57w, 3dPonies in the Real World
The sound of hoofsteps trotting down the stairs and all the way up to the couch resonated all throughout the peaceful library. The librarian, entrusted with the hundreds of books surrounding her, quietly made her way towards the sleeping human on the couch. Gently lowering her mouth to his head, she calmly whispered into his ear.
Enjoying the for once tranquil awakening, the human smiled before replying. "Yes Twilight?"
Clearing her throat, the mare answered. "GET UP!"
"Aahhh!" Grabbing his right ear as it rang, the human retorted, "What was that for?"
"Spike told me of how hard it was to wake you up yesterday so I figured that would be the best plan of action, and from the results, it worked."
I mumbled a few curses under my breath as I watched the librarian trot back upstairs. "Anyway, what's the time?"
Calling back, Twilight replied, "Five in the morning. You have half an hour to get breakfast before you start re-organising the shelves along the bottom floor," before rather innocently adding "I hope you know your ABC's."
How old does she think I am, four? Seizing the chance for a witty comeback, I spoke up. "I may have pancakes again today; the ones Spike made yesterday were soooo good that I had to taste them twice!" Ha! Try coming up with something better than that!
Dumbstruck by my childish reply, the unicorn stopped half-way up the stairs before recollecting herself. She shook her head in disappointment before carrying on with going up the stairs. I watched her every step, swaying her tail and swinging her rump as she climbed. Letting the images pass through my head a couple of times, I realized that now was neither the time nor place for such thoughts and headed to the kitchen to get breakfast.
Opening up the same cupboards as I did the last time I was searching for food, I noticed that a whole new batch of apples had been stowed away in the pantry. Taking a couple, along with raiding the fridge for milk, I had breakfast sorted in no time. Walking back into the main area of the library, I sat down where I had previously rested and surveyed the shelves before me. Taking a bite out of an apple, I thought to myself that what lay ahead of me was no easy feat and that it all had to be done by twelve. All of this because of them flowers...
Chowing down the apples in a matter of bites and chugging the milk, I set to work on my monumental task. There must have been at least 200 books per shelf, all waiting for me to organize them by name and by genre. Starting with the shelf closest the front door, I pulled the books from their place and set them on the ground. English and Equestrian were very much the same language, except that the letters themselves were reversed for the latter. Reading each word involved some sort of mental effort, but after the fifth or sixth book title every name and sentence I read felt as though I had been taught the language from birth.
A few shelves later, working in a clockwise pattern around the room, I had found myself gazing at the first in the series if the Daring Do novels. Picking up The Quest for the Sapphire Stone, I flicked through the pages having already had the story narrated to me by Rainbow Dash. I chuckled as I remembered the episode Read it and Weep, as it was one of my personal favourites. Placing the book on to the floor, I removed the next book in the series and started reading. Daring Do and the Griffon's Goblet was a good read, a good enough read for me to spend the next hour going through the entire series. Each book was better than the last up until I was interrupted by Spike.
"Hey, shouldn't you be organizing the shelves?"
"Um..." I looked up from my book and watched the young dragon. Standing with his arms crossed, he didn't look too pleased about my slacking off. "I should be organizing the shelves, but Daring Do came up. Ya know how a good book can make you lose track of time, right? Well..."
"Whatever," the purple dragon face-palmed, "Just get back to work soon. You need to be on the train by twelve."
"But it's only six-thirty." I protested, "I have ages."
Gesturing to the walls of the library, Spike spoke, "And you have all of this work to do. You're going to take at least four hours."
After adding up the hours, I came to the time of half past ten. That still gave me at least an hour and a half to goof off. Not wanting to argue with the reptilian any longer, I put the book down and got back to work.
My maths wasn't too far off, as I finished my work at quarter to eleven. Placing the final book on the shelf, I returned back to the adventure section and picked up the book from where I left off. Daring Do and the Alicorn's Shadow was the seventh book in the series, telling of how the heroine has stumbled upon the final battleground of Celestia and Nightmare Moon. To quote the book, “Some of the traces of the evil mare still lingered, emanating a dark aura and freezing time to an eternal twilight”. I don't want to give out too many spoilers as I was already on the last chapter.
