• Published 13th Oct 2019
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The Life and Times of Everypony - Leafdoggy



A collection of short stories set in the same ever-evolving world.

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A Day For Marble (Marble Pie)

Marble Pie was a quiet pony. Shy, perhaps. Reserved, probably. Meek, certainly. But above all else, she was quiet. Her silence didn’t grow from some great injustice, it wasn’t brought on through anxiety or fear. She just wasn’t often inclined to talk.

It wasn’t even that she disliked talking. When she felt the urge to, she was more than willing to make her thoughts known. Sure, if she didn’t know somepony well, her shyness would often leave her with less to say, but anypony close to her would hear her voice from time to time. She spoke to her sisters most of all, and none more than Limestone. The two had been inseparable since they were young.

This closeness was why Limestone was right beside her when Marble got off the train in Ponyville. She was lugging a heavy suitcase, which she dropped in front of Marble with a heavy thud.

“You sure you don’t want this stuff?” Limestone asked. “One saddlebag isn’t all that much for a whole weekend.”

Marble glanced at the bags strapped to her back, then nodded to her sister with a smile. “Mm-hm.”

Limestone sighed. “Alright, well, don’t say I didn’t try.” She glanced around to make sure nopony was watching, then gave her sister a quick hug. “I’ll come get you at Pinkie’s on Monday.”

Marble shook her head. “I can ride the train alone, Limestone.”

“I mean, I know that,” Limestone said. “That doesn’t mean you have to, though.”

Marble rolled her eyes.

“Alright, fine,” Limestone relented. “If you change your mind, just make Pinkie go with you.”

Marble nodded. “Love you, sis.”

Limestone coughed and lowered her voice. “I love you, too, Marble. See ya in a few days.”

Limestone got to work lugging the heavy suitcase back onto the train, and just like that Marble was alone in Ponyville. She walked out into the street, ponies bustling past her, and took a deep breath. Then she let it out in a slow, contented sigh, and smiled at the sky above.

Sugarcube Corner was only a short walk away, but Marble set off in another direction. She wandered the back streets of Ponyville, nodded politely at any ponies that passed her by, and took in the sights. She enjoyed seeing the little ways Ponyville would change between her visits. Maybe there would be a new flower bed in front of a house, or a shop would have taken down a help wanted sign, or a pony would be home when before he would have been at work. All the tiny details with stories of their own, evidence of lives being lived.

Marble found a strange sort of joy in the things she couldn’t know. On the farm, everypony knew everything about each other. Sure, things may change, but they wouldn’t stay mysteries. If, say, Limestone decided one day to get her ears pierced, there would be no reason to wonder at why. She could just ask. In Ponyville, though, with these strangers living strange lives, Marble would never know why they did the things they did, and that delighted her.

So, she did as she always did when she visited Pinkie, and spent some time wandering Ponyville on her own and taking things in. It had become sort of a private routine for her. She told Limestone that she liked to surprise Pinkie, and that was true, so they rarely warned her that Marble was coming to visit. That meant, though, that she got a rare opportunity. With Limestone under the assumption that she was with Pinkie, and Pinkie having no reason to expect her to be there, the time between arriving and meeting her sister belonged purely to Marble.

There was something special about these moments. Sure she could head off to spend some time alone on the farm, and she often did, but her family always knew where to find her. The time was relaxing, yes, but it wasn’t hers. Not completely. This time was, though, and she always made the most of it.

She finished her walk at the town hall. It was always interesting to see what excuse Mayor Mare had found to decorate it. Apparently today was the half-anniversary of the town’s founding, and Mayor Mare had decided to celebrate by just putting up half of the decorations for the actual anniversary. It gave the building an oddly bare look, even more so than it would have seemed if it hadn’t been decorated at all.

Marble looked out over the town square as she pondered what to do next. She could go see Pinkie at any time, but she didn’t want to end her alone time quite yet. After all, there was so much to do in Ponyville. Instead, she decided, she would go to the market. Who knows, she might even find a gift for Pinkie.

The indecipherable din of chattering ponies greeted Marble as she walked into Ponyville’s marketplace. There were ponies everywhere, but she was happy to see that it wasn’t too busy. She had no trouble walking around, looking at stalls from a distance to see what they were carrying. Most ponies were selling things like food and other necessities, all things Marble didn’t give a second thought to, but plenty of others caught her interest.

The first shop that enticed her in was the flower stand, always a popular place. She had to wait in line for a minute, but she didn’t mind. It was a good opportunity to take a moment of respite, breathing deeply and recentering herself. Before she knew it, she was at the front of the line.

Daisy was running the stand today, and waved her up excitedly. “Well, hey!” She grinned wide at Marble. “I’ve seen you around before. You’re, uh, Pinkie’s sister, yeah?”

“Mm-hm,” Marble said with a nod.

“Right, the quiet one,” Daisy said. “Nice to see you in town! What can I get ya?”

Marble put a hoof to her chin and thought for a moment. “Hmm,” she hummed. “I think I just want one to put in my mane.”

“Well, that’s easy enough,” Daisy said. “Got a color in mind?”

