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Lie Me a River · FiM Minific ·
Organised by RogerDodger
Word limit 400–750
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Fishy Business
Sweetie Belle leaned out over the water. “Here fishy, fishy, fishy. Heere fishy, fishy, fishy!”

Scootaloo looked over from her own pole. “Anything?”

“Nope. Not yet. You?”

“Me neither. Heeere fishy, fishy, fishy.”

Apple Bloom’s ears twitched and she held up a hoof. “Quiet! Somepony’s coming.”

Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo froze, and three pairs of ears scanned the orchard like radar dishes, twitching as a crash came from among the trees.

“Quick, hide the poles!” Apple Bloom hissed. “I think it’s Applejack.”

A few moments of hasty concealment later and a trio of smiles greeted a dusty Applejack as she trotted down to the riverbank.

“So that’s where the three of you got off to. Ain't it a little late in the year to be out swimming?”

“It’s only September,” Apple Bloom said.

Sweetie Bell nodded, gesturing at the river. “Besides, we can enjoy the river without swimming. You never know what kind of cutie marks you might get.”

“Ah see,” Applejack said, looking them over critically, before her eyes landed on a nearby bush. “Y’all got a net?”

“You never know when you might need to catch a critter,” Scootaloo replied.

“Oh? And that there line?” Applejack pointed to a few glistening strands dangling from Sweetie Belle’s tail.

“You don’t like my new manestyle?” Sweetie Belle said, her lip quivering.

“That’s not exactly it.” Applejack snorted, kicking over a board. “And ah suppose those corks are leftover from the cider bottles and them weights are for a flea circus?”

The crusaders variously studied the ground or other bits of the riverbank that weren’t Applejack.

Applejack sighed and shook her head. “Look, I ain't tryin to make you girls feel bad. And I got no no problem with fish. They’re slippery buggers, but they stay in the water, and ah’m happy to leave them there, minding their own business. But ponies fishing is trouble. Apple Bloom, I told you about Yarn Spinner, right?”

Apple Bloom scuffed a hoof in the dirt. “Yeah, I’ve heard plenty of stories about Uncle Spinner.”

“Then you know that if ponies start fishing, the next thing you know they’ll be gone all day, spending lots of bits, only to come home with empty hooves and cider bottles, while swearing up and down they had loads of fish. Why the hay would you still go out and try it?”

Apple Bloom’s ears were flat. “Well, you never know what our cutie marks might be.”

Applejack sighed and shook her head. “Ponies just ain’t built to eat meat. Pegasus are the only ponies that eat ‘em, and even them it makes, uh,” she trailed off. “Nevermind.”

There was a moment of awkward silence, before Scootaloo sniggered. “Gassy.”

Sweetie Belle cocked her head. “What?”

“Fish. They make you gassy.”

Apple Bloom gave Scootaloo a look.

“What? I had them for dinner once. I had to get new bed clouds afterwards,” Scootaloo said, before looking at Applejack. “You’ve had fish, too?”

Applejack's ears were flat. “Never! Like ah said, it’s a pegasus thing.”

“Then how would you know?” Sweetie Bell interjected. “I once heard Rarity muttering about uncouth pegasi getting away with it because they were flying around and flapping their wings.”

Apple Bloom frowned. “Yeah! The only pegasus you really hang out with is Rainbow Dash, and she flies more than anypony.”

Applejack backed up a few steps, her face turning redder than Big Mac. “Uh, can’t say, gotta go... buck the rakes!” she said, turning on her hoof and bolting for the treeline.

“Hmm. Maybe our fisherpony cutie marks should wait.” Apple Bloom said speculatively, as she stared at Applejack’s retreating form.

The three fillies shared a look, before chorusing: “Cutie Mark Crusader private eyes, Yay!”
« Prev   15   Next »
#1 ·
· · >>2Merr >>horizon
I have no idea:

What this story's about. The author undoubtedly hoped that the information provided here would be enough for me to figure out what's going on, but, well, I can only say that it isn't. The writing itself is nice enough, but I'll need more hints or clues before I can even start making conjectures.

#2 ·
· · >>Posh >>horizon
>>Baal Bunny

From what I understand, it seems like AJ eats fish and is lying about it. For some reason.
#3 · 2
>>2Merr obviously, it's because everyone will assume she's a cannibal.
#4 ·
· · >>horizon
I liked the part where the CMC were hanging out and then 'defending' themselves to Applejack, but I think it fell apart when you had to justify why they needed to defend themselves in the first place. Then the premise becomes confusing. Ponies fishing leads to drinking and overspending and gas? And then AJ lies about something? What? Why? It feels like at that point the answer is 'because prompt', and I'm sorry I feel like that, but the more I think about it the more contrived it all seems.
#5 · 1
· · >>Posh
>>Baal Bunny >>2Merr >>Astrarian
This one, on the other hoof — I think I understand what it's driving at.

Applejack notes that only pegasi eat fish. Scootaloo notes that the only pegasus AJ hangs out with is Rainbow Dash, and further notes that Dash spends all of her non-sleep time flying. The implication here is that AJ is with Dash when Dash is not flying; i.e. in bed. And then AJ gets super embarrassed at the implication and leaves. So this is stealth Appledashery, and the final joke is that the CMCs pick up on that.

As far as story review ... since I did catch that implication, points for the story meeting its goals. I'm not certain I buy the lampshading for why the CMCs are embarrassed to be caught fishing, which does make most of the story feel shaky. I do like the detail of Uncle Spinner, though.

Unfortunately, my big problem was just that nothing here really hooked me. (Um, no pun intended.) The back half is solid (though you may want to listen to the crowd and try to make your implications clearer), but the front half feels like it wanders. Middle-tier in my voting.
#6 ·
· · >>Fenton
Scootaloo notes that the only pegasus AJ hangs out with is Rainbow Dash

Can't believe Applejack just snubs Fluttershy like that.
#7 ·
Nopony wants to hang out with yellow pone; nopony likes yellow pone.