• Published 19th Jun 2015
  • 2,344 Views, 77 Comments

Psychadelic - Masterweaver

One is a cosmically aware eco-friendly drifter. One is a reformed chaotic manifestation still adjusting to society. Together, they bake brownies, save worlds, and get to know each other!

  • ...

Before Oblivious Now Grasping Objectives

The venue was, indeed, quite memorable. Primarily because it wasn't in Equestria at all.

Oh, Discord wasn't stupid enough to try to take Tree Hugger to a place in another world, not so soon after the gala. No, nonono, this was actually still in the same universe, the same galaxy--the same planet even! The fact that it was not technically within the bounds of the country Celestia ruled--and Luna too, technically speaking--was really just a minor detail in his mind.

Granted, a number of the plants and animals in this particular jungle had never been seen by pony eyes.

And there was the whole thing with the temple of an ancient race being a small distance off.

As well as the whole "accursed by thine ancestors" nonsense that wraith had been ranting about when Tree Hugger met it.

But really, what was camping without a little adventure? Wasn't that the whole point? Civilized ponies, conquering their fears of the wilds by sleeping under the stars?

Or perhaps, Discord mused as Tree Hugger returned with a collection of dry sticks, maybe it was just about enjoying the natural world without any sort of attached meaning.

"You know I could have just created a fire without all this silly gathering nonsense," he pointed out, watching as she started to place sticks carefully into a small dug-out pit. "I could have made a whole tiki lodge for us! With chanting statues and exotic dancers in grass skirts!"

Tree Hugger chuckled as she started crushing a few leaves and scattering them in the fire pit. "Oh, do you know the Kapua?"

Discord scoffed. "Those islanders? My dear, I..." He sighed, deflating. "It's really a very long story, actually. I'd rather not talk about it." His twisted gaze traveled over the horizon wistfully.

"Peace, my bro. Just asking." The mare pulled some rocks from her saddlebag, striking them together. "Not many ponies know about them, is all. You brought up tikis, and you're, like, pretty well traveled, right?"

"Eh, yes and no. I've gone far and wide in my time, but that was pretty long ago. Do you know, Tartarus wasn't even around when I first tried to conquer Equestria?"

"Huh. That would explain why you didn't know what to expect from Tirek." Tree Hugger shrugged. "Sometimes, I totally forget that you were a statue for a couple thousand years."

Discord frowned. "Really."

"Mmmyeah. Kinda focused more on the now, you know? Don't get me wrong," she added, "I can get how that was, like, a core part of your past. Being forced to become unchanging... yeah, so not you. I just don't dwell there, cause... well, I don't know. I never saw the past as more than a series of object lessons to teach those who are."

She frowned, continuing to strike the rocks together. "Come on... this usually works..." Pursing her lips, she brought one up to her nose and sniffed it.

"...Having trouble there?"

"...I was using the wrong rock." Tree Hugger groaned, putting the rock down beside her and reaching into her saddlebags again. "This is so embarrassing..."

Discord chuckled as she produced another rock and sniffed it. "Most ponies wouldn't carry rocks in their saddlebags, you know. How many do you have in there anyway?"

Tree Hugger grinned despite herself. "A prime number." She let out a small snort of satisfaction as a spark leapt from her rocks and set the contents of the pit ablaze. "There we go! Our own little contained instance of destruction and entropy, creating light in a wilderness thus unexplored by ponykind, through which we can warm both our physical forms and through the sharing of words our ethereal selves. And, like, make some totally righteous smores."

"Ah, smores. That century-old delicacy, invented by some creative foal who was told to only eat sandwiches." Discord manifested some marshmallows on his talons, popping off his left arm and holding it over the flames. "I'm a little surprised you didn't suggest brownies."

The mare frowned. "Is that a druggie jab? Cause I don't do drugs."


"Seriously. Smoked a hookah, like, once, cause the ponies with it were all like 'gets you one with the universe, man!'" She snorted. "Yeah, no. What it does, see, it loosens the magic flow of your chakras. Yeah, you can see more of the universe, but that's because you're less of you and you're floating about in the stream, unable to control yourself. Unbalanced. Sometimes, you're not even able to get scared because you're so... wispy."

She shivered, hugging herself. "Never again. If they need it, fine, but me? Never again."

Discord awkwardly scratched his hoof with one of his lizard claws. "I... I shouldn't have assumed. You just seem so--"

"Out there?" Tree Hugger smiled up at him. "Yeah, I get that a lot. When your thought process doesn't quite meld with that of the usual pony kind, people just start looking for explanations. I don't blame them." She nestled herself against him, letting out a little sigh. "If they feel they don't know enough about something, that something has to be wild in their mind. Uncontrolled, chaotic, you know? Too many of them think organization is necessary for harmony." Her hoof waved round in an indicating gesture. "Big scary trees, ooooo, who knows what's in them?"

The spirit of chaos couldn't hold back a little smile at her giggle. "See, that's what gets to me too. Almost nopony stops to think that things outside their little system could be a good thing in its own right." He screwed his arm back on, levitating some graham crackers and chocolate to smoosh the melting marshmallow between. "I mean, when I first came around I just screwed around because the ponies of the time were just so... boring. Did you know, old Equestria had this whole caste system going on? Bleugh!" Discord sighed. "Of course, I never actually tried talking to them, I just started up craziness wherever I went. Some of them did come to me asking for things--I think there was this cult, actually, that saw me as some sort of liberator, I remember marrying a lot of ponies from different tribes--Oh! This one time, I actually swapped a couple's genders just as they were kissing, and they were overjoyed! Apparently they had lots of foals and now basically a fifth of Equestria has their blood..."

