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Food Fights are Magic

Part 1
The Party Pooper

Since her return to Equestria (and frankly to reality, as she felt), Princess Luna had come to understand a little how things had been for the last thousand years. Being magically transformed into Nightmare Moon had meant that she had not really been herself, and her memories of that time were like those of another person. But then, she thought, I really was another person then. I let hate consume me, and that was the worst thing that could have happened. I turned against Celestia, of all ponies, my own sister who loves me more than anyone else.

But that was over now, she was back, and she was herself again. The trouble was that being herself meant that she was smaller, not as powerful as Celestia, and frankly she was a rather moody teenager. But on the plus side, now it seemed that ponies had changed, they enjoyed the night, they liked her moon. It made her laugh (though it was a very quiet laugh most of the time) to see young ponies out having fun and being romantic by the light of her wonderful moon. Of course, by the end of the night there weren't many ponies awake, but there were always some.

"All night PARTY!" the pink pony with the pouffy mane and tail cried at the top of her lungs. Luna giggled. It had been great fun. Starting out with the food, the cakes (lots and lots of cakes), moving on to the games, pin the tail on the pony, truth or dare, blind pony's buff, postmare's knock (that one was kind of naughty as well), the spooky stories that she so enjoyed, and then the massive food-fight with the left over cakes and things.

"Pinkie, you throw the best parties in Ponyville!" the midnight-blue alicorn (now liberally smeared with frosting and crumbs) said, her tiara crooked.

"And you throw the best cupcakes!" Pinkie aimed another one at Luna, who dodged it and replied with a trifle that had somehow escaped the first round.

"Yay! Round two!" Pinkie cried, and then everypony in the place was throwing food at everypony else. Luna giggled as her tiara was knocked clean off by a flying carrot cake. It was messy, it was chaotic, and it was fun! She had never had so much fun before in her life, ever. All the Elements of Harmony were there except for Fluttershy, who had excused herself because of her responsibilities with the animals (or more likely because she did not like the sort of party this one had turned into), and…

"Pinkie, where's Rainbow Dash?" the princess asked, dodging a deftly-thrown custard tart. "She was here earlier, but I don't see her here right – glub!" she was silenced by a cream cake in the mouth.

"Oh, she had to go. I'm sure she'll be all right though," Pinkie replied happily. The pony who could swipe a cupcake from Celestia's hoof thought nothing of hitting Luna in the face with a cake – particularly in a food fight.

_____________________________________________

Rainbow Dash struggled helplessly against the leather restraints that bound her to the table. Closer and closer crept the ghastly thing. It moved with a rattling sound of dried skin and bones, and chuckled with an evil glee. The knife gleamed in the moonlight, and…

"Aaarrgh!" Rainbow Dash woke with a scream of pure terror and groaned. She had bailed on the party three hours before, after the Princess decided to tell creepy stories. The pegasus pony might boast of being fearless, but even she had her limits, and apparently being alicorn goddess of the night gave a pony a great sense of creepiness. Pinkie might have responded by singing 'Giggle at the Ghostie" until Luna hit her in the face with a cream pie, but Dash had been well and truly creeped out by the cannibal pony story and had been having bad dreams all night. It was made worse by the fact that she was the fearless Rainbow Dash, she just didn't get scared like this. Or she wasn't meant to.

"It's not true, I mean, what sorta pony makes cupcakes out of ponies! It's just not possible," she told herself as she tried unsuccessfully to get back to sleep. The imagery in the princess' story came back to her mind again and she shuddered. "Maybe being Nightmare Moon affected her more than we realised. That is sick, sick, sick!"

Nightmare Moon… it wasn't daylight…
"But it oughta be!" Dash cried in horror as she looked at the glowing numerals on her alarm clock. "Oh no! I oughta have known it! It was a sign! Nightmare Moon is back!"

With her trademark high speed, Rainbow Dash streaked from her comfortable cloud bed and shot towards Sugarcube Corner, the last place she had seen Princess Luna. From inside she heard music still playing, but over it all the sound of a fight. Dash's imagination made of it a desperate struggle to keep Nightmare Moon from taking over. Or maybe she was…

"No, cupcakes are not made out of ponies! But Pinkie's in trouble, so…"

She kicked down the door and galloped in, ready to fight – only to be hit in the face by a choux bun stuffed with cream, much to her disgust.

