• Published 10th May 2019
  • 2,327 Views, 65 Comments

Is a Shark Mare's Bark Worse Than Her Bite? - Robipony



You have come to Haywaiian to make some research for your next book. It is here in this island paradise that you meet the diamond dog, Holly and a shark pony named Jagged Nibble. Enjoy your stay.

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Day 4 - Kaumaha

All around you, there was water. It was dark and cold, sapping the heat from your coat. Even as you swam in the deep, you could feel something else moving through the water. The sound of the swirling currents filled your ears.

With no way to see in the darkness, you cast a light spell to illuminate the water around you. Due to the density of the water, the light of your magic didn't spread far, only just long enough to confirm your fears, as a gray tail disappeared into the surrounding darkness.

You watched wide eyed as you watched a shadow moving through the darkness. Slowly it moved past you, just enough to pass through your light, revealing its form. Your heart froze as Jag swam into view, her mouth opened wide, teeth bared, the pupils of her eyes dilated, filled with a primal hunger that would make a dragon sweat.

This wasn't Jag. It looked like her, but this beast was something else entirely. It was Jag ripped clean of all the things that made up her personality, replaced by the hunter instincts of an ancient killing machine.

Once more Jag vanished into the deep, bubbles trailing her as she moved. You keep watching the darkness, looking out for her shadow. Seeing some bubbles drifting upwards you tried to swim to the surface, however even as you ascended all you could see was darkness. Occasionally you would see Jag pass through the light, not enough to see her, just enough to know that she was still hunting you.

Then in a flash you saw something swooping in out of the corner of your vision. Turning you watched a rows of sharp teeth advanced toward you, ready to bite into your flesh. You tried lifting your hooves but they were slow to respond in this frigid water.

Yet before the maw could take a bite out of you the world came to a halt. It was as if time had stopped by itself.

"You seem to be troubled, my subject." a regal, feminine voice filled the watery void.

A glowing blue doorway appeared in the depths and a pony stepped through; a tall blue alicorn with a flowing mane filled with the stars. While you hadn't had the privilege to see her in person, you knew the mare before you was none other than the princess of the moon herself.

The princess walked through the water with ease, focusing her attention to the primal shark mare that was the centerpiece of your nightmare.

"She is an odd one." Princess Luna said, "Though I have a feeling you know her. Am I correct?"

You would have replied, but you were still frozen in the dream.

"Oh, yes let me fix that."

With a wave of a hoof, the entire scene evaporated into a sea of stars. As a result you landed on your hooves, on the invisible space that served as a floor.

"Let's take this to my study if you don't mind."

Luna proceeded to walk toward a wooden door that had materialized in the dreamscape. Her horn glowing a soft blue as she turned the knob, opening the door and gesturing for you to step inside. You were so awestruck by the turn of events that it took a moment for your legs to register that they needed to move.

Stepping through the doorway, you found yourself in a large room, with wooden floors, dark blue walls and a skylight overhead, revealing a star filled night sky with the moon at its center. Occasionally glowing shapes resembling yellow fish would pass by the skylight window. Bookshelves covered portions of the walls along with a few bust showing the faces of a few famous star gazers, chiseled into stone. There was also a wooden railing, with a set of stairs leading down to another area with a desk and two large chairs, both of which were facing toward a fireplace. The orange and yellow flames within served as a warm contrast to the rest of the room.

"Please take a seat," Luna said, "I will be with you shortly."

You obeyed the princess's orders right, descending into the main study and sitting down in one of the chairs. Meanwhile, Luna went through a door off to the side and disappeared for a moment.

As you sat, you decided to examine your surroundings a little further. Above the fireplace was a painting showing Princess Luna and Princess Celestia sitting next to one another. On the mantle above the fire, were various models of the moon.

After a moment, Princess Luna returned, wearing a purple bathrobe and carrying a tray with a teapot and two cups. As Luna sat down in the chair opposite of you a small table appeared, for the tray to rest on.

"Would you like some tea?" Luna asked, "don't worry, you're still sleeping and the tea shouldn't wake you from your slumber, just help you relax from your nightmarish ordeal."

"Uh, thank you."

A cup was poured for each of you, before being levitated to their respective owners. Taking a sip of your tea, you noticed the flavor of lavender with just a slight undertone of ginseng.

