How We Met
A My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic fanfic
By The Rated Ponystar
Chapter 8: How We Fled
Edited by: Fernin and Souldin
Disclaimer: I do not own MLP. If I could, then all traces of My Little Pony Tales would be completely wiped from the face of existence. Seriously, it’s worse than 3 and 3.5. At least that one you can make fun of...
As the hands of the clock ticked, Rarity could feel herself nearly dying from boredom. Flipping through magazines and criticizing the latest fashions could only entertain her for so long. Glancing at the clock, she let out an annoyed huff. What was taking Fluttershy so long? Normally, Fluttershy was always first to arrive for their weekly spa date, yet for the last two hours Rarity had sat in the same seat reading the same magazines over and over again. Either Fluttershy had forgotten to send a message, or the shy mare was going through some sort of ordeal.
“Aloe, I’m afraid we're going to have to cancel today’s appointment. I’ll be sure to visit later in the week. If you’ll excuse me, I have to see what’s wrong with Fluttershy.” said Rarity, bidding farewell to the spa pony.
Trotting through the streets of Ponyville, Rarity tried to think of some reasoning behind Fluttershy’s lateness. Perhaps one of her animals suddenly got sick? Maybe she had just simply forgot? There was also the possibility that Fluttershy was in some sort of danger, but what were the odds? Then again, she had told Rarity last week how a hydra chased Pinkie, Twilight, Applejack, and her at Froggy Bottom Bog.
Speaking of Applejack, Rarity spotted the farmer up ahead pulling a cart full of apples. She quickly increased her pace and called out, “Applejack! Can you wait up a bit?”
Applejack turned around and smiled. “Howdy, Rarity. Need somethin’?”
“Yes, dear. I was wondering if you’ve seen Fluttershy? She was supposed to join me at the spa, but she never came. Have you seen her by any chance?” asked Rarity.
With a shake of her head, Applejack answered, “Sorry, Rarity. Haven’t seen her all day. Ah was headin’ over to her place to deliver these apples for her animals. Why don’cha tag along and we can see her together?”
“Sounds like a plan. Lead on, please.” The two ponies made their way towards the home of their nature loving friend, all the while hoping that everything was alright.
When Rarity and Applejack arrived at Fluttershy’s cottage, they were surprised to find it as silent as a grave. Normally the secluded area would be filled with the sounds of animals scurrying their little feet or birds chirping their sweet songs. However, neither of them heard anything, not even the squeak of a mouse.
Applejack parked the cart and started knocking. “Fluttershy? It’s AJ and Rarity! Ya’ll alright in there?!”
There was no response. Applejack went to knock again, but the door slowly opened revealing a surprised Angel.
“Angel? Where’s Fluttershy?” asked Rarity. The little bunny gave a sad sigh before motioning the girls to follow him inside. When they entered the house, the two mares gasped.
“My goodness! It’s like a hurricane ran through this room. Ugh, the mess!” whined Rarity. The utter destruction of the room was almost unbearable to look at. Staring at the torn curtains, smashed vases, and the scattered animal food made her cringe. She quickly looked away before the urge to tidy up overcame her.
“Ah’m more worried about what caused this mess then what it looks like.” Applejack glared at the embarrassed unicorn.
The earth pony turned her attention to Angel. “Did some big critter come in here and rough up the place? Is Fluttershy alright?”
Angel shook his head. He flapped his arms like wings, whimpering like a certain shy pegasus. The two mares realized what he was trying to do and urged him to continue. Angel continued his charade by kicking in the air and pretending to throw things, his face contorted in rage. Then he paused and buried his muzzle in his paws, throwing out fake sobs, even managing to fake tears coming out of his eyes. The message clicked for both ponies and they looked at each other in shock.
“You mean to time tell me Fluttershy did all this?” Applejack asked. When Angel nodded, the earthy pony let out a low whistle. “Whoooweee, never thought the girl had it in her.”
“Honestly, Applejack. This isn’t the time to be impressed,” scolded Rarity. “Whatever happened to Fluttershy had to be devastating and that’s something to be more concerned about. ‘Never thought the girl had it in her,’ honestly. Hmph.”
Although it was nice to get back at the earth pony for her earlier comment, Rarity quickly turned her focus back to the matter at hand. “Angel, can you please tell us where Fluttershy is? We want to help.”
