed his limbs. A huge amount of crimson shot out of his mouth. He lay dead and unmoving.
Rarity sat over the body and wept. She was finally going to be happy but the stallion, the Prince of her dreams, was again stolen from her. Why? Why did it keep happening? Why was it that every time Rarity found happiness, it was torn away from her? Why was it that-
"Rarity! My fair maiden!"
"Oh, my Prince!"
"...Charming, Prince Charming,
My perfect Prince Charming..."
Rarity was still in the farthest corner of her cell from the window. She was thin, malnourished (she hadn't eaten much...), looked a good five years older, and her color was somewhat faded. Her eyes were half closed and had a glazed look over them. Her breaths were very shallow and she looked weary.
"From heart I had made you,
And with hooves created..."
"Please stop singing that song," said Spike. He was still sitting outside the window. "Do something else... Be happy..."
Tears welled up once more in Spike's eyes as Rarity continued to ignore him and sing weakly.
"Stop. Please!" he yelled, "You have to forget about it all. You have to forget about Pinkie Pie. You just gotta.... Forget about- Pinkie Pie?"
From the reflective surface of the glass wall, Spike saw the dim figure of the pink party pony.
Spike yelped and jumped away.
"P-pinkie Pie?!" sputtered Spike, "How did you get in there?"
"You mean in the glass?" asked Pinkie Pie playfully. She stared at him through her black and bleeding eyes. Her smile was crooked and her head was tilted ever so slightly. Spike could feel a creeping shiver run up his spines.
"B-but..." said Spike, "You're supposed to be-"
"Dead?!”" shrieked Pinkie Pie. Spike flinched in terror. Pinkie was absolutely frightening. "And why, Spike, do you think I'm DEAD?!"
Spike gulped. He was petrified in fear. Pinkie slammed her head into the glass and cracked it. The glass was shattered but not broken through.
"I asked you a question!" yelled Pinkie Pie still trapped inside the glass. Spike took a deep breath and stood his ground. He walked up to the cracked glass.
"You don't scare me!" he said boldly, "I'm not a kid-"
Pinkie pulled out her knife and rammed it into the glass wall. Its tip jutted out to the other side. Pinkie Pie bared her teeth and watched Spike balefully.
"Don’t test me..."
"It's because of Rarity!" said Spike very quickly.
"That's right!" piped up Pinkie Pie, "She murdered me! And guess what?" She pressed her face up against the glass wall. The broken glass cut into her face but she didn't seem to care.
"Wh-what?..." asked Spike.
"What's best served up icy cold?" asked Pinkie Pie. She pulled a shard of glass out of her eye.
Spike gulped. He knew the answer but didn't want to say it.
"Is... it ice-cream?" he asked hopefully.
Pinkie Pie opened her mouth to answer, closed it, thought hard, then opened it again, and then closed it.
"You're right!" Pinkie Pie said, "Ice cream IS best served cold! What else?"
"Yea- wait..." said Pinkie Pie, "You know what's better?"
Pinkie Pie turned around to face Rarity.
"Wh- what are you doing?!" shouted Spike.
Pinkie Pie didn't pay any attention to Spike. She slowly approached Rarity. Rarity was still slumped in her corner not taking any notice in Pinkie Pie.
"Hey!" shouted Spike, "Stay away from her!" He ran up to the glass wall and banged his fists against it. He immediately regretted this however because the broken glass sank deep into his hands.
"You're aaaaall mine..." cooed Pinkie Pie.
She stood up on her hind legs and brought her knife point down onto the side of her stomach. Spike closed his eyes as Pinkie Pie made a swift sideways movement with her knife. Spike was expecting a squeltch-ing noise of dropping intestines and blood but instead he heard a clang of metal on floor. He was compelled to look. Pinkie Pie picked up a hack saw from the floor. It was covered in blood and mess. Spike realized with sickening understanding that Pinkie Pie kept the saw in her own stomach. She lifted the saw up to her mouth and licked it.
"Remember this?" Pinkie asked Rarity, "Remember this thing you used to cut ponies apart with?"
"Stay away from her!" screamed Spike.
Rarity didn't even look up as Pinkie Pie approached her. Pinkie Pie was going to have her revenge. She was going to take her time. She was going to drag it out as long as she possibly could. She was going to have fun. Pinkie Pie lunged forward and tackled Rarity. Pinkie held her roughly in a headlock. Rarity wasn't even resisting. She wasn't even paying attention.
"We can't have you fighting back now, can we?" giggled Pinkie Pie, "Let’s start with this!"
Spike could only watch in horror as Pinkie Pie had her way with the white unicorn. She brought the hack saw down onto the base of Rarity's horn. Pinkie Pie gave a last taunting look to Spike before she went to work. Rarity's head was tightly clamped under Pinkie Pie's forearm. Slowly, Pinkie started to saw off Rarity's horn.
Again, Spike shut his eyes and braced himself for the screams of pain that would issue from Rarity. But no sound came. The only thing he heard was a rough sawing noise and the maniacal cackle from Pinkie Pie.
Only mere seconds later, the sawing stopped. But the laughter continued. Spike looked back up and gasped. Pinkie Pie was still holding Rarity by the head. Rarity still had the defeated, dead look in her eyes and seemed not to notice that her horn was missing. A small trickle of blood oozed from the flat stub where her horn used to be. Pinkie Pie laughed as she threw the saw aside and picked up the horn from the floor.
"Look!" she screamed, "It's her horn! She's nothing but a useless, old, ugly mule!" Pinkie lifted the horn up to her forehead and mimicked Rarity. "Oh lookit me! I'm Rarity! I'm so perfect! I can't find a boyfriend so I have to make one! Gosh I was so upset when I failed that I went and killed my best friend Pinkie Pie!"
Spike still hadn't said anything. His eyes were wide with terror and his heart seemed to have lodged itself in his throat.
"Now that you're as good as dead," whispered Pinkie Pie to Rarity in her arms, "I can finally finish you off... I can finally kill you.. I can finally be at rest..."
"Prince Charming, Price Charming..."
Again, Pinkie Pie looked up at Spike. She then eyed the bloody horn in her hoof. Pinkie smiled.