As you sat there and observed Luna in her relaxed state, you couldn't help but notice that she looked cute in this casual manner. Wearing the purple silk bathrobe and no longer adorned by her royal jewelry, Luna was quite alluring.

Luna noticed your gaze and smiled, "Oh, don't mind this. Let's just say I was about to retire when I noticed your plight. Now enlighten me on the little nightmare you were having."

Thankful for the distraction you began to recall the nightmare, Luna had rescued you from.

"Well, I was underwater and my friend... Was swimming around me, except she wasn't herself."

"How so?"

"Well, like you saw she was more bestial," you responded, "I've never seen her like that."

"Then why did you dream of it?"

You took another sip of the tea. "Recently a friend of mine who used to be one of her friends, told me of something like this happening."

Luna raised a hoof, "Why don't you tell me the names of these friends. It will make things easier, besides what happens here stays here."

Taking a deep breath you complied, "Jagged Nibble, or Jag as she likes to be addressed, was the shark pony in my dream. Recently I have become friends with both her and Holly. Holly is a diamond dog I have meet during my visit in the Haywaiian islands. Apparently they used to be friends at one point, however it sounds like Jag may have bitten Holly and now she feels she can't trust her."

"That seems fair," Luna said, "if someone attacks you it only makes sense that one would be more interested in protecting themselves then relying on the one who caused such wounds."

"The thing is, I don't know if Jag even knows she harmed Holly. Holly says Jag acted like she didn't remember and Jag believes the rift was caused because she accidentally hit on Holly's sirefriend."

"Sirefriend you say..."

"Uh, yes."

It seemed a little odd that Luna would take interest in that particular word. Luna shook her head as if trying to refocus, before taking a deep sip of her tea and clearing her throat.

"Do you have a reason to doubt either of them?" Luna asked.

"No, they both seem to be pretty genuine."

Luna took another sip of her tea.

"So if Jag did indeed attack your friend, Holly, then is there anything you can think of that might cause her to forget?"

You pondered this question and you did recall something Holly had said. 'At the last luau we had been on, Jag had had a lot to drink. A lot more than usual. We were walking along the beach, like you and I are now, when I voiced my concerns to her, however she wouldn't listen.' In fact, it seemed like Jag enjoyed drinking a lot. After hanging out with her, you had the hangover to prove it.

"She does drink quite a bit." You answered.

Luna stroked her chin with a hoof.

"That could certainly be the cause of her forgetfulness," Luna pondered, "do you know anything about Jag's past?"

"Nothing really. All she told me was that apparently she and two other shark ponies washed ashore one day."

"Hmm..." Luna resumed scratching her chin. As she sat there, considering what you had said, a thought came to mind. Perhaps Luna could help fill in the blanks.

"Is it possible that you could perhaps look into her dreams and..."

"No!" Princess Luna said bluntly, "If I were to share the dreams of one of my subjects with another without permission I would be breaking the trust my subjects place in me. No, I am afraid you will have to figure that out on your own."

You took a deep breath as you acknowledged Luna's statement. You knew full well that you wouldn't want some of your dreams or nightmares shared with others, so clearly it would be wrong to expect that to be ignored for your account. With a nod you agreed with her objection.

"Yeah, you're right. I suppose that was a pretty dumb question to ask."

Luna craned her head to the side, a small smile on her lips.

"You really care about them, don't you?"

"Well, they're my friends," you replied, "so I would like to help them before I return from my trip."

"Well, you now have an idea what might be the source of the problem." Luna smiled. "That is a place to start at least."

"Yeah, I suppose you're right."

Suddenly a romantic jazz tube started to play in the room. In your confusion, you looked around and realized that you were not alone.

Stepping forth from the shadows was a muscular looking diamond dog with brown fur and bright amber eyes. Around his neck was a lei of red flowers and held between his teeth by the stem was a single rose. Pink and white rose pedals followed in his wake and despite all the flowers he exuded the fragrance of pure masculinity.

"Hello my dear." The newcomer said in a sultry voice, before offering the rose to Luna.

"Kanene!" Luna exclaimed, "What did I tell you about showing up while I am talking with one of my subjects?"

"Luna dear, don't you remember? It's time for our... appointment."

