• Published 27th Mar 2014
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Dissociative - Strawberry Jelly



On the rock farm, we spent our days working the fields. There was no talking, there was no smiling, there were no friends, and I was most certainly lonely.

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Chapter 3 - The Pie Sisters Arrive

Dissociative
By Strawberry Jelly
Chapter 3 - The Pie Sisters Arrive


It wasn't a strange occurrence in Equestria for there to be late night trains from one place to another. In fact, many conductors made quite a bit of extra bits for volunteering to work the graveyard shifts. Nobody really wanted to stay up the entire night only to pilot the train for only a couple dozen night birds that like to travel in the dead of the night.

Currently there was only five mares riding the train, to which they sat in their own areas for the most part. Marble Brimstone Pie was one such pony, sitting in her own corner with her bulky typewriter in front of her. She was heading to Ponyville for a vacation to see her sister, Maud, that would be arriving in the town the very same day. It was rare for the Pie sisters to all manage to take the same week off of work, but although Marble was skeptical to this, her younger sister, Limestone, insisted that their parents would be okay on the farm alone.

Although Marble was technically on a vacation, she really didn't see any problem with working a little on her spare time. With her agent breathing down her neck to release her next book, she was in a bit of a panic to finish 'Starcrossed' within the next month. Admittedly though, it was hard for her to even focus on the erotica that her fans were craving.

“I wonder how Pinkie's been,” She murmured to herself, allowing a very soft smile at the idea of seeing her elder twin. Although they tried to stay in contact with letters, Marble's schedule tended to make it rough for her to reply as often as she wanted.

She let out a soft sight and decided to place the typewriter back into its carrying case. Romance novels were hard enough to write on their own, let alone whenever she was distracted by more important matters.

“No good, huh?” A voice called, carefully balancing two drinks on her back with a sweet smile, “You shouldn't work when you're stressed.”

Marble shook her head and took the hot chocolate that was offered to her, “Thank you, Coco. I guess I am a little nervous; it's been years since I've seen my sisters, so I just want it to go without a hitch.”

Coco didn't particularly understand, being a single child, but she knew how important family was to the young writer, so she nodded and offered her a warm smile. “I just hope they don't mind you having me come along.”

Marble simply let out a giggle and reached her hoof out to meet Coco's, “I promise it's okay; Pinkie loves meeting new ponies, Maud is pretty good about accepting everyone, and Limestone... Well, I doubt she'll care.”

“I guess I'm just nervous about meeting your family,” Coco's cheeks flushed a little, but her shy smile didn't falter. “I'm also a bit relieved that I finally finished those costumes for Bridleway.”

“What's your next project, by the way?” Marble smiled a little at hearing that. She knew that Coco had been both unbelievably busy and stressed from work; not that it hadn't made her a good amount of bits, but she hardly had any down time for the two to actually spend time together.

“I don't even want to think about it,” Coco shook her head, offering a soft giggle to go with her smile. It was no secret that her life had improved ever since she dumped Suri on her head, but even she needed a little time away from it all. “By the way, why are we taking such an early morning train? It seems a bit strange to leave home at three in the morning.”

“Pinkie was planning on throwing Maud a 'Welcome Back' party, so I was wanting to make it there in time,” Marble frowned a little and reached her hoof up to brush Coco's beautiful cyan bangs from her face. “You really should show your eyes off.”

“Look who's talking,” Coco playfully glared at the mare across from her and brushed the strands of hair away to show off the gray mare's violet gaze, “You really should pin your bangs back; I still think it looks better than hiding behind your mane.”

“Or you could get a manecut,” Marble pouted and puffed her cheeks out. Coco really did look better with a shorter mane like the one she had when they first met. Now she wore it longer with curls that made her look more like one of those Canterlot ponies.

