You knock on the door to the cottage. Brushing up your mane and straightening your saddlebag one more time so you look your best. It didn't take long for Fluttershy to open the door. Already greeting you with a friendly and warming smile the moment she sees you. "Welcome back Anon, did you have fun with your friends?"
You nod. "Yeah, I had a good time. We did this and that...stuff"
Fluttershy steps aside so you can come in. "That's good. I actually thought you'd come back a little later though. I hope you didn't feel like you had to leave your friends early just to come spend time with me"
D'awww, she really does care. "No it's fine. We got done what needed to be done....fun and all. So, what're you up to?"
"Oh, well I just finished putting out food for everypony. So I thought I'd sit on my sofa and read a book until you got here." She then giggled "Looks like I had less time then I thought I did. But that's ok" She gently puts a hoof on your head and gives you a gentle rub "I'd like to be able to spend some more time with you anyway."
Awww...that both warmed and hurt your heart. It always did. But at this point, the truth would only crush her. "Thanks aunt Fluttershy, I really like spending time with you too. Dad is cool and all, but he's high energy sometimes. Really takes it out of me with all the fun we have. Sometimes it's just good to have a nice lazy day."
"Those kinds of days are nice. A day where nothing bad happens. You can relax all day and not worry about a scary monster or big bad guy showing up and ruining everypony's life. Those kinds of days are my favorite. Right next to days where I can spend time with my friends. Ohhh! Speaking of which. How did your first Nightmare Night go? I know what you and your father was up to. But You also got to spend time with your friends, right?"
You plop your butt to the ground before answering. You had a feeling some sort of conversation was gonna start.....man, did it feel comfy to be able to just plop your butt down everywhere and it feel natural. Is this how dogs feel when they do it? "Yeah, we went to houses and got some candy. And played this ball tossing game over at the town's square. And that's about it really. But still, it was a lot of fun. And look at all the candy I got to keep!"
You open your saddle bag to show off the candy bag. Yeah she's already seen it. But you wanted her to have some. Since It was of high quality. You take a few wrapped candies out of the bag and slide it towards her. It felt odd sliding it on the ground sometimes. But these were ponies. Where flower sandwiches exist and they eat with their faces.
"Oh no no Anon" Fluttershy slides it back to you "It's yours, you don't need to give me any."
You slide it back. "Come on Aunt Fluttershy, it's pretty good" You thought anyway, again. Assumptions. But you really did want her to have it.
She slides it back "It's fine, really. You deserve all that candy. It was your first Nightmare Night after all."
..Mnnn. You slide it back, and give her a soft but stern look. "Come on. I got a lot more of this in the bag. It's high quality candy. And I want to share, isn't sharing a good thing?"
Fluttershy grimaced. She felt really bad. She didn't want to take the candy, but she didn't want you to get the wrong impression about sharing either. "O-oh...well. If you really want me to..." She takes it, opens up the wrapping to reveal a chocolate, and pops it into her mouth.
You could see her pupils shrink a little as she slowly chews on the chocolate. "...oh my....this is incredible."
Huh....it must be better than you thought. You had to make a mental note of trying some for yourself when you actually were in the mood for chocolate. For now, you were happy she was enjoying it.
"Thank you Anon, that was delicious. But...where in Equestria did you get this kind of chocolate? We don't sell anything like that here in Ponyville"
You shrug. "My friends and I won it in a ball toss game. Through friendship and teamwork we managed to win the grand prize. Which was this candy. Cool huh?"
"Mhmm! It sounds like you may have learned a lesson or two on friendship. I can't imagine this candy being easy to get without teamwork."
"Yeah...sure. Yup" ...if only she knew. Or..probably better she didn't. "So....how did your Nightmare Night go? Did anypony spoooooky visit the cottage?"
Fluttershy giggles at that, taking it as a joke "No...actually, I did have quite the night myself. It was fun, but...it hurt seeing all my friends so scared." She frowns a little.
Scared? Oh shit...did something episode worthy happen? Did Fluttershy face her fears against some ghoul?! "Woah wait. What happened? Did some crazy monster attack you all or something?"
Fluttershy shook her head "No, nothing like that. Well, actually. If you consider my animal friends dressed up as scary monsters. Then I guess that counts."
Wut? "What do you mean?"
"Well, Twilight and the others really wanted me to enjoy Nightmare Night. So, I tried actually scaring them. But....nothing worked. But Angel had an idea where we all dress up and scare them where they nearly had to go to the bathroom. I even dressed up as a vampire fruit bat. It worked....mnnn...a little too well actually" She started to feel a little bad for what she did, turning her head and rubbing her leg with the other nervously.