Hearing Luna state the newcomer's name, a realization occurred to you as you remembered something Holly had said during the Ultra-Fetch game yesterday.

"Hey, isn't Kanene, the Haywaiian god of the sun," you inquired, "as well as fertility?"

A bright pink blush filled Luna's face, indicating that there might be some truth to the matter.

"I think it is time you woke up now."

Before you could say anything more, you found yourself sprawled out on your bed. An electric jazz tune played over the radio. While you pay there, a part of hoped it had happened and another part of you hoped that what you had experienced was just a really weird dream brought on by the music you coming over the radio. As you lay there, you wondered if perhaps the weird dream was brought on by a combination of the music and the fish you had eaten during the luau.

Looking toward the contraption, you noticed the gecko sitting next to you on the bed.

"Oh, for crying out loud!"


"What do you think?" You asked as you posed in the new, dark green rain coat you had just purchased.

Holly nodded, "I think it suits you well."

Your heart seemed to swell with the complement, possibly two sizes. No doubt the byproduct of having a unicorn's ego.

Holly was herself wearing a bright yellow raincoat.

"So what is the plan for today?" You inquired.

"Today I thought I would show you the Gemstone Harbor memorial," Holly answered, "it is a historical landmark for our people, so I thought you might find it interesting."

"Indeed. Will it be a long walk from here?"

Holly giggled, "Yes, if we were to walk there. Fortunately there is another method of transportation here on the islands."

You followed Holly to a long building, with the words, HOWL Tran Transit. Stepping inside you found yourself in a train station similar to the one you used often to move between Ponyville and Canterlot, and once to the Crystal Empire. It was a fond memory for you.

"Somethings aren't so different." You said, a slight twinge of remorse in your tone.

"What?" Holly asked, confused by your statement.

"Oh, sorry," you apologized, "this station is just awfully similar to the one I ride back home."

Holly smiled, "I'm glad you like it. We should probably stand in line, if we want to make it there before the rain gets too bad."

"Yeah."

It didn't take long for you and Holly to get your tickets and to be seated on the train. Even with it sprinkling lightly outside the scenery was gorgeous. The lush foliage standing as a light contrast to the rain clouds overhead. The scene reminded you of the last time you rode a train to a new and unfamiliar region.

"I'm sure Amble would love to see this."

"Amble?" Holly asked, "Who's Amble?"

It was then that you realized you had spoken your thoughts out loud.

"Well, it's a bit of a long story," you answered, "she's somepony I meet one day when I overslept on a train ride. While I did miss my stop, Amble was able to keep me company for the remainder of the ride."

Holly smiled, "It sounds like she must be a very nice mare."

"Yeah, she is."

After a half hour, you reached your destination. Exiting the train, you passed through Gemstone City, before catching a boat with a few other tourists, which moved out to a large white structure that appeared to have been anchored above the water. As the vessel approached it's destination you noticed that the surrounding water had changed color, turning from its regular crystalline blue to a dark purplish color.

Once the ship docked, Holly and you made your way off the boat and into the structure. The interior showed maps and models of various diamond dog war vessels that had fought long ago.

"This memorial," Holly explained, "was built over the ruins of the Arizonorwich, one of the many vessels that fought against the Storm King when he lay siege to the islands."

There was a map and a model that showed the span of the vessel when it still sailed on the water, as well as the wreckage of what remained. According to one of the displaces on the wall more than two thousand diamond dog sailors and soldiers died when the Arizonorwich was destroyed.

Holly made her way to an outer observation area and you followed. Here the water was a dark, sickly purple with a rainbow sheen on the surface.

"The water here is still contaminated by the amount of gem fuel leaking from the destroyed vessels," Holly explained, "while there are a few trying to figure out how to either gather the fuel or safely disperse it, for now we can merely contain it."

You could recall how gem fuel was made from some research you had made for a previous novel. From what you could gather, magical gems we're melted down into a thick sludge, which could then be processed by a gem engine. While it was an efficient source of energy, it could be a hazardous mess to clean up. Being a magical substance, it was even difficult for magic to contain.

"It's so dark." You said, pointing a hoof to the murky water.

