• Published 5th Nov 2014
  • 10,276 Views, 225 Comments

Broken then Healed - Tohshi

A young man has to learn to live with the consequences of his brash decision, as he learns to live in a new town, a new world, and a new body.

  • ...

Chapter 11

Chapter 11
A loud pop later and we stood outside the train station. Teleport number six was the least peasant of the lot that day. The world spun for a few seconds before once more my lunch met the floor. I was not always the best of friends with the floor.

“Sorry,” Twilight said. Her hoof ran up and down my back.

My world stopped spinning though I could feel the energy draining out of me. My mind had stopped running a million miles a minute and I could tell a crash was headed my way. Looking at Twilight I said, “Not your fault. Coffee was stronger than I expected.”

Twilight giggled slightly. Lyra had faired better than I had with the teleportation though she looked a bit extra green. She stumbled over to us from a few feet away. Lyra said, “Well thanks for saving us the time. I don't think I like teleportation all that much.”

“Your not alone in that one. Only Spike seems to like it at all,” Twilight stated. Her smile matched the happiness dancing in her eyes. “I think he is just used to it though.”

“How long will the train take?” I asked. My footing felt secure again, though I still could feel the crash rushing towards me.

“Only two or so hours,” Lyra said cheerfully. “Which means I might be able to make it to tonight's Orchestra night out. Only happens every third Wednesday.”

A light clicked in my head. Wednesday was the day of the Cutie Mark Crusaders' meeting. I asked, “Do you know where Sweetie Belle and her friends have their meeting? I wanted to go, if that is alright?”

“Depending on how you feel when we get home, I don't mind,” Lyra said. Her gaze turned to Twilight. “Don't they normally met out on Sweet Apple Acres?”

“I'm pretty certain so,” Twilight said. “Applejack would know for certain. It's early enough that I would bet you could make it there in time. That is if Lyra says you can go.”

I laughed lightly. Lyra and Twilight gave me curious looks. I said, “I just feel very grown up and very not grown up all at the same time.”

Twilight seemed more confused, though comprehension spread across Lyra's face. The train pulled into the station. Lyra was startled into action. She rushed over to the ticket vendor and returned in an equal amount of hurry. The conductor did his last call as we got onto the train.

I waved at Twilight, who had stayed behind. I shouted, “Goodbye, Twilight. Hope to see you soon.”

“You will,” Twilight shouted back. “Goodbye you two.”

The door shut behind us and before we had found seating the train started to move. There were few ponies in our car. Lyra sat in the window seat and I next to her on our bench. The gentle shaking of the train help sleep find me quickly.

The gentle squeal of the train's breaks woke me. We had made it to Ponyville. Stretching, I shook the sleep from my limbs as we left the train. My nap though had washed away the tiredness of my crash. Only about half of the passengers left with us.

Lyra picked me up with her magic and we headed back to home. Our trip was quick and we made it home in no time. Ponyville as always was filled with smiling ponies, which stood out more after Canterlot's lack of them.

Outside our front door three fillies and a handcart blocked our entrance. Sweetie Belle noticed our approach as Apple Bloom and Scootaloo were busy interrogating Bon Bon. Bon Bon also had noticed our approach, her face lit up with a smile.

“There she is,” Bon Bon said. “Remember though just because I said it was okay doesn't mean Lilac wants to come out with you three. She has had a long week already, and may just want to rest.”

Slipping from Lyra's back I walked over to the group of fillies. I flashed a smile at Sweetie Belle. I said, “I want to go, if its alright.”

Apple Bloom and Scootaloo spun around to face me, their excitement plastered over their faces. Sweetie Belle's excitement was a bit more restrained but still quiet obvious. Apple Bloom said, “We had best get going then. Got lots of stuff planned for tonights meeting, and now we have to squeeze in the initiation ceremony.”

A slight bit of dread creped its way into the back of my head. Initiation. I said, “How far away is the club house? I am not very fast at walking places right now.”

“Don't worry about that,” Scootaloo said proudly. “I am today's ride just hop into the cart and I got the rest.”