The rabbit nodded and held his paw out like a wait signal before bouncing his way up the staircase, leaving the two alone. As they waited, some of Fluttershy’s animals began to appear; nervous squirrels and terrified mice peeked out of their homes, casting worried glances at the direction of the stairs to their caretaker's bedroom. Applejack nudged Rarity, nodding her head towards the worried animals. Rarity saw them and only bit her lip; never had she seen the little creatures so worried. The two friends exchanged glances, silently promising each other not to leave until they got to the bottom of all this.
Soon, they heard a set of hooves coming down the stairs. With Angel riding on her back, Fluttershy arrived at the bottom. When she arrived, their eyes widen and their mouths dropped. Apparently, the house wasn’t the only thing that looked like a disaster. Fluttersy struggled to keep her bloodshot eyes open and muttered. “Hello girls...”
In an instant, Rarity and Applejack were at their friend’s side. Rarity looked horrified as she eyed Fluttershy's disarrayed state. “Fluttershy! What happened to you?!”
Fluttershy hid behind her frizzled mane, hoping her friends wouldn’t see the tear marks that were arched around her cheeks. “Nothing happened...”
Applejack stomped her hoof aggressively, earning another scolding look from Rarity. “Nothing happened, mah hat! Ya look like ya just been through Tartarus, girl! Somethin’ is wrong and we need to know now!”
“I... I....” Fluttershy stuttered under Applejack harsh, but concerned stare.
Fluttershy didn’t get a chance to answer as Rarity placed a comforting foreleg around nervous mare’s neck and nuzzled her gently, calming her nerves as her worried face turned more serene. “Its okay, darling. You don’t have to tell us now. Why don’t we sit on the couch and get our bearings straight while Applejack makes some tea?”
“What? But ah don’t know how...” Applejack’s complaint was silenced with a glare from the unicorn. “Uh, sure. Ah’ll... ah’ll do that.”
While Applejack made her way to the kitchen, Rarity guided Fluttershy to a couch. Lying down on one of her soft pillows, Fluttershy started to close her eyes . Rarity rubbed a hoof through her pink mane delicately while humming a soothing melody.
“Yeow! Dagnabbit!” shouted Applejack, snapping Fluttershy out of her drowsy state. A montage of curses seared through the air before the earth pony caught herself. “Ah’m fine! None of ya’ll worry. Just cut myself on some shattered glass. Where does Fluttershy keep her first aid kit?”
“Um... it’s under the kitchen sink,” said Fluttershy. A few minutes later, Applejack trotted awkwardly back into the living room while balancing three cups on her back. The filled cups nearly tipped over despite the her careful movement thanks to her bandaged hoof.
Raising an eyebrow, Rarity was about to comment, but Applejack interrupted her. “Ah told ya ah can’t make tea. Ah’m sure water is just as good.”
“Um, it’s okay Rarity. Water is fine,” whispered Fluttershy. Rarity gave in reluctantly, levitating the cups to everypony before taking her own.
Fluttershy nervously took a sip to calm herself. The others sat silently, carefully watching her before the two looked at each other and nodded. Rarity took a deep breath. “Fluttershy, I know it might be difficult for you to talk about, but both of us want to help you. Please, tell us what happened that caused you to become in such a state?”
Hiding behind her mane again, the pegasus kept her silence as her friends waited. Time passed in until Fluttershy whispered, “.... it’s all my fault.”
Rarity and Applejack glanced at each other. Applejack scooted closer to hear better and cleared her throat. “Beg yer pardon?”
Fluttershy struggled to force out words. “... It’s all my fault... I... Rainbow Dash... she...”
“Rainbow Dash?” Rarity eyes rolled. “Oh, what has that pegasus done this time?”
“It’s not her fault!” shouted Fluttershy, nearly making Rarity jump out of her seat. “It’s all my fault! I hurt her! I’m horrible! I’m a monster! I’m... I’m... I’m not worthy of being anypony’s friend!”
Without warning the she leaped into Rarity’s hooves and wept on her shoulders. Rarity simply stared at her friend uncomprehendingly before rubbing Fluttershy’s back comfortingly while shooting a worried glance to the equally puzzled Applejack. Fluttershy hysterics continued as Rarity whispered, “Its okay, Fluttershy. Whatever you did I’m sure you can apologize for.”
