• Published 9th May 2012
  • 40,322 Views, 851 Comments

Thrown Abroad - Niaeruzu



A changeling is thrown out of the changeling hive and ends up in a familiar village.

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Chapter 4

Suncloak stood bumbling for words. “Element of Honesty, you say? As in, one of the Elements of Harmony? As in, the Elements of Harmony who defeated our- I mean, the changeling invasion in Canterlot?”

Applejack nodded and blushed a little. “Though Ah didn’t really do all that much,” she admitted.

“Well then, I guess I should be going then,” the changeling hastily said, “bye, thanks, see you later!”

As he made for the door, his stomach rumbled once more. On the one hoof, he couldn’t stay here. There could be more of the Elements in the village, and he wasn’t exactly looking forward to being subjected to whatever those could do to him.

On the other hoof, he probably wouldn’t last much longer without some love to feed on.

“You aren’t going to stay for a while?” Sweetie Belle asked him with big eyes. Apple Bloom and Scootaloo decided to join in the puppy eyes look, probably because they thought such an idiotic thing would convince him to stay.

“Fine,” Suncloak answered. No, you doofus, you have to leave this place, he thought to himself. Still, he couldn't ignore the fillies for some reason. Maybe being hungry made him especially sappy. Or dumb.

“Well, yer lucky Ah just made some apple pie,” Applejack said, “but, Apple Bloom, yer gonna have to do some extra chores fer this.”

Apple Bloom’s ears drooped. “Awww.”



A few moments later, they were all happily eating. Big Macintosh, a large, red stallion with an orange mane and a yoke, had joined them, as well as an elderly green mare, named Granny Smith.

The apple pie was... Suncloak couldn’t really put it into words. If he had to pick one word, it would be delicious, but that didn’t really do it justice. He knew one thing for sure: apples are heavenly.

The ponies were ravenously eating their pie, except for Granny Smith, who had a bit of trouble because of her old bones. Big Macintosh was able to help her, however. The Apples seemed like a close and loving family.

Yes, there was enough love to go around here. The smell of it hung thickly in the air; the ponies might not be able to smell it, but the changeling sure could. As he slowly ate the apple pie, savouring every bite, he had to resist the temptation to steal all that love. Sure, love from a couple was the most delicious, but the love between family members could be very tasty as well.

But stealing love from a host is just something you don’t do. If they show you some hospitality, you don’t go and steal from them. That’s horrible.

It’s alright if you steal from random passersby though.

He was about halfway through his food when all the others were finished. Applejack gave him an odd look. “Don’t ya like it?”

“It’f delishouf,” he said with a full mouth. He swallowed, to his dismay. “One of the best things I ever ate!” He reached to take another bite as Applejack raised a brow. “Uh, it’s... a custom where I come from. To eat really slowly when you love the food?” That wasn’t entirely false: since changelings didn’t actually need food to survive, they ate the most delicious meals slowly, to savour the taste.

Big Macintosh pensively tapped his chin. “Makes sense,” he said. The others agreed. Another crisis successfully averted.

“So, where are you staying?” Scootaloo asked Suncloak, as she ate the crumbs off her plate.

“Oh, in the woods over there,” he said as he waved in the general direction of the forest he had landed in.

The ponies let out a gasp and stared at him with wide eyes. Except Granny Smith, who had dozed off and started snoring.

“Yer sleeping in the Everfree Forest?” Apple Bloom asked him.

“That’s really dangerous!” Applejack added. Big Macintosh nodded in agreement.

“Well, I’m only sleeping at the edge of the forest,” Suncloak offered in defense, “really, I’m doing fine.”

“Yeah, and then a manticore eats you, or you get turned to stone by one of those cockatrixies,” Scootaloo countered.

“You mean cockatrices,” Sweetie Belle corrected. Scootaloo dismissively muttered something about dictionaries.

“It’s no big deal, honestly,” Suncloak retorted. Actually, manticores and cockatrices sounded incredibly scary. So was being around an Element of Harmony, but at least she didn’t show any interest in tearing him to shreds.

Yet.

“We can’t let ya stay there,” Applejack said, as the others nodded in agreement. Well, Granny Smith more than likely just nodded because she was asleep in her rocking chair. “But we don’t have a spare room...”

A light bulb went off above Apple Bloom’s head. “Maybe we can let ya stay in the barn! Enough space, and ya could probably improvise a bed or somethin’.” She cast a glance toward the light bulb. “Ah thought Ah fixed that,” she murmured to herself.

“Ah guess that’d work,” Applejack said, “if that’s alright with Suncloak here.”

“Sure, sure,” he answered. Anything was better than sleeping in a forest with manticores and cockatrices and whatnot. He wished he actually hadn’t heard about those creatures. Ignorance is bliss, after all.

“Well, follow me then,” Applejack said, as she went outside. It was getting dark already.

The changeling quickly finished his piece of pie, then went after her, remaining silent until they reached the barn. Once there, Applejack arranged a few bales of hay in a corner to resemble a bed. Sort of.

“I can getcha a spare pillow, just wait a moment,” she said as she hurried off.

Suncloak fidgeted nervously. “Of course staying with one of the Elements of Harmony is a good idea,” he tried to convince himself, “nothing will go wrong! Nothing at all!”

He stood for another moment, and sighed. “Oh who am I kidding. I’ve gotta feed and get the hay out of Dodge. Or, out of Ponyville, actually.”

Applejack returned with a pillow. “Well, it ain’t much, but...” she trailed off, not wanting to be a bad host.

“It’s alright. Thanks,” the changeling told her. ‘Thanks’ wasn’t exactly a word he had ever counted on honestly using. Then again, being banished, thrown miles away, and ending up close to one of the ponies he should probably consider his worst enemies could do strange things to anyling. “I think I’ll go to sleep, then.”

Applejack nodded. “Goodnight, Suncloak,” she said as she exited the barn and closed the door.

“Good night, Applejack,” he echoed after her.

A few moments after she closed the door, he started hyperventilating.

“Oh by the hole-y hooves of queen Chrysalis, I’m done for!” he wailed. “They’re going to catch on at some point and then blast me with the Elements or call princess Celestia! One of these days, bam, zoom, straight to the moon!” He threw off the cloak and sunglasses; he probably wouldn’t be bothered now anyway. He sat down and chewed on his front hooves.

He managed to calm himself down after more wailing than he’d like to admit, and a few additional holes in his hooves. Now, he could notice a peculiar scent in the air. It hung loosely around him, and smelled a bit like...

Love?

Odd. There wasn’t any pony around to give love, but there was still a bit of love hanging around. The changeling’s horn glowed softly as he took it in.

It wasn’t much, but at least it was enough to still his hunger for a little while.

He draped the cloak over the bed as a makeshift blanket, and set the sunglasses aside. He could go to sleep for now. The ponies seemed nice enough, and didn’t seem to suspect him of anything, and considering the level of intellect they had displayed, it’d probably take them some time to realize he was a changeling, and by then, he would’ve already left.

Yeah, and maybe if I keep telling myself that, I’ll be able to convince myself, he thought as he went to sleep.