"Here Spikey!" chortled Pinkie Pie, "Have a souvenir!"
She raised her hoof and chucked Rarity's horn at the glass wall. It shattered and glass shards showered down on Spike. He covered his head and shut his eyes as he felt the boney horn hit his temple. As the last of the glass fell to the floor, Spike looked up. Pinkie Pie and Rarity were both gone.
The shock was wearing off. Panic was finally settling in and Spike's breathing quickened. His heart beat adrenaline through his body so hard it started to hurt. He had to rescue Rarity. That was the only thing on his mind. He had to do something. He had to grow up.
Spike picked up the bloody horn from the floor.
"I need to find Twilight!"
Twilight sat up straight in her bed. Spike ran across the hospital room, passed Fluttershy without even a hello, and slumped over onto his knees. He was out of breath and sweaty.
"Did you run all the way from Canterlot?!" asked Twilight.
Spike huffed and gasped a few times more. He had a burning stitch in his side.
"Tw-Twilight..." panted Spike, "Rarity... She... Pinkie Pie... Saw... With the horn..." Spike finally looked up but almost dropped again. "Twilight... What happened to your eye?!"
"Don't worry about this..." said Twilight, "What did you say about Rarity?"
"Why are you in a strait jacket?" asked Spike.
"Enough about me!" shouted Twilight, "What. Happened. To. Rarity?"
"She was ponynapped by Pinkie Pie!" said Spike raising his arms, "Wasn't she supposed to be dead?! Twilight, what's going on here?"
Twilight eyed the white horn in Spike's hand.
"Rarity's horn?" said Spike, "Yeah. Pinkie Pie cut it off! Is she haunting us? Did she do that to your eye? We need to save Rarity!"
Panic was clearly still running rampant through Spike's mind. He was flailing his arms as he spoke, his eyes were contracted in fear, and he was staring at Twilight's eye patch. Spike didn't even notice Fluttershy in the room. She was still matted with dried blood.
"What did Pinkie Pie say she was going to do with Rarity?" asked Twilight. She already knew.
"She said..." started Spike, "She was going to kill her!"
Fluttershy clapped her hooves to her mouth.
"We have to rescue her," said Twilight. She struggled against her jacket. "Spike, do you know where she took Rarity?"
"N-no..." answered Spike. Tears were starting to appear in the corners of his eyes. "I have no idea..."
Twilight fidgeted in worry. They had no clue where Pinkie Pie was. Another friend was about to be stolen from them. Twilight looked again to Spike. He was watching her, waiting for her plan of action and completely helpless. Twilight looked at the red stained horn in Spike's hand. Then to Spike's nose. Twilight was suddenly struck with an idea. It was farfetched, but it might work. Dragon senses were extremely strong.
"Spike," said Twilight finally, "Can you smell Rarity?"
"What?" said Spike. He sniffed the air around him loudly. "No, why?"
"Dragons' sense of smell are extremely sensitive," explained Twilight, "Along with their eyesight, dragons have the best senses."
"I don't think I get those until I become an adult..." sighed Spike. He dropped to the floor and sat there. "And that doesn't happen for a few decades... Maybe even hundreds of years..."
Twilight grunted in frustration. All seemed lost. She looked down to Spike who was sitting in the floor weeping. Fluttershy was next to him trying but failing to comfort him. Twilight could feel tears welling up in her eyes as well. Not even the withered flower next to her bedside helped....
Twilight's ears perked up.
That was it. The flower...
"Spike!" shouted Twilight. Spike looked up, tears still staining his face. "What are you willing to give to find Rarity?"
Spike sniffed and stood up as tall as he could. He still grasped the horn in his hand.
"Good," she said, "I've got a plan but you have to cut me loose. Your claws are sharp enough, right?"
"Yeah!" answered Spike.
"Well, then hurry!"
But before Spike could take a step towards Twilight, Fluttershy stepped in front of him.
"What?" asked Twilight and Spike in unison.
"I said 'No'," repeated Fluttershy.
"But have to go now!" said Twilight, "We need to save Rari-"
"I don't care," said Fluttershy flatly. She didn't look away from Spike. "I need to keep you safe. I can't risk you getting hurt again."
"Please Fluttershy..." pleaded Spike.
"No!" screamed Fluttershy childishly, "I won't! I won't!"
"I NEED TO PROTECT WHAT I CARE FOR!!" bellowed Fluttershy. She had lost too much to risk any more.
Spike glared at Fluttershy. He took a step forward and was almost nose to nose with her.
"Me too." said Spike. He stared straight into Fluttershy's eyes. He didn't back down. He was going to risk everything. He was going to be the hero.
Fluttershy stared back. Spike could see that the once present kindness and compassion in Fluttershy's eyes were all but dead. It seemed like an eternity before Fluttershy finally backed down. She still glared at Spike.
"Fine," she said quietly, "But if anything happens to Twilight..."
"Then I'll take responsibility," said Spike.
Fluttershy moved to the side and let Spike pass. Spike reached up and started to scratch at Twilight's bindings. After a minute, Twilight was cut free. Spike pulled the clamp off her horn and threw it aside. Twilight felt the rush of magic as it returned to her.
"So what's the plan?" he asked.
Twilight cleared her throat. This plan was risky and was a last shot. She looked down at Spike with her one eye. He had a set look of determination on his face.
"Spike," said Twilight, "Do you remember that aging spell I've been practicing?"
Spike looked to Twilight's bedside table and saw the withered flower.
"Yeah," he answered.
"You said that you'd be able to fine tune your nose if you were an adult right?"
"Yeah," repeated Spike, "You're going to age me?"
"Yes," said Twilight. She sounded uncomfortable. "But there is a risk..."
"What is it?" asked Spike.
"If something goes wrong," said Twilight slowly, "I might age to too much and kill you. I might accidentally reduce you to a pile of dust."
Spike looked again to the withered flower.
"I don't care," he replied flatly, "If it's a chance at saving Rarity, I'll take it."
Twilight thought he was being reckless. But she couldn't help but feel proud of him. Spike knew what he was getting into.
"You'll lose the rest of your childhood," warned Twilight, "You won't make any more happy memories or live care free. You'll skip all the way to an adult. Are you willing to give that up?"