“Hey, I like the new style,” Coco pouted in return, playfully bouncing a curl against her hoof. Both mares couldn't help but giggle at their argument and return back to normal conversation after only a moment. That's just how they acted with one another, and it did wonders to ease the stress from both of their daily lives.

~~~

“So where are you two off to?” Ratchet looked back at the two mares that sat in the taxi carriage that he was pulling. While most taxis in larger cities were simply a seat with a hood, he preferred to pull an actual carriage; mostly because he got it as a great bargain, but partially because he was allowed to charge more for the service as well. Not that Ratchet was a particularly greedy stallion, but he had mouths to feed and bills to pay.

“Ponyville if you don't mind,” The younger of the two mares said while holding the door open for her companion, “If it's not too far.”

Ratchet shook his head and smiled, “Nah, it's only about a three hour carriage ride; so if you got the time then I got the time.”

“Sounds good to me,” Limestone brushed her pale gray mane back behind her ear with a smile. After climbing into the carriage, she looked over at the azure unicorn that sat next to her, “Nervous to be going back to Ponyville, Beatrix?”

The unicorn's deep lavender eyes settled on the landscape that had started to pass by with the carriage going into motion. “Maybe a little; the last time I was there I had caused some... issues.”

She hated it when ponies called her by her full first name like that, but Limestone was the only exception to that rule. A fact that had initially made Trixie uneasy around the rock farmer, but something she grew used to over the months that she had worked with her. While she had lost contact with the others at the farm, Limestone had literally hunted her down halfway across Equestria in order to give her the invitation to come back with her to Ponyville.

“You also told me that you apologized,” Limestone put a reassuring hoof on Trixie's withers, “Besides, I think it'll be a nice surprise for you to visit again on some friendlier terms.”

The unicorn closed her eyes and turned to face the mare next to her and opening them back up with an uneasy smile, “I normally don't do shows in the same town twice.”

“Then don't make a show out of it; just make it a visit,” Limestone offered a slight smile to her friend, “Now come on and stop being so insecure; I like it when you're a bit braver.”

Trixie's smile faltered and contorted into one of sincerity as she nodded, “You're right! The Great and Powerful Trixie must always make a good appearance!”

“There we go!” Limestone giggled and wrapped a hoof around the mare's shoulder, pulling her into a warm half-hug, “Keep that and you'll be fine.”

A bump in the road bounced the two mares in their seat again, having a voice call back up from outside the carriage, “Sorry ladies, these back roads can get a little rough sometimes.”

“Oh no, you're fine!” Limestone called out, poking her head out of the window to see the stallion.

“So, what's in Ponyville if you don't mind me asking?” He asked without looking back and focusing on the road.

“My sister's coming in town, so I was going to come visit her. It'll be the first time in years that all of us got together,” Limestone replied, closing her eyes at the feeling of the wind blowing through her mane.

“No offense, but y'all don't really look too much alike.”

“The Great and Powerful Trixie most certainly was not born on a rock farm! She is here as... a plus one,” Trixie shot down that idea harder than Manehattan had done to her after the first Ponyville incident.

“Jeeze, sorry; I just assumed,” He frowned, but still didn't look back to see the angry expression that Trixie was wearing as her head poked out the other window.

“Don't mind her,” Limestone giggled a little, “She's just a friend that used to work with me.”

“I aint gonna question the company you keep little missy,” He shook his head and continued, “I just heard some pretty vicious rumors about her in my travels.”

“Rumors are just that, rumors!” Trixie shouted again before pulling herself back into the carriage. She crossed her hooves over her chest and pouted at the driver's words.

“She's honestly not that bad if you get to know her,” Limestone smiled and peeked back at the huffing unicorn next to her, “Just a little bit of a grumpy gus sometimes.”

“I am most certainly not a grumpy gus!” Trixie pouted even more, pulling a granola bar from her bag and biting into it angrily. A rather bad habit that she had picked up back on the rock farm was to eat whenever she was upset. Something that Limestone had noticed starting to take a toll on the unicorn's body in the form of a little extra flab around her flanks; although she thought better of mentioning it.

“You aren't exactly the queen of kindness right now either,” Limestone teased and climbed back into the carriage. Soon she had her own granola bar, although hers was littered with small chocolate chips. Unlike her friend, she didn't really need to worry about getting fat; working on a rock farm almost ensured your body becoming more muscle than anything else.

~~~

The last member of the pie sisters was arriving in Ponyville in mere minutes, watching out the window of her carriage with a wry frown. It had been nearly over a decade since she last spoke to any of her family, but that doesn't mean she hadn't gotten any mail from any of them. No, Pinkie sent her letters at least once every two weeks, just as she always had before what happened all of those years ago. Normally she would have shrugged of the very idea of coming to see her sisters, as the guilt still ate away at her and her other sisters still probably hated and blamed her.