The scene inside Sugarcube Corner was a sight to behold. It seemed to Dash that every possible surface was coated in food, the floor, the walls, the ceiling, the furniture, even the windows. And so was every pony. The shop had apparently been the site of the most epic food fight in all of Equestrian history. The fact made Dash feel a little foolish. There she was, charging about like it was the end of the world, and all that had happened was that Luna was having so much fun that she had forgotten the time. And as a result she, Rainbow Dash, had got a cream bun in the face.

"Princess Luna! Your Majesty!" Dash bowed, not knowing which of the many food-covered ponies was actually the royal goddess of the night.

"Yes?" the blue alicorn was totally unrecognisable, covered from ear to hoof in whipped cream, frosting and crumbs. "Rainbow Dash! What do you want? And please, stop the bowing, I'm covered in cake. Isn't this wonderful? It's my special all-night Pinkie Pie party! I think it's the best party ever!" She laughed happily.

"It's certainly been the biggest food-fight ever," Dash giggled. "But, your Majesty, the moon is still up! It's time for Celestia to raise the sun, but she can't if you won't lower the moon."

"Oh, my stars!" Luna gasped in horror. "The time? Where's the clock? What's the time? I can't see the clock!"

"That's because it's covered in cake, silly!" Pinkie Pie giggled. "Oh! Dash is right, we are late with the sun!"

"Oh! And it's all my fault! I forgot to watch the time and now I haven't lowered the moon for Celestia! I'm so sorry!" The messy alicorn dashed out of the party into the dark street. Thankfully it was summer and so dawn was meant to be early, before most ponies were awake to notice. Luna carefully wiped frosting from her horn and raised it towards the glowing orb of her moon. As her horn glowed gently, the moon began slowly to descend, and Celestia's sun rose to take its place. That made Luna feel even worse – Celestia had been waiting patiently to raise the sun while she had been enjoying Pinkie Pie's party.

The moon safely below the horizon, Luna looked down at herself and giggled. She really was covered in food, every inch of her! Oh, what a party pony she looked! Why, no-one would recognise her as royalty if it wasn't for her wings and her horn. Partying the night away with Pinkie Pie and her friends was fun, but she did have her responsibilities, and she knew that night was just as important as day. But it had been nice of Tia (she thought of her sister by the old nickname again) to wait for her to lower the moon and not to have done it herself.

Rainbow Dash was very glad that it was day again. In the bright sunlight she could forget Luna's creepy story and no-one would think she was afraid. Because she wasn't. Oh no, Rainbow Dash was never afraid of anything…

"Cupcakes?" an eerie voice asked. Dash started in shock and looked around to see Luna, pulling the creepiest expression she had ever seen on a pony. The pegasus pony screamed and streaked into the air, leaving Luna rolling on the ground in gales of helpless laughter. Pinkie Pie joined in. She was getting to really like Luna – the younger princess was even better at pranking than Celestia, and did not have the same royal poise and composure. When a Luna prank came off, Luna laughed out loud.

"Oh, Pinkie, I loved it," Luna told the pink earth pony when she had finally finished laughing. "It was the best party. But I need to get back to Canterlot. And I think we all need to get some rest."

"Yeah, all night parties do that," Pinkie agreed. "I found Twilight asleep under a pile of cookies. That pony studies too hard, but she can't handle a Pinkie Pie party! Mind you, it does take a lot of practice to do that, especially an all night Pinkie Pie party."

"I… I've got to go," Luna said seriously. "I need to take a great big bath before I go to bed, so… I'll be back soon." She wasn't sure what to say, how to say goodbye to Pinkie, and so she decided that she would just leave without saying goodbye – that would make things easier for her at any rate.

"Okie-dokie-lokie," Pinkie replied before bouncing back inside to start the mammoth clean-up operation after what had been the greatest food fight of all time. Luna pondered her next move. She could fly back, but in the warm summer sun all the things she was covered in would set on her coat, and so it was a much better idea to use her magic to take her safely home in an instant. She concentrated and her horn began to glow.

The untidy alicorn appeared in her royal chambers in a blaze of magic energy from her own teleportation spell. The chambers were decorated in the subdued colours that went with her coat, pictures and mirrors edged with silver, and silver on the bed and ceiling. Lately she had started to put up things that she had received from those she had met. There was a carved wooden apple from Applejack, a wonderful dress from Rarity, and of course everything Pinkie Pie had given her – mostly items in a shade of pink that clashed horribly with the décor. She didn't mind at all; in fact she liked the colour clash.

