Button Mash Isn't Dead

by Albi

Chapter 1: No, Seriously, He's Not


His exuberant cry of freedom rang across the dreary skies of Ponyville. The clouds had gathered and darkened the normally merry hamlet, but for Button Mash, it couldn’t have been a more beautiful day. Behind the layer of fluffy, grey wool, he could feel the sun shining down and warming his heart. Yes, nothing could ruin this day, for this was the day he was no longer grounded!

Button Mash stood on his front porch, inhaling deeply as the wind brushed across his face. It was a little chilly out, but he didn’t care. He had been cooped up so long in his room, unable to do anything but stare at the wall or… read books! Just standing in the cold wind was a welcome relief. Now he knew how princesses felt when he rescued them.

“Mom, I’m going outside!” he wailed. He slammed the door shut before she had anytime to answer and took off down the cobblestone road, the propeller on the top of his beanie spinning madly in the wind.

Having spent the first few hours of the morning playing some video games (he had gotten up a little after midnight, when his punishment had technically ended), Button now had every intention to spend the rest of the day with his friends. Maybe even grab a milkshake and a cookie at Sugarcube Corner.

As he walked across town, he couldn’t help but feel the odd sadness that was coming off the towns ponies. None of them were smiling, conversations seemed short and sullen, the entire atmosphere was somber.

Still, Button Mash smiled as he trotted through the marketplace. Grey skies and sad ponies wouldn’t ruin his day! His wandering led him to the most popular fruit stall in town, the stand run by Applejack. She was a great NPC to talk to when he wanted a quest… or to find the Cutie Mark Crusaders.

Applejack was devoid of her usual enthusiasm today. She rolled a juicy, red apple across the counter, a disinterested look in her eye.

Button put his front hooves on the stand and lifted his head so that he was eye level with her. “Hi, Miss Applejack!” he said cheerfully.

Applejack didn’t respond.

“Uhh, Miss Applejack? Are you okay.”

Applejack blinked and sighed heavily.

Button tilted his head to the side. Had she managed to go deaf while he was grounded? No, that was doubtful. Even then, she still should have seen him, he was standing right in front of her! He waved a hoof to get her attention, but to no avail.

“Ooookay, this is weird.” He got down from the counter and started to walk away. As he did, a beige colored pony with a brown mane brushed past him and stopped in front of Applejack.

“Hey, A.J,” he said glumly. “I’m guessing you heard what happened?”

As Applejack nodded her head, Button shouted, “Wait, so you can hear and see him, but not me?”

“Yeah, Caramel. Ah don’t think there’s a soul in Ponyville who hasn’t heard,” Applejack said. She wiped a tear from her eye before taking her hat off and holding it to her chest. “Poor little fella.”

Caramel nodded. “How do you think his mom is doing?”

“Ah don’t know. Ah haven’t seen her all week actually. Ah was gonna go check up on her today, actually.”

“I can only imagine what she’s going through. It’s horrible when they go so young.”

Button watched the two grown-ups share a moment of silence before Caramel bought an apple and left. Button leaned against the counter again. “What was that all about? What happened?”

Applejack continued staring off into space, oblivious to Button’s questions.

“Did I do something wrong? Is that why you're ignoring me?”


Button was starting to get irritated now. “Can you at least tell me where Apple Bloom and the others are?”

Still nothing.

“Gah!” Button threw his hooves up and stomped away. He hated it when NPC’s stopped talking to you. It was even more annoying when grown-ups did it. Luckily for him, he had a pretty good idea where the Crusaders would be.


Even the atmosphere around Sweet Apple Acres was subdued in despondency. The feeling grew stronger as Button Mash got closer to the Cutie Mark Crusader Clubhouse. As he started to climb the ladder, he could hear muffled sobbing from within.

Button tentatively pushed the door open and peeked around the corner. Inside, Sweetie Belle, Apple Bloom and Scootaloo sat around in a tight circle, a box of tissues in between them. Button had never seen them like this before. Their eyes were bright red and tear streaks matted the fur around their faces. Sweetie Belle in particular looked the worst off. She was still crying into a fresh tissue, blowing her nose before discarding it into the growing pile next to her.

“Uhh, is this a bad time?” Button asked. “I can come back later.” He was never good around crying girls.

Yet, they all seemed to ignore him. None of them even looked up to acknowledge his presence.

Button’s face hardened. First Applejack, now all of his friends? He threw the door open and marched inside “All right, will somepony tell me what’s going on? Did I enter the Twilight Realm or something?”

The three fillies didn’t so much as twitch. Sweetie Belle did, however, break into a fresh wave of tears.

“I-I-I can’t believe he’s gone!” She leaned over and cried into Apple Blooms waiting hooves.

