• Published 25th Aug 2018
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Sunset Shimmer Hunts the Undead - Rune Soldier Dan

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Slices of Life

Sunset stepped from the bathroom, showered and dressed for work. Still over an hour before she had to leave, but time with Celestia had imprinted on her a fastidious habit of having everything together well ahead of time. One of the many little things for which she was grateful.

Today, it might not have been a good idea. The sight set her dorm-mates to blinking, and added a blush to Applejack’s cheeks.

“Shooters.” Adagio read the word stretched tightly at the nipple-line of Sunset’s shirt, then let her eyes drift to the exposed navel. “When you said you got a job as a waitress, I pictured something classier.”

The eyes kept sinking, now to the short skirt and heels. “It suits you.”

“It suits me tightly,” Sunset said, trying and failing to fidget the wedgie from her regulation skirt.

Applejack swallowed down her blush, green eyes radiating only concern. “Are you hard up? I can give you money instead. I know what they say about that place.”

“‘They’ have definitely never gone to a Shooters.” Sunset pulled the skirt hard to one side and let it snap back, smiling as that solved the wedgie. “It’s a restaurant that caters to the lowest common denominator of greasy food and greasy men, all drinking and watching football on greasy screens. But that’s all. They actually have a way stricter harassment policy than most restaurants.”

“Speaking from experience?” Adagio asked with a leer.

Sunset smiled evenly as thunder boomed outside. “Yeah, I worked there a bit some years ago. I was hoping to get my old job with Miss Chrysalis back, but she put me on hold hell and I can take a hint.”

“The cigarette maker?” Wallflower made a face. “What did you do for her?”

Burn incriminating tax documents.

“Janitorial work,” Sunset said.

“But are you okay?” Applejack asked, pressing her original point. “You said earlier you had enough squirreled away to get by. What changed?”

Applejack stepped closer with the words, still only worried for her scantily-clad friend. She was like that, of course. Always caring, always putting others first.

Sunset looked to Applejack, but her gaze slid to the broad, muscular shoulders. Still no idea what to do about all that…

...Right, Rarity. She’ll know. There was time.

Sunset grinned and forced her eyes to Applejack’s face. “Christmastime. I might be buying something nice for myself, too. Just a few weekends of this to give me money to burn.”

Her phone chimed from its pocket, opening a line of retreat. “Sorry guys, I have to take this in private.”

She entered the bedroom, closed the door, and checked the phone. An email from Gunkitty showcasing its holiday holsters and plushies. Whatever. Sunset swiped the message aside and tapped Rarity’s name.

Five rings passed before a gargling voice answered, mingled with the same rain pattering Sunset’s window. “Darling, whatever has you calling at this unearthly hour?”

Sunset blinked once and glanced to Applejack’s clock. “It’s two in the afternoon.”

“On a Saturday,” the voice labeled ‘Rarity’ answered. “Last night Rainbow took me the most vulgar soirée I have ever seen. Kegs, dancing, and music so loud I can still feel it hammering my skull.”

“Sorry,” Sunset offered sympathetically.

“Not at all,” Rarity croaked. “Great fun. Can’t wait for the one next week. But the party didn’t quite wind down until a few hours ago, so if this can please wait...”

Sunset spoke quickly. “It can definitely wait. I’ll hang up, I just think I’m in love and–”


Wind from the receiver blew Sunset’s hair with the words. Frazzled and suddenly questioning the wisdom of her course, she offered meek protest.

“It’s not urgent.”

Too late. Rarity’s posh accent emerged in its flawless norm. “Au contraire, mon chéri! Nothing is more urgent than matters of the heart!”

“O...kay,” Sunset said cautiously. “But you have to keep this a secret. It’s kind of weird.”

A melodic titter sounded in response. “Darling, darling! You can tell me anything. SoTellMeEverything!”

Another voice came over the line, lower and grumbling. “Rares, what the heck has you shouting at this ungodly hour?”

“Rainbow, good timing~!” Rarity’s sing-song tone sent quiet sweat down Sunset’s face. “Our little Sunset has a boyfriend~!”

“Cool. Who is it?”

“She’s about to tell us~! If someone would stop interrupting~!”

Sunset contemplated hanging up, then realized the inevitable pursuit and decided against. “Hi, Rainbow. I don’t have a boyfriend, I have a crush. I want to talk about it but I don’t want you to tell anyone… else.”

“Of course she agrees,” Rarity chimed.

Rainbow gave a low chuckle. “Yeah. This stays between me, Rarity, and Rarity’s MyStable friends.”