Covered in cake as she was, Luna decided that she had to wash herself clean before taking a bath, and she had just finished washing all the cake off herself when someone rapped sharply on the chamber door. Rather annoyed by the interruption to her bathing, she strolled to the door.

"Who is it?" She called.

"Princess Celestia," a guard answered – or she assumed that it was a guard. No doubt Tia had come to ask her about exactly why the moon had been late in descending that morning. Well, knowing Tia's sense of fun, Luna was sure her big sister would understand, even if she could very well lecture Luna on responsibility. The rather damp alicorn opened the door with her powers.

Celestia stood there, but not Celestia as Luna had come to know her. True, the thousand years of her sole rule over Equestria had changed her, but Luna had quickly learned what those changes were. One thing she had noticed was that Celestia was usually smiling, but this time she was not. By her side was a very serious-looking unicorn pony with a grey coat and black mane, a pony whose cutie-mark was a single white diamond. She also looked like she had never smiled in her whole life and the attempt might actually hurt her.

"Tia?" Luna asked cautiously, concern in her voice. Celestia did not smile as Luna expected. If anything her frown became positively thunderous.

"Princess Luna! I expected better of you! You are a royal pony, and yet you neglected your duties! All because you wanted to have fun, to have a party like any common pony!"

"Tia? Are you all right?" The younger princess was rather worried. Celestia sounded serious – she looked serious. And this wasn't her at all. She would understand, even if she might tell Luna gently that her responsibilities were important. But no, here she was lecturing Luna like the strictest of schoolmares speaking to a bad filly who had stayed out late or played hooky.

"We have responsibilities, Princess Luna. We must keep order in Equestria, you know. Every kingdom has to be orderly. And how can our kingdom be orderly when you run off to parties where you get covered in food? Where is your tiara? Where are your silver shoes?"

The answer, of course, was that they were back in Sugarcube Corner where she had left them. Luna shuffled her hooves awkwardly, not sure of what to say to this very different version of her sister.

"Royalty has dignity, Princess Luna! You seem to have forgotten that. And please, do not call me by that silly nickname! I am Princess Celestia, and I expect to be addressed as such. By all."

"Tia…" Luna began. This time her sister cut her off.

"No, Princess Luna. I am not amused by your antics, however much the common herd is. Why, everypony thinks that you are just a silly little party filly now! You need to be royal, to be distinguished, and to learn proper deportment!"

Luna was shocked. This really was not the Tia she knew. It wasn't even the Tia she had come to know after her thousand-year absence. Something had happened to her, and Luna had no idea what that was. She had some idea that it was associated with this serious grey unicorn, though, some sort of magic that the unicorn had cast on the princess.

"Ti… I mean, Celestia, who is your new… advisor?" Luna asked. She would not call her own sister 'Princess' that was taking things too far. After all, they were joint-rulers of Equestria, and while on Tia's lips "Princess Luna" sounded like a put-down, for Luna to call Tia 'Princess' would have felt like submission, and Luna was far too annoyed to be doing any submitting at that moment.

"She is quite a find, I can tell you", the very tone grated on Luna's ears, smug, self-satisfied, and sanctimonious. "This is Joystone, one of my best students, perhaps even better than Twilight Sparkle. Joystone understands the importance of order, you know, even better than I ever did. She has much to teach everypony in Equestria. Why, with her advice Equestria will finally be the ordered kingdom that it should be."

It was with that little speech that the truth dawned on Luna and she understood why her sister was acting so out of character. This order-loving unicorn pony had used her magic to make the usually fun-loving Princess Celestia into the same sort of joyless dull pony that she was. Joystone indeed, Luna thought, she wouldn't know joy if it sneaked up behind her and hit her with a large apple pie. Though hitting her with a large apple pie would be very, very funny! The thought made Luna stifle a giggle, much to the disapproval of both Joystone and the older princess.

"Joystone, will you explain to Princess Luna what you explained to me?" Celestia asked. Luna sighed.

"Sister, I don't think…"

"No! You don't!" Celestia replied angrily. She turned on her hooves and strode regally out. Joystone remained behind with Luna. The grey unicorn sighed.

"Princess Luna, surely we can talk like sensible ponies, even if you have not been acting like one recently…"

"No!" Luna replied angrily. She might have played along to gain information from Joystone, but felt in no mood to pretend to be reasonable. "I know what you're up to! You've used your magic to make my sister as dull as you are!"

"I've shown her the need for order, that's all! Order is important, you know, in a kingdom…" Joystone's tone was reasonable; she obviously did not understand Luna's concerns at all. Why would she? She was the one who had put Celestia under some sort of control spell.

