• Published 4th Jan 2016
  • 3,212 Views, 144 Comments

The View from Rock Bottom - Fickle Wood



Meet Jack Taylor, a brother, son, and self-defined psychic. Jack is about to begin a long ordeal in humility and perseverance, one he may not very well survive without some friends, which is something that’ll be hard as a mare named Berry Punch.

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Wayward Plans 1.3

I hadn’t wasted my time waiting for a reasonable hour to find someone to speak with. My time had been filled with filling a couple garbage bags full of bottles, and I found said bags within a laundry room behind the door I incorrectly thought the backdoor. A door in the laundry room did lead to a back alley though, and I left the bags of empty bottles I collected back there. Cleaning someone else's house was a little strange, but the fact I made progress on something felt good, even if it had been something trivial. I had even washed dishes and done laundry before I called it quits and rested on a couch in the living room. It was close to six in the morning according to a grandfather clock in the living room, which I had started during my bottle cleaning, which automatically adjusted itself to the correct time once I got the pendulum swinging, something that I had just accepted after a moment of bewilderment.

It was time to think about what I had avoided thinking about for the past three hours, my assault on Corona. I had checked to see if she was still outside after my rage dissipated to the point I felt in control of myself and found she was gone, so I concluded I hadn’t hurt her that bad. The biggest problem with the assault was that I didn’t know what had happened to me. Sure, the memory I had seen from Corona looked like it was about to head toward Berry being taken advantage of, but I didn’t care about that. Not that I was insensitive about rape, my ability had made me experience a few memories of it when I didn’t have as much control over my ability, both as victim and perpetrator. The only thing that came to mind was the green I had seen the memory end with and the fact the Corona’s magic was green. Was it Corona’s fault for what happened? Had she tried something?

A flame shone from a lamppost outside, and the surreal moonlight had disappeared completely, which left the lamppost an island of light in a sea of darkness. I was curious as to how long the darkness outside would last since it seemed like they would have better lighting for the darkness if it lasted very long. My plan was still to get help from Twilight, with finding out about Discord and the E.P.A distant backup plans, but nothing could be done until the sun rose. Both the grandfather clock rung out and the lamppost outside went out at the same time, which was six in the morning according to the grandfather clock, then immediately followed by the first sign of sunlight I had seen since yesterday. That was too perfect… Bah, the cycle of the day and night isn’t important, getting home is.

I removed myself from the couch, and then picked up the saddlebags I had laid on the nearby coffee table. On my way toward the front door, I stopped to look at the stairs, something I had done several times the past couple hours. Something seemed amiss whenever I thought about the stairs like I had forgotten something about them, but I pushed the thought out of my mind and focused on something that mattered. Katherine.

I unlocked the door and walked outside to meet with the fresh air of the morning. The hours I spent making the house a little more livable had made me less reluctant to use my mouth for things. Turning around, I removed the keys from my saddlebags, locked the door, and then placed them back in the saddlebags all with my mouth. All of the houses looked very similar, so I made sure to note the house’s number of 565 before I left, though I hoped I wouldn’t need to return here. Unsure of which direction the castle was, I chose a direction and went with it. As I left the street, I noted the street’s name, which made me groan. North Clip Clop Drive… Why do they name things like this?! My annoyance was short lived and I began my quest to find a princess.

(0) (0)

I didn’t know what is was, but I felt sick. The feelings had come about once the ponies started coming out of their houses, but beyond that, I hadn’t a clue what was wrong. I swore whatever it was seemed to change with the ponies I passed, as it shifted between a weariness throughout my body and a nausea feeling in my stomach, but the worst and most prevalent felt like I was being stabbed in the chest. I had dropped my goal of looking for Twilight’s castle and resorted to asking for directions to a clinic or hospital, without any success.

“Hi, could you—”

“Already heard about it,” a mint green unicorn said, and had a two-tone light blue and white mane, alongside an eye color that reminded me of the sun in how it shifted between yellow and orange. She looked annoyed by me, which was accompanied by strong feelings of weariness and nausea that stopped me from saying anything further before she passed by, but I did notice her tattoo was a lyre.

Fuck! What is going on with this body? I stopped and closed my eyes, then did a deep breathing exercise. The weariness diminished, alongside the other things I was feeling, but they were still there. I noticed the few ponies that were out this early did what the other ponies had done yesterday, in that they actively avoided me by switching over to the other side of the street.

