• Published 13th May 2012
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Memories in a Bottle - Pacce



A look at Berry Punch and her family full of dysfunction!

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My Dizzy Mom

It has often been said that a pony’s life will flash before her eyes when she is about to die. Cherry Daiquiri believed this, but she didn’t think it was possible to die of embarrassment. But sure enough, when she saw her mother pull her face from the punch bowl in front of every single pony in her class and come stumbling over to her with a big dumb grin on her face, every moment of her young unicorn life flashed in front of her.

One of her earliest memories was her walking down the street with her blue unicorn mother, Romana, or “Romama” as she had become fond of calling her because it sounded funny, and her purple earth pony mother, Berry Punch, or “Fruity Mama” as she called her because of the grapes and strawberry she had as a cutie mark. This particular walk stayed with her as it was the first time she asked why Fruity Mama would sometimes start stumbling like she was tripping over something.

She remembered Romama’s eyes looking so sad even though she was smiling as touched her mane and said, “She just gets dizzy sometimes." From that moment on, Cherry had rechristened “Fruity Mama” as “Dizzy Mom”.

Life with her Dizzy Mom was actually a lot of fun. Some days Cherry would be walking with her and she’d start stumbling and then Cherry would stumble along with her. Her Dizzy Mom would then turn around with an exaggerated scowl on her face. She would mock-shout, “Are you making fun of me kid?" Then they’d both burst in to giggles.

Unlike her best friend’s, a unicorn name Tootsie Flute, parents Ms. Lyra and Ms. Bon-Bon or even her own Romama, Dizzy Mom didn’t act like a grown up. She never sighed about work or bills and she never told Cherry to quiet down when she was really excited or in the mood to play.

Some of Cherry’s favorite memories were when she’d get a little dance in her system that just had to come out. Romama would shush her and tell her to save it for when they were at home, but not Dizzy Mom. No matter where they were, she would place a hoof on her head and ask, “May I have this dance, little one?" Then, they would dance. They would dance until they both fell on the floor and then Dizzy would hug her and throw Cherry over her back until she was rested enough to walk again.

There were other times when Dizzy Mom wasn’t fun at all. Sometimes she’d yell at ponies pulling carts for not stopping fast enough, even when Cherry had just stepped one hoof on the road. She couldn’t count the times she’d been yanked by her tail because her Dizzy Mom thought she saw the shadow of something falling and she was always yelling at pegasus ponies for flying near her. Cherry was always pushed behind Dizzy Mom when meeting new ponies and Cherry was never ever never allowed to go anywhere by herself, even at Tootsie Flute’s place when Miss Lyra and Miss Bon-Bon were home, either Dizzy Mom or Romama had to be there.

She’d get mad and yell, “It’s not fair! All the others kids get to play outside whenever they want and nothing bad happens to them.”

Dizzy Mom would scowl for real and say, “Nothing’s happened to them yet. And nothing is gonna get to hurt you ever.”

She’d then run and ask Romama who would always just say, “Your mother has your best interests in mind and you should obey her.”

However, these times of annoyance were few and far between. Even when she was cooped up inside while her moms ran their “Clock and Wine” shop, Dizzy Mom would take every moment between customers to play with her. She remembered asking if she could have a drink from one of the big bottles Dizzy Mom was so often drinking from. Dizzy Mom had a mischievous smile on her face when she poured a glass and said, “Drink all you want, little one." Cherry hadn’t even been able to swallow one sip of the horrible stuff. Dizzy had laughed as she swallowed the whole glass in one gulp. Cherry still didn’t get what was so funny.

Everything changed when she started going to school. She remembered all the other kids getting little kisses from their parents and even getting such a good bye herself from Romama. Dizzy Mom had marched into her classroom and gave Ms. Cheerilee a very large list of instructions and told her teacher that, “I’ll be watching you.”

Some of the kids had laughed and Cherry had thought it was funny too. Then an earth pony with a big bow in her hair, her name was Applebloom she’d find out later, asked, “What’s wrong with you mom? She walks and talks like my sister after taking one too many blows to the head.”

Repeating what Romama said, she had replied, “She just gets dizzy sometimes.”

A harsh laugh had sounded from behind her and equally harsh voice said, “She’s not dizzy, she’s drunk." This was how Cherry had met Diamond Tiara and her friend Silver Spoon.

