• Published 1st Aug 2012
  • 3,541 Views, 204 Comments

Identity Theft - FauxShores

100 people have been selected to go to a virtual representation of Equestria...

  • ...


Author's note: I actually experienced way more emotion than i would have expected writing this chapter. It's a bit shorter than the last one, but i think it should do nicely for today's update.

I'm not sure I will be able to hold my pace of a chapter a day, but i will try to keep to it. I don't plan on rushing through this, so I only plan on releasing chapters that are fully thought out. Anyways, i hope you enjoy this as much as i enjoyed writing it.


Octavia hid behind her hooves. Her face tucked deeply away from the world, she let flow a stream of silent tears. Vinyl was speechless. She had never had a friend who openly let loose this much emotion. Maybe it was because all of her friends were guys and they tried to tuck it away. Maybe it was because no one felt close enough to her to share their emotions. Either way, Vinyl had no idea what to do.

This is way deeper than anything I have dealt with.

She sat on the couch next to her. She wasn’t sure what her next move should be, but she knew she had to do something. Seeing her friend like this was too much to bear. She didn’t have to react however, as Tavi began to stand up.

“I’m so sorry Vinyl, this isn’t your problem its mine.” She quietly retreated from the couch and fled to her room. Vinyl sat there confused.

Look at you, acting like a true friend.

She mentally slapped herself. She hopped off of the couch and walked to the kitchen. She wasn’t sure exactly how she was going to help, but she was going to try.

She picked up a carton of milk from their fridge and carefully floated it over to their counter, careful not to spill. She grabbed one of the glasses with a handle from the cupboard and filled it to the top. She set the drink in the microwave and let it run for a moment.

I hope this isn’t too clichéd. I want her to take me seriously.

After the drink was warm she slowly approached Tavi’s door. She knocked twice with her spare hoof.

”Hey, can I come in?” she asked quietly. There was no response. Vinyl was afraid she was either ignoring her or she had already fallen asleep. “If you uh, want to be alone that’s fine. I totally understand, but I’m here.”

Here for what? You have no idea what to say.

“Even if I can’t fully understand, I can listen.” She added. “We can talk about it.”

A minute or so passed with no response.

Am I annoying her?

“I uh, I’ll just let you have your space I guess.” She stammered. “I’m here if you need me.”

Vinyl backed down from the door. She figured the best way to help was to give her space. She just needed time to think.

She carried the milk with her to her bedroom and silently closed the door. She set the drink down on her side table and flicked off the light with her magic. She climbed into bed and pulled her blankets up to her neck and rolled over. The necklace from home rested against her cheek, slightly cold to the touch. She pulled it close to her chest and sighed.

How can I help my friends when I can’t help myself?

She lifted her necklace up and over her head and set it on her nightstand. Quickly, she pulled the blankets back over herself.

She closed her eyes and surrendered for the night. She had nearly drifted off to sleep when there was a light knock at her door.

Vinyl’s ears twitched and she rubbed her eyes. Sleep was going to have to wait. “It’s open” She said softly.

Octavia peered shyly through the door. Her eyes were red and her coat around her face was pretty damp. “Can I come in?” She asked.

Vinyl quickly responded. “Yeah, let me get the light.” She flicked the switch with ease and motioned for her to lay down.

Octavia closed the door behind her and slowly approached the bed. She crawled up next to where Vinyl had been and laid down. Again, she placed her face just inside her hooves.

You don’t have to hide.

Vinyl sat back down on the bed and remembered the glass of milk. She grabbed it and nudged Tavi with her other hoof.

“I warmed up some milk. I hope that’s not too tacky.”

Octavia lifted her head and turned to face her roommate. “It’s not tacky it’s sweet.” She faked a smile and accepted the offering.

Vinyl’s smile wasn’t forced. “I didn’t add any sugar, it shouldn’t be too sweet.” She joked.

That was tacky.” Octavia added with a smile. Vinyl was pretty sure it was genuine this time.

Slow and steady Vinyl.

She let Octavia sip at her milk in relative silence. She wasn’t sure what she should do next so she decided not to rush it. When Octavia finished her drink she silently handed the glass back to Vinyl.

“Thanks Vinyl.” She said with a sigh. “I wish there were more people like you.”

That made Vinyl grin. She may not have been able to do much, but it was helping.

“No worries.” She said. “Is there anything you want to talk about?”

Octavia was tired. She didn’t feel like crying anymore, which was nice, but she didn’t exactly feel good either. Even so, she felt comforted by the fact that for the first time in a long while someone was trying to understand her. The only question now was if she would let her in.

Throughout her entire life everyone she let in to her true self had hurt her. Admittedly, she hadn’t told many people about her secret, but not a single one of them had understood. She had lost a few good friends because of it. She wasn’t sure she wanted to lose another.

