After arriving back at her hut, a strange scene awaited her inside. The pony,who had been resting on the makeshift bed the night before, no longer rested there. He was lying on top of a very, very embarrassed looking Fluttershy, who let out a small squeak of distress. Fluttershy was a yellow pony about as tall as Zecora with a pink mane, three butterflies for a cutiemark and light blue eyes.
"Well this sight is something new, why is he on top of you?" Zecora asked with a sly, mocking smile.
"U-ummm…. W-w-well…." Fluttershy stammered out bashfully “It all started this morning…”
Earlier that day
It was a remotely normal day for Fluttershy; she had woken up to the sounds of birds singing and the roosters’ cock-a-doodle-doo-ing. Looking out the window she saw that the sun was just beginning to raise, its bright orange and yellow shade mixing into the now brightening sky.
She admired the sight until the sun had officially risen, then proceeded with her daily duties. First, for breakfast, she had a bowl of cereal and a muffin. After finishing her morning meal she proceeded to get breakfast for her pet bunny, Angel. After arguing for a bit and two time outs, Angel finally ate his breakfast, after whichFluttershy made her way outside, where she spent the next few hours feeding the many animals that she cared for.
Having finished taking care of all of the animals earlier than usual, she decided to relax under a nearby tree. Her mind began to wander over what she might be able to do with the rest of her day. ‘Well… I could go and see my friends, that might be nice,’ she considered. ‘But they might have stuff they have to do, and I wouldn't want to burden them.’
She sighed contently, enjoying the warm breeze from under the shade of the tree ‘Maybe I should take a page from Rainbow Dash’s book, relax under this tree, enjoy the weather, and take a nice nap,’ she wondered, yawning at the thought.
‘Actually, on second thought, if I do that then I won't be around to help if something bad happens…’ with that thought in mind, she started to panic, thinking of all the things that could go wrong. "What if I’m not awake and a creature from the forest attacks somepony? What if a dragon shows up and starts chomping down the ponies in ponyville? WHAT IF IT EATS MY FRIENDS!" She exclaimed.
While this was happening, she didn't notice the orange mare with a blonde mane and a stetson walking up to her, pulling a cart filled with apples. As the mare got close to Fluttershy, she greeted her friend. “Howdy Shy, Ah w-”
Her sentence was interrupted by a tackling hug from Fluttershy. "NO! I don't want you to be eaten by a big mean dragon!"
"Wait, wait, wait, hold on. What dragon?" Applejack asked curiously.
Applejack was an orange earth pony with a blond mane, a stetson, and a cutiemark of three apples.
"Wh-wh-what?" Fluttershy stuttered out. After realizing what she had just done she quickly jumped off of her friend and blushed heavily.
Applejack cocked an eyebrow, "The dragon, y’know, the one you were yellin' 'bout just now."
"Oh umm…" Fluttershy hid her face in her mane, a blush quickly growing on her face. "There is no dragon, I was just worrying for nothing."
Applejack simply shrugged and walked over to the cart she had been pulling. “Not the weirdest thing that’s happened ta me today,” she gestured to the tipped over cart of apples. "Well,here’s those apples ya asked for, though I can't guarantee none of 'em are bruised now.”
Fluttershy quickly began helping Applejack put all of the apples back into the cart. "Thank you very much Applejack, I needed them, I just used the last of them to feed the flamingos and goats."
They pulled the cart back to her cottage and as soon as the apples were gone from the cart, Applejack was off to get back to work at the farm ‘At least I have something to feed those goats this time, I was worried I would have a repeat of last time,’ Fluttershy shuddered at the thought.‘No. Never again.’
As she put away the rest of the apples, she was confronted with the same problem as earlier; she had nothing to do with her day.Once again she found herself sitting against the tree, her eyes slowly wandering over the animals when it came upon one of her hummingbird friends that was still recovering from a broken wing.‘Oh yeah! I still need to get those kava leaves from Miss Zecora!’
Fluttershy was too deep in thought to notice when she had entered the Everfree forest, so she didn’t notice the absolute lack of creatures throughout the forest, though it would have only been brought to her attention if she had actually seen another creature in the forest during her walk.
After about 20 minutes of walking at a steady pace, she finally arrived at Zecoras hut. Arriving at the zebras hut brought her to the realization that she had just walked through the Everfree Forest, the Everfree Forest…"AAAAHHHHHH!" She screamed, opening the door, running in, and slamming it behind herself. ‘What if something had been stalking me during my walk? What if I had been attacked while I wasn't paying enough attention to run? What if I walked through poison joke without noticing?’
She took a deep breath and spoke aloud. "Now Fluttershy stop worrying, nothing happened, you’re fine, there’s nothing to worry about,"
As she finally began to calm down, a loud groan came from across the room, causing her to squeak very loudly and hide behind her mane. "I’m sorry for disturbing you Zecora, I just wanted to know if you had gathered the kava I asked you for, but if you haven’t that’s okay."
She stood still, looking at the ground, waiting for a response, but one never came.Looking over to the source of the noise, she found not Zecora, but a very damaged looking pony lying on the bed across the room. At least he seemed to be damaged; he wore a torn and tattered cloak that covered his whole body so she couldn’t really tell.
