Super Secret Special Skills

by Nugar

Super Secret Special Skills

“I think I see the problem,” Twilight muttered as she eyed a brass gear in her hoof critically. Several more pieces, including two projector reels and the bulb, as well as a large number of screws, bolts, and nuts, were held aloft by her magic in the order she’d removed them. “Looks like the spindle on the drive gear is stripped. It’ll either have to be replaced or fixed by someone with a torch.” She held up half the magilectric motor in the other hoof and sniffed . “On the other hoof, I think I can krazyglue a sapphire or a ruby into the frictionless primordial plasma generator, if Rarity will let me have one. Brass shavings got into it and the frictionless plasma got a little too much… friction. Just the conducting gem was cracked, though. If it’d let the magic purple smoke out, we’d have had to replace it, too.”

“Aww, I wanted to see those home movies of yours,” Pinkie said, disappointed.

“Hey, Twilight!” Rainbow Dash called, grinning mischievously. “Think fast!” and she underhoofed a cupcake at her nerdy friend’s face.

With her magic currently occupied keeping a number of separate objects afloat and both hooves full, Dash confidently expected her cupcake to splat in Twilight’s face. However, Twilight quickly chucked the magilectric motor housing into the air and caught the cupcake, getting only a little frosting on her hoof. Her other hoof tossed the brass gear into the air along a slightly different trajectory, then caught the falling motor piece. With a moment’s warning an no preparation, the purple unicorn juggled the three objects briefly before shoving the cupcake into her mouth and catching the parts safely.

Dash just gaped.

“…Wow, Twi, I didn’t know you could juggle,” Applejack said, impressed.

Twilight shrugged, determinedly chewing through the huge mouthful while she directed parts into bags and began labeling them. “It’s no big deal, really,” she said once she’d swallowed.

“And here I thought I was the only juggler around here! Well, Mr. Cake says he juggles the demands of baking and paying bills and raising kids and dealing with me but he’s just a silly pony. Why, when he told me that I tossed a half dozen eggs to him and he just let them splatter all over the floor and just said that it proved his point.”

“Oh, Twilight,” Rarity said with some concern. “It’s okay to take pride in your skills. Just because you’re better at magic than Trixie, and a better friend, and better at her than… basically everything really, doesn’t mean we’re going to accuse you of being a showoff. Be proud!”

“What?” Twilight asked, confused. “No, this has nothing to do with pride. It’s just one of those things. My brother taught me when I was little. I’m not very good, I mean, not really. It’s definitely not my special talent.” She stared back at them. “Oh, come on, really? Everyone has little things they’re can do that you might not think they could but they don’t think is a big enough deal to mention. I watched Fluttershy use a fourth dan river floods the forest move to take down a bear once, and she’s never even mentioned taking hoof to hoof self defense.”

They all turned to stare at Fluttershy, who nervously put her hoof up. “Um, that was actually a shiatsu pressure point massage technique.”

Rarity arched one delicate eyebrow.

Fluttershy looked down and mumbled, her ears going flat against her head. “At least, that’s what I thought it was when I signed up for the course.” She blushed. “And I’m only second dan,” she squeaked.

“You should challenge for the next rank,” Twilight assured her. “But I’m just saying. Everypony has some little thing they can do that you wouldn’t expect.”

“Well shoot, I guess she’s right,” Applejack admitted. “I make a pretty mean pear crumble, if I do say so myself. Don’t have a call to use it much, though. Apples are just plain better.”

“Well that’s nothing,” Dash bragged. “I can read, and I even do it sometimes when I’m bored.”

“We already knew that, Dash,” Twilight replied, giving her friend an odd look.

Dash nodded. “Yeah, you know that now, I mean, but would you have ever guessed before you found out?”

With a little surprised mumbling, the ponies admitted she had a point.

“Well, I’m a little ashamed to admit it,” Rarity began, tossing her hair dramatically, “but when I was a filly still looking for my cutie mark, I tried to learn a few instruments and developed a passing familiarity with the alto sax.”

“You play the sax?” Twilight asked.

Rarity nodded.

“But.. I don’t get it. Why would you be ashamed of that?” Applejack asked, squinting slightly at her.

“It was the alto sax. Puh-lease. Everyone knows that the only sax players worth remembering play tenor or bass. I would even have kept at it if we’d had a soprano sax available. But nooo, all the shop had was an alto.” She shuddered, her delicate sensibilities offended.

“Lots of famous sax players played the alto!” Twilight exclaimed, shocked.

Rarity sniffed. “Yes, but they all played a good sax, too.”

None of them really knew how to take this insight into their white coated friend’s biases.

“Ooooh, me next, me next!” Pinkie said, nearly vibrating in excitement.

Deciding to play along, Rarity said, “Okay, Pinkie, so whats your-“

“WAITRIGHTHEREI’LLBERIGHTBACK-okay I’m back!” she chirped cheerfully, displaying four brightly painted wooden horseshoes which clopped noisily on the library floor.

“So what-“

“Justwatch!” And with no buildup or lead in music whatsoever, Pinkie burst into a highly animated clog dance, clop clopping up a storm all around her friends. This went on for a good solid minute before she slowed, burst into one final clop cloppity routine, and threw her forelegs wide. “Ta-daaa!”

Rarity tittered. “Well done, dear, but I’m afraid it’s not exactly something we never saw coming.”

“Yeah, Sugar, I kinda figured you probably knew all kinds of dances. Clog dancing doesn’t exactly shock me,” Applejack admitted.

“Totally,” Dash agreed. “I mean, you grew up on a rock farm. I would have guessed you knew clog dancing before you learned to conga.”

Pinkie sighed sadly at the news her super secret special skill wasn’t so surprising. After a few gentle pats on the back from her bestest friend Twilight, she brightened with a slightly naughty look on her face, and shuffled in place with a few loud wooden clops. “And what if I said my secret skill wasn’t clog dancing, but…” She clopped on the floor several more times. “…Clopping?”

Fluttershy hesitantly raised one hoof again from her quiet place to the side. “I um, I still kind of already thought you did that, too.”