• Published 22nd Nov 2013
  • 718 Views, 11 Comments

A Change of Pace - Discord_Nations

A mistake he cannot escape, a home he had to leave behind, a new world with old pain. Coming from a world ravaged by war and pollution, how will this man come to terms with what he has done and the world he has found.

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A Day of Learning and Compromise

I awoke with sunlight in my eyes and... a small rabbit tapping on my side? I looked down to my stomach to see a small bunny sitting there with an annoyed look if I ever saw one. I slowly sat up, being mindful of my still bruised abdomen, and picked up the rabbit. “Hey there little guy,” I said with a little laugh. “Any reason you decided to wake me up?”

The small rabbit, understanding me apparently, pointed to the door with a paw. ‘Now that is a trick,’ I thought. I set him down and got up, he quickly scampered away. I quickly learned today is not going to be an easy day to move around. My body was almost begging me to go back and lay down. But I was determined to not let that get the best of me. I needed to move around, at least for a while. I could never sit in one place without getting bored very easily.

I went out the door after strapping my longsword around my waist and looked around. Nobody was out here, but I did hear some faint singing from Fluttershy out back.

‘By the looks of the sun, it should be a couple hours before noon. So I didn’t sleep too late’ I thought with a sigh of relief. If there was one thing I didn’t like, it was sleeping in so late you didn’t have time to do anything. Though it was entirely possible with my current injuries.

‘I didn’t even put my armor on. What if something attacked? Well I got my sword at least….. Though I don’t know if I’ll survive another attack from those wolves though,’ I thought with worry.

I hastily went back inside to put on my armor and grab my shield and greatsword. ‘I can never be too safe. If they got wolves like that, I don’t wanna meet any other creatures unarmed.’

Feeling safer, if a bit more uncomfortable, in my armor I headed out the door and went out back to the gardens. What I saw terrified me. Fluttershy had two grizzly bears in front of her. She seemed perfectly calm, but from my knowledge bears aren’t safe!

Adrenaline pumping for the start of a second day, I ran over to her, picked her up and ran like a bat out of hell. She seemed really surprised by all of this.

“A-a-alex!?” She said with sheer surprise. “W-what are you doing?”

“Did you not see those bears!?” I yelled with a bit of disbelief. “Those things could kill you! How can you just stand there and act like nothing is wrong!?” I looked back behind me. I quickly found out it was a bad idea. I saw the bears chasing me down with a not so happy look. Great…

Quickly taking Fluttershy off my shoulder and setting her down I readied my shield and sword. I think Fluttershy said something, but I was too focused on the bears to care right now. The first bear was a couple yards from me and I put up my shield. This wasn’t going to be fun. As the bear reared up I heard a loud shout.

“NO!” The bears instantly froze in place, one of them about to knock me for a loop. I looked for the source of the shout. It was… Fluttershy?

‘How the hell can a creature with as soft of a voice as hers yell so damn loud!?’ I thought. Fluttershy continued to scold the bears, “Now, just because somepony does something you don’t like, doesn’t give you the right to hurt them.”

One bear let loose a couple growls and Fluttershy responded like she understood it, “Yes I know he interrupted your meal, and I’m sure he’s very sorry. But during no situation do you ever hurt anypony. You’re bigger than he is.”

I stared in disbelief as the bears actually look like they regretted what they did. ‘Captain’s Log: Start of day 1 in ponyland- ‘Today I witnessed a strange sight. A normally calm, shy, and timid creature made two bears stop in their tracks. She talked as if she understood them and scolded them. They seemed to be able to understand her and listened to every word she said. This will require further analysis and I must make a mental note. Never, under any circumstance, will I piss off Fluttershy.’ End recording.’

Now as impressive as that sounded, I was standing there with my jaw on the ground, so to speak, along with my shield and sword.

After a bit, Fluttershy got done talking with the bears and turned to me. “Now I don’t know what bears are like where you’re from Alex, but these ones are completely harmless,” she stated turning to one. “Isn’t that right?” She said in a cooing voice while hovering up to pet the bear’s head.

“Now Alex, I expect you to give these two a full apology for interrupting their breakfast. They will also apologize for scaring you and attempting to hurt you.” She gave the two bears a stern look. She landed and motioned with a hoof for me to apologize to the bears. Shaking my head swiftly to get myself out of my daze, I nodded and approached the bears.

“I-I’m sorry for interrupting your meal,” I said while scratching the back of my head. It seemed so weird to talk to bears. After a few short growls from the bears Fluttershy seemed satisfied. She then proceeded to introduce us.

“Alex, this is Mr. Bear and Mrs. Bear” She stated, “Mr. and Mrs. Bear, this is Alex.”

Both bears both gave a quick growl and decided to walk away. Fluttershy made no move to stop them. I suppose they wanted to continue eating. Before I could start to head inside to let my sore legs rest after the excitement, Fluttershy turned to me with a nervous expression.

“Uhm… Alex?” She said nervously, “After that incident I’m running behind getting all the other critters their meal before I have to run into town. Would you mind helping out?” She looked embarrassed to ask me this. “If that’s ok with you.” She added quickly.

I walked over to her and bent down so I was eye level with her. “Of course I’m ok with that. It’s the least I could do after causing you so much trouble yesterday and today.”

