Fluttershy again sat on the bench by the soccer field, wondering if doing so was a good idea. Still, she'd stick to her routine for today, and that started with the day's feel-a-little-better treat; candy corn! Some people hated it, she knew, the taste, the texture, maybe even the color just not sitting right with them, but to her, they were always a little part of what made Halloween special. Not that it was anywhere close to Halloween, but she'd gotten a little bag of candy corn just the same.
It was just as she'd placed the first little triangular treat on her tongue that Fluttershy nearly choked on it out of fright.
"Morning, Sweetie." Adagio was leaning over the back of the bench again. Seeing the bag of tri-colored triangles, Adagio raised an eyebrow. "I find you eating the strangest things... Do you go for the mystery meals in the cafeteria?"
"Uhm, n-no," she mumbled, composing herself as best she could, "the salad bar is usually enough for me." She smiled a little, holding the bag where Adagio could see. "W-would you, um, i-if you'd like to-"
Adagio held up a hand, eyeing the little orange things with distrust. "That's alright, I, uh... had a... big breakfast?"
Fluttershy just smiled, tilting her head a little and staring at Adagio with those soft, blue eyes. "Are you sure? They're not very filling, candy usually isn't, and, it's, um..." In the face of Adagio's doubting stare, her resolve wavered, the smile fading, her shoulders starting to fall, and her head unconsciously retreating behind her hair. "I-I mean, unless you really don't want to, that's okay too."
Adagio felt something tingling in the back of her head. This was perhaps her least favorite reaction out of Fluttershy thus-far, but she (fondly) remembered the difference taking her offer last time made and opted to try for a similar outcome.
Those things look weird, but...
She cleared her throat, her expression neutral. "Wellll, I've been trying new things more and more lately... How are they?"
A few couldn't hurt, right?
Looking up, the smile made a hesitant comeback. "They're sweet and sugary, with a unique sort of flavor." She looked away for a split second. "B-but, I should probably warn you, some people think it tastes really... strange."
Taking a few pieces of candy corn out of the bag, she eyed them curiously. "They look almost like tiny traffic cones..." She popped them into her mouth, chewing slowly. "Hm... It is a little strange." Once more, she had that analytical look Fluttershy was growing to like. "Waxy, almost syrupy as it melts... I can't quite place the flavor... It's almost tangy, like an orange. Citrus? Hard to tell, but it is, as you said, sweet." She grinned. "I think I like it."
Fluttershy smiled a little. "You're one of very few there, I think."
"Hah, more for me, then!" She leaned in close, her mouth lightly opened. "Unless you'd like to...?"
Just as Adagio had hoped, Fluttershy flushed brightly at the suggestion coupled with their facial proximity. This definitely beat that other reaction, but it looked like she was having trouble maintaining eye-contact.
"Y-you should, uhm, b-be careful, doing... th-that... You might get sick!"
Smirking, Adagio raised an eyebrow. "You're worried about infections? I've had all my shots, Sweetie, and I'm sure you have too. If not, I'd be happy to administer them to you." Her voice dropped to a husky whisper. "If you like, I'll even wear a nurse outfit..."
"Eep!!" She blushed even brighter, fidgeting where she sat and looking down. "Th-that, really n-n-nec-not necessary, I-I, uhm-"
"Are you sure? If you're good," she leaned in very close, grinning deviously, "you might even get a lollipop."
Fluttershy was nearly glowing as she visibly started to sweat.
"Besides," she continued with a relaxed grin, "the three of us, Aria, Sonata, and I, would directly share negative energy all the time, back when we still could. Why is a faux pas with any other kind of food?"
Fluttershy dared look up just a little. "D-did negative energy have bacteria in it?"
Adagio blinked once, her eyes widening in realization. "Oh." It was faint, but Fluttershy could have sworn her cheeks colored just a little. "Ohhh. Yes, I think I see the problem..." She shrugged a little. "Still, I stand by what I said earlier, provided neither of us are currently carrying anything worse than a cold, I don't think there's much to worry about."
Fluttershy nodded a little. It wasn't that she wasn't at least a little worried about either of them getting sick if they... kept... doing that... But, she wasn't too worried. For medical reasons.
"Anyway," Adagio said with her usual mischievous grin, "thanks for the sugar triangles,"
"Right. If you ever feel like sharing again, I'll be around..." She pushed off the bench and turned to walk away in the direction she came, behind Fluttershy.
Slowly turning to watch her go, she saw that Adagio was already gone.
That's odd. Where could she have-
"When you least expect it!"
The statement loud-whispered directly into her ear from the opposite side of the bench Adagio had been standing on, Fluttershy nearly jumped out of her skin, followed by the sound of familiar, maniacal laughter. Albeit not directly into her ear.
