No one knew where They came from, what caused Them, only that the first one was found lying motionless and cold on the edge of the EverFree Forest. They identified her as Joyful Laughter, a simple earth pony who liked to make other ponies laugh. Nopony knew why this happened, she had been perfectly healthy the day before she disappeared, and then turned up like this a few days later. The Ponyville doctors were stumped, they had said there were no visible signs of death; that she had simply dropped dead. That was the probem; she wasn’t dead. Her body had been put in a hospital bed, and preparations for her funeral were to made the following day. Her funeral never happened. That fateful day, Joy’s body walked again, but Joy no longer was there. In her place a monster existed, hungry for pony flesh. Thus doomsday began, and life changed forever.
Ch 1-The Day Equestria Ended
Twilight Sparkle turned in her sleep, sweating heavily. In her dreams she was visited by the lifeless body of Joyful, staring empty eyed at her, almost with a hungry look on her face. Suddenly Joy charged at her!
“EEK!” Twilight screamed as she fell out of bed, drenched in sweat. She stood up fast, and looked around, her eyes still adjusting to the dark.
“Lights on!” She commanded, and the room lit up with a warm yellow glow. She rubbed her damp forehead with a hoof.
“What a dream, I cant believe my mind would think of Joy like that.” She remembered what had happened to Joy and grew very sad, she had never said two words to her, and yet her loss hit her as hard as all the other ponies in PonyVille. Not only this, but she had also been tasked with organizing Joy’s funeral today. ‘What a depressing job!’ she thought, but then again, someone had to do it. She looked back at her bed, thinking of going back to sleep, but that dream had scared all hints of fatigue from her body, there was no way she could sleep right now.
“I might as well go eat breakfast, after all, today’s gonna’ be a long day.” She started to walk towards the stairs, then remembered spike. She looked at his bed, seeing him peacefully snoring in his blue blanket. ‘I’m surprised my scream didn’t wake him,’ she mused, ‘he is a deep sleeper though.’ With that thought twilight went downstairs to get some food.
Besides the scary dream that Twilight had, this morning was quite uneventful, a normal morning by definition. Yet an uneasy feeling rested in twilights gut, she couldn’t get the idea out of her head that something wasn’t right, especially with that dream, the hungry expression on Joy’s face, with those empty eyes…
“Ha!”, Twilight barked a laugh, “Look at me getting myself worked up over a dream! I’m like a little filly after a bad nights sleep,” but she could shake that heavy feeling in her stomach, and breakfast didn’t help it either. It persisted during her walk to Pinkie Pies house too, but she tried to ignore it. Thud thud. Twilight knocked on Pinkie’s door.
“Hi Twilight!” Pinkie was as energetic as ever, if not a little pale. Twilight was surprised to see Pinkie handling it so well, Joy and Pinkie were supposedly very close, but then again, its Pinkie.
“Hi Pinkie, I’m… sorry about Joy, how are you doing?” At the mention of Joy’s name, Pinkie looked away.
“Joy… “ Pinkie sounded sad, something completely alien to Twilight But it lasted only a short moment, and Pinkie quickly recovered to her normal peppy self, but if one looked closely, it was easy to tell she was holding back a torrent of emotions.
“I’m really sad she’s gone, but it would just make her sad if I were sad because of her, ya’ know?” Pinkie’s speech was as speedy as ever. “I mean, I’m really happy everyone’s sad for her because it means everyone loved her as much as I did! I mean at she’s going to a better place now, right?” Twilight couldn’t help but smile at Pinkies speech, still happy, even at the loss of a close friend. She really was something.
“If you put it that way, it almost sounds like it wasn’t a bad thing-“ Twilight stopped herself, not wanting to upset Pinky, but pinkie didn’t seem to hear, she was staring off into space with a sad look on her face.
“Er, Pinky?” She started.
Pinky snapped to attention, “Oh sorry Twilight! I forgot you were there!” She definitely was affected by Joy’s loss, even if she tried to hide it.
“Well I’ll leave you alone here, but first I wanted to ask you to speak at Joy’s funeral procession. You seemed to know her the best out of all her friends.”
“Okay!” Pinkie quickly replied. Twilight nodded, “Bye then,” and left, feeling happy and sad at the same time. She had to go tell everyone the date of the funeral, and then go check to see that the doctor had finished preparing the body for decomposition.
“Yipes!” Twilight exclaimed to herself as a shudder went down her spine. At the though of Joy’s body, she had remembered her dream, and the uneasy feeling that she had forgotten at Pinkie Pie’s house came back slightly stronger. She once again pushed it out of her mind, ‘nothing is wrong,’ she told herself. She had a lot to do, and needed to be finished before lunch in 4 hours, and these silly false-premonitions were not helping her at all. Twilight just kept walking to her next stop.
