[MLP:FiM] Scootatitle (Twilight, CMC/Scootaloo, Zecora)


Well-Known Member
Scootasynopsis: Following a potion mishaps at Zecora's, the Cutie Mark Crusaders accidentally spread a highly-contagious magical curse. It's an incredibly mundane, banal and tame joke-magic curse, but in Ponyville, that's enough to set ponies off in a Scootariot.

Written experimentally, with a premise but no planning, so the plot was written wherever the characters took it.


“Scooty-loo, where are you?!”

The call died out on the gentle morning breeze, as the speaker sank her head into a large bush. 

“She’s not in here, either! Where could she have gone?”

“It’s no use, Apple Bloom,” Sweetie Belle said as she came up to her friend and fellow Cutie Mark Crusader. “You know Scootaloo’s going to go all-out when it comes to hide-and-seek!” 

“Grr, that Scootaloo! Couldn’t she at least make it possible for us to find her?” Apple Bloom angrily stomped the ground with a hoof as hard as she could, recoiling at the sudden sting of the impact. “Ow!”

Sweetie Belle giggled, even though she knew she shouldn’t laugh at her friend’s misery. “You just want to go to Zecora’s today before the sun goes down.”

“Got it in one,” Apple Bloom said, blushing at how easily she was found out. “It won’t happen if we don’t find Scootaloo, and fast!”

“Don’t worry, Apple Bloom, I know just a way to get her quick,” Sweetie Belle said, eyes full of mischief. Raising her head to the sky, she made a good impression of an avian warble. “Squawk, squawk, Scootachicken, where are you?!”

“For the last time, I am NOT A CHICKEN!”

Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle both practically incurred whiplash with how quickly their heads turned around to find a bush laying in the middle of the field.

“Erm, I mean…IGNORE ME! I’m just your good old friendly neighborhood talking bush.”

The two Crusaders gave the bush their best deadpan stares.

“I guess you’re not buying it, huh?”

Apple Bloom furiously nodded her head. “I’ve found you, now let’s go to Zecora’s, let’s go, let’s go, leggsgo!”

“Alright, sheesh,” Scootaloo said as she emerged from the bush, stray leaves buried in her fur. With a quick shake of her body, she managed to remove most of the debris and bits of dirt from her orange coat. “What do you even want to do at Zecora’s? Potion-making again? The last time you tried that you blew everything up!”

Apple Bloom stuck her tongue out. “Well, you can remain here if you’re going to be a Scootascaredy-cat!”

The response was instant, as Scootaloo’s wings sprung up in a passive-aggressive show of indignity. “I am not scared! And stop using my name  as a joke! I’ll give you a smackdown if you say that again!”

“A smackdown?” Sweetie Belle whispered to Apple Bloom. The whisper was deliberately loud enough for Scootaloo to overhear. “Knowing her, it’ll be a Scootasmackdown!”

Sweetie Belle and Apple Bloom giggled at that, leaving Scootaloo frowning as they made their way out to the Everfree Forest.


Once upon a time, the Everfree Forest had seemed menacing, its dark canopies keeping out most of the light during the day. The few cleared paths could prove treacherous at night, the moonlight utterly incapable of touching the forest floor. Then Nightmare Moon had returned only to be purified by the Elements of Harmony in the castle at the forest’s heart, and it seemed as if the Everfree was getting less dangerous every week. At the rate it was going, it would be so safe that a random pony could cut through the forest without a worry.

The Cutie Mark Crusaders, however, didn’t have such worldly thoughts on their mind as they navigated the forest, the experienced Apple Bloom guiding her two friends through. In part, this was because when they decided to go crusading, they were more terrifying than most of what the forest had to offer. 

But mostly it was because they were still fillies who hadn’t quite passed their first decade of life. For the three Crusaders, whether or not they had enough money saved up for ice cream was a more pressing issue than the long-term sanitisation of the Everfree Forest.

“You sure know your way around here,” Sweetie Belle commented to Apple Bloom, who had pointed out landmarks that indicated the direction of Zecora’s hut.

“I’ve come here plenty of times to visit Zecora,” was the response.

Sweetie Belle shrugged, and she said, “Well, makes sense.”

Some of the signs were baffling to Sweetie Belle, as if the insane logic that pervaded the ripening of Zap Apples was present here as well. While Apple Bloom used the grove of turnips as an indicator to head right, Sweetie Belle was more interested in why the turnips made a croaking sound. The same applied to following the river that flowed upstream.

