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Cheerilee: Today, we have two special guests with a very special announcement! Everypony, welcome the head of the Equestria Games, Ms. Harshwhinny!
Ms. Harshwhinny: Thank you. Now, I'm sure you all know about the Equestria Games, where ponies from all over the land compete for glory in various athletic pursuits. Well, now you littlest ones will have the chance to compete for a weighty responsibility of your very own.
Rainbow Dash: [distant] Oh, come on! Tell 'em the fun part!
Students: [Oohing and ahhing]
Rainbow Dash: That's right! All you gotta do is show Ms. Harshwhinny the coolest, most spectacular, most rocking routine and you're going to the Games! So who's going to be the lucky ponies?!
Diamond Tiara: It's gotta be me!
Aura: Maybe it's me!
Scootaloo: Maybe it's us!
Snips and Snails: Maybe it's us!
Snips: Hey! It could happen!
[theme song]
Rainbow Dash: So, the winning team gets to carry the Ponyville flag at the Equestria Games! Oh, you are gonna love this!
Ms. Harshwhinny: Ms. Dash, will you please curb your over-enthusiastic outbursts? Now then, let me be clear on the rules. You ponies will form teams. Each team will create their own flag carrying routine. Everypony will be judged on grace, style and originality. There's a most complicated scoring system, which I will elaborate upon now. Firstly—
Rainbow Dash: Aw, get to the nitty-gritty later. Tell 'em the important stuff! Like who's the coach! [blows whistle] That's right! Me! And you know why I'm qualified to coach you? Guess who carried the Cloudsdale flag in the Games when she was a little filly? Me! I'll never forget it—I burst into the stadium, spreading my wings, the flag flapping in the breeze. I did tricks with that flag the likes of which nopony saw before and nopony's seen since!
Ms. Harshwhinny: Professionalism, Ms. Dash. I must insist. If you want to keep your job as coach of these ponies, you must maintain a professional attitude and keep your emotions in check! Am I making myself absolutely, one hundred percent crystal clear?
Rainbow Dash: Yes, Ms. Harshwhinny. Y'know, "professionalism" is my middle name. Rainbow Professionalism Dash.
Ms. Harshwhinny: Hmph! Well, in three days time, Ms. Dash will accompany anypony competing to the Crystal Empire, where you will demonstrate your routines for me and the other judges, who will judge you very professionally.
Rainbow Dash: Ahem. Yes. Quite, quite correct. In the meantime, get ready to train, and train hard, because I know this opening ceremony is the single most important thing that will ever happen in your young lives! But, I know you're up for the challenge. And so am I! Wooho—! Ahem... meet me after school tomorrow at 1500 hours. Sharp. And show me your flag carrying skills. I am outta here. Professionally. See how professionally?
Ms. Harshwhinny: Ugh. Ponies, the most important thing is this: Your routine needs to show what your town means to you. So, do Ponyville proud. Work hard, be bold, wow me. That is all!
[school bell rings]
[foals talking]
Scootaloo: So what do you say we come up with the perfect routine and win this thing?
Apple Bloom: I'd say that's rootin'-tootin' terrific!
Sweetie Belle: But there's one problem! I bet everypony in class is planning to compete!
Scootaloo: Listen. Somepony in our class is gonna carry that flag, so it might as well be us! Crusaders, are you in or are you in? 'Cause I'm in!
Apple Bloom: Me too!
Sweetie Belle: Me three!
Scootaloo: Alright, the winning routine needs to show what's important about Ponyville, right?
Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle: Right!
Scootaloo: So... what's special about Ponyville? It's... it's... I got it! It's a place where different kinds of ponies live together as friends!
Apple Bloom: Earth ponies like me!
Sweetie Belle: Unicorns like me!
Scootaloo: And Pegasi like me! So somehow we got to figure out a way to show that in our act.
Sweetie Belle: We're gonna need a plan.
Apple Bloom: And a lot of hard work!
Scootaloo: And a whole bunch of practice! But take it from me; we may just be little ponies, but we have hearts as strong as horses!
