Commission piece done by my friend *mr-tiaa. The second in a series of drawings showcasing the Mane Six traveling with Zecora to her homeland in one of my stories.
While the Sable Antelopes rule Port-Au-Prince, there are several 'lesser' animal tribes that live under their protection. In this particular illustration, the hippopotamus (Africa's "river horse") is considered a cheerful and jolly creature. Full of good cheer, they take particular interest in those who show a keen love for fun and laughter.
In the scene above, Pinkie Pie is enjoying the hippo's amazing 'yawning' ability of their mouths. The hippos in my story love to laugh with their big mouths or talk a lot (though in a much deeper and reverberating voice due to their body's bulk and mass).
Needless to say, Rarity doesn't think it is very lady-like!
Pinkie Pie's eyes widened as she spied the massive creature rounding the corner of the shop, a huge smile appearing on her face as she took in a deep, abated breath.
"Pinkie Pie, just what are you--" Rarity began to ask but was cut off as the pink party pony dashed off in a puff of dust.
"Wow, hello there Mr. Hippopotamus! My name's Pinkie Pie! I've never met a hippopotamus before and this is so, so cool that I just had to say hi!" the pink pony exclaimed with unusual exuberance and glee.
The hippo stopped in his track, arching his eyes at the surprise encounter with the tourist from Equestria. His booming voice was deep and his words slow and purposeful as he spoke.
"Ho ho ho! What is that I spy, with my little eye? Why hello there, little po-nay!" the jolly creature let out a hearty laugh, "I can definitely see that you are one wound up ball of energy!"
"Ding, ding, ding! You are correct, good sir! You win the prize! And yes, I'm so full energy! My friends tell me it has to do with all the sugar I eat but... oh wow! Your mouth is so BIG! Like, massively big! I've never seen anyone open their mouths as wide as you do!" Pinkie said, bouncing excitedly on all four of her hooves as she expressed her admiration for the giant beast.
"Why, the better to laugh with, my little po-nay friend! And that isn't even the half of it!" the hippo smiled and squared planted its massive feet into the dirt road to strike a pose.
"Really?! You mean you really, really can open it up more than that? Ooo, that is just so amazing to think about, can you show me please? Pretty please? Pretty, pretty please with ice cream and strawberries and sugar on top? Pleaaseeee?!" she asked insistently and inquistively, to which the hippo gave a reverberating chortle and returned a big, toothy grin.
"But of course, I wouldn't be a true hippo if I couldn't do something as simple as that! Now watch this... open seasame!"
The hippo opened his massive jaw real wide, almost 180 degrees much to the surprise of his pony pony guest. He was quite proud to demonstrate his unique ability and Pinkie Pie took almost no time in taking advantage of the moment to jump up onto his lower jaw. She then stuck her head into the opening of his massive mouth - almost as if she were a lion tamer doing the same thing.
"Wow, oh wow!!! It's so huge in here! Hellllooo! Are there any hungry hippos in there?" Pinkie Pie shouted down the hippo's throat, waving her hoof to signal any residents that might reside in the hippo's massive gut.
The hippo's body began to shake as folds of skin and fat cascaded like a ripple across his body. His laughter caused his mouth to bob up and down as Pinkie Pie held on and screamed with glee at 'running the laugh'.
"We're always hungry, little po-nay. Got to keep and maintain my handsome figure, afterall! Hungry, hungry hippos; hungry, hungry hippos - yah!!"
They both giggled and laughed inanely while Rarity cautiously approached the two strange creatures.
"Pinkie, darling... Zecora and the others are getting further away from us. We should really rejoin them."
"Oh! You're right!" Pinkie Pie jumped down from the hippo's amazing maw and waved happily and excited to him, "Goodbye Mr. Hippopotamus! Thank you for showing me all that! I hope we can meet again real soon!"
"As do I, my little pink po-nay friend. Please, I hope you enjoy your stay here in Port-Au-Prince!" the hippo lifted his pudgy leg and gave the best wave that he could, given his girth and stocky form.
After Pinkie Pie had disappeared out of sight, Rarity bowed politely to gargantuan creature - such as the graceful lady that she was.
"I'm terribly sorry about my friend, I hope she didn't prove to be too much of a bother for you?"
"Nonsense, nonsense! To tell you the truth, I've always heard about you po-nay folks but never had the good fortune to interact with one! And if all you ponies are as good-natured and as jubulient and jolly as her, I dare say I might have to make it a point to visit this so-called Equestria of yours! You know what they ssay, birds of a feather and all, you get my drift?" the hippo then let out a deep, echoing laugh as he walked off.
But before he disappeared from sight, he turned his head and looked back at Rarity over his shoulder and shouted, "And do tell your friend that I had myself a grand ol' time. A grand ol' time indeed! You po-nays are such such wonderful folk!"