"Yes, the fuel continues to leak from the damaged tanks," Holly explained, "it chokes the life from any fish the swim inside and even if the water was clean enough for the fish, these waters are sacred to our people. The blood of our brothers and sisters were spilled here."

"From what I've seen of this land, it has had it's hardships, however that just makes its beauty that much brighter."

"Can't the same be said for the mainland," Holly asked, "we hear of the various monsters and villains that plague it every now and then."

You pondered what Holly said and smiled.

"I suppose you're right."

Stepping back inside, Holly directed you to the back of the structure where a large, marble wall was erected. Carved into its surface was a series of names. With a paw, Holly pointed at one of the names.

"My great aunt, was stationed here during the conflict." Holly explained.

Stepping closer to the wall, you examined the name, Holly had pointed out. Lily.

After observing the names of the fallen, Holly and you made your way back to the town of Haikuvasz. The journey was peaceful and you enjoyed watching the scenery pass by with the light drizzle.

"So what's the plan when we return back to town?" You asked.

"There might be a restaurant we can go to," Holly answered, "I know this one place that serves great food."

"Just as long as it isn't just fish." You said, remembering the weird dream you had.

Upon leaving the train, you saw the weather outside and donned your hood in preparation for the wet weather. Stepping out of the train station, you were surprised to see an angry looking Jag waiting for Holly and you.

"Holly, we need to talk!" Jag growled.

Taking a deep breath, Holly straightened herself and stepped forward. "What do you want, Jagged?"

First off, it's Jag," Jag growled, "Second, I think it is time you got over it!"

"Over what?"

"Don't play dumb with me," Jag barked, "I have apologized countless times for hitting on your sirefriend! It was an accidental! Why won't you forgive me?"

"That isn't the reason I am upset with you!" Holly yelled.

A crowd began to gather around the three of you, drawn to the commotion that was being made.

The expression on Jag's face became that of confusion, "Then why won't you hang out with me?"

"Do you really not remember?"

"Remember what?"

Pulling up the sleeves of her raincoat, Holly began to unwrap her bandages.

"You don't have to do this." You whispered, knowing how humiliating this must be for her.

"No, I do," Holly answered, "I'm tired of hiding this."

With the scars on her arms revealed, Holly presented them to Jag. "Do you not remember doing this?"

Jag was mortified by the sight of the scars, before shaking her head in disbelief.

"No... No, I couldn't have done that! You're lying!"

Jag made a few steps closer, the slight scent of alcohol becoming apparent as she drew near.

"I'm not lying, Jag!" Holly replied, "We were walking on the beach after the luau. I was talking to you about your drinking, when you went feral and attacked me!"

"Why?" Jag yelled, "Why would I attack you?"

Raising her foreleg to make a gesture, Jag's hoof hit you in your weak spot. Your nose. The pain washed through your skull and a taste of iron touched the back of your tongue.

As blood trickled from your nose, you caught a sight of Jag and for a moment your heart froze. Slowly Jag's lips pulled back revealing rows of sharp teeth, her pupils dilating to massive black disks. Sniffing the air, Jag stepped closer, her jaw opening wide as saliva dripped from her muzzle.

"Jag?"

There was no response, only the gradual approach of death. It was that primal hunger that you had seen in the dream the night before. Those two starving eyes focused completely on you.

It was in that moment, that Holly stepped in front of you, using her body as a shield.

"Jag! Stop!" Holly barked.

Rage filled the shark mare's eyes at the sight of somepony standing between her and her prey. Her posture lowered for a brief moment before Jag pounced forward, pushing Holly to the ground. Jag glared down at the diamond dog beneath her. It was then that the shark pony stopped in her tracks, Jag's eyes returning to normal as her face took on a horrified expression.

Among the crowd was the sound of fear and horror. A few of them fled from the scene, some stood there watching the scene in shock and there was one mare who actually fainted. Jag stepped back off of Holly, a look of dread etched across her face.

"I... I..."

Before you could say anything, Jag ran away, the crowd parting in her wake as she fled. For a moment you just stood there, watching as Holly pulled herself from the ground.

"Are you okay?" You asked.

Holly shook her head, a tear rolling down her cheek.

"I... I don't know."