[Apple Bloom, Scootaloo, and Sweetie Belle]
We're the toughest little ponies in town
Got the moves, got the mojo, no harder working ponies around
We are a trio, work as a team
We'll be the first ponies out on the flag-waving scene
We get going when the going gets tough
We know our very best is just never enough
We're kinda short, but so what? We don't get defeated
We could take a little break, but we don't need it
We've got hearts as strong as horses
We've got hearts as strong as horses
We've got hearts as strong as horses
We've got hea-a-a-arts, hearts strong as horses
When we put our minds together, we can achieve
We're the Cutie Mark Crusaders, and you should believe
We've got determination to represent the nation
For the win
We've got hearts as strong as horses
We've got hearts as strong as horses
We've got hearts as strong as horses
And we're playing to win as we gallop to glory
We can conquer any challenge we're in
We've got hea-a-a-arts, hearts strong as horses
Hearts strong as horses
Crusaders: Whoa!
Crusaders: Oof!
Diamond Tiara: If that's the best you've got, we're going to win for sure.
Silver Spoon: We already have the most divine routine planned.
Diamond Tiara: It's absolutely sure to crush everyone else – and I mean crush.
Scootaloo: But we're winners! And we have [starts singing] hearts
Silver Spoon: Sure. But you know what you don't have?
Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon: Your cutie marks! Blank flanks, blank flanks, blank flanks!
Apple Bloom: What does that have to do with flag carryin'?
Silver Spoon: Having cutie mark-less ponies represent Ponyville would be unthinkable.
Diamond Tiara: And we, of course, already have our cutie marks. So we know who's gonna be in the winner's circle.
Scootaloo: Listen, you two! Cutie marks or no cutie marks, you'll see! The Crusaders are gonna carry that flag at the Games.
Silver Spoon: May the best ponies win!
Scootaloo: Game on!
Rainbow Dash: Show me what you got, Cutie Mark Crusaders, and make it good!
Scootaloo: Don't worry, we will!
Sweetie Belle: Now, this is just a little something we threw together. It's not perfect yet, not even close.
Diamond Tiara: Let's watch the Cutie Mark "Goof-saders" do their saddle routine.
Silver Spoon: They're gonna be a hot mess!
Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon: [giggling]
Scootaloo: Since the dawn of recorded time, in one town of amazing amazingness, three types of ponies coexist!
Apple Bloom: We are Earth ponies!
Sweetie Belle: We are unicorns!
Scootaloo: We are Pegasi! And the town where friendship reigns is our home. Now, welcome to the stadium, the flag of the place we love best...
Crusaders: Ponyville forever! Yay!
Scootaloo: It's kind of a work in progress. So? What did you think?
Rainbow Dash: That was ama— [thinking] Wait. Hold on now. Gotta stay calm, cool and collected. [aloud] To give a calm, clear analysis— wait. You whipped that act together just yesterday?! That is— [thinking] Professionalism, Dash, keep those emotions in check! [aloud] Overall, it was... kinda, sorta... [quickly] overall, it was okay. Keep working hard. Who knows? You might have a shot. Gotta go!
Apple Bloom: Do y'all think she liked it?
Sweetie Belle: I'm not really sure.
Scootaloo: You heard her! If we keep working hard, we might have a shot! So let's keep working! Trot to it, ponies!
Diamond Tiara: Did you see that?! I can't believe I'm saying this. They could win!
Silver Spoon: But how do we stop them? We already called them blank flanks!
Diamond Tiara: Then we need to find a new way to get under their skin. Or maybe... get under their wings.
Diamond Tiara: Girls, we just wanted to say your act is quite impressive!
Sweetie Belle: Wait... what?
Apple Bloom: Um... thanks?
Silver Spoon: Oh, but of course. As a matter of fact, we think you're very brave.
Scootaloo: Brave? Why?
Diamond Tiara: Isn't it obvious? It is to us. In fact, it's obvious to everypony. You're showing all three types of Ponyville ponies, yet you have a Pegasus pony...
Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon: ...who can't even fly!
Apple Bloom: What in tarnation does that have to do with anything?
Silver Spoon: I'd say not even being able to fly has everything to do with everything. Doesn't it?
Diamond Tiara: I mean, a Pegasus pony at your age? You should've been flying long ago.
Scootaloo: So what if my wings can't get me off the ground?
Diamond Tiara: Your career as a flag carrier isn't getting off the ground either.
Silver Spoon: Ms. Harshwhinny will never pick a Pegasus pony who can't fly to represent Ponyville in front of all of Equestria.
Sweetie Belle: Ms. Harshwhinny never said anything about that!