He cleared his throat. "My point is, the unusual can be bad, but it's also often good. The Wendigos led to Equestria's foundation, Tirek brought along his brother Scorpan--wish I could have met that old gargoyle--heck, Hearts and Hooves day was essentially started after some pony drugged a royal couple and let his county collapse." With a chuckle, Discord handed Tree Hugger one of the smores.

"Mmm. Horrible histories lead to modern wonders." The mare nibbled on the proffered treat. "That's the easiest for ponies to see since the past is frozen. It won't--it shouldn't attack them, they think. It's nice and distant." She snuggled in deeper. "But change is, like, the one thing that is constant. Paradox of reality, but it's totally true...?"

Tree Hugger giggled again. "Sorry, I lost my train of thought there. We were talking about unusual not being bad or good, and I start talking about change... the trees here are so interesting." She shut her eyes, her ears twitching against Discord's barrel. "There's so many vines just whispering through them, and they give freely. I can smell the water dripping down the leaves, mixing pollen from higher flowers with necter in the lower ones... I can hear the buzz of small insects, dipping into the pools of sugar and stirring them together... I can feel the whispers of passing wings as the feathered snakes fly down from their perches, snatching the animals that would eat the blooms and dropping them off in the nests of their young... and, yeah, this smore tastes radical."

Discord looked up into the branches. "You got all that with your eyes closed?"

"Mmm. Yep. It's pretty amazing, when you think about it. I mean, trees are trees, but even in that framework there's just so much variety."

"...I suppose there is."

The two of them sat listening to the various squeaks and sqwaks of the jungle around them, occasionally punctuated by a howl of unbridled fury when the wraith attempted to break through the enchanted shield around the temple. Discord tilted his gaze to the pony barely a quarter of his size, basking in the twin warmth of the fire and his own body's feather-fur substance. She seemed as content here in this moment as away in her garden, or at the gala... and that was another thing about her, she seemed to just be herself no matter what the situation was. A lot of ponies were constantly watching their actions whenever they were pushed out of their comfort zone, but... Tree Hugger, he realized, was her own comfort zone. She never tried to change the world for her own gain; she simply rebalanced whenever the world threw her a curveball, surfing peacefully on waves that would drown far greater people then her. She was... maddeningly adaptable, simply because she was so aware of her own self!

It was such a contradiction to everything Discord knew about ponies. The chaotic ones embraced change, the orderly ones rejected it, but... Tree Hugger was exactly like the trees she hugged. Enduring any storm, and drawing in the rain to grow. She was...

And suddenly he realized. She was. Pure and simple.

Discord wrapped his lion's paw around her, almost without thinking. Another puzzle solved, perhaps. But then, why was Tree Hugger so intriguing? True, she was unique, but that could be said of so many things. So many ponies, in point of fact. He tilted his head, watching her finish off the last of the smore. She was so frustrating, but at the same time so... so...


Why did he come back to her, week after week? What was it about her that fascinated him... well, obviously, it was her sense of self, but Celestia had that as well. On the other talon, Celestia didn't entirely trust him--true, they were friends now, and she actually enjoyed his pranks, but there was always a wariness to her gaze... a wariness shared by most ponies. Fluttershy accepted him, but she... well, she was a frail thing, and he never felt like really unleashing his full potential around her.

Tree Hugger, he realized, accepted him, and accepted herself. She was Celestia's confidence, Fluttershy's understanding, and just enough of her own brand of zaniness to be distinctly herself. And... he liked that, he mused. He'd never had a friend like that. Never a friend like her.

"You're awfully quiet," Tree Hugger commented.

"Hmm?" Discord shook himself. "Oh, yes, sorry. I was lost in thought, you know how it is."

"Really?" The mare's voice took on a teasing tone. "And here I was thinking you were a creature unbound by the complexities of thought, like, just going with your own flow."

"Hey now, I can have deep thoughts!"

"Never said you couldn't." Tree Hugger yawned. "You're so floofy, you know? Like a biiiiiiig ferret kitty. Causin' my body to feel comfortable, sleepways."

Discord chuckled. "You're drifting off then?"


"Want me to set up the tent?"

"Who needs tents?" The mare snuggled deeper into him. "Got me dracyequui. Scare off the monsters, plus superwarm. Good cook too."

The spirit of chaos shook his head as the mare drifted into Luna's realm, a small smile on his lips. He took one last look around--

"Oh, what?" he grumbled, giving the wraith a challenging glare. "You never saw a sleeping pony before?"

The wraith whistled softly, its eyes peering from the shadowed form.

"Yeah, well, this one respects nature in all its forms. So you're not getting her." Discord waved his talon. "Now go on, shoo, you probably have some lost travellers to eat."

An offended hiss.

"Well that's about the same as eating them isn't it?"

A series of clicks.

"...look, we can argue about this all night, or you can go about your duties. And trust me, my name is Discord? I can keep this argument going."

The wraith threw up its claws and whirled away, throwing a parting wail over its shoulders.

"What?! She is not---!"

Discord paused, giving the sleeping pony a contemplative look.

"...Well, she's not right now," he mused. "But then, where does friendship end and love begin...?"

Author's Note: