• Published 8th Apr 2014
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Shadow's Enigma - Note Sketch

With his dark past heavy on his mind, Sombra is put to the test as he begins a reformation process. Though his mind is no longer crowded with the influence of dark magic, his heart is none the lighter. Let the test begin.

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22. Let's Bake!

Two days have passed since Twilight's first training in the dark arts...if you could call it that. Two days of rigorous search for her anchor and still nothing came up. She gave out a deep sigh of frustration as she leaned back on her chair. Looking at the ceiling she blow her bangs from her forehead in boredom.

"Having trouble?" Sombra asked from the other side of the library. He had taking back his habit of reading anything and everything related to Equestrian history that the last few days of 'excitement' has neglected him the opportunity to do.

"No no...okay yes." Twilight responded as she stretched out her arms and arched her back on her seat.

"Take you're time. This is a very important step in your training." Sombra said without lifting his gaze from his book. Any other time that gesture would not have bothered her, but right now, it was almost as he was mocking her when he said that.

"Didn't I only ask you to train me like the day you brought me to the field? How did you come up with a whole training schedule so fast?" Twilight asked as her annoyance escalated. Again Sombra didn't glance at her, only turned his page.

"I had been playing with the idea of teaching dark magic to some pony for a time. My mark in history if you will."

"Uh huh...and who were you planning on teaching it to? Dinky?" Twilight joked.

"...No..." Sombra said as his eyes stopped moving for the second it took for him to say it. It was subtle but the mare took quick notice of that.

"You were!" She said standing up from her chair.

"Sparkle, focus on your anchor." Sombra said as he waved a hoof at her. Twilight simply pouted as she sat back down and began to read over her journal.

Silence reigned for a while longer as both ponies read their books. It was almost a homey atmosphere where each household pony did their own thing while sharing a roof. It was something Sombra hadn't experienced in quite a while. All that was missing was a child to start crying wanting for something or other. A smile spread across his face as the thought crossed his mind, a thought that soon was interrupted by a soft knock at the door.

"I'll get it!" Spike screamed from else where in the library as he rushed over to greet the visitor. "Oh hi Pinkie!"

Sombra felt a chill go down his spine as her name was said. He had not seen her or Fluttershy since the welcome party incident and though he knew he couldn't avoid them forever, he was still not prepared face them. Sombra closed his eyes and took deep breath as he readied himself for what was to come. But as Pinkie entered the room he was suddenly confused for the usual upbeat mare was acting timid and hesitant. Sombra's purple flames flickered in response to her presence.


"Hello Pinkie." Twilight waved from her seat as she saw her friend. "What brings you here?"

"I was wondering if I could borrow Sombrie for the day."

Twilight and Sombra traded glances as Pinkie began to fidget with herself. She was Sombra's reformer, there was no need to ask for permission to take him on any trip she deemed necessary, yet here she stood asking in a shy manner. "What am I required for?" He finally asked.

"I was just wondering if you could help me make a new kind of cupcake I came up with. I need some pony to test taste it."

Without much thought Sombra began to answer. "Sure, but since I am no good at baking just let me know when you're done and-" He was, however, suddenly cut off when Twilight jerked him to the side using her magic. She sent him a glare that almost made him paranoid again.

"I think you should go with Pinkie. It will be good for you to get out of the library." She said as her smile returned to her face, but something about her expression gave him a deadly threat about denying otherwise.

"S-Sure." Sombra said getting up from his seat as he made his way over to Pinkie who had lighten back up as if whatever had troubled her had disappeared. With a nod to the mare, Pinkie began to make her way out but before Sombra could follow he was pulled by Twilight who had come close enough to whisper.

"Behave yourself." She said before going back to her reading. All Sombra could do was gulp as he began to feel out of his element once more.

The walk to Pinkie's home was the usual. Whatever was bothering her before had disappeared as she hopped along side him. It was still awkward for him to be around her, but he knew that he had to face things sooner than later.

"It's been a while since I've seen you." Sombra said as he attempted to start small talk. "For the mare responsible for my 'reformation' you seem to have left me alone. Are you perhaps saying that I am now reformed?"