"Of course I know that, and so does Celestia!" Luna stamped one hoof. "But order doesn't mean just a dull, regimented life. It means everything working as it should work, it means… harmony! And the Elements of Harmony are honesty, generosity, loyalty, kindness and laughter," Luna emphasised the last word. "Harmony and order mean everyone working together, getting along, and being friends. But part of friendship is…" Luna searched for the right things to say, trying to remember Twilight Sparkle's reports about friendship. "Is surprises. You keep learning new things about your friends, and you have the sort of fun that surprise parties always involve. Friends relax together!"

"There's no time to relax," Joystone declared firmly. "Certainly not for princesses. You'll learn, and until you do, I think it best for Celestia to raise the moon as well as the sun. Now…" Joystone's horn began to glow. Luna felt the grey pony's magics begin to take control of her mind. But unlike Celestia, she was forewarned, and she vanished in a blaze of magic from her own horn.

_______________________________________________________

Part 2:
A cake in the back of the head is worth…something.

Even though it was morning, Twilight Sparkle was still sleeping soundly in her own bed in the library - the result of having been at Pinkie's party until well after midnight - when she was woken by Luna crashing down on top of her. The alicorn princess had teleported quickly, and had not had time for careful aim, so she landed atop Twilight in a tangle of sheets. The pair rolled around the floor for a while before they could untangle themselves, and then Twilight stared in shock at her visitor.

While Luna was still sans tiara and shoes, she was still obviously Luna. The fact that she had teleported into the library in such a state clearly indicated, even to a half-asleep Twilight that something was seriously wrong. There was trouble in Canterlot, she thought, and that meant her mentor Princess Celestia was in trouble.

"Luna! What's up?" she asked. The midnight-blue alicorn shuddered.

"It's Tia… she's being controlled by… a unicorn."

"An evil unicorn controlling the Princess?" Twilight gasped in horror. "She could destroy Equestria! If she's sent you away, she could destroy us by endless day!"

"No, it's not like that," Luna shook her shining blue mane. "It's… a unicorn called Joystone…"

"Joystone!" the purple unicorn recognised the name at once. Joystone's name was a reminder that sometimes a pony's name was less than suitable for her cutie-mark and her personality – a fact that resulted from names being given long before any pony got her cutie-mark. Twilight was a serious pony by nature, a bookish student of magic. But Joystone had elevated dullness to a virtue, something Twilight had never done even in her most bookish moments. "Joystone's taken over Canterlot? I know she's obsessed with order, but I never thought she'd take it any further than re-arranging another student's desk!"

"But she has. She even tried to control me, but I teleported myself here before she could do anything. I think Tia will be raising the moon for a while now – and I mean until we can get her out from under Joystone's control."

Twilight was horrified. If Joystone had taken over, then it was only a matter of time before she tried to use Celestia's magic to transform Equestria into her dream world – grey, dull and joyless. Joystone had to be stopped! She ran to the nearest bookcase and began to search frantically for books on unicorn mind-control.

"We don't have much time! If Joystone uses Celestia's magic to transform Equestria, we've all had it…"

"She can't, not so long as I'm free," Luna said. "And… Joystone isn't evil; she's not like Nightmare Moon. She's just… well, terminally boring and dull."

"Yes," Twilight agreed, thinking of the pony who had to have every pencil in precisely the right order on her desk when class began. "Something must be done!"

"Ooh, ooh, who's boring and dull?" Luna screamed in shock as Pinkie Pie appeared from out of a bookcase. Twilight chuckled.

"Pinkie, I have no idea how you do that, but am I glad to see you! We have a real emergency on our hands; the fate of Equestria hangs in the balance…"

"Yay! Pinkie Pie is here to save the day. What day? What needs saving?"

"An old class-mate of mine called Joystone has taken control of the princess… er, of Princess Celestia, I mean."

"Well, of course, 'cos Luna's here, so she can't be being controlled and if Celestia's being controlled then it's a good thing Luna isn't and what will Celestia do? And who's the meanie mean-pants?" the random pink pony asked.

"She's just the dullest and most orderly pony I ever met, and she'll probably ban parties," Luna explained. Pinkie screamed in horror and ran around the room sixteen times in shock before colliding with a table.

"Ban… parties?" she asked, looking up from the pile of books that had fallen on top of her. Luna nodded firmly.

"Ban parties. All parties. Especially yours."