“Yeah Scootaloo gives us all rides, all the time,” Apple Bloom said. “Helps her build up her wing strength. Plus it's faster than walking most places.”

I scrambled into the cart, and Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle followed suit. Apple Bloom said, “All ready, Scoots.”

Scootaloo's wings started to beat furiously. After a few seconds she kicked into the ground and started the scooter moving, her wings pushing it forward as well as her back leg. Our momentum grew and we rocketed down the street.

“Be back before dark,” yelled Lyra, who we had left in our dust.

Scootaloo was amazing and the town was soon left behind. We found ourself in the middle of the biggest apple orchard I had ever seen. There must have been thousands of trees. They all seemed to be the same type of apples though it was hard to most of the trees had just started to bloom though. We headed down the road for a while till we happened upon a smaller trail. The trail was just a bit larger the the cart and had ruts in a few places that the cart's wheels fit perfectly into. Our trip had gotten more bumpy and I clung tightly to the cart. Sweetie Belle was very casually doing the same and Apple Bloom seemed to be enjoying our ride the most.

After a few minutes going down the trail, still passing nothing but apple trees as we went, we came upon a tree house built into the largest apple tree I had ever seen. The tree house itself looked ancient though well taken care off, which was impressive knowing what I did of the Cutie Mark Crusaders. There was a hastily made banner that was strung across the door that read Welcome Lilac Splash. The s and h of my name were squished into the corner of the banner. Scootaloo stopped the cart abruptly in front of the ramp that led into the tree house.

“Welcome to the official club house of the Cutie Mark Crusaders,” Sweetie Belle said. She hopped out of the cart.

Scootaloo unhooked her scooter from the cart and started up the ramp leaving her scooter leaning against the tree. Apple Bloom jumped out of the cart and followed up the ramp as well. The three of them left their school bags in the cart.

I stumble out of the cart, Sweetie Belle offering assistance which I took. There was a picnic table near by under the shade of another tree. Sweetie Belle and I headed up the ramp after the other two. Apple Bloom called from within the clubhouse, “You two coming? We have lots to get done today.”

“We are,” Sweetie Belle replied. A tinge of annoyance could be heard in her voice. “No point in rushing, we never get everything done anyway.”

“Doesn't mean we can't try,” Scootaloo said cheerfully as we entered the clubhouse.

The clubhouse was made up of a single room, around six feet by six feet. A single window adorned each wall except for the wall with the door in which a window sat on each side of the door. A few posters decorated the walls, one of which appeared to be a hand drawn one of Rainbow Dash. Otherwise the room was fairly simple and spartan.

Apple Bloom stood at the far end of the room away from the door, with Scootaloo standing to her right. Sweetie Belle hurried up to take a spot to Apple Bloom's left. Apple Bloom cleared her throat and said, “Welcome to the one hundred seventh bimonthly meeting of the Cutie Mark Crusaders.”

“I thought we were on one o eighth meeting,” Scootaloo interjected.

“Pretty certain its one o seven,” Apple Bloom said. “Besides it isn't all that important. Now as I was trying to get at, We welcome you, Lilac Splash, to the ranks of the Cutie Mark Crusaders. Do you promise to uphold our tenements? To leave no task untried till we acquire our Cutie Marks? To tirelessly work for them? And most importantly to come up with new things for us to try each week?”

Doubt crept into my mind, what had I just signed up for? I nervously pawed at the ground for a few seconds. I said quietly, “I will try.”

“Good enough for me,” Scootaloo said. “Fine for you two?”

“I accept your pledge,” Apple Bloom stated joyously.

“Great, we are all in agreement,” stated Sweetie Belle. “So what is first on our agenda?”

“Well, I was hoping to get Cutie Mark Crusader Mathematicians out of the way first. Do the boring one first,” Scootaloo said dryly.

“Sounds good to me,” Apple Bloom said. She walked over to the dresser and extracted a set of parchment and ink for us to work with. “Lilac, your the best at this why don't you lead us in this one. What sort of things do Mathematicians do? I mean besides math.”

