• Published 29th Jul 2013
  • 970 Views, 29 Comments

Homefront - Pyramusandthisbe117



A soldier from the frontlines of the Equestrian Civil War returns home to uncertain peace

  • ...
7
 29
 970

Chapter 2

The walk back to Autumn’s apartment was rather, well, uneventful to say the least. I enjoyed it though, but more for the reason that I’d finally have an actual roof over my head that wasn’t the shelter, and that didn’t smell like sweat and vomit. She began to slow down her brisk pace.

“Well, here we are. Home sweet home.” My jaw dropped. Before me was the most amazing building I had ever seen. Shiny two-way glass windows, beautiful landscaping and modern architecture. What wasn’t there to love? “You never see an apartment before?”

I blankly looked at Autumn, “This is what you call an apartment?! This place is huge! It’s like a mansion! Like the royal palace! Like Celestia herself would live here! It’s beautiful!” I never thought I’d gush over a freakin’ apartment building. I heard her giggling. “What?”

“Heh. Sorry, I’ve never had anypony like my place that much before” Autumn said. “C’mon! I live on the 2nd floor. I’ll give you the official, one and only Autumn Nova patented tour!” She trotted up the steps quickly. “C’mon, Doc! What are ya waiting for?”

I stood there like an idiot, “I’m…I’m allowed to go in?” She looked at me with an amused look on her face.

“Of course, Doc,” she laughed. “Think I’d offer to help you and leave you?”

“I…I don’t know. Just, nopony’s done something like this for me before.” I lowered my head, ashamed to admit it.

“Oh. Well, then consider me your first!” Autumn said mischievously with a wink. “C’mon lets head on inside.” I obliged, feeling strange about the whole thing. Guess I just had to get used to the whole ‘some ponies are just plain nice’ concept. She held the door open as I sauntered on in. The sight was overwhelming.

Clean and gorgeous were the first two words that come to mind. “Tada!” she said, beaming with pride. “Over here is my living room, and right there is my kitchen.” She began to walk through the apartment. “And this here is the TV area and down the hall are the bedrooms.” I couldn’t help but stare out the living room window. It was a beautiful view of Canterlot, the palace sparkled in the distance. I stepped closer in wonder. “Beautiful, isn’t it?”

“What?” I snapped out of my reverie. Autumn stood next to me, looking out towards the Palace as well. “Oh, heh. Yeah, the view is amazing.” That among other things.

“Alright, you get set up in your bedroom, shower, whatever. I’ll be making some dinner if you wanna help out.”

“Sounds good, Sarge.” Autumn raised her eyebrow at me. “Sorry. I mean, Autumn.” I began to walk down the hallway. “Hey, which room is mine?”

“Second door on the right!” came the reply from the kitchen.

As I opened the door, the room revealed itself to be relatively normal by comparison to everything else I had seen today. Bed, closet, nightstand, chair and full bath. Simple, but quaint, I like it. My body itched with excitement looking at the shower. It had been a while since I’d experienced a hot shower, and I was sure I could use one.

I closed the door and giddily trotted over to the bathroom. I turned on the water and simply hopped in. I didn’t care if it was going to take a bit for the water to get warm. Hell, I wanted to experience the water’s increase in temperature. Fuckin’ weird, I know. But I’d be damned if I didn’t get a chance to know that feeling.

The shower steadily became warmer with time, and it was glorious to say the least. I must have stood in that shower for at least ten minutes just letting the water run over me before I actually started to clean myself.

●●●

After a bit, I got out of the shower feeling refreshed and happy. Never had a stupid shower felt that good. I threw on a towel and headed on over to the kitchen to see Autumn preparing some food. I tapped her hoof “Need some help there?”

Autumn whirled around brandishing a butterknife in her teeth at me. “Holy…Celestia, Doc. You scared the hell outta me!” She laughed and shakily tried to resume making a hay sandwich.

“Hey, Autumn? You okay?” I asked.

“Yeah, Doc. I’m fine. Just scared me is all” she said flatly, putting on what I could only imagine was supposed to be a smile but ended up looking more like a grimace. Yeah, bullshit everything was fine.

“Autumn…” I started.

She glared at me this time, “Doc. I’m fine! Just let it go, okay?!”

I could take a hint. And plus I didn’t want to get knifed in the face by a damned butterknife. Be one of those stupid deaths. I shrugged. “So you need some help.”

Autumn’s bubbliness returned, “Yeah! Think you could grab the plates? They’re right over there.” she chirped. I brought her the plates and set them down. Skillfully, she slid the sandwiches onto both plates. “The bigger one’s yours. I don’t eat too much anyways...”