One pony that was coming toward me wasn’t trying to avoid me, but that was because she had her eyes closed and seemed to be more interested in taking the scent of the morning air in. Maybe a pony like Berry would be nicer? What did Berry call them and Corona call Berry? Earth ponies? The mare coming toward me was an earth pony, had a pale yellow coat, and a raspberry mane with a slightly lighter streak of raspberry in it. I decided to intercept her before she opened her eyes.

“Miss, I need some directions to the nearest—” The mare’s green eyes shot open with anger in them, followed by a sharp and burning pain in my chest, which stopped me from saying anything more.

She let out a groan. “Your house is the other way, Berry,” she said, and walked by me without another word, but I did see that her tattoo was a rose.

I held a forehoof to my chest and fell to my rear. I tried another deep breathing exercise, but the pain didn’t go away as quickly as the weariness and nausea had. I closed my eyes to think, and hoped I could forget the pain by getting lost in my thoughts. Is it a heart condition? Guess the weariness might fall into that, but I don’t think nausea would. Food poisoning? I didn’t check the date on those baked beans and they tasted alright, but poison would affect the heart. My thoughts were interrupted by a new feeling, though I realized it was two intertwined.

The first feeling seemed to chase the pain and the other unpleasant feelings away, but it made me feel empty, though I felt like I could get used to it over time and decided to call the feeling Zero, due to how it felt like it destroyed everything and left a void. The second feeling felt really good as it soothed and energized me, but it was weak compared to the first feeling and I decided to call it One, due to how it made me feel whole, even though it was marginal. The strength of Zero and One went back and forth, but One seemed to thankfully be the winner after a bit. I basked in One’s feeling and heard the sound of hooves walking toward me.

“Um… Berry? Do you need help? Not that I’m judging your lifestyle, or think you are helpless. Just that you look like you could use some physical help, since you look like you are in pain and—”

I opened my eyes to see who the sweet female voice belonged to, which seemed to quiet her down. She was an earth pony, had a butter-yellow coat, and a long light pink mane that obscured one of her cyan eyes. Zero seemed to grow again with this mare’s nervousness and it reminded me that I wasn’t well. “Yeah, I’m not feeling too good. I think there might be something seriously wrong with me. Is there a clinic or something you could help me get to?”

“Are you sure it's that serious? I could just help you home.”

“I’m sure.” I stood up from the ground and felt sore all over, but One dulled everything else out, even Zero. I took a step forward, but I misstepped and began to fall. The mare in front of me reacted quickly and moved forward to catch me before I fell. The embrace the mare caught me in gave me a good look at her tattoo, which was a trio of pink butterflies with turquoise bodies. My mind was spinning and One grew to the point that all others feelings disappeared

She steadied me with her forehooves, then took a step back. “Are you sure you’re okay to walk?”

I looked at her, a smile on my face. My thoughts were lost in whatever I was experiencing and I had a desire to do only one thing. It didn’t matter that one of her eyes was covered, which would normally require concentration, as my ability felt as if it just needed for me to want to use it and I did without a thought. The world faded away, slower than the other times, and I saw the mare’s face fill with worry.

(0) (0)

What was that? Magic? The feeling that I had called One in my addled state of mind was gone, and I was actually glad it was, at least until I woke up. Reliving this memory would give me time to prepare for the euphoria, though how one prepares for a euphoria was beyond me. This world seemed to have no end in sight to what it would throw at me, but it just meant I needed to adapt faster and be more resilient. Hopefully, I have something to go back home to after I convince someone, but I can’t worry about that right now. Need to focus on what I can do in the here and now.

A butter-yellow muzzle and a light pink mane over one eye came into view, with rows of apple trees and a farmhouse beyond them. The evening sun was lowering, which gave the place a picturesque look. The mare walked at a slow pace along the dirt path and seemed to just enjoy being here. This pony felt different than the other ones I had experienced so far, but I couldn’t tell what is was exactly. Her body looked just like Berry’s, at least from the four pony types I had seen so far, but she felt different from Berry’s body like she was connected to everything around her.

The sound of someone shouting and drawing near was heard, but it didn’t seem to alarm this mare and it brought a smile to her face instead. The was something strange about the voice and I realized it was paired with the sound of a dog barking, both completely in sync with each other. The reason for this became clear as a brown and white dog bounded into sight, what the dog was doing was another blow to my sanity.

