• Published 1st Jul 2012
  • 4,144 Views, 112 Comments

Shipping Wars - Soothing Stone

When Fluttershy invites Spike to a romantic-ish dance, everypony tries to figure out why.

  • ...

Chapter 2

Tensions were going down, as Twilight had taken out a chalkboard into the room and drew the heads of Fluttershy and Spike together, with a line connecting them and a question mark in the middle of the line.

Rarity, Applejack, and Spike looked over the drawing, in the same manner that the players on a sports team looked over the game plan.

"Now, as of now let's assume Fluttershy likes Spike," Twilight said as she wrote a heart shape above Fluttershy and pointed it at the dragon. "Now the only question is, why?"

"I have an idea, if you don't mind," Rarity volunteered to answer. "I personally find Spike to be adorable, with his cute little cheeks and purple scales, and he is so helpful around."

The dragon was blushing at every line, but he was grateful his crush even remotely liked him a little.

"Good, that's a start." Twilight marked in the words "ADORABLE" and "HELPFUL" underneath. "I agree, he does make for a good assistant. What next?"

"I hope I don't ruffle any feathers around these parts," Applejack said, "but Fluttershy's special talent is taking care of animals, right? That's the reason she has butterflies for a cutie mark...what if she wants to 'take care' of Spike by--"

Immediately she found Rarity in her face, noses pushed against each other. "Spike is the best dragon around, and doesn't deserve to be treated like one of the pigs in your barn!"

"I didn't mean that! I just thought--"

They were interrupted as Twilight used her horn to shut their lips with rope, forcing them to turn back to the chalkboard.

"Girls, I know tensions are high, but stay focused. And no, it's not fair to him to call him a pet, but that's besides the point," the purple unicorn noted.

"I'm going out for a while," Spike groaned. "I can see where this is going."

He left through the door, and Applejack turned around to see Rarity looked like she was in the mood to teach her a few lessons on pain. But somehow, by the grace of Celestia, they went back to business.

"Fine," Applejack said. "I'm thinking the same as Twilight and Rarity. He does help out a lot, and for that I'm thankful. But he does that to everypony. Why would Fluttershy fall in love with him over anypony else?"

"I don't know," said the white unicorn, then she went up on the chalkboard and wiped away Spike's head and replaced it with Big Mac's. "If anything, this makes more sense."

She drew up a bunch of traits, ranging from "SHY" to "GREAT WITH ANIMALS".

"Look at them!" Rarity declared. "They share so many traits like these, and don't they look cute together?"

She went to work and drew a quick art piece of Fluttershy and Big Mac snuggling by a fireplace. "See what I mean?"

"Now hold your saddle for a moment," Applejack snapped back. "The last time a pony thought Big Mac was the one for a mare, it ended with a potion and a lot of things I won't mention behind his back. Don't get my brother back into this."

"Oh, but I'm not. I'm just thinking out loud, I wouldn't do that to him. Even if he is a little smelly..."

Without warning Applejack leaped into the air and lunged for Rarity with hooves extended, before Twilight grabbed her with a spell and lowered her slowly.

"This is no time for name calling! Let's get back to...wait a minute..."

Whenever or not they were willing to acknowledge it, the whole business had turned something on in their brains. Something that wasn't going to let go for hours.

It was obvious as Twilight wiped away Fluttershy's face and the trait lists, and drew Cheerilee's face instead.

"AJ, did Big Mac and Cheerilee ever stay together after Hearts and Hooves Day?"

Applejack's eyes widened, as she got up and dusted herself off with her hat. "Pardon...oh, those two. Um, I don't know. They did become close friends, and sometimes they like to go eat out, and sometimes he likes to greet her with a hoofful of flowers--"

Whatever kind of rage she was in was nothing compared to this. Steam came out of her ears and her hat flew off to land on Rarity's head. "I should have know! I thought he was better than that, dating that pretty teacher behind my back! Now you're going to get it!"

Twilight trotted for her life as the Earth Pony went straight for the chalkboard and wiped away her brother's face, and put in...Twilight's face instead.

"What?" she screamed. "Why would you pair me with Cheerilee? I barely even know her all that well!"

"But it makes too much sense!" Applejack explained. "She's a teacher, and you're learning right now. You could even say you're a know-it-all that could be a teacher if you wanted. Heck, by Celestia's mane you both even act alike!"

"I'm not interested in dating mares!" Twilight finally exploded. "I know what you mean, however, I'm more interested in stallions than anything else. I'm sorry."

Applejack mouthed an "oh" with her lips, and grabbed a cloth and wiped away Twilight's face from the chalkboard, Cheerlie's after that, and put Fluttershy's back on there.

Then she did something to destroy any sense of sense: Drawing Rainbow Dash's head on there.

"What?" the unicorns said in unison.

"Now give me a moment to explain," Applejack mentioned. "Now, we all know that they have been friends for a while, right?"

