• Published 13th Oct 2011
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Love Triangles and Other Funny Shapes - TheGentlemanCreeper



As the new kid in school, you find yourself overwhelmed with more than just schoolwork...

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8
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Chapter 8

You, Apple Bloom, Scootaloo, and Sweetie Belle walked through Ponyville with your heads hung low. All of you were covered in tree sap with clumps of saw dust and twigs stuck to it. Apple Bloom sighed aloud.
“Looks like woodcuttin’ ain’t our special talent neither.”

“Well I didn’t think it would be in the first place.” you say, trying to dig an acorn out of your mane.

“Well I didn’t think Mr. Tinder could move that fast!” Scootaloo said with a chuckle. “Did you see the look on his face when the tree started to fall?” She put her hooves on her cheeks and made a startled expression, trying to recreate Mr. Tinder’s terror.

“At least it wasn’t as bad as our last fiasco when we tried to renovate that abandoned house.” Sweetie Belle said.

“Ya, I’m still hurting from that.” You say, rubbing your back gingerly.

A look of panic shoots across Scootaloo’s face. “I said I was sorry! How was I supposed to know that ONE beam was holding up the entire house?”

“I was only joking. Learn to take a joke, why don’t you?” you say with a playful push.

“So, you’re feeling better now?” Apple Bloom asks. You give her a nod and tap on your back.

“That medicine you brought over really did the trick. Thanks a lot, Apple Bloom.”

Apple Bloom smiles shyly and blushes. Walking over to a nearby water barrel, you and the fillies dip your hooves and begin to wash yourself off.

“So, I guess we should be getting home by now.” you say aloud as you get the last of the sap off.

“Aww, I was actually having fun. Do we have to?” Scootaloo says, nearly begging.

“Ya, we haven’t hung out like this in long time, you know with school and applebuck season and whatnot.” Apple Bloom says, disappointed.

You see a flash of inspiration goes across Sweetie Belle’s face. “What if we had a sleepover!” she says excitedly.

“You mean like camping?” you ask.

“Ooh! Let’s do that!” Scootaloo says. “We can roast marshmallows and tell scary stories! My dad has a tent we can use!”

“Uhh… Yeah, we can do that.” Sweetie Belle says. You notice she’s forcing a smile, but don’t say anything about it.

“Alright!” Apple Bloom declares. “It’s decided. Let’s meet up at the hill outside Ponyville. I’ve got food covered. Scootaloo’s got the tent. Sweetie Belle, can you get sleeping bags?”

Sweetie Belle thinks for a second and nods. “Yes, I’m pretty sure Rarity has something we can use. What about you?” Sweetie Belle asks, turning to you.

You think all the bases are covered, but a lightbulb goes on upstairs. “I’ll take care of entertainment.”

Without a word, the three fillies nodded and scattered. You run off as well and make your way to the library. You let yourself in and startle Twilight. “Wha-What are you doing?!? You could at least knock, you know!” She says as she hides the book under the desk.

“Sorry Twilight. I need a book that has scary stories. The girls and I are going camping.”

She nods and points you to the horror section. There, you grab the first book you see, which has the title “101 Spine-Tingling Stories”

“Alright, thanks Twilight!” you say as you run out the library door. Twilight thinks you’re out of earshot as you close the door, but you hear her flip through pages furiously before giggling. “Oh Nathaniel, you animal, you.” Deciding to pick up the pace so she doesn’t think you’re spying, you ran home, wanting to let your mother know where you are going and more importantly, pick up your telescope. There was supposed to be a full moon tonight and the weather team had made sure there wasn’t a cloud in the sky.

Walking through the door, your mother smiles and gives you a hug.

“Hi honey, how did it go?” she asked with a snicker. You regret telling her about the Cutie Mark Crusader’s exploits, but she thought it was cute that you were trying to find out who you are and couldn’t help but laugh at some of the crazy antics.

“We almost crushed Mr. Tinder and Mr. Tinder’s house with a tree.” you say nonchalantly as you head upstairs.

As soon as you’re in your room, you can hear your mom cackling. “I won’t be sleeping here tonight.” you call down. She stops laughing and pokes her head into your room. “Oh come on now! Just because I find it funny doesn’t mean you have to get all upset about it!” she says teasingly. Putting your telescope into your saddle-bag, you shake your head.

“No, I’m just going to go camping with my friends. I wanted to let you know, I hope that’s okay.”

Your mom nods and gives you a peck on the cheek. “Have fun. I know you’ll be responsible.”

You smile at her. “Thanks. I’ll see you tomorrow.”

It didn’t take you long to find ‘the hill’ as Apple Bloom had described it. It was at least a half a mile from the lake, which you hoped didn’t make Scootaloo uncomfortable. You couldn’t believe it had already been a week since it happened, but Scootaloo was still having nightmares about it.

You finally come across the gang, who were already trying to get the campsite set up, but failing at it miserably. Scootaloo did indeed have a tent, but had gotten tangled up in a mess of rope, while Apple Bloom was rubbing two sticks together to get a fire started, and going nowhere fast. Sweetie Belle just looked back, trying to give them advice to help. You laughed aloud, which got their attention.