"Now that you mention it..." Pinkie said as she came to a sudden stop and placed a hoof to her chin. "I'm not sure when you're done being reformed."

Raising an eyebrow Sombra continued the conversation. "So when exactly am I going to be free to go out without having an escort?"

"Don't you already leave on your own anyway?"

"I mean...officially."

"Dunno. When Discord was reformed he was presented to Princess Celestia."

"Discord? The lord of chaos from the history books?"

"Yup. He was reformed by Fluttershy." Pinkie said with a smile.

"Pray tell. How long did it take?"

"A day."

"You're joking."

Pinkie just giggled at his surprise. "No, Fluttershy has a way with animals. I'm not saying Discord is an animal, but it's pretty close. So why do you ask? Do you feel like you're reformed?" She asked as she stuck her tongue out, a teasing gesture at the still so serious stallion. But as He began to think about it, he came to halt. Looking down Sombra began to think about his 'adventures' here in Ponyville.

"No...I don't believe so." He said as he began to talk again, quickly catching up the the smiling mare. The rest of the trip was spent in joyful silence. It was almost funny for Sombra when sense of deja vu came to him. He had walked this path the day he arrived to Ponyville. A lot has happened since then.

"Well Come on in!" Pinkie shouted out as she entered Sugarcube corner, Sombra close behind. As the bells rang from the door's movement, the ponies within all glanced the duo entering to exchange a few words. Mr. Cake who was finishing a transaction waved at them in hello as they walked to the register.

"Hi Pinkie, Hi Sombra." He said as he gave his customer some change.

"Hello Mr. Cake. I'm taking Sombrie back into the kitchen so he can help me bake." She said as she passed them by, sparing a smile for him. As the orange stallion looked at Sombra to exchange glances they paused.

"Nice to see you again."

"Y-Yes. I am glad you and you're family are doing well." Sombra responded half hesitantly. This trip to Sugarcube Corner was definitely much different from before.

Trying not to think about it, Sombra continued on to the kitchen where Pinkie waited for him. A quick look around made it obvious that she had already gotten everything out. The stable was filled with all kinds of ingediants, ones he did not recognize. As he had feared, the different in their time periods was very apperant.

"That's...a lot of stuff." Sombra said, almost shocked at the large array of objects around him."

"Yup! We'll need them all if we're going to make these cupcakes." Pinkie said with a smile, her eyes sparckling as her plan began to unfold.


"So I just invite him over to bake?" Pinkie asked her friend as she went over the clipboard in front of her.

"Why of course. I am sure Sombra will have no idea of what to do and so you will have to get close to help him." Rarity said with a wink. Once you two get comfortable being close Sombra will take notice of your feminine side. What stallion wouldn't make his move?"

"I-I'm not sure about this. Sombrie doesn't seem the type to 'make a move' on a mare." She said doubtfully.

"Oh darling please. You simply have to get him to notice you, nothing more."

"If you say so..." Pinkie said as she looked down at her list of activities. "Step One."


"Time to get everything out!" Pinkie shouted as she raised a hoof in excitement. Her sudden statement made Sombra raise and eyebrow.

"This isn't everything?" He asked, gesturing at the already laid out ingredients

"All except one!" Pinkie said as she walked over to a cabinet. She got on her back legs as she reached up but the final box was just barely out of reach.

Now he'll come close, stand next to me like I am and I'll 'accidentally' fall back enough for him to hold me in his arms. Pinkie thought as she smiled to herself, her face turning slightly red at the thought of being held. To her displeasure, the box popped next to her as Sombra used his magic to lift it down, not even taking a step closer to her.

"Good, now we can begin right?" Sombra said as he inspected the recipe book and the ingredients as Pinkie pouted to herself as she held the box in her arms. She took a deep breath and slowly walked over to him.

"It's okay Pinkie, they'll be more opportunities..." She said to herself.

"What was that?"

"Nothing! Now, lets make the batter first." She said as she gave the dark stallion a bowl. "Just place everything I tell you into it."