"Woah....that's actually really cool. I wish I could have seen it myself. Probably would have been pretty funny"
Fluttershy frowns even more "...It wasn't too funny...I only wanted to scare them a little."
Hmm, it seemed she didn't like the thought of scaring them. Or scaring them to the degree she apparently managed. Fucking Christ. Did she make them piss themselves? "Aww, come on Aunt Flutttershy. It was just a one time thing. I bet in a couple more days you and everypony else could look back on it and have a good laugh. I'm sure they think you we're really really cool managing to scare them the way you did...however you did it."
That cheered Fluttershy up a little. But she still looked a little nervous about it "Maybe....it was kind of a little funny to see Spike get scared when I bit his head off"
WHAT?! "Y-you did what?"
"I bit his head off, he had a two headed dragon costume. So I thought it'd be reeeaaaallllyyy scary if I swooped in and took one off. He reacted like he really did lose his head."
...Ohhh...wooo. That explains it. You almost thought she had started to go back to a personality that matched her fruitbat side. "Oh...haha. That's pretty funny actually. Aww, Aunt Fluttershy. You shouldn't worry about it. Like I said, you'll all be laughing about it later"
Fluttershy nods, feeling a little more confident from your words "You're probably right. I guess I got a little worried that they would have held it against me."
"Nah, you're the Elements of Harmony. Like, the tightest bunch of friends I've ever seen ever. You guys always band together and find the good and funny in things. Well...Pinkie does at least"
"...Awww" Fluttershy moves up to you and gives you a little hug "You're very sweet Anon, actually...do you want to know a secret?"
Oooooohhhhhhh a secret. You nod. "Sure...but what is it?"
She whispers in your ears. "I bet your father would make a lot more friends if he was like you"
Hmm, she was probably wrong about that too. Well, not wrong if things went by her perception. OR...maybe she was right. You've managed to make friends and keep them. Not everything was a lie. And at least your feelings were true. Mnnn...Or maybe ponies were reeaaallllyyy trusting. "oh, well. um...I mean I guess"
Fluttershy smiles and gives you another head rub "You don't need to be modest around me Anon, I am your aunt after all...Ohhh! Do you want a laugh?"
A laugh? Huh...wonder what she means by that? A joke maybe? "Sure, I didn't know you told jokes though"
"Oh..I don't, but, since you mentioned looking back and having a laugh about my Nightmare Night. I thought you'd find it funny if you saw one of the ways I tried to scare them before Angel helped me" Fluttershy went through a drawer where her lamp sat. And pulled out some paper cut outs. "Now don't laugh too much, but..." Fluttershy stifles a giggle "Don't you think it's a little funny I tried to scare them by saying we had these as "uninvited guests". Looking at them now, they don't look the least bit threatening. They even look cute" She holds them up.
You take a step closer to get a good l-....hollyy shit.. HOLLLLYYY SHIT!.. Nooooooooooooo.
Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooo. These were anime characters...as ponies.
You gently pluck one from her hoof and take a look. "Bulma?"
"Hmmm?" Fluttershy found your response rather odd "is that slang for good?...or.." Her ears droop a little "..bad?"
She noticed your astonished look. She expected you to laugh. She hoped they weren't too bad.
"U-um...nothing...l-let me see the others..hmm..."
"....." Utena,Sailor Moon, Rei, and Ranma too. There's....no...fucking...way.
"A-Anon...A-are you alright?" Fluttershy was now really worried.
"....y-yeah...umm..These are..." You shift your eyes towards her, she looked....really worried. You were going to have to do your best to relax. B-but..still. This was.....way to strange.
Wait, maybe it's Discord fucking with you. She didn't make these. haha, you feel relief wash over you already. "These are pretty cool, but. are you sure these are yours?" You hold up the cutouts back to her, expecting her not to recognize them.
But unexpectedly, she nods. "Yeah, I definitely made them. Ohhh! I get it!" She smiles "You're joking with me making it seem I'm uncool, but if you found those cool, then you actually mean I'm cool too right?"
...Good god...she actually made them. "Y-yeah, s-sure...ummm..yup..." You didn't know what to say. This was fucking insane. The best you could do is try not to upset her. But goddammit, you had to get to the bottom of this.
Fluttershy felt really good about herself as she grinned happily "Yay! I think I'm actually understanding how foals think. Before you know it, I'll be able to understand and share all the cool things you like to do. Doesn't that sound great? Aunt and Nephew! On a new level of understanding one another. Just the thought of it makes me so happy."