Octavia decided that her new friend was trustworthy. After all, she had helped her through her first day here in Ponyville. She slowly stood up on the bed and stretched. It felt much better than she would have expected it to. It managed to make her a bit more relaxed.

She pointed to the spot next to Vinyl with her hoof. “Mind if I lay down here?”

Vinyl had no objection. “Go for it.” She nearly whispered.

Octavia laid down next to Vinyl. The dent in the bed made from Vinyl’s sleeping brought them a bit closer to each other than Octavia had planned. She was hoping it wasn’t too personal.

Octavia turned to face her new friend and was surprised at how close their faces were. She blushed a bit and tried to give her a bit more space. “S-sorry.” She stammered.

Vinyl giggled at her blushing.

I’ve never giggled in before in my life.

Vinyl looked at her friend who was obviously embarrassed. It was a moment she found incredibly adorable.

I regret nothing.

Vinyl tried to ease the pressure. “We’re both mares here.” She said. “You don’t have to get all embarrassed.

Octavia smiled and moved a bit closer. “Yeah, but that seems to be the problem for me.”

Vinyl’s smile turned to a look of concern. Now was her chance to help.

“So,” she said “If you don’t mind me asking, why do you feel this way?” Maybe she was overthinking it, but she thought that might have sounded a bit condescending. “I mean, like, when did the idea first come to you?” She hoped that sounded a bit friendlier.

Octavia curled up a bit and nuzzled into her pillow. It was soft and warm and it made her a bit less tense.

“To be honest I can’t remember when it first happened.” She said quietly. The way she spoke was influenced by a hint of depression and guilt. Vinyl may not have been a psychiatrist, but she knew a pained voice when she heard one.

You shouldn’t have to feel guilty about feeling that way.

Vinyl didn’t want to interrupt her thought process, so she just absently brushed Octavia’s mane. Vinyl thought it may have been too invasive at first, but Octavia didn’t seem to mind it.

She finally spoke again. “It’s always been a part of me.” She said. Vinyl could understand that. There are some things that just define who you are as a being. Vinyl couldn’t remember the first time she heard a song on the radio, but her parents used to play nothing but eighty’s music. Growing up in the ninety’s, she was often ridiculed for liking the “Old School” stuff.

Vinyl smiled. She knew damn well that the eighty’s had their moments. Not all of it was perfect, but she loved that era of music. Growing up with that made her appreciate music of so many different styles.

Music was a part of her, she had known that since she was just a kid. She thought back to when she first picked up an instrument. Her father had gotten her a guitar for Christmas, and her brother had gotten a drum kit. She spent hours trying to learn her chords, but there was always a distraction.

Her brother loved the drum kit he got. Like any novice, he wasn’t any good at it, but it didn’t take long before he found some rhythm. That’s when Vinyl noticed it for the first time, the element of music that would have her truly hooked. The beat.

It didn’t take long for Vinyl to hop on the kit when her brother wasn’t playing, and unlike her brother she never seemed to get off of it. She didn’t ignore the guitar she had gotten, but the drums we’re way more fun to play.

Five years later she had forgotten everything about guitar except for a few basic chords. Her knowledge had been replaced by countless hours of jamming along to rock and metal on her acoustic drum kit. While metal wasn’t her favorite genre, she couldn’t help but love the heavy bass. Vinyl had learned to feel the music, and while she may not have been the best drummer, it was what she did.

Vinyl knew exactly what Tavi meant when she said it was just a part of her. She may not have understood how exactly, but she knew what it meant to be defined by something.

“I know what you mean by that” Vinyl said. “When something is a part of you it defines who you are. If you take that away there’s a gap that can’t be filled.” Octavia smiled. Maybe Vinyl would be the first to understand.

She was beginning to feel a bit more open to talking. “To be honest I don’t really know why I want to be different. It’s just always been at the back of my mind.” Octavia said. Vinyl tried to take in as much information as she could. She wanted to know where Tavi was coming from.

“I never fit in with the girls when I was growing up. Sure, I had friends, but our interests were limited.” Octavia rolled over a bit and stared up at the ceiling. The slow turning fan cast light shadows on the pastel white as it turned. “They were always so superficial with their makeup and stuffed bras.” She laughed. “The only time they liked sports were when a hot guy was playing. I liked sports because they were fun to play.”

She paused a second to try to find words. “I guess I just never fit the stereotype for girls.” Vinyl agreed she wasn’t like most girls, but that was hardly a bad thing. Vinyl found most girls to be fairly annoying.

It was Vinyl’s turn to speak. “Just because you aren’t like most girls doesn’t mean you can’t be one.” Vinyl was hoping she was being constructive and not rude.

