When Scales woke up, he felt considerably better. He felt satiated, unlike the hunger he had felt the night before. His feet were hanging onto something and he looked up and realized he was hanging upside down from a post, and a small clip was on his wing. The clip was attached to a machine below that had a pulse rate on the screen, and he was attached to an IV. Other animals were running around the house cheerfully, and the same rabbit who was there last night was watching him. Soon he heard a gentle voice and he knew the reason why he felt so much better. The pegasus pony who he had seen prior came into the room.
"Good morning, little one; it's wonderful to see you awake. You're doing so much better than you were last night. Some of the owls who live around my home came and let me know there was an animal that was in need of help so late at night. You perked right up as soon as I gave you some care. I guess love is a great medicine. Anyways, I think you got dehydrated, so I put an IV in you filled with liquid to rehydrate you." She glanced at the machine he was attached to. "I put a pulse oximeter on you and you've just gotten so much better overnight. Just let me check your heartbeat and I'll serve you breakfast and you'll be able to go. Make sure to drink plenty of water before you take off, and try to take it easy today."
Fluttershy slipped on a stethoscope and placed it on his chest and listened for a few minutes. "Okay, breathe in...breathe out...good..." She moved it around a few times and finally put away the stethoscope and smiled at him. "You're healthy. Here, I got you some nice fruit and water; eat up and then you can go. Come back if you have any other problems, okay?" She removed the oximeter and the IV and then left again for a moment and returned with water and a plum. Scales was shocked; never before had he been fed so much love in one sitting.
"This must be part of Equestria, the land the queen talked about..." Though he was quite full, he still ate the plum to be a polite guest and drank some of the water and took his leave. Fluttershy looked up from another animal she was attending to and waved at him. He squeaked gratefully and left. When he left via the window, he stopped in awe of what he saw. Equestria was beautiful. All sorts of animals ran or flew or crawled about merrily, and the sun peeked over thin cirrus clouds in the sky and smiled at him. Below the pathway to the house was a creek, where amphibians, turtles, and fish lounged. He could see ponies a little ways away trotting past the home he had just removed himself from, enjoying the beautiful day.
It was the polar opposite of the gloomy and dank caverns he had grown up in. He knew that this was the best place to be and looked again towards passerby ponies. "If I'm going to live here, I need to turn myself into one of them." He flew behind some trees and landed. Scales began to doodle multiple outlines of ponies into the soil.
He played with different designs for awhile until he finally obtained an outline he liked. It was a unicorn stallion with a short mane and tail, somewhat spiky at the edges, and large eyes. He looked to the currently empty flank of the outline and thought for a second. What would be his mark? It only took a moment of thought before he doodled down a pie with a lattice top crust. Now for colors; this baffled him for a second, as he wasn't sure at all what colors he wanted. The young changeling glanced around, hoping for an answer from the world. A look that was sent up at the sky caught his attention. His eyes met the canopy of the trees with their rich brown color of their trucks and their glorious, gentle green leaves. There was a blue that penetrated through the openings between the leaves from the sky. He glanced down at the drawing and he wrote some words into the mane and coat. He wrote in the mane BROWN and in the coat GREEN and in the eyes BLUE.
Scales concentrated and got the image in his head. Within a few seconds he transformed. He looked himself over and smiled, and his hoof ran over the drawings he made and covered them up with dirt. The new unicorn stood up and walked out from behind the trees.
Another thought caught his attention. "You need a job if you're going to stay here." In spite of this, he had no idea where to go. He was still in an unknown place and didn't even know where a bakery was that he could possibly apply at. Fluttershy's house was a little ways away from him, and he began to head back to ask for directions. He reached the house and gently knocked and the owner of the home came to the door. When she realized it was a pony she was unfamiliar with, she looked towards the ground and her ears fell back. He tried to smile.
"Um, hi...I'm new to the, uh, area. Can you...can you give me directions to the nearest bakery, please?"
Fluttershy gave a tiny whimper and uttered an equally tiny "Okay." Scales racked his mind for a way to make the uneasy pony feel more comfortable, and his eyes locked onto a badger she was treating.
"Are you taking care of that badger?" he asked. Fluttershy looked back towards it and nodded meekly. "I really like animals. I hope he's alright."
Fluttershy perked up a little at that sentence and her smile returned slightly. "Oh, thanks...yes, little Honey over there managed to strain his leg. He'll be alright. It's nice to hear somepony else likes animals...um...you wanted to know where the nearest bakery was, right?"
"Right. I, uh, just moved here. I'm hoping to find a bakery that might be willing to hire me."
"Oh...now, the nearest bakery is down the road and to the right and then to keep going forward, but that one isn't hiring."
Scales sighed dejectedly. "Thanks anyways." he muttered. Fluttershy was silent for a second and then as he turned away, she spoke again.
"Wait...if you're willing to walk further, in the middle of town there's a really good bakery that's seeking out a new baker. I know the couple who owns it...they had foals a few months ago and they...they, um...need another baker to help them. Tell them, er, Fluttershy said hi. That might help you out." she said kindly. Scales's eyes lit up with new hope.
"Wow, thank you so much. That helps me tremendously."
"You're welcome. So, um...what's your...uh, name?"
Scales paused for a second, raking his mind again for an answer. The first thing that came to mind was an ingredient for his favorite pie. "My name is Rhubarb." he replied hastily. He nearly slapped himself. "That's a stupid name. She's gonna think-"
"Oh, that's a nice name," she said, "well...I've got to get back to my animals. Welcome to Ponyville."
"Ponyville..." Rhubarb absorbed the name of the town he was going to reside in. "Thanks again!"
He turned around and she closed the door. He made his way down the road and had to walk for about two or three miles to reach the bakery Fluttershy had told him about. He saw many things that were strange to him and kept him curious. One of the more interesting things he saw when walking was pegasi attending to the weather. He watched them fly and move and disperse clouds, and as he was looking, a pegasus caught his eye.
The pony had been standing on the side of one of the clouds and looked back at him. Her body was a lime green, her hair was pink, and she had three suns as a cutie mark. The two stared at each other for awhile, though neither could place why they were interested in looking at each other. Neither could say a word, and finally another pegasus intervened. "Merry May! I need you over here to disperse some clouds! What are you staring at, anyways?"
A blue pony with a rainbow-colored mane walked by Merry May's side. She looked down at Scales and smirked. "Oh, May, you can stare at stallions later."
"I...I wasn't staring!" she said, blushing.
"Neither was I." Rhubarb added awkwardly. The rainbow pony rolled her eyes.
"Yeah, yeah. So who are you, anyways?" She examined the unicorn below. "I've never seen you around here."
"I'm Rhubarb. Nice to meet you two. I'm new here, and I'm going to go apply for a job at this bakery a pegasus named Fluttershy directed me to." he said. Rainbow Dash smiled at him.
"Well, welcome to Ponyville, Rhubarb. My name is Rainbow Dash, and this is Merry May. So you're a baker, eh? Better be cut out for Sugarcube Corner. They're the best bakery in town, so good luck. So, we'll see you later, and we mean we'll see you later." she said. Rhubarb gave her a strange look.
"What do you mean by that?" he asked. Rainbow just laughed.
"You'll see. See ya around, Rhubarb." She flew off, and Merry May looked at him a little longer before smiling at him. He couldn't help but smile back, and she turned around to get back to work. He let out a contented sigh and continued walking. When he arrived at Sugarcube Corner, he was struck with awe. The building looked like a giant gingerbread house. Yet again was he amazed by this new world. On the window there was a sign that declared "HELP WANTED." Taking a breath, he walked inside.