"I'll give up more than that if I have to!" piped up Spike.
"Alright," said Twilight finally, "Here we go... I'll miss my number one assistant."
Spike closed his eyes and took a deep breath.
"Was that Spike?"
Applejack and Rainbow Dash both sat in the hospital room together. They were talking when they noticed a purple and green blur streak past the door.
"Huh. Ah think it was!" responded Applejack. She was still lying in her bed. "Boy howdy, that critter can run fast."
"What is he doing here?" asked Rainbow Dash, "I thought he was in Canterlot visiting... you know..."
Applejack sighed. She knew only too well who was in Canterlot that Spike any interest in seeing.
"Let's not talk about that, sugar cube," mumbled Applejack, "We've only started to heal. Ah don't want to go back to that."
"But what about..." Rainbow Dash looked from side to side making sure there were no mirrors anywhere, "Pinkie Pie?"
Applejack hissed and waved her hoof at Rainbow Dash.
"Not so loud!" whispered Applejack, "Last thing we want is for her t' come back!"
"But what about Rarity?" continued Dash, "She's still out there. Pinkie might still go after her!"
"She's in a safe place," assured Applejack, "She's safe from Pinkie Pie..." Applejack looked down. "And from herself."
Suddenly, there was yelling in the next room. Both mares looked to the wall.
"What in tarnation?"
"Was that Fluttershy?" asked Rainbow Dash taken aback, "Was that Fluttershy yelling?"
"Well whatever it is," said Applejack still staring intently into the wall, "Ah think it’s over. Twilight was pretty banged up."
"You mean her eye?"
Applejack nodded solemnly.
"She was attacked like the rest of us," said Applejack, "An' by the looks of it, she's gone a bit crazy too... Y' heard her hollerin’ about Rarity earlier, right?"
"B-but you said it yourself," said Rainbow Dash, "She's safe right? We've seen the last of Pinkie, right?"
Applejack didn't respond.
"AJ?" whispered Dash, "Applejack?"
She still didn't say anything.
And suddenly there was a crash. Applejack and Rainbow Dash both looked up. The commotion was issuing again from Twilight's room. They heard a shriek from Fluttershy and a shout of joy from Twilight. There was a sound of scraping talons on the wooden floor. Applejack and Dash both sat watching the wall in shock. Something large and heavy had bumped into the wall. A huge roar echoed through the hospital.
"What the hell?..."
Rainbow Dash bolted up from her chair and ran to the door. She poked her head out. All the way down the long hallway ponies stuck out their heads trying to see what had caused the noise. Many of them were curious but many more wore terrified looks on their faces.
Just as Dash was about to pull her head back inside the room the door that belonged to Twilight's room burst open. As Rainbow Dash watched, stunned in disbelief, a serpentine head and neck slithered out of the doorway. A dragon. Every time it took a breath, steam billowed from its nostrils. Its spines were scraping the ceiling, gouging long scratches into it. It looked around with its fiery green eyes filled with rage and hunger.
The ponies who were looking out of their doorways screamed in terror. They ran back into their rooms and locked their doors. Nurses ran into the hallway to see what was going on but, at the sight of the dragon, shrieked and galloped away. Only Rainbow Dash was left in the hallway watching the dragon. It let out another almighty roar. It was a high pitch yowl mixed with a roar of a monster. The sound reverberated off the walls of the hallway and shattered the glass in the windows. Rainbow Dash dropped to the floor and shut her ears tight. The roar still echoed around in her head, disorientating her.
"Rainbow Dash!" cried Applejack from her bed, "What was that?! What's going on?!"
The dragon twisted its head towards the source of Applejack's yelling. It gave a grunting snort of satisfaction and bared its teeth. Dash could see its pearly white, diamond hard fangs.
"Dragon!" shrieked Rainbow Dash.
The dragon tore its own body out of Twilight's room and charged towards Applejack's. Its claws sank themselves in and out of the floor as it moved. Each step made the whole hospital shake. Rainbow Dash bolted inside the room and locked the door. But soon after, a claw rammed itself through the door. Both Applejack and Rainbow Dash ducked under their hooves and screamed in fear.
Applejack opened her eyes. The dragon slowly made its way into her room. It was four ponies tall and three ponies wide. Its leathery scaled wings made the elephantine dragon seem even huger. Only about half of the dragon was actually inside the room. The other half, along with its tail, was still sitting outside in the hallway. The dragon's breath way swelteringly hot as it filled the room. Applejack could feel each breath reverberate throughout the entire room. The dragon looked down at Applejack.
She stared back. Applejack couldn't do anything. Her hind legs still refused to move because of the burns. She was on the white bed right in front of the dragon. She was sitting there like a tasty treat on a silver platter waiting to be snatched up and swallowed whole by the monster. Applejack took one last moment to take in the dragon's menacing appearance. Its snake-like head and neck were swaying from side to side, its spines and claws were razor sharp, its scales were shimmering in the dim light, and its eyes were thin vertical green slits.
Applejack gasped. She noticed the dark shade of purple on the dragon's scales and recognized the inky black green of the spines. The dragon opened his mouth.
"Hi," the dragon said in a deep, rumbling, and booming voice. There was something oddly familiar about it. It sounded... young...
"S-Spike?..." whispered Applejack. The dragon nodded slowly. "Wh-what happened to you?"
Rainbow Dash crawled out from under Applejack's bed. She looked up and yelled.
"No! Wait!" boomed the dragon, "It's me! Spike!"
Rainbow Dash stood up. She was as big as Spike's head. As Dash goggled at Spike, Twilight ran around the corner and into Applejack's room. She was closely followed by Fluttershy.
"Spike!" yelled Twilight, "You're destroying the hospital!"
"I can't help it!" said Spike.
He really couldn't. He felt like a bison in a China shop.
"Grab AJ! We have to go now!"
"Y'know, they say you shouldn't drink bleach. I dunno why they say that, it tastes pretty good!"
Somewhere in the depths of the EverFree forest was a certain party pony. She was going to have a party. There was no doubt about it. She only had one guest though, and she was tied to a tree.
Pinkie Pie held a jug of bleach up to Rarity's face. Rarity continued to stare into space singing her little song.