Having had the weekend to consider her plan of action in regard to the newest complication to her life, Fluttershy opted for staying out of sight. She carefully crept around the school building. It was still early enough in the morning that there were shadows, but she'd be kidding herself if she thought she'd stay hidden for long with her usual white shirt and pink hair. That was fine, though, she just needed to find a spot where
Adagio anyone couldn't easily sneak up on her.
Slowly pacing along the wall by the parking lot, she decided against that area. There were plenty of spaces to hide between, or even under, cars, but no matter what, she'd be on very uncomfortable pavement. Moving on to the alcoves of the building that led into the gym, she determined that while the area was well-shaded and didn't have a lot of entry points, she ran the risk of one of the athletes going in for an early-morning warm-up, or coming out after, all big, and sweaty, and-
She quickly jogged around the corner, bumping into someone that barely budged with the impact as Fluttershy fell backward. "Ow." Gingerly rubbing her rear, she looked up at the person she collided with. "S-sorry, I was ju-EEP!!"
Adagio regarded her curiously before donning her usual smirk. "What's wrong, Sweetie? You look like you're afraid something will get you."
Still sitting on the ground, she lowered her head. "W-what are you doing here?"
Resting a hand on one hip, she tilted her head a little. "I, a student, walking around a school shortly before school is due to begin? Yes, whatever could I have in mind?"
"Y-you don't really pay attention in class, though..."
Adagio didn't respond to that comment. "So why are you on a different side of the school than usual?" Her voice filled with mock-hurt. "You weren't trying to avoid me or anything, were you?"
Fluttershy nearly curled into a ball. "N-no! I-I, th-that wasn't-"
All but looming over her, Adagio leered at Fluttershy. "Oh, I see. Well, I wouldn't want you make you uncomfortable, so I'll just be on my way." She took two steps forward, leaning down to whisper into Fluttershy's ear. "See you again soon, Sweetie."
As the Dazzling leader walked away cackling, Fluttershy wasn't sure if it was the laugh, the fact that Adagio definitely didn't mind making her uncomfortable, or the implication that she intended to do it again in the very near-future that sent shivers up her spine.
Having spent the entire rest of the previous day anticipating Adagio suddenly surprising her, Fluttershy all but kicked herself for not realizing until she got home that that was exactly what Adagio was probably hoping she'd do. Adagio hadn't come near her again the whole day. This morning, she'd find somewhere quiet and secluded and hopefully be able to go there from now on without incident.
She really wasn't trying to avoid Adagio, or anyone else, it was just the possibility of someone sneaking up on her that made her nervous. More-so than usual. Resting on her legs at the base of the statue in front of the building, where the stone was much smoother than the parking lot's blacktop, Fluttershy kept an eye out for any hint of orange, rapidly looking back and forth, scanning the area from every angle so as to minimize the chance that-
"EEEK!!" Holding a hand to her chest in the vain effort of trying to slow her thumping heart, Fluttershy looked up to see Adagio lying on her stomach atop the pedestal of the statue behind her, staring down at her, that evil grin of delight pointed her way.
Fluttershy hid behind her hair as best she could. "Uhm, n-not exactly..."
"Well, then you probably shouldn't sit on hard pavement. Unless you just like it hard?"
Her face caught fire and her throat had locked shut. She couldn't even squeak.
Adagio chuckled with sadistic glee. "Well, I'll just leave you to your... preferences. Don't hurt yourself, Sweetie." She slowly sank back on the pedestal until she entirely faded from sight.
Still blushing furiously, Fluttershy crawled on her hands and knees around the edge of the statue.
Adagio must have climbed up there from the other side, which means she'll have to-
Getting to the opposite side of the one she'd been on, there was no sign of Adagio anywhere.
Huh? Where did she go? Could she have run off already? I didn't hear-
Fluttershy jumped, whirling around to see Adagio looking down at her with a mildly bemused grin.
"Going for a walk now, are you? You're getting more interesting by the day, Sweetie..."
Suddenly feeling very self-conscious, it occurred to Fluttershy just how crawling around like this, bare hands and knees on the hard concrete, might look from the right mindset. She hopped up, brushing off the dust as best she could. "I-I wasn't, th-this isn't-"
Adagio held up a hand, only smirking a little. "I'm not judging, really, but doing that kind of thing in public, knowing more people will be here soon? I never would have guessed you of all people were a masochistic exhibiti-"
"Alright, alright," Adagio said as placatingly as one could while giggling, "I believe you. Just wanted to make sure this wasn't a side-effect of my company." She held her fingertips to her chest in melodramatic fashion, which Fluttershy had to remind herself to look at for only two seconds. "I'd hate to be expelled for being a bad influence on the students, you know?" She closed her eyes and struck a much more provocative pose, one leg out to the side, hips cocked, arms up over her head, fingers folded and palms outward as she stretched, exhaling in a gentle groan. "I can't help being too much for some people, it's just-"
Fluttershy had already turned on a heel and sprinted away. It was a good thing she didn't wear glasses, because she'd definitely trip over something if they got all fogged up.