Applejack once helped me make cupcakes, she didn't do so well in gathering the ingredients, so when I speed read through all of these things on the list Sombra won't be able to keep up. I'll have to come over and help him and once we're close he's sure to notice the new make up Rarity was nice enough to lend me.

"Ready?" Pinkie asked as she looked over at Sombra who was lifting random containers to glance at what they were.


"SugarEggsChocolatechipsBaking sodaACupOfFlourWheatGerm. Once they are all in the bowl we'll have to stir it all up nice and well. Any Questions?" Pinkie said as fast as her mouth could allow her, and for her standards, it was pretty fast. She managed to speak at about three words a second and to any pony's ears would have been impossible to understand.

"Yes, why are we using the recipe for muffins instead of cupcakes?" Sombra said as stirred the contents of the bowl with a stirring pin, all of which was floating in the air with his magic.

"Y-You managed to get everything down?!" Pinkie shouted out in a surprise.

"Of course. I read the book before we began and even though you spoke a little fast, I had already inspected the ingredients so I knew where each was. Not sure what each one does exactly or what it's used for, but if you named it, it's in here. So are we baking muffins instead?"

"...Yes." Pinkie said almost defeated by Sombra's actions. He caught a small sense of distraught in the mare as her puffy mane lost some of it's roundness, but before he could say anything she shouted out in a happy manner. "Now that we're done with this lets put them to bake!"

Pinkie was quick to get out what was still needed, mainly being the pan that was to go in the oven. She took it out and placed it on the table for Sombra to pour out the batter onto. Getting the hint, he did as he was gestured and poured the six holes on the pan. Once done she opened the oven which was already preheated and set them in to bake.

"So now we wait?" Sombra asked as he sat, staring at the muffins through the small window on the oven.

"Yup!" Pinkie replied as she came next to him to sit as well. Last chance! Now that we're alone we can get cozy together. Rarity said to act tired and to lean on his shoulder. The sudden touch of out furs will make him to glance over and he will have to say something! She thought to herself. As the final part of her plan was set into motion, the mare gently pressed her head against Sombra's soft shoulder.

The feeling of Pinkie's head on him almost made him jump, but Sombra remained composed as he glanced to his side. A smiling mare with her eyes closed was all he saw. "I'm a little tired." She said as she lazily opened one eye to speak to him.

"T-Then you should rest." He responded as he returned his gaze to the muffins, his cheeks showing a hint of pink from her show of affection. All Sombra could think about was how fast his heart was beating as the soft sound of Pinkie breathing filled the room. Pinkie herself had an accelerated heart rate. She blushed as she patiently waited for Sombra to move, speak, or do anything at all. The silence was almost choking her with anticipation.

The sound of a foal crying suddenly echoed in the kitchen. Just outside the Cakes called out to Pinkie. "Pinkie dear? Pumpkin is crying and we're having a flood of customers, can you handle it please?"

Pinkie heard something crack within her as the request reached her ears. Looking up she saw Sombra return a gaze of sadness. She wasn't sure what he was thinking about, but she wasn't allowed much time to ponder. Sombra stood up gently, leaving Pinkie down as he began to make his way over to where the crying was coming from.

"You said you're tired. You stay here and rest, I'll look after the foal." He said before leaving the room. As he left Pinkie felt herself melt into the ground.

"Darn it!" She said as she rolled around on the ground in frustration. "Everything went wrong! I told Rarity that this plan wouldn't work! I'm so stupid." Finally she came to a stop, her face staring up into the ceiling. She heard hoof steps up there, meaning Sombra had reached the children's room. "Still...It was still kinda nice having him around. No pony else had ever agreed to bake with me after the little incident with Applejack. And he tried his best to keep up with me even though he said he didn't know anything about baking..."

Pinkie's frown became a smile as she began to feel silly at how she was acting. "He's so nice to me, even letting me stay down here to rest while he took care of anything that could bother me." Pinkie jumped up on her hooves as she rushed upstairs to the foal's room only to find them sound asleep with Sombra cradling them in his magic.