"Prince charming, prince charming..."
"Ugh, quit singing that song!" yelled Pinkie Pie, "Don't you do anything else?!"
She lifted the bleach and dumped it on to Rarity's mane. It dripped onto her stump on her forehead. Normally it would burn but Rarity took no notice to it.
"There!" chirruped Pinkie Pie, "All done!"
Pinkie Pie lifted a small mirror up to Rarity.
"Your mane should be niiiice and damaged now!" said Pinkie, "But now, I'm gonna kill you! Isn't that great?"
Rarity didn't respond.
"You're no fun..." whispered Pinkie Pie, "You're no fun at all! Why won't you scream?! Why won't you scream like the others?! Why? WHY?!"
"Maybe it's because you don't want this..."
Pinkie Pie gasped and whirled around.
"Whose there?!" she screamed, "I'll cut you!"
Pinkie Pie looked down to the mirror in her hoof. She looked into it. She saw herself. Her old self.
"Is this really what you want?" asked her reflection, "Will this really make you happy?"
"Yes! YES!" cried Pinkie Pie, "I want this. I need this!"
"But you're the element of laughter," said her reflection, "This isn't very funny..."
"SHUT UP!" screamed Pinkie at the mirror, "You don't know me! This is funny! Ha ha ha! See? I'm laughing! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!"
Her reflection just shook her head in disappointment.
"Don't think that you're better than me!" growled Pinkie, "Don’t think that you know better! I know what I'm doing and I know what I want!"
Pinkie Pie ran over to Rarity and glared into her eyes.
"I want your blood," whispered Pinkie Pie, "I want your blood in payment for the loss of mine. I'm dead because of you. I'll NEVER forgive you..."
Ponies were terrified. They ran around Ponyville trying to find cover and safety. They feared for their lives and for the lives of others. A dragon was in the town.
The hospital was nearly destroyed. The entrance was demolished and a clear line of destruction trailed from the entrance to a single room. A huge dark purple dragon was sitting outside the entrance.
"Okay we have to hurry," called Twilight, "We need to find Rarity now."
"Right," said everyone else.
Twilight reached into her bag and pulled out a white horn. She dropped it in front of Spike. Twilight grimaced at the sight of it.
Spike looked at the tiny horn on the ground in front of him. Untrained emotions tore through his mind. First it was anger, then hate, then remorse, then regret. Spike felt frustrated. Too much seemed to be happening at once. Everything seemed ten times more difficult to understand.
"Spike!" yelled Twilight. Spike blinked and looked down at her. He saw her eye patch. "Sniff the horn! Smell out Rarity! It's our only chance."
Spike nodded. He bent down and inhaled the scent that hovered around the bloody white horn. He closed his eyes. He could almost see the different scents. He easily recognized Twilight's aroma along with his own. He took a deeper breath and kept his eyes shut. Spike could smell Pinkie Pie. He hated this scent. He took another breath.
"Got it," whispered Spike.
He lifted his head and inhaled deeply. However faint the scent was, Spike was still able to catch Rarity's smell. Like a hound dog, his nose homed in.
"The forest," said Spike slowly, "There." he lifted a clawed finger and pointed.
"Alright," said Twilight, "We know where to go. Let's move."
Everypony nodded. Spike bent down so that the ponies could get onto his back. Twilight rushed towards Spike but abruptly ran into his side. She toppled over and groaned. Fluttershy squeaked.
"Are you okay?" asked Rainbow Dash.
Twilight got up and rubbed her eye patch.
"You looked a lot farther away..." she murmured to Spike, "Depth perception..."
The ponies climbed onto Spike's back. All except for Applejack.
"Ah can't move!" cried Applejack, "How're we gonna- whoa!"
Spike lifted a clawed hand and picked up Applejack from around the waist.
"Oh nelly," muttered Applejack, "Be gentle..."
Spike held Applejack gingerly around the middle with both hands. The last thing he wanted to do was crush her. Spike looked over his shoulder. He saw Twilight and Fluttershy clinging to his spines. Rainbow Dash on the other hand stretched her wings and looked ready to take off. Spike also unfolded his wings.
"Have you ever flown before?" asked Applejack, "You know what you're doing, right?"
Spike swallowed hard.
And with a great leap, Spike launched himself into the air. The ponies around him screamed and yelled in surprise. Applejack shut her eyes and held on tightly to Spike's fingers. At first, Spike fell and tumbled through the air. He watched Dash closely as she flew next to him and mimicked her wings' movements. It wasn't too bad. It was actually kind of fun! Wait. I'm an adult. I shouldn't be having fun.
Spike had to save Rarity.
"What are you waiting for?"
Pinkie Pie was pacing around the tree. She was gnashing her teeth and glared at Rarity.
"Do it. You said it was what you wanted."
"SHUTUPSHUTUPSHUTUP!" screamed Pinkie Pie.
Again she picked up the mirror in her hooves. Her own reflection stared back. It looked bored and disappointed.
"I thought this was what you wanted?" said the reflection, "Don't you want to stab her?"
"Yes!" cried Pinkie Pie.
"Then do it," said the reflection, "Do it."
"Stop telling me what to do!" shrieked Pinkie Pie.
"You can't do it can you?" asked the reflection, "You're weak. You know you can't take a life. I know you have some good in you."
Pinkie Pie giggled. It grew louder and louder and into a cackle. She shrieked with laughter.
"Me? Good?!" shouted Pinkie Pie into the mirror, "Let's see, I've burned Applejack, scarred Rainbow Dash with broken glass and turned her into a drunk, I slaughtered all of Fluttershy's animals, I poked out Twilight's eye, and I sawed off Rarity's horn!" Pinkie Pie stared intently into the mirror. "Does that seem like a good pony?! I don't feel regret! My eyes don't see sympathy!"
"Don't feel regret?" asked the reflection, "I can feel just a little part of the party pony we both used to know."
Pinkie froze in place.
"Where did she go?" asked the reflection, "Where did she go, Pinkie Pie?"
"Shut up..." whispered Pinkie.
"She's hiding from the ghosties,"
"She's hiding from the spookies,"
"She's hiding from you."
