• Published 24th Apr 2017
  • 8,222 Views, 353 Comments

Empty Skies - SunnyDays



With gossip and slander rampant at CHS and a target put on Sunset Shimmer's back, she flees the school in search of solace. She never expected to find allies in the most unlikely of groups: CHS's soccer team, the Wondercolts.

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6 - S%&!flier

“SHIT!” Rainbow announced loudly as the list of victims was coming to an end, “...The kid got targeted too!” She frowned.

“‘The Kid’?” Surprise looked around the room in confusion.

“Not Scootaloo!” Misty lamented, “The poor thing.”

Dash clenched her fists, "Anon-a-Miss is really going to pay now."

"Well, at least the list's done." Sunset said, putting her phone down. "We're one step closer to finding her."

"Right." Dash nodded, "But I have a feeling I know who's coming next. Or, should I say, the next two."

"You're probably right." Sunset nodded, "But we won't put them down until we can be sure."

Gilda got up, stretching, "Ugh, we got anything else to do?"

"Not for the night." Sunset said, "If you guys need to head home, go ahead."

"What about you?" Misty asked.

Sunset grinned, "I am home."

Spitfire chuckled softly, and the others nodded.

"So, er, can we ride with you again, Mist?" Dash asked with a smile.

Misty sighed, shaking her head with a smirk, "You're all deadbeats. Sure, come on." She laughed, turning to Sunset, “So… When should we meet up again?”

“Honestly?” Sunset asked, “I’d really like to just spend a few days to myself. We can’t exactly catch Anon-a-Miss during the break… It won’t have the same effect.”

Misty shrugged, “That’s fine. I’ll put everyone in a group chat so that we can keep in touch.”

“Sounds great.” Sunset nodded with a grin.

“Well, I guess we’ll see you around.” Misty nodded. “Come on, Fleet, I’ll drive you home too.”

“Thanks, Mist.” Fleet nodded.

“Flutters?” Dash asked

“I’m alright. I carpooled with Pinkie.” Fluttershy said, “Have a good night, Sunset.”

“See ya, bacon.” Gilda motioned her way.

“Bye Sunny!” Surprise waved. “I CALL SHOTGUN!” She yelled as she ran to Misty’s car.

“Not if I get there first!” Fleet challenged. “LATER!”

Dash chuckled, “See ya, Sunset!”

“Byyyeee~!” Pinkie called, and the group all shuffled out the door.

Sunset went over to the door, watching them all pull out of Clipper’s and into the wintry night. It felt weird to not be driving off with them, and in some ways, Sunset was thankful for that. Misty and Surprise had done nothing but show her kindness throughout the last week when no one else would, and she couldn’t think of anything she could ever do to repay that kindness. With the group now long gone, Sunset went over and sat down at the counter, sighing happily.

“Must feel nice.” Spitfire said, taking a seat next to her, “Having a place to stay.”

“You have no idea.” Sunset smiled back at her. “Thanks again for helping Soarin fix it up.”

“Eh, it was nothin.” Spitfire said, cracking open a beer. “...Want one?”

Sunset gave her a look, “I thought humans weren’t supposed to drink until they were out of high school, here?”

“Doesn’t stop just about everyone from doing it.” Spits smirked, “They’re just not supposed to sell it to you until you’re 21.”

“Oh. Yeah.” She waved, “I’m 25.”

Spitfire burst out laughing, “No way. You are not.”

“I am!” Sunset defended, pouting.

“Then how come you look 18?” Spitfire asked, still clearly not buying it, but amused nonetheless.

“Hmm. How old do humans usually live until?” Sunset asked.

“Uhhh…” Spitfire searched that on her phone, “The average life expectancy is in the 80s. Why?”

“Ponies live to be over a hundred.” Sunset said casually. “As in, anywhere from 130 to 150.”

“Oh, shit.” Spitfire looked down at her beer, as if contemplating to get another. “So, uh, then a pony’s 18 is 25?”

“Pretty much. At least, as far as I know.” Sunset nodded, “Either way, loophole.” She chuckled.

Spitfire shook her head in disbelief, “You’re older than me, then…”

“Nah, you’d be like 30 in Equestria.” Sunset laughed.

“And now I just feel old, thanks a lot, Sunset!” Spitfire exclaimed, pushing Sunset teasingly as the two laughed.

“...I still want that drink though, if you don’t mind.” Sunset said, “I won’t tell Fleet where the alcohol is.”