They nodded, that was true. Rainbow and Fluttershy were friends as long as they could remember.

"And best of all, Rainbow seems to help Fluttershy around with her...shyness. Right?"

"But if they were together, why would Fluttershy ask Spike out on a date?" Rarity asked.

"Does Rainbow Dash ever like to dress in style?"

Rarity couldn't help but laugh, rolling around on the sofa in delight, almost as if it was a joke. Even Twilight couldn't help herself, Rainbow hated dresses with a passion.

After they had calmed down, they shaked their heads in agreement.

"Exactly. She doesn't. So maybe this was something Rainbow didn't want to go to, and so she had to pick a stallion but settled for Spike."

"I don't think so," Rarity disagreed. "For one, he is much too young to know about the ways of a lady, and two, I still seriously doubt that they're together, regardless of your reasoning."

"Still," said Twilight as she approached the chalkboard and wiped the board clean. "That does raise a question." This time the heads of Spike and Rarity themselves went up. Twi drew a line from Spike pointing to Rarity, writing a "confirmed" note, then putting a line from Rarity to Spike with a question above. "Rarity, we all know Spike has a crush on you, and you know it. We all know it. But the question I have is, do you have feelings for him?"

To Rarity it felt like the temperature skyrocketed, and she was in an oven. She was sweating like a pig, and even though only Applejack and Twilight were staring at her, it felt like she was drowning in a sea of peering eyes, begging, watching, waiting for the next words.

I can't lie to them, she thought to herself. But I really shouldn't speak of such matters like they were mere gossip. But in the end, they are my friends...

"No," she finally admitted. "I don't love Spike in that matter."

Surprisingly, the other unicorn took it well, writing a "not happening" note above both heads on the board.

"If I must explain myself," she continued, "it's for the same reasons I cannot picture Spike going out with anypony yet. Have you seen him lately? He's as small as a filly, as he's just as mature as one. Even though he will always be my Spikey Wikey, I can't put him through that yet. And..."

She looked around the room and shut all the windows, made sure the door was extra tight, and then she looked like she was comfortable to start talking. "I...I already have a special somepony."

"What? Why didn't you tell us about this? And who is he?" Twilight exclaimed.

"If you insist, I haven't told you yet because I started to go out with him not that long ago. He is a charming stallion for sure, but I'm not ready to go public with it yet."

"That's nice and dandy, but you haven't told us who he is yet," Applejack said.

Once again Rarity made the rounds to make sure nopony would hear what she was about to say, even shrugging the windows to make sure there wasn't one crack that air could pass through. "I will tell you, but do not mention this to one more soul. I do not know if he is as he appears, but I do love him so far..."

She slowly trotted over to the chalkboard again, and something about this felt extra special. The way she was walking, it felt like a ceremony in design. Applejack and Twilight eyeballed her every movement, as it was turning to a revelation event.

When Rarity started to draw the stallion, it wasn't just a head shot, it was a full drawn model. She started with the legs, and the hooves were shaven like Big Mac's. Then she did the body, and whoever he was, he was bigger than most Ponyville ponies yet slender in his build.

The unicorn kept going painfully slow, finishing the head and went to the clothing. It was becoming clear with his expensive tux that he was from Canterlot, and Twilight was starting to get the idea, but wanted to be sure.

Then it came at last. Rarity drew the mane, a slicked back head of fur...and finished it off with a monocle.

"Fancy Pants," Rarity huffed. "I have to come clean about it. Ever since we met right before Twilight's birthday party, I always found him a fascinating character, so much so that at Shining and Cadence's wedding reception I tracked him in the crowd and spent the night dancing with him.

"I didn't just travel to Canterlot recently for supplies, no, I went out on a date with him. And he is the most charming pony I have ever met...and I think I am in love with the stallion."

Twilight's face went blank, like the first moment she heard the first news of a tragedy. Applejack's jaw was down all the way to the ground, and they couldn't believe it when they heard it.

"I had no idea," Applejack responded. "You were always one I suspected would be the mushy type, but I can't believe I didn't catch it sooner."

"I'm happy for you, I really am," Twilight mentioned. "But eventually we have to tell Spike. He's going to be devastated, but he has to know sooner or later."

"I know, he is a sweet little dragon," said Rarity. "But I'm not for certain Fancy is the one, that's the only reason why you're the first two to know."

"I think we should call this a day for now," brought up Twilight. "We're all a little stressed out, so let's go outside for a while."

"Good idea," Applejack said as she finally got her hat back from Rarity, dusting it off of the mane care products that had gotten on it. "But Big Mac better not have gone fooling around with Cheerlie like that..."

The three ponies exited out the room and went down the stairs to the base level of the Boutique. Rarity noted that it was a few minutes before noon, so they decided to go out for lunch in the town square.

