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I glanced out the window, staring glumly at the grey November skies. At least it hadn’t snowed yet. My lab partner poked my arm. “Denise, we need to work.”
“Right.” I turned back to the project in front of us. We’d done the lab—now came the paperwork. Luckily, I had an Asian for that.
Meeko was perhaps the best typist I had ever seen. I had never asked if she knew her name was the same as an animated raccoon. Maybe if it ever came up in conversation… I shook my head. Too many distractions. Earlier, I had been wondering how the variances in skin color and features among people appeared to ponies. Probably not too varied, considering the bright variety of hues ponies were colored.
“Are you hungry?” Meeko asked. “Maybe that’s why you can’t focus.”
It was true that we’d both been there far longer than the class actually lasted. Such is the nature of lab reports. I nodded. “Yeah, I suppose I could eat.”
“Let’s order something,” she said, pulling out her phone. “I don’t think either of us can spare the time to leave.”
That was true, not with the report due tomorrow. I was glad someone with a strong work ethic was my lab partner. Then again, if it was even stronger maybe we wouldn’t be in a desperate, final-night situation.
“How does Jimmy John’s sound?” asked Meeko.
I remembered that I had some cash. “That’s fine. I’ll have whatever you’re having.”
She made the call and I tried to keep my mind on the report. Only a few minutes later, the door burst open to reveal a uniformed mare. “Jimmy John’s – world’s fastest sandwich delivery!”
“That was fast!” exclaimed Meeko. She knew Rainbow was my roommate, so there was no surprise in seeing a multicolored pegasus bringing us dinner.
I commented, “That’s nothing; you should see her fly.”
Rainbow was breathing hard from sprinting, but she smiled at the complement. Opening her saddlebags, she gave us our sandwiches and drinks. “Here’s what you ordered.”
She made change from a small coin purse worn on her fetlock. We thanked her again, and she shot back out the door.
Meeko and I managed to get the report done within the next hour and I headed back to the dorm. Rainbow’s delivery to us must have been one of the last of her shift, because she was there when I got back.
“The sandwich was good, thanks.” I knew Rainbow had nothing to do with making them, but I had appreciated the meal.
I sat down. “I had a question. In fact, I’m a little surprised it hasn’t come up before. Do ponies have a hard time telling people apart?”
Rainbow looked up. “What, do you think that you all look the same to me?”
I shrugged. Rainbow thought for a moment. “No, actually. I think the differences in people makes it pretty easy to tell them apart. The main difference in ponies is color. In fact, the facial structure in most ponies is similar. There are some differences in eyebrows or how they use their expressions, but a colorblind pony has a real problem telling to faces apart.”
“Interesting.” I thought for a moment. “So can you easily distinguish between people based on faces?”
“Actually, smell is more useful,” Rainbow replied. “With my job, I see a lot of people every day.”
I had read somewhere that pony senses, especially smell and hearing, were somewhat sharper than human. “So should I start taking more showers?”
Rainbow laughed. “Trust me, as far as olfactory offenders go, you aren't on the list.”
Surprised, I asked, “When did you start learning words like that?”
“It's amazing what you can pick up in the delivery business.”