She supposed she should stop thinking about these things. Doing so made Sweetie Belle’s head hurt worse than when she ate her ice cream too quickly and got brain freeze.

The three continued to walk along, making sure to follow Apple Bloom’s directions, at one point trampling nuisance plants underhoof before they could grow and become a real menace. At last, they arrived at Zecora’s hut.

“This is much more awesome than the library!” Scootaloo said, practically gushing with enthusiasm.

“You say that pretty much every time you come here,” said Apple Bloom.

“And I’ll keep saying it until it’s not more awesome than the library.”

"Oh, and how would the library be made to be awesomer?"

"That's not a word," Sweetie Belle said, only to be ignored.

"Stock more comic books, for one! Uh, paint it in the colours of the rainbow too, I guess."

Apple Bloom just rolled her eyes. Of course Scootaloo would think that.

"Oh, Apple Bloom, you and your friends are here! Come in, little ones, have no fear!" Zecora, the local zebra inhabitant of the Everfree, said as she exited and saw the three fillies.

"Wow Zecora, looks like you're really busy today!" Apple Bloom commented as she led her friends inside, seeing not one, not two, but three cauldrons set up and in active use.

"The summer solstice approaches soon, I must stir all three at high noon," Zecora said as she peered into the concoctions brewing in the cauldrons, checking to see they were all coming along nicely.

"What does that mean?" Scootaloo asked, taking a sideway glance at Apple Bloom.

Apple Bloom knew that look. Scootaloo had a difficult time deciphering Zecora's rhymes, and so it was up to her explain the zebra's methods. "Some potions need to be brewed at a specific time to get the right effect. If you don’t, the potion won’t work, or sometimes it will, with a really bad result!”

“Oh. You mean like that time we accidentally brewed the love poison instead of the love potion?” Sweetie Belle asked.

Apple Bloom shook her head. “No, we brewed that correctly, we just brewed the wrong thing. Imagine if we brewed according to the recipe for the love potion, did one step wrong, and got the same effect as the poison.”

“Ooooh,” Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo chorused in unison.

“This love poison incident I have heard about before, I hope you three get up to mischief no more,” Zecora said, her disapproving tone enough to communicate what she thought of that story. The three fillies wilted as one under her scolding. “But enough of that, high noon soon approaches, I must add the powdered roaches. Please, children, play inside to your heart’s glee, but for the next few minutes, you absolutely must not distract me!”

“We won’t,” said the Cutie Mark Crusaders, as they huddled down in a corner.

“I wonder if we could get our potion brewing marks!” Scootaloo said excitedly.

“Maybe not,” said Sweetie Belle, feeling ill as she thought back to the Hearts and Hooves Day incident.

“Yeah, Sweetie. I’ve seen you try to cook. If you tried to make lunch, you’d probably end up putting two slices of bread around Scoots and making a Scootasandwich!” teased Apple Bloom.

“That’s not funny,” Sweetie Belle said, huffing as she sat down on her haunches, crossing her front hooves over her chest.

“Is it me, or are you guys using my name for a lot of words today?” Scootaloo asked, frowning.

“Not words, Scootawords!” Apple Bloom said, eliciting a giggle from Sweetie Belle, erasing the frown on the unicorn’s face. 

Scootaloo, however, made a face, showing precisely what she thought of her Earth pony friend’s remark. If that weren’t enough, her wings started buzzing, giving the pegasus enough lift to hover a foot off the ground.

“Aww, we’re sorry, Scoots,” Apple Bloom hastened to say. “We’re just teasing.”

“Fine,” Scootaloo grudgingly said, and her wings stopped beating as she lowered the ground. Scootaloo opened her mouth to say something more, only to be interrupted.

“Down, children!”

Sweetie Belle didn’t know what knocked her down to the ground, but she had no time to dwell on it as there was a loud BOOM!

She felt her fur get wet, and squeezed her eyes shut as her face was suddenly in front of a mass of something. Her muzzle and nose identified it only a few seconds later as someone’s fur. Having gone through so many incidents that resulted in tree sap, Sweetie Belle was quite familiar with the texture, length and coarseness of her friend’s coats, and this was not either of them two. That only left Zecora in the hut.

Unfortunately, she was also about to sneeze.

“Ah-ah-ah—” And then Zecora moved away and Sweetie Belle was free to sneeze, “AH-CHOO!”

