Male. Australian. Slightly crazy. Clop writer extraordinaire. Changeling cuddler/aficionado. Wars fought. Grammar corrected. Haters incinerated. Leader. Lover. And painfully average in all areas.
32w, 2dThe Friend Zone
FridayWIP of AotH new chapter 6 comments · 184 views
WednesdayLoopholes are magic! 18 comments · 271 views
1w, 6d[Spoilers] 25 comments · 469 views
3w, 3dMore art! 33 comments · 458 views
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“You two know it’s rude to stare, right?”
Sentinel and Raindrop both blinked, and then looked away at the same time, chagrined.
The nurse snorted faintly and shook her head, picking up a fork and slipping another piece of eggplant into her mouth, chewing on it placidly.
Raindrop and Sentinel exchanged glances, and the Raindrop took a tentative step forward, clearing her throat.
The nurse took a sip of orange juice, and then looked up, raising a brow. “Yes? Do you need more relationship advice? I’ll have you know, I’m going to start charging.”
“We would hardly interrupt your breakfast for just that,” Raindrop said with a shake of her head. “We uhm... Well, I’m not quite sure how to say it.”
The nurse perked an ear at that, and then rolled her eyes. “You open your mouth, move your tongue a bit, and exhale.”
“You’re the Element of Kindness,” Raindrop blurted, staring at her.
The nurse raised a brow at that, looking up at the two pegasi over the top of her breakfast, before sniffing faintly. “Preposterous.”
“Well, you kinda gave us good advice,” Sentinel chipped in, stepping forwards.
“Advice is not kindness,” the nurse said with a shrug of her shoulders. “Kindness is being nice to ponies. And I’m not usually that nice. I can actually be kind of a bitch.”
Raindrop exchanged another glance with Sentinel, not sure if she should agree with the nurse’s words. “But... The Seeker Stone was pointing right at you.”
“Let me see this ‘stone’,” the nurse said, lifting a hoof, making a beckoning motion.
Sentinel shuffled over closer, and offered up the Seeker Stone. It was still fragmented with white lies, pointing in every direction.
“It’s not even pointing anywhere,” the nurse said dismissively, pushing it back towards the guard.
“That’s what happens whenever we get really close to the bearer,” Raindrop pointed out.
The nurse sniffed again, and then shrugged slightly. “Seems a silly process, that. What if they’re in a crowd?”
“Then we have to search them out,” Raindrop said with a frown. “But either way... You’re not in a crowd. It was pointing at you.”
“Even so, I’m just a nurse. I have a job to do. I can’t go off on flights of fancy at a whim,” the nurse said with a wave of her hoof.
“You obviously know about the things that are going on, right?” Raindrop queried, perking an ear.
“You seem to have dark guards, griffins, and everypony else trying to harm you, and you’re searching for the Elements of Harmony. And their bearers, apparently,” the nurse said with a slight shrug of her shoulders.
Raindrop exchanged an awkward glance with Sentinel, and then looked back at the nurse. “...Nopony ever told you about the changelings?”
“Changelings?” the nurse asked, wrinkling her nose. Goodness gracious no. They got wiped out before I was even born.”
Raindrop gave a nervous laugh. “Funny story there.”
The nurse raised a brow slowly.
“The changelings are back. They’re kinda... Everywhere. From what I’ve seen. They’re part of the Diamond Dogs... Or maybe all of the Diamond Dogs were actually changelings... Their queen, Chitin, was masquerading as Discord. They also masqueraded as a griffon army. That’s why we ended up in hospital last time,” Raindrop said with a nod, watching the nurse.
The nurse absorbed all of this information, and then blinked once, raising a brow at Raindrop. “Quite a story there.”
“You don’t believe me,” Raindrop stated flatly, ears pinning back.
“Changelings? No. That’s silly.”
Raindrop sighed and then shook her head slowly.
“You wouldn’t take the word of a Royal Guard?” Sentinel asked, stepping up to stand beside Raindrop.
“I tend not to believe in that which I cannot see.”
“So... You don’t believe the changelings could possibly exist in this day and age?” Raindrop queried flatly.
The nurse nodded once.
Raindrop sniffed, and then turned to Sentinel. “Sentinel, hun. What’s your favorite colour?”
Sentinel blinked, and then pondering on that for a moment, before saying, bewildered, “White, why?”
Raindrop nodded and then turned back to the nurse.
The nurse blinked once, her ears splaying backwards as she stood up from her seat, taking a step away from the table. “H-how did you do that?”