Not that they didn't have the right to; every second of her loneliness was warranted. The only interaction she had with her family was at the last Grand Galloping Gala where Pinkie decided to destroy the festivities. Of course the gray mare had expected no less from her party throwing sister, but it was a godsend that she hadn't recognized her. Pinkie was always so good with faces too, so it would have taken no less than divine intervention to keep Octavia as just another mare.

Normally she would have avoided the gathering of her family this time around as well, but there was something different in Pinkie's letter. It sounded far more urgent, like she had something on her mind that showed... depression. Something that she hadn't seen since the day she fled the rock farm. While Octavia wanted to avoid seeing her sisters at any cost, she truly did love her sisters; especially Pinkamena. Not just because she was the only one that had forgave her, but because Pinkie was the only one in her family to show interest in her passion for music.

There were many days on that farm where she would help Pinkie write silly little songs for her to sing to their family. Sure, their parents didn't really seem to care about it, and Maud was... Well, Maud, but Limestone truly loved being sung to sleep and Marble was just happy to see her twin smile. Father didn't approve of his daughters leaving the rock farm, but luckily Octavia had soaked the brunt of his anger so that her sisters could leave without any rage from their parent.

“I hope she enjoys it,” Octavia mumbled under her breath as she looked over the sheets of paper in front of her. It was a song that she had been working on for years now, but it was still missing something oh so important. It was missing that Pinkie Pie touch that always made her music shine brighter than the stars themselves.

“We're almost there, mam,” The voice of her driver called back to her.

“Thank you, Gray Mane,” Octavia replied to her servant with a kind smile. A smile that was as brittle as glass; her nervousness a hammer ready to strike it at any moment. She lived a lavish life in Canterlot, but her heart was still as empty as ever. Most ponies assumed that the fiasco at the gala had ruined her reputation, but the ponies that mattered understood just how unavoidable the chaos was.

She wasn't the most rich mare in Canterlot, but she had a home that she owned, food on her plate, and a servant that she honestly would be lost without. Octavia straightened her tie out as she continued, “How do I look?”

“Lovely as ever, Madame,” Gray Mane only peeked back at his mistress for a moment before turning his attention back to the road.

“Are you sure? I do want to make a good impression on my sisters; it's been years since I last saw them and we didn't part on the best of terms,” Octavia felt a sinking feeling in her stomach as she took a forced deep breath. It felt like the first time she had ever performed on stage; that wrenching feeling in her gut that almost made her want to turn the carriage around and return to Canterlot. Her head was reeling with questions, ideas, and fears that already was causing a migraine to threaten her.

“Madame, you know how I feel about this trip. I just want you to finally make up with them, and I'm sure they will be more than happy to see you,” Gray Mane replied matter-of-factly. His outspoken personality was actually what made her hire the stallion. She couldn't stand the idea of being like those other Canterlot ponies that want a servant that is only 'speak when spoken to'. Maybe it was her loneliness that made her that way, but it was something that she enjoyed either way.

“I know you do, Gray Mane, and I thank you for it. You're honestly the best friend a mare could ask for,” Octavia smiled again, feeling that tension ease up a little as she talked with her servant. Gray Mane was more than just a servant to Octavia though; he was a friend. An idea that both had openly told one another, although Gray Mane insisted that he still be paid for his service. He really did take that joke all too seriously.

“It'll be about another five minutes,” He informed her with a slight smile flashed back at her, “Also, I think you do look rather lovely.”

Octavia's cheeks flushed a little, but she nodded in appreciation. Even if it were a lie, his words were enough to give her that boost to finally confront her mistakes from all of those years ago. She was ready to see Pinkie, Maud, Limestone, and Marble for the first time in so long.

Author's Note:

Introductions, introductions. I rather enjoyed this chapter though, despite it not really focusing any on Pinkie.

Hope you enjoyed it though, so feel free to like, dislike, comment, critique, or scenario this story. I do actually appreciate what you all have to say, whether it's good or bad, as it does help me out in the long run.