• Published 2nd Feb 2019
  • 697 Views, 8 Comments

Cannabis Shakes - garatheauthor

Two girls share a joint and talk about how hard life can kick you in the nuts.

  • ...

Cannabis Shakes

Rainbow Dash was locked outside of her apartment building. She had one hand crammed in her pocket, cradling a small ziplock bag, while the other pressed a familiar brass call button.

“Come on Sunset, I’m freezing my ass off out here,” she grumbled under her breath.

She repeatedly jammed her finger into the button, as if she believed that the twelfth chime was more likely to summon Sunset than the eleventh.

Buzz. Buzz. Buzz. Buzzzzzz

Finally, after what felt like a hundred years, the line crackled to life.

“Yes, hello,” Sunset Shimmer growled. “How can I help you?”

Rainbow smirked. “Hey babe, it’s me.”

Sunset snorted, her temper rapidly cooling. “Do you have any idea how annoying it is when you ring the bell like a thousand times?”

“I was cold and forgot my keys!”

“Alright, alright, I’m coming down. Hold on a sec.”

The line clicked, going silent.

Rainbow tapped her foot impatiently, leaning against a small stone divit which protected the door from the elements. It did little to guard against the frigid air as another burst of sub-zero wind robbed her of what little warmth she had left.

Not that she had much to spare in the first place. It had been one hell of a day and she desperately needed to blow off a little steam with her girlfriend. Maybe watch a movie, play some games, have sex…

She squeezed the little baggy in her pocket.

Maybe even smoke some pot, if things went right.

Rainbow’s ears perked as she heard someone thud down the final flight of stairs. She pushed away from her cover, and a moment later, the door cracked open with Sunset peering out.

“Hey Rainbow,” she said.

Rainbow grinned. “Hey.”

She stepped towards the door and ducked forwards, giving Sunset a peck on the lips.

Such a tender little connection was enough to make Rainbow crack an almost genuine smile.

Sunset smirked and returned the kiss as she pushed open the door a little more, gesturing for Rainbow to come inside.

Rainbow quickly slipped by and into Sunset’s warm embrace. Almost instantly, the arctic cold began to subside as Sunset squeezed tight, sharing her precious warmth.

One of Sunset’s hands instinctively pressed into her shoulder, massaging a tight little cluster of muscles that an old sport’s injury had left behind. Sunset was the only person who knew that it still hurt in cold weather.

“You’re freezing,” Sunset said.

“It’s fucking cold outside.”

Sunset nodded and took a step back, giving Rainbow a little room. “So how was your day?”

“Absolutely dog shit,” she grunted. “Yours?”

Sunset frowned. “What happened?”

“Just…” she waved it off. “…Today was our first match without Spitfire. Felt pretty shitty without her there. Probably why we got absolutely wrecked.”

“What was the score?”


Sunset whistled. “That bad?”

“Worse. We were facing Appleloosa State.”

“Aren’t they at the bottom of the league?”


They made their way up the stairs, heading to the top floor.

“Do they have any idea how long she’ll be out for?” Sunset asked.

Rainbow shook her head. “At least the rest of the season. A torn ACL is…it’s bad, babe. Like, that can be a career ender.”

Sunset winced. “I’m so sorry.”

Rainbow shrugged. “It happens, I just wish it hadn’t happened to Spitfire.”

They reached their apartment’s floor before turning and making their way towards it. Sunset then fiddled with a ring of keys, shoving one into the lock and letting them in.

While the building might’ve been low-income, the apartments were actually quite spacious. This was especially true for the studios at the top, which offered a generous amount of space for what they were paying. Rainbow loved theirs especially, with its mismatching furniture, open layout, and clashing décor. It all just had this really chill atmosphere.

“I hope you don’t mind, but I brought a little weed,” Rainbow said once Sunset had closed the door behind them.


“Nah, Pinkie didn’t have any, so I just got a couple joints from Soarin.”

She took the little bag out of her pocket, placing it on the counter. Inside the first plastic bag was a second and then a third. Inside this innermost bag were a few neatly wrapped joints.

“What kind did you get?” Sunset asked.

“Uh, a blend of sativas.”

“Sounds like fun.”

“I hope so…”

Sunset frowned, gently placing her hand on Rainbow’s arm. “Anything else eating at you that I should worry about.”

