Who Is Pinkie Pie?

by Irrespective

Chapter 1: 1. - Who Is This 'Pinkie Pie' You Speak Of?

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1. - Who Is This 'Pinkie Pie' You Speak Of?

* * Ω * *

“Pardon me, Rainbow Dash,” Rarity said while walking through the market stalls, her shopping list having been put aside for the moment. “I’m not sure I heard you correctly. Are you trying to tell me you know a stallion in Ponyville, who has been here for years, but also has no idea who Pinkie Pie is?”

Admittedly, when Rainbow Dash had tackled her that morning, Rarity had hoped that her friend’s urgent need to talk about what had happened at a stallion’s house last night would be a bit more steamy. This, however, was proving to be quite unusual and just as interesting.

“He’s completely clueless,” Rainbow said while edging away from a stall loaded with ornate materials and patterns. Although, that particular shade of mauve would match Rainbow’s eyes quite nicely, and it was a shame that Rarity couldn’t wrap her colorful friend up in a design that was beginning to come together in her head. Perhaps if she added a bit more lace and frills...

“I see.” Rarity filed the dress design away in her head and focused her attention on the conversation du jour. “Why is this troubling you, if I may ask?”

“That’s just it! He’s lived here for years now! There’s no way he can’t not know who she is!”

It took a moment to translate the sentence from Rainbow-ese into plain Equish. “Perhaps... he is just pulling your tail?”

“Long Run?” Rainbow Dash gave her a long look. “The stallion you said had a face like an open book? The large print edition? And you think he’s trying to fool me?”

“I concede your point,” said Rarity. “He is far too serious to attempt such an obvious ruse. So, how did you uncover this supposed gap in his sanity?”

* * Ω * *

This was freedom.

The crisp mountain air stung Long Run’s nostrils, a forceful reminder of his proximity to Mount Canter and the turbulent, unpredictable updrafts that came with the chosen route and altitude. Most normal pegasi would simply fly around the jagged peak unless they had business in Canterlot, but the allure of the unpredictable brought him back time after time. It was a thrilling rush, a reason to really live.

He smiled with a quick pump of his wings through the icy breeze. The key to long distance flying was a combination of minimal effort, high altitude, strong winds, and a rumpload of endurance. Done in the same way that Long taught his students, a pony could fly for hours on end with only a few sore muscles to show for the effort, and he was proud of the fact that he had been aloft for the eight hours between Trottingham and Canterlot.

Granted, the tradeoff for distance was time. If he had been in any sort of a hurry, it would have been much faster to sprint across the North Celestial Sea to Manehattan and then catch a train to his final destination.

His smile settled into a contented and satisfied grin as the sun broke over the frothing, wispy clouds and filled the entirety of existence with light and warmth. Trains could never capture these unparalleled views.

For several long moments, he locked his wings into a glide and enjoyed the panoramic perfection. This unique scenic overlook was the last important milestone before he reached his humble tree house, and his slightly overworked chicken wings were beginning to cluck something fierce.

“Rest easy, gents,” he reassured Lefty and Rightster. “Home is just a dive away.”

A break in the cloud cover unveiled the dark green canopy of the Everfree Forest, and his eyes focused in on a cluster of colorful dots nestled against the northern edge. It’d been two weeks since he had seen the outwardly unremarkable village known as Ponyville, but by Luna’s left legs, he was sure delighted to see it now.

“So! You finally decided to come back, huh?”

“I’m not back yet,” he shot to the mare who had pulled up on his three. Rainbow Dash had the uncanny ability to be right there whenever he returned from a long absence, and to be honest, it was far better than returning to a cold, empty house. “I could just turn around, you know.”

“You’d better not. I’m tired of raking your leaves, taking your garbage cans out to the curb and turning your porch lights on.”

“Oh, but you do it so well!” he retorted with a cheesy grin. “Please tell me you wore that maid’s outfit I left for you. You did, right?”

“Beat me back to your tree and I’ll show you. I’ll even give you a head start.”

It was a sucker bet, but it was a well-known fact that Long Run was a sucker and that Long Run was an even bigger sucker for a mare with curves. The wager was set when he snapped his wings to his barrel, pointed his nose toward his house, and fell into a steep dive. For a few fleeting moments, Long dared to think that he had a chance at beating the best at her own game as the rush of wind screamed past his ears and tore the feeling away from his cheeks.