I stifled a small giggle. I could not see how this would work, the idea of any of these three being mathematicians was hilarious. I stated, containing my mirth, “I don't really know. I know they solve hard math problems, like Calculus, but besides that I don't know. I think most of them are teachers.”

“We already tried Cutie Mark Crusader Teachers,” Sweetie Belle said. “That one didn't go so well. So maybe we should focus on the hard math problems.”

“Um, okay,” I said. Nothing came to mind as I sat stewing over what was a hard math problem. After a few moments I accepted defeat. “Maybe this isn't such a good idea, I can't think of any hard math problems. Without a paper right in front of me with all the problems laid out I don't think this is going to go anywhere.”

“Well hey, at least we have eliminated the boring stuff,” Scootaloo said cheerfully. “What other things are you good at Lilac? Maybe those will be less boring.”

Ignoring Scootaloo's unintentional insult, I thought for a while. I said, “I really like to draw and allot of ponies have said I am good at it.”

“We tried artist once before, but I guess seeing as your new we could try again,” Apple Bloom said. She returned to the dresser and grabbed more paper and some crayons. She handed a set of paper to each of us. “We should all do requests just like real artists. So what do you want me to draw for you, Lilac?”

“How about your family, or your house? Also you guys only ever try something once?” I asked bemused.

“Well how else are you supposed to find out what your good at if you don't try everything?” Scootaloo said mater of factually. “So what do you want Apple Bloom?”

“Why don't you draw your family? Or maybe what you think we should try next?” Apple Bloom stated. She had pulled out a few crayons and had started work on her picture. Her picture was fairly crude but she had a bit of talent.

“What do you want?” Sweetie Belle asked of Scootaloo. She had grabbed some crayons with her hooves.

“Ooo, you should draw one of Rainbow Dash and I being awesome,” Scootaloo stated. Her picture seemed somewhat abstract and I couldn't tell what it was meant to be.

I grabbed the quill and ink Apple Bloom had provided earlier and a piece of the parchment. I asked quietly, “Sweetie Belle, what should I draw for you?”

“How about your family as well?” Sweetie Belle said, looking up from her drawing. She was drawing with her hooves, which she seemed fairly practiced with. Why not magic crossed my mind.

I nodded my head and got to work. In the center of my piece of paper I drew myself, which was a fairly quick and rough sketch. To the right of that I drew in turn Lyra, Bon Bon and Twilight standing together as a group. Lyra and Bon Bon, were hugging, while Twilight sat surrounded by books reading one of them. To my left I drew what I though Melody would have looked like as a pony. My heart ached, missing her, but the pain had seemed to dull.

Engrossed into my work, I had not noticed that the other three fillies had filed in around me, watching me work. I decided it was done and looked up at the three of them, noticing them for the first time.

“Wow,” Sweetie Belle said in a hushed tone. “Your really good at that.”

“Who is that pony?” Apple Bloom asked as she pointed to Melody.

“Can you draw Rainbow Dash for me?” asked Scootaloo. Excitement tainting her voice.

“Thank you, Sweetie Belle. That is Melody, someone who was very special to me, Apple Bloom. I guess I could, Scootaloo,” I answered. Guilt and pain tainted my voice and my mind. A tear ran down my cheek the only bit of my pain that slipped from my grasp in front the other girls. “Do you want it in color?”

“That would be awesome, if you could,” Scootaloo stated. She seemed oblivious to my tear and rushed off to grab me more parchment.

Sweetie Belle embraced me in a hug. Sadness swirled in Sweetie Belle's eyes. She whispered, “I am sorry.”

Apple Bloom patted me on the side. Her eyes were filled with sadness as well, though deeper than Sweetie Belle's had. Apple Bloom said, “I am sorry as well. I know how it feels to loose somepony.”

“Thank you both,” I whispered. I wiped the tear from my eye. Sweetie Belle released me from her hug.