Raindrop grinned, and blinked once. Her eyes went from a strange milky white colour, to their normal pink, in an instant. “I dunno. You’ll have to explain that one to me, I’m afraid. There aren’t any changelings left... So it can’t be that.”
The nurse looked back and forth between them both, her eyes narrowing. “Explain yourselves, now!”
Sentinel raised a hoof to try and calm the nurse. “Raindrop isn’t a changeling.”
“Not... Entirely.” Raindrop grinned eerily as she corrected the guard.
“Then what the hell are you?”
“My grandmother was Queen Chrysalis. So I guess that makes me... An eighth of a changeling?” Raindrop pondered on that for a moment, humming and rubbing her chin with a hoof.
“Wouldn’t it be a quarter?” Sentinel suggested.
“A quarter sounds about right,” Raindrop conceded, looking at the nurse again. “Do you believe us about the changelings yet?”
The nurse frowned deeply, and then cautiously sat back down, chasing a piece of eggplant across her plate with her fork. “I... I guess your story might make some things make sense.”
“Good. We need you as a bearer,” Raindrop stated flatly.
“But... Why me?” the nurse asked, frowning deeply.
“Because you’re a kind pony?” Raindrop suggested with a helpless shrug. “I know as much about the way bearers are chosen as I do on theoretical flight magic physics.”
“And if I don’t want to be a bearer?” the nurse asked guardedly, ears perking at Raindrop.
Sentinel stepped forwards. “We’ll have to keep injuring ourselves until you get sick of us.”
The nurse scoffed at that, shaking her head. “I wish I didn’t believe you two would willingly hurt yourselves to make me do anything. But fine. What is it that you would have me do?”
“Report to Celestia. She’ll know what to do next,” Raindrop said, waving a hoof slightly.
The nurse nodded gently, and then looked down at her plate, her ears splaying backwards. “Can I finish my breakfast first?”
“Surely,” Raindrop replied with a gentle nod. “Uhm... I never did quite catch your name.”
“No one ever asks the nurse her name,” was the quiet reply, followed by a faint sigh. “I’m Remedy. Nurse Remedy.”
“It’s very nice to meet you, Nurse Remedy,” Raindrop said politely, her expression turning chagrined. “I don’t think I ever thanked you for your advice and for treating me.”
Remedy waved it off with a dismissive flick of her hoof. “No, it’s fine. I just hate it when ponies pussy-hoof around eachother. You two belong together, everypony can see it.”
“They... Can?” Sentinel interjected, perking his ears.
“If they know what to look for... Or if, you know, they have eyes.” Remedy smirked faintly as she ate another piece of eggplant.
“You’ll report to Celestia?” Raindrop asked.
“Yes, yes. I’ll go... But... Can you come with me?” Remedy asked, her voice no more than a murmur.
Raindrop raised a brow slowly. “You’re scared?”
Remedy scowled faintly in response. “I am not scared! I just...” her voice lowered, “It’s Princess Celestia. I don’t want to face her alone!”
“She’s not going to eat you,” Sentinel said with a soft chuckle.
“I know that!” Remedy protested. “But still...”
“I shall go with you to the castle,” Sentinel said with a laugh and a shake of his head. “Raindrop, do you want to come with?”
Raindrop pondered for a moment, and then looked to the right, at the Inn, a slow smile coming over her. “Actually, you have fun with that hun. I’m gonna do some stuff. Ask the innkeeper what room I’ll be in, okay?”
Sentinel blinked once, raising an eyebrow at Raindrop for a moment, before nodding. “Very well. I’ll be back once I’ve been to see Celestia.”
A short train ride later, and the two ponies were walking through the front gates of the Canterlot Royal Palace. Sentinel nodded to the guards as they moved aside to allow the pegasus and earth pony nurse into the palace itself. After that, it was a short walk up to the Hall of Elements, where Celestia was maintaining an almost permanent presence.
Remedy seemed to be getting more and more nervous the closer they got to the Hall of Elements, and she twitched slightly whenever a loud sound echoed.
Sentinel pushed the door open to the room where the Elements were stored, and ushered Remedy inside. The nurse stepped through the door nervously, her eyes widening as she caught sight of Celestia.
“Princess Celestia, I have brought Remedy to you. We believe that she is the bearer for the Element of Kindness.” Sentinel saluted as Celestia turned around.
“Ahhh, Miss Remedy. Welcome,” Celestia said, bowing her head smoothly.
