• Published 15th Dec 2016
  • 1,113 Views, 22 Comments

EverFree: Finding my Place - DragonsHeart

Shepard is stuck in Equestria, with no idea how to get back home. Will she find a way back home or will Equestria be her new home?

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Chapter 5: Working Things Out : S4E03

Shepard has not been seen since the festival, and, once again, no amount of searching has found her. Since she was last seen in Canterlot, she could be anywhere in Equestria, which depresses Twilight further. She has managed to deal with it by getting absorbed in her research about the chest from the Tree of Harmony, but it hasn’t been going well.

“Urgh!” Twilight groans, throwing the book away, startling Spike as he walks upstairs as well as destroying his duster.

“What's wrong, Twilight?” he asks, staring at the remains of his duster.

“I've gone through every book in Ponyville, Spike, and there isn't a single mention of the mysterious chest that came from the Tree of Harmony, nor anything about keys to unlock it!” Twilight explains, getting off her haunches and looking through another book. “But something tells me that opening it is pretty important,” she guesses, putting down the book before flying up a book pile and opening the top one. “I hope Princess Celestia has some ideas. If the library in Canterlot doesn't have anything, I… I don't know where else to look!” Twilight put the book back on the pile, causing it all to fall on Spike.

“Ahh!” Spike yells as he gets covered in books. Twilight winces. He crawls out of the book pile, suddenly belching and a letter from Celestia arriving.

“My dearest Twilight, while it would be perfectly lovely to have you in Canterlot once more, I have another option in mind much closer to Ponyville. As you know, the ancient castle that I once shared with Princess Luna lies mostly in ruins, deep in the Everfree Forest. But if you look carefully, you may find a book that could prove helpful to your research, hidden somewhere in what's left of the castle library.” Twilight reads aloud, before putting the letter away, “Looks like we’re heading to the forest now.”

“But still no news on Shepard though, I guess Celestia hasn’t heard anything either,” Spike mentions, tidying up some of the books, before then noticing Twilight rubbing her front hooves awkwardly, “You've told her, right?”

“No, not yet,” Twilight says, shame in her voice.

“But why? Finding Shepard would be easier if the princesses would help us,” Spike says, confused.

“But if I did, I may have to explain everything wrong I did, how I almost killed her, how she shot me, or even how bad of a pony I was to her,” Twilight explains, hanging her head, “I just know this is all somehow my fault again.”

“You don’t know that, Twilight. Shepard has got a lot on her plate, and I’m sure Celestia would understand,” Spike says, trying to comfort the sad alicorn.

“Thanks Spike, but how can we be sure. I know I must have somehow hurt Shepard,” Twilight sighs, looking over the books, “I looked all over for her and I couldn’t find her... Maybe I didn’t look hard enough.”

“Twilight, you looked until you were physically and mentally exhausted,” Spike says, patting her back, “You couldn’t have looked harder... now you said something about the Everfree?”

“Yes,” Twilight says, taking a deep breath, “Let’s head to the old castle of Celestia...”

Pinkie Pie hops through the Everfree Forest, looking for bluebells, when a cold breeze blows past.

“Brrr, cold!” Pinkie mentions, wrapping herself in the cloth she brought to carry the bluebells, “Hmmm, now who should I invite to my finish ringing the school bell party? Well, beside everypony? Twilight could use some cheering up though, the Shepard problem is still bothering her...”

Suddenly there's the sound of something large moving, followed by the sound of shots, and then a giant snake drops dead on the path in front of her. A triumphant armour clad figure climbing over the dead beast, holding a gun with her magic...

“Hi Shepard! I was just thinking about you!” Pinkie yells cheerfully, dashing towards the armoured pony.

Shepard, just noticing the incoming pink pony, tries to run away. But Pinkie, at that moment, turned out to be quicker, Shepard suddenly finding herself tangled in the cloth Pinkie was wearing, and before she can escape, Pinkie manages to steal her helmet, making it impossible for her to run away now.

“We’ve been looking everywhere for you Shepard!” Pinkie tuts, waving her hoof, “Twilight has been worried sick.”

“Pinkie... give me back my helmet,” Shepard says, untangling herself from the cloth.

“Nope, now you’re going to come back with me to Ponyville, and we can all be happy again,” Pinkie says, holding the helmet behind her back.

“It's not that easy. I still need time to think about things...” Shepard tries to say, trying to walk around Pinkie to get back her helmet, although that’s not easy.

“Who thinks about these things themselves? That’s not good, silly!" Pinkie says, making sure she's always facing Shepard, "Because then you'll get all negative and sad. Then you’ll never come back, and we’ll all be sad!”

“Pinkie you don’t understand...” Shepard sighs, giving up trying to get behind Pinkie.

“Well duh! How can I understand if you don't explain anything? I’m no mind reader!” Pinkie says, smiling broadly.

“I said it's not that easy,” Shepard continues to try and explain, sighing again.

“That's why you need to talk about it. These problems always seem to get more complicated when you think about them all by yourself,” Pinkie says, being extremely sane for once.

Shepard stares surprised at Pinkie, who continues to look at her with a kind smile, before sighing again.

“I don’t belong here...” Shepard says simply, before looking up at the sky, “ I belong somewhere else...”

Pinkie doesn’t say anything, just nods encouragingly, she could guess it was something like this.

“My mind is so full of uncertainties,” Shepard sighs, rubbing her head, “My memories are still a mess and probably always will be while I’m stuck here... so I’ll never be certain what's true or not, and a lot of those memories scare me.”