“Ah know, Sweetie, Ah know. Ah’m real sorry.”

“I can’t believe it only happened yesterday,” Scootaloo said. “He was just here with us last week.”

“Who was here? Who’s gone?” Button scrunched his face. “Can somepony just give me an answer already?”

“And now he’s dead! Button’s dead! Why? Why?” Sweetie sobbed hysterically.

“I’m what?” Button yelled. He quickly looked himself over, checking for any fatal injuries or missing limbs. Had he been slain in the middle of the night? Had someone taken all his extra lives? He poked himself in the chest. “I’m not ghostly or anything.” He touched the wall, relieved (albeit, a little disappointed) to find that he couldn’t go through it. “Wait, I’m not dead.”

And yet, none of the fillies seemed to have heard him.

“Uh, girls? Hey, yoohoo! Sweetie Belle, I’m right here. Girls, seriously, I’m not dead, I’m right here.” When none of them responded, Button resorted to more drastic measures. He started poking Sweetie Belle.

Button’s hoof made contact, and Sweetie fidgeted each time. But the look on her face read that she didn’t register any of Button’s prodding. “You know, it’s almost like he’s still here with us.”

“Sweetie, I am still here with you. I’m standing right next to you. I’m poking your shoulder!”

“Ah know.” Apple Bloom storked Sweetie’s hair. “It’s like Ah can almost hear his voice.”

“That is my voice! I’m right here!”

“You know, when I think about it, he always sounded kinda whiny,” Scootaloo said.

Button’s face soured. “Oh yeah? Well, you’re… you’re..” He brightened up. Yes! If this didn’t get them to notice him, nothing would. “You’re a flightless pegasus and a blank flank!” he shouted.

Nothing. Not even a flinch. If this was a game, they were playing it very well.

Apple Bloom gave Scootaloo a hard look. “Don’t say things like that, Scoots. We don’t speak ill of the dead.”

I’m not dead! Seriously, I’m standing right in front of you! Apple Bloom, you’re looking right at me!” Button walked over and grabbed Sweetie by the sides of her face. “Heeellllooo? Button Mash to Sweetie Belle! Come in, Sweetie Belle!”

Sweetie stared into Button’s eyes, yet refused to acknowledge his existence. “I don’t care if he did have a whiny voice, or over-exaggerated things a lot. I thought he was nice and cute.”

“I don’t over—wait, you think I’m cute?”

Sweetie let out a lifeless sigh.

A girl thought he was cute? Him? Button Mash? “Wait, Sweetie, I am still cute, I’m right here! Go ahead, tell me I’m cute! I think you’re cute too!” Button was growing desperate now. He wanted this game to be over. To lift whatever curse was on him and be noticed again. As he looked into Sweetie’s soft green eyes, a daring idea struck him.

It has to work! It might get me punched in the face, but, at least they’ll stop thinking I’m dead!

Button puckered his lips and pulled Sweetie Belle into the strongest kiss he could muster. They stood with their faces pressed into each other, Button trying to be as passionate as he could.

It was horribly awkward.

He finally pulled away and blew a raspberry, spitting all over the floor. “Ewww, blegh! Cooties, ewww! Dad lied! That wasn’t fun at all!”

“Sweetie Belle, why were you puckering yer lips at me like that?”

Oh, come on!” Button screamed.


It was the same wherever Button went. Ponies ignoring him and continuously referencing the tragedy that was his own death. If it was any consolation, at least he knew the residents of Ponyville cared about him. Still, it was incredibly creepy what lengths they went to to disregard his presence. He had knocked over fruit stands, purposely ran into ponies, screamed at the top of his lungs, even thrown a tomato at somepony. They had blamed it on another passerbyer and it had descended into a street fight. It was almost fun to watch.


Button opened the door to his house and trudged inside, his head hanging low. He was terrified to find out if even his own mother couldn’t see him. Still, he had to try.

“Mom?” he called. He heard noises coming from the kitchen and found his mom doing the dishes. “Mom?”


Buttons ears perked up. Had… had she actually noticed him?

“Mom,” he said slowly, “could you turn around and look at me?”

Maternity turned the faucet off and turned her neck, regarding Button curiously. “What is it, sweetie?”

Button gasped. “You can see me? And hear me?”

“Yes.” She frowned. “Button, what’s the matter?”

“Everyone in town keeps ignoring me and saying I’m dead!” Button yelled, flailing his hooves over his head. “I’ve tried everything, Mom! I even kissed Sweetie Belle! Nothing!”

Maternity raised a curious eyebrow. “You kissed a girl?”

Yes, and it was horrible!”

