• Published 26th Oct 2015
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Symphonic Fusion - Duelist925



Octavia will do almost anything for an old friend. Even go on a blind date with a wildly garish mare.

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Chapter 7: Waffles

For a few blissful minutes Octavia existed in a state of fog in that wonderful place between reality and sleep. For a few minutes, the day before hadn’t happened, and her life was normal. She was a normal filly, with a normal life, a normal…ish marefriend, and a normal dark secret that she’d share when she was ready. For a few minutes, she was happy.

Then she finished waking up.

Octavia lay there for a few minutes, curled up in her bed. She didn’t remember getting off the couch, but she was tucked in under a warm comforter. And she was alone. She curled up tighter, fighting back tears as she tried not to think of the possibilities, of why Vinyl wouldn’t be there. Tried not to think of pink elephants…

Stifling a sob, she pulled her breathing back under her control. She scrubbed at her eyes with the back of a hoof, and shuddered once, breathing slowly.

You knew this could happen, Tavi. You knew she might not understand. Knew it might…cause problems.

She sucked in another breath.

She’s probably just…freaking out. Maybe. Or trying to figure shit out herself. Give her some time, some space, and approach her later. Be smart about this. Be cautious. And…be ready. Because she might not want to stay.

Octavia took in another steadying breath. She was starting to feel a bit more centered, a bit calmer. A bit more in control of herself. She pushed herself upright.

Ok. A bit of meditation. Focus, and center yourself, Octavia. Focus. Breath. Foc—

She was kicked out of her mental quietude and what little balance she’d re-achieved when the door to her room burst open and a mostly white unicorn stepped in. Mostly white due both to her neon mane, and several spots of what looked like singed fur along her sides. And what looked suspiciously like a glob of syrup soaking into her flank.

“Hey Tavi! Sorry, thought it’d be ready before you woke up. Uh. Sleep well?” She had the kind of nervous smile on her face that Octavia couldn’t remember her ever sporting before. “Good dreams? Like, maybe the marshmallow on—nevermind! Anyway! Uh. “ She trotted in, a tray floating behind her.

Some part of Octavia’s mind, not currently numbed by surprise or depression, was astonished that there were no months old toaster pastries on the tray. Instead, there was a decent stack of waffles, a bowl of the frosted corn flakes Vinyl had insisted on buying instead of the regular kind, and a pair of glasses, orange and white liquid contained in either.

Octavia stared, mouth open slightly, at the tableu before her long enough for Vinyl to start twitching, and her smile to start looking more and more strained.

“I uh. It…I. “ The Dj stammered, before her head drooped slightly. “I’m sorry,” she said, voice quiet.

“…What?” Octavia was surprised she had managed to respond.

“I’m sorry for last night. I…I shouldn’t have pried the way I did. It was dumb, and really, really stupid. I shoulda understood you and, and junk, and…please don’t be mad?” She looked up at Tavi with eyes swimming with worry and tinged with just a bit of fear. She looked pathetic, honestly, and part of her mane was still smoldering.

Octavia stared at her wordlessly for a long moment, eyes wide. It wasn’t until Vinyl started to fidget that she moved—first, she licked her hoof and gently patted out the last bit of smoking hair on her mane, before she carefully set the tray aside, and threw her hooves around Vinyls neck, dragging her onto the bed. She buried her face against the white neck and did her best to muffle her sobs, though she was sure some escaped.

“Tavi? T-tavi, uh. You ok?” Vinyl mumbled, hugging her gingerly. “Please talk to me babe. This is…kinda freaky.”

Octavia sniffled, and managed to hiccup, “I thought you’d left. Thought you were…the thing…too big or something. Or, or just leaving.” She was barely coherent and knew it, but couldn’t make the words flow and march in the right order any better. She felt Vinyl stiffen slightly before she cuddled against her, forelegs wrapped tight around Octavia.

“That’s…nah. No way.” Vinyl nuzzled against her head gently. “Like…hell. Tavi, I ain’t gonna say it’s not…I dunno, weird, or something, but I’m not leaving. Not for…this. Not you.”

Octavia sniffled and hugged her tighter for a moment. “I love you Vinyl.” She said softly.

“I love you too, Tavi.”

-|-

Octavia chewed a waffle slowly. The tears were gone, though she still felt somewhat fragile. But she hadn’t been about to let the breakfast Vinyl had made for her go to waste. Honestly, even if it had tasted like free range grazing land, she’d have eaten every bite. That it was delicious was just a fringe benefit.

Vinyl fidgeted next to her, nibbling a syrup soaked and dripping mess of a waffle herself, and kept shooting Octavia an odd look. A bit of an emotional wreck at the moment, but Octavia was composed enough to read the questions Vinyl was fiercely suppressing, and her marefriends desire to not make her uncomfortable or badger her for information only made her heart ache in an entirely different, and positive way.