“N-n-no, I-I-I can’t! Rai-inbow... h-hates me... and... I deserve it!” Fluttershy pushed herself off Rarity and stared at the floor in shame. “I don’t deserve any of you as friends. I’m a horrible pony. I can’t even be considered the Element of Kindness anymore.”
“Beg yer pardon, sugarcube. But what could ya have done?” asked Applejack.
Rarity noticed a few tears dripping down Fluttersy's cheek and gently wiped them away with a hoof. “It’s alright, Fluttershy. Whatever you’ve done, we won’t hate you for it.”
Fluttershy turned to her friends before dragging her hooves to the dining table and came back with a letter in her mouth. She dropped it on the couch as her friends look at the letter curiously. Rarity levitated it to eye level and started reading it in silence. Applejack leaned in over her shoulder, her lips mouthing as she read along. By the time they finished reading the letter, Rarity’s eyes widened as Applejack gave a loud cry of excitement. “Yeeehaw! Well how bout them apples? Our Rainbow managed to impress them Wonderbolts faster than Big Macintosh’s best apple bucking record!”
“Indeed. After Rainbow’s heroic rescue I think she deserves such a chance to join her favorite team!” Rarity beamed and folded the letter nearly. A thought struck as she looked at Fluttershy inquiringly. “I fail to see how this relates to anything, Fluttershy. How is this involved in you ‘hurting’ Rainbow Dash?”
Fluttershy lowered her head further. “... I got that letter by mistake... two days ago...”
All the excitement the two mares had vanished. For a while, none of them said anything with only the distant sounds of squeaking mice echoing in the room. Fluttershy started shaking like an earthquake had arrived as she forced the words out of her mouth. “... I... hid it from her... and... when she found out... it was too late...”
Wiping the tears from her eyes, Fluttershy reluctantly related what happened next—the shock on Rainbow’s face. The anger. The end of the two flyers’ friendship. Applejack’s mouth widened more over time while Rarity bit her lip from crying out in disbelief. It was unimaginable. How could Fluttershy, the most kind and sweetest pony they knew, commit such a horrible act? It was like Rarity saying that jewels were worth no more than dirt.
Shaking out of her stupor, a livid Applejack scowled in disgust. “Ya’ll mean to tell me ya just went out there and sabotaged Rainbow’s dreams?! How could ya! What the hay we’re ya thinkin’ girl?! That’s gotta be one of the most lowest and underhanded things ah’ve ever heard!”
“Applejack!” Rarity tried to put a hoof over the earth pony’s mouth, but the damage was already done.
“No... she’s right... I don’t even know why I did it... I... I just... just leave me alone!” With speed to rival Rainbow Dash, Fluttershy flew away. Like a blur, she was back up the stairs and out of sight. The slam of a door echoed across the house followed by loud sobs. Angel gave the two a glare and pointed to the front door before he hopped back to his mistress.
Rarity glared at Applejack. “Now look what you’ve done! You know how sensitive she is!”
Applejack shifted her hooves. “It just ain’t right is all ah’m sayin’.”
“Yes, I agree with you. At the same time, this is Fluttershy! Fluttershy! You and I both know that she would never do something like this without a reason!” shouted Rarity.
Applejack snorted. “Sorry for speakin’ mah mind. Besides, what good reason is there for lyin’ to a friend and betrayin’ her?”
“Well, maybe we would have found out the reason if somepony didn’t shoot her mouth off!” retorted Rarity. “Either way, it doesn’t matter now. Fluttershy’s not going to talk to us in this state. We need to focus on making her and Rainbow Dash friends again.”
“Ah’ll agree with ya on that. Question is how we gonna do it? Ah doubt Rainbow’s in the forgivin’ kind of mood,” said Applejack. “Ah mean, if ah was in Dash’s hooves ah’d be angrier than a kicked hornet’s nest.”
“Let’s go see her anyway. Maybe if we tell her how guilty Fluttershy is she might consider talking to her at least,” said rarity.
“And if that don’t work?”
Rarity didn’t answer. Casting one last worried glance to the stairs, the two of them left Fluttershy’s house.
Up from her bedroom, Fluttershy watched as her two friends galloped onto the road before she slowly made her way back to her bed, flopping onto it. She couldn’t blame her friends for hating her and leaving. After all, who would want to stay with a lying, horrible pony like her? Applejack’s outburst was enough proof that her friends were disappointed in her; even in Rarity’s eyes Fluttershy saw a hint of frustration.