“Fluttershy! Fluttershy!” the dog said, enthusiastically, with a southern accent and female tone, but it had also just sounded like barks to me. The dog bounded on the mare that seemed to be named Fluttershy and licked her face repeatedly.

This all seemed to be normal for Fluttershy, and I really just needed to start accepting that anything could happen. “Winona—” Winona continued her slobbery assault as Fluttershy tried to get the dog under control. “Down, girl.”

Winona seemed to calm down a little and ended her greeting, but she still looked full of energy as they continued toward the farmhouse. “I have so many things to tell you about, Fluttershy! Like yesterday, I saw a rabbit trying to steal from the garden and chased him straight out of the farm.”

“Did the bunny have a blue jacket?” Oh, I hope Peter isn’t getting into trouble again.

“It did!” Winona did a backflip with her exclamation.

I’ll need to remember to talk to Josephine about Peter… again. “Feeling up for a race, Winona?”

“Yes!”

Fluttershy picked up her pace to a gallop and headed toward the farmhouse, while Winona went into a run. I could tell right away that she was holding herself back, that she was just matching Winona’s speed and trailing behind her on purpose. The race ended with them running through an arch with vines on it and Winona the winner, though only because I was sure that Fluttershy had let Winona win. Fluttershy hadn’t even broken a sweat, while Winona was panting heavily.

“I…” She stopped to catch her breath. “win.” Winona said, oblivious to the fact she had only been allowed to win, then continued to pant heavily.

"You sure did," Fluttershy said, in the same way as coddling a child.

Fluttershy looked at the farmhouse with a fondness for it. The house looked exactly like a barn right up to being painted red, but also had decorative apples painted here and there. The building was two stories tall, with what looked like a bell tower that had been turned into a room at the top. Fluttershy patted Winona on the head as she passed her and walked toward the horizontally divided door to enter the house. Home.

The delicious smell of something cooking filled the air inside. The room Fluttershy had entered from outside was a rustic living room with typical living room items. Fluttershy moved through the living room, passed the stairs leading to the second floor, and into a kitchen where a stallion was cooking at a stove. The stallion was an earth pony, had a slate gray coat, and a dull green mane, that was more horse-like in how narrow it was going down the back of his head.

Fluttershy walked up behind and a little to the side of the stallion, which gave me a good look at his tattoo of a single gold apple with a metallic shine. “Dad?” Fluttershy said, in a very meek tone.

"Hmm?" The stallion turned around and I saw his smoky gray eyes fill with joy. "Shy!" the stallion said, his southern accent sounding very smooth like a southern gentleman. He moved forward and gave her a hug with both forelegs.

“Dad, I was wondering, if it wasn't too much trouble that is, and if it were I would completely understand—”

“Yeah, you’re welcome to have supper with us tonight, like any other night.” He ended the hug, then moved backward a bit. “You’re always welcome in your home.”

“Thanks…” She idly circled a forehoof and held her head low. “Is there anything I can do to help?” she said, and lifted her head to give her father her full attention.

“Table still needs to be set, otherwise, supper is about ready.” He turned to finish up what he was doing at the stove.

“Um…”

“It’ll be five since Di is having a sleepover with her friends at Rainbow Dash’s. Unless AJ said she was stopping by also?” I heard hopefulness in his question.

“No… sorry.” She pulled out five sets of plates, bowls, and glasses from a cabinet, then headed toward an adjacent dining room.

“It ain’t your fault, Shy.” He raised his voice slightly to make sure he was heard. “I know you tried your hardest with AJ. She’ll come around one of these days. You got her to at least come home during the holidays in the past two years, and even got her to come to the family reunion last year.”

Hopefully, I can get her to have a family dinner at home on a monthly basis soon. Best not push it during the holidays though, so I’ll wait until January. Fluttershy finished setting the table and returned to the kitchen. “How has Piña been doing?”

“Well…” He turned the stove off. “I’m not really sure. I try to get her to open up more, but Ma has better luck than I do. The way she acts, it’s like we're raising both you and Big Mac again, what with how reserved she is and how little she speaks. Di and her friends invite Piña on their campaigns all the time, but she rarely says yes. Just ain’t right for a filly to spend all her free time drawing by herself.”

“Is she still drawing what she was drawing? I know Quack says it’s a perfectly natural psychological behavior, and Toola-Roola says she is just full of creativity, but…” Oh, I shouldn’t judge her. I just wish her drawing weren’t so scary.