You felt tired. Physically you were fine, but on an emotional level you felt exhausted. The confrontation between Holly and Jag weighed heavily on you. After the conflict Jag had run off and Holly said she wasn't feeling very hungry, so you decided to just return to your hotel room and jot down some notes.

After taking off the rain coat you decided to end the silence and turn on some music. As you walked over to the table, you turned on the radio only to discover static on Jag's channel.

"Well, that's weird."

You adjusted the antenna on the radio, but had no luck. Changing the channel, most of the other stations seemed to come through with very little static. Could this be caused by the storm?

"What's going on?"

A part of you worried that perhaps this was the result of Jag and Holly's argument at the station. While you were considering this, you heard a knock at the door. Walking over to the door, you looked through the peephole to see an anxious Fleur de Lis fidgeting on the other side. You opened the door.

"Hey Fleur, is everything alright?"

"Is Jag here?" Fleur asked.

"No, she isn't," you answered, "is something wrong?"

Fleur's mood became more distraught.

"Jag was supposed to meet us in town earlier today. However, she never showed up. We went by the docks and her ship is there, however she wasn't. My husband and I have been looking everywhere for her."

"Have you checked any of the bars?"

It made sense that after her fight with Holly, that Jag may have gone off to someplace to drink.

Fleur shook her head, "We've looking at a few of her regular spots, however nopony seems to know where she is."

Now that worried you. From what you had gathered from your time with her, Jag loved the nightclub scene and drinking. So the fact that she had just up and disappeared was greatly disturbing.

'Could this be my fault?'

"If she comes by here, can you try to keep her preoccupied," Fleur asked, "at least until the storm has passed?"

"I will certainly try."

"Thank you." Fleur gave you a note with a phone number on it. "Please call this number if you find her."

As Fleur resumed her search, you closed the door and pondered what could have happened to your new friend. Your brain hurt as you tried to recall what you had learned about the shark pony over the past few days. Sitting down you stared at the shark plushie that Jagged Nibble had bought for you, serving as a memento of your time together.

You thought back to the first time the both of you met in the fish market and the time you had spent with Fancy Pants and Fleur on Jag's boat. It was when you pondering that day, that you remembered something.

'You see that? That is Spotter's Point! It is a nice place to sit and relax if you ever feel like it.'

'Have you been there before?'

'From time to time. It is a place I like to go when I'm feeling upset.'

"Spotter's point!"

Jumping off the bed, you began looking through the souvenirs you had gather over the past few days. Within seconds you found the map you had purchased at the open air marketplace. Setting it out on the table, you unrolled it and proceeded to search for Spotter's Point. A smile stretched across your face as you found it.

"There you are!"

Throwing on your raincoat, you picked up the map with your magic and placed it in one of your pockets. There was no time to waste, if Jag was out there in the storm she could be in serious danger. So against your better judgement, you made your way out into the rain in search of your friend.


The rain was coming down heavy as you made your way up the hill, to the spot you had marked on the map. Your journey had been a wet and muddy one, with only a few signs serving as your aid to your destination.

"This was a really stupid idea."

There was no guarantee that Jag would be here. In fact, it was very possible that Jag could have already made her way back to her boat or some other place for shelter. All you had to go on was this hunch and it could very likely result in your demise.

As you drew closer to the top a sound caught your attention. It was barely audible over the wind and the rain, however you were sure you heard it. It sounded like somepony was laughing... or crying. Perhaps both. With your resolution restored you started moving toward the noise.

Soon the view of the shrubbery and trees gave way to a small outcropping overlooking the ocean. There was a small rock positioned as a seat to look out over the waves and on the sat a lonely figure. The shark like tail reaffirming who it might be. The closer you got the more audible that sound became.

"Jag are you okay?"

Turning to face, you was an upset looking Jag, an unopened bottle resting between her forehooves. Her cheeks were wet, though whither it was because she was crying or because of the rain, you couldn't tell.

"Hey, there," Jag called out, a sorrowful laughter in her tone, "did you come out here to see the monster?"

Monster? Even with all you had witnessed earlier today, you wouldn't call her a monster. When you were younger, you could recall reading about how sharks are enticed by the scent of blood. In the ocean, blood means death and for the shark it is their duty in nature to follow that smell and bring that struggling creature to its end. Even while she was part pony, Jag was also part shark and in a moment of weakness she had given into her base instincts.