Rainbow snorted. “Well let’s see…” She held up her hand, counting her fingers one by one. “Spitfire’s injury, messing with the back half of our season, struggling with freaking intro-to-chemistry, which should be a bird course, found out that Fluttershy’s brother is being a total shithead again, wondering if I can afford rent, food, and meds without selling my freaking blood, plus work is fucking me over and being incredibly shitty.”

Each of her problems felt like another stone tied around her ankles, threatening to drag her under as she felt the familiar creep of anxious thoughts on the edge of her mind. If she wasn’t carefully they were likely to.

She shrugged off Sunset’s hand and rested against the counter.

“What happened this time?” Sunset asked.

Rainbow shook her head. “Got in a fight with a customer who made a really fucked up comment about a girl who works with me.”

“Which girl?”

“Field Goal.”

“Oh, she’s the other trans girl, right?”

Rainbow nodded.

“Well I’m sure you did the right thing, hun,” Sunset said.

“I just wish management saw it that way.”

“Management is usually run by spineless bastards.”

“True.” Rainbow chuckled, shaking her head. “I’m still holding out for that glorious revolution Fluttershy and Tree Hugger keep going on about.”

The two of them stood in silence for a moment before Sunset slid over and placed her hand on Rainbow’s, giving it a gentle squeeze.

Rainbow smiled softly and squeezed back.

“Have you eaten yet?” Sunset asked.

“Yeah, me and the team went out for dinner after the game,” she said, “how about you?”

“Made myself some fine gourmet food.”

“Oh did you, now?” Rainbow smirked. “Which frozen meal did you have?”

Sunset looked away guiltily. “I have no idea what you’re talking about...but it was a Chicken Coltma.”

“Oh, that one’s my favourite.”

“I know, right!?”

Rainbow glanced at the little baggie on the counter. “So…do you wanna light up now or…?”

“Isn’t it a little early?”

She shrugged. “Honestly, after the day I’ve had, I don’t really fucking care.”

“Fair enough,” Sunset said, gesturing to the balcony. “I’ll meet you out there, I gotta grab my sweater.”

Rainbow nodded and scooped up the bag before stepping out. It wasn’t ideal going back into the cold, but it beat the hell out of having their whole apartment reek of weed.

A minute later Sunset joined her, plopping down into one of three unoccupied deck chairs.

As per their décor each chair was radically different from the last, with all of them coming from different suburban curbs.

Rainbow placed the joints down between them while Sunset added an ashtray and lighter to the mix.

“Where did Soarin get this stuff?” Sunset asked.

She picked up the joint and began to open the various bags. When only one remained, the odour of a good quality product was palpable.

“He orders his stuff online from a dispensary out west. Seaddle, I think”

“So, it’s the good shit then?”

“Way better than anything we can get in Canterlot.”

Sunset popped open the final baggie and pulled out a nice little joint. Along with the smell of weed there was also something with a slight tropical tang.

She grinned. “Haywaiian paper, nice.”

“I thought you might like it.”

Sunset offered her the joint. “You want the first drag.”

Rainbow waved her off. “Nah, you can have it.”

Sunset smiled, placing the filter in her mouth before sparking her lighter and bringing the flame to the joint’s narrowed tip.

As it caught, she breathed slowly and exhaled quickly. There was nothing of value in the first puff.

The second one however, had Sunset breathe in deep, taking a nice hit. She stayed still, staring vacantly at Canterlot’s skyline. Eventually she slowly exhaled, allowing a billow of greyish smoke to waft gingerly into the air.

“Not bad,” Sunset commented.

“I thought you might like it.”

Sunset handed the joint to Rainbow, who stuck the filter between her lips and breathed in deep, allowing the smoke to pool in her cheeks. It was a nice smooth drag, with a warm taste that bore no sour or bitter imperfections.

This really was the good shit.

She breathed in through her nose, allowing the clean air to guide the warm smoke into her lungs. It tingled, and for a moment, she nearly broke out into a coughing fit. Thankfully, she managed to retain her dignity and not look like such an amateur smoker.

There wasn’t a buzz yet, but there was still a very pronounced placebo which soothed Rainbow’s shaken nerves.

