• Published 25th Aug 2013
  • 12,159 Views, 244 Comments

An Apple A Day - Esle Ynopemos

A collection of thirthy-minute short stories about the rootinest, tootinest farm-filly this side of the Everfree. There'll be a chapter a day for thirty days. I ain't no fancy arithmeticker, but that adds up to a whole month of good, health

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30: Portrait of a Mare [Comedy]


(There were other images to choose from, but for obvious reasons, I picked the one with Applejack in it.) ))

Tally Ho knew it was bad form to stroke his mustache overmuch. A little once in a while lent him an air of thoughtfulness, but too much stroking made him look like he had a compulsion. The framed print before him, however, had him stroking his mustache til he wore it nearly down to a bare lip. It was like nothing he had ever seen before. It was a divine experience, looking upon this piece. He felt as though he had not been a complete pony before his eyes fell upon it. Why, he nearly dropped his monocle!

“Ennui,” he said, beckoning to his companion. “Ennui, my dear, come look. You simply must see this!”

Ennui gave him a small, tired sigh, brushing a black forelock out of her eyes. “What is it zis time, Tally? Another basket of fruit, hm?”

Tally placed a hoof at her back and gestured to the photograph. “Look, love.”

Her eyes widened ever so slightly, and a soft gasp was drawn from her. “Oh my...”

“Indeed.” Tally nodded sharply. “I've never seen its like before.”

Ennui reached her hoof out, stopping short of actually touching the piece out of reverence. “Ze lighting... Ze raw, melancholic emotion!”

“Look at her expression,” Tally said. “You can truly feel her existential struggle to define herself in an increasingly consumeristic world.”

“Her eyes,” Ennui said, staring at the picture. “Zey reflect ze plight of ze working-class pony as she faces a future of uncertainty.”

“Whoever took this is a master,” said Tally. “I must meet them!”

A voice rose behind the two patrons. “Zen you are fortunate, for I, Photo Finish, am here.”

Tally Ho and Ennui turned around to see the strangely-dressed photographer striking a dramatic pose. Beside her, an orange pony fidgeted with the hem of her dress. “Can't believe Rarity talked me into goin' to this thing,” she grumbled to herself. “Wouldn't even let me wear my hat!”

Ennui gasped. “Is zat ze model?”

Photo Finish nodded curtly. “Zis is Applezach,” she said, pushing Applejack forward. “You may look and ask questions, but you may not touch.”

Tally dipped his head low. “Miss, it is an absolute honor! Your pose is so rugged and natural, you must tell me what your method is.”

Applejack blinked. “My... method?”

Ennui crowded her companion out of the way. “Miss, if I might ask. Your expression in ze piece... so contemplative, yet tempered with a touch of uncertainty and, dare I name it, fear. What thoughts were going through your head when zis moment was captured? I must know.”

Applejack coughed into her hoof. “Well, ya see...”


Applejack whistled as she strode through the last field between Sweet Apple Acres and Ponyville. She was due at Carousel Boutique at two o'clock, and she aimed to arrive a little early. Though not too early; last time she had shown up at the Boutique before she was due, she had learned a little too much about Rarity's activities with Fluttershy after their weekly spa dates.

Then again, privately, she could admit a part of her could stand to know a little more about what went on with those two. 'Test-fitting for a client,' Rarity had hastily explained, but that blush on her cheeks told a different story...

Applejack's ear flicked as she heard a noise behind her. “Is somepony there?” she asked, turning to see.

She was blinded by a bright flash.

“I, Photo Finish, have just captured ze perfect image!”


“Uh...” Applejack rubbed the back of her neck. “Pretty much what y'all were sayin'. 'Bout workin', an' the future existin', that sorta stuff. Yep.”

Author's Note:

Alternate title: Ceci N'est Pas Une Pomme.

And that makes thirty. Boy, Applejack has had a tough month. The poor mare's been frozen, beaten by children, arrested more than once, crammed in a closet and abducted by aliens... she's had her heart broken, her leg broken, her trees think she's evil... she's been duplicated by a magical mishap, duplicated by an errant changeling, revealed herself to be a changeling... her folks have died off, her grandma's died off, she's died off at least once...


Poor girl needs a break.

As do I. It'll be a week or two before I start posting the next compilation. Gotta let my typin' fingers cool off, then build up a buffer zone in case I miss a prompt or two, and draw up another cover image. Next in line is Twilight Sparkle, last of the Mane Six. Hope you folks have enjoyed the series so far, and I hope to hear from you in a couple weeks when I post Thirty Days, Thirty Twilights.