"Oh! Then I'll be public enemy number one and that's a bad thing and everyone will want to arrest me, and no more parties! That's awful! That's the worst! No more parties?"

"That's why we have to stop Joystone," Luna explained. "And I had an idea. I thought that she wouldn't know what joy was if it hit her in the back of the head with an apple pie. And then I remembered that you are the element of Laughter – which is close enough."

"Sooo, you want me to hit this Joystone pony in the back of the head with an apple pie?" Pinkie asked. Luna nodded in affirmation, and Pinkie Pie smiled happily. "Okie-dokie-lokie!" she said. "I have to find Applejack! You can't make an apple pie without apples, and Applejack has more apples than any other pony in Ponyville!"

With that, Pinkie galloped to the door and bounced out. Her pouffy tail twitched, and she quickly bounced aside so as to be missed by a plunging Rainbow Dash.

Dash picked herself out of the hole in the ground created by her impact and groaned. Pinkie looked suspiciously at the cyan Pegasus pony.

"Um, Dash, are you okay?"

"No, I am not okay! I was clearing clouds like normal when all of a sudden along comes this dizzy mailmare and knocks me out of the sky!"

"All oky?" The voice belonged to Ditzy Doo, the grey Pegasus pony with the yellow mane and derpy expression who delivered Ponyville's mail. Not the brightest pony in the herd, she was however a warm-hearted and loving pony, especially to her little daughter. Ditzy looked as concerned as she could be about Dash, despite the fact that the rainbow-maned pony was obviously fine.

"Yes, Ditzy, I'm fine," Dash sighed.

"But you fell asleep while flying. That's bad! You know how hard it is for me to avoid collisions! But it's a lot harder when you fall asleep."

"I didn't fall asleep!" the blue Pegasus replied indignantly. "I was just… resting my eyes!"

"Okie," Ditzy smiled a cross-eyed smile. "But if you close your eyes you can't see anything, not where you're going or where you've been!"

"Sorry, I was at Luna's party last night, and then I couldn't get to sleep afterwards."

"Ooh, did Luna's spooky story spook you?" Pinkie asked, "'Cos when I was a little filly and the sun was going down…"

"No, no!" Dash answered hastily, wanting to avoid the third performance of Pinkie's song in the space of a day. "No, I just had to wind down from the party, that's all. Yeah, I had to wind down."

"Okie! It was wild," Pinkie declared. Oh, oh! Bad thing happened! A bad pony's controlling Princess Celestia and she wants to abolish parties and will you help me? I have to dash off to Sweetapple Acres, and it's so much easier to dash with you, Dash!"

"Oh, you need my help? And what do you need me to help with?"

"Well, I need to do some baking. Don't worry, you won't be baking, you'll only be helping, and..."

"Sorry, Pinkie, but I've got something else on," By which Rainbow Dash meant catching up on her sleep, but Pinkie did not need to know that. "See you around!" With that she flew off. Pinkie shook her head.

"And baking;s not so much fun alone," she brightened up as she saw who was still there. "Oh, Ditzy Doo, can you help?"

It took the grey mailmare a few minutes to get her eyes focussed on Pinkie, but when she had managed the feat she smiled.

"I'll help you with the baking if you make muffins," she said at last.

"Okie-dokie-lokie!" Pinkie replied happily

__________________________________________________

Pinkie Pie was in her element baking, Ditzy Doo not so much. The grey Pegasus' culinary abilities were basically zero, though she tried her very best to help. She ended up munching quietly on apple peelings while Pinkie sang a song about apple pies and making them.

"Oh, you've gotta have your apples in your pie!" she sang, "Apples in the pie, apple of your eye!"

"Apple in the eye?" Ditzy frowned. "That'd hurt."

"Of course it would… Why would you put an apple in your eye? That's really silly! La la la la laaa!" She put the apple pie in the oven and laughed. Hitting a dull pony in the back of the head with an apple pie sounded really, really fun and she was always up for as much fun as possible. Of course it would be dangerous, but then Pinkie laughed at danger! Actually Pinkie laughed at pretty much everything.

"You've got to giggle at the ghostie…" she began to sing again. Ditzy joined in, singing at a completely different tempo, and sometimes to a different tune altogether, and quite often with different words as well. Pinkie bounced around the kitchen, and when Ditzy tried to imitate her the grey mailmare collided with a table and ended up on her back on the floor, covered in flour. That did even less for her singing ability, and Rainbow Dash, hearing the racket, ran in prepared for the worst. When she found it was merely Pinkie and Ditzy singing the worst duet of all time, she snorted in disgust.