She hadn’t really grasped how desperately she needed that hit until now. It was almost liberating, having the weight of a million responsibilities lifted from her shoulders.

The smoke continued to saturate her lungs, causing the tingle to intensify. She let it build before it transitioned into a painful burn, forcing her to exhale and allow the smoke to drift away.

She then tapped the joint out into Sunset’s ashtray before placing it there to rest.

“Holy fuck,” Rainbow muttered, looking to Sunset with a toothy grin. “That is some really good weed.”

“No kidding.”

They were silent, just letting the THC and CBD mingle. It wasn’t long before the placebo was replaced by something with far more substance.

“So, what’s up with intro-chemistry?” Sunset asked, finally breaking the mellowness between them as she glanced over at Rainbow

Rainbow looked away. “Nothing much to talk about. I don’t get the material, so I need to study, but I don’t have time to study, so I just end up bombing the class.” She snorted. “Which kind of sucks because…I actually don’t hate this one.”

Sunset faked a gasp. “The Rainbow Dash, enjoying a science class. I need to phone Twilight.”

“Harr. Harr. Harr. I don’t know, I guess I like the labs and stuff. Plus, the professor is kind of into sports. Which is surprising for an egghead.”

“He is?”

Rainbow nodded. “Huge fan of the Canterlot Senators.” She sighed. “For real though, do you have any ideas what I should do?”

Sunset shook her head. “I’m guessing you can’t spend less time on sports?”

“No, the team needs me and I need the team if I have any shot at making the majors.”

“How about reducing your hours at work?”

“Could our budget handle that?”

She already knew the answer. It was the same answer that hounded them through the last eighteen months of university. No, no they couldn’t. They were stuck like this until some miracle sprung up to save them.

Sunset sighed. “Maybe? I’m sure we can…”

“I’m not going to make us tighten our belts anymore. Our food bill is already as low as it’s going to be without killing us, this place is dirt cheap, and it’s not like I can just stop transitioning to save a few bucks.”

Sunset threw her hands up in defeat. “Then I got nothing, babe.”

Rainbow sighed, picking the joint back up. Thankfully, the tip was still smoldering as she put the filter to her lips and took another deep drag. She then offered it to Sunset as the smoke settled in her lungs.

Sunset took it and repeated the motion before dropping the joint back in its ashtray.

For a moment they were both silent, each taking the time to let the weed work its way into their systems.

Rainbow was the first to exhale, letting out a shaky cough as the smoke leapt from her mouth, followed immediately by a few dry wracking coughs.

She leaned forwards and Sunset pounded her on the back.

“You alright?” Sunset asked, gracefully exhaling her own smoke as she reached up and tenderly stroked Rainbow’s hair

Rainbow nodded, though her coughing made verbalizing a response impossible.

“You gotta take it slow, babe. Smoking weed isn’t a race.”

“S-sorry,” Rainbow finally managed to wheeze.

“It’s all good.”

They leaned back into their chairs and each took a deep breath of the chilly urban air.

For Rainbow, the effects of her two puffs were already noticeable. Her vision was just a smidge hazy with a blur present when she tried to focus upon structures in the distance. They almost seemed to swim on the horizon, the illusion manipulated by her buzz and the city’s lights.

Her brain felt a little numb as the anxieties of her troubles slowly bled away.

This was always such a nice feeling, just the numbness of existing rather than the stress of living. She almost wished she could stay in this blissfulness for more than a couple hours every week.

She took a deep breath through her mouth, feeling the dryness of her lips, the slight tingle on the burnt tip of her tongue, and the lingering taste of marijuana with a tropical tang. Her fingers and toes were a little numb and her limbs felt floaty as if they were only a fraction of their usual weight. All the while her eyes were dry, sore, and heavy, losing their battle against a sudden sleepiness.

“Do you know the THC content in this?” Sunset asked. She sounded so distant, like she was across the room rather than right beside her. Rainbow reached out and grabbed her arm, proving to her addled self that Sunset was still there...right beside her...close.

“No, I uh, I didn’t think about asking Soarin.”

“Then you should probably take it easy, babe. This stuff feels way more potent than what we usually get.”

Rainbow nodded and immediately snatched the joint back up, throwing Sunset’s caution to the wind. Sadly, the tip was extinguished, forcing her to grab Sunset’s lighter and reignite it. She then took her third drag, repeating the process of easing the marijuana into her lungs, holding it until it became uncomfortable, and then letting it out nice and slow.