Drying her hooves on a towel, Maternity said, “Button, are you sure this isn’t just your imagination acting up again? Remember when you told me Fluttershy was a vampire?”

“I saw fangs, I swear I did!” Button got to his knees and clasped his front hooves together. “Please, Mom, you have to believe me this time! They all think I’m dead!”

“All right, All right. Calm down. Let’s go see what all of this is about, I’m sure it’s just some giant misunderstanding.”


As Button lead his mom down to Sugarcube Corner, several of the ponies they passed bowed their heads in respect, or whispered quick condolences. He watched his mom’s expression change from faint amusement, to puzzled concern.

They reached the sweets shop and Button kicked the door open and shouted, “Heeeeere’s Button Mash!”

Maternity looked down at him. “No more watching your father’s old videos.”

Cup Cake hurried over to Maternity and patted her hoof. “Hello, dear. Oh, I’m just so sorry for your loss. If there’s anything we can do for you, just let us know.”

“Uhh…” Maternity looked from Cup Cake, to Button and back. “What ‘loss’ exactly are you talking about?”

Cup Cake took a step back with a worried expression. “Oh dear, you’re… you’re not in denial, are you?”

“Denial of what?” Maternity demanded.

“Of… Button Mash… and his untimely passing.”

Button looked up at his mom. “See? Told ya.” he deadpanned.

Maternity gaped. “Cup… you do know he’s standing right here, right?”

“Who is?”

“Button Mash.”

Cup Cake looked down to Button’s position, her eyes glossing over him. She took Maternity by the hoof and tried to lead her over to a table. “Maybe you should sit down while I get you a cup of coco, deary.”

Maternity snatched her hoof back. “I don’t need to sit down,” she said, the sweetness in her voice straining. “Button Mash isn’t dead, he’s standing right here, right next to me.” She placed a hoof on top of his head.

Behind the counter, Carrot Cake began to look extremely nervous; a look shared by the rest of the patrons in the store. “Oh dear. I’ve heard about this. It’s a type of coping mechanism,” he explained to his wife. “I don’t think she’s ready to let go of Button, so she’s pretending he’s still here.”

“But I’m not dead!”

“There, see? You heard him, didn’t you?” Maternity asked.

A cream colored earth pony and with a blue and pink mane stood up from her seat and walked over, putting a gentle hoof on Maternity’s shoulder. “Sweetie, it’s okay. I know what you’re going through. It took me a while to accept that my dog had died. But we’re all here for you.”

Maternity facehooved. “Bon Bon… all of you… I can’t even...” She took a deep breath and exhaled slowly. “Okay then. Would somepony like to tell me how he died?”

Everyone in the room exchanged uneasy looks, before all eyes fell on the back corner table.

Pinkie sat slumped over in her chair. Her normally poofy mane was limp, and there was a half-eaten cupcake next to her face. “The lake shark…” she whispered.

“Pardon me?”

“The lake shark!” Pinkie jumped to her hooves and ranted at the top of her lungs, “I saw it with my own two eyes! It was big with sharp teeth! It had a black suit and a nice tie and a briefcase!

Button stared at her. “What?”

“Poor Button was just swimming in the Ponyville lake, minding his own business, when suddenly, the lake shark jumps out of the water, and smack him over the head with his briefcase before gobbling him whole! It was awful!” Pinkie sobbed.

Button blinked. “What?”

Maternity stomped her hoof on the floor. “Pinkie, that is the most ridiculous story I’ve ever heard. Button isn’t dead!” She scooped him up and held him over her head for all to see. “Here, look at him! Look at him!”

The awkwardness in the room rose by about ten degrees.

“Mom… I don’t think it’s working.”

“Maternity,” Cup Cake said soothingly, “maybe you should come and have a lie down.”

Maternity dropped Button, who landed on the floor with an ‘oof.’ “You’re right, Button. They’re all crazy. I’m sorry I doubted you.”

Button rubbed his sore bottom. “It’s all right, Mom.” He watched his mother turn out of the story with a huff as the other ponies called out to her and insisted she stay. Button meanwhile, walked over to the back of the display case, eyeing the various sweets being showcased.

“So… you all think I’m dead, right?”

No one answered him.

“Cool. Then… I’m just gonna take some of these, okay?” When no one answered, Button took a mouth full of cookies and a cupcake and went on his way.

“Why am I spending my time outside anyway? I have video games to play,” he mumbled to himself with a mouth full of sweets.

He never saw the cart speeding towards him.

There was a horrible CRASH and Button found himself flying through the air like an angry bird. He smashed into a fruit stall, mangoes splattering against him.

Button!” He heard his mom cry. “Button! Say something! Are you all right?”

“Nnghh… still not dead.”

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