The sneeze came with such force that Sweetie Belle would have taken a step back, were she not buried under her two friends. It took her a few seconds for her eyes to clear and the tingling pain in her limbs to stop, but once she was able to see again Sweetie Belle had to do a double-take.

“Oh no, Zecora! What happened?” Apple Bloom asked, as she too surveyed the scene. All three cauldrons were tipped over, spilling into a small depression in the floor the zebra had created in the event of a spill. The mixture of the three fluids was an interesting shimmering dark blue, with a little bit of visible water vapour coming off.

“I do not know, I am just glad it did not blow,” Zecora said, clearly rattled. “One of the cauldrons reacted too early, the brew went wrong somewhere surely.” Looking herself over, she saw little specks of green and blue. “Stay here children and do not leave, there may be side-effects I do believe.”

Moving away from the three foals, the zebra quickly stepped over into a small little alcove, the purpose of which Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle quickly realised as water rushed down from a little faucet above it.

“What’s going on, Abby?” Scootaloo asked.

“She’s decontaminating herself,” Apple Bloom explained. “Sometimes these potions have magical effects even if you get one single drop on you. The same goes for the poison joke, even the slightest interaction will do it. If you wash yourself with treated water soon enough it’ll stop most, but not all effects.”

“Oh,” said Scootaloo. “Hey, did we get anything on ourselves?” The young pegasus filly took the opportunity to look herself over, searching for specks of colour outside of her normal orange and purple.

“I don’t think so,” Apple Bloom said as she looked herself over as well, then carefully examined Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo in turn. “No, it doesn’t look like it.”

“Whew. Well, that’s a Scootarelief,” Sweetie Belle said.

“Hey! I thought we agreed to stop it with those jokes,” said Scootaloo, frowning.

“Sorry, sorry,” Sweetie Belle apologised. “That one just slipped out.”

“Well, try not to do it again, please and thank you,” Scootaloo said.

“Come, children, turn around for me please, I need to test you with these,” said Zecora as she left the shower. While the zebra had water dripping from her fur, she seemed far more composed now. In the brief journey from her shower to the Cutie Mark Crusaders, Zecora had grabbed a pair of vials of grey liquid.

“What’s in there, Zecora?” Apple Bloom asked.

“These are strong potions of indication, though they still have their limitation. Rub a few drops of it into your mane, and knowledge of any inflictions you will soon gain. Should the fluid turn white, then your future is bright. These are rare and brewed under a full moon, so please do not waste any soon.”

It took all three fillies several seconds to decipher precisely what Zecora said, but they were quickly willing. “OK!” Scootaloo said. “Let’s do it!”

Zecora nodded, carefully opening the tip of one of the vials. Slowly, she slipped a few drops onto each of the fillies’ manes, then on her own hair in turn, before finally corking the vial again. Putting the two vials back, she turned over to the Crusaders, and sighed in relief. “White the drops are on your mane, I am glad my efforts to shield you were not in vain.”

“Zecora, the drops on your hair are white, too,” Apple Bloom pointed out.

The zebra looked over to where Apple Bloom had pointed. Zecora examined it to make certain it was the actual drops and not the natural white part of her hair. Satisfied, she said, “I am glad, for any side-effects will not be bad. Do not think nothing will have changed, little filly, for there may still be interesting phenomena, less bad than silly.”

“What?” Scootaloo asked.

“She means the potion might’a done something to us, except it’ll be something silly, like maybe our burps will sound like music,” said Apple Bloom. "Like if when Applejack and her friends were cursed by the Poison Joke, if they were more funny than mean-spirited.


Zecora looked the three fillies over. “While I see nothing that will give me no rest, I will still be escorting you out of the forest.”

Apple Bloom looked a little disappointed, but didn’t protest. She genuinely liked tracking her way in and out of the Everfree Forest on her own using the odd signs. However, Zecora had a point, and so Apple Bloom acquiesced to the zebra’s words.


Zecora felt a profound sense of relief as the four finally broke the edge of the forest cover, and held a hoof up to her eyes. Living in the Everfree for so long, she was unused to the intensity of the midday sun without any trees to filter it out. “Children, I bid you good day and adieu here, for I cannot leave my potions too long I fear.”

“Aww. Thanks anyways, Zecora. Can I come visit you again tomorrow?” Apple Bloom asked.