When Rainbow looked over, she noticed Sunset had not joined in a third puff, instead opting to just stare out at the city while fiddling with the straps of her hoodie.

“How are things with you, hun?” Rainbow asked, giving Sunset’s arm a little squeeze.

Sunset chuckled. “Surviving.”

“Sounds about right.”

“You know what’s fucked up?”


“If I’d stayed in Equestria I would probably be an ambassador, or princess, or hell, even gainfully employed right now. Now look at me, a fucking waitress.”


She sneered. “I know, I know. This is just a temporary gig to get me through school, but still, I can’t help feeling a little ripped off.”

She reached over and grabbed the joint, finally taking a much needed third drag.

“Gods,” she muttered, blowing it out in frustration. “What would Celestia think if she could see me now? Poor, sad, and stoned.” She dropped the blunt back in its ashtray. “Probably send me to Tartarus, or boarding school, or something. You know, whatever you do with wayward rich kids.”

Rainbow snorted. “Probably boarding school, sending them to hell sounds a little extreme.”

“It’s not really hell, it’s more of a…” She chuckled. “You know what? It doesn’t really matter.”

The silence settled between them again, and for a moment, their only company was awkwardness and the tiny wisps of smoke which wafted from Sunset’s ashtray.

“Do you think I made a mistake by staying here?” Sunset asked.

“No way, you’re way better off here than back in Equestria. Like your friends, family, and future are all here, Sunset. I know Princess Twilight and Celestia would gladly take you back but…you’d need to rebuild your entire life.”

Sunset groaned. “Trueeee. Still, I’d probably end up with a cushy job.”

“Babe, cushy isn’t your style. I know you. You want a job where you’d leave a lasting legacy on the world and I think you’d do way more here, as a biologist, than you could ever do as some imperial desk jockey back in Equestria.”

Sunset smirked. “I could always find fulfillment through my hobbies.”

“Are you going to do that, though?”

“Phhhh, probably not, but it’s worth a shot.”

Rainbow sighed, feeling another ounce of weight added to her worries. “If…if you’re serious about it, then I’m sure we can work something out.”

Sunset shook her head. “It’s…I don’t know. I think I’m just in a mood tonight.”

“Tell me about it.”

Rainbow looked at the blunt, realizing that there wasn’t much left. Maybe two puffs, but most likely just one good drag.

“Mind if I kill it?” Rainbow asked, gesturing to the ashtray.

Sunset solemnly waved her hand. “Go for it. I think I’m good for the night.”

Rainbow nodded and picked up the blunt. There was always something so great about the last puff. Just the way the warmth of the embers felt against your lips as you inhaled, the sensation of the hot smoke as it entered your lungs, the way your chest warmed as if you’d just taken a shot of hard liquor.

She held the smoke for as long as she could, waiting for the hotness to really irritate her. It took at least half a minute before she was forced to exhale through her nose, a few stray coughs accompanying it.

Rainbow ground out the filter, leaving it behind in the ashtray. She then leaned back and closed her eyes, taking a nice deep breath of the clean evening air.

Well, as clean as an inner-city apartment building could offer.

“Life’s a bitch,” she mumbled.

She didn’t need to open her eyes to know that Sunset was nodding along.

“At least we have each other,” Sunset said, offering her warmest smile.

“At least we have each other,” Rainbow agreed, returning it.

She felt a hand brush against her own and gently squeezed it.

“Are you sure there’s nothing else on your mind?”

Rainbow sighed. “Spitfire is going to lose her scholarship.”

Sunset’s grip tightened. “What!”

“When the doctors came back with her…” She rolled her free hand. “…injury report?”


“Yeah, her prognosis, the uh coach let her go from the active team, put her on as an assistant until the end of the season.” Rainbow felt a lump in her throat. “But...once the season’s over she’ll be up for a performance review, and unless she’s made some miraculous recovery by then, she’s probably not going to make the team next year. And without the team…” She sighed, waving her hand to fill in the blank.

“She won’t keep her scholarship?”


“Why would your coach do that? Spitfire is like your second-best player?”