Pinkie Pie lifted the mirror up into the air and chucked it away from her. The mirror struck a tree and shattered. Her dead black eyes stared down at the shards. She knew what she wanted. Pinkie knew what she had to do.
Pinkie Pie looked around. Voices seemed to be echoing around her. She looked down to the broken shards of glass on the ground. Each had a small reflection of Pinkie Pie. Each was whispering.
"Haven't you done enough?..."
Pinkie Pie screamed. She ran up to the shards of glass. With all of the frustration and anger she could muster, Pinkie Pie stomped on the bits of mirrors. In a frenzy, she ground the shards into the dirt. She didn't care if the glass cut her hooves or that the voices didn't stop.
"Prince Charming, Prince Charming..."
"SHUT UP!" screamed Pinkie Pie.
She clasped her head in between her hooves and shut her eyes. The voices were in her head, boring into her brain like tight, sharp, screws. Rarity's mindless singling was like nails on a chalkboard. Pinkie had to end it. Pinkie had to end Rarity. Only then would she find peace.
But then she heard it. A fiery roar and a flapping of large wings. Pinkie Pie looked up and saw a dragon.
"Pinkie Pie!" roared the dragon. How did it know her name?
The dragon landed with a tremendous crash. It tore through the trees and branches like they were tissue paper. It was in the clearing staring down Pinkie Pie.
"Can you come back later?" asked Pinkie, "I'm kinda in the middle of something."
"I'm here for her," rumbled the dragon. He pointed at Rarity.
"But I was gonna kill her!" whined Pinkie Pie, "She's my prey!"
"I'm here to save her," growled the dragon. Smoke billowed from his nostrils.
"Save her?..." asked Pinkie Pie. She tilted her head to the side and stared at the purple dragon. "Spike?"
"Yes, Pinkie Pie,"
Twilight jumped down from Spike's back. Pinkie Pie could clearly see the bloody eye patch covering Twilight's left socket.
"What is this?" asked Pinkie Pie scathingly, "A buncha party poopers?"
"We're here for Rarity,"
Rainbow Dash walked out from behind the gargantuan dragon that was Spike. Pinkie could see the scars on her face and neck. Those would stay with Rainbow Dash forever.
"You too?" spat Pinkie.
Pinkie Pie watched as Spike placed Applejack on the forest floor. Her flanks were still bandaged up but Pinkie could still see the pain in Applejack's eyes.
"You killed my animals..."
Fluttershy stood behind Twilight. Pinkie Pie couldn't remember the last time Fluttershy had that much malice in her voice. Her coat was still matted in dark red blood.
"Disgusting..." murmured Pinkie Pie. She spat on the floor.
"Pinkie Pie, please," whispered Twilight, "You don't want to do this.."
"Who are you to tell me what I want and don't want?!" yelled Pinkie Pie. She lifted her knife up to Rarity's neck. Spike tensed up and growled.
"Just stop..." said Rainbow Dash.
"I CAN'T!" screamed Pinkie, "I can't stop! You know why? Do you know why?! Because you didn't listen to me, I ended up being murdered by this!"
Pinkie pressed the blade closer to Rarity's neck. Twilight could see a small trickle of blood drop from Rarity's neck.
"She. Is. Mine." said Pinkie Pie.
She turned to face Rarity. Pinkie took the knife in both hooves and brought it above her head. She stared down at Rarity.
"Prince Charming, Prince Charming..."
Pinkie Pie let out a scream of joy.
"No!" Twilight bounded forwards but was held back. Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash had both tackled her.
Before Twilight could hit the ground, Spike leapt forward. His huge frame was carried swiftly by his strong legs. In three strides, Spike reached Pinkie Pie. He swatted her to the side. With a grimacing CRACK, Pinkie flew through the air and hit a tree trunk. She gave a scream of pain and tried to lift herself up. Spike was watching her.
She tried to kill Rarity.
She tried to kill Rarity.
She tried to kill Rarity.
Spike reared up onto his hind legs. He took a great breath. Twilight and Pinkie both knew what was coming.
In all her life, Twilight always thought Spike's little puff of green sparks was cute. It was a small jet of flame that wouldn't burn a fly. It matched his small and gentle personality perfectly.
"No! Spike!" screamed Twilight. She was still pinned down by Fluttershy and Dash. She covered her head and shielded her eyes.
Spike breathed a great jet of fiery inferno. It was not its usual harmless green but was a white hot stream of fire. The sand around the flames turned to glass instantly and the trees surrounding it burst into flames. Twilight opened her eyes and saw the hellfire. She was terrified. She never thought Spike to be capable of such destruction. The fire struck Pinkie Pie.
Rarity was again in her white landscape. There was nothing here and nothing there. Rarity was looking for her mate. Her husband. Her prince.
She felt a small tug on her tail. Rarity jumped and turned her head to look. Spike the baby dragon was behind her.
"Spike!" she cried, "You startled me!"
"Oh, sorry..." mumbled Spike.
"I'm sorry to be so short with you," said Rarity, "But I'm busy right now."
"Go away, Spike!" said Rarity, "I'm looking for him! I'm looking for my prince!"
"But Rarity..." sighed Spike.
"But what?" snapped Rarity, "What is it?"
"He's never going to come..." said Spike.
Rarity gasped and looked offended.
"How dare you!" she cried, "I will wait here all my life if I have to, thank you very much."
The baby dragon sighed in frustration.
"But where is 'here' anyway?" asked Spike.
"Here is..." Rarity didn't finish her sentence. She thought. Where was here? Where was she really? How long had she been here? And most importantly, where was her prince?
"Spike," said Rarity, "Where am I?"
"You're trapped," said Spike, "You're trapped looking for your 'prince'. You have to stop waiting for him."
"But if I don't," whimpered Rarity, "I'll never find my true love! I'll never find my prince charming!"
"I can be your prince," said Spike. He looked up at Rarity hopefully.
"Oh Spike..." sighed Rarity, "You're much too young... And you're so... childish..."
"Just give me a chance," pleaded Spike, "Just let me try and be your prince."
"Spike..." Rarity's heart throbbed.
"Just open your eyes, Rarity..."
