• Published 17th Nov 2014
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You Are Normal Too - Never2muchpinkie



When mother and daughter get into a fight over a misunderstanding their reconciliation leads to the reveal of Dinky's father, a cruel stallion who broke Derpy's heart. Can Derpy put her past regrets behind to find love and romance in the present?

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Chapter 14: Unorthodox apology

As she got close to him she felt a curious sense of déjà vu, like she had been here before in this exact same situation. Her mind felt hazy as her feelings from the past took center stage. ‘I can’t believe it,’ she thought. ‘This feels just like a dream.’ She felt something was off. ‘A… dream.’

Like a bolt of lightning three images flashed through her mind: a heartbroken looking Doctor Hooves, a furious and disappointed Dinky, and a cocky, smug Shooting Star.

Her thoughts cleared and all she saw was Shooting Star about to kiss her. “NO!” she yelled, shoving him away. She put her hoof to her neck, feeling the ring as she panted, freaked out at how close she had just come to cheating on her future husband.

She suddenly realized where her sense of familiarity was coming from: things had been shaping up just like the nightmare she’d had shortly before her six month anniversary with Doctor Hooves. The apologetic Shooting Star, giving her a check for a lot of money as repayment, talking her into loving him again. As soon as she gave in she had lost everything. The Doctor was disheartened and sad to see his mare kissing another stallion, Dinky was angry at her for breaking his heart, and Shooting revealed he was only playing her once again.

She shook her head, forcing herself to focus as the last of her romantic feelings drifted away. “NO!” she yelled again. “I’m not doing it! I’m not playing your game so you can just mock me again.”

He let out a derisive laugh. “So you grew a brain in that head of yours, after all. Honestly! For a second I thought I had you. I was about to pull away myself just before you did. It would have been funny to see that you haven’t changed a bit. It’s so easy to pull the wool over your eyes. Nice to see I can still play like you like a fiddle when I want to.”

“I’m NOT the same mare I was back then. I’m not going to spend years mourning over you. I have a fantastic stallion that is better than you could ever be. I just got caught up for a minute in nostalgia and I let my guard down.”

He got a smug look on his face. “Heh! And isn’t that exactly why you wound up in this situation in the first place?”

“You’re right! It is! But I learned from the past. I stopped myself this time from making a big mistake.”

“Whoop-de-doo.” He clapped his hooves sarcastically. “It only took you how many years to learn not to be stupid, and you were about to throw that all away? I wonder what your stallion would think if he saw what you were about to do. It wouldn’t be difficult to figure out who he is. Maybe the two of us should go have a nice chat so I can-”

Derpy slapped him hard across the face, making him recoil. “Shut your mouth! I told you I’m not that same crybaby coward I was back then. I’m not scared of you anymore. If you try to take me down I’ll make sure you’re coming with me! All it would take is a public announcement of what you did and your reputation would come crumbling down. No matter what you tried you can’t lie with a blood test. I’m sure all those fans that look up to you as their hero would run far away from you for abandoning the mare you impregnated.”

Shooting rubbed his face, looking annoyed. “Well, look at you. Openly trying to blackmail me and assaulting me. I see you really have grown some backbone over the years.” Adopting his arrogant look again he said, “Your daughter must be so proud of you. Mother of the year right here!”

Derpy saw red. She ran over to him, shoving him up against a locker, raising her hoof. “Don’t you EVER-how dare-jerk-monster-”

“Come on, then,” he said cockily. “Hit me again. I know you want to. Erase me from this world. Add murder to the list of crimes you’ve committed today. I’m sure your daughter will be happy to visit you in prison. Hey! Maybe you can even have your wedding in there too.”

Derpy was panting hard. She wanted to sock him until he stopped moving. She wanted to do something to get rid of that conceited sense of self-superiority he walked around with. Her body was tense as a guitar string, her body shaking.

For a while they stared at each other. Derpy finally grabbed him and flung him to the ground before punching the locker as hard as she could over and over, screaming through each hit until she burned out some of her rage.

Because of the thickness of her hoof it didn’t hurt at all, but the heavy impacts reverberated up her leg, making it feel sore.

