• Published 6th May 2019
  • 297 Views, 25 Comments

Cafe Harmony - River Shy

A woman in Equestria, a small town, a mare-friend. They go to the famous Cafe Harmony where magic compels you to share your song.

  • ...

Do you really know me

Silence echoed over the dinner table. Strawberry watched with a smile as Katie struggled to hold the utensil in her pyjama covered hooves. She could hold the object but the girl was constantly readjusting trying to get a better grip. It made dinner a slow affair.

The mare wondered, not for the first time, what was going though that little mind. As it turns out blushing was common in her species and for the same reason as ponies. Katie was very red she would not look up at Strawberry at all, the girl looked so embarrassed it made the pink pony’s heart ache. Strawberry finished eating and decided to break the silence.

“A bit for your thoughts?”

The girl put her utensil down still staring at the table. “You dressed me,” it was a whisper spoken into the dinner plate.

“I did.”

“I’m not a child, or a foal.”

“I know.” Strawberry answered delicately.

“I don’t know what came over me, I couldn’t stop crying.” The girls head shook in disapproval, still focused on the table deep in thought.

“I could tell.”

“I’m sorry.”

Strawberry having spent significant time with the girl began to notice a pattern. Katie apologized for everything, she apologized for feeling, for showing interest in things, for talking with enthusiasm. “It's ok, nothing to be sorry for, you were upset.”

“Strawberry the whole town knows my memories. I can’t stay here,” Katie looked up at the mare, there was clear anguish on her face. “But I have nowhere else to go.”

“Woah, woah, slow that galloping mind down.” Strawberry answered, she was starting to understand the girl’s sudden attempt to leave. “First of all, only the ponies in the cafe saw things, and secondly it was impressions not whole memories. Here let me show you something.” Strawberry left the kitchen and came back with Katie’s landscape drawing in her mouth, she put it down so the drawing was visible to the girl. “Is this a memory?” Strawberry asked, tilting her head.


“Really to me it’s a picture. A nice picture, but not a memory. To you it has relevance, meaning, and history because you lived it. The ponies in the cafe they don’t have your memories, they don’t know everything about you. What they have are pictures, feeling pictures, and visual pictures, no relevance or connection cause they haven't lived it you understand?”

“You said they were suspicious and upset at me though.”

“I said they were upset and suspicious of what they experienced, not of you. Big difference sweet tart.”

“Oh.” Katie seemed to think a while, “Ponies are a pretty trusting lot aren’t they?” She added, her head was resting on heart decorated pyjamas looking right at Strawberry, staring at her as if she could answer for all her kind.

“You think so?” Strawberry asked dodging the question wanting to hear the girl’s thoughts.

Katie smiled a predatory smile and laughed. Strawberry saw this look from time to time, it flittered in and out. The mare wondered if all humans had that look built into them. “I know so, if roles were reversed and I was an alien on my own world...” Katie replied, shaking her head sadly.

“You know I don’t think running all over Equestria is a good idea. In fact I would like it if you’d stay here a while. I’m worried about what I just saw in the living room," Strawberry said abruptly changing topics, the mare figured that this was the right time to ask.

Katie turned red, she was still very embarrassed, “I don’t know.. you’ve already helped me so much I don’t want to impose.”

“I’m asking you to stay here. ” The mare replied with a bit of irritation,“ if it was an imposition I wouldn’t be asking.”

“Ummm.... as long as it’s ok with you, I kind of want to stay, that house out at the end of town is scary at night.” Katie replied, thinking of that cold dark house and all the nights she spent alone there.

Strawberry silently cheered inside, she began cleaning up dinner starting with Katie’s plate.

“Let me help,” the little human said trying to get off the chair.

“No it’s fine.” Strawberry responded she had images of the girl dropping plates in her pyjama’d hooves. “Why don’t you tell me about your drawing, make that picture a memory for me, do you like mountains?”

My grandmother had a house, an old one which sat right in the middle of the mountains. She lived alone for as long as I can remember and several times a year my family would visit her there.

She had oil paintings of mountains all over her walls, she painted them, it’s how she passed the time. Sitting in her painting room she would grid a picture of the mountains, copy it to the canvas, frame it, than hang it. I always thought it a bit funny she lived in the middle of a mountain range, but she’d choose to copy pictures from calendars.