“Yup, still the same. Well, not the same in quality, as Toola-Roola’s art lessons have been paying off, and the smiles she has going to and coming back from the lessons are worth the money alone.” He walked over to a horizontally split door that had its top half open.

“Well, if she is happy…”

A metal triangle hung from a thread next to the door, with a metal beater that also hung from its own thread alongside it. Fluttershy’s father picked them both up and held them both outside the door. “Soup’s on, everypony!” he said, very loudly, which caused Fluttershy to pull back ears, as he rang the triangle with vigor. After about half a minute of ringing, he placed the triangle and beater back where they had been. “When Ma gets in with Big Mac, you should ask her about the stories Piña tells her.”

“Piña is writing stories? What are they about?”

“Well, she ain’t writing anything yet.” He gestured with a forehoof for Fluttershy to come closer, which she did. “But I got a good idea for a Hearth’s Warming gift. A typewriter,” he said, quietly, into Fluttershy’s ear, then stepped back from Fluttershy. “As for what her stories are about, they are about the monsters she draws.”

“So… they are horror stories?” Oh, I can barely handle the pictures as it is.

“You’d think, but from what Ma tells me, the monsters are all peaceful and act pretty much like ponies.”

“Well, that’s nice.” Nice to know she still has some innocence left in her. I felt a smile form on Fluttershy’s face.

He let out a contented breath. "You should come around more often. Need more of your sweet face around here." He looked at her with a loving look, and he reminded me slightly of my father for a brief moment. "So, what have you been doing lately?" he said, and went toward some cabinets.

"Nothing much really. No new animals since I was here last. I had a picnic today with Twilight, and I brought along some baby bunnies to cheer her up." She watched the stallion take a couple large bowls and a gravy boat out of the cabinet. "May I help?"

“Sure.” They both went over to the stove and the stallion set the dishes down on the floor. Fluttershy picked up one of the bowls by the edge with her mouth, and then the stallion spooned mashed potatoes into it. “So what had Twilight down today? Yesterday?”

Once the bowl was filled, Fluttershy transferred the bowl to her back and headed toward the dining room. “Berry…” The name was said with a sad tone.

I heard a heavy sigh from the stallion, as Fluttershy placed the bowl she was carrying on the dining room table. “What did that fool mare do this time.”

Fluttershy turned around and headed back toward her father. “Well, I don’t know the details, but Spike said Berry showed up at the castle around midnight and wouldn’t leave. I think Twilight thought Berry was too tipsy to just teleport her home to bed alone, so Spike sent a note to the police and they took care of her.” She picked up another bowl, and then the stallion spooned collared greens into it.

“Well, it was the anniversary,” he said, solemnly, as Fluttershy transferred the bowl to her back, then headed toward the dinner table. “Still, no excuse for upsettin’ Twilight, that mare has enough to deal with as it is.”

“How did Mom, Piña, and Diamond fare yesterday? I would’ve come by, but the anniversary is one of my busiest times of the year, in both helping ponies cope and adoptions for pets.” Fluttershy placed the bowl next to the other bowl she had brought to the table.

“Ma spent most of the day working with Big Mac and didn’t say much about it. As for Piña and Di, they went to Sugarcube Corner, with Sweetie Belle and Scootaloo.”

“I feel bad about it sometimes though, that the only time I can be outgoing is when everypony else is miserable. It makes me feel even worse that it doesn’t really hit me, even though we lost family too.” Fluttershy returned to her father and picked up the final bowl.

“It’s alright, Shy. We all weren’t that close to Uncle or Aunt Orange, not even Ma was, and Uncle Orange was her brother, but it hits her hard since he was the last in her family and had been trying to connect with her after their father died. Day makes me think about a lot of ponies really, don’t matter if they were family or not.” He spooned a very colorful vegetable stew into the final bowl, though what it was I didn’t know.

Fluttershy took in a deep whiff of the dish before she transferred it to her back. “The jambalaya smells really good tonight, Dad. Did you change the recipe?” she said, and went to place the final bowl at the table.

“I may have picked up some spices on my last pie run down south,” he said, and I heard the sound of something metal being filled.

Fluttershy placed the bowl of jambalaya on the table and then turned around to see her father had filled the gravy boat himself. “I… Um…” She looked back at the table. Serving utensils. She looked back at her father, who had a knowing smile on his face.

