Pinkie Pie's Incredible Interplanetary Super Prank
Twilight Sparkle's head shot up, eyes wide. A stray thought had interrupted her reading and struck terror deep into her heart.
Pinkie Pie had been quiet for hours! In a library!
The unicorn rushed from her room and down the stairs to the main floor, then let out a relieved whoosh of air at the sight of the pink pony. Pinkie was right where she left her, reading by candlelight from one of the many open books splayed across the library's largest table.
Twilight watched as Pinkie leaned over a book, eyes flicking side to side. Then the earth pony shifted one big step to the side, flipped the page of the next book, and leaned in close to the words. She only seemed to take around five seconds per book before moving on to the next.
"How do you manage to learn anything like that?" Twilight asked.
"By reading the words, silly," Pinkie replied without lifting her head, stepping to the next book in line. The exchange of words didn't seem to slow her down at all.
"That's not what I..." Twilight shook her head, then stepped closer to look at the different titles. The History of Equestria, Collected Tales of Robin Hoof and His Maney Men, Hay's Anatomy, Astrophysical Phenomena, Vacation in Stalliongrad on 3 Bits a Day, and the latest issue of the Powderpuff Fillies comic book series.
"Pinkie, what could you possibly be researching? What's the connection between all of these books?"
Pinkie Pie lifted her head with a sharp jolt. She walked to the center of the room and pulled a wooden pipe out from somewhere. "Pranks, my good Sparkle." She popped the pipe into her snout, then began pacing back and forth with a soft clop-clop of her hooves. Bubbles swirled above her head, gliding up to pop in mid-air.
"Pranks," Twilight repeated, then checked several more of the books. "But... none of these are joke books."
Pinkie waved her pipe around, sending a few more of the shiny, ephemeral globes streaming into the air. "Oh, I've read all of those."
"You read all the joke books in the library?"
"Nuh uh." Pinkie continued pacing, blowing more bubbles. "In Equestria."
Twilight just stared.
"But, they're no help. I need more than a prank for the big day tomorrow. I can't just pull one pony's leg. Not even if I pull all of their legs. No, I need something that will work on everypony. Everypony! What I need is a... a..."
Pinkie stopped pacing and slowly blew a massive bubble. It dislodged from the pipe and floated upward at a snail's pace, wobbling. "A super prank." The bubble exploded with an audible pop.
Twilight didn't reply, hoping Pinkie would finish connecting the dots, or at least explain what the "big day" tomorrow would be. It was a futile hope, of course. "So, uh, now you're reading about Robin Hoof and astrophysics becaaauuuse..."
Pinkie went back to pacing. "Grannie Pie said that sometimes inspiration comes from the strangest places."
Twilight glanced back at one of the open books. "Yeah, I bet a prank inspired by The Socioeconomic Ramifications of Sporks is sure to be a real humdinger," she snarked, then sighed as she stretched out a leg. "Look, Pinkie, it's pretty late. I need to get some rest. Are you going to be okay alone?"
But Pinkie was staring at her, tail out straight, snout open and pipe dangling from her lower lip. "Inspiration!" she yelled, then zipped across the room to lift Hay's Anatomy and flip through the pages rapidly. She stopped and scanned one particular page for a few seconds, then shot out the door. The book spun twice in mid-air before it landed neatly on the table.
"Wait, what's tomorrow?" Twilight suddenly remembered to ask, but the earth pony was already gone.
"April Foals, duh!" Rainbow Dash shook her head, dropping to the ground near Twilight. "Don't they have April Foals Day in Canterlot?"
The purple unicorn chewed on a warm chunk of croissant, standing at a table outside of Sugarcube Corner. She thought back to her days in Canterlot, spent almost entirely alone or with just Spike assisting her research.
"Yes," she replied after swallowing her mouthful of breakfast, "but I never celebrated it. Spike dropped a bucket of water on me one year, and..." Her voice trailed off.
"You didn't handle it so well?" Dash asked.
Twilight chuckled weakly and took another quick bite of croissant rather than reply.
"Don't worry," the pegasus said with a winning smile, "you aren't on my prank radar today."
"Phew, that's a load off my mind."
"Unless I just lied to leave you wide open for a prank." The smile on Dash's face didn't change one bit.
"Uh..." The last piece of croissant hovered a few inches off of Twilight's plate, ready to be delivered to her mouth, but she was suddenly thinking hard. "So if you're lying, then I should be careful. But if you're not lying, then I can relax. But if I relax then that might make you want to prank me because I'll be extra surprised. But... but..."
Twilight shook her head and smiled back, in what she hoped was a disarming kind of way. "Wait, is this the prank? To make me worry all day about if I'm going to get pranked?"
Dash's poker-face smile didn't move. "Maybe."
The unicorn pony was still trying to deduce a way out of the dilemma when she heard a shout and laughter from across the street. Both Dash and Twilight turned to look, watching Pinkie bounce away from a group of ponies, one of whom was laughing while shaking a hoof at the pink pony's back.
Pinkie stopped at another group of ponies who were chatting at the side of the road, interrupting their conversation. Twilight could see that a few of them were peeved at first, but then Pinkie Pie stretched out one of her legs and said something and a few of the other ponies shook their heads, speaking back. Pinkie spoke again, then the others... then Pinkie again with something louder and high-pitched, and she went bouncing off at high speed, shooed away by laughter and even more shaking heads.
"What's she up to?" Rainbow Dash asked.
"I haven't the foggiest... But here she comes."
Pinkie Pie bounced up to the duo and grinned. "Gooood morning, friendly friends!"
"Hello, Pinkie Pie," Twilight replied, slow and wary.
"How did you two sleep?"
"Good?" Rainbow Dash replied, glancing over at Twilight, who just shrugged.
"That's great! I was up aaaall night researching at Twilight's," Pinkie said to Rainbow.
"Uh huh. About stuff. And things! I especially enjoyed the things. And Twilight, do you know what I found out?"
Pinkie Pie slowly stretched her front hooves over her head, closing her eyes as she opened her mouth in a huge, gaping yawn that she ended with a smack of her lips and rubbing the back of a hoof at her eyes.
"That yawns are contagious."
Sure enough, Twilight and Dash found themselves in the middle of a sympathetic yawn, triggered by Pinkie's, and even though they knew it they couldn't stop themselves.
"All you have to do is see somepony yawn..." Pinkie continued.
Twilight's yawn deepened, and Dash started another one, shaking her head.
"... or hear one..."
Twilight felt little tears come to her eyes as she yawned again. Dash butted in with, "Pinkie Pie, you--"
"... or even just talk about yawning or sing about yawning or perform an entire musical number about yawning and you just can't stop yawning!" And then to prove her own point, Pinkie yawned again, shaking it out with a giggle at the end as she saw Rainbow and Twilight were caught mid-yawn again.
"Made you yawn! April Foals!" Pinkie announced with a huge grin.
"Ugh, I think I need a nap," Dash muttered, taking off with slow, lethargic flaps of her wings.
Twilight shook her head to clear the cobwebs that had formed and rubbed tears from her eyes with the back of a hoof. "You got me, Pinkie," Twilight admitted, then chuckled. "And Rainbow, too. But, what makes this a super prank?"
"Wellll, two things. Lookity!" Pinkie pointed across the street. One of the ponies Pinkie had previously pranked walked up to a group and spoke to them, then gave a huge, exaggerated yawn that set off everypony there in a chain reaction of yawns. Even Twilight stifled a tiny one as she watched. "It's spreading like yawnfire!"
"Okay, and what's the second?"
"Remember when I said that it has to work on everypony?"
Pinkie leaned in close and whispered, eyes glinting deviously. "Even just reading about yawning can make you yawn."