Octavia sighed. “I know, but it’s more than that. Since I was little I’d… well I’d always felt differently about guys.” She turned to face her friend. She noticed just how red her eyes were for the first time. “I never felt attracted to guys. I wanted to be like them more than to be with them.” Vinyl thought she understood. She had never felt attracted to her friends, but she knew how good it was to have a bro.

“I think I get that.” Vinyl said. Octavia was happy. No one had ever listened for this long. “I remember when I was younger I used to hang out with the guys a lot. They were cool and they were always doing something fun.” Her smile faded. “My parents got the wrong idea. They thought I had a crush on one of them.” Vinyl imagined her running around with a bunch of the guys. She had to admit, she would have probably gotten the wrong idea as well.

“One night my parents thought it would be a good idea to set me and one of them up on a date.” Octavia continued. “I didn’t really argue because I thought my friend knew me better than that.” She looked down towards her hooves and let her eyes close slightly. “I didn’t think he would take it so seriously.”

Vinyl could see where this was going. She could also imagine how the night could have been incredibly awkward.

Octavia sighed. “My mom made me dress up nice. I thought he would think that it was funny that I showed up so formal.” She adjusted her legs a bit. “It was… surprising when I saw him all dressed up.” She continued. “It looked like he actually wanted to be on a date.”

Vinyl nodded to indicate she was listening. She didn’t have much to add, but she wanted her friend to know she wasn’t zoning out.

“When we sat down for dinner, I joked about how formal we were.” Octavia’s eyes had a glazed look. “He said that I looked beautiful.” Vinyl smiled. Even though the guy didn’t know what was going on, at least he was a nice.

Octavia continued her story. “I didn’t want to be beautiful.” She said. “I didn’t want him to spend the rest of the night flirting with me. I just wanted to be his friend.” Octavia turned to Vinyl. “Is it wrong to just want to be friends?”

Vinyl couldn’t help but smile.

Ultimate friend zone.

“Of course it’s not.” She said. “But I’m sure he was just trying to be polite.”

Octavia frowned. “I know. But I didn’t want him to treat me like a girl he was trying to pick up.” She said. “I wanted dinner to be like he had it with his friends, splitting a pizza and talking about nothing important.”

Vinyl could see the issue. She tried to think back to her own life, and she admitted that none her female friends had been the same as her male ones. It wasn’t fair, but it was something that happened.

Vinyl tried to propose a solution. “I’m sure he would have been fine with just being your friend.” She said. “What happened after dinner?”

Octavia closed her eyes. “When we finished he offered to take me back to his place.”

Uh oh.

Vinyl knew firsthand what that line meant for a guy. She also knew that it wasn’t something Octavia would have been interested in.

Octavia continued. “I figured maybe we would play some video games or something. Like maybe we could just hang out.”

Vinyl sighed.

So naïve.

“Needless to say, that’s not what happened.” She finished.

Vinyl smiled. “I bet not.” She said. “What did happen?”

Octavia laughed a bit. “What do you think?” She said. “We went to his room and everything changed.” Octavia was getting more and more comfortable talking with her new friend. “He motioned for me to sit on the edge of his bed, in front of the TV.”

Any trace of emotion left Octavia’s face. “I was expecting for him to bring out controllers or something, but instead he grabbed my hand.”

Vinyl sighed. She hated to admit it, but she probably would have done the same thing.

“The next fifteen minutes or so were really awkward.” Octavia said softly. “I ended up getting so embarrassed that I just went home.”

Vinyl sat quietly in thought. She had to admit, that night sounded pretty unpleasant.

“He asked why I didn’t like him the next day at school.” Octavia said. “I just told him I wasn’t into him like that, but that I wanted to stay friends.” Her eyes started to tear up again. “He said that was fine, and he went to eat lunch with the guys.”

It was at this point that Vinyl figured out why the whole ordeal had been so sad for Octavia.

“He left me standing there.” She whimpered. “For the first time in years I wasn’t invited to their table.” Her eyes were very misty at this point. “I sat alone in the corner for the next week.” She continued. “I figured I’d give him some time and apologize.”

Vinyl rubbed her hoof through Octavia’s mane again. It seemed to calm her down a bit.

“I went to talk to him again a few days later.” She said, silently crying. “He said he wasn’t mad at me, and that we were still friends.”

Vinyl smiled a bit. “That’s good right? He wasn’t mad.”

Octavia let out her first audible sniffle. “Yeah, that’s great, but he never invited me to do stuff after that.” Her eyes were starting to turn really red. “We were less friends and more not enemies. After our date he didn’t want to hang out anymore. I was just a girl who wasn’t into him.”

Vinyl was beginning to tear up a bit at this point.

I can’t even imagine how that must feel.

“I couldn’t be his friend because I was a girl.” She said. “I tried again later to explain how I felt. I wanted him to know why I wasn’t attracted to him.”

