• Published 24th Apr 2012
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The Adventures of Vampire Cheerilee - totallynotabrony

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Chapter 3

Cheerilee’s head hit the pillow that night. The day had started early in the morning with her waking up in the forest next to a slaughtered rabbit. Aside from that, it had seemed like pretty normal day.

She closed her eyes, praying for sleep. The less time she spent with her thoughts, the better.

There was a faint twinge of hunger down deep inside her. Cheerilee squeezed her eyelids shut. No, I’m going to sleep.

It was not the driving bloodlust that she had felt the previous night, however. It seemed that a bunny full of blood was enough sustenance for two days.

That didn’t make any sense from a calorie standpoint, though. If anything, Cheerilee felt more awake and alert, yet was consuming less. Twilight had theorized that perhaps the blood was broken down into component parts and magically converted into pure energy. That had set Valiant off on some tangent about “nuclear fission,” whatever that was.

Thinking about the crazy orange pony infuriated Cheerilee, but that was better than being disgusted with herself. She managed to drift off to sleep.

The alarm clock functioned as intended and the school teacher rolled out of bed. Since she no longer needed to eat breakfast or pack a lunch, her wakeup times had been drifting later and later. She could no longer claim to be a morning pony, and it was hard to resist the temptation to grab a few extra minutes of sleep.

It was better than being awake with the way her life was going.

Despite the situation, Cheerilee preferred the word “life.” Valiant touted it instead as “undeath,” but that was too disturbing to contemplate. The undead did not teach elementary school.

Cheerilee collected her things and headed off to work. She arrived before anypony else and began opening window shades and dusting desks. Not that she’d ever give up working with colts and fillies, but she relished the peacefulness of the school when the students were not present.

A few motes of dust drifted through the sunshine coming in through the windows. Cheerilee would have considered sitting in the warm glow to relax for a while, if it weren’t for…

She shook her head. It seemed like any small thing could remind her of the vampirism and spoil the good mood she was in.

As usual, the first student to show up was Twist.

“Good morning Ms. Cheerilee!”

“Hello Twist. How are you?”

“It’s going to be a good day! Here, I have something for you.” The filly placed a beautiful-looking candy cane on Cheerilee’s desk.

“Thank you so much, Twist. I’ll save it for later.” Cheerilee smiled and placed the confection in one of her desk drawers.

The Cutie Mark Crusaders, as they called themselves, showed up next. Cheerilee was surprised to see the three of them wearing the garments that Valiant had designed.

Scootaloo’s shirt read I’m with stupid and displayed an arrow that was currently pointing at Apple Bloom, who had countered with I see dumb ponies. Sweetie Bell’s shirt read simply jenius.

While she didn’t agree with the practice, Cheerilee couldn’t really force them to get rid of the clothing unless it was disruptive to the class. She pretended she didn’t see the shirts. She’d been pretending a lot, lately. That thought set her off on another round of painful reminders. It was a vicious cycle.

After school, Cheerilee decided to walk over to the Carousel Boutique to visit Rarity. The unicorn had invited her to come over and talk whenever she pleased. It would give Cheerilee something to do to keep her mind off her growing hunger. Perhaps she could also get the dressmaker’s opinion on the unusual clothing the little ponies were wearing.

When Cheerilee walked in, the saw Valiant lounging on the settee, wearing a dapper black tuxedo and holding a beverage. It was not at all what she had been expecting.

“What are you doing here?” she asked.

“Well, the stallion population of Ponyville is a little on the low side. Rarity asked me to model for her. Between you and me, the work sucks, but I’m getting this snazzy suit out of it for free, so I can’t complain. Rarity might be a manipulative bitch, but she’s an amazing seamstress.”

He took a sip from his glass and grimaced. “This grape juice needs more alcohol. Anyway, that’s what I’m doing here. What about you?”

Cheerilee sat down on a different piece of furniture. “I’m just wasting time before I have to go home and be alone with my thoughts.”

“Sounds depressing. Glad I’m not you.”

“Is someone there?” called Rarity. She stepped into the room. “Oh, hello Cheerilee. What can I do for you?”

“I came by to talk. I just don’t know what to do with myself lately.”

“Oh, you poor dear.” Rarity sat down beside Cheerilee and put a hoof around her shoulders.

“I’m afraid to be social,” admitted the teacher. “I can’t bring myself to go out in public, and I can’t think of any way to pass the time between work, sleep, and…nourishment.”

“Hmm. It sounds like you could use a hobby,” said Rarity. Valiant leaned forward, suddenly interested in the conversation.

“I don’t know what I could do,” said Cheerilee. “I can’t afford much, and I don’t really have many talents outside of teaching fillies and colts.”

“I’ve got it,” said Valiant, jumping to his hooves, and brandishing his glass of juice. “Just imagine this: school teacher by day…vampire slayer by night.”

Rarity rolled her eyes. “I wouldn’t wish that job on my enemies, Valiant.”

“You did it for a while,” he pointed out.

Cheerilee turned sharply. “You…hunted down other vampires?”

Rarity sighed. “Yes. It was intended as practice before we went after Prince Blueblood.”

“I really don’t think I’m qualified,” said Cheerilee.

“Rarity’s day job is making dresses, but that didn’t hold her back,” pointed out Valiant. “You’ve got the killer instinct and the ability already.”

“I don’t believe that.”

Valiant sighed. “You’re like a quadriplegic with a weapon. The potential is there, it’s just not being used.”

“Can we talk about something else?” asked Cheerilee.

“I was leaving anyway,” said Valiant. “I promised to take Pinkie to the strip club.” He walked out.

Rarity shook her head. “I don’t understand why Valiant keeps taking her there. He clearly doesn’t enjoy that kind of thing.”

“He…doesn’t like mares?” asked Cheerilee slowly.

“No, he doesn’t like anypony.” Rarity shrugged. “Getting back to you, though, I really think you could use a hobby.”

“I’ll think about it.” Cheerilee had never gone searching for something to do with her life. After she got her cutie mark, everything had been clear. She suddenly could sympathize with the Crusaders.

That night, Cheerilee slipped out of her house once more. It was time to visit the woods again. She walked slowly, perhaps putting off her task by a small amount of time.

Perhaps she could visit the rabbit trail again. No, perhaps somewhere else. Cheerilee did not like the thought that she might be stuck this way forever, but if that was the case, she couldn’t scare away food sources from one area by visiting it too often.

The shadows of the trees closed in, but her eyesight seemed unaffected. The gentle rustle of the breeze hid the movements of small creatures, and Cheerilee’s ears twitched in an attempt to pick up any clue.

There was a faint, slithering movement among the litter of leaves. A large rattlesnake was moving slowly, lethargic since the warm sun had set.

Cheerilee regarded the snake for a moment. It knew she was there. She slipped around behind. The angular head followed her.

Well, it was still an animal. Cheerilee took a deep breath and jumped forward, just as the rattles on the snake’s tail began to shake. Her hoof came down on the head, crushing it. The sinewy body spasmed, and then fell still.

She paused for a moment. Something felt different. There was a remarkable lack of guilt over killing the snake. While the rattler would have left her alone had she given it a wide berth, it was still dangerous, and perhaps she’d saved the life of some small animal by eliminating it.

That touched off a whole new set of emotions.

Cheerilee shook her head. She didn’t have time for this. Carefully, she began to lap up every drop of the spilled blood.

Pictured: quadriplegic with a weapon