Rounding on him she yelled, “I HATE YOU! You’re the worst! I can’t believe I ever thought you could be different. I had hoped so much you might someday return, ready to start over, but I know for certain now that it was just a fantasy of a stupid little girl. I better not ever see you again, or I’ll pound you into the dirt! Got it?”

Shooting got up, sitting on the bench and casually putting his hooves behind his head. “It was YOU who came to see me, remember? I think those words would best be saved for yourself, don’t you think?

“Well, hey, good luck if you have another kid with this new guy. Hopefully he won’t chuck you away too. Of course she won’t turn out as awesome as the first kid. After all, if he’s marrying you he’s clearly desperate and couldn’t find anyone better. And, hey, nothing plus nothing equals nothing, so I feel bad for the next thing that comes from your loins.”

“ARGH!” Derpy yelled in frustration, storming out of the room, mumbling curses under her breath the whole way, not even seeing the mare she passed by as she left.

Once Derpy left Shooting let out a big sigh, his conceited look giving way to a frown as he stood up. “Well… it’s done,” he said quietly. He slowly plodded out the locker room. “Ahhh!” He let out a scream as his body went flying into the air. He landed with an impact that knocked the breath out of him.

“Well, well, well,” said a female voice. “Today has been an interesting day. I learned something new about you.”

Shooting Star opened his eye, gasping in oxygen as he saw who it was. “Dream Catcher, I-AGH!” He cried out in pain as she twisted his leg.

“Huuush,” she said in a gentle tone that belied the look on her face. “Unless you want that leg to come off. You do remember when you thought I was just a joke and you missed a few games because I gave you a bad sprain, don’t you?”

“Y-yes,” he said meekly to his marefriend.

Dream Catcher was an earth pony with a white coat and a mix of light blue and light pink mane that ended in a ponytail. “I learned something big about you today, didn’t I? You went and fathered a kid, then dumped her with all the responsibility of raising it.” She ran a hoof slowly up his stomach toward his face. “To be honest that doesn’t surprise me a bit, given the hopeless dimwit you were when I first met you. That sounds just like the stallion you were years ago.

“I come over, curious as to why you’re going somewhere private with what I thought was a random fan, and this is what I have to hear. I am not pleased by this. While it doesn’t surprise me that you did that a long time ago, I really didn’t expect this of you in the current time.”

Shooting Star felt afraid as she ran her hoof in small circles over his chest. Her face looked calm now along with her words, but he knew she was angry.

“Now, I thought I taught you a long time ago that the power you kept trying to throw around was just an illusion. You thought that money would always be there to solve your problems, but it isn’t going to save you now, is it?”

“Dream Catcher, I-OW!”

She twisted his leg again. “It isn’t your turn to speak, DEAR!

“There is nothing you can do to save yourself with money or influence. From what I heard you got reunited with someone you took advantage of in the past, and having her come before you again it gave you the urge to hurt her again because you felt she was weaker than you. I’m truly disappointed in you. However, I am not a monster. I didn’t hear everything you were saying, so I’ll give you one chance to give your side of the story.

“I’m going to give you one minute to give me a good reason not to do what she didn’t want to and cause you pain. Maybe that will remind you just how weak and powerless you really are compared to me. After all, our fathers pushed us together because he saw how big your head was and he wanted me to teach you how a proper pony acts, regardless of wealth and circumstances. I thought I made a lot of progress with you, but this ghost of the past seems to have reignited the arrogant side of you.”

Shooting tried to pull his leg out of her grip, but he only got another painful twist for his efforts.

“Oh, no, no, no,” Dream Catcher said. “This leg is mine until you give me a good reason why I shouldn’t break it right now.” As she saw his horn glow she slapped it, disrupting his concentration. “Don’t even think of using magic. That will only make things worse for you in the end.

“So now… what made you think your behavior was a good idea? This was the perfect chance to make amends for the past. I would have expected you would apologize for your behavior and attempt to get to know your own child. However, you treated her poorly and aggravated her, pushing her away.”

“That WAS my apology!”

“Oh, really?” she said with sarcastic wonder. “WOW! That was some apology. Next thing I know you’ll beat her up too. Really get that apology across. You’ve got thirty seconds now to make a good argument, because the urge to remind you that you’re a small, inferior creature is becoming overpowering.”