The zebra smiled at her. “You are always welcome Apple Bloom, in my home, for you there will always be room.” She gave one last nod to the three fillies. Turning to leave, she called out, “Take care, my little fillies three, and do not get covered again in Scootas—, er, sap from a tree!” Zecora brushed off her little word lapse as she headed back into the forest. She was still shaken from the potion exploding earlier, and it was not uncommon for her to stutter when thrown out of sorts.

Sweetie Belle made a face at that. “Why does everypony always mention that?” She asked in a whining tone.

“Who cares? We’ve got the rest of the day still. Let’s go on a Scootadventure!” Scootaloo said, only to bring her hoof up to her mouth, surprised at what she had just said.

“Even you’re making the Scootajokes now, Scootaloo,” Apple Bloom teased.

“I don’t know where that came from, honest,” Scootaloo said. She let out a huff and started walking away towards Ponyville. Sweetie Belle and Apple Bloom shared bemused glances with one another before following after Scootaloo.

They quickly caught up with the orange pegasus as they came into Ponyville. The three were greeted as they moved into the town proper.

 “Oh, hello Scootaloo, Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle.” The pony who greeted them was familiar to the trio, being their elementary school teacher, Cheerilee. “How are you doing today?”

“We’ve been good. We played some hide-and-seek this morning,” Sweetie Belle said, beaming at her teacher. Sweetie Belle loved her teacher. Though Cheerilee seemed a little soft at times at disciplining certain troublemakers in their class that Sweetie Belle detested, Sweetie Belle wouldn’t trade her teacher for any other in the world.

“Oh, well, that’s good. Have you finished your homework for next week? I take it you haven’t, Apple Bloom?” Cheerilee asked as she saw the young filly wrinkle her nose up in disgust.

“No, Miss Cheerilee,” said Apple Bloom. She had learned the value of honesty since the last time she had lied about her homework.

“Well, make sure you get it done before the end of the weekend,” Cheerilee chided her. However, the purple-coated pony quickly shifted gears, smiling down at her three pupils. “You don’t have to Scootarush, though. Go ahead and enjoy the rest of your day. You three won’t be getting any younger.”

“We will,” the Cutie Mark Crusaders chorused in unison, quickly running off again before Cheerilee changed her mind again about their homework.

Scootaloo frowned as she kept pace with her friends.  “Did you girls hear Miss Cheerilee say that?”

“What, you mean dropping a Scootaword? Everypony seems to be doing it today. Scootawords are the next best thing!” said Apple Bloom.

“I thought we had this Scootadiscussion before,” Scootaloo said. Her ears twitched. “Oh great, now you have me doing it again.”

“We’ll have to write our own Scootadictionary,” Sweetie Belle said, giggling as they continued into Ponyville, reaching the main square.

“What’s that about a dictionary?” Their conversation was interrupted by yet another pony eavesdropping on them.

The Crusaders turned around and saw that it wasn’t a pony who had interrupted them, but instead a small dragon. “Oh, hello Spike. We just came in from Zecora’s. Do you know where Twilight might be?” Apple Bloom asked.

“Hmm, let’s see,” Spike said, bringing up a claw to his chin and stroking it. Scootaloo watched the claw, fascinated with the mannerisms Spike had using his claws. She could never stroke her chin, or squeeze her muzzle in between two claws, or scratch her ear with a claw. Scootaloo had her hooves, yes, but they simply weren’t as versatile as claws in communicating body language. “Well, I think she’s still in the library. What did you need from her?

“We had a potion accident. Zecora tested us for side-effects. She said there weren’t any harmful side-effects, but her test wasn’t good enough to say if there were any. For all we know, we might have something like that we can’t taste anything sweet for the next day until it wears off,” Apple Bloom said, making a face showing what she thought of that possible side-effect.

“Oh no. Nothing like the poison joke, I hope?” Spike asked, suddenly backing away.

“Relax. I doubt it’s contagious if we have anything,” said Apple Bloom. “‘sides, the poison joke was harmful. We might not even have anything at all. Maybe that potion just fizzled out, but it never hurts to check with Twi, y’know?”

Spike had a moment of comprehension. “Ah, true. Well, unless she’s gone out, I left her in the library. That reminds me, I went out to get an emergency supply of quills, so I better be going. You girls take care and don’t get any sap into the books, it took me hours to clean it all up last time,” he warned.