...There was something about Fluttershy that was just...calming. Even with your tension being high due to trying to figure out how these cut outs came to be. Her just genuinely wanting to be part of your life was heart warming. And made you not care as much about the situation.
"Yeah, you got it exactly right Aunt Fluttershy. You're really really cool. The coolest Aunt anypony could ever have"
"Really?...Do you really think that Anon?" Fluttershy felt so great about herself, she never thought she was cool. And would normally feel like she wasn't no matter how many times she was told. But she assumed you were probably pretty "cool". And if you thought she was "cool", it must be true.
"Mhmm. I do. I'm pretty lucky to have you as an Aunt"
And now....Fluttershy thought you were being a tad TOO generous. "...oh Anon...I don't know. I've never even really taken care of foals before. I babysat your friends once...but...I didn't do too good a job."
"Pfft, everypony has a screw up once in awhile. But that's balanced out that you saved Equestria a bunch of times. You've even managed to tame one of the biggest baddies Equestria has ever had! Twilight may be a princess, but she can never say she tamed a god." If that didn't instill self confidence in her. Nothing would....still, you wanted to shift the topic as soon as possible to ask more about the cutouts.
Fluttershy blushed from embarrassment. She was being modest to be sure. "I...guess that's pretty cool. Well...." Fluttershy smiles and sighs "If you really think I'm cool because of things like that. Then I believe you. Actually..." She looked upwards, in wonderment, then giggled "I guess when Rainbow Dash was telling me I could be pretty cool, she wasn't joking. Hmmm..."
Fluttershy looks back towards you. "Thank you Anon, this actually makes me feel really good about myself. I kind of had a fear that sometimes I embarrass my friends in public. Or...worse. I know a lot of ponies had been giving me weird eyes whenever I'm spending time with Discord. But...they don't do that much anymore. And I'm really happy about that"
.....D'aaawwwww. "It's no problem. I'm really glad things have been getting better. And you know what? they should have a lot sooner. You're the element of kindness. You'd never ever do anything hurtful to anypony."
"I try not to, Nopony deserves to be hurt"
"And that's what makes you great too. if there’s a way to solve a problem without violence. You're the mare for the job."
"Well, I do hate violence. So I always try to find the most peaceful solution. Wait..." Fluttershy smirks at you "are you trying to butter me up for something, Anon?"
"Oh don't be coy" Fluttershy giggles, and once again gives you a gentle pat "You don't need to be so obvious. You can just ask"
Then Fluttershy realized you were genuinely over praising her. "Erm...nothing. But you don't need to praise me that much. I'm not that great. So let's uhh....uhmm.." Fluttershy looks around. Wanting to change the subject as she felt uncomfortable to such praise. "mmnnnn....How about...we play a game?"
A game? Well...that suddenly seemed out of the blue. But looking at her expressions. It seems you may have overdone it with the positive reinforcement. You actually felt a little dumb yourself praising her so much. But, she seemed pretty happy about feeling "cool". You just wanted her to feel like she really was. "Er, ok. But can I ask one more question?"
She nods "Ok"
"Have you ever heard of anime?"
Fluttershy had never heard that word before, it confused her greatly "An-eee-may? Oh, um...is that something the foals are into nowadays? I've never heard of it."
Ok, so you've deduced she's never heard of anime before. So it's safe to say it doesn't exist at all in Equestria. So, it all goes back to Discord's theory. Christ, you don't even want to imagine how the idea for those cutouts got into her head.
"Oh no, it's just something my Dad mentioned once about another dimension. It sounded a little interesting and I thought it's something you may have heard about. But since you haven't, let's get to that game."
"Oh, ok..... Well I have a few. I even borrowed one of Rainbow Dash's favorites. It's right up here." Fluttershy floats upwards and grabs the battleship like cloud game and brings it down.
You look at the box while she sets it down. Yeah, it definitely was the game from the episode " Read it and Weep.". Eh, you were never much for battleship. "Oh, that's cool. What other board games do you have Aunt Fluttershy?"
Playing board games actually didn't sound too bad anyway. It's nice, relaxing, and a good way to unwind after the day you had. It just had to be the right one.
"I've got Apple Bucket and Questionnaire Chase. Would you rather play one of those instead?"
"What are they exactly?"
"Well Apple Bucket is a game where you roll a die, and then fill the bucket up with the same amount of apples as it says on the die. First to fill their bucket wins. It's a very simple game so nopony ever argues about the rules."
Wow...that sounded a little...too boring. "And the other one?"