Pinkie just listens. She can be a good listener if needs be.

“Not to mention I am scared that I may somehow lose control, even though there's no sign of it happening again,” Shepard continues, unloading her troubles, “There's also how you girls just solved everything before, just with the power of friendship! I’m no use here, I’m a soldier without a cause, without purpose, without meaning, and... I've never felt like that before. I have felt despair, sorrow and hate, but I’ve never felt without a purpose, and that makes everything feel pointless.”

“But why run away to the forest then?” Pinkie asks, curious.

Shepard gives Pinkie a sad look. “Maybe I’m hoping for purpose to come slap me in the face, or...” Shepard looks down at the dead snake, “Maybe I’m hoping for an easy escape...”

Pinkie shakes her head at the sudden dark turn this has taken, not that she doesn’t understand the problem.

“I’m just totally useless here...” Shepard finally says, looking back up at the sky.

“No way! You saved the Cutie Mark Crusaders, they would of been Timber Wolf lunch if you didn’t save them,” Pinkie says, patting the sad Shepard on her back.

“But I met them before it happened, what if my presence caused it to happen?” Shepard asks, raising an eyebrow.

Pinkie shrugs, “Who cares! The fact is you saved them. You also helped Derpy, who now considers you one of her best friends and has been worried about you too,” Pinkie says, with great conviction. “A lot of ponies think of you as a hero already Shepard.”

“But I haven’t really done anything,” Shepard notes, shaking her head.

“Then do more if you're not satisfied, don’t just hang here like a silly nilly,” Pinkie laughs, smiling brightly, “You can’t work out these things alone...”

Shepard just stares at Pinkie, before chuckling sadly, shaking her head. “You know, I once said to someone, only a fool thinks you can do things alone. It's not a weakness to have allies,” Shepard says, a sad smile on her face, “I was never much good at following my own advice, always better at giving it. I was always a loner...”

“Then let’s head back to town,” Pinkie says, patting Shepard’s back and handing back the helmet, “There is no reason to be alone here...”

Shepard thinks about what Pinkie has said, while she puts back on her helmet. “Yeah, maybe that would be the best choice now,” Shepard says, before turning to Pinkie, “Besides I could really use a bath.”

Pinkie is sure there's a smile under that helmet at those words, and smiles back.

“Great!” Pinkie says, happily, taking back her cloth, “But first let’s go pick bluebells, for the ‘finish ringing the bell’ and ‘Shepard has return' party!”

“I don’t need another party... also what the hell kind of party is that?” Shepard asks, following after Pinkie as she bounces off.

“The kind with bluebells in it silly,” Pinkie laughs, as if Shepard is the weird one.

“Do you know where you are going Pinkie?” Shepard asks, pretty sure they are heading deeper into the forest.

“Well duh, I know this place like the back of my hoof,” Pinkie states, smiling.

Shepard rolls her eyes, before continuing to follow after Pinkie. I mean what is the worst that could happen.

Shepard wished she didn’t follow after Pinkie, they both ended up in a weird castle since Pinkie thought she saw Rarity and Fluttershy. Though Shepard can’t imagine why they would both be here in this dirty and scary place, seems so much unlike them.

It got worse when Pinkie found an organ and suddenly claimed she could play it, so now she has been stuck listening to her for the last few hours, and boy does that get boring.

Though eventually her scanner picks up entities approaching, she tries warn Pinkie but she is not listening, to absorbed playing the organ and looking creepy in that cloth. Shepard disappears into the shadows, dimming her helmets lights, and waiting.

She would rather it be a monster or something, anything beside who they actually turned out to be. She could deal with any one of Twilight’s friends, but she was not ready to deal with Twilight herself.

Shepard knows that she feels guilty about everything that has happened, and she probably thinks this is all her fault somehow. Shepard needed some more time to think on how to approach Twilight safely. Maybe she should just sneak away...

Shepard starts to creep away, she’ll meet them all back in Ponyville, maybe have a shower at Derpy’s place...

“Also by the way,” Pinkie says, hoping down from the organ, before suddenly pulling out a torch from her mane, “I found Shepard!” Pinkie suddenly shining the torch on the creeping Shepard, like she’s a criminal trying to escape jail.

“Shepard!” Everyone one goes, walking up to her, as she straightens up. The only one who doesn’t is Twilight, who just stands there looking shocked, and Pinkie, shining the torch.

“Shepard... you were here the whole time?” Twilight asks, a sad looking creeping across her face.

“Yeah, where were you? We looked almost everywhere for you?” Rainbow Dash asks, not noticing their sad looking friend behind them.

“I was in the forest, just honing my skills,” Shepard lies, trying not to appear weak.

“Was that all? We were worried that something happened to you,” Applejack says, sighing in relief.

Shepard looks over at Pinkie and Twilight, Pinkie giving a sad disappointed look, while Twilight looks even sadder. Shepard shakes her head, she is not ready to fully rely on them yet...

“Yeah, that’s all,” Shepard says, taking off her helmet and cracking a fake smile, that fools everyone, beside the two watching.

“Oh Shepard...” Pinkie goes, shaking her head.

Only Twilight hears that, making her wonder if Pinkie knows more than Twilight does, making her hang her head. That makes Twilight feel sad, knowing that Pinkie might be helping Shepard instead of her. Is this... jealousy?

Author's Note:

Yay, another chapter...
I wish I had more time to write:fluttershysad:

Comments ( 1 )

It lives glade to see another chapter

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