Rarity's eyes fluttered. The first thing she noticed was an overwhelming warmth surrounding her. Rarity felt as if she had woken up from a very troubled sleep. She was lying in something rough but extremely warm. There was a pounding pain on her forehead. Rarity groaned. The last thing she remembered seeing was...
"Spike?..." mumbled Rarity. She rubbed her eyes with her hooves.
"I'm here Rarity,"
Rarity froze. He didn't hear the familiar young voice of the baby dragon. Instead, she heard a booming growl next to her ear. Rarity lowered her hooves and looked up. She gasped. Rarity was lying in a dragon's arms. She could feel his chest rising and reverberating with every breath he took. Rarity looked up into the dragon's eyes. They were familiar and friendly. Rarity recognized them immediately.
"S-spike?!" gasped Rarity. Spike nodded slowly. "Wh-what happened to you?"
"I grew up," whispered Spike.
Rarity felt his warm breath on her face. She continued to stare up at the fully grown dragon. The thought of her prince was momentarily pushed out of her mind. This was Spike. All grown up and mature. His diamond hard scales shimmered in the sunlight and his spines seemed to glow.
"Oh, Spike..." sighed Rarity, "When did you... How long have I..."
Spike held Rarity tight. He was finally happy. He had her back. She wasn't mad and mumbling, but aware and with him.
"I would do anything for you, my lady," said Spike.
Rarity felt her heart flutter. Spike wasn't a child any more. And the longer Rarity stared up at Spike, the haunting thoughts of her prince charming and her attic slowly started to creep away. Spike's scales were gleaming and fit together like plates. Rarity didn't feel scared any more. Spike was here and that was all that mattered. He was her knight. Her knight in shining armor.
"Spike," whispered Rarity, "Please forgive me for whatever I've done... And I.... Ah..." Rarity shut her eyes for a second. "My head hurts... What happened?"
Spike looked down solemnly. Twilight appeared in Rarity's line of sight. Rarity's eyes widened in shock.
"Twilight!" she yelled, "What happened to your eye?!"
"I'm so happy you're okay..." sighed Twilight, "But..."
"But what?" asked Rarity.
Twilight frowned. This was going to be a shock to Rarity.
"Your horn is missing..."
Rarity didn't say anything. She jumped out from Spike's warm embrace and landed on her hooves. She reached up expecting to feel her white horn. Rarity only felt a painful stump.
"My horn..." whimpered Rarity, "It's gone..."
"It'll grow back, right?" asked Spike, "We can fix it, right?"
Twilight shook her head.
"Nothing can reattach a horn after it's been cut or broken off..."
"Bein' a regular pony ain't too bad," came Applejack's voice.
Rarity turned to face the familiar orange cow-pony. She had dark bandages on her flanks.
"Applejack!" cried Rarity in a mix of horror and elation, "What happ-"
"You're taking this a lot smoother than I thought!"
Rarity turned again to see Rainbow Dash. She was covered in scars and cuts.
"Rainbow Dash?! I-"
"Not being magical isn't too bad..."
Fluttershy's appearance took Rarity by shock the most. Her coat was matted with dried blood. Rarity even shrieked at the sight of her.
"Fluttershy? What happened?"
"We got what we deserved," said Twilight.
Rarity stood before her old friends. Each had a new trait that horrified her.
"Is it because I..." began Rarity, "P-Pinkie Pie?..."
The six friends all jumped. Spike lifted his head and stared around for the voice.
"There," pointed Spike.
He lifted a clawed finger to the burnt mass of glass and smoking wood where his dragon breath had struck. Everyone gasped. Pinkie Pie was slowing crawling towards them. She was charred black in numerous places. Half her face was horribly burned. The lower half of her body was missing and a small bit of her spine was showing. She inched closer and closer to Rarity by use of her front legs. There was a look of set hate and determination on her face. It didn't matter that half or body was burned off. Pinkie was still crawling towards Rarity.
"I... Won't... Let... You... Go..." wheezed Pinkie Pie, "I... Won't... Let... You... Live..."
"Pinkie Pie!" screamed Rarity. She ran towards Pinkie but was held back by Spike. "Let go! We have to help her!"
"She's the one that did this to us," said Twilight.
Rarity stopped. She looked around to her friends and their horrid injuries. She looked to Pinkie Pie who was crawling desperately towards her. She looked at Spike. She looked at the glass on the forest floor. She saw herself.
"I did this," mumbled Rarity, "I... Killed Pinkie Pie..."
"You... MURDERED.... me...." panted Pinkie Pie. She had tears in her angry eyes. "You... Never.. Listened... To... Me..." Pinkie even let out a small sob. "I... Had... To... Teach... You.... A... Lesson..."
"Stop, Pinkie Pie," whispered Rarity, "I'm sorry!"
Pinkie Pie froze and looked up.
"I'm sorry?" she asked, "I'm sorry?!” Pinkie Pie lifted herself up painfully on her remaining front legs. "You murder me and all you can say is SORRY?!"
"Please, Pinkie," sighed Rarity, "Understand that-"
"No!" screamed Pinkie Pie, "I was so confused... I thought I had the trust of my friends... Do you know what went through my head when you put a knife through my throat?!"
"WHY?!" yelled Pinkie, "Why?! Why was I the one who died?! Why was I the one who saw you for the monster you really were?! Why didn't any of you LISTEN TO ME?!"
Rarity and the others watched as Pinkie Pie's upper body screamed in anger. Pinkie Pie was again confused. She was angry, sad, felt regret, hurt, and frustrated all at the same time.
"I was a monster..." said Rarity finally, "I was desperate and selfish. I've sinned against my friends and this world. And you paid for it. I don't know how I'll ever live with this..." Rarity bowed her head. "I've caused the suffering of my friends and murdered twice because of my selfishness... And all I can do is apologize... I've lost my friends' trust and my horn..."
"I HATE YOU!" screamed Pinkie Pie.
"I HATE YOU!" repeated Pinkie Pie, "All of you! I hate you! Look at me! Look at what I've become! I've been forced to ruin all of your lives and now look at me! I should be dead!"
The last words rang in Rarity's head.
I should be dead!
"I'll never forgive you..." growled Pinkie Pie, "Never..."
"But I forgive you..."
Pinkie Pie stopped. She looked up to see Rarity.