Behind the house was a railroad track. A really old one no longer in service, you’d walk out the back yard and there it was. We would walk the track for three minutes or so and be in forest. Not like the forest here Strawberry, I’m talking old growth forest. A kind of forest that if you went two hundred paces in any direction you could get lost.

I remember walking with my father and looking off the path, it would drop off and light would just disappear. I’d think of all the things that would jump out to get you. We’d follow the path and it’d open to a river fast and muddy green. An old railway bridge spanned it. We’d cross it every time, I hated and loved crossing that bridge. Around me mountains towering in all directions, below me a river. The wood slates were far apart, so far it felt like I could slide right through, there was no railing or anything. I remember looking down seeing the rushing green water and rocks. Carefully I would step on the separated wood. He wasn’t afraid, so I couldn’t be either.

I remember my brother and I going into that forest for a whole day. We’d built little houses out of moss found on the trees. That forest got less scary as I grew, I learned my grandfather’s ashes were scattered at that bridge, my grandmother’s too when she eventually passed, my aunt is scattered around a tree next to it, I was there when they did that. I guess you could say mountains are in my family, or my family are in the mountains. I suppose I’ll never see that forest, or those mountains again.

Katie got off the chair after everything was cleaned and put away. She tried to stand to her full height only to find herself sprawled out on the floor. The pyjamas being built for pony bodies pushed her forward in the back. The fabric had stretch, the girl could walk but it took a lot of energy. Being unprepared for this fact meant the poor human was laying on the floor looking up at the roof.

“You ok?” Strawberry asked with concern.

“Yeah I’m fine, these are just temporary right?" she pulled at the garment," I mean it’s better than being naked but I feel like a toddler.” Katie added, not moving off the floor.

“A what?”

“You know, a toddler. A little human who is just learning to walk. They toddle along.”

"What they make smaller humans! I didn't think you could get any tinier," Strawberry joked.

"Ha, ha, very funny," Katie replied dryly.

Strawberry chuckled. “Do you want help?” The mare asked standing by the human looking down at her from what seemed to be miles away.

“No I’m good” Katie rolled into a position in which the clothing felt most comfortable. On her hands and knees she slowly began to stand. She took three steps and started to tip forward, she put her arms up preparing for the fall, suddenly her forward momentum ceased.

“Gotcha!” came Strawberry’s muffled voice though the handle on the back. Katie’s being at an angle her feet had no grip and suddenly slipped out from under.

“Ahhh!” The girl exclaimed, almost having her dinner make a second appearance, as the fabric went taught.

“Relax I gotcha,” came Strawberry’s muffled voice. “Quite shifting around please or I’m going to drop you.”

Katie hung limply by the handle in Strawberry’s mouth, her back legs tucked up to balance the weight.

“Strawberry can you put me down please?” Katie asked, half heartedly.

“Welcome aboard the pink pony express line, it goes straight to you room sorry no stops.” The mare mumbled and trotted with the girl swaying by the handle in front of her.

Katie smiled to herself it was a really novel experience. Everything looked so different as Strawberry moved though the house. She was really enjoying the ride but was to embarrassed to admit it.

In what seemed like a blink they were standing in a guest room. It was a tiny room with an enormous bed close to the ground. The house the town had lent to Katie had no bed, so just seeing it made her dream of curling up under covers.

“You ready?” Strawberry asked.

“Ready for what?” Katie replied.

Suddenly the swaying motion increased. The mare swaying her head back and forth as if she was going to toss the little human.

Katie’s stomach lurched. “Strawberry don’t you dare,” her voice was high and tight with fear.

“One.......Two” each time it corresponded with the highest point of the swing, “Three!” The mare let go and tossed the little human up aiming for the mattress.

Katie screamed in genuine fear, her whole world was tumbling, suddenly she saw the mattress and tried to adjust her body for the fall.

The mattress took her fall easily, landing in the centre. Katie caught her breath, heart hammering in her chest she laughed loudly, in between chuckles she couldn’t help exclaiming. “That was fun! Can we do it again?”

Strawberry smiled enjoying the little human's delight, shaking her head she replied, “Nope, sorry sweet tart the pink pony express is only once a night.”

Author's Note:

I enjoyed writing this, it made me happy. I'm not really sure where this is going, or how far along Katie will move towards foal-hood. I'm just kind of going with the flow at the moment.

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