Scootaloo handed me a much larger piece of parchment and had gathered a few of the crayons, all colors I would need to draw Rainbow Dash. I said, “This might take a bit of time.”

The other three just watched as I worked. I first sketched an outline and colored in afterwards. The picture was primarily of Rainbow Dash's face. Scootaloo was ecstatic about it though Apple Bloom and Sweetie Belle were much more interested in the process than in the picture. Some ten minutes later I had finished to my satisfaction. The picture went up right next to the other poster.

“So now what?” I asked, after handing over the picture to Scootaloo.

“We need to make plans for this weekend. We normally don't get too much done in our weekday meetings,” Apple Bloom explained. “So do any of you have family plans this weekend? Applejack wants to plant a new section of the orchard on Saturday so I will be busy but we can do something on Sunday.”

“I don't think I have any plans, but I need to ask first,” I stated quietly.

“Rarity is going to Canterlot this weekend, and our parents are still on their trip. So I will be at Fluttershy's all weekend, which means I should be free to come on Sunday. Fluttershy is so nice about that,” Sweetie Belle exclaimed.

“My parents won't mind as long as I tell them tonight,” Scootaloo stated. She had returned from tacking the picture up. “So what's the plan for Sunday?”

“Well I've been planing for another attempt at Cutie Mark Crusader Jungle Adventurers. Seeing as last time we got foalknapped I don't think that one counts as a full attempt,” Apple Bloom said. She scratched at the floor with her hoof. “Also I heard Applejack saying that the Timberwolves are on the move so we shouldn't have to worry about them if we wanted to go out into the Everfree.”

“We were going for Zoologist not Jungle Adventurers,” Sweetie Belle stated. Annoyance filled her voice. “Are you certain about the Timberwolves?”

“Applejack never lies,” Apple Bloom stated defensively. “If she says they have moved on then they have.”

“We could all meet up at Fluttershy's cabin,” Scootaloo exclaimed. “Then go talk to Zecora. I bet she knows all sorts of things about exploring jungles.”

“Okay so what sort of supplies do we need?” Sweetie Belle asked. “Probably should pack a lunch and water but what else?”

“We'll need a rope, which I can cover and definitely should bring the cart just in case we need to carry one of us back out,” Apple Bloom said.

“Well then I will bring my first aid kit,” Scootaloo said. “Though I hope we don't need more practice as CMC EMT. Not that we plan on that one very often. Still probably our most useful failure.”

“I don't know if Nurse Redheart would agree with you on that one,” Sweetie Belle said.

Dread had crept into my head, what had I signed up for? I stammered, “How often do you end up hurt?”

“Not all that often but we have found out that anything that involves going outside our front doors is a good reason to bring the first aid kit,” Apple Bloom stated proudly. “Besides this trip won't involve fire so our chances of getting hurt is pretty low.”

“That's a relief,” I stated sarcastically. Maybe I could come up with an excuse not to come on Sunday.

“Also when there is four of us we seem much more likely to not get into as much trouble,” Sweetie Belle said. “It's safer with more ponies.”

Crap. Now I had to go. I didn't want to be responsible for them getting hurt because I didn't go. I asked, “What should I bring with? Also how far into the forest would we be going? I get tired really easily.”

“Don't worry if you get too tried you can always ride in the cart,” Scootaloo said. “You look like you weigh less than Sweetie Belle, and she sometimes has to ride in the cart after a long day so I can handle it.”

“Hey,” exclaimed Sweetie Belle. “I don't weigh that much.”

“Sorry,” Scootaloo stated quietly. “I didn't mean to imply that you were too heavy, just that Lilac is the smallest of us all. By a decent bit if you ask me.”

“Well she is three years younger than us,” Apple Bloom said. “You should bring your saddle bag, and food of course. Maybe you can ask Bon Bon to pack some extra candies. She makes the best candies.”

“I will ask,” I said.

“Speaking of food maybe we should go and check in with Applejack,” Apple Bloom said. “I bet Granny Smith has diner done or near so by now.”

“That sounds good to me,” Scootaloo said hungrily. She headed out the door.