“What’s so funny?” Apple Bloom asks defiantly.

“Just calm down everypony. I got this.”

You start with the tent and walk over to Scootaloo and untangle her from the mess of rope.

“Stand back and hand me things when I ask for them.” you tell her. She nods without a word and you begin to get to work.

The tent went up quickly and actually looked good. It was more than big enough to hold all of you.

“Okay! Now onto that fire!” you say as you walk over to an exhausted Apple Bloom who had whittled the two sticks into nubs trying to get a spark.

“Scootaloo, can you go find a bunch of rocks?” you ask her, which is received with a puzzled look.

“Why rocks?” Apple Bloom asks, trying to figure out what she did wrong.

“It’s just so we don’t burn down half of Ponyville. And Apple Bloom, this would have never stayed lit. It’s still green. Look around for wood again, but this time, get the stuff on the ground. The dryer the better.”

“Ohhh, I get it.” Apple Bloom says, realizing her mistake before trotting off to get more firewood.

Sweetie Belle stared at you, a confused look on her face. “How did you know all that?” she asks.

“My dad used to take me camping at the end of the week. He never really taught me, I just picked it up and learned more after each trip.” you say with a modest smile. Sweetie Belle doesn’t say anything but stares at you with admiration. It finally got awkward around the five minute mark. “Uhh, Sweetie Belle, do you mind getting the bedding laid out in the tent?” you ask. She snapped out of her daze and blushed.

“I, uh, sure! Yes! One moment!” she said before running off.

“I got the rocks!” Scootaloo said as she balanced a stack of rocks on her back before letting them fall before you.

“And I got the wood!” Apple Bloom announced, carrying more than enough firewood. She looks at the sticks and stones, puzzled. “But what do we use to light it?” she asks.

You reach into your pack and pull out a box of matches. Apple Bloom scowls.

“I COULD’AVE THOUGHT OF THAT!” she yells.

Before you knew it, the fire was roaring and all four of you were roasting marshmallows. The sound of the crackling fire was hypnotic and the starry night was just beautiful.

“I have to ask…” Sweetie Belle starts, getting everyone’s attention. “Why do you act so grown up all of the time? I mean, it’s not a bad thing. It’s just…weird.”

You sigh and look up at the stars before answering. “Before my dad d…” you stop. It suddenly got harder to talk. “Before he…”

Apple Bloom scooted next to you and leaned on you. “It’s okay.” she says in a soothing tone. You don’t know why, but just those two words calms you down and make it easier for you.

“Before he disappeared,” you finally manage to say “He would tell me ‘Son, you’re the man of the house while I’m gone.’ before going out to sea. He said that it meant I had to be strong and brave so I can look after everyone I love. I guess I really won’t be a kid until I see him again.” you say. Taking your eyes off of the stars, you look at the three fillies, who were apparently touched by the story. “Come on now! None of that! We’re here to have fun! How about a scary story or two?” you ask, bringing out the book you borrowed from Twilight.

“Okay, but not too scary.” Sweetie Belle cautions. Giving her a nod, you begin.

“This is a true story, told by an anonymous pony,” you begin “While I was still working my way through college, I used to babysit for some extra money. On one night, I was called over to look after two sleeping fillies. Their parents told me to call them if there was any trouble and that they’d be back in a couple hours. After they left, I went upstairs to check in on them. Sure enough, they were sleeping. But the thing that bugged me was the clown statue in the corner of the room. It was bright and colorful, sure, but it was also creepy. Like it was watching me,” you look up to see the three fillies on the edge of their seat, waiting for you to continue “I tried to push it to the back of my mind, but it kept bugging me. So I finally decided to call the parents. They asked me if there was a problem. I told them that their kids were still sleeping, but that the clown statue was giving me the creeps. They didn’t answer for a long time. I thought they hung up until they finally spoke up. What they said horrified me. ‘Get the kids out of there and call the police. We don’t have a clown statue.’”

You closed the book, a little creeped out by the story yourself. Scootaloo was doing her best to keep her composure and Apple Bloom was fidgeting in her seat. Sweetie Belle was lying on the grass and had her hooves over her ears. Getting up you walk towards Sweetie Belle.

“Hey Sweetie Belle, are you okay?” you ask as you go to place a hoof on her shoulder. As soon as you touch her, she jumps into the air and screams at the top of her lungs, making you, Apple Bloom, and Scootaloo scream as well. Sweetie Belle tries to look everywhere at once and is freaking out. She’s babbling and not making any sense, but is obviously scared. Without a second thought, you embrace her.
“Hey, hey, hey. It’s okay. It was only a story. Nothing will hurt you, I promise.” you say. She starts to calm down and you let go of her. “Better?” you ask.

She nods. “Yes… I’m sorry.”

Scootaloo shakes her head. “Don’t be! That was a really scary story! It was real freaky!"

“Yeah, let’s not read anymore or I’ll be having nightmares.” Apple Bloom says sheepishly.

You agree with them, not being a particular fan of scary stories anyway, and put away the book. “I brought my telescope with me, too. Want to do some stargazing?” you ask, holding it up. Sweetie Belle smiles.

“That sounds great.”