• Published 31st Jan 2015
  • 4,086 Views, 179 Comments

The Other Sunset Shimmer - Jerec the Ascendant

The story is that the EG Sunset Shimmer is pushed into Equestria by Pony Sunset Shimmer who replaces her. On Hiatus due to popular demand.

  • ...

Swift Flight

"Well, hi there. I’m Swift Flight."

Sunset swallowed hard. This was her first encounter with a pony that hadn’t been introduced by Princess Celestia. Sure, he was really young, and likely wasn't going to care much about social protocol, but navigating a conversation unaided by the Princess was still daunting. Sunset’s tongue stalled as she thought through her history lessons, trying to figure out how to talk to this pegasus. She understood that it wasn't as easy to pick up on now as it was in the times of Clover the Clever, but the prejudices were still there, and she wasn’t sure how she was expected to speak.

Earth ponies, for instance, are still more likely to occupy themselves in grunt work. Farming and hard labor - Sunset remembered learning about rock farms. She still had no idea what to think of that: were they just carving rocks, or did they literally care for and grow rocks? Pegasi make up more of the middle class in social status; they provide weather and can fly, but their talents also suit them for some even harder labor. Finally there are the unicorns, like herself, who make up the upper class. They’re often found in positions of noble stature or high in the command structure of the military. Sunset could only think of one or two earth ponies she’d seen so far - most of the ponies around her were unicorns.

However, with magic comes a stigma, one that not even Celestia herself can avoid being labeled with. Those who can use magic whether effortlessly or otherwise are considered dangerous by some, and are even feared. Sunset had noticed in the cafeteria that ponies tend to sit further from her and watch closely, just in case they need to dodge a suddenly airborne object. But there were ponies, she learned in class, that were afraid of the magic that fully capable ponies like Celestia had. Unicorns aren’t trusted.

With all this on her mind, Sunset untied her tongue and introduced herself to the waiting pegasus. "Nice to meet you, Swift Flight. I'm Sunset Shimmer." She didn’t trip over any words, but her cheeks still flushed. She was terrified of what might happen if this interaction turned sour. How extreme did the prejudice against her new body and power go?

She glanced over at him in time to see him brush his dark blue mane out of his eyes. Her heart fluttered slightly, and suddenly she was staring starry-eyed at the little colt. She considered the implications of cuddling his cute little face; their difference in age, gender, and the fact that they are both technically nude told her to abstain.

The more she watched him, the more Swift Flight seemed familiar. Something in her told her she'd seen him somewhere before, or at least a human like him. Suddenly she remembered the whole parallel universe thing. She was already accustomed to seeing her principal in pony form, and the ponies that worked at the hospital didn’t feel familiar at all. But just the other day she'd recognized some students from her old school, in the forms of a mint green unicorn mare, a dark grey earth pony with black hair, and a white unicorn stallion with blue hair.

"So, why are you here?" Swift Flight asked, turning back to her.

Sunset’s eyes grew wide and her cheeks blushed again as she quickly stopped staring. "I'm...well..."

She started gazing off. Should she tell him the truth? Or should she just make up a story? She didn’t want to lie to a potential friend, but all the ponies she’d met so far had been ordered by Celestia not to tell anyone else.

She kept her eyes on her bed sheet and responded, "I'm here by Princess Celestia's request. She's having me go through a prolonged stay at the hospital, to make sure I'm physically and mentally prepared to be her new student..." She fought back nervous laughter. "How about you?"

"Me? Oh, I'm just having an operation," Swift said, a blush starting on his own turquoise cheeks. He looked around the room, as if making sure that no one else were around. "You know how pegasi wings are ball and socket joints?" Sunset nodded slowly, though she did not actually know this. "Well, the balls in mine are flat, so it’s really painful to move my wings-” he looked down and bit his lip. “-and I can’t fly very well.”

Sunset couldn't help herself anymore. She kicked the blankets off herself and rushed over to Swift, wrapping him in a big hug. He was surprised, she felt his little muscles tighten up. But soon he returned the embrace, and that's when she decided to tell him the truth. He'd told her, even though it was embarrassing to him. Now she'd do the same, though there was a nagging feeling in the back of her head telling her it was a mistake.

He moved over to make room for Sunset on his bed, and she told him. Here she was in this strange place, with a power she couldn’t even use properly. But now she had a friend, and though he was startled at first, it didn’t take long for Swift to empathize with the new unicorn.

They spent the rest of their time playing a game of chess. Swift moved his pieces carelessly, undoubtedly preoccupied with thoughts of his upcoming operation, Sunset figured. So she allowed her own mind to wander during the game, and soon her stomach was turning at the idea of simply another day in this world.

Author's Note:

So, still looking for someone to do cover art for this, any volunteers?