Remedy flushed faintly, her ears pinning back as she bowed jerkily in response. “T-thank you Princess Celestia.”
“Take this,” Celestia said, offering Remedy the dull grey, stony Element of Kindness.
The nurse reached out, taking the element, looking bewildered.
“Now tell me...” Celestia paused for a moment, thinking. “Why did you become a nurse?”
“Because it pays well,” Remedy said immediately.
Celestia tutted faintly. “You will have to cease with the modesty, I’m afraid, or we will get nowhere. Why did you really become a nurse?”
“It’s... It’s a stupid story.” Remedy shook her head, moving to place down the element. “This is stupid.”
Celestia shook her head gently, and then lifted her hooves, pushing the element back against Remedy’s chest. “No, tell me, Remedy.”
Remedy sighed faintly, and then looked down at the element in her hooves, before closing her eyes. “Because of my grandfather.”
“He was kind?” Celestia enquired.
“Not really, no. He was a crotchety old bastard at the best of times. He often yelled at his wife. I didn’t like visiting him,” Remedy said with a shake of her head. “He had a very painful medical condition. It basically crippled him... He had to be constantly cared for.”
“That... Is not a very happy story,” Celestia stated.
“Oh, my grandmother gave as good as she got,” Remedy said with a faint smile. “They had a kind of... rapport, I guess? I think they took their problems out on eachother so that no other pony had to put up with them.”
“Indeed?” Celestia asked, frowning slightly. “Continue.”
“Well... One day, my grandmother got really sick, and ended up in hospital. I had to look after my grandfather while she was in hospital. My mother and father stopped by occasionally, but they were both really busy with their jobs. Anyhow, my grandfather got really drunk. He was really quiet for most of the time, until after he got really drunk. And then he just got... Kinda pensive or something. Started talking about the old days, before his condition.”
Celestia nodded gently, imploring her to continue her story further.
“Well... I didn’t really understand the two of them at the time, so I asked him why he hated my grandmother so much. Of course, he didn’t take the question very well. Told me that he didn’t hate her at all, and that he loved her more than anything he had ever had before. And that he didn’t deserve her. That he was pulling her life into the gutter by forcing her to care for his frail body. Told me that he would have killed himself a long, long time ago if he had the courage.” Remedy shook her head, sighing faintly. “And then he went quiet for a really long time, and I didn’t know what to say. And after a little while, he told me ‘What your grandmother is doing is the very best thing a pony can ever do for another pony. Caring for them when they can no longer care for themselves. That is the ultimate act of selflessness, and you should learn from that’. And so... that’s why I’m a nurse.”
Celestia nodded, looking down at the element. It remained stony and grey.
“Now... Was there anything else?” Remedy asked, placing the element back on the table on its stand, shaking her head.
“I... Do not know,” Celestia said, confused.
Remedy shook her head again, and then turned to leave.
“A second, Remedy... What is true kindness to you?” Celestia enquired, raising a brow at the earth pony.
Remedy paused in the doorway, a frown crossing her features, her tail giving an errant flick as she sighed softly, and then began to explain.
“I guess that true kindness is... Giving something of yourself without asking for anything in return. Even if it hurts you to do it. True kindness is just... Helping ponies. Even if they don’t know it’s help. Like if I have to hurt somepony by rebreaking their leg so it’ll set properly later on. If they didn’t know what I was doing, they would see me only as somepony who hurt them, somepony who injured them and caused them pain. That’s what kindness is to me. Just... Doing the right thing for somepony other than yourself, even if it hurts you as a pony to do it, and makes people hate you,” Remedy said, before her cheeks flushed hotly and she shook her head. “I sound stupid.”
Celestia shook her head gently. “Not at all, Remedy. Your view of kindness is quite noble. And look.”
The princess raised a hoof, pointing at the Element of Kindess, which now say, glowing and amber.
Remedy blinked, looking back at it, her ears pinning down against her skull. “...I did that?”
Celestia nodded gently. “You are the bearer of the Element of Kindness, whether you wish the title or not.”
“Kinda railroaded into it, huh?” Remedy asked with a sardonic smile.
“Indeed,” Celestia said with a nod. “Come, you should meet the other bearers.”
Remedy nodded gently, and then turned around, heading back over to the table, and then lifting a hoof to tentatively reach for the Element of Kindness. “M-may I touch it?”
Celestia nodded gently, smiling and motioning for Remedy to touch it. “Feel free. After all, you are its bearer now.”