"That was fast." She said with a smile, walking over and peeking over the tall stallion at the foals.

"I've picked up a few pointers from a friend." He responded, bringing the children back down to their crib. "Besides, Pumpkin seems to be quite fund of me."

"Well you did save her that night with the Ursa Major." Pinkie teased at him as they began to walk out.

"Will a day go by when I am not reminded of that time?"

"Give it a year or two." Both laughed a little as they made their way back to the kitchen where Pinkie was quick to start putting things away. She had purposely placed out more stuff than they had needed to confused Sombra, but that plan did not seem to have worked out at all. As she was putting things up she accidentally tipped over a cup, and in the great hurry to keep it from falling, she slipped and slammed her arm on the table, causing everything on the opposite end to catapult out.

Though Sombra came out unscathed, Pinkie was not so lucky. She was covered with the extra batter from the muffins. Though his first instinct was to see if she was alright, her appearance caused a chuckle to escape him.

"Are you *ahem* okay?" He asked as he come to her aid, doing his best to keep from laughing.

"I-I think so." Pinkie said as she tried to stand with Sombra's help, but to their own misfortune, Her hoof slipped on the batter now on the floor, causing the mare to pull him down with her to the ground. They took a moment to recover, but once they opened their eyes, both blushed as they realized what position they were in.

Pinkie was hard pressed against the ground under Sombra's weight, though using his front hooves to lift himself helped, they were still to the side of Pinkie who stared blankly at the stallion towering over her. They remained still they their eyes met, and though now both were covered in batter, neither noticed. All they could think about was one another's 'forced' embrace. Clearing his throat, Sombra got up and allowed the mare to do the same. They sat with their backs to one another in silence at they tried to control their blush from darkening.

"S-Sorry." Sombra finally said to break the atmosphere.

"It-It's okay, my fault..."

Again silence, but this time it was because Sombra stood up to get a towel. Not one he used on himself though, his first reaction was to clean up Pinkie who had batter all over herself, ignoring the fact he was no different. Soft giggles were heard as Sombra pressed the towel against the mare's face and made sure to get as much of the batter as he could. Finally giving her a break he paused to see how well he did.

"Pity. The batter ruined the make up Rarity gave you." He said as he continued to clean Pinkie, this time around the shoulders and neck.

"Wait! You noticed?!"

"Yes. I noticed the moment I saw you at the library."

"Why didn't you say anything?"

"I wasn't aware I was supposed to." He said as he finished cleaning her off. Pinkie took hold of the towel and threw it against his face.

"Meanie. Now it's my turn."

Sombra wanted to respond, but wasn't allowed to by the rather rough movement of the towel on him. He patiently waited for her to finish, but as soon as she pulled the towel away she went into a giggle fit.

"Pfft. Your mane!" She said as she pointed at the now very messy charcoal mane of his.

"Very funny." Sombra said as he tried to fix his mane with his hoof. As Pinkie flailed around, he noticed he had missed some batter on her face. Thinking nothing of it, he placed his hooves at Pinkie's cheeks, quickly getting her attention. He leaned close and licked the batter from nose, sending the mare into a very bright red blush.

"W-W-W-What was that for?!" She shouted out, crawling backwards as Sombra began to find the taste of the batter.

"You had some batter left on you. It's very tasty, the muffins are sure to be delicious." He said as he stood up to glance at the oven. "Think they're ready yet?"

Unable to bring herself to speak, Pinkie simply nodded a few times as she tried to bring herself under control. Sombra proceeded to to take out the pan as the smell of muffins filled the air. Pinkie's thoughts raced as she held her cheek, they memory of him holding her as he leaned close replaying in her head.

"You coming?" Sombra said as he lifted the muffins out of the pan and placed them to cool on a plate. "Let's eat them together."

"Y-Yeah..." She said, finally getting to her hooves. He didn't have a problem getting so close to me...does he maybe...like me? She though as she got closer. Sombra shot her a small smile as he levitated a muffin for her to grab. Maybe...just maybe...

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