By lunchtime, Twilight’s checklist was complete, and she was so hungry she could eat a monkey! Part of this savage hunger was from the miles of walking she had to do, from house to house, back and forth all over Ponyville. She really hadn’t thought of routes that much, and made a mental note to consider that next time. But the other reason she has consumed so much energy was her having to constantly try to forget about her now extremely annoying dream, and of course every time she finally forgot, the mere mention of Joy’s name brought back the uneasiness stronger than before. She was hoping that a good meal was all she needed, but breakfast hadn’t helped the dark sensation in her navel, and she really didn’t have much hope for lunch either.
“You’re order, ma-am?” Said the waiter pony, seemingly appearing from nowhere.
“Ah! Oh, right, you startled me, heh heh…” Twilight was slightly embarrassed, and looked at her menu, “I guess I’ll have the usual.”
“A daisy sandwich it is, coming right up ma-am” She really didn’t understand why he was always so formal, she came there all the time. ‘They must really be serious about atmosphere here,’ she concluded, ‘funny for such a small town restaurant.’ She ate slowly, with a pensive look on her face. She still couldn’t figure out what troubled her so deeply, but she hoped it would end with the day. She had one more thing to do before the funeral was ready to go; check with the doctor about Joy’s body.
Ch 2- First Victims
Twilight briskly trotted towards the Ponyville Infirmary, the happy feeling from her satisfied hunger diluted by the ever-present feeling of dread that had ghosted her for the entire day. She had a schedule to keep, and she couldn’t let childish fears get in the way of her pace. Even with this resolve, the feeling got stronger with every step towards the Infirmary. She rounded the corner, and the building came into view. There could not of been a more normal looking building, A one story cottage with white sheets around the back, masking the open air wing from view. The front of the building had a large red cross, making the entire set-up hard to miss for even the sickest pony. It’s appearance should have been comforting to anypony, but at the mere sight of it, Twilight’s mane stood on end, sharp enough to spear a fish, and her dark feeling in the pit of her stomach turned into a burning sensation of horror and fear.
“Ugh! What is wrong with me!” She shook her head, trying to renew her resolve. “It’s just a building, a structure of wood and straw, nothing scary at all.” Twilight repeated this to herself as she walked, more slowly than before, towards the infirmary. Somehow, after an eternity of walking and muttering, she had reached the door, and regained some of her composure.
“I’m sure nothing is wrong.” She said to herself, then knocked on the door.
The deep thud of her knocking echoed maliciously throughout the suddenly quiet town. She waited for someone to answer her knock, but after a while, it became apparent no one would let her in.
“I’d better check this out, just in case.” Twilight told herself, trying to strengthen her courage. She was sure that Doctor Freemane was just busy, and the nurses too. Although this self-reassurance was futile, she still mustered up the nerve to open the door and walk inside. As soon as the door cracked, she was hit by the foulest smell ever to cross her nose, and she wrinkled up her snout in disgust.
“W-what is that smell!” She exclaimed, putting a hoof over her nose. “It’s so familiar, how could I forget a smell this putrid!” She thought, and recalled a memory from when she took pony anatomy in Chanterlot. The image of Joy’s blank, hungry eyes flashed through her head, but she quickly silenced the thought. She just kept walking through the hallway of the Infirmary, her heart beginning to beat faster than it should. As she neared one doorway, she started hearing faint sounds.
“H-hello? Is anyone there?” Twilight called out towards the open door, slowly approaching its threshold. There came no reply, but the sounds continued, more audibly even. Twilight could make up cracks and pops, like the sound of breaking bone. The sound of smacking and chewing could be heard as well. Twilight gagged, and stopped for a moment She held her breath, while her heart beat a tattoo on the inside of her chest. She was breathing heavily, but still kept moving towards the source of the sounds. She reached the door, and forced herself to look around the corner, what she saw would be ingrained in her memory for the rest of her life.
It was Joyous Laughter, bent over something and enthusiastically devouring it. Ignoring this detail, Twilight instinctively called out her name.
“Joy!” The pony stopped, and shakily turned her head to look at Twilight. But looked wasn’t the correct term, instead she just faced her, with blank, hungry eyes.
‘M-my dream!’ Twilight thought to herself, frozen in place by the empty stare boring a hole into her neck. A strand of drool fell from Joy’s mouth, and she turned around, revealing what she was so zealously enjoying moments before. It was the doctor, lying dead on the floor, blood was everywhere, and several chunks of flesh were missing from his neck. As Joy took a step towards Twilight, the Doctor opened his eyes, revealing the same blank, empty stare that Joy had. Twilight screamed.
“AAAAAH!” She screamed her until her lungs were empty, and could not breathe in afterward. She kept staring as both Joy, and the now reanimated Doctor shambled towards her. She began to feel faint, and her heart skipped a beat, the shock of which caused her to take a breath. At that very moment, Joy charged. As if in slow motion, Twilight watched her doom run at her, but before the pony could sink it’s teeth into her neck, she summoned up all her remaining willpower, and teleported to the first safe place she could think of. The library. The last thing she saw was a shocked Spike, before she closed her eyes and sank into unconsiousness.