Finishing the book, I had neatly burnt through my time up until eleven in the morning. Seeing as I had the rest of the day to read, I got up to leave the library. Leaving a note to tell the dragon and seemingly absent pony of my intentions, I left the building and made my way into town. Today was sunny, so I felt like spending it outside.
Having become accustomed to the dim yet elegant lighting of the library, sunlight lingered on the edge of my eyesight as everything eventually came into focus. Slipping behind the large oak of a building I fell into the familiar route of Ponyville's back-streets and alleyways. Being a small town I wasn't offered too much cover while navigating my way to the train station, but I was given just enough to stay out of sight. I passed various houses, occasionally glancing inside through open windows to see what I would find. Nothing interested me in the slightest, but I did spot a familiar young colt that I had encountered a few days ago.
He was sat down with what appeared to be a book. Engrossed into his literature, he didn't spot me poke my head through the small gap in the glass panels. With my head in his room I noticed that it was awfully bare, lacking in details expected in a young boy’s room. The first thing that caught my eye as I looked around to my right was the bookshelf. It was tall, taller than I was and it was completely filled. From what I could tell, the young colt was quite the avid reader. The next thing I noticed in his room was a nameplate above the door that read 'Stardust', surrounded by a few planets and stars.
So that’s your name then... I would have carried on probing my way around the colts’ room, but a clock on his wall told me that I was going to be late for my train if I didn’t get moving. Stepping back into the alleyways I navigated daily, I carried on towards the train station with the ticket in my hand and the destination on my mind.
Ponyville’s train station wasn’t the largest of platforms, harbouring three or four separate locomotives at a time. Being located on the far edge of the small town this was the first time I had actually been near it, rarely spotting it as I made my mind-map of the area. As I stepped closer and closer towards the station, the first thing I noticed was the lack of ponies. It seemed I was the only one there. Upon further inspection, I saw two royal guards standing outside the entrance. It looked as though they were waiting for somepony, or someone. They must be waiting for me. I’ve never had a royal escort before, this should be fun...
I stepped out into the open which caused the guards to spot me. The guard on the left called out my name and stood to attention until I answered.
“Who wants to know?”
“We’re here to escort you to the princess’s royal castle in Canterlot to discuss your presence in Equestria.”
The brief answer got me suspicious. ‘Discuss my presence’ lacked enough detail for me to properly trust the guard. “Is that all? I won’t move a single step until I’m given more information about this ‘meeting’ I have to go to.”
The guard to the right leaned over to his comrade before whispering something into his ear. The other guard let out an exasperated sigh before handing over what looked like ten bits.
“I’m sorry to inform you sir, but that’s all we have been told. All other information has been withheld until further notice.”
Still wary of the guardsponies, I walked with them through the station and up to the platform where the train was already waiting. Stepping on board, I had to duck through the doorway to fit inside. Taking the seat nearest the exit, I watched as the two ponies sat down and made a note of their inventory. Better be safe than sorry. Who knows what they could be up to... Normally, I would be very trusting of anypony I met, but the absence of everypony else had got me nervous. For all I knew, they could have been kidnapping me.
As the train lurched into life, I watched Ponyville shrink into the distance. The small town had disappeared over the horizon before I spoke up. “So why was the train station deserted?”
The guard, now down by ten bits, looked up from the table he was staring at and replied. “Princess Celestia had the area vacated as to not disturb the locals. She figured that an alien presence would cause an upset to Ponyville.”
Well, there’s no need to worry about that... I thought back to the monkey incident before replying. “Smart move. Who knows what could happen if news of a blood-thirsty, cold-hearted slayer of worlds got out?”
This time both the guards looked at me, wide-eyed and on edge at what I had just said. I burst out laughing before telling then that I was of no harm and it was a joke. They calmed down, but they were still agitated by what I had said. Every so often one of the guards looked in my direction to see if I was up to something, but I kept on looking out of the window and watched as Equestria rolled on by, taking in the scenery of the land. Something tells me that this is going to be a long trip...