Sweetie Belle followed suit. She said, “Then we can work on our homework.”

“Thanks for reminding me,” Scootaloo annoyedly said. “I was hoping that you had forgotten.”

Apple Bloom headed out the door leaving our drawing mess on the floor. She looked back at me from the door, I had not moved yet. Apple Bloom asked, “You coming, Lilac?”

I nodded and hurried after them. Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo had grabbed their bags out of the cart and were waiting for us. Apple Bloom grabbed her bag as well and headed off into the orchard, following another less worn path. A large red barn came into view after about five minutes. I had fallen behind and the crusaders stood waiting for me at the barn. Pinkie Pie's face had been painted onto the side of the barn. A few dozen feet from the barn there was a large two story house. The apple green house had a very welcoming feel to it. A large red stallion was busy chopping wood. He had golden blonde mane and tail and wore some sort of yolk on his shoulders.

“Good afternoon, Big Mac,” Apple Bloom shouted.

“Yup,” shouted Big Mac, between blows of his axe. He had a particularly gnarled piece of wood that he split with one blow causing a loud crack to echo through the area.

“If Big Mac is chopping the wood then it must be later than I thought,” Apple Bloom stated.

She pushed her way into the house through what seemed to be a back door. The rest of us filled in after her as she held the door open for us. The door lead into a kitchen. An ancient pale green mare sat at the table in the kitchen. She must have been much older than the librarian at the castle. A large stew pot steamed on top of the stove. The table that the ancient mare sat at had seating for eight and looked like it could have been older than the mare sitting at it. Much of the rest of the kitchen was fairly typical though quiet warm and welcoming.

“Hello, young whipper snappers,” the ancient mare said as we entered the kitchen. “Who is your new friend there, Apple Bloom?”

“Afternoon, Granny Smith. This is Lilac Splash. She is Lyra's daughter,” Apple Bloom said. A tinge of annoyance floated in her voice, and she gently rasped her front hooves on the ground. “Remember I told you about her yesterday.”

“I remember,” Granny Smith stated. “Diner will be done in twenty or so minutes. Why don't you four work on your homework, alright?”

In unison the three crusaders said, “Yes.”

Sweetie Belle was by far the most happy about doing her homework. They had a sheet of math problems which I helped Apple Bloom and Scootaloo with. The problems where mostly simple division. The humor of our situation had not been lost on Granny Smith and she giggled when I started to teach the other three how to do their math work. We finished just before the stew was done and Granny Smith had all of us, except Apple Bloom, help set up the table for diner. Apple Bloom was sent to retrieve Big Mac and Applejack.

Apple Bloom returned shortly after she had left, Big Mac and Applejack in tow. The two older ponies washed up in the kitchen sink. After drying his hooves, Big Mac carried the pot over to the table.

“Howdy,” Applejack said, as she dried her hooves off on a towel. “How went your meeting?”

“It was fun,” Apple Bloom stated. “We made plans for Sunday.”

“Well, thank you for remembering you already had ones for Saturday,” Applejack replied. “How about the rest of you, did you lot have fun as well?”

“Of course,” Scootaloo said energetically.

“It was a productive meeting,” Sweetie Belle said.

“I enjoyed it,” I said quietly.

Apple Bloom sat down next to me with Sweetie Belle on my other side. Big mac dished each of us a large ladle full of the thick vegetable and potato stew. The oregano and basil stood out amongst the herbs and filled the room with a delicious smell. No one started eating yet.

After everypony had been served, Granny Smith said, “Thank you, Princess Celestia for bringing the sun that feeds our crops. So that we may partake in the lands bounty year in and year out. Thank you Luna for bringing the moon that leads the seasons and tides making life possible. Bless our food. Amen.”

“Amen,” chanted most of the table.

Apple Bloom tore into her stew, as if she had not eaten all day. Scootaloo had done the same while both Sweetie Belle and myself were much more reserved. Big Mac ate heartily as well and Applejack was some where in between. I got half way through my bowl when my stomach started to complain. I tried to slowly shovel the rest in but my efforts slowed considerably.

