A fanfiction written by “Captain Marua”...
Apple Bloom's eyes flew open. She rolled off the floor and to her feet with a start, feeling as though she'd just awoken from a nightmare. What she didn't expect, was to have awoken into one, and as she looked around anxiously, she realized that was just the case.
Orange walls surrounded her, a white ceiling sat above her, and a carpeted grey floor lay beneath her hooves. There were no doors, only one window, and nopony else was there with her.
The only source of light was the window, where beams of sunlight streaked through the clouds of dust, leaving a visible trail. It was sitting too high for Apple Bloom to reach on her own, and there was no furniture in the room save for a single dresser drawer, which upon examination, was stocked with food.
She tried to figure out why she was there, but her mind felt eerily blank... The latest memory in her head was being tucked in by Granny Smith to go to bed... was this a dream? It had to be a dream of some type... there was no other way to explain just being trapped in a room like this!
What happened next only seemed to confirm her suspicions. Apple Bloom took a look up at the window again for a mere second, and when she looked back down, somepony else had appeared, laying in the center of the room like they'd been there all along.
With a wide, sweeping stretch, the newcomer, a white-coated mare with a striped blue and light blue mane and tale, amethyst purple sunglasses, and a musical note cutie mark, yawned and lazily rocked to her feet.
“Well, good morning, Equestria, this is your official wake-up call from K-Colt's own DJ Pon-3,” She mumbled, shuffling towards one of the walls. She was clearly half asleep. “That's right, this is the morning show, tellin' all you fillies and colts out there to start your day the right way, with-”
Apple Bloom winced as the sleepwalking mare stumbled forward, slammed her face into the wall, and bounced back a few times. She put her hooves over her nose and began hissing in pain.
“Um... Vinyl?” Apple Bloom took a few steps toward the eccentric radio DJ, “You all right?”
“Owowow... I'm going to be feeling that one next week.” It was only then that Vinyl Scratch realized that she wasn't in her room. Unlike Apple Bloom, she didn't seem bothered by this turn of events.
“Whoa. That is trippy.” She muttered. “Hey, kid, this your place? 'Cause I don't know what the law says about drugging ponies and taking them to your bedroom... which is suspiciously lacking in doors or other obvious entrances or exits.... but I think that might be illegal.”
“This ain't my room. I don't know why I'm here, either.” Apple Bloom explained.
“Trippy.” Vinyl repeated. “So, uh. I don't think we've been properly introduced, my name is Vinyl Scratch, and you are?”
“Apple Bloom. It's, uh, nice to meet you?”
Vinyl suddenly jumped in the air and pointed at the ceiling in triumph. “ACHIEVEMENT UNLOCKED!” She yelled, before landing with a loud crash into the dresser. “Ow... Yeah, nice to meet you too, Apple Blo-heeeyyy... they have cashews in this here dresser! I likey long time.”
Two hours later...
“So, Vinyl, how do we get out of here? My sister must be worried sick now...”
“I know! I'll bet Tavi's pretty bummed, too. But, I'm not worrying. I'll come up with a plan.” She laid back against a wall and munched down some of the cashews from one of the bags. “Until then, ain't nothing I can do, so Im'ma chill.”
Apple Bloom looked at the window again. She remembered thinking she couldn't reach it on her own, but with Vinyl giving her a boost...
“Sayy.... Vinyl, if you stand under the window, I could jump on your back and reach it and call for help!” She suggested. Vinyl leaped to her feet again.
“Kid, that's a great idea! Let's try it!”
Agreeably, Vinyl stood beneath the window and let Apple Bloom onto her back. Standing back on her hind legs, the Earth filly was just able to reach the window enough to get a look outside.
“Well, see anypony yet?” Vinyl asked.
“Uh... no. I don't see nothin'. The sun's in my eyes.”
“Isn't that a double negative, kiddo?”
“A dubba what?”
Scratch laughed. “You're not really the book learning type, are you, Apple Bloom? Lemme tell you, I was just like that. The establishment was just trying to keep me down, tellin' me I needed to know the fancy maths and how to write in curly cursive if I wanted to succeed in life. But look at me now, I'm the go-to-gal for parties and social events year-round! Bet they didn't see that one coming!”
Three hours later...
Apple Bloom was pacing back and forth in anxiety. She didn’t know, that was what bothered her the most. She didn’t know why she was here, or how she got here, or how she would get out. The only distinguishing features of the room were the window and the destroyed dresser. And, by stretching the definition of ‘features’, the seemingly implacable Vinyl Scratch, lounging in the corner like nothing was wrong, humming a tune, hadn’t moved since the two had tried to get to the window.