Spitfire didn’t even get to answer as Soarin dropped off like five beers in front of them, “Here we are!” He smirked, cracking one open, “Fresh from the stash.”

“Hey Soar.” Spitfire smirked, “Turns out Sunny over here is mentally like 25!” She said, pulling Sunset into a soft headlock.

Soarin glanced at Sunset, then at Spitfire, then at the empty can. “Geesh, Spits, you’ve only had one.” Sunset roared with laughter as Spitfire sighed. “...What?” He asked, blinking. Spitfire just rolled her eyes, passing Sunset a beer before opening up a second can.

Sunset bit her lip, “Sh-she’s right though.” She said, still giggling a little.

“Oh, cool! Welcome to the 2-0 club.” Soarin chuckled.

“To be honest, though… I’ve, er, never told any of the girls.” Sunset said.

“I don’t think it’s a big deal, honestly.” Spitfire shrugged as Soarin took a seat with them, “You look 18, you’re a senior in highschool, I don’t think anyone would question it.”

“Yeah,” Soarin nodded. “That's none of their business, really.”

“Well… I’m glad you agree.” Sunset said. She popped open her beer and took a swig.

“You down that like a champ.” Spitfire chuckled at her.

“I’m more used to wine, but hey, it works.” Sunset said.

“Ooh, fancy.” Spitfire teased, “Well I’m sorry you have to drink with the commonwealth, princess.”

Sunset shivered, “Please never say that again…”

Seeing her reaction, Spitfire frowned, raising an eyebrow. “I hit a nerve?” She asked.

Sunset rubbed her shoulder, “It's… A bit of a soft spot, yeah. Let's move on from that.”

“Okay… Well, uh, what do you think you're going to do about your friends?” Soarin asked.

“Not sure yet.” Sunset sighed, “I’m still just… So angry at them for dumping me like that. I don't know if I can ever really forgive them.” She felt a hand on her shoulder, and looked up to see Soarin smiling at her warmly.

“I get it.” He said, “People are stupid in high school. They're petty, and selfish, and aren't against being dirty to get what they want.” Spitfire loudly took a gulp of beer, which made Soarin chuckle nervously. “But sometimes it takes a giant screwup for someone to really realize how much you mean to them. It's the ones who turn around and admit they're wrong who are worth your time.”

Sunset frowned, “Do you… Have you had someone backstab you before, Soarin? Have you been left with no one to turn to or to trust?”

Soarin hesitated for only a moment, “Yes. I have. I forgave them nonetheless.”

“What happened?” Sunset asked him.

Soarin frowned, looking over at Spitfire, who simply nodded her head at him. “So, it was our Senior year at CHS, and also the only year that we were there when the Wondercolts had played so well, we won our way up to nationals. We had vigorous training for those next two weeks leading up to it, and Spitfire had been freaking out over it, as recruiters from all the big leagues were going to be there to keep an eye on the up-and-comings.” Soarin sighed, “Unluckily for us, I fell on my leg wrong during one of the practices, and strained it. The strain didn’t take much more than a week to heal, but Spitfire was too worried about her chances to get a scholarship to care.”

“After Soarin sprained his leg, Fleetfoot approached me about replacing him with Rainbow.” Spitfire stepped in, “And I did. Without telling him, I approached Rainbow Dash about taking his spot. Almost immediately, she refused. Because I didn’t tell Soarin about this in the first place, Rainbow didn’t want to be the one to gain from the betrayal of loyalty of a teammate.” Spitfire nodded to herself, “In the end, that’s why I chose her to take my place when I graduated.”

“...What about the championships? I can’t remember, what happened?” Sunset said.

“We lost.” Spitfire said simply, she and Soarin sharing a good chuckle between the two of them.

Sunset wasn’t sure why they were laughing, so she moved on, “And you forgave them for everything, Soarin? Why?” She frowned over at Spitfire, “Sorry, Spits.”

“Eh.” Spitfire shrugged.

“Well… Mostly because there was no point in making a big deal about it.” Soarin said with a shrug, “We were stupid teenagers, and sometimes stress makes people act without really thinking it through completely.” He smiled at Spitfire, “And you know what happened? Some of them didn't deserve it, and I distanced myself from them. But others…” He put his arm around Spitfire, “Well, they learned their lesson, and I wouldn't trade them for the world.”

“Those… others.” Sunset said, “When did you know when to leave them?”

“Well… It took more than once for things like that to be clear. Some people just never learn, Sunset. But trust me when I say: it's worth the risk.”

Sunset mulled over this for a moment.