“You don't have to eat it all,” Applejack stated. She was serving Apple Bloom and Scootaloo a second helping. “Do you want seconds, Sweetie Belle?”

“No thank you,” Sweetie Belle replied. She scooped the last bit of her stew from her bowl and slurped it from her spoon. “The stew is very good today, Granny Smith.”

“Yeah very good,” Scootaloo stated between bites.

“Thank you kindly,” Granny Smith said.

“Are you done with your's, Lilac?” Applejack asked politely. “If you are, I'll finish your bowl.”

I nodded and handed her my bowl. I said quietly, “It was really good. Thank you. Sorry, I can't eat all that much at a time anymore.”

“Why not?” Apple Bloom asked her mouth still full of stew.

“Mind your manners, Apple Bloom,” Applejack said sternly. “Lilac has gone through some stressful couple of weeks recently. It's only natural that it would affect her appetite.”

Big Mac was working on bowl number three. He chirped, “Yeup.”

“Besides, I think you and Scootaloo are getting ready for a growth spurt. You both are eating an awful lot more as of recent,” Applejack stated. She sprinkled some hot sauce onto the remnants of my meal.

“That's what my dad said,” Scootaloo stated.

I took a drink from my cup for the first time. The sweet apple juice was by far the best I had ever had. I kept the juice in my mouth for a bit longer than necessary enjoying its taste. I said, “This is really good apple juice.”

“Of course it is,” Applejack said. “I wouldn't stand for anything less. Not from Sweet Apple Arces.”

“Well, thank you for diner,” I replied

“Was our pleasure,” Applejack stated cheerfully. “I hope you save some room for dessert though. Can't have a diner with the Apple Family without a slice of apple pie.”

“I hope I did too,” I stated. If the pie was as good as the juice, it would be to die for.

Applejack chuckled softly. She went back to polishing off my bowl, before she grabbed a second bowl for herself. I sat, watching the group eat. Apple Bloom finished her second bowl quickly and then downed her cup of juice. Scootaloo followed suit and soon all four of us fillies were done eating.

“Can we be excused?” Apple Bloom asked.

“As long as you lot take your bowls to the sink, yes,” Applejack said.

I gathered all four bowls in my magic and lofted them over to the sink. The effort was a bit taxing and I had to keep my vision firmly planted on the bowls but they all made it gently to the side of the sink. I said, “I don't know how deep the sink is or I would put them there directly.”

Sweetie Belle wore shock across her face and both Apple Bloom and Scootaloo had excitement dancing in their eyes. My eyes quickly darted towards the adults. Granny Smith was still staring intently at her bowl, seemingly oblivious. The stoic features of Big Mac's face showed little emotion, but in his eyes the slightest hints of something could be seen, I couldn't tell what he was thinking though. Applejack on the other hand had a warm smile plastered over her face, and her eyes were, unlike most of our group, were firmly planted on my.

“You are definitely your mother's daughter,” Applejack stated warmly.

“Wow,” Scootaloo said excitedly. “What other things can you do with your magic? Can you cast real spells?”

“Why are you so good at that?” Apple Bloom asked.

“Now you two don't get any ideas,” Applejack commanded. “I don't want you three pressuring Lilac into trying any spells, okay.”

“Okay,” Apple Bloom said. Scootaloo nodded in acceptance as well.

Sweetie Belle was staring at the far wall away from the sink. A small shiver ran over her body. I touched her and she jumped slightly in her chair. I asked, “What's the matter, Sweetie Belle?”

“Nothing,” Sweetie Belle said. Melancholy filled her voice and her shaking had not subsided. “I'm fine. It's fine. It's amazing that your so good at your magic being three years younger.”

She turned her face and a fake smile covered it. An awkward silence fell over the table.

Applejack stated, “Why don't you four go finish your homework out in the living room, while I clean up the rest of the way and get the pie ready.”

“Okay,” Sweetie Belle stated. She jumped from her chair and grabbed her bag which was laid underneath it.

