Hello. I'm BillyColt. In real life, I'm a dweeby music student from California. Here, I write Pony fanfiction.
29w, 1dEQD Story Compedium
1w, 11hUpcoming Story 0 comments · 18 views
4w, 1dWhy I'm a Fan of Fallout: Equestria 3 comments · 126 views
7w, 5dWhere the stories are 1 comments · 36 views
10w, 5dRevision 3 comments · 40 views
11w, 6dGyuh 11 comments · 95 views
15w, 6dBack! 1 comments · 53 views
17w, 5dHeads-Up 1 comments · 34 views
20w, 3dStart of Part 3 2 comments · 32 views
21w, 5dThat Time of Year... 3 comments · 66 views
Ritardando had been given a relatively simple task. A few weeks ago, Gold Standard had plastered fliers all over town, indicating there was a special sale. Well, now the sale was over, and she now had to disappoint everypony who came by inquiring about the sale. Unfortunately, as she was too busy managing the place to go out and take them down, so she asked Ritardando to do it.
Ritardando didn’t really have any difficulty with it, save for the fact that he frequently found himself distracted.
For example, the abandoned theatre. He knew he wasn’t supposed to go inside again, but he just wanted to look at it.
Besides, he thought, maybe there was a flier on the building that he could take down (there wasn’t). Though he didn’t actually walk up to the building – he just stood and looked at it.
“Just what are you thinking of doing?” Asked a voice. Ritardando jumped, startled. He looked around for the source of the voice. “Up here,” it said.
Ritardando looked up. There, sitting on a grey cloud, was Raincloud, looking down at him.
“Well?” she asked.
“Oh, nothing!” Ritardando said.
“Not surprising.” Raincloud muttered under her breath. “I don’t suggest you hang around here for very long. Brownie might think you look suspicious.”
“But I’m not suspicious!” Ritardando protested.
“Honestly,” Raincloud said, “I believe you. Just stay out of the building. We just don’t use it.”
“But why?” Ritardando asked, walking away and resuming his task of looking for fliers. “I mean, I went inside, and the place didn’t seem run-down or anything – why not use it?”
“Asbestos.” Raincloud said very, very flatly.
Ritardando paused. “Heeey, wait a minute…” he looked up at her. She raised an eyebrow. “That’s not a real sentence!”
“Huh?” She asked.
“‘As best us?’ What does that even mean?” He asked. Seeing the expression on her face, he realized that he’d misunderstood. An awkward silence passed, until at length, he said, “‘as pest us?’”
“We don’t have many big performing arts ponies here.” She said, trying to find terms that he’d recognize.
“Oh.” He said. “That stinks.”
He looked off in the distance. There was a house a fair ways away from the rest of the town. Maybe there was a flier there, he thought, and began walking off in that direction.
“Uhh…” Raincloud said. “That’s Phoenix’s place. Why are you going there?”
“To get fliers!”
“I, uhh… there aren’t any there.” She said. “Trust me.”
“You’ve already checked?” Ritardando asked, stopping.
Raincloud was quiet for a second. “Wow. He actually got me there.” She muttered to herself. Of course, Ritardando had resumed walking there by the time she decided on what else to say.
She opened her mouth, and then decided to just let him go. Not her problem.
Ritardando resumed walking up to what he’d been told was Phoenix’s house. It was a large building on the outskirts of the town, surrounded by a dirty, crumbling fence and with an uninviting path leading up to the front door. He saw that the front gate was open, and walked into the front yard. Looking around, he saw that there were no fliers stuck to the wall. He was about to turn around and leave when he heard a noise.
It was a chirping sound, coming from an open window. He walked up to the window, slowly, and peered inside. It seemed to be a study, with a desk and several bookcases (and a mess of books piled onto the desk), but the source of the noise had been a small, gilded birdcage next to the desk.
Inside the cage was a tiny blackbird, chirping.
“Oh, hi!” Ritardando said, leaning against the open window. “What’s your name?” he asked.
The bird cocked its head at him, and then gave another chirp.
“Oh, I forgot, birds can’t talk…” Ritardando said, ears drooping. “But you can sing! I like singing, too.”
The bird chirped inquisitively.
Ritardando cleared his throat. “Ahem.” And then he started singing. “Blackbird singing in the dead of night…”
“What are you doing?”
Ritardando was so surprised he nearly jumped through the window. He turned around. It was Phoenix.
“Well?” he asked impatiently.
“Ah-ah-ah-I I didn’t mean to intrude-“
“Oh, goooood!” Phoenix said in a sarcastic, slightly higher-pitched voice. “Then DON’T!” he bellowed. Ritardando went barreling out of his front yard, back into town. Phoenix watched him as he ran off, before shutting the window and entering through the front door.
Ritardando bolted back into town, and into Gold Standard’s shop. He slammed the door shut and leaned against it, breathing heavily. Gold Standard looked at him from the counter, surprised. Raincloud was also there, and looked at him.
“I told you.” Raincloud said in a flat voice.
“Ritardando? What happened?” Goldie asked.
“I took down the fliers,” he responded.
“Don’t ask,” Raincloud said.
“All of them?”
“Well, you can go out and check some more tomorrow. Thank you.” Goldie said, returning to her business with Raincloud (“Don’t ask,” she said).
Ritardando and nodded, heading to the staircase at the back of the store and climbing up. From there, he made his way down the hallway to the spare room that Goldie had allowed him to take up residence.
The room had a bed and a nightstand, upon which Ritardando’s worldly possessions (several sheets of music paper and a harmonica, among other things) were strewn, the empty saddlebags at the foot of the bed.
He walked over to the window, looking in the direction of Phoenix’s house (likely in part to make sure he hadn’t followed him). That Phoenix owned a pet bird surprised him, and he was disappointed that he wasn’t able to sing for longer.
He was, however, quickly removed from his train of thought by a bright blue kite sailing past his window. He stared blankly at it, entranced by the pretty colors, before noticing that there was someone holding onto it from the other end.
It was Kite. She didn’t notice him, however, as she had her eyes fixed on the kite.
She likes kites, Ritardando figured. He looked around at the town from the window, and realized he was able to see the other ponies going about their business.
He saw Raincloud exit the shop with what appeared to be a large roll of string. She walked over to Kite, who nodded appreciatively. This confused Ritardando, so he promptly turned his attention to something else.
He also saw Constable Brownie, making what appeared to be routine rounds around the town. Ritardando wondered if that ever got boring.
Then, he saw Phoenix walking down the road, and he felt a sinking feeling in his stomach. He watched in horror as the colt made his way into the shop.
He sat there for a minute, terrified. Then, shutting the window, he bolted out of his room and down the staircase.
“…And let me make it clear that if I want a visitor, I will ask for one.”
There’s a good reason that one shouldn’t run down a staircase.
“That will be all for now.” Phoenix said, turning and leaving.
“Ritardando!” Goldie exclaimed. “Are you alright?”
Ritardando sheepishly sat up. “I was just looking for fliers…”