Rainbow smirked. “Thanks for the vote of confidence babe but Spitfire was our best player. I just…I don’t think you understand. A torn ACL is...” She felt the lump thicken and quiver, as tears threatened her eyes. “She’ll be out for at least the rest of the season and there is a very real chance that she won’t fully recover until graduation, if she graduates. Hell, her injury might be permanent if she fucks around with physio, which knowing her, she’ll probably push herself way too hard.”

“But still, they’re taking away her scholarship? That’s…”


Rainbow opened one of her eyes and noticed Sunset nodding silently. Both their hands had drifted apart by now, the intimacy of the moment having passed.

“It is,” Rainbow said.

“I’m so sorry, I know how close you and Spitfire were.”

“Yeah, and it’s just…I don’t know.”

“Babe you’re shivering.”

Rainbow suddenly became aware of the fact that she was shaking uncontrollably. She licked her dry lips and tried to swallow that stubborn lump in her throat. Then she felt the claminsess of her skin under the increasingly tight fabric of her shirt. She felt the beating of he heart quicken, thundering away within her panicked-gripped chest.

Oh awesome, a weed-induced anxiety attack. It was going to be one of those nights, was it?

“Come on, let’s get you inside,” Sunset said.

She helped Rainbow to her feet and together they made their way back into the apartment. However, even the warm embrace of their radiators did little to tackle the shivering.

Sunset led her towards the couch, gesturing for her to take seat. “Sit down, hun.”

Rainbow did as instructed, falling onto the sofa. She hugged herself tight, rubbing her arms in an effort to warm them. However, this did little.

Oh god, oh god, oh god. This was bad.

Sunset grabbed a thick blanket, tossing it to her.

“Here, see if this helps,” she said.

Rainbow caught it and quickly wrapped herself up. Yet, the anxiety was ever present, creeping upon her even under the comfort of a blanket. It dug its claws into her, clouding her mind and filling it with a million little problems as the wave of all her stresses washed over her.

“Do you want something to drink?” Sunset asked.

She gritted her teeth and nodded. “Juice. P-please.”

Sunset nodded and hurried walked to the kitchen, filling a glass.

As she returned, Rainbow took it and desperately tried to steady her hands as she took a sip. The juice was tangy, doing wonders to hydrate her chapped lips and dry throat.

Sunset sat beside her and crawled under the blanket, pressing her warm body against hers and wrapping her arms loosely around her midsection. This wasn’t Rainbow’s first anxiety attack with Sunset present, and she knew to be careful and not squeeze too tightly, lest her comforting grip further constrict her frantic bursts of breath.

With the extra body, it rapidly became a furnace under the quilt. Yet, Rainbow still couldn’t stop shivering. Every couple of seconds a spastic spark would arc through her nerves, causing her to jitter uncontrollably.

“Are you alright, babe?” Sunset asked.

Rainbow chuckled grimly, leaning against Sunset “Think I… I smoked a little too much.”

Sunset kissed her on the cheek. “Happens to the best of us.”

She gently nuzzled Rainbow’s neck as both their hands met under the blanket.

“Are you ok?” Sunset asked.

Rainbow nodded, even though it felt like a fist was gripping her heart.

“Do… you want to continue talking about Spitfire’s injury?”

Rainbow sighed. “I don’t know… I guess so? I have a lot on my mind!”

“Like what?”

“Just got me thinking? Like, what if I get hurt? I’m a striker, I’m probably going to get injured.”

“And you’re worried about losing your scholarship?”

Rainbow swallowed hard. “I’m worried that I’ll lose everything, babe. These next few years are either going to make or break me.”

“How so?”

“Like what else am I good at? I’ve trained my whole life to be the best at sports and have absolutely nothing else. I don’t have any other practical skills, I don’t know any trades, and I’m floundering in university. Like there are only two futures for me. Either I make it big in sports or…”


“I’m stuck in retail for the rest of my life until I’m broken down and tossed aside.”


There were tears bubbling in Rainbow’s eyes. She gritted her teeth and tried to look away. However, Sunset placed a comforting hand upon her cheek, guiding her back over.

“Rainbow,” Sunset repeated. “I don’t believe for a second that you only have two paths in life. You’re Rainbow fucking Dash. If you see an obstacle in front of you, you go through it with all the passion and fury you can muster. If life kicks you down, you get right back up and fucking kick its ass. Maybe your sports career won’t lead anywhere, but I don’t believe for a second that you’re just going to give up and die.”