“I can get the rest from here, Shy. Go get Piña from her room. Swear, that girl gets so lost drawing, I have to remind her to eat some days.”

Fluttershy turned and walked back toward the living room, but stopped in the archway between the two rooms. “Thanks…” she said, quietly, and I wasn’t sure her father would hear her.

“For supper?” I heard her father say, confusion clear in his voice.

“No…” She turned around to look at her father, and she began to shed tears. “Well, yes, but for everything else as well. I don’t know where Piña, Diamond, or I would be if you hadn’t taken us into your home. I… just felt I had to say that after being around so many sad ponies yesterday.” She lowered her head and closed her eyes, all while the tears still flowed.

I heard hoofsteps, then Fluttershy was embraced in a hug. She opened her eyes to the dull green mane and slate gray coat of her father. “No, Shy. Thank you.” Fluttershy’s back began to feel wet with what I was sure were tears. “Every day we’ve had you in our lives has been a blessing. We may never know who your real parents are, but they saw fit to give you two things before they left you at our door. Your name, and a family that would love and take care of you.”

Fluttershy closed her eyes again and the memory faded away.

(0) (0)

My eyes were closed, and the sound of hooves galloping filled my hearing. I felt cold and my head was pounding, all while I felt something moving under me. With difficulty, I opened my eyes to see the ground swiftly moving by below some butter-yellow hooves. Butter should slide, not run. The rest of my body seemed unresponsive and my thoughts were muddled. I tried to think, but the pain in my head and biting cold I felt throughout my body was too distracting.

The body beneath me stopped suddenly, I heard the sound of something sliding, then the ride continued forward. Dirt changed to solid blue flooring like magic, which I stared at with amazement, not that I could stare at anything else. I heard frantic sounds that I thought were words, but I knew words only existed in alphabet soup. The sound of more hooves was heard and then my head was lifted up.

A horsey with a pale pink mane, a white coat, and sapphire blue eyes looked at me, then put her forehoof to my forehead, though my attention was focused on the little hat with a red plus sign she wore. She thinks she's people. I didn’t think she liked me looking at her hat because her expression changed and she pulled out a very pretty piece of crystal, then put the crystal in my mouth. I tried to eat the crystal, but my mouth wouldn’t respond. After a moment, the crystal began to beep and the mare pulled it out of my mouth, which caused her eyes to go wide, while mine got heavier and lowered.

Nurse Horse shouted something and the ride continued forward until it stopped again, and I was lifted onto a bed of some sort, so they must of saw I was getting tired and needed a nap. My view changed from looking at the solid blue floor to looking at a green wall with white lines that separated the green; I hoped all the green would be together one day. More horses began to surround me as the ride started up again, but I couldn’t name their colors and the colors couldn’t name me. The horses touched me everywhere, one even opened my eyes and shined a light on them. These horses were bad at putting people to bed, but it didn’t matter, my eyes knew I was tired and continued to close.

I felt myself be lifted up onto to something, then I slid into a crystal palace. The crystal lit up and filled what was left of my vision with a pretty light, but it couldn’t shine the darkness inside away, no matter how pretty it got. Overall, I thought the ride had been fairly fun and would definitely take Katherine on it later. My eyes closed as a loud sound filled my hearing, and then there was nothing.

(0) (0)

I awoke on my back and felt like I was tucked into bed, but I also felt something on my chest, and something else stuck in my right foreleg. My memory was hazy and I tried to piece it together. I was going to Twilight’s castle and… I felt sick. That butter-yellow mare came along and then I went to a farm. No, I used my ability and Fluttershy was the one on a farm, since I learned her name… from a dog? There was also some crystal at some point, which shined like a rainbow. There were other details from the Fluttershy memory I witnessed, but they could wait for later, I needed to find out what happened to me.

I opened my eyes to find myself in a familiar sight, a hospital room. Spent enough time visiting Mom at work to know one of these, but looks and feels better than the one she worked at. The bed I was in was surprisingly comfortable, alongside the pillow under my head. I was tucked into the bed on my back and my forelegs were above the sheet and left free.A couple wires were hooked up to my chest and went toward a nearby heart monitor, but my attention was caught on what was hooked up to my right foreleg, a glowing blue tube connected to a glowing blue bag, which hung from a pole that a blood bag would normally hang from. Well, I suppose that could be blood… because why the hell not. I couldn’t care less about what blood looks like here.