“It's your call in the end.” Soarin continued, “If the bad moments with them outweigh the good, then you should look at getting a new group of friends. But if not… They're worth your forgiveness.”

“Thanks, Soarin.” Sunset smiled weakly at him.

“You're welcome. Hey, let's get our minds off the depressing stuff.” He swigged his beer, “Are you going back to Equestria for the holidays?”

Sunset flinched, “Um… Not quite.”

“Huh?”

“I… er, don't have anyone to go back to in Equestria.” Sunset admitted.

“Oh.” Soarin grimaced, “I had no idea.”

“Yeah, most don't.” Sunset replied with a sigh, “I really only had Celestia and Cadence, and they’ve both kinda moved on, I think. And Twilight’s busy. So, I guess I'll just be here.”

“No way!” Soarin exclaimed, standing up, “You’re gonna have Hearth’s Warming with Shadey and I. We’re all by ourselves too, so it’ll make things even better.” He nodded eagerly.

“Soarin, come on, I’m pretty much already mooching off of you.” Sunset said, “I don’t want to get in between you and your sister.”

“You won’t.” He insisted, “And you’re mooching off of me about as much as she is, so that makes you family.”

“Soarin, I hope you realize how little sense that makes.” Spitfire chuckled.

“No way, it makes perfect sense! Oh! And even better, we’re going to throw a big Wondercolts Hearth’s Warming Eve party, right here.” Soarin said, “We’ll have lights, and food and a little tree to celebrate! It’ll be perfect, and Sunset will have the best Hearth’s Warming ever.”

Spitfire leaned into Sunset, “We’ll probably have to remind him of all this in the morning.” She muttered, and Sunset giggled quietly.

“Alright, Soarin, alright.” Sunset chuckled. She felt her phone vibrate in her pocket, but ignored it for the moment. “Thanks. You’re too much sometimes, you dork.”

“Hey.” Spitfire elbowed her, grinning, “That’s my line.”

Sunset smirked back, taking another hearty swig of her beer as she checked her phone.

You, me, shopping. Be ready for 9 AM Monday.’ Misty’s text came through. ‘Maybe we’ll get you started with your little apartment, too. We’ll see.

“Oh man, Misty’s really adamant about this whole shopping thing.” Sunset grimaced.

“What, you not a shopper?” Spitfire asked.

“No, it’s more like I don’t have any money.” Sunset said. “And it makes me feel weird about accepting things from you all.”

Spitfire shrugged, “Then tell her to call it a Hearth’s Warming present and to not get you anything else. We all know you don’t exactly have cash, and we don’t do it expecting something back. At least, I hope not.”

“I guess that’s a pretty good idea.” Sunset nodded, “But what about the party? Shouldn’t I get gifts for everyone then?”

Soarin smiled, “Up to you. It’s still a week away, and you’ll have a little bit of a paycheck by then.”

“Oh, right!” Sunset’s mood brightened considerably, slumping in relief before sighing, “It feels so great. I have a warm home, good friends, and a stable way to get food. There’s only one thing that could make this better.”

“And what’s that?” Spitfire asked.

“Catching Anon-a-Miss.” Sunset said confidently with a smirk.

---

“Pfft, really?” Fleet asked, “Last again? Come on, Mist, I know you and I have our little rival thing, but you don’t have to be cruel about it.”

“What are you on about?” Misty raised an eyebrow, “You live closest to me, Fleet, of course you’d be dropped off last.” She flinched a little, “Am I… Am I that petty to you?”

“That was a joke, Mist, chill.” Fleet assured.

“Mmm.” She frowned, clearly not buying it.

“You’ve never been that petty.” Fleet said, “I promise it was just a joke.”

“Good.” Misty sighed, “It always seems like we’re just fighting. Over everything. This whole thing with Sunset, our team stats, general life… Believe it or not, I don’t really like that.”

“Yeah, me neither. ...Okay, maybe sometimes pushing your buttons is fun,” Misty gave her a flat look. “The point is we do it too often. Everyone’s gonna think that we hate each other at some point.”

“Maybe we need to hang out some more? Just you and me?” Misty asked.

“Doing what? Something competitive, like video games?” Fleet asked in amusement, knowing very well that anything competitive between the two would only set them back to default rivalry.

“I was thinking more of… You coming shopping with Sunset and I on Monday.” Misty said. “I still want to get you something for Hearth’s Warming before I leave for my family trip, and I think it’d be a good time for you and Sunset to really have that talk you promised you’d have with her. That fiasco in Clipper’s isn’t going to cut it for me as your end of the deal.”