"Uh, no?"

Jag sniffled, "Oh, there is no need to lie. I already know I'm a failure. I already know that I can't do anything right."

Looking around the scene, you managed to noticed that there were a few other empty bottles lying about next to Jag on the rock.

"That's not true."

"Oh, yes it is!" Jag retorted, "Three of us showed up on the beach. Two females and one male and he picked her over me! Then I start making friends here on the island and I have to buck that up too. I couldn't even remember what I did. Not until today, not until I nearly repeated it!"

Jag looked down at the bottle almost as if pondering whether or not she should pop off the cork and drink it's contents.

"But you didn't," you replied, "you stopped yourself."

"Only because Holly got in my way!"

After giving the bottle another look, Jag stood up from the rock and walked over to the edge of the outcropping. The bottle still clutched between her hooves. Your heart froze in your chest.

"Sometimes I wonder if everypony would be better off if I was gone. Maybe if I just returned to the sea then everypony would be happy."

"Don't say that!" You moved closer to your friend. "There are plenty who would miss you if you were gone!"

"Really! Name one!"

You pondered what Jag was saying, before answering.

"Well, there is Fleur and to some extent her husband, Fancy Pants! They were searching for you in town!"

Jag continued to look over the edge.

"And while I know she is upset, I am sure Holly would miss you too!"

Jag sniffled. You felt a lump in your throat as your next answer came to mind.

"And I... I would miss you too, Jag!"

Turning her head, Jag gave you a confused look, "What?"

"Both you and Holly have shown me the beauty of these islands," you replied, "two separate viewpoints of the same location. You can't just disappear! If you did... then our time together would lose all its joy."

You reached out a hoof, motioning for Jag to come away from the edge.

"Please, stay... for me at least."

Jag eyed your hoof, her expression gradually changing from uncertainty to soft whimpering. Lip trembling, Jag spun around and with a terrible cry, she flung the bottle over the cliff into the sea.

Slowly Jag walked over, her tears becoming more apparent despite the rain. Without saying a word, Jag embraced you and started crying into your shoulder. Sharing the embrace, you patted Jag on the back. Soon Jag's sobbing slowed and her body went limp.

"I'm so... Tired." Jag said sounding very sleepy.

Placing her foreleg over your shoulder, you began to walk Jag back to your hotel.


With some difficulty you managed to escort Jag to your room. It didn't help that she had fallen asleep most of the way there or that her tail was so large. For as slim as she appeared, Jag was quite heavy. You grunted as you hoisted Jag onto the bed.

As Jag lay asleep on the bed, you took the opportunity to catch your breath, your lungs and muscles sore from the whole venture.

"Well, now that you're safe, I should probably try to call Fleur to keep her informed."

Jag didn't react, instead just snoring away in her slumber. Not that you had expected any other response.

Walking over to the phone, you dialed Fleur's number. The phone rang twice before Fleur picked up.

"Hello?"

"Hey Fleur," you answered, "I found Jag."

"Is she okay?"

"She's a little drunk and emotionally exhausted. I currently have her back at my place."

"Stay there. According to the news, the storm is pretty bad and won't go away until later."

Having already been out in the nightmare of a storm, you knew it was bad and had no intention of returning to those conditions.

"Don't worry. We aren't going anywhere."

"Alright, thank you for finding her," Fleur said, "I'll come by tomorrow and check on both of you."

"Okay, thank you."

After hanging up the phone, you considered what to do. Jag looked very peaceful sleeping on the bed.

While it was tempting to try to go to sleep in your bed, you were pretty sure that Jag wouldn't appreciate it. You already two dreams with Jag biting you and you had no intention of making that a reality.

Instead you walked over and picked up the edge of the bed sheet, lifting it over Jag's slender form as you tucked her into bed. As you did Jag stirred.

"No..."

You stopped, worried that you had disturbed Jag's slumber.

"White... Rooms..."

Something about the way Jag said those words made you feel uneasy.

Having covered Jag, you walked over to the table and sat down in the chair. You would think that it should be easy to fall asleep like this, considering how you could just fall asleep while writing at your desk back home.

Setting your head down on the table, you closed your eyes and tried to sleep. The sound of the rain splattering against the window gradually lulling you into a deep sleep.