It wouldn’t take long for her terrible deed to spread all over Ponyville; soon nopony will want to be with her. And why should they? She was a monster.
I don't deserve any of them...
Raising her head, Fluttershy decided there was only one thing to do. Dragging her hooves, the dejected mare walked to her closet and pulled out her saddlebags, packing a few clothes and what little possessions she had. Lifting her eyes to her dresser, Fluttershy spotted the photo of her and all the other wielders of the Elements of Harmony. Cradling it in her hooves, Fluttershy stared at the five ponies who she had called friends, maybe even sisters.
Warm, salty teardrops rained on the glass-covered photo. With a heavy heart the pegasus put it in her saddlebags. Sighing, she flew over to her desk, grabbed a quill and a piece of parchment, and after blinking away her tears, began to write...
Rarity liked to think of herself as a patient mare. After all, when one was a lady one had to be calm and collected when one doesn’t get results one wants. Getting worked up didn’t do anything but make you look immature. But sometimes...
“Rainbow Dash! For the hundredth time, get down here now!" shrilled Rarity, glaring daggers up at the cloud house above her.
Applejack removed her hooves from her ears. “Geez, Rarity. Scream any louder and yer gonna be losin’ that voice of yers."
“Well, I wouldn’t be so angry Applejack... if somepony actually answered after the last fifteen calls!” Rarity shouted so loud Applejack could swear her ears were starting to bleed.
This time they got results. An annoyed Rainbow Dash leaned over the edge of her cloud home. “Can’t a pegasus get some sleep?! You’re loud enough to wake the dead!”
“We need to talk to ya, sugarcube. Mind comin’ down to talk?” asked Applejack. Rarity remained silent, focusing on calming herself down.
Rainbow Dash groaned before gliding down to her friends. “Alright, just make it quick, I’m busy.”
“Listen, Rainbow. We need to talk about you and Fluttershy,” said Rarity, her voice slightly raspy.
The moment they mentioned Fluttershy's name, Rainbow gritted her teeth and huffed. Rarity felt her nerves jump at the sight of Dash’s raging eyes that looked ready to start a firestorm. “Why do we need to talk about... her?”
Rarity laughed nervously as she slowly got behind Applejack who wasn’t the least bit phased. Applejack stepped up and stared down right back at Rainbow Dash. “Listen, Rainbow. We know what happened and ya have a right to be angry, but Fluttershy...’
“Oh, so you know what that backstabbing liar did, huh? I don’t wanna even talk about her, much less hear about her.” Dash attempted to fly away, but Applejack quickly snapped her teeth onto the her tail just as she left the ground.
Rainbow Dash tried to fight her way free, beating her wings so fast it caused a small dust storm that nearly blinded Applejack and Rarity. Despite this, Applejack refused to let go and held her grip on the tail even tighter. After a few more attempts to escape, Rainbow Dash sighed in frustration and settled back down on the ground. Spitting out the tail—as well as gagging a bit by the taste—Applejack continued, “Now listen here, partner. I understand yer upset, but that poor filly’s gone and locked herself up. She’s been cryin’ over what’s she’s done and feels like the worst. Ah think ya’ll need to talk about what happened.”
“Talk? There’s no need to talk. I hate her...” muttered Rainbow Dash.
Rarity walked from behind Applejack and stood side by side with the farmer. “Come on, Rainbow Dash. You and Fluttershy have been best friends for a long time. Don’t tell me you're going to let this one mistake she made ruin that friendship.”
Dash went up to Rarity’s stunned face and yelled, “One mistake?! How would you like if you’d had gotten an offer to be a top store owner in Canterlot and then learned that your best friend hid the letter for you?! What would happen if you found out that you can’t get that offer back until three years later?! How would you feel to have somepony you trusted, somepony you shared your dreams with, shatter that dream after everything you’ve done to help her with her own?!” Rarity opened her mouth to retort, but Dash’s inquires rang in her head, stopping her voice. Her eyes drifted downward as Dash snorted. “Yeah, just like I thought.”
“Look, we all agree that what Fluttershy did was wrong,” said Applejack, stepping in between Rarity and Rainbow Dash. “But can’t ya just hear Fluttershy out? Fluttershy’s sorry! Really sorry! Ah’ve never seen a pony look guiltier in all my life. Can’t ya just hear her out!”