"I forgive you for everything," said Rarity, "I know what I did was evil and vile... And I know I deserve more punishment than this but, Pinkie Pie please, don't become what I was. Don't murder like me. Please don't fall to my level... I don't deserve your forgiveness but you deserve my apologies and so much more..."
Pinkie stared into Rarity's eyes. Her breathing started to slow. Pinkie Pie's black eyes started to fade back to their normal light blue and her face molded itself back to the familiar face her friends knew and loved.
Pinkie Pie stared around to her friends. She saw Applejack and her bandaged legs. She saw Rainbow Dash and her scarred face. She saw Fluttershy who was covered in blood and had a dead look in her eyes. She saw Twilight and her red eye patch. She saw Spike and all the years of life and childhood that she had stolen from him. She saw Rarity and her stump horn. She saw a shard of mirror on the ground. Pinkie Pie saw herself. She saw her own scary meanie pants self.
"What have I become?..." mumbled Pinkie, "This isn't me... This isn't what I want... I'm just confused.... What am I doing here?..."
Tears filled the wide blue eyes as they stared around. Each friend had a scar left behind by Pinkie Pie.
"I-I'm sorry..." whimpered Pinkie Pie, "I'm sorry..." She started to weep. "What have I done... I'm sorry... I'm so so sorry... I just couldn't rest... It wouldn't allow me to rest..."
"We forgive you..." whispered Twilight. The others nodded in agreement. "We love you Pinkie. We should have treated you better."
Pinkie Pie grinned ever so slightly. She looked happy. Pinkie Pie looked once more around at her friends and then to Rarity. She took a big breath and fell to the floor. She finally taught her lesson.
Pinkie Pie didn't get up.
It was an odd sort of day. Nopony knew whether to be happy or sad. It was almost a town-wide event. Almost everypony was there in attendance. The field was packed with ponies. Everypony was gathered around a large pink casket. Even Princess Celestia herself had come. It was Pinkie Pie's funeral.
Twilight sat under a tree watching the whole affair. Soarin was standing alongside Rainbow Dash. They were paying their respects to Pinkie.
"Bye, Pinkie Pie," said Rainbow Dash. Tears were flowing but she wasn't weeping. "I'll see you later real soon..."
Soarin held her in his hooves. Even though she was covered in ugly scars, Soarin loved Rainbow Dash very much.
Applejack approached the casket. She was able to walk now that her bandages were removed. Twilight could see the dark, jagged shape of an apple that circled the three small red apples of Applejack's cutie mark.
"Ah'm sorry we could treat you any better," said Applejack, "Heavens to Betsy, you deserved better."
Applejack beckoned her sister over. Applebloom stared at her and refused to move.
As the afternoon crept by, more and more guests arrived. The Cakes said their teary farewells, the bar owner from the Colt's Stable came to visit, a few other friends of Pinkie Pie's came and wept, Pinkie Pie's family came to grieve, and a grey, pink eyed musical earthpony mare even came by with Pinkie Pie's family. She even brought her cello to play a mournful tune. A security guard from the mortuary came also came and apologized. But almost to the very end came Rarity.
Twilight sighed. Rarity was at the casket now. By far she took the longest. She was standing in front of the casket with Spike. His gigantic figure stood out from the crowd. Rarity leaned against Spike. Spike leaned down and kissed her. Twilight bit her lip.
"Thank you," whispered Rarity, "Thank you for everything. I'll make it up to you somehow. I promise." She looked up to Spike. "So, you don't mind that my horn is missing? I’m just a regular ugly mule now... I’m known as the ‘Mad Mare’! I’m like Bloody Marey to the children, my business is destroyed along with my reputation, and my beauty is all but missing. I’m handicapped in every way a unicorn can be and am nothing but a regular earth pony.."
"I don’t care," said Spike. He swept Rarity off her hooves and carried her away. Twilight could hear her giggle in her undeserved happiness.
Twilight sighed again. She lifted a hoof up to her eye patch. It still hurt, but not as much as her heart. There went Rarity. She had finally found her Prince Charming.
"At least she's happy," mumbled Twilight, "At least she's in good hands." She wiped a tear from her good eye. "I guess I'll just have to wait..."
"Uhm... No you don't..."
Twilight blinked. She turned to see Fluttershy sitting next to her. Twilight hadn't noticed her until now. Fluttershy's coat was still stained with a tint of red.
"You don't have to wait for anypony..." whispered Fluttershy, "You know... If that's what you want, that is..."
She leaned in and kissed Twilight on the lips.
"Your Highness, it’s here. Just like you wanted."
It was finally nightfall in Canterlot. The funeral had ended hours ago.
"Well done," said Celestia on her throne, "Bring it in."
Her guard saluted and gave a sharp whistle. At once, a platoon of muddy royal guards trooped into the throne room. With them however, was a dirty, pink casket. Celestia got up and smiled.
"Leave us," she commanded. The guards obeyed at once.
Celestia circled the casket. So this was the pony who caused so much trouble. This was the pony who came back to haunt her friends. Celestia grinned. That was the whole reason she wanted the casket here. She came back.
Celestia used her magic to lift open the casket's cover. Inside laid a bright pink pony. Her front hooves were placed above her chest. She wore a content look of peace of her face. If it weren't for the fact that the pony was missing everything from the chest down, She would've looked like she was sleeping and enjoying a pleasant dream.
This was what Celestia wanted. Her horn grew even brighter.
Pinkie Pie opened her eyes.
"Rise, my child," whispered Celestia.
Pinkie Pie sat up as straight as she could. She blinked and looked up at Celestia.
"Why did you wake me up?" asked Pinkie, "I was finally at rest..."
Celestia analyzed the pony. It was only her. She was the only one.
"There is something about you," said Celestia, "That allowed you to come back. I've tried this on numerous other subjects, each time being a failure."
Pinkie Pie watched the Princess.
"There is something different about you," continued Celestia, "You were allowed to come back."
"I guess I had some priorities," replied Pinkie Pie.
Celestia stared down hard at Pinkie Pie.
"Now that I have you," she said, "Let me ask you a few questions."
"Fire away, Celly," said Pinkie Pie waving her hoof.
Celestia grit her teeth at the blatant disregard for manners. She cleared her throat.