That hope was dashed when an earth-shattering boom came from behind and a streak of rainbow colors flooded the sky in front of him simultaneously. Equestria’s fastest flyer was still impossible to beat, but as he flared his wings and glided to the compact dirt ‘runway’ in front of his modest tree house, he vowed to never stop trying.

He couldn’t let her win that easily. Besides, the view from behind was awesome.

“Shucks, what a shame.” Rainbow Dash’s grin was the very definition of smug, and she leaned against Long’s house as he shook the blood back into his legs, one at a time. “No peep show for you.”

“So help me, I’ll get you one day,” he retorted with a few flaps of his wings to prevent cramping. “Did you get my mail?”

“Not today,” Rainbow replied. “The rest is on your coffee table. You wouldn’t believe how hard it was to get it away from Derpy. She thought I was stealing it, and was threatening to sic the postmaster general on me.”

Long pushed his flight goggles on to his forehead before reaching into the mailbox and finding it empty. “Drat, no bills to pay today. I see you also managed to not burn my house down, so I guess I have to actually pay you for your services.”

Rainbow rubbed her chin, and her grin turned lecherous. “Tell you what. You let me get some pictures of you wearing my flight suit, and we’ll call it even.”

“I think it would be just a wee bit small on me in places.”

“That’s the idea,” she said with a low cackle of delight.

“Quid pro quo, my dear,” he shot back with his own leering grin. “Maid outfit for flight suit.”

“Another time, you animal.” Rainbow waggled an eyebrow at him.

“You didn’t drink all of my imported cider again, did you?” he asked. Rainbow Dash didn’t reply, and her forehoof pawed nervously at the ground. “You did. You have a real problem, you know that? I’m going to have to call your friends together and stage an intervention.”

“Shut up! I can quit whenever I want,” Rainbow grumbled while giving the woods to her left a venomous gaze. “Besides, it’s your fault.”

“Oh, sure. Blame me,” he said as he paused at the front stoop. There was a familiar pink box on his welcome mat, neatly tied with white thread and eagerly awaiting Long’s arrival.

He chuckled slightly as he nipped the twine with his teeth and opened the box. As expected, a carrot cupcake twice the size of his hoof awaited inside, dressed in a slimming vanilla frosting and smelling of sugar and spice and everything nice. The whole thing was topped by the words ‘Welcome Back, Long Run’ in bold red letters, and he suppressed the happy sigh that wanted to escape. She never mowed the lawn and she always drank all of his cider when he was out, but he had always thought that Rainbow’s cupcake offerings were a wonderful way to formally end his business trips.

It was also darn impressive that the Cakes could fit that many letters on such a small surface. With a gentle touch, he closed the lid, unlocked his door, and placed his personal effects on the nearest horizontal surface.

“Here.” Rainbow suddenly shoved a six-pack of cider into his chest with a snort. “It’s my last case. You’re welcome.”

Long briefly wondered how and where she had gotten this precious nectar, but the ache in his wings convinced him it wasn’t worth the effort to figure out. “Thanks. Care to come in and share—” he put a hoof on the bottles and chuckled “—a lukewarm one with me?”

Rainbow shrugged, but with a small smile of appreciation on her face. “Yeah, sure. You got anything to eat?”

“I don’t know. Do I?”

Another shrug. “Depends. What can you make with green baking soda and a jar of pickles older than Granny Smith?”

He pondered this for a minute. “Weaponized trots?”

“Epic,” she snorted. “But for real.”

“Tell you what. I’ll get these in the fridge—” he rattled the bottles in his hoof “—and then I’ll head into town and get some takeout from Hào Chī’s. You want chow mein or fried rice?”

“Fried rice. Get some spring rolls, too. I came here straight from Twilight’s place and I haven’t had anything to eat all day.”

* * Ω * *

“...So then Fleetfoot gets all high and mighty, saying, ‘Ith unprofethanal to thow that much thkin in a formal thetting,’” Dash said in a precise—and terribly insensitive—impersonation of her Wonderbolt lieutenant. “She acts like she hasn’t been in Play Colt for three years running.”

Long laughed a bit from the upstairs loft, having just stepped out of the shower for a rinse with a towel wrapped around his withers. “Three years huh?” With a shake, he whisked his mane out of his eyes before cheekily adding, “So, when are you getting your centerfold shoot done?”