“Ain’t you even a little worried about why we're stuck in a room together?” She asked finally, breaking the silence, which had been tense for her, but relaxing for Vinyl, who had been in her own little world almost the entire time.
“Eh, not really.” She yawned. “In fact, I like it, it's kinda fun. I mean, now I don't need to worry about schedules and deadlines and paperwork. Y'know what, you don't need to worry about anything, either! If we get out, we get out. If we don't, we don't. Simple as that.”
“But, Vinyl? If we don't get out than nopony will even know where we are. They're probably already worried because we just vanished into thin air.”
“And if we get out, it'll be one funny story to tell, won't it?” Vinyl lowered her sunglasses to get a better look at Apple Bloom. Her eyes were a striking ruby red, in contrast to her shock blue mane. Her entire palette was deep, shimmering, glossy extremities, like gemstones.
“Y'know,” She remarked, putting her glasses back into place. “I think you really need to loosen up, kid. Play along with me, here!” Suddenly, she got to her feet, took a sizable frame piece from the smashed dresser and slid it between her and Apple Bloom. “Good morning, fillies and colts, this is K-Colt radio, broadcasting from studio absolutely nowhere, and with our lovely special guest host, Apple Bloom!”
Apple Bloom was momentarily stunned, and could only stammer out a “Hello?” into the 'microphone'.
“Don't worry, listeners, first timers take a while to get used to it, but y'know what they say, once you go K-Colt, you never go back! So, Apple Bloom, it's time for me to ask you a few questions. Where're ya from? I noticed you got the whole,” As she spoke the next line, Vinyl took on Apple Bloom's 'apple farmer' accent, “hard-workin' drawl, goin' there.”
“Uh... I live on Sweet Apple Acres, just outside a' Ponyville,” Apple Bloom said awkwardly.
“Aha! You know Big Macintosh, don't you?”
“Of course I do, he's my older brother!”
“So you've heard the rumors.” Vinyl said, with an ominous lowering of tone.
Vinyl leaned in closer. “Oh, yeah. The rumors. Did you hear that Big Macintosh has been pocketing some extra change every so often by doing some extra special photo shoots for a certain... ‘Playmare’ magazine?”
This didn't exactly have the intended effect on Apple Bloom, who was too young to understand what any of that meant.
“Big Macintosh is in a magazine? 'Playmare'? He ain't never told me about that! I should go look for him there... what's he doin', gettin' all famous and stuff?”
“Well, you won't find him there under 'Big Macintosh', that's for sure. You should probably start lookin' for his alias, 'The Anaconda'.” Vinyl added an aside to her 'listeners'. “That's right, ladies and gents! Without Octavia here to slow it down, this train goes all the way to the station! Woooo! And that brings us to our sponsor, and man oh man, I am hungry right now! Nothing hits the spot like Pitarro's brand cashews, available in a range of flavors including salty, dry, and salty! We'll be right back after these messages!”
“How'd I do?” Apple Bloom asked.
“None too shabby. Once we get outta this, I've got to get you into the real station. Tavi needs to take a day off sometime, anyway, she takes this stuff too seriously!”
Apple Bloom smiled, but then her mind began to wander. “What in the hay were you talkin' about, 'The Anaconda'?” She asked. Vinyl simply put a hoof on her shoulder.
“Sweet, innocent little Apple Bloom.” She said. “Someday, somepony will impart unto you the secrets of life.”
With a dull tone, she added, “Just don't actually go looking up Playmare magazine. Trust me, if your brother's in it, you don't want to see the closeups.”
“Uh... all right.” Apple Bloom giggled, “But y'know, that was fun. Is that really how things go on the radio?”
“Oh, give or take a few songs and snide remarks and callers and stuff, more or less, here and there. Well, enough of that, by now the commercials are done squawking, so let’s get back to the broadcast, shall we?”
Three hours later...
“... And when they finally found him, he was pale, still, motionless, his lifeless eyes staring upward at the ceiling, hooves locked in the playing position... but the cursed violin was nowhere to be found!”
Apple Bloom finished the story that she’d heard years before on a camping trip, with her older sister, into the ‘microphone’. She had told it so well that Vinyl Scratch, trying her hardest to remain calm, appended with a shaky, anxious laugh.
“Well,” She shuddered, forcing a smile, “Somepony tell Tavi not to pick up any violins from the side of the road, even if they say they’re house trained... Ahaha... *Ahem!* That concludes our Poor Horror Power Hour, and remind me never to get Apple Bloom here to read me a bedtime story! Thank you, goodnight! This has been Vinyl Scratch,”
“And Apple Bloom! Have a great day, Equestria!”