"Have you been to the other side?"
Pinkie Pie tilted her head.
"What do you mean?" sake Pinkie.
"Have you seen it?" Celestia looked hungry for knowledge. She looked excited. "Have you been to the 'here after'?"
"Yes," replied Pinkie Pie, "But you had to pull me back here just to ask me that?"
Celestia clapped her hooves together in elation.
"Tell me everything," she whispered, "Tell me what there is in the afterlife!"
Pinkie Pie frowned.
"I'm afraid I can't do that..." she mumbled.
Celestia's jaw dropped. She looked livid.
"Why not?" she demanded.
"I was told not to tell anypony about anything..." said Pinkie Pie, "It's against the rules."
"I must know," growled Celestia. Pinkie just shrugged.
Celestia thought hard for a second. A sly smile crept across her muzzle.
"Tell me what you know," said Celestia finally, "And I'll give you another chance."
Pinkie Pie's eyes widened.
"Another life under another name," whispered Celestia, "Don't you want to return to Ponyville?"
A few fillies and colts were prancing about. They were playing and singing outside of Carousel Boutique, shouting and having as much fun as they possibly could. They took turns in seeing how close they could get to it before running away in glee. Each one had a basket filled with old fruit and rocks. As to why they were playing with such things was beyond anypony who didn’t know the whole story. The song they were singing was an odd one. The children had made it up and hollered it every time they got bored. It was about the creepy ol’ Mad Mare that lived in the boutique. The children knew her as an evil lonely witch who would catch little foals and gobble them up in a big casserole! The Mad Mare was evil and she killed other ponies! Her rumors spread and were grotesquely warped. Rarity was as well known as the Boogie Pony. The fillies and colts continued to sing.
Mad Mare, Mad Mare
What do we see?
We see a pony named Pinkie!
She was nice, good, and sweet,
Then you chopped her into meat!
You were evil, twisted, torn.
Now you've gone and lost your horn!
All your friends now have scars
You should be locked up in bars!
You get bodies in your wagon
By the help of your pet dragon!
Don't turn away! Do anything but!
She will go and sew you're eyes shut!
She's got no magic and she sings
All about those nasty things!
Mad Mare, Mad Mare
What do we see?
We see a pony who is crazy!
The children screamed in laughter. They each picked up an old bit of fruit and threw it at the boutique. The fruit splattered and bounced off the walls, staining them in their juices. Some even threw the rocks at the windows, shattering them to pieces. Passersby saw this but turned a blind eye. The adults did nothing to stop the children from their little “games.” The owner of the boutique deserved it.
“Hey!” Rarity burst out from her shop, “Stop it! Stop throwing things at my boutique!”
The children screamed and pranced around.
“Run for your lives! It’s the Mad Mare!”
“Lookit! She’s got no horn!”
“Run! She’ll eat us!”
A colt raised a squishy tomato and tossed it at Rarity. It landed right on her face and exploded in a burst of red. Rarity sputtered. It was rotten. She grew livid and growled in frustration. The children only pointed and laughed. They came around almost everyday and mocked her. They were a constant reminder of Rarity’s mistake. They didn’t know the true story of course, but that didn’t make the mocking and humiliation any less hurtful. The songs and stories about Rarity would be passed down to each generation. Rarity was just an old mare’s tale. She was going to be as famous as Bloody Marey and the CandyStallion. Nothing but old tales to be told around a campfire.
But suddenly there was a huge shadow. The children looked up and screamed. A huge purple dragon landed in front of them. He spread his wings wide and roared. That’s all he could ever do. They were children and it was up to the parents to punish them (if they ever did, of course..). He couldn’t hurt the children and they knew it. The fillies and colts scattered and ran around, laughing and giggling. As they ran away, they stuck their tongues out at Rarity and Spike.
“Nah nah! See ya, you ol’ bat!”
They’d be back tomorrow. There was no doubt about it.
It was about two weeks from Pinkie Pie's funeral. Life had almost returned to normal in Ponyville. Rarity was relearning how to sew without her magic and trying to get her business back up and running. If she could get her customers back that is... Applejack spent long quality time with Applebloom who grew estranged from everypony. Rainbow Dash was in a detox routine planned out by Soarin to rid her of the alcohol in her system. Spike was snoozing outside of Rarity's boutique keeping watch for the children and keep them from taunting Rarity. There was a large golden ring around his finger.
Twilight and Fluttershy were both in the library. They were sitting on Twilight's bed and holding each other.
"So my missing eye doesn't bother you?" asked Twilight.
Fluttershy giggled and kissed the white eye patch.
"I'll have you even if you were blind," replied Fluttershy.
Knock Knock Knock.
Twilight looked up. Somepony was at the door. Twilight answered it.
"Hello, Captain Sparkle!"
"Oh, hello, Ditzy Doo!"
The grey wall-eyed Pegasus pony was syncing in the doorway. She reached into her mail pack and pulled out a small scroll. She handed it to Twilight.
"Thank you, Ditzy," said Twilight, "What would I do without you?"
"You'd be mail-less!" piped up Ditzy Doo. She grinned at Twilight. "See you later, Captain Sparkle!"
Ditzy Doo took off as Twilight waved goodbye. Fluttershy came up behind her.
"I don't like how she calls you 'Captain'..." whispered Fluttershy.
"Oh its fine," reassured Twilight, "We have something in common. Neither of us has perfect vision. Plus I do look like a pirate.."
Twilight nuzzled Fluttershy and looked down at the scroll. It was from the Princess. Twilight remembered the times when Spike delivered messages for Twilight. Twilight read the scroll.
"What’s it say?" asked Fluttershy.
"It says that a new pony's coming into town and we have to look after her for a while." said Twilight as she read the scroll.
Knock Knock Knock.
Twilight went back to the door. Was that the pony the Princess mentioned? Here? Already? Twilight opened the door to reveal a light purple, poofy red maned earth pony.
"Hi!" she chimed, "I'm Fizzy Pop!"
“And I can tell we’re gonna be great friends!”
Twilight - Untitled By: crookedtrees
Fizzy Pop By: Durpy (pony based on the recolor of Pinkie Pie from the G4 blind bags)