I grabbed my respective plate and brought it to the table. She sat down opposite of me, backlight by the city lights. My thoughts turned back to when we were deployed and I saw her. Maybe it wasn’t my ‘deployment goggles.’ I mean, Celestia, she looked great. I felt my cheeks flush. Fuck. Nooooo no no no no. Don’t even go there, I thought to myself. Change of though, change of thought!

“So, Autumn. I gotta ask, how did you manage to land a place like this?” Phew, close one.

“Mrph!” she mumbled, trying to chew and swallow her food quickly to reply. “Mpph…Sorry” she said sputtering, hoof over her mouth. “Well to make a long story short, Doc. I got lucky. Managed to get a job in contracting for Trifecta Industries. Pays well.”

“Whoa, wait. You’re a PMC?” I asked, totally taken aback.

Autumn burst out laughing. “I’m sorry, Doc. Should’ve mentioned that they do other stuff outside of mercenary work. I work in their logistics division. Better hours, get to stay away from the front and isn’t going to destroy my body.” She sighed wistfully, her gaze drifting into the distance. “Miss the action though. Sometimes I kind of wonder if I made the right choice, going the ‘safe’ route. What about you, Doc? You miss the old days?”

I started playing with the few crumbs that remained on my plate. “I dunno. Sometimes, yeah. Miss the black and white of it all. Made my life simple, you know? Then there are times I’m glad I got out. The stupid bullshit they made you do during the downtime.” Autumn now looked at me with intent, as if waiting for a definitive answer. “But if I had to do it all again? Yeah. Hell yeah, I would.”

She nodded in agreement before grinning. “Yeah, thought you’d say something like that.” Slowly Autumn got up to put her plate away.

“Hey lemme get that for ya” I offered. Nabbing both her’s and mine and trotted to the sink.

“Thanks, Doc. Just leave the plates in the sink for tonight. We’ll clean ‘em tomorrow. I’m tired as fuck.” Autumn sluggishly strolled to her room.

“Rawger, Sarge. What time we drawin’ weapons at?” I asked. She turned and smiled at my stupid joke. Sweet.

“G’night, Doc.” She said before heading into her room and shutting the door.

“Night, Autumn.” I shut the light off in the kitchen and made my way back to my room. My own bed. This was going to be an awesome night of sleep.

●●●

I awoke with a start. Something was wrong, couldn’t pin down what the hell it was, but something was definitely wrong. I felt around for my rifle, before realizing that I was in Autumn’s apartment. What time was it? I fumbled in the darkness for the clock. Celestia, the display was bright. 0143 hours. So much for a full night of sleep. A muffled cry came through my door.

What the hell? I thought. I scrambled to my hooves, preparing for…well, the unknown I suppose. Cautiously I approached the door and opened it, scanning left and right. Nopony. I heard the cry again, louder this time. And it sounded like it was comin’ from…Autumn’s room? Naw that couldn’t be right. Why would she…oh shit!

I booked it into Autumn’s room, crashing through her door in the process. “Autumn?!” I cried with panic rising in my voice. Great, so stallion-like. That’s when I saw her curled up in the corner, shaking with fear.

“N...no! Stay back!” She whimpered. “Please!”

“Autumn? It’s me, Doc. I want you to look at me, okay?” I asked as calmly as I could. Better keep my distance, just in case. “Where are you now? Autumn?” I took one step forward.

“STAY BACK!” she screamed, inching closer to the knife on her nightstand. Wait…knife? Oh fuck, this was bad, really bad.

“Okay Autumn. I’ll stay back” I said, while keeping close tabs on where she was in location to the knife.

Her eyes began darting back and forth rapidly, looking at the shadows. “Yeah, you will…you fuckin’ NLR bastard!” She started to wring her hooves and gasped. “Fuck, it hurts! Oh Celestia!” Autumn collapsed in a writhing heap on the floor and began screaming again to my dismay. “DOC! DOOOOOOOC!” I took my chance and moved in quickly, pinning her hooves down to keep her from thrashing around and hurting herself.

“Autumn! It’s okay!” I shouted. “We’re in your apartment in downtown Canterlot!” I saw her eyes regain focus.

“..What?”

“We’re in your apartment, Autumn. Here in Canterlot. You’re safe, Autumn.”

“I’m…in Canterlot? Doc? What are you…oh.” Her piercing blue eyes started welling with tears. Aw damnit! She shoved me off and started to quietly sob. “I’m….I’m so…sorry…” Autumn struggled to speak between gasps.