"Oh I’m so sorry if I disturbed your nap, I was just looking for Zecora, do you know where she went?" Fluttershy asked quietly, receiving only a groan in response.
"Umm excuse me mister or misses pony are you okay?" she walked over to where he lay and looked down at him.‘I wonder why his face is covered by a hood….’ She slowly began reaching for the hood to see what he looked like. Unfortunately, she stretched her body too far and fell onto the edge of the bed, fell off and landed on her back. Because of the sudden shift of body weight, the pony in the cloak fell on top of her. A few moments later Zecora walked in.
One explanation later…
"…and right after that happened you walked in," Fluttershy finished, happy that Zecora had helped move the pony off of her.
"I see. So that is what did happen, but why is he still unconscious then?" Zecora asked, gesturing to the seemingly unconscious pony.
Though he had woken up as they were putting him up on the bed, he chose now to speak up "I am awake, I have been since you helped me off of that yellow mare,” he explained hoarsely.
"It seems you are conscious, but until you get water, you should talk less. Excuse me for a moment, while I get you a refreshment.”
That left Fluttershy alone with the now conscious pony. "So…. you heard all of that?" she asked
"Yes, I was listening and I am sorry for falling on you," he said quietly, so he wouldn't strain his voice trying to talk again.
Fluttershy was surprised by his sudden apology.‘Usually I'm the one apologizing for something I didn't do…’ "Don't worry it wasn't your fault, you were unconscious."
After finally gathering up enough courage to ask him about his cloak, Zecora walked in carrying a bucket full of water. "Sorry for the long wait, I had run out of water as of late," she explained, pouring some into a glass and taking it over to the hooded pony. She slowly tilted the glass up, allowing him to drink at a careful pace. "Thanks! I feel like I haven't had anything to drink in an eternity!" he said finishing off the glass of water. "Thank you, miss….?" He left the end of the question unanswered hoping that the zebra would finish the question, thus introducing herself.
"Zecora is what I am called, I have gone by it since I have crawled," she answered smiling.
"Nice to meet you miss Zecora, and I assume that the pony next to you would be Miss Fluttershy then?" He finished gesturing his head over to the yellow pony.
"Yes, it is nice to meet you too mister…." Fluttershy said copying what he had done to find out Zecora’s name.
"Oh, of course how rude of me, my name is…." Once again he was reminded that he had no memory to speak of. "I would tell you if I knew, but I don't really remember anything about myself."
"Oh you poor thing!" Fluttershy said, her inner mother taking over as she hurried over and hugged the colt in his bed.
"As much as I appreciate your kindness Miss Fluttershy, most of the bones in my body are broken, so if you could please release your grip…" he said in a strained voice.
"Oh I’m so sorry!" Fluttershy apologized,jumping away from him.
"It's alright; I didn't know that most of my bones were broken until a few moments ago, when I was placed back on the bed. Now, would you two kind ponies help me come up with a new name? Until I find out who I am, I would like to be known as something other than ‘that strange pony’ or ‘it’ or just ‘pony’," he asked politely.
"Oh, of course! But it might help if I saw what you look like…." Fluttershy hinted, hoping to see what was wrong with him.
"A good idea that is not, for in a state of shock you would be caught," Zecora quickly chimed in.
Fluttershy quickly regretted her suggestion. "That’s okay then, why don’t you come up with a name Zecora?”
"Alright, first thing after I get out of this bed I am going to check what I look like," the colt decided "but first,we should come up with a name."
After thinking it over a bit, Zecora finally decided on a name. "How about Midnight Star? It fits your situation so far."
With questioning looks from both ponies she explained what had happened the night before.
"Midnight Star…" he said slowly "I like it," he decided
"I like it too, it’s a good name," Fluttershy smiled encouragingly, then turned to Zecora. "Why were you in town? I thought you only went into town for food and herb supplies?"
Zecora took a moment to explain why she went into town, and what happened when she was there.
After hearing the story, Star sighed. "I hope I don't have anything to do with this ‘Discord’character, that would be bad." both Zecora and Fluttershy nodded their heads in agreement.
Fluttershy’s eyes absently wandered over to the window, where she saw the sun was just starting to set. "Oh my gosh! I’ve been here for hours! Angel is going to be very upset with me!" she exclaimed, almost dashing out the door before stopping, remembering why she was here in the first place. "I am so forgetful, Zecora may I have the kava leaves that I asked you to gather?"
Walking over to her saddlebag Zecora pulled out a small pouch filled with the plant and gave it to Fluttershy. "it was nice to meet you Midnight Star, goodbye to you both!" she said rushing out the door.
"Well, she is interesting," Star commented as she left, then looked over to Zecora. "Thank you, it was nice finally knowing who saved my life and learning something to refer to myself as," he said looking over to Zecora.
"Yes it was fun, but for the best, you should lie down, and get some rest," she advised, walking over to her own room, the only other room in the entire hut, and bid him goodnight. Midnight Star almost immediately fell asleep thinking of the events of the day.