"Well, you could at least have had a real emergency!" Dash complained. Ditzy gave her a wall-eyed smile from her position on the floor.

"Hey, Rainbow Dash! Um… do you remember me from the Best Young Fliers Competition? I thought I was number fifteen, but I wasn't, and of course you never saw my display. I saw your sonic rainboom…."

"Ditzy, what are you doing?"

"Silly! She's helping me bake an apple pie!" Dash laughed. Of course she was! This was her friend Pinkie Pie; of course baking had led to singing! And of course Ditzy Doo and singing had led to that awful noise that she had been startled by.

"Applejack got us the apples, and then we got baking! That got a bit messy, of course, but we cleared up. Oh, this pie is so special! It's a magic apple pie!"

"A magic apple pie?" Rainbow Dash looked at the oven with a decidedly dubious expression. "Are you sure? It looks just like any other apple pie to me"

"Oh, Rainbow Dash," Twilight's voice from the doorway made Dash straighten up with a start. Magic pie, Twilight Sparkle, that made perfect sense.

"Twilight! I was looking for you. Where were you?"

"Helping with this apple pie. Luna's idea is for Pinkie to hit Joystone in the back of the head with it, but on its own that won't really help – it's more likely to irritate Joystone. What we need is to break her hold over Princess Celestia so that Celestia returns to normal. But that won't be so easy."

"So you enchanted the pie?" Dash smiled, realising that Twilight was involved in the plan as well. "Sounds dangerous, though. I mean, if this Joystone pony has some sorta control over Celestia, Pinkie could get banished to the moon or something like that."

"You can bounce really high on the moon! Whee!" Pinkie cried. "But it's sort of dull up there and has lots and lots of rocks," she added quickly, "I wouldn't like it. And my getting banished to the moon wouldn't do any good."

"Hey, you need a quick escape, I'll get you outa there in ten seconds flat," Dash declared proudly. "I'm the fastest flier in Cloudsdale, after all! Even Celestia couldn't out-fly me, and I'd like to see her guards do that in that golden armour they wear!"

"Dash, it'll be incredibly dangerous," Twilight pointed out. "Pinkie's right, if this goes wrong we could all end up being banished to the moon by a controlled Celestia."

"I can always bring you back if that happens."

The ponies were still unused to seeing Luna without her royal regalia, but Luna was fast getting used to going without it. She told herself that things were far too serious for her to worry about formality &#150 If only they could get the pie ready in time to use it before things went too far at Canterlot.

"It doesn't take long to bake a pie," Pinkie said happily. "Even a magic pie!"

"Remember, delivery of the pie is up to you – no-one else can be sure to throw it correctly," Twilight had her clipboard out again and was checking notes made on it.

"Ooh, ooh! Briefing!" Pinkie sat down and adopted a serious expression, producing a helmet from somewhere. "Tell us what we have to do!"

Twilight sighed.

"All right. Luna will get us into the castle undetected. Rainbow Dash, you will be by the closest window to extract Pinkie should things get really dangerous for her. Luna and I will reach Celestia so that when Pinkie hits Joystone we can break her control. If everything goes according to plan, we should then be safe as Celestia will be herself again. If things go wrong, then we meet back here for plan B."

"Okie-dokie-lokie!" Pinkie said happily, bouncing up and down in anticipation of the chaos she would be causing that night.

"So I get to be the back-up," Dash smiled. "Sweet!"

"Remember, you will only be needed if Pinkie fails," Twilight warned, not wanting Dash to get too over-excited and attempt to beat up a pony as dangerous as Joystone obviously was. "Everypony, remember that Joystone is obviously very good at spells of control, but like all magic they need concentration to work. That means that as long as she's off guard she's not much of a threat. But if you let her concentrate so that she can use her magic, you'll be in serious trouble."

"If you look deep into her eyes, she'll put you in trances," Pinkie agreed. "Forever!"

________________________________________________

Canterlot Castle was a marvel of engineering, literally built into the side of a mountain that towered high above the Equestrian plain. Luna's chambers were high in one of the soaring towers of the castle, and Twilight was rather intrigued by their appearance, on the one hand there was the formal side of the décor, on the other they were not very tidy, and contained many items that clashed horribly with the décor – she was glad Rarity was not there, otherwise the fashion-conscious pony would have had a fit at best, or at worst she would have tried to give Luna a make-over, something the younger princess as liable to take a real dislike to.