The walls were a forest green with white silhouette trees and the ceiling was a sky blue with a dome light in the center, while the flooring was a grass green linoleum floor. On the wall was an analog clock that read it was just past noon, though it lacked a time of day indicator, so it could’ve just as well been just past midnight. A sofa was against one wall, which had my saddlebags hooked over the back, an armchair in a corner, and a nightstand next to the bed. The room was square and lacked a window, which prevented me from figuring out if it was day or night, but had two opened doorways. One of the doorways looked into a dark room that I was certain was a bathroom, while the other doorway looked to be a hallway with its solid blue floor, green walls with white lines that separated the green, and another door across the hall that was closed.

I didn’t want to be here anymore, so I freed myself from the sheets and searched the bed for a call button. I found the call button, made from a crystal of all things, had been tucked in with me and pressed it to hopefully get answers as to what happened to me. After a moment, I heard the sound of hoofsteps in the hallway outside, and then a mare came into the room. The mare had a white coat, sapphire blue eyes, and a light pink mane in a bun with a nurse’s cap atop her head. The nurse’s cap had a red cross with hearts in the corners of the cross, and I saw that her tattoo was the same symbol as she walked toward the sofa. She sat on the sofa with all four legs tucked under her and didn’t say a word while she stared at me, though I felt like her stare was a judging one.

“So…” Man, this is awkward. “What happened to me?” I said, legitimately curious what they had found out. Didn’t seem like they had figured out I was an outsider though… at least that is what I was still going with until proven otherwise.

“Why don’t you tell me what you remember and I’ll fill in the blanks.” she said, and her tone betrayed no hint of emotion.

“Well, this started all started yesterday when I woke up in jail as the pony you know as Berry Punch. You see, I’m an outsider, at least I think that is the proper term, pretty sure I’m from another world. Anyway—”

“One moment.” The mare removed herself from the sofa and walked out of the room. After a minute she returned with a notepad and pen, then sat back on the sofa. She pushed a button on the pen, wrote something down, and then looked at me. “Continue.”

“Um…” Weird. “So like I was saying, I’m not actually Berry Punch, at least not mentally. My name is Jack Taylor and I’ve been trying to get someone to believe me. It’s just, the fact that I am a pony with as much credibility as a tabloid is making this hard.”

“Actually, most tabloids are more reliable than Berry Punch.” I wasn’t sure if she was believing me or humoring me, but I was leaning toward the latter as she continued to write.

“Now, what I’m going to tell you next I don’t tell many people. Everyone I’ve ever told about it thought I was a liar, crazy, or a stalker. So please, keep an open mind with it and everything else so far.”

“I’m all ears.” Both of her ears stood up straight, which reminded me of the fact my ears were unresponsive and limp.

“Well, I’ve had this ability for 12 years and it developed right after I left home. This ability I have is to look into other’s eyes and relive their memories. It was maddening at first, I couldn’t look someone in the eyes without it activating and nobody would believe me. I learned to control it over time, but I still slip every now and then.”

“Un-huh. So, tell me what happened yesterday.”

“Well, I… How long have I been out?” I had no clue if yesterday meant the first day I was here or the second and I had lost an entire day.

“You’ve been out since Miss Fluttershy brought you in this morning.”

“So, it’s still the same day?”

“Yes.”

“Good.” At least I haven’t lost a day. “So yeah, yesterday I woke up in jail as Berry Punch. Was let out of the jail by Due Process who I… Due Process is the name of the dark gray police pony, right?”

“Yes…” She looked at me strangely and wrote something done quicker than she had been writing everything else so far. I had figured out by this point that she was probably writing down everything I said. “That is his name.”

“Really need to stop interrupting myself. Anyway, I made Due Process mad when I tried to convince him I could see his memories. Left the police station and met Surprise, who took me to Princess Twilight. At the castle, I literally bumped into that white mare named Rarity and made her mad. Once Surprise and I were in the castle, we met that dragon named Spike and Princess Twilight the winged unicorn—”

“Alicorn.” The mare said, and the one-word interruption confused me.

“What?”

“Princess Twilight, alongside Princess Celestia and Princess Luna, are all alicorns”

“Okay.” Didn’t really care, but guess it might help to not accidentally insult royalty again. “Long story short, I made both Spike and Princess Twilight mad.”

“Shocker.” The sarcasm was heavy in her voice. “So is that everything? Didn’t just complete the day by breaking a Surprise Swear with Surprise. Just for completeness sake?”