I was never one for these situations, emotions? Gah! This shit was too confusing! “Hey, it’s okay. You got nothing to be sorry about, Sarge. I got your six, battle. Hooah?”

Autumn wiped away her tears with a small laugh. “Fuckin’ Doc. Still squared away after two years of being discharged.” She scooted over and rested her head on my shoulder, “In other words, thanks.”

“Hey don’t mention it. You did the same for me, right?” I said. “Want me to leave ya be, now?”

She grasped my right hoof and with pleading eyes asked “Do you mind staying here with me? Just for a bit? ‘Till I fall asleep?” Damnit, not that eye thing again!

“Yeah. No worries, Autumn. No worries.”

●●●

Doc?

Yeah?

You ever have…a special somepony?

What?

You heard me.

Yeah….yeah I did. Was a while ago.

She have a nice flank?

Why the fuck do ponies always ask me that? I suppose at this point I might as well have on record that yes she did indeed have a ‘nice flank.’

Called it.

Knock it off, Autumn.

Just messin’ with ya Doc. Soooo…if you don’t mind me asking.

Yes. I mind. Not talking about it!

But Doc! C’mon!

No! Fucking…drop…the subject! Aw, wait. Don’t. Don’t you do it!

Do what?

That damned puppy dog eye thing.

Aw what, you mean like this?

Not looking.

Doc!

Nope.

Doc! Lookit!

Okay, fine. I’ll tell you, but only if you promise to stop asking me about it.

Works every time.

Hey! No gloating, or no story.

Sorry.

Well, her name was Cloud Chaser. Like I said, crazy hot flank and was a pegasai to boot. Was totally awesome in…

Cool it, Doc. I didn’t ask for THOSE details.

Heh. Well, she was great. She was smart, funny, beautiful. But I don’t think she and I ever saw eye to eye on the military. She never thought too highly of it, but accepted that I wanted to join.

Hmph. Fuckin’ hippie.

She stuck by me all throughout basic training and showed up at my graduation. All the other stallions were jealous, but that’s beside the point. I was sure that if she could stick by me through all of that, she was the one. Then I got deployed. We had that stereotypical farewell; tears, the works. Initially all is good. Sending letters to her and getting letters back. ‘Bout seven months into deployment, the letters just stopped showing up. But I kept sending them. Had some stupid idea that if I kept sending them, she’d reply. Then finally one day during my tenth month I got a letter.

Oh.

Yeah, one of those. I can still remember exactly what she wrote. “I can’t do this anymore. It hurts me every time I see your letters. I see the fighting on the news and it pains me to think that it might’ve been you who was hurt.”

Shit, Doc. That’s rough.

Yeah, tell me about it. The funny thing is, that I wasn’t mad or nothin’. Can’t explain why, but I just wasn’t. What about you, Autumn?

What about me?

Don’t play dumb.

Never had one.

Wait. For real? You? C’mon, you gotta be kiddin’ me. I mean…uh.

You mean, what?

Uhm.

Oh Celestia, you have a crush on me, don’t you!

Heh. Well I…uh.

Alright then, Doc. What did you mean?

Fuck, I can’t believe I’m about to say this. But here goes. I think that…you’re the kindest pony I’ve ever met. A beautiful one at that, too. And, I…I think I’m falling for you.

Doc?

Yeah, Autumn?

“Doc?”

I groggily awoke, “What the hell? Autumn?”

“Sorry, Doc. But I guess you were muttering in your sleep. Thought you were awake. Something about a beautiful pony that you’re falling for? Guess you were dreamin’ about a special somepony huh?” She winked. I really hope I didn’t mutter anything else out loud.

“What time is it?”

Autumn threw open the blinds and the sunlight came pouring through. “Nine o’clock. It’s my day off so I have to run a few errands out in Ponyville if you wanna help out.” She looked at me out of the corner of her eye.

“Sure. How we getting’ there?”

“Train leaves at eleven fifteen.”

“Train it is then” I said with as much enthusiasm as I could despite being blinded by the sunlight. Autumn trotted out the bedroom door with me following sleepily behind. “Didn’t realize you’re such a morning pony.” She chuckled, then put on her serious face.

“Doc? About last night…”

Author's Note:

Jebas, cranked this out kinda quick. Please drop any helpful critiques, don't be mean. :fluttercry:

Join our Patreon to remove these adverts!
Join our Patreon to remove these adverts!