• Published 31st May 2015
  • 407 Views, 11 Comments

Unchanging Love - luxuryyacht

A young colt struggles to deal with his family life, meanwhile the CMC have found evidence of changelings living in ponyville.

  • ...

Chapter 1 - A perfectly normal day

Chapter 1

The door to Golden Oak Library swung gently open, admitting two earth ponies, first a stallion, and then a colt. The stallion had a coat of deep blue that nearly hid his cutie mark of a quill dipping into a pot of ink. The colt was deep purple with a fiery red mane, and had yet to earn his cutie mark.

"Salutations Twilight Sparkle." the stallion greeted cheerily. Twilight looked up from her copy of Organize everything! volume XII and moved to greet the visitors as a thin blue ribbon slipped carefully into the closing book.

"Oh, hello Inkwell. Did Wishing Well like that book I recommended?" Twilight asked, smiling pleasantly.

"She loved it! Much more than the ones I write," Inkwell responded with a chuckle. "and to that end, here it is." He twisted to pull out a slim volume from his saddlebag and placed it in the book return.

"Glad to hear it. Did she ask you to pick up another book for her?" her face twisted in a moment’s contemplation. "I think I know of a few historical fiction series she might enjoy," she offered a moment later.

"No no, she said she won't have time to read for a few weeks, but Comet here was looking for something to read," Inkwell said, indicating the colt who was up until now trying his best to remain unnoticed behind his father. "Something other than what his dear old pop has written anyway," he explained with a smile as he stepped aside and brought the little colt up beside him. "Seems like no pony wants to read the boring old tales I write anymore," he said with a twinkle in his eye.

"Oh-ho, no. You know I like your novels, and now you're just fishing for compliments," Twilight rebuffed, then, turning to Comet, "Now, as for you young colt, I'd be willing to bet you like adventure stories. Am I right?" Comet nodded sheepishly as Twilight turned and walked over to the one of the many bookcases that lined the walls of the great tree. "Ok then," she said as her eyes scanned the titles. "How about something by Jewels Barn, A Journey to the Center of Equestria. How's that sound?" She asked giving the colt a hopeful look over her shoulder.

"An excellent choice!" Inkwell broke in. "You know your readers, Miss Sparkle." at this, Comet's face twisted up in confusion for a second, but Twilight, not noticing, merely smiled as her horn began to glow as she brought her attention back around to the appropriate tome, which slid carefully off its shelf and zipped over and into Inkwell's open saddlebag. She moved back to her guests as this happened, and opened her mouth as if to speak.

Just then, three fillies bounded into the library shouting, "Twilight!" in excited tones.

"Well, looks like we're done here, thanks again Twilight," Inkwell said as he and Comet calmly made their way out.

"Any time, Inkwell," Twilight called back, and then to the new arrivals, "Ok girls, what can I do for you?"

"We need to use your chemistry set to identify some gak we found!" exclaimed the young pegasus.

"It's not gak, it's gunk," corrected the little earth pony contentiously.

"It doesn't matter what you call it, until we identify it and become cutie mark cellular biologists!" said an exasperated unicorn. Twilight sighed at this, Scootaloo, Applebloom, and Sweetie Belle made up three quarters of a club devoted to discovering their special talents, and this activity frequently led to disruptions throughout Ponyville.

"Alright girls," Twilight started, deciding the best way to minimize damage was to be directly involved. "Why don't we start by showing me what you've found?" she suggested, taking a seated pose near them.

"Sure thing Twilight," Applebloom said amicably, twisting to pull a jar of green slime from her saddlebag. Almost immediately the jar shot like a rocket to just a few inches shy of Twilight's face, container shimmering in a faint pink nimbus. She then tried to hide her reaction to the thing, but she knew she had already given away too much. The jar floated a little lower so Twilight could see the three friends, their eyes wide as saucers, and said, "Ok" drawing the word out. "let's head down to the lab."

Inkwell and Comet made their way through the market. It was sparsely attended, this being a midweek summer's afternoon. Even the fountain in the town square had seemed to flow lazily with summer's mirth. Various carts were set up along the main thoroughfare, displaying a dizzying array of goods. Everything from fresh produce, to cleaning products, to stands boasting knife sharpening and hoof polishing services. Inkwell stopped a several of these, picking up some odds and ends that their family would need over the next few days.

Once the two had moved on past the main market, Comet summoned the courage to confront his father. "Dad," he started, picking up his pace to move from behind to beside his father, "why didn't you let me handle it earlier? Just jumping in like that."
Inkwell shot a confused glance at his son. "At the flower cart?" he asked, puzzled.

"No!" Comet said curtly, clearly annoyed. "At the library. The lady asked me a question, and you just jumped in and answered for me," the little colt was building up steam as well as confidence and a little indignation tinged his voice as he continued, "I mean, I can talk for myself. I can make my own decisions."
Inkwell considered that for a second and then shrugged. "Yes, I suppose you're right. I should've waited for you to make your own decision, but trust me son, you'll like Jewel's Barn," he said with all the confidence a brick wall has staring down a tennis ball.