The reward for his sass was a pillow, lobbed at maximum velocity but with poor aim. “Yuck it up, you big birdbrain. Why in Equestria would I ever be caught lying belly down in an inch of water, trying to contort into those awkward poses?”

To be honest, Long Run couldn’t really imagine Rainbow Dash ever doing anything like that, despite his teasing and prodding. Sure, she cut a lean figure, and she had a physique that most mares would kill for, but he knew that wasn’t the kind of attention she wanted. He had known Rainbow since flight school, and from day one he had enjoyed a friendly rivalry filled with big egos and bruised wings that had grown into a genuine friendship over the years. When she moved to Ponyville, he had kept in touch with letters and occasional visits, and if he had to tell the truth, Rainbow Dash was the main reason he had decided to move to Ponyville several years ago. Even if he was only in town for a few weeks at a time.

“I haven’t the slightest,” he said with a hop and a flap down to the main level. “You’re too good for that kind of stuff.”

“Thanks for the grub,” Rainbow offered, with a hint of red on her cheeks from the praise. “You know how Twi gets sometimes.”

“Any trouble?”

“Nah, just the same old, same old,” Rainbow said with a scoff as she handed him the carton of spring rolls. “School is closed for summer break, so the girls and I are trying to convince her to just enjoy the downtime for once.”

“Yeah? How’s that working?”

“As well as it always does. She needs to get laid.”

Long clicked his hooves together and offered a crisp salute. “I am willing to do what I must for my Princess and my Country. Just give me the word, General Dash.”

“You?” Rainbow laughed as she popped open the fridge. “Right! She’d throw you out of her castle before you even set a hoof in it. Those old romance novels she reads have convinced her that she needs one of those old-timey, thee-and-thou knights that’ll thow their cloaks over puddles, write her sappy love poems, and run off into the sunset with her.”

“I can thee just as well as anypony else,” he offered as she passed him a perfectly chilled bottle of cider. “I just need to brush up on my thous, that’s all. Yea, verily yea, see?”

“Keep dreaming, Casanova. I’ll let Rarity dress me up in the frilliest dress she can think of if you somehow manage to score with Twi.”

“Well, now I have to,” he replied around a mouthful of spring roll. “You just provided me with a wonderful incentive. Maybe Rarity could help me get in with her.”

“Don’t you dare tell her about this,” Rainbow threatened while shaking a fork loaded with stir fry. “I’ll slug you into next month if you do.”

“Fine, fine. Maybe Fluttershy could help me, then, or that Pinkie Pie pony you keep telling me about. Where did you say she works, again?”

“Pinkie Pie?” Rainbow gave him a quizzical look. “Really, Long? She works at Sugarcube Corner with the Cakes. Blue eyes, poofy mane?”

He paused for a minute as he tried to place the pony with the name. “Do you mean Bon Bon?”

Rainbow’s glare switched from quizzical to annoyed. “C’mon, even you can’t be that dense. If I meant Bon Bon, I would have said Bon Bon.”

“Hey, easy there. I thought Pinkie might be one of Bon Bon’s aliases. She’s got a dozen of them.”

Rainbow started to reply, stopped, then shook her head from side to side in understanding. “Okay, I’ll give you that, but there’s still no way you don’t know who Pinkie is.”

He shrugged and took a swig of cider. “Don’t know what to tell you, then. I’ll just have to ask the Cakes who she is the next time I’m in town. What does she look like?”

Rainbow’s eye twitched. “Dude, this isn’t funny. You know I don’t like it when somepony lies about my friends.”

The tone shift in her voice was unexpected, and he leaned back a bit. Long, like every other pony, knew full well about her loyalty to Twilight Sparkle and the others, but he hadn’t been trying to push any of her buttons. “Dash, honest, I am not trying to be a jerk. I have never met anypony named Pinkie Pie in my life.”

“What?! How could you have never met her?”

“Hey, I admit that Ponyville is no Canterlot, but it’s still big enough that I don’t know everypony by name.”

“No, no. You’re not getting it. Everypony knows who Pinkie Pie is!”

“Everypony except me, apparently,” he said with a small snort. “Look, it’s okay. You have your friends, I have mine. I’ll figure out who she is eventually, it’s not a big deal. Just forget I mentioned it.”

How do you not know who Pinkie is?!” Rainbow shouted.

“Hearing you say that once more doesn’t magically make me know who she is.” Long folded his forelegs and frowned at her. “Drop it, Rainbow. I’m tired, and I really don’t want to fight over something so asinine.”

“Hey, you’re the one who’s stubbornly sticking with this.” She chewed on her bottom lip for a moment, but then brightened with a thought. “Okay. When did you move to Ponyville?”

“It was five… six? Yeah, six years ago.”

“And when you moved in, we had a ‘welcome to Ponyville’ party, remember?”

“Yeah. That was pretty fun, too.”

“Who put that party on for you?”

He shrugged. “I dunno. Applejack?”

“APPLEJACK?!” Rainbow roared. “You think Applejack did that?!”

“I never asked who did it. You all jumped out and yelled, ‘Welcome to Ponyville,’ so I thought it was just what the town did for newcomers. Besides, Applejack seems like the type to enjoy a good shindig.”

Rainbow raised a hoof, but paused. “Okay, well, yeah. She does, but she doesn’t do shindigs. She’s more of a hootenanny kinda mare. Except for that one shindig she put together for Pinkie’s birthday.”

“So she does do parties.”

Rainbow’s hooves began to rub the sides of her head. “No, not like that! She doesn’t do big parties, or welcome parties, or any other kind of party! Only Pinkie does that!”

“Okay, well, I’ll be sure to thank her once I figure out who she is,” he said with another bite, only for Rainbow to all but slam her food down. A chow mein noodle dangled from his mouth as he recovered from the start, but it went unheeded as he tried to figure out what he had done to make Rainbow so upset.

“You Pinkie Promise me you really don’t know who Pinkie Pie is?” Rainbow said in a slow and even tone.

“Dash, I’m sorry. Really, I am. I’m sure she’s a great pony, but no. I really, truly, and honestly have no idea who she is.”

She stared for several long moments, as if trying to detect the smallest amount of deceitfulness in his words or on his face. A few moments later, she snorted and glared at the wall to her right. “It’s cool. I mean, nopony knows everypony… except everypony knows Pinkie! ARGH!”

“Hey, Rainbow. C’mon.” Long held out a hoof as she pushed away from the counter with several grumbles under her breath. “Don’t leave mad.”

“I’m not mad. Something weird is going on here, and I gotta figure it out,” she said as she trotted over to the door. “I’ll see you later, Long.”

“Yeah, okay. I’ll see you, Dash.”

She was gone with one quick flap of her wings, and Long drew in a long breath. That had been a rather odd turn of events, and not at all what he had wanted to have happen. But he knew Rainbow wasn’t going to let this go, now that she had set her mind on it, so all he could do was let her work her way to the logical end of his ignorance.

With that, he stood and moved to the fridge to procure another cold one, only to find the cardboard case devoid of bottles. Or at least full ones. He had to laugh, and he shook his head slightly as he pulled the ciderless bottles out of his fridge.

“Darn it, Dash. You really do have a problem.”

* * Ω * *

“So it would seem he really has no clue at all.” Rarity mulled over the information for a moment before continuing. “You don’t suppose that he could have done something to upset her, do you?”

“Even if he did, Pinkie is not the type to hold a grudge. I mean, she even gave Discord that ‘We Forgive You for Backstabbing Us’ party after the whole Tirek thing.”

“I believe she called it a clemency party,” Rarity gently corrected.

“Whatever. The point is something weird is going on here. He’s been to a lot of Pinkie’s parties. Like, just recently, he was at the afterparty for the Running of the Leaves and I know I saw him at Pinkie’s Ponypalooza party.”

“How peculiar. Pinkie was there for both of those events, and she always tends to the needs of the party participants individually. How could he not know who she is?”

“Exactly! It just doesn’t add up!”

“I suppose the best thing to do is to speak to Pinkie Pie about the matter,” Rarity said with a thoughtful hum. “If she doesn’t know who Long Run is, then we can safely conclude that they really have never met, no matter how improbable that is. Or I’m sure you could get the unadulterated truth out of him if you wore that maid outfit that he commissioned from me, you know.”

“Wait. You made that?!” Rainbow gasped, and Rarity nodded with a giggle. “Rarity!”

“What? It seemed harmless enough, especially when he told me he was only going to tease you with it. I was hoping it might lead to something a bit more, but—”

“That’s it! I’m finding Pinkie!” Rainbow shouted as she shot into the air.

* * Ω * *

Next Chapter: 2. - I Have No Idea Who You're Talking About Estimated time remaining: 3 Hours, 24 Minutes
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