Fleet let out a long sigh, “Shopping, really?”

“Well? I guess I never said you have to go. I just thought you’d-”

“-Okay, I’ll go.” Fleet said.

Misty blinked, “Why the sudden excitement?”

“I kinda owe it to both you and Sunset. So yeah, I’ll go. I don’t like having people be disappointed in me.” Fleet said, “Especially you, believe it or not.”

Misty blinked again, being silent for a moment before nodding to herself, “Alright then. We’ll be picking Sunset up at 9, then we’re heading to the mall.” Misty pulled up to Fleetfoot’s home, “Hey, Fleet?” She called as Fleetfoot started to get out of the car.

“Yeah?”

“...Thanks. Again.” Misty flashed her a smile, “You’re still a great teammate.”

“Don’t mention it.” Fleet smirked back, slinging her shoulder over her shoulder, “You are too. Thanks for toting me around all the time.”

“Oh, just get inside before Night Glider yells at both of us.” Misty said with a chuckle.

“Right. Goodnight!” Fleet called, waving as Misty pulled away.

---

Diamond Tiara leaned back in her chair on Monday morning, tapping her fingers on her keyboard as her butler entered, “Madame, your friends have arrived.” He said as Apple Bloom, Sweetie Belle, and Scootaloo came into her room, all gripping their bags nervously.

“Ah, just the three I wanted to talk to.” Diamond smirked. “...You three haven’t been posting much this weekend. And why is that?”

“Well, uh, we kinda haven’t gotten much in.” Apple Bloom said, clearly sweating buckets.

Diamond rolled her eyes, “Pah, do I have to do all of the work? If you won’t give me access to the account, at least let me see one of your phones to look over the dirt.” She said, holding out a hand. The CMC looked over at each other hesitantly. “Do I have to remind you three what’s at stake?” Diamond huffed. Scootaloo sighed, handing her the phone. “Thank you.” She rolled her eyes in annoyance, scrolling through the requests, “Crap, crap, crap, dull, shit, boring,” She paused, grimacing, “Ewwwww…” Finally, the smirk found its way back onto her face, “Oooohhh~? Why, this oughta be interesting~” She pushed the phone back into Scootaloo’s face, “Post it.”

“What?” Scootaloo’s face twisted, “But this isn’t even from our school anymore!”

“I said… Post. It.” Diamond repeated between gritted teeth.

“No way, we already stretched getting the Shadowbolts involved by going after Misty.” Scootaloo crossed her arms, “But this is Cinch we're talking about. We're definitely going to get the Shadowbolts involved with that.”

Diamond put her hands up, “Alright, fine, don't post it.” Apple Bloom looked at her, finding it strange that she was giving in so easily. “...I’ll just have to send a text to our good friend Sunset Shimmer.” Diamond grinned ferally.

“NO!” The three panicked.

“Then put it up!” Diamond snapped. “And I want to see it done right. This is big.”

Apple Bloom grimaced, typing up their newest piece of dirt. ‘VIDEO ATTACHED: Principal Abacus Cinch of Crystal Prep blackmails student over scholarship signature’.

“There. Ya happy?” Apple Bloom frowned.

“Good work.” Diamond nodded, “And look, we even saved some poor Crystal Prep sap. Don't you girls feel great?” The CMC didn't seem to agree, going back to their phones with various expressions of disapproval. Diamond grinned to herself, putting her back up against one of the walls and typing out a message to a quite powerful ally, ‘Did you see that Anon-a-Miss post?’

The account on the other end typed for a few moments before she got her reply, ‘Ohh yes, and it wasn’t even one of mine. I’m shocked. Was that you?’

‘No way, I just happen to know who Anon-a-Miss is. That being said, I need a favor from you.’ Diamond typed back.

‘I’m listening.’

‘I need you to send in as much dirt on Crystal Prep as you have.’

‘Oh? And why would you want that?’

‘I’m going to get Anon-a-Miss in as deep into shit as I can.’ Diamond smirked, glancing up to make sure the three weren’t looking her way. Assured that they weren’t, she added, ‘Dragging Crystal Prep into this is just what I need, and I know you’re just the girl to turn to for that.’

‘You’d be absolutely right. I think it’ll be easy enough to pin shit on whoever looks at me wrong.’

Diamond grinned, ‘Perfect. I knew you’d be useful one day, SS.’

‘Don’t get too excited.’ On the other end of the line, Sour Sweet flashed her own devious grin, ‘We’ll see who I need to target first.’