“We won’t,” Scootaloo said. “What do you think we are, a bunch of troublemakers?”

The baby dragon decided there was valour in not answering that all, lest they catch him out on the obvious lie. Instead, he turned and continued walking to the Quills and Sofa store, grumbling under his breath, “I bet I’ll come back to the Scootalibrary, and there’ll be a giant Scootamess…”

The three ponies he left behind didn’t hear him, instead continuing on their merry way to the local library, housed in a giant living tree that had been hollowed out long ago.

Besides Spike the Dragon, there was another resident who lived in the library full-time. Her name was Twilight Sparkle, and she was a pony who had gotten into a few magical mishaps in the past, leaving the Cutie Mark Crusaders a little wary of her. Fortunately, to the best of Apple Bloom’s knowledge, any experiments Twilight Sparkle got up to were performed in a basement sublab instead of on the living tree’s main level. As such, the trio entered without fear of interrupting something, unlike the precautions Apple Bloom would have taken in the Everfree had Zecora not been there to meet them outside her own tree home.

“Oh, hello girls,” Twilight greeted them as they came in. She was very obviously reading a book, and it was a thick one. “What can I do for you today?”

“We were wondering if you had any spells to check if we have any magical effects on us,” Sweetie Belle asked, before launching into an explanation of their morning thus far.

“Hmm,” Twilight looked thoughtful as she went up to a wall, quickly scanning the shelf carved into the tree. “Aha, here we go, ‘Psychic Pinkie’s Petty Pranks and Potential Panaceas’, a list of herbal remedies and magical counterspells to detect and neutralise any low-level curses. Well, if you have something it won’t be a curse, if the potion Zecora used to test you three was what I think it was, but it should still work. It’s easiest to call it a curse though, most ponies won’t really understand the difference between a curse and a prank-charm.”

“Wait, ‘Psychic Pinkie’?” Scootaloo asked. “Like, Pinkie Pie? Is Pinkie related to the author?”

“I...don’t know, honestly,” Twilight trailed off, unsure. “Well, I doubt it. Ponies can have similar names, so it’s probably just a coincidence. No, never mind that, can you three please hold still for a few seconds? It won’t hurt or anything. At the worst, there should be just a mild tingle.”

Scootaloo, Sweetie Belle, and Apple Bloom traded nervous looks with one another, recalling the Want-It-Need-It incident. However, they decided it was better to be safe than sorry with knowing if the potion had affected them in some way, harmless or not, and so they nodded.

Twilight licked her lips. “OK, here we go,” she said, and then she cast, a light pink wave of magic emanating from her horn across the three fillies.

Twilight was right, it does tingle, Scootaloo thought, and then the sensation was gone.

The older mare raised an eyebrow. “Hmm, that’s weird.”

“What is it?” Scootaloo asked.

Twilight shook her head to clear her thoughts. “Oh, it just seems odd. There is some sort of magic clinging to you three. It’s mildly contagious, and should clear out within an hour, I think. It only seems to affect verbal communica—”

“Twiliiiiiii—” The cry was punctuated by a blue blur flying through the open window, and crashing into the wall. The rest of the cry finally caught up with Rainbow Dash, sound travelling slower than the pegasus herself. “—iiight.”

“Oh, what now?” Twilight asked, rolling her eyes as she felt in her bones that it was going to be one of those days again.

Rainbow Dash seemed to recover stunningly quick, grabbing Twilight by her front hooves. “Twilight, Twilight, we Scootahave a Scootamergency!” The pegasus looked around, and spotted Scootaloo. “Scootasquirt, what did you do?!”

“What? What are you Scootatalking...about…” Sootaloo trailed off as she realised what she had said.

Instantly, all five ponies tried to talk at once. There was really no hope of any of them getting a word in edgewise.

Fortunately, they got a distraction, in the form of another pony hopping in through the open window. “ScootaTwilight, we got a funny Scootaspell on us, teeheehee!” Pinkie said as she managed to somehow clear the high jump required to get in from the ground. The pink Earth pony immediately saw Scootaloo, and continued, “Oh, Scootaloo, I Scootawonder if ScootaScootaloo, oh so that Scootadoes work, maybe we’ll get a Scootaception!”