She seemed to cheer up at this and trotted back to the feeding area. I followed behind her. We fed the animals for about the next half an hour. Afterwards we headed inside and, to my utter lack of surprise, my stomach let loose a deep rumble.

‘Come to think of it, I haven’t had a real meal since I got here.’ Well with food sometimes being in short supply back home, going without food for a day wasn’t unfamiliar to me.

Fluttershy gave a small giggle at the noise. “It sounds like you could use some food.” She almost in a singing tone, “I’ll get some food prepared.” She stopped as she reached the kitchen doorway. “Uhm…. What do you eat? I never thought of that.” She said with a slightly embarrassed smile.

“Well,” I started to reply, “I’m guessing you ponies are like the horses from my world where you are herbivores.” Fluttershy gave a quizzical look and a short nod. I took a deep breath …. This won’t be fun. “Ok …. Lying has never been something I practiced, so I’m going to let you know now. Humans, what I am, are omnivores.”

I refused to look her in the eye. Knowing full well that half of the creatures she cared for were probably edible to me. When I did decide to look at her, all I saw was a look of shock and horror.

“Y-y-you’re not going to eat any of my critter friends a-are you?” She finally managed to get out, then had a look of pure fear, “Yo-you don’t e-eat p-p-ponies, do you!?” She was absolutely terrified.

I sighed and got my greatsword from my back, Fluttershy backed up a step when I got it off, and I set it down against the wall. I did the same with my longsword and shield. I took off my gauntlets and tossed them in front of the gear I just set down with a loud ‘thunk’. I walked over to the slightly cowering yellow pegasus and got down to her eye level. She suddenly found one of the floorboards very interesting. I gently laid a hand on her head and she looked at me, her expression obviously worried.

I took a deep breath and began. “No, I’m not going to to eat any of the critters you care for. And I most definitely won’t eat ponies. This world is different from my own, but I’m sure we can find a compromise for my diet.”

She gave me a confused look, “Uhm, I don’t know how we could do that. I won’t let you hurt my little friends. How can we compromise on an issue where both of us lose?” She gave a slight frown after saying this, her brow furrowing to make a more confused look. I just have her a grin.

“Do you have fish in this world?” I asked, “Because that would be the perfect compromise.”

Fluttershy gave a little smile and nodded. “We most certainly do. In fact there are some that usually swim around in the river just out front.”

“Perfect,” I gave a big grin, “Fish aren’t really around from where I’m from, the waters are polluted to the point that the fish aren’t safe to eat anymore, but it helps pass the time. So I don’t think I’ll mind it too much. I think I’ll make a makeshift fishing pole and get something to eat, then you and Rainbow can tell me all about this world.”

Fluttershy started of towards the door while I went to look for a piece of wood fit for making a fishing pole. As she got close to the door I said, “Hey! Didn’t you say you needed to go to the market for something?” She stopped almost instantly. Next thing I knew she was bolting down the path towards the little town called ponyville with a saddle bag across her back. I barely made out an “Oh my goodness” from her as she galloped passed me. She called out to me, “I’ll be back right back!”

‘Must be some kind of sale or something going on today for running like that.’ I thought. I just shrugged my shoulders and went back to looking for wood. The rest of the day went by peacefully. I managed to catch a few fish, which I was pretty proud of.

Turned out Rainbow didn’t have a single fracture in her ribs and I was pretty relieved at that. After lunch we finally got to talking. I learned this land is called Equestria. Figures with ponies being the main inhabitant. It is run by two Princesses name Celestia and Luna. Now the fact of a diarchy is strange to me. But to tell me that these ponies raised and lowered the sun and the moon?

‘Nope! Nope, I won’t allow it. It makes just as much sense as wolves made out of wood. Which in this crazy world seems to be the norm… This will take some getting used to.’

When it reached close to sundown Rainbow flew off to her own place to sleep since she could actually fly today. After learning a little more about medicine and first aid and a little talking we decided to turn in. I laid on the couch again. I was sure the bed would be too small for me. As Fluttershy reached the base of the stairs she stopped. She looked directly at me and motioned like she was going to speak. I raised an eyebrow and rolled my hand to prompt her to talk.

“I-I was thinking,” She said nervously, “That maybe tomorrow you should, uhm, go out and see the town tomorrow. If that’s ok with you.”

I looked at the ceiling, thinking about it for a moment. “Do you think they would react well to a strange two legged creature dressed in full armor while carrying two weapons and a shield going about their city?”

“W-well I would think you could leave that stuff here, you know, because it looks heavy,” She said not looking me in the eyes. She definitely wasn’t the best liar. She wanted me to keep my things here so I don’t look like a scary monster roaming the city.

“Well I don’t feel comfortable with that,” I stated. She looked like she was about to protest that but I raised a hand to stop her. She waited for me to explain. “When I first got here wolves attacked me, Rainbow outright attacked me, and I saw bears that I didn’t know were peaceful at the time.” I raised a finger with each point.

“Now I don’t care how safe of a place this is, anything can happen. I can not, and will not go anywhere without being prepared. I see why you want me to go out so I’m not stuck here all the time. But I want to be prepared for anything to happen.” With that I rolled over and faced away from Fluttershy and tried to fall asleep. The last thing I heard was the soft clopping of hooves going up the stairs.

Author's Note:

Alright! New chapter. Not sure how long I can update like this. I have recently found myself with a lot of free time lately. Hope you enjoyed the new chapter!