"How do you know!" Comet blurted, his face flush, eyebrows narrowing.
Inkwell gave him a warm look as they turned onto their street and said with slight smirk, "I was like you once, and like they say, the apple never falls far from the tree." Inkwell bumped his son's flank as he delivered the colloquialism.
Comet's head sank a little as a heavy frown crossed his face. "I'm nothing like you," he muttered with all the seriousness and finality a colt could muster.

The laboratory beneath Golden Oak Library had been dug out by Spike in the months after her taking permanent residence in Ponyville after Nightmare Moon's defeat. It was now the perfect place to conduct dangerous scientific experiments. Twilight's horn glowed for an instant and the multitude of candles throughout the room came to life, illuminating the various machines that lined the walls of the cave-like basement. The four ponies solemnly made their way to the chemistry set on the northern wall. The jubilence of the fillies was gone now, replaced by awed silence. The levitating jar of semi-viscous fluid settled down gently on the counter, its nimbus fading.

There it sat, for what seemed like an eternity as Twilight Sparkle craned her head about the jar, inspecting it from multiple angles, her face twisted with thought, until Applebloom finally broke the silence with a timid, "Well, uh, aren'tcha gonna open it?" Twilight looked back at the three fillies with a concerned look on her face.

"I'm trying to decide what safety precautions to take," looking back at the jar, she added, "I don't know if, or how dangerous it may be," Twilight explained.

"Well, we're fine, and I scooped it into that jar with my hoof," Scootaloo said, somewhat disgruntled, one eye cocked and her shoulders shrugged as she looked to her two friends for confirmation.

"You did what!" a shocked Twilight exclaimed, the force of the thought rocking her back onto her rear hooves. Her horn instantly flared as she whirled to see the filly's front hooves, now magically held in place before her.

"Sheesh, I'm fine Twilight!" Scootaloo protested while trying to pry herself loose.

"Hmm, so it would seem," Twilight said, processing what she saw. "You don't feel any numbness do you?" she asked looking back up into the filly's eyes.

"No!" Scootaloo half shouted.

"Ok," she said, releasing the magic holding Scootaloo's hooves aloft, causing her to tumble head over horseshoes into an uncharacteristic pile of miscellaneous equipment. "Here, wear these safety goggles in case some of it bubbles or splashes out," Twilight said as four pair of goggles floated over from a cabinet a few feet away. Once they were all wearing proper safety equipment, she turned to start her work.

Twilight poked, prodded, heated, cooled, and generally did things the Cutie Mark Crusaders couldn't identify.

"She's been at this forever," complained Sweetie Belle, sprawled out, chin resting on the dirt floor.

"Yeah, I don't think I want a cutie mark in celery boogey anymore," Scootaloo added from a few feet away where she sat, cutting shapes into the floor with her hoof.

"Cellular. Biology." Applebloom corrected fiercely, who had found a workbench leg to lean her back on.

"Ugh, you are such a dictionary," Scootaloo said, staring daggers at her reclining friend. "Maybe you could get a cutie mark in being the word police," she teased.

"What is wrong with you two!" Sweetie Belle exploded, sitting up, "You always do this, can't you just be civil for once?"

"Civil?" Applebloom pondered as she stroked her chin with her hoof, then a grin began to spread across her lips as an idea settled in, "That's it! We could be cutie mark civil engineers!"

"Yeah!" The other two cried out, jumping to their hooves.

"Hmm..." came floating over from Twilight.

"Hmm?" echoed the three fillies, having remembered why they were here in the first place as they zipped over to the chem lab in their familiar formation.

"Do you know what it is Twilight?" Applebloom asked, eyes wide with anticipation.

"I think I do," said Twilight confidently, nodding her head once as she turned around.

"Well, what is it?" asked Scootaloo excitedly.

"I don't want to say until I get a second opinion," she responded flatly, and the fillies faces fell like bricks as the jar lifted up off the counter, and they made their way back upstairs.

"Well, who are you going to ask, Princess Celestia?" inquired Sweetie Belle hopefully.

"No, I don't think I need to bother her with this. I'm going to go ask Zecora what she thinks," Twilight replied as she slipped on her saddlebag. "Her alchemical knowledge is even better than mine," she said as she turned to the girls as she pocketed the jar, "and before you ask, no, you can't come with me. I need you to stay here and watch the library for me while I'm away." Scootaloo, Applebloom, and Sweetie Belle gave each other exasperated looks. "If this is what I think it is, I'm going to need your help, so please, just wait here and make a record of any books lent out." The girls seemed disappointed at this, but submissive, so Twilight started out the door at a trot, but then swiveled her head back through and added, "If Trixie comes in asking for Ghastly's Grimoire, tell her it's still out. Better for everypony that way."