Silver Spoon: I would've thought that was obvious.
Diamond Tiara: Well, have fun practicing anyway, even if your routine will never—how shall I say—take off!
Sweetie Belle: Don't listen to them, Scootaloo. Scootaloo? You okay?
Scootaloo: This routine isn't working how it is. We've gotta rethink my part in the whole thing.
Sweetie Belle: What?
Apple Bloom: Why?
Scootaloo: If we wanna win, I'm gonna have to fly!
Sweetie Belle: Is that even possible?
Apple Bloom: And by tomorrow?
Scootaloo: Maybe I can win if I work twice as hard. See? Oof! Maybe... three times as hard.
Apple Bloom: Golly, I don't know, Scootaloo, I don't think that's the problem.
Scootaloo: Well, I know this for sure – flying is the only way we're gonna win, so it's back to practice!
Sweetie Belle: Is this a good idea?
Scootaloo: Whoaaaaa!
Scootaloo: I'll just work four times as hard!
Apple Bloom: Probably not.
Scootaloo: [sighs] Guys, guys, guys! Try it again!
Apple Bloom: [yawns] But we've been rehearsin' all the livelong day! We're gettin' tired!
Scootaloo: Fine! We'll skip to my big impressive flying entrance. So you've done the do-si-do to the left, then to the right, and then there's the hoop. Then I come in—
Scootaloo: Not quite what I had in mind. We'll just... try that part again. [straining noises]
Apple Bloom: [hushed] I liked the routine the way it was!
Sweetie Belle: [hushed] Me too! But all she cares about now is flying!
Scootaloo: Don't worry, I'll be flying high tomorrow on our final run-through for Rainbow Dash. I'm gonna get this, you'll see. [straining noises]
Rainbow Dash: Okay, Cutie Mark Crusaders, this is your final run before you show it at the stadium tomorrow. I know you're gonna absolutely, positively— have a lot of fun, heheh. Okay, go! [blows whistle]
Scootaloo: [panting] Ponyville! Home of the, um...
Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle: [hushed] Friendship!
Scootaloo: Ah, friendship, right! Uh, there are four— no, three kinds of ponies.
Apple Bloom: [yawns]
Sweetie Belle: [hushed] Left, left!
Apple Bloom: [hushed] I'm sorry! I'm just tired! And then I dip, and then we turn, and— Sorry!
Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle: [straining noises]
Scootaloo: Ta-da! Oof! [panting] So? What'cha think?
Rainbow Dash: That's... y'know... good and all, heheh... I just thought... maybe possibly you might wanna go back to, say, the first version of the act, which was, I dunno, what's the word, better? Just do the routine as it was! Don't mess with success, right? Seriously. Now I need to... go coach these other ponies! And don't forget, we've got to catch the early train for the Crystal Empire. See you in the morning!
Scootaloo: What are we gonna do?! We're competing tomorrow, and I still can't fly! Unless...
Sweetie Belle: I'm just too tired! I can't keep going!
Apple Bloom: Me too! I'm tired, I'm hungry, and now I hate this routine! It feels like it's all about you now!
Sweetie Belle: She's right. It's like you don't even need us anymore!
Scootaloo: Of course I need you! Without you two, who's gonna hold up the hoop?
Apple Bloom: Rrgh! You don't listen to yourself! Forget it. I'm goin' home to get some sleep.
Scootaloo: So? Are you gonna leave me too?
Sweetie Belle: We've gotta catch the early train to the Crystal Empire. I'd better get some rest. See you in the morning, Scootaloo.
Scootaloo: Come on, Scootaloo! Do it for Ponyville! Just got to try twenty times as hard! [straining noises] Thirty times as hard...! Oof! Just... a little... harder!
Scootaloo: [straining noises] [sighs] I can't fly. I just... can't.
Train conductor: Crystal Empire! All aboard!
Sweetie Belle: Scootaloo? Where is she?
Apple Bloom: She'd better get here soon! This here train is about to leave!
Scootaloo: Here I am...
Apple Bloom: We were scared you were gonna miss the train!
Scootaloo: I... I'm not going.
Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle: What?!
Scootaloo: I'm the weak link. If I go, and fall, flop, or do anything but fly, I'm gonna blow it for you two.
Sweetie Belle: I can't believe you're quitting on us!
Scootaloo: But you're better off without me!
Sweetie Belle: But that's not true, Scootaloo!
Apple Bloom: You know what, Sweetie Belle? Forget it. If she's gonna quit, we don't want her, and we don't need her!
Scootaloo: Fine!
Apple Bloom: Fine!
Sweetie Belle: Fine...
Train conductor: All aboard!
[train puffing]
[train whistle blowing]
Rainbow Dash: How's my favorite routine going today? Oh, I just can't keep it in! I want you to win so bad! [to the BGM] Bom, bom, bom, bom... and then Scootaloo does that [half-whistles] through the hoop!
Apple Bloom: Well, there ain't gonna be a Scootaloo.
Sweetie Belle: She's staying home.
Rainbow Dash: She's what?!
Apple Bloom: She got it in her head that the only way to represent Ponyville was by flyin' in our routine! When she couldn't do it, she told us that she was quittin'.
Rainbow Dash: And then you tried to stop her from doing that, right?
Sweetie Belle: Well, actually, we kinda told her...
Apple Bloom: ...uh, that we didn't want a quitter.
Rainbow Dash: Hang on. Are you nuts?! You're a team, and a team never leaves a friend behind!
[brakes squealing]
Rainbow Dash: Come on!
Diamond Tiara: Sorry you can't make it! We'll take a picture for you from the winner's circle!
Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon: [laughing, under]
Sweetie Belle: I do not like them one bit.
Rainbow Dash: Put on some speed, girls!
[ripping noises]
Rainbow Dash: Throwing away your scooter?!
Scootaloo: Rainbow Dash?
Rainbow Dash: Yup, but not just me.
Scootaloo: I don't wanna see them. And what are they doing here, anyway? They're supposed to be on the train.
Apple Bloom: We're not goin'.
Sweetie Belle: Not without you, Scootaloo.
Rainbow Dash: What's gotten into you, Scootaloo?
Scootaloo: I didn't want to ruin their chance to win just because I couldn't fly.
Rainbow Dash: And who said you had to?
Scootaloo: But flying's what Pegasus ponies are supposed to do! You flew when you carried the flag in the games!
Rainbow Dash: But that was me! You're you! And it just doesn't matter if you can fly or not. Your routine was amazing 'cause it represented exactly what makes Ponyville special. You do still know what that is, right?
Sweetie Belle: Friendship.
Apple Bloom: Three kinds of ponies livin' together as friends. Just like us. Earth ponies...
Sweetie Belle: ...unicorns...
Scootaloo: ...and Pegasi. But Rainbow Dash... what if... what if my wings never grow? What if I never fly?
Rainbow Dash: Listen, Scootaloo. Maybe you'll fly someday, or maybe you won't. You're all kinds of awesome anyway. Who's the toughest little pony in town?
[Sweetie Belle]
Got the moves, got the mojo...
[Apple Bloom]
No harder working pony around.
We are a trio, work as a team
[Apple Bloom, Scootaloo, and Sweetie Belle]
We'll be the first ponies out on the flag-waving scene
Scootaloo: So let's get to the Crystal Empire and let's do the routine as it was! And let's win this thing!
[Apple Bloom, Scootaloo, and Sweetie Belle]
We've got hearts as strong as horses
We've got hearts as strong as horses
We've got hearts as strong as horses
And we're playing to win as we gallop to glory
We can conquer any challenge we're in
We've got hea-a-a-arts, hearts strong as horses
Hearts strong as horses
[crowd cheering]
Crusaders: Ponyville forever! Yay!
[microphone feedback]
Ms. Harshwhinny: [through microphone] In the Equestria Games, the Ponyville flag will be carried by... 'Cutie Mark Crusaders'!
[crowd cheering]
Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon: [groaning]
Rainbow Dash: Ahem. Look. What you three did was... acceptable.
Ms. Harshwhinny: Acceptable? Acceptable?! Why, it was totally stupendously the single most amazing thing I've ever seen! [laughs]
Rainbow Dash: Contain your excitement, Ms. Harshwhinny. Remember – professionalism.
Ms. Harshwhinny: Ahem. Y-Yes, well, I- [laughs nervously]
Rainbow Dash and Crusaders: [laughing]
Scootaloo: You know what this means, right?
Apple Bloom: What?
Scootaloo: We are totally gonna get cutie marks in flag-carrying!
Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle: Yeah!
Crusaders: [laughing]