“Yes, no, and no…” Well, I see where this is going.

She pushed the button on the pen and then threaded the pen through the binding of the notepad. “Well, I’m glad we got all the plop out of the way. Now tell me what you took.”

“Took? I haven’t taken anything!” Anger was building within me. I had just told this mare everything and she had written it off. Literally!

“If your mother could see you now she would be ashamed to call you her daughter.” The mare placed the notebook with a pen in it on the sofa, removed herself from the sofa to stand, and then stared at me with anger. “Berry, the facts are this! Miss Fluttershy brought you in this morning barely responsive! You had a fever that could’ve killed you and very well almost did! You are lucky we figured out your body was overloaded with magic! Without our expertise in all manner of magical maladies, you would be dead! Now tell me what you took because we can’t find a trace of anything in your system, not even alcohol, and I know that can’t be right!”

“Sounds like you aren’t experienced enough to tell when someone is telling you the truth!’ I did a deep breathing exercise to get my anger under control, I didn’t need to assault more ponies. “Look, I have a deep respect for nurses. My mother was one and—”

“Your mother was a martial artist!”

My anger began to grow again. “I. Am. Not. Berry! Can’t you fucking get that through your damn thick skull?!” I hardly ever cursed or yelled at someone, but I was angry, not just with this mare, but everything so far. I felt like this should’ve ended yesterday, that Twilight should’ve used her magic to access my mind.

Her anger broke and she looked confused. “Fucking? Dam? You aren’t even making sense now with what you are saying.” She did a deep breathing exercise and her facial features took on a pleading look. “Please, Berry. I just want to help. I couldn’t still call myself Drop’s friend if I didn’t do everything in my power to help either of her daughters. Just tell me what overloaded your body with magical energy.”

She reminded me of my mother, maybe it was just the fact she was a nurse, but it quelled my anger for the moment. “I am telling you the truth. Maybe what happened is because I’m an outsider. I don’t know anything about this thing you call magic in your world, other than the fact that reality itself is constantly redefined.”

The look on her face changed to one of resolve. “Berry, if you do not tell me, then I will see to it that you are admitted to the mental ward. I’ll even try to get you on suicide watch with a straight jacket and padded room! Don’t you dare think these idle threats either! I’ve worked at this hospital longer than anyone else on staff. And I know I could get any of the staff to do what I want when it comes to you.”

Nobody! Fucking! Threatens! Me! What little respect I had for this mare was gone. My anger reached a fevered pitch and I saw the words I wanted to say clearly in my mind.

“All it’ll take is a short visit to Quack and he’ll—”

I stared her straight in the eyes. “Shut up!” Her eyes went wide and she ceased to talk. “What is this glowing blue stuff flowing into me through the tube?” I said, not taking my eyes off her eyes.

“Pure mana, to replace all the magic we removed from you when we saved your life.” Her eyes were distant and voice monotone, but I was too angry to care why.

“Will I be fine without a complete transfusion?”

“Yes, but your natural earth pony abilities will be weakened, alongside any and all talents, including your special talent for several days.” The distant look remained in her eyes, and her voice stayed monotone.

I pulled the needle out of my foreleg and dropped it, letting the glowing blue liquid drip onto the floor. “ You will forget our entire conversation and all notions of committing me to the mental ward, or I will make your life as miserable as I possibly can.” I doubted this mare had the backbone to carry out her threats, with how quickly she caved under my intimidation, but an idle threat of my own couldn’t hurt. At least, I thought it was an idle threat, but I felt that deep down I meant every word.

I removed the heart monitor wires from my chest, got out of the bed, and then headed toward the sofa; the mare didn’t say a word or react at all to what I did. I took my saddlebags off of the sofa and then equipped them. The notebook with a pen in its binding seemed useful, so I put it in one of the saddlebags. I walked toward the doorway leading into the hallway but stopped in the doorway.

“Thank you,” I said, not expecting a response as I left.

Author's Note:

Proofreaders/Pre-Readers:
Busstop
Topaz Moon

This chapter came about after I noticed how little attention and use I made of the planned Fluttershy appearance in the original chapter three. I also had Jack much more easily brush off the supposed illness, which will become clearer later on, if you haven't figured out what is going on yet. Fluttershy became an earth pony to balance out the ratio of pony types in my Mane 6 pretty much, and I wanted her to have a closer relationship with Applejack.

Last Grammar Update: 2016-10-03