Today was shaping up to be a beautiful day, with a gentle breeze keeping it cool and crisp, almost to jacket weather. It was the beginning of spring, and for this year the season would be sunny with a few thunderstorms here and there to make it not a dry year. The winter would make up for it by having a soggy start.

Since it was such a beautiful day, they opted for an outdoor sit-down restaurant, in what amounted to little more than a high-end coffee shop. On the way to the place, they did spot Spike inside another store, but decided not to bother him to give him time to think.

They took their seats and made their orders. Twilight went for the cheese and hay soup, Rarity went for a light sunflower sandwich, and as you could predict, Applejack went for a salad that had apples mixed in, in her mind apples were awesome.

"I am grateful that we're able to talk about such personal matters, even if it means the occasional hat flying to my carefully treated mane," Rarity laughed it off.

"Yeah, there's still a little bit of gel left over here, but I don't mind," Applejack laughed as well. "It was interesting, I had no idea about you and...that other pony."

"It is a nice day outside, I'm glad we thought about this," Twilight said as her mane was fluttered with a little gust of wind. "But I was thinking about something when Applejack said that Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash might be a couple."

"Yeah, Twilight?" Applejack leaned.

"What if Fluttershy doesn't really like Spike all that much, but just wanted to have a partner to the dance?"

"Never thought of that," the earth pony confessed. "But this isn't some old high school dance, it's the one where you're supposed to take your love and go have a date."

"She did seem pretty happy that Spike said yes. Oh well, let's just drop it for a while. I think they're coming with our orders!"

And yes they did, as a unicorn waiter came to the table hovering three plates of food. "Is this order 29? I got a sunflower sandwich, a hay and cheese soup, and an apple salad. For Applejack, right?"

"Yes, that's us," said Twilight. The waiter came and put all the plates to the corresponding mare, and they suddenly realized how hungry the last 15 minutes had made them, as their stomachs all rumbled to the smells of the plates in front of them.

They dug in, and enjoyed their meals, easing into the lunch hour and were able to talk about something other than pairing couples together.

"I don't know how your soup and sandwich was, but this is the best salad I've had in a while," complimented Applejack. "But I don't think these are my apples..."

"Yeah, it's always good for a quick bite, trust me," Rarity mentioned. Then something caught her eye, and she looked past Applejack as she looked close to the corner of a street.

What was going on that was so interesting, was that she caught Big Mac and Cheerilee, together walking out around the corner to their field of vision. Somehow they didn't see the group sitting down, as they were snuggling each other and even teasing a kiss.

"Applejack, look," she said, pointing at the couple. Applejack turned around to see what Rarity was so concerned about, and she couldn't believe her eyes. There they were, and right when she turned around they had one of the longest kisses in Equestrian history. Then they found a poster to the Ponyville Palace Dance, and Cheerilee did a fake dance, and he laughed and did his own dance.

Cheerilee mumbled something about having to be back at school, and they exchanged another kiss as they went their separate ways. He never noticed his sister watching the whole thing, and went out to the direction of Sweet Apple Acres.

The coast was clear, and Applejack sighed a long sigh of anger. "How does he find the time, the courage to do something that serious without telling the family?"

"I...wow," Rarity said, dumbfounded by what they saw. "How are we supposed to handle this mess on top of the FlutterSpike one?"

"FlutterSpike?" Twilight said in confusion.

"It's what I'm calling that pairing now. That way I don't have to say both names. But nevermind, what should we do now?"

"I have an idea," Applejack said in a grim manner. "I'll fix this before the sun rises tomorrow."


The day was a long one, even for somepony as experienced as Big Mac. Planting the seeds for the next harvest took its time, and while the plowing was fun and all, the seed planting was always tedious and boring after time. That's why he was grateful it only took one day to finish that step in the harvest cycle.

The sun had set, and his body was exhausted and sweaty from the wear and tear of the day. He went to the outdoor shower and took care of business with the hoofsoap, and soon he was as clean as he was at the start of today.

He was starting to get hungry, having not eaten at all except for a treat in the form of an apple. There wasn't a lot of room to slack off when it came to seed planting, and he was looking forward to eating dinner all day.

Once his shower was over, he walked to the front porch and arrived at the front door. He couldn't hear Applebloom inside, as she went to Twilight's for another Cutie Mark Crusader sleepover. But it was odd for it to be completely silent. Applejack and Granny Smith were very talkative, at least when Smith wasn't napping, so he rushed inside to see what was wrong, thinking there could be an intruder inside.

Nope. It was much worse than that.

Inside, it looked like a scene from one of your mobster movies. The lights had dimmed down lower than usual, and Granny Smith was sitting down on her chair, grim eyed and staring right into her grandson's soul. Applejack was standing next to her, appearing like Smith's righthand pony.

"Take a seat, Big Macintosh," Applejack said without a hint of comfort in those words. "We have a lot to talk about."