"Oh, I like to play this with my friends sometimes. You basically move across a board with a die and answer questions based on the color space you land on. I do really good when it's a question about animals or wildlife. But, I don't get a chance to play it much anymore since Twilight usually wins anyway and nopony wants to play due to that"
So basically Equestria's Trivial Pursuit. Actually...that didn't sound to bad. If anything, you could put your mind to the test to see how much of Equestria you actually knew about from your time spent here and from what the show gave you. "Let's play that one"
"Are you sure? Some of the questions are really really tough." Fluttershy warns
"Hey, I'm pretty smart remember? If anything, this game will let me test how much I actually know."
"Ok then, I'll get the board set up. Would you like anything to eat, or perhaps a snack before we play?"
That sounded pretty good too. So you nod. "Yes please, I am pretty thirsty."
Fluttershy nods and fetches you and herself some water and a bowl of crunched up flowers. She sets them down by the game box and starts to set up the game. "So Anon, while I set things up.Let me ask you another question."
"Ok, well. It's about your future actually. Is there anything you'd like to be when you grow up?"
....fuck. "Erm, I never gave it much thought. Don't you usually take a job that your cutie mark represents?"
"Not exactly, a cutie mark represents your special talent. But it doesn't make it your job. There are plenty of ponies that have jobs that utilize their talents but doesn't center around it. Like, for example, Rainbow Dash. She does a LOT of different things and jobs that utilize her special talent, but it isn't just one thing." Fluttershy stops setting up the board to give you a reassuring smile "So if you thought you had to grow up causing chaos, you'd be wrong. But maybe you could find a job where chaos can be used for good things."
"Chaos used for good hmm? hmmm....Oh!" You got one. "Like demolitions?"
Fluttershy nodded "That's not a bad job. It's mostly done in the city. But I suppose blowing up old buildings or obstructions on train tracks is a form of chaos. Nice thinking Anon. See? It didn't take you long at all to think of something. Good job"
Demolitions, huh? It was a thought that came to you. But not a job you really wanted to do. Not as an earth pony who may have to actually handle dynamite. Unless you could use the horn at anytime, It wasn't your kind of job, even if it sounded pretty badass.
Fluttershy set up the game, shuffled the question cards, and her and you picked the playing pawns you would move. And the game was on.
And what a game it turned out to be. It lasted a good while. And you managed to get halfway across the board. But it just wasn't enough. There was too many questions about shit you never even heard of. Or events that were never covered in the show. Fluttershy, unbeknownst to you, she was even purposely answering questions she'd get wrong to try to let you catch up. But it was no use. She still slaughters you. She was a little baffled that you didn't get further. Considering how smart you seemed.
And what's worse. You felt like you could have done better if you had gotten more show related questions. Dammit, fucking dammit. You thought you could do better than half, hell. You thought maybe you could even win.
You don't really say anything. You just sigh, and fake a smile at Fluttershy. "Good job Aunt Fluttershy, I guess I'm not as smart as I thought."
"Oh..Don't say that Anon. You got halfway, that's still pretty good. In fact, we we're playing the adult version. So you still got further than most foals your age."
Most...but not all. "I guess so.. But, whatever. It's just a game. I'm still smart." You say, more to convince yourself than anyone else. You started to notice something about yourself. You noticed you we're a little more emotional and brash than you used to be. But you couldn't pinpoint why. Whatever the case, you we're definitely miffed about losing. You just did your best to hide it.
"I think so. You were probably just off your game." Fluttershy puts away the game. Internally, she was worried about you. She sensed that you weren't fully alright. Almost like an instinctual tip off. Maybe if she… "Anon, it's gotten pretty dark out and we haven't even had dinner. So, I was thinking. How about a special something to go with dinner?"
You tapped the box to the game a few times, looking at it. You kind of wanted to look at the cards and see exactly how good or bad you really are. You were paying attention, but damn. You just wanted to know. "Something special?"
"Mhmmm, I was thinking of a shake! I can make a delicious banana or chocolate or even an oat shake if you want. I don't have any strawberries at the moment though. But you don't mind, do you?"
A shake? that...doesn't sound too bad. Still. "Sure....but erm. While you make dinner, do you mind if I take a look at a few of these cards?"
"Go right ahead, I don't mind. I know you won't lose any of them. So, what kind of shake do you want?"
"Can I get a banana shake? And some whipped cream on top please?" Fuck, you never even asked Discord for a delicious shake before. Now you were glad you didn't. You bet a homemade shake made by yellowhorse was much better than something Discord could conjure up. Even if his would be more healthy.
It even put you in a slightly better mood knowing you were going to get a tasty treat. And as Fluttershy went to work on dinner. You opened up the game board. And started inspecting the cards.