Twilight was glad that she knew Joystone a little. The orderly grey pony liked routine, and so her movements could be predicted almost exactly. A little magic, and Pinkie had been concealed behind a tapestry at a strategic point on Joystone's round, while Dash was on a balcony close by. That left her and Luna to get to Celestia, something that would have been easy before Joystone took control, but that now would involve a certain level of subterfuge. They could not risk going through Joystone to see Celestia because of Joystone's earlier attempt to control Luna, and so they had to take a rather unorthodox route across the rooftops of the castle. Luna's wings were a great help, but Twilight, as a unicorn, had great difficulty descending from Luna's tower to the main wall-walk that led to the roof of the Great Hall where Celestia would be.

The two ponies moved silently on the leads, carefully making their way to the location where they would enter the hall through a dormer window – one of the great advantages of the castle's architecture was that it had a lot of these little windows in unexpected places. Up above Luna's stars twinkled in the sky, and all around was peace and quiet.

Everything depended on Pinkie now, Twilight thought as she and Luna approached the hall. That was a seriously scary thought; the fate of Equestria lay in the hooves of Pinkie Pie! It definitely was not something that she wanted to dwell on for any length of time, and so instead she concentrated on the moonlight gleaming on the golden finials of the towers and the gilded ironwork that topped the ridges of the roofs.

Rarity would love this, the purple pony thought to herself; so elegant in the moonlight - just as long as she did not see the striped green roof on the south west wing. Just what Celestia was thinking when she had had that done two centuries ago perplexed Twilight, but she was sure that the princess had a good reason for it. Rarity would never see things that way; of course, she would just see the way that the colours clashed horribly. Perhaps Celestia had meant it as a joke in the first place; it was the way she did things sometimes.

_________________________________________________________

Pinkie Pie crouched silently in the recess behind the tapestry. Luna had explained how these recesses were meant to be used for storage, and Pinkie was just glad that they were big enough to store a pony in, even if it was a bit cramped.

In addition to having her pie ready for deployment, the pink party pony wore a cunning disguise consisting of a ridiculously small bowler hat, a pair of glasses with a silly nose and moustache attached and a hilarious pair of false ears. She looked incredibly silly – which was the whole point, of course. Out in the hallway a filament of silk tied to Pinkie's tail formed a trip-wire that would alert her to Joystone's presence.

Out on the balcony, concealed by the darkness and the black suit she was wearing, Rainbow Dash watched in anticipation. She smiled to herself as she heard the measured tread of Joystone's hooves on the floor of the castle corridor. Closer and closer crept the ghastly thing, she thought happily. Closer to an encounter with Pinkie's magic pie of doom – or whatever you wanted to call it.

Pinkie did not really need a trip-wire, her mysterious Pinkie-sense alerted her to the approach of the order-loving pony. She smiled, preparing herself for the spring. Joystone would not know what hit her. Well, of course she would, she'd know it was a pie, and…

"Pinkie strikes from behind! Surprise pie delivery!"

As planned, Pinkie's magically-enhanced apple pie struck Joystone squarely in the back of the head. The grey pony screamed in shock as she was showered with fragments of pastry and apple, with plenty of liquid. She was doused from ear to hoof in pie – she who loved order was incredibly messy. That was part of the magic enhancement – to make sure it properly covered her.

"Yay! Surprise!" Pinkie cried happily, bouncing around the shocked pony. She laughed, something that Joystone was unaccustomed to. "Bet you didn't see that coming! Whee!"

"I… I am Joystone! I am Princess Celestia's personal advisor!" The grey unicorn  spluttered in shock, surveying the result of the pie-throwing.

"You're covered in apple pie," Dash pointed out from the balcony. Never one to follow orders, she had not been able to resist the temptation to come inside and help Pinkie. Or to have a good laugh at Joystone's expense.

"Ooh! Dashie, be careful! She'll put you in trances!" Pinkie warned, her tone considerably less than serious. "She's a dangerous pie pony!"

"I'll give you pie!" Joystone cried angrily. She used her magic to wipe pie off her coat and hurl it at Pinkie and Dash. While Pinkie managed to dodge it, warned by her Pinkie sense, the cyan Pegasus pony had no such advantage, and screamed in shock as she was splattered with apple pie.

"Why, you…"

Pinkie laughed, producing a cream pie from no-where and throwing it with all her might at Rainbow Dash, who screamed in shock.

"Pinkie! You're meant to be throwing this goop at her, not at me! Why..."