Rainbow Dash grumbled and lifted herself into the air. “I don’t care what her reason is... I’m not listening.”
“Honestly, Rainbow Dash. She made a mistake and we all make mistakes.” said Rarity. She raised a hoof and pointed it at the angry mare. “What about the time you made that dragon nearly eat us from your brash little charge? Who was it that saved us? Fluttershy—the one you doubted could do anything to help us.”
“Well...” Rainbow muttered, but Rarity raised her voice again.
“Or that time you and Applejack—no offence darling—got so worked up in that competition that you ended up missing half the leaves for the trees?” Rarity speared Rainbow with an accusing glare that made Dash shift uncomfortably, lowering herself closer to the ground.
“That’s...” Rainbow was interrupted again when Rarity stepped past Applejack and glared right above the accused pegasus.
“And remember when all of us thought Zecora was an evil witch?” asked Rarity. “We were so short sighted that none of us thought to even talk to Zecora or even question what she did. You're doing the same thing, Rainbow Dash. You getting angry at Fluttershy and jumping to conclusions before asking yourself why Fluttershy—who’s never hurt anypony before—did this to you!”
“What good reason is there to stop me from achieving my dream?!” A herd of birds squawked in fear and flew away, frightened by Rainbow Dash’s shout.
“I don't know, but that’s why you need to talk to her. You can’t run from this, Rainbow Dash. You and Fluttershy just can’t let this one incident ruin the friendship you’ve both had for so long!” argued Rarity. Rainbow just turned away with a growl as Rarity finished her attack. “Ask yourself this Rainbow Dash. After everything the two of you have been through, do you really want to end it here? Do you really want to lose her, Dash? Do you?!”
The three ponies stayed in silence for a while. Rarity and Applejack held their breaths as the angry creases on Dash’s face began to fade. “I’ll think about it...”
In a flash, the rainbow-maned flier was off, heading back to her home where the two grounded ponies heard a door slam. Rarity sighed in dismay. “Well, not as bad as it could have been... it’s a start.”
Applejack shook her head. “Ah can’t believe this. Both of ‘em are bein’ impossible. Fluttershy for refusin’ to answer and that bonehead up there is refusin’ to even listen.”
“We need to get Twilight and Pinkie involved. Maybe they might have an idea?” suggested Rarity .
“Sounds like a plan. Head on over to Ponyville and get’em. Ah’ll meet ya’ll later at Twilight’s.” said Applejack. She then galloped away—but to Rarity confusion Applejack it was towards in the opposite direction of town.
“Wait! Where are you going?!” asked Rarity.
“Ah’m gonna see if ah can get Fluttershy to come! Maybe she’s calmed down enough to explain more!” shouted Applejack as she made her way back to the cottage. Rarity silently wished the farmer luck as she made her own way back to Ponyville.
Galloping at top speed, Applejack made it back to Fluttershy’s cottage in no time at all. When she arrived at the wooden home, she was surprised to find a saddened Angel outside the door. When she got closer, Applejack was shocked to find the rabbit next to a pool of tears.
“Angel? What’s wrong?” asked Applejack. The rabbit slowly lifted his fuzzy paw and pointed to the door. She saw a note taped to the front and got closer for a better look. Looking at it, Applejack gasped as her eyes skimmed over the small, yet careful handwriting.
I’m no longer worthy of being a friend or a caretaker. I’ve done nothing but hurt the ones I care about and ruined the life of my closest friend. She’s done nothing but support me and when she needed me most I failed her because I was afraid. Afraid of losing her to her dream and afraid of losing the bond we once shared. But now my actions have destroyed that bond and it’s too late to do anything to fix it.
She hates me and now the rest of my friends hate me. I’m a monster who deserves nothing more than to be with other monsters. So I’m heading into the Everfree Forest forever. That way nopony can ever be harmed by me ever again. Everypony is better off without me and should just forget about me. It’s what I deserve.
P.S. Somepony tell Rainbow Dash that I’m sorry. I’ve always believed she’ll make it into the Wonderbolts someday and I know one day she will.
End of Chapter
“You think you know me...”
Sorry this took so long to get out guys. Anyway, next up we enter the Everfree Forest. And no, that won’t be the last chapter. This story still has some ways to go.
(Plays Metalingus by Alter Bridge)