“What did you tell him?” Vinyl asked.

Octavia sighed. “I told him I just wanted to be one of the guys. I didn’t like him that way because I didn’t like any men that way.” She paused. “I told him I would be a guy if I could.”

Octavia shivered a bit. “He didn’t take that well.”

Vinyl was listening more intently than she had ever listened in her life. “What did he say?”

Octavia closed her eyes hard. “He said I was starting to freak him out, and that I should leave.”

Vinyl let loose her first tear.

What a prick.

Octavia looked miserable. Vinyl pulled the blanket up over her and tried to calm her down.

“I ran home crying.” She said. “I spent the rest of my day in bed with my blinds closed and the door locked.” She was breathing hard now. “I lost my best friend because of my broken personality.

Vinyl quickly corrected her thinking.

“You are not broken.” Vinyl stated. “That guy was a prick for being so judgmental.” Octavia didn’t seem to listen. “If I was a normal girl, I would have wanted a relationship. I would have still been his friend.”

Vinyl moved a bit closer to Octavia.

“If you were like other girls, you wouldn’t be you. You shouldn’t have to change who you are to be important to someone.” Vinyl stated.

Octavia narrowed her eyes. “It doesn’t matter what I shouldn’t have to do. The world doesn’t work that way.” She sounded pissed.

I know it doesn’t.

Octavia quickly lost her flair of anger. “I lost my best friend by telling him the truth. He didn’t like who I was or the way I felt.” She continued. “I never told anyone else my whole story. Sure, I let people know I was a tomboy, but I never told them why.”

Octavia was curled up under the sheets. There was a damp spot where her head had been resting, and she looked completely heartbroken.

“I didn’t want to lose anyone else.” She concluded. “So I kept to myself. I never even told my parents. I didn’t want them to think badly of me.”

Vinyl couldn’t take watching her friend like this anymore. She scooted up next to her and wrapped her hooves around her back. She didn’t care if it was awkward, her friend needed someone.

“I’m sorry” Vinyl said, embracing her friend in the hug. “I’m sorry you had to go through that.”

Octavia didn’t move. She just laid there absorbing her friends embrace. Vinyl had understood where she was coming from. She had told her everything and Vinyl had no response but understanding. For the first time in her life someone knew who she really was.

She started to cry, much harder than before, but unlike earlier she was happy. “No one has ever been there for me Vinyl.” She managed to whisper through her sobs. “Thank you. Thank you so much.”

Vinyl was crying too. She knew she would never feel the pain Octavia felt, but she was glad she trusted her enough to share it.

Octavia tried to hold back her sobs. “I’ll uh, I’ll be honest.” She said. “The only reason I told you all of this was because I didn’t know you that well. I figured if you didn’t understand it wouldn’t hurt so much if you hated me.”

Vinyl knew it was true. Still, she was glad she opened up to her.

“It’s just, when I woke up female this morning,” Octavia said. “I was angry. I felt cheated.”

Octavia managed to stop the tears long enough to talk. “That night at the convention, when Daniel said we would become a random pony,” she paused long enough to catch her breath. “I… I thought it could be a second chance, that I could have a chance to be me freely, without people judging my life.”

She sighed. “I knew the odds were small of being male, but I figured maybe fate would be kind to me.”

Vinyl held her close.

Fate can be very cruel.

“When I woke up like this…” She whispered. “I was just so upset. I wanted to be me.”

Vinyl nuzzled her friend’s cheek.

“You will always be you Tavi.” Vinyl assured quietly. “I know who you are, and I feel sorry for everyone who never got the chance.”

Octavia rested her head against her friend. “Thank you Vinyl. It’s nice to have someone so understanding.”

Vinyl closed her eyes. It was late, they must have talked for at least a few hours. She figured they would be able to sleep in, so it didn’t matter much anyways.

Octavia didn’t want to move. She had spent so much of her life feeling alone, she never wanted this moment to end.

“Vinyl?” Octavia asked.

Vinyl’s ear twitched and she opened her eyes. “Yeah Tavi?”

Octavia blushed slightly. “Do you mind if I sleep here tonight?” She hoped that she wouldn’t be intruding.

Vinyl smiled. “I wouldn’t have it any other way.” She pulled the blankets up over them both and she turned off the light with her magic. She could feel Octavia’s sigh of relief on her chest as she snuggled a bit closer to her.

Vinyl closed her eyes again, this time with a great smile. She held her new friend tight as she felt her fall asleep. Her heart felt almost as warm as her body under the comforters.

Quickly Vinyl joined her friend in sleep. It had been a long day and she was happy to have helped a friend. Deep within her grasp Octavia wore a gentle smile. She had gone out on a limb to show her friend her true self, and Vinyl had understood and accepted her. For the first time in years Octavia fell asleep without feeling alone.