Cherry turned around and asked what she meant. Silver Spoon adjusted her glasses and asked in a voice that dripped mockery, “You see her drinking from those big bottles all the time?" Silver Spoon did not wait for an answer before continuing. “Those are drinks that make her act all stupid. My mommy says that ponies only drink that stuff outside of parties when they don’t like their life and want to get away.”

Diamond Tiara laughed and asked, “So what is it your mom doesn’t like, is it you?”

Cherry remembered crying a lot that day.

While Dizzy Mom was asleep, although she now felt embarrassed calling her that, she asked Romama if it was true that her Other Mom didn’t like her life and if she was drinking to get away from it. Romama had sat Cherry down. “Berry, your mother,” she began, “it’s true that she drinks more than I would like. But she’s not doing it to get away from either of us, she does it to remember somepony she lost, your grandfather. You never met him, but he was wonderful. She had lived on his vineyard, that’s a place where they grow they ingredients for wine.”

“Like our garden,” Cherry interrupted.

Romama had smiled then, “Yes, but much much bigger. It still operates even with him gone and they send a shipment here every so often for us to sell. Some of these your mother keeps for herself. The flavor reminds her of her days there with him and she does miss him terribly, even if she never talks about it.”

The next day Cherry told Silver Spoon and Diamond Tiara this story. They had pushed her over and laughed. After that, Cherry was just careful not to bring up her mom in school. Not that it stopped others from bringing it up.

“Sorry Cherry,” Tootsie would say when she wouldn’t sit next to her during bad days, “But I have my own troubles without being caught up in yours." They’d still spend time together after school, but Tootsie preferred it if Romama brought her over and stayed with her.

Cherry had even asked little Dinky Hooves, daughter of the town’s wall eyed mail mare, what she did about her embarrassing mom. Dinky didn’t understand the question, “My mom’s the coolest pony in town,” she said with a giant smile. Clearly, Dinky would be of no help.

Months went by like this with Cherry spending all the time she could at Tootsie’s and away from her Other Mom. Things became strange not long after she got her cutie mark, Other Mom stopped working in the shop and stopped even asking if she could take Cherry to Tootsie’s saying that, “I’m sure Romana would be more than happy to spend time with Ms. Bon-Bon.”

On top of that, Other Mom was drinking more. A lot more. Days would go by and she would barely look at Cherry. She tried asking Romama about it and she just said, “She’s just feeling melancholy, it’s happened before and it’ll pass like all the other times.”

Cherry missed the fun she had with her old Dizzy Mom, but at the same time, she was relieved that she mostly stayed indoors. Except then, she didn’t. Her drunken mom would wander the town while she was at school and occasionally tap on the window going by and shout her hellos. At night she’d wander out and Cherry wouldn’t see her come in before she went to bed.

As the whispers of the other kids and even the adults she passed on the street grew louder, her other mom only drew closer and became more insistent to take her everywhere. She’d stumble and dance and laugh and yell while Cherry tried desperately to find someplace to hide. Cherry would beg Romama to take her out, but she’d just say, “Your mother has your best interests in mind and you should obey her.”

Cherry’s memories caught up to today, the day of Diamond Tiara’s cuteceañera. She was relieved when Romama said that she’d take her, but then Other Mom showed up. She had shambled in to Sugar Cube Corner and jammed her face straight into the punch bowl in front of everypony. As she stumbled over, Cherry saw Tootsie inching away and Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon watching with the most horrible smiles on their faces. Other Mom dramatically bowed in front of Cherry, her rump nearly knocking over a nearby cake. “May I have this dance, little one,” she slurred out with her eyes bright.

Cherry had shuffled her hooves, her face burning, when she was struck with a burst of resolve. Cherry marched forward and yanked on her Dumb Mom’s tail and lead her to the door before turning around. “No mom, I don’t want to dance. I want you to go home.”

Berry blinked several times, a stupid look of confusion on her face. “You loved dancing.”

Cherry sighed, “Mom, you’re embarrassing me. Again! Why don’t you go home and have another drink, but far away from me.”

Her mom’s ears fell and her whole face seemed to collapse in on itself. She just nodded and walked out the door. Cherry felt rotten, but was glad to see that with her gone Diamond Tiara and Silver Spoon had moved on to bothering Applebloom. Cherry walked over to Tootsie, “I think I hurt her feelings.”

Tootsie rolled her eyes, “She’s a grown up, they’re tough. Besides you saw how she was. Do you even think she’ll remember any of this in the morning.”

Cherry laughed, “Yeah, you’re right. She’ll be fine." Cherry really hoped she’d believe that herself eventually.

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