“You said that you didn’t hear everything, so did you miss the part where she said she was getting married?”

She eased up the pressure on his leg. “Married, hmm?”

“Yes. I assumed she only came here to tell me off for what I did to her. Through our conversation she was very hostile and angry, hitting me and yelling at me. It was exactly what I was expecting. As she heard me taking responsibility for it she began cooling off. I gave her a check for a lot of money to help her get through things, and then I did give her an honest apology. However… things got complicated right after that.”

“Complicated how?”

“I called her by my pet name for her, and her attitude completely shifted. Now she was acting like she was as a teenager when she was in love with me. I saw that she still had some feelings for me, and I knew the only thing I could do was to ruin those feelings. She’s about to start a new life. I simply didn’t want her to still live in the past. I made her think I was still the same guy so she can have peace as she moves on.”

Dream Catcher stared down at him for a while.

He didn’t avoid her gaze and eventually she released him and he got up, wincing at the pain in his leg. He had gotten a lot of abuse today. He pointed his head, saying, “Come on. Let’s walk a bit.”

“Sure, but I’m still not satisfied with your answer.”

As they walked out towards the stadium Shooting said, “So what do you think would be the correct thing to do?”

“Well, not to make a total mule of yourself, obviously.”

“No… this is right.”

Her eyebrow went up. “Is that so?”

Heading out to the stands he rested his top half on the bars. “Life is complicated. I was good to her, having a good conversation where I thought she was just going to tell me off and leave. I never would have imagined she would still love me. Honestly, I think it was a surprise to her as well.

“Should I have gone ahead and tried to encourage that spark, in effect causing her to cheat on the stallion she loves? Should I have cheated on you too?”

Dream Catcher followed along, resting her front half on the bars and looking out over the field. “Well, I can’t say I would want her to cheat on her future husband. That would certainly not be the best way to kick things off. However, don’t act like you couldn’t talk with her without wooing her.”

A profound sadness came to his face. “She saw something in me when I played the part of the model coltfriend to earn her trust. Even after I revealed my true colors and told her she meant nothing to me she still had some lingering feelings. She even said it to me directly that she hoped I would one day return to her.

“I don’t get it. Why would she still love me after the way I toyed with her heart?”

“So… how do you feel about her now?” she asked, a note of curiosity in her voice.

“Does it matter? She’s taken. She’s not a threat to you.”

“That’s not what I mean, and you know that.” She turned to look at him. “Assuming for a second both of you were single…” She blinked, her head tilting. “Hmm? Are you…”

A tear came down his cheek. “She was kind and gentle and had a great sense of humor. She was a breath of fresh air in a world of high class snobs. Until I met you all I knew were mares that were interested in money. Just a bunch of gold-diggers. She cared about me for who I was. She supported me by coming to all my games even though she cared nothing for hoofball. She always prepared me homemade lunches even though I could buy them myself. She was very dedicated to me, but all I really wanted in the end was a break from the tedium and the chance to have her body.”

He buried his head in his hooves. “I can’t believe how much of a dirtbag I was back then.” He slammed his hoof into the bar, shaking a little. As he emerged more tears came down his face. “It’s too late now. I had my chance, and she’s given her heart to another. It’s not surprising. I’ve had more than enough time to right that wrong, and I kept avoiding it because I didn’t want to face myself or my actions. I wanted to pretend it never happened, so I just kept lying to myself. She even gave me a second chance, sending me some photos of the child we beared. I sent them back unopened, because it gave me less of a reason to see her if I didn’t know what she looked like. Even today she showed that she was ready to give me another chance. And that’s why I had to break her heart again.

“I don’t know who this guy is that she’s going to marry, but he’s clearly the best candidate for her. He was dedicated enough to work through all the garbage I left behind in her soul to win her heart. He’ll love her right and treat her the way she should be treated and give my child the dad she needs. I truly believe that.

“Even if Derpy was willing to leave him for me and I was willing to leave you for her things would never work out between us. Besides breaking the heart of the guy who she was supposed to marry she would never trust me. A part of her would always wonder how honest or real I’m being with her no matter how much heart and soul I put into it.