“Pinkie, you need to—” Twilight was about to interrupt, only to stop as she heard the cries of ponies panicking outdoors. She rolled her eyes. “Great, what Scootanow, oh for Celestia’s Scootasake, now I’m doing it!” Twilight cast a counterspell on herself, dispelling the mischievous magic as best she could. No longer feeling the alchemical charm lingering on her, she relieved. “That’s better. Now, let’s see...well, at least it’s not the parasprites again.”

Looking outdoors just gave her a headache. Ponies were running around, flailing like crazy, occasionally smacking into each other. Twilight could see the three flower mares on the ground, twitching as they went “The Scootahorror, the Scootahorror!” 

“It’s just a verbal-based magic that’ll wear off in a few hours. Why are they in such a panic?! All the ponies in this town are crazy!” Twilight ranted.

“Uh, ScootaTwi, could we Scootaget some of the magic, pleeeeease?” Sweetie Belle begged, having finally realised what was going on.

“Oh, right,” Twilight said, turning around only to facehoof as she saw Rainbow Dash flying around in a panic, dragging Scootaloo with her. Pinkie, for whatever reason, appeared to be going along with it, copying Rainbow Dash. Twilight Sparkle sighed. She loved her friends, but some day these ponies would drive her to drink.

Quickly, she used her magic, stopping the other five ponies in the room in their tracks, then used the same spell as earlier to dispel the weird verbal-affecting spell on them. “Are we done yet?” Twilight asked, frowning as she crossed her front hooves.

“I, uh, it’s really bad out there, Twilight, really bad, and—hey, I can talk normally again!” Rainbow Dash said, bringing her hooves up to her throat. She looked relieved. “Thank good, that was totally not cool!” She then collapsed over. The others looked her with apprehension, only for some of the tension to leave the room as Rainbow Dash started snoring, still lightly gripping onto Scootaloo.

“Teehee, I thought it was pretty Scootacool,” Pinkie Pie said.

As one, five heads snapped towards the party pony.

“Oh, that was just me,” Pinkie said with a smile, hopping around with a frantic energy once more.

“Just Pinkie being Pinkie,” Twilight said about the bubbly pony. She turned her eyes to the Crusaders, who fidgeted under her eyes. “Alright, so I think I have it figured out. This magic seems to be almost ‘irony-based’ for lack of a better term, like how the Poison Joke made my horn all floppy or made it tough for Rainbow Dash to fly. Only it’s fairly benign, unlike the Poison Joke, otherwise it would have triggered a different reaction with our tests.”

The sound of a stand being knocked over in the market outside rang through the air.

Twilight rolled her eyes. “OK, normally it would be benign, if these ponies didn’t panic over the littlest things.”

“I blame you two for this. Totally all your fault,” Scootaloo said, turning to Sweetie Belle and Apple Bloom.

“Hey, what are you throwing us under the chariot for?!” Apple Bloom protested.

“You were the one who started it this morning. I bet this joke magic is just making us say all these, these Scootawords!” Scootaloo said.

Next to her, still tightly gripping Scootaloo, Rainbow Dash shivered. The pegasus still hadn’t gotten over the trauma of her words coming out with an extra prefix. 

“What are you talking about?” Twilight asked, having overheard them and now curious about how the joke magic might have ended up the way it did.

“This morning, we were playing hide-and-seek,” Scootaloo explained. “They kept making up words like Scootachicken and Scootascaredy-cat and Scootasandwich and Scootasmackdown. I told them to stop it, and they didn't, so now it seems this joke magic thing is making everypony do it!”

“Oh, oh, I know! Maybe it’s because using the first two syllables of your name is a popular thing to do, like Scootabuse and Scootalone and Scootaorphan!” Pinkie Pie said, popping up again suddenly. “Well, all those sound really meanie nasty mcmeannastypants words to say, those just sound Scootasad, but Scootalove sounds much better, so I’ll give you my super-special Scootahug riiiiight now!” Pinkie didn’t even stop to breath before she scooped Scootaloo out of Rainbow Dash’s hooves, and embraced the filly.

Scootaloo was completely baffled by Pinkie Pie’s whole run-on rant, but she returned the hug. It felt good, Scootaloo decided. Despite Pinkie’s randomness, right now the pink party pony felt like comfort and safety. “Thanks Pinkie,” she whispered.

“You’re welcome, Scootaloo,” Pinkie whispered back, nuzzling the smaller pony.

“Well, it’s not like we have to worry about it for much longer. It looks like a contagious spell-virus, but it’ll wear out after a few hours,” Twilight said, rubbing her hoof against her head. “C’mon girls, let’s head outside. I only just had lunch and it’s already been one doozy of a...Scootaday.” The mare offered a tepid giggle to show it wasn’t a magic-induced word.