She leaned in and kissed her. Both their lips felt warm and dry but neither seemed to mind as they held their union.

As they finally parted, Sunset took a breath. “You told me that I wouldn’t be content with a job that didn’t impact the world, and I know for a fact that you’re the exact same. You are destined for great things babe, and I know that in the end, this world will remember your name.”

Rainbow reached out from under the covers and wiped away her tears. The tendrils of anxiety were still present but they no longer seemed to grip her chest as tightly, allowing her a much needed breath.

“T-thanks, Sunset,” she mumbled.

“Don’t mention it, it’s what girlfriends are for. Sometimes you just need a little help staying anchored.”

“Fuck,” Rainbow grumbled. “I’m way too high right now.”

Sunset kissed her again. “I know, and I’ll be right here when you come back down.”

“Thanks babe.” Rainbow closed her eyes and sniffled. “And…I’ll always be here for you too.”

“And you want to know something?” Sunset asked.


“Even if all our dreams end up amounting to nothing, we’ll always have each other.” She smiled. “And that’ll always be enough for me.”

Rainbow grinned. “That’ll always be enough for me too, babe.”

Author's Note:

Hey there, I hope you all enjoyed this fic, and thank you so much for reading it all the way to the end.

This was originally written in November when I was having a hell of a lot of self-doubt towards my writing and also started dabbling in weed. The reaction of having anxiety attacks induced by weed was a thing that actually happened to me (probably due to my history of anxiety attacks) and it was an utterly abysmal experience. Meanwhile, Rainbow's self doubts about a future in sports was kind of me venting about how hopeless I felt in regards to my writing and a future in writing. It wasn't an easy story to tell but the writing and editing or it was a cathartic experience which helped me, not quite find closure, but put some of my issues to rest.

If you did enjoy it, I'd be happy to hear back from you in the comments, and as always likes and favourites makes me and my e-peen feel good. Also also, I do have a ko-fi if you feel like tossing me a few dollars.

Comments ( 8 )

This was really good. I notice that there's little to no feedback here, which makes me sad, because this was really good. I don't typically read dramatic stuff, for fear of cliche sh*t. But this was really good. No spelling errors, just cold, sardonic truth. Real fear. Real hurt. You injected a rare ship into a chronically neglected perspective, and it turned out beautiful. You nailed what the characters would be like in a grittier, harsher world. The college age is usually depicted as leisurely when it comes to the mane 6, but you took the hard path. You made it realistic, and thank you for that. Think you're a bad writer? That's b.s, (or more accurately horse sh*t.) You are a fantastic writer! It's just that your style is so coldly candid, that it seems like it's far too overlooked. This was beautiful.

Your comment made the stress of writing, publishing, deleting, and undeleting this fic worth every second. Thank you so much for these words, you have no idea how much they mean to me.

Are you kidding? It's no problem! I hate when stories like this don't get the credit they deserve simply because people can't take the time to let the writer know how they feel. As creators feedback is what unironically feeds us- makes us want more and motivates us. So no, I don't know how much this means to you... but I am happy that you realize how good this is. Because this is so worth all the effort I know you put in. 😍

I don't frequently leave comments on this site but I thought this was a great fic! The realism of the story was a little unexpected for an MLP story at first but it ultimately made the story really unique and memorable.

What's a cannabis?

Oh my gosh, thank you so much. I'm really glad you took the time to comment and it's really reassuring to hear that people liked my realism.

Weed, grass, marijuana.

I always feel uncomfortable when reading something drawn this deeply from a writer's soul. It's like I'm intruding on a deeply personal process expressed through the characters. Brilliant work in expressing the anxieties of the age, and in the characters' affirmations of one another.

Actually, it's a great job. It's not for me to judge, but I think you have a talent. To be honest, I felt sad after reading your work. It's all very similar to my life, even so much that I want to quit everything and smoke a joint. The same shitty job, debts, small salary. The world sucks, and so do our lives, because they depend on little things. It always seemed to me that our purpose is something more than just living our lives. I'm going to smoke a joint and talk about my life, that's all I can do. One thing pleases me, although I can calmly smoke and relax.


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