Apple Bloom and Scootaloo dragged their feet while doing the same. After a few moments we had gathered in the living room. One wall was dominated by a large fireplace, in front of which an old well worn rocking chair sat. On the mantle of the fireplace a lone picture sat. What must have been a young Applejack and Big Mac sat with large black stallion and a petite beige mare. The mare looked pregnant. All four of them had large smiles on their faces.

A number of large paintings decorated the rest of the walls, all seemed to be done by the same artist. A piano stood next to the front door, a thin layer of dust covered it. A coffee table took up much of the middle of the room and a couch sat next to it against a wall.

Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo dragged out their homework and started work on it, on the coffee table. Their math homework having been finished they started work on some spelling work. I proved less useful in helping this time and mostly just watched. The language transfer spell was amazing, it must have transferred the casters knowledge, for several of the words in the homework I couldn't remember ever using but I knew them and could spell them. After a little while Granny Smith came out and sat down in the rocking chair. Big Mac followed shortly there after with a load of freshly cut wood which he stacked next to the fire place.

Applejack entered the room and sat down on the couch behind us. She said, “Pie should be done in ten or so minutes. How goes the homework?”

“We are a bit ahead for the week,” Apple Bloom said. “Thanks to Lilac, we got all of our math done today. Ms Cheerilee only want us to get half of it done by tomorrow. So we are working on our spelling homework so we won't have any homework to do this weekend.”

“That's mighty practical of you,” Applejack said. “Did you thank Lilac for her help?”

“Thank you, Lilac,” Apple Bloom stated.

“Yeah thanks,” Scootaloo said. “Save us allot of time.”

“Thank you,” Sweetie Belle said.

“I didn't help you all that much, Sweetie Belle,” I stated. “I really only helped Apple Bloom and Scootaloo.”

“Yeah but that way I could focus. Normally I have to help them with math, and thanks to you I didn't,” Sweetie Belle explained. Her smile looked genuine again. “Besides I think you did a better job than I normally do.”

The next ten minutes went by slowly and quietly, the silence only interrupted by Scootaloo spelling out words out loud. Thankfully before too long an egg timer went off in the kitchen and Applejack tended to the pie. The sweet aroma of fresh apple pie wafted into the room. The aroma alone made my mouth water.

A few agonizing minutes later Applejack poked her head out the kitchen door. She said, “Pie's ready.”

Despite my best efforts the other three fillies beat me to the table. So much so that only Sweetie Belle was not already in her seat. Applejack waited till I had taken my seat to dish out any of the pie. She gave each of us, starting with me, a small slice of the pie. She dished herself a similar sized piece and sat down with us.

Heaven. Simply heaven. The pie was perfection. For a moment with each bite all of the rest of the world disappeared and only the joy of that bite existed. Sadly the pie was not infinite though my stomach was satisfied with the last bite. Not wanting to ruin the night with some perfection induced vomiting, I declined on a second piece.

The warmth of the pie spread through out me and I could feel sleep slowly taking control of my mind. I fought against it, mostly futilely.

“Big Mac, will you make sure Scootaloo and Sweetie Belle leave on time? I am going to walk Lilac home, she is a bit tired,” Applejack said from the kitchen door.

“Yep,” Big Mac replied from the living room.

I followed Applejack out the back door and around the house. The sunset sent streaks of orange and red through out the evening sky which clashed with the dark forms of the nearby trees. I tried to keep up with Applejack but she out paced me thoroughly and ended up having to stop ever so often for me to catch up. By the time we had reached town my legs were burning and I had stumbled and fell a few times. The sun had completely set and bright moon illuminated our world. Applejack carried me the rest of the way home. Sleep found me some where on the way.

Author's Note:

Author's Note: It feels nice to be back in Ponyville. This chapter feels right again. I hope that the CMC's little planing meeting wasn't too drab. I have another ten or so chapters planned right now though I know a few extra will pop into that list. Also longest day in my chapters ever yet, two and then some chapters.

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