Four ponies laughed as they walked out. Twilight took a brief second to look over Rainbow Dash, who was still catatonic. After verifying the pegasus was just in a Scootadaze, Twilight walked after the Cutie Mark Crusaders and Pinkie Pie.


They were quickly met by Zecora. The zebra seemed to have rushed back out from the forest, as she was visibly panting. 

“Oh, hello Zecora,” Twilight greeted her. “Let me guess, you’re affected as well?”

Zecora nodded. She seemed hesitant to speak, then exhaled deeply and said, “Hello, and good Scootagreetings to you at this time of great Scootaradiance, although I fear this curse seems to be messing up my Scootarhyme and cadance.”

“I have a counterspell if you want it,” Twilight offered.

Zecora nodded her head again, this time frantically. Twilight was quick to oblige her, and Zecora sagged in visible relief after. “A most odd side-effect the potion caused, though with your magic it has paused.”

“Should I maybe go back inside?” Scootaloo suddenly asked. “Rainbow Dash thought I was responsible, and I guess we were the ones who brought it into town.”

Twilight thought about Scootaloo’s question. Then she shook her head. “No, I think you’ll be good. The curse, spell, joke magic, whatever it was should be running out soon. I’ll try to dispel it on whoever’s still suffering from it as we head around town and inform everypony what happened, so they don’t think we’re under attack for the fifth time this week.”

“Aww, you should’ve left me alone Twilight,” Pinkie whined. “I would’ve had such a fun Scootadventure! Scootamaybe Scootaevery Scootaword Scootaout Scootaof Scootamy Scootamouth Scootacould Scootahave Scootastarted Scootawith Scoota ScootaScootaprefix!”

Twilight’s jaw dropped. She rubbed her head for what felt like the umpteenth time that hour. I don’t have time for this. Perhaps it’s time for the trump card I've been saving for months. “Psst, Pinkie, come here,” Twilight motioned to Pinkie Pie in a conspiratorial whisper.

“Oh, what’s that?” Pinkie asked.

“Let me tell you a secret,” Twilight said in as loud a whisper she could muster. “Did you know that thanks to the many definition of the word ‘buffalo’, you can say it as many times in a row as you want and it’ll still be a grammatically proper sentence?”

Pinkie Pie’s mane and tail, and her eyes went wide with delight. “Oh my gosh, really?”

“Yes, really,” Twilight affirmed. “Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo works, but it can also be said a hundred times in a row, maybe even a thousand. Why don’t you go, uh, find Trixie? I bet she’d be thrilled to hear it!”

“You’re on!” Pinkie Pie said. Suddenly, she hopped away, but instead of landing on her feet, she landed on her tail. Her tail acted like a pogo stick, springing Pinkie Pie back up for her next hop, and the crazy Earth pony was suddenly out of sight with a high jump that cleared the clouds.

“Oh, finally. Sorry Trixie, but you’re going to have to suffer for that. I don’t think I could take anymore Pinkie today,” Twilight said.

“My sister still wakes up screaming in the night about cherrychimichangas,” Sweetie Belle pointed out. “Are you sure that was a good idea?”

Twilight hoof-waved the question away. “Trixie spent several months working on the Pie family rock farm. If Pinkie’s sisters are anything like Pinkie, Trixie will be used to it.”

“OK, as long as you’re sure,” Sweetie Belle said, nervous.

The remaining four ponies and zebra went around, quickly pacifying the townsponies with Twilight using her magic, though Scootaloo and the other Crusaders received a few dirty looks in the process. Fortunately, it passed. Ponyville was used to oddball antics occurring on a weekly basis, and having something as mundane as unintentionally adding a silly prefix to the occasional word was on the low-end of weird. 

By the time they got out of the town square, the number of ponies that were under the effects of the verbal-based magic decreased, as the joke spell wore off. The spell appeared to have been highly contagious, taking a little while for the symptoms to surface, but wearing off just as quick. 

“I wonder why my brother was the only one not affected,” Apple Bloom said as the Cutie Mark Crusaders returned to the library, following Twilight. Zecora had since departed, intending to actually get home this time.

“Maybe because he barely speaks in the first place?” Scootaloo suggested.