"Here!" the pink party pony handed another to Joystone. "Get your own back!" Joystone at once hit Pinkie in the face with it and began to laugh.

"You look so silly!"

"Pinkie always looks silly," Rainbow Dash pointed out. "It's part of her being Pinkie. Now, where were we? Oh yeah, my getting my own back on Pinkie for that cream pie!"

"Food fight!" Pinkie replied happily. Soon all three ponies were throwing food around the hall without any concern for the mess they were making.

_________________________________________________________________

Luna and Twilight managed to get the dormer window open from the outside with little difficulty – Luna's magic was able to overcome even the wards that Celestia had placed on it. What was more difficult was getting through and getting down from the ceiling to where Princess Celestia was. It meant Luna getting through the window first, and then Twilight getting on her back so that they could descend together. The plan worked very well in Twilight's mind, but not for the first time she discovered that a plan that works well in the head may be a total failure in reality. She lost her balance and landed awkwardly on Luna, causing her to lose her balance, and the pair fell with twin screams of surprise to land in a most undignified manner on top of a comfortable sofa, which promptly collapsed under them.

What startled them was Celestia's laugh. The day princess looked down at her little sister and her faithful student and laughed until she wept. Luna and Twilight looked at her in astonishment.

"Oh, do you two know how silly you look? Celestia asked. "You look like the two silliest ponies in the world! And where is your tiara, Luna?"

"Tia! You… you're you again!" Luna cried happily.

"Indeed I am, Luna, someone has broken Joystone's control over me. She took me by surprise because she is not evil, she is merely mistaken – or perhaps she was mistaken," the princess added as the doors of the hall crashed open, admitting Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie and Joystone, still engaged in a food fight and all liberally covered in food. Luna laughed.

"I think I was wrong," she conceded, "I said Joystone wouldn't recognise joy if it hit her in the back of the head with an apple pie. She did. I guess it just took her being hit in the back of the head with an apple pie to recognise joy!"

"My little sister, your plan seems to have worked better than you thought," Celestia commented. "It seems that I owe you my freedom – and Joystone owes you a lesson in how to have – glub!" Celestia was hit in the face with a pie thrown by Joystone, who laughed. Luna took the opportunity to hit Celestia with a pie that Pinkie was holding.

The royal guards at the door of the hall looked through in horror and then quickly closed the door.
"Best food-fight ever!" Pinkie Pie cried happily. Joystone laughed.

"I love it!" It's so much fun! She cried. "I love food-fights!"

"And so Equestria was saved," Pinkie Pie said happily.


End
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With the exception of Joystone, all characters are the property of Hasbro
Princess Luna returns from the food fight of the century to find that an order-obsessed pony has managed to take control of Princess Celestia. With no-where else to turn, Luna brings a desperate plan to Twilight Sparkle, a plan that leaves the fate of Equestria in the hooves of Pinkie Pie!
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:iconzixinus:
Zixinus Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2012
Yes!
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:iconbedofett:
bedofett Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2012
nice. with a little tweaking, this could probably be an episode for season three.
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:iconziblink:
Ziblink Featured By Owner Sep 27, 2011  Hobbyist Photographer
A little rushed in places (It could've used being about 20% longer) but a very unique effort, heck, I could imagine a show episode like this.
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:iconevilcleric:
EvilCleric Featured By Owner Sep 16, 2011
Very nice mate. I love how Celestia was nailed in the "fact" with a pie.
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:iconjess887cp:
Jess887cp Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2011
yay! this was AWESOME! the ending was a bit rushed, but you know that already. Keep it up!
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:iconrhjunior:
RHJunior Featured By Owner Sep 14, 2011  Professional Artist
Finding it hard to like the story. When I was little my parents went hungry sometimes to make sure I was fed. I was taught better than to waste food in such a wicked manner.
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:iconmusicssound:
musicssound Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2011
Well done! Could have used a bit more exposition of Joystone's past, maybe a flashback from Twilight? And Pinkie followed the laws of physics, for the most part. Otherwise, good job!
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:iconkjh242:
Kjh242 Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2011
is good to read for a first attempt, yes!
The end did feel just a pinch rushed though, and Joystone kind of needs a bit more characterization if she's to be the antagonist. Generic placeholder villains are all well and good, but they're not great.
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:icontwilightsparkle65:
TwilightSparkle65 Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2011
ahahahahahahahaha
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:iconmegagore:
megagore Featured By Owner Sep 13, 2011
but did ditzy got her muffin? we will never know!
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