She swallowed and considered for a moment before saying, “I was rather overweight as a child.” She ate another bite as Vinyl started, shocked at the answer to a question she hadn’t asked. She held up a hoof to try and forestall Vinyls protests, but it was a second too late.

“Tavi, you ain’t gotta talk about this. Like, I’m curious but I don’t—“

“Vinyl?” Octavia smiled at her. “It’s ok. I’ve shared it enough in group, and…I suppose I should trust you enough now, after…well, this morning.”

Vinyl fell silent, mouth slowly closing, before nodding once. “If you want to, I guess.” She said slowly.

Octavia nodded back. “Yeah. Anyway…yeah. I was pretty chunky. I’d hole up in my room with a Shakesmare compendium and a bag of fried oats, or potato chips, or some such just about every afternoon. I was never very athletic, and it got rather bad in my early teens. I think it might have influenced my parents decision regarding my instrument. Maybe they thought I’d lose some weight if I was hauling a cello around all the time.” Her voice went a bit dry near the end before she chuckled.

“It didn’t work out that way. It just made me pant that much more anything I had to climb a flight of steps or two. Anything above the third story was an epic struggle indeed.” She shrugged, taking another bite of her waffle and spearing a bit of strawberry along with it. “So, my parents decided I needed a personal trainer, for the good of my health.” She looked up at the ceiling for a moment as memories tried to lay siege to her emotional balance.

She pushed them down with long practice and sighed. “Honestly, they were probably right to a degree. My weight was out of hand, and my diet was absolutely horrible.” She couldn’t hold back a bit of a smirk. “Even worse than yours when we first met.” she said, unable to resist a bit of prodding. She got a mature response: Vinyl stuck her tongue out and threw a syrupy strawberry at her head, where it stuck.

Giggling, she snagged it and popped it into her mouth, chewing thoughtfully. “Anyway, they hired this mare. They always wanted the best for me, you understand, so they hired an athlete who’d made it to the Equestria Games in her youth and regularly trained talented athletes. Unfortunately…”

She shook her head. “Ms. Glory was not the best choice for a young mare with no athletic experience and whose view of healthy foods at the time can best be described as 'less than excellent'. I’m sure she meant well, but she laid into me like I was one of her full time students and was not shy about letting me know when I failed to live up to her expectations. “ A pause. “Which was pretty much all the time. And she was quite explicit in exactly how I was failing.”

Vinyl opened her mouth, but Octavia shook her head. “No worries hon. Just let me finish, and we can take turns calling her a bitch.” She said with a small smile. “There honestly not a whole lot more to it anyway.”

She looked upwards, gathering her thoughts, and said, quietly, “At the time, I didn’t deal with criticism very well. Not with my music, and certainly not with my weight. As it was, my response after awhile was a sort of nervous breakdown. I stopped eating almost entirely, and when I inevitable broke down and binged on all my favorite foods…well. I’d do practically anything to avoid another scolding from Ms. Glory, another diatribe about my lack of self control and laziness.”

She gave a short shrug, an returned her gaze to Vinyl. “From there, it….well, just spiraled out of control. The rest, you know or can probably put together from my little outburst last night.” she smiled slightly, looking down. “I’m…it’s not something I’m proud of, of course. It’s not easy to talk about. But…thank you for listening.” she said softly.

Vinyl sat, silent for a long few moments as she absorbed the tale Octavia had told her. She leaned over and nestled against the mare. After another moment, she finally spoke.

“If I ever meet that mare, I’m gonna buck her in the face as hard as I can.”

Octavia rolled her eyes, though she thought it was a bit sweet. “No worries, darling. My parents let her go when I lost the majority of the weight. They didn’t start getting suspicious about my problem until I was rail thin enough to make a professional model look positively chubby. Even then, it wasn’t until my…ah. My hospital visit that they forced me to start getting counseling.”

“Thanks for telling me all this,” Vinyl said, staring at her syrup soaked waffle with a curiously thoughtful expression on her face. “Just. Wow.” she mumbled, nibbling her food. “You said even Strings doesn’t know?”

Octavia nodded in response. “I haven’t told anyone other than the group before you. I always felt…too ashamed, you know?”

Vinyl quirked an eyebrow at her and said, tone as serious as it could be, “I don’t think I know the meaning of that word.”

Octavia blinked, and burst out laughing, giggling helplessly. "Of course you don't. " she snorted. "Why would you?" She smiled at Vinyl with a shake of her head. She looked up, and sighed. "I'm lucky to have you."

Vinyl grinned at her. "Yeah. We're both pretty damn lucky. "