Sweetie Belle added, “Yeah, I can see him going ‘Scoota-yup’ and ‘Scoota-nope’ instead of his normal words.”

“Seriously girls, enough of that,” Scootaloo pleaded. “I’m going to have enough teasing from Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon over the next few weeks.”

“I have to agree with Scootaloo,” Twilight said as she opened the door and let the three fillies in, after making certain Rainbow Dash wasn’t still passed out on the library door. Once all of them were inside, she broke into lecturing mode. “Once or twice is fine between friends. Something that could be hurtful between strangers is alright if you take it in good humour, but when Scootaloo asked you to stop, you should have.”

“You’re right,” Apple Bloom said. She turned to Scootaloo. “I’m sorry, Scoots. Me and Sweetie Belle should have stopped after you asked the first time. Instead, we kept going at it, and I guess that’s what the potion did to us.”

“Yeah, I’m sorry as well,” Sweetie Belle said, genuine tears in her eyes.

Scootaloo folded her front legs in front of her as she sat on her haunches. She looked a little peeved. Then she mustered a smile, sad as it looked. “That’s alright, Abby, Sweetie, I forgive you. Just try not to do it again, please? Otherwise, I’ll have to call it, uh...I’ll have to make horribelle, appleling puns at you instead.”

The three let out a shared nervous laugh at the bad wordplay Scootaloo had just let loose on the other two.

Twilight smiled, glad that was over, and that the Crusaders had learned one more minor lesson about making fun of others. They truly were on their way to becoming mares. “Oh, Scootaloo. That reminds me.”

“Yeah, what?”

“I keep daily logs of events around town. I hope you won’t mind if I call this something like, I don’t know, maybe the Scootaincident?”

Scootaloo wrinkled her nose. “That’s a horrible Scootatitle.”

“Maybe the Scootahappening? The Scootaning?”

Scootaloo just shook her head. “Wow, you really are terrible at this, aren’t you?”

Twilight bit her tongue, refraining from giving Scootaloo a verbal lashing. Part of it was because Scootaloo was a filly, and the other part was because the orange filly was right, they were terrible titles.

“Well, I’ll come up with something better,” Twilight promised Scootaloo. “I don’t have anything else to say, so you can go home. Oh, thank you for actually coming here right away earlier today, though! Even if it was a harmless, well, mostly harmless event, I’m glad you made the effort to make sure. If only others were so forthcoming, then things wouldn't get out of hoof so much around here.”

“Like my sister, you mean?” Apple Bloom asked.

“Yes, like your sister,” Twilight said, sounding exasperated. That pony is more stubborn than a mule.

Uh, no offense, Twilight thought, habitually looking to her side before remembering that she had been thinking that, not saying it aloud.

Later, as Twilight would sit down and write out the events of the day, along with trying to come up with a clever and witty name, she frowned. Am I forgetting something? I’m pretty sure I’m forgetting something. She shrugged. “Eh, whatever it is, probably not a big deal.”


“—and then I said, oatmeal, are you crazy, and then the Saiyan said, I’m just sayin’, and then the buffalo said, buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo—”

Trixie had listened and put up with the pink pony trotting right alongside her for a good half hour before she had the sense to summon up some earplugs in. With some morbid fascination, Trixie wondered where the last Pie sibling found all the air to talk for as many minutes straight as she did before taking another breath. Trixie had made the mistake of taking her earplugs out for a few times to listen to Pinkie again, only to find that that she was still on the same sentence, and still dropping in a bunch of inane anecdotes about buffalo for some reason.

The unicorn sighed wistfully. “I miss the Scootarock farm.”


Author's Notes

I wrote this story experimentally: I had the basic premise of a curse that makes ponies start saying words with a 'Scoota-' prefix, but absolutely nothing else. I sat down, wrote this thing in bits and fits, letting the interactions of my characters guide the plot whatever which way they want. Until things actually happened, I had no idea where the actual sequence of events would go until.

Editing this after finishing it up, I would say the first half of the fic starts off pretty strong, but by the time they get to Twilight's library it peters off significantly with a low-key climax. That was mostly because I had Twilight fix everything up pretty quick, but then I got an Aesop in there, I guess?

The actual plot premise was one of those weird ideas that just sort of popped up into my head one day when browsing Derpibooru and noting there were a lot of Scootaloo-related tags that started with 'Scoota-', like Scootalove, Scootabuse, Scootagram, Scootacat, etc.