“In other words, me being in her life is only going to cause her more heartache and pain no matter what I do or don’t do. So that’s my apology to her: to make her hate me so she doesn’t have any regrets about staying with this guy. It’s nothing less than I deserve after what I did to her.

“It’s too bad that things couldn’t have worked out between us, but maybe now she can forget about me. I guess my main regret now is that I never opened those pictures. I know I don’t deserve a mare like Derpy now, but I’ll always wonder what my daughter looks like. Hopefully now with the money I gave her she’ll never want for anything.”

Dream Catcher’s eye’s finally softened. She had never heard him in such pain. She had never seen him cry either. It was a day of new firsts for him. She began to rub his back, saying in a gentle tone, “That was a very noble thing you did.”

He shrugged. “It wouldn’t have to be that way if I had only learned these lessons earlier.”

“Ah, but this is what life is all about. We often only learn the important things when it’s too late, our mistakes helping to shape us into our best selves as we learn from them and overcome them.

“I’m sorry that things didn’t work out between the two of you, but it takes a lot of courage to realize it’s not safe to be in your child’s life. It’s one of the hardest things for any parent. Self-sacrifice for the sake of your child is the very essence of kindness and love for them. Going by what you said I understand now why you don’t want her to be around you.

“It’s a shame that you won’t be able to meet your daughter, but, well, it’s not too late to try again. Now that you’ve proven to me that you’ve really grown up I think the next time you ask me I’ll say yes.”

His head spun, looking towards her. “Y-yeah?”

She gave him a tender smile, nodding.

He gave her a teary smile back, pushing off the railing and heading back to the ground. “Well, I don’t have my ring with me at the moment, but I think now is as good a time as any.” Kneeling down he bowed to her, saying, “Will you marry me, Dream Catcher?”

“Yes. Yes, I will.”

He threw his hooves around her, saying, “Thank you! That makes me so happy.” Releasing her he said, “I think this calls for a celebration. My treat.”

“I think for now I’d just like to be alone here with you.” She sat down in a seat, patting the one next to her.

He quickly sat down, giving her a kiss.

She giggled. “Oh, you’re impossible. Nagging at me over and over, hoping that if you simply asked enough I would give in and marry you. I told you, didn’t I, that I wasn’t going to do it until you proved yourself to me?”

Kissing him back she continued, “After we get married I think you’ll finally get your second chance to do things right. I think it would be nice to see a little me running around. I can’t be the only one without a kid.”

“I’d be happy to deliver.”

She gave a derisive laugh. “Oh, please! With your weak disposition I’m sure you’d pass out at the sight of a birth.”

“You know that’s not what I meant.”

“I know, but I couldn’t resist messing with you.”

The two of them held hooves, kissing each other as they began to think of their future.

***

Derpy got off the train back to Ponyville. “What a day,” she said with a sigh. “It was a total disaster, but at least I got what I wanted. I spoke my mind, and that’s the most important thing. I nearly slipped up, but I managed to recover on time.”

As she walked home her thoughts returned once again to the check sitting in her saddlebag. She so wanted to rip it into a million pieces. She didn’t want his help for anything, especially not to help finance her wedding. But, once again, her counterargument wouldn’t let her do it. If there was some kind of emergency and Dinky or her were seriously injured that money would be invaluable. Angry or prideful she wasn’t going to put her daughter’s well-being at risk.

She felt in a daze again, barely paying attention to where she walked. “Home, sweet home,” she said gratefully as she arrived.

As she put her hoof on the door she flinched as she heard something break inside the house and the voice of an angry Doctor.

“Dinky! Get back here this instant!”

“Come and get me!” she replied.

“You are so finished when I catch you.”

“I can’t wait to show EVERYONE in town!”

There was another bang, and Derpy quickly opened the door to see what was going on.

“You little brat!” he yelled. “Give me that photo!”

“No way!”

Out of the kitchen the pair came, the both of them pausing as they saw her standing there.

Derpy’s mouth was hanging open as she took in his appearance. His mane was styled up with hairbows, and his hooves were painted red.

“Uhhhh,” both Derpy and Doctor Hooves said at the same time as they saw each other.

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