“You wound me,” Rarity sighed, but then went on in a more subdued tone. “But yes, Sunset, you may trust my discretion. I shan’t tell a soul.”

A gentle cough from Sunset earned a last two words. “Starting now.”

As good as Sunset was going to get. “Fine. She doesn’t know yet, but… it’s Applejack.”

Silence formed the first response. A touch disheartening given the circumstances. Rarity made to speak, but ear-splitting thunder from outside interrupted, accompanied by a hiss as their connection fell to static.

Crappy weather didn’t usually slow business at Shooters, but today’s driving, freezing storm kept all but the determined in their homes. A blessing and a curse: fewer tips to go around, but plenty of time to discreetly text Rainbow and Rarity.

They were supportive – of course they were, but even in texts Sunset sensed an undercurrent of caution. For her to be hetero-with-exceptions was fine, and for her to experiment in a more female direction was doubly so. But each of them pegged Applejack as someone who craved more than experimentation. Commitment, intimacy… could Sunset give her that? Not even Sunset knew. This was all still strange to her.

The chat petered out as both confidants offered the same advice: Go for it. But mind that Applejack was a sensitive girl who would blame herself if things didn’t work out. Be her friend, no matter what.

...In short, things Sunset had already figured out for herself. But it felt nice to have a sounding board.

Rainbow tried to resurrect the conversation with a wink-faced comment about Applejack’s rope-tying skills, at which point Sunset decided to take on an extra few tables. More work meant more tips, although she had cause to regret the moment she saw the mound of curly orange hair in the first booth.

Sunset could retreat… no, the manager was here and he’d already dinged her once for the texting. Sunset wound her way past the bar (only half-filled tonight with the usual array of perverts and football-nuts) and approached Adagio’s smirk with resignation.

“What a coincidence,” Sunset said in irate greeting. “I didn’t know you liked sports bars.”

“I don’t, but I do like scantily clad women in subservient roles.” Adagio made a show of studying the menu. “I think I’ll start with a...”

She gave a long, slow lick of the lips. “Special Number Five.”

“There is no Special Number Five.” Sunset said in a tone that brooked no dissent.

Adagio didn’t care. “Yeah, yeah, I’m sure you have to deny it. But why else would they have these long tablecloths, if not for you to go under there?”

“There is no Special Number Five,” Sunset growled again. “It’s a stupid internet rumor. Technically I can throw you out just for suggesting it.”

“I bet if AJ ordered the Special Five you’d give it to her.”

Sunset released a groan and wrote on her pad. “I’ll bring you some water. Splash yourself with it and I’ll be back in a few minutes to either take your order or call the police.”

She blew out a sigh as she walked away, though quickly put on a grin for the next booth. And then the next…

She froze at the sight of its two occupants: one a massive, hairy man in a pinstripe suit, and the other a shrimpy, clay-skinned nerd. Both looking back with expressions of shock mirroring her own.

“Professor Whooves,” Sunset said meekly. “Iron Will. H...hi.”

Both of her ex-teachers and monster hunting comrades avoided eye contact.

“Hi, Sunset,” Iron Will offered. “You, uh… you work at Shooters, huh?”

“You eat at Shooters,” Sunset replied.

“We like feetball,” Whooves said.

Iron Will fidgeted with a gaudy ruby ring on his finger. “Does your mom know you work here?”

“No. Does she know you come here?”

“Um… no.” Whooves gave a weak smile. “So, neither of us saw each other?”

“Oh, oh!” Iron Will plastered on a wheedling grin. “None of us saw each other, and when we order the large wings you’ll ‘accidentally’ bill us for a medium instead.”

“Make it a twenty-five percent tip and you have a deal,” Sunset held up her pen.

The pair spoke together. “Done.”

“One ‘medium’ wings, coming up.” Sunset scribbled something incomprehensible to all but her. “And thank you for coming to Shooters where – ugh – ‘we’re cool, cute, and like men who can shoot!’”

“Please don’t make this more awkward than it is,” Whooves said meekly.

“Company policy, I have to say certain catchphrases with certain orders.” Sunset’s voice emerged low and annoyed. “For all our sake, don’t order the corn dogs, frozen bananas, or clams. Now what can I get you to drink? Our tap beers are Heineykins, Adam Sams, Bud Pisswater...”

Author's Note:

Link for those unfamiliar with the reference.

Short chapter is short... was originally part of the next but they were both different and long enough I chose to divide. Next will go up sometime next week.

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