Vinyl was so absorbed in the roleplay they had going, that she sat in front of the mic with the fake smile on her face up until the point it would be turned off in an actual studio. Then, she bolted for the corner of the room, curled up, and started shivering uncontrollably.
“I-I-I was s-s-serious ab-b-b-bout that b-b-b-bedt-t-time st-t-tory part-t-t...” She chattered.
“Did I really scare ya? Shoot, sorry. I didn’t know my stories were that scary.” Apple Bloom was almost amused by the sight. She’d never scared a full-grown pony into hysterics before. But, she did have enough horror tales to fill an hour, and it was Vinyl’s idea to begin with.
Suddenly, Vinyl sat up straight.
“Eureka~!” She yelled, “I’ve got it! I’ve got an idea!”
“What kinda idea?”
“How to get out of here, of course!” Vinyl lowered her sunglasses and winked. “I told you I'd come up with something! Not worrying about it helps you think, doesn't it?”
She gestured at the dresser. “Unfortunately, we lack the materials to put that thing back together. But if we could at least get it to support me and you on my back, and give us another... say, foot, or so, then I just might be able to squeeze you out that window, and then you can find somepony to help!”
“Hey, that's a great idea! Lemme see what I can do with this thing.”
Apple Bloom looked over the smashed dresser. One of the drawers, which was a half foot tall, was intact, as well as the top of the dresser. Three pieces, including the one that Vinyl had used at the makeshift microphone, were about three feet tall and had comprised the framework of the dresser. With some deliberation, Apple Bloom picked up two of those pieces and brought them to Vinyl.
“Hold these ones up for me so I can split 'em.” She said. Vinyl held one up at a diagonal while Apple Bloom brought her hoof down sharply on it. Repeating the process with the other one, she now had four 1&fraCSSstyleCSS2; foot pieces of wood.
Then, she took the drawer and set it down underneath the window, set the four pieces of wood inside it at its corners, and rested the dresser top on those to make an ersatz platform. It didn't look very sturdy, but Vinyl whistled, impressed nonetheless.
“Not bad, kid! I don't care if it works or not, that was cool enough for me to trust it.”
She lowered her back and allowed Apple Bloom on, then gingerly stepped on the platform. It wobbled, but the wood was sturdy and didn't break immediately under the pressure. The extra height was enough for Apple Bloom to reach the window, but as she fit her front legs through, her impromptu platform began to crack.
With a yelp, Vinyl toppled onto the floor as the stool collapsed, leaving Apple Bloom hanging off the window, scrabbling for a hoofhold. Her forelegs were barely able to keep her up, and her rear legs pushing against the wall were doing little to help.
“C'mon, Apple Bloom! You're smarter than the window, don't let it beat you!” Vinyl cheered. “You can do it! Keep trying!”
Apple Bloom tried, but she only felt herself slide further back, into the room. When Vinyl noticed this, she took a quick look around and her eyes fixed on the last of the three-foot frame beams. If she stood on her hind legs, she just might be able to...
She ran to the beam, grasped it in her mouth, and ran back under the window, standing with her forelegs against the wall and pushing up against Apple Bloom's rump with the beam. Apple Bloom felt a few prickly splinters and a sharp sting, but then found herself pushed over the threshold of the window and was soon hanging by her stomach, her backside in the room and her head out. The light was blinding, but it wasn't shining directly into the room any longer, and when her eyes adjusted, Apple Bloom could see where she was...
Apple Bloom's eyes flew open. She sat up in her bed and looked around the room... which was no longer the unusual room she'd spent the past eight hours in, but the much more familiar bedroom she lived in. Her alarm had just gone off, and that was what had awoken her.
“Wh... wha?” She murmured, sliding out of bed and shuffling to her door. “So... it really was just a dream...” She absentmindedly scratched at an itch on her flank... and then retracted her hoof when she felt splinters.
“But,” With a gasp, she looked around at her rump. Where Vinyl had pushed her, there were a few scratch marks and splinters. “But... but wha?! What in the hay is goin' on?!”
“Morning, Apple Bloom.” An all-too familiar voice called. Her bedroom door opened to reveal, none other than Vinyl Scratch. “Sleep well? Have any strange dreams or anything?”
Apple Bloom looked back at her rump, and then at Vinyl. “But.... I... but...” She murmured.
“Ah, don't worry about it. Don’t know why I showed up at your house, but that just makes things easier. I need to hustle it up to the radio station before Octavia turns it into Equestria's first classical music broadcasting network, you want to come along? I'll talk to your family about it.”
Although she wanted to accept, Apple Bloom was still puzzling over what had happened.
“Whaa?!” She babbled.
“D'oh, c'mon, kid! Let's get going, daylight's burning, the clock is turning!”