“Pink?”

Daisy giggled. “Not a problem.” She took a quick glance over the flowers, then picked out a subdued pink flower and put it in Marble’s mane for her, right above the ear. “It’s adorable.”

Marble grinned and grabbed a bit from her bags. “Thank you,” she said as she handed it over.

“Oh, you don’t have to pay me for a single flower,” Daisy told her.

Marble shook her head and held out the bit insistently.

“Well, if you’re sure,” Daisy said, and she took the payment with a kind smile. “Tips are always appreciated. You have a wonderful time in Ponyville, now, dear.”

Marble nodded and trotted away, a smile stuck on her face as she continued down the row of stalls.

She still had her sights set on a gift for Pinkie Pie, but it didn’t come to her as naturally as it did to Maud. She knew that no matter what she got, Pinkie would see it as the greatest gift ever given, but she had to find something she’d be happy to give, and that wasn’t easy to figure out.

She passed up candy and balloons, anything that would be gone before too long. She couldn’t imagine finding any knick-knacks or antiques that would fit the bill. She considered clothes, but it was hard for her to feel like she could compete with Rarity.

Then she saw a jewelry stand, and before she knew it she was standing before it. The colorful gems and shining metals drew her in effortlessly. It seemed like a perfect place to get a gift, too. After all, the Pie family always did have an eye for rocks.

When she met eyes with the pony running the stand, she was shocked to find that it was Roseluck, a pony she’d always seen running the flower stand. Her shock didn’t last long, though, and she smiled politely to greet her.

Roseluck laughed. “Shocked to see me here?”

Marble laughed under her breath and nodded.

“Yeah, the three of us rotate through a bunch of different stores throughout the week,” Roseluck said. “I guess we must be decent at selling stuff, cuz ponies who aren’t good at it get us to run stalls for them a lot. That’s how we picked up this one. Maud finds a lot of gems in her research.”

Marble smiled and nodded. “Mm-hm.”

“So how can I help?”

Marble took a glance over the various necklaces and bracelets. “I’d like a gift for Pinkie,” she explained.

“Ahh,” Roseluck said. “She’s tough to find the best option for.”

“Mm-hm.”

“We have some darker gems over here,” she said, pointing over to one side of the collection. “Maybe one of those would, like, remind her of you all.”

“Hmm…” Marble thought it over for a second, taking a long, hard look at all the different pieces. Then, she nodded confidently and pointed to a simple silver necklace affixed to a piece of onyx.

“Great choice,” Roseluck said. “She’ll love it. And, lucky for you, not a lot of ponies get the dark colors, so that one only costs five bits.”

Marble grinned and slipped the necklace into her bag, then pulled out a small pile of coins and passed them over. Then she looked back down at the jewelry and hummed again.

“Interested in something else?” Roseluck asked.

“Maybe…” She pointed to a silver bracelet lined with tiny cyan gems. “Could I try this on?”

“Absolutely,” Roseluck said.

Marble slipped the band on, then held out her leg to examine it. It fit her nicely, and the bright gems popped out against her gray coat, glittering in the sunlight.

“Oh, that is just lovely,” came a voice from beside Marble. She looked up to find Rarity, walking towards her and waving. “I’m relieved to see that at least one of you Pie sisters has some semblance of a fashion sense.”

Marble grinned and waved back. “Hello, Rarity,” she said. “Thank you.”

“Are you going to get it?” Rarity asked. “I think that it would go fantastically with a light scarf.”

Marble looked down at the bracelet again, then nodded and looked over at Roseluck.

“That one’s six bits,” Roseluck told her.

Marble pulled out a pile of ten bits and gave it to her. “Thank you very much.”

“Thank you,” Roseluck said. “Marble, you are quickly on your way to becoming my favorite Pie.”

Marble blushed lightly and waved as she walked away, Rarity following closely behind her.

“So where is Pinkie Pie?” Rarity asked.

“I haven’t told her I’m here yet,” Marble said.

“Ooh, looking to surprise her? How fun! If you’d like, I could help you plan an outfit for the occasion!”

“Um, actually,” Marble said, “I was getting some time to myself before I go see her.”

“Oh! Oh, of course, darling,” Rarity said. “I’m terribly sorry, I didn’t mean to intrude.”

“It’s okay,” Marble said, and she flashed Rarity a smile.

“I should probably be off anyway,” Rarity said. “Otherwise I’ll be late for the Wonderbolts show.”

Marble stopped walking and looked at her. “Show?”

“Oh, yes, they’re performing quite soon. Pinkie knows where, if you’d like to go with her!”

“Um,” Marble said, “do you think…” Her voice trailed off.

Rarity chuckled. “You want to see it alone, huh? I understand. You’re probably with Pinkie for most events you go see, and being with her makes for a very different experience.”

“Mm-hm,” Marble agreed.

“Come, darling, I’ll show you the way,” Rarity said. “You can join me in the ‘friends and family’ seating! It’s much quieter.”

Marble smiled, and let Rarity begin to lead her through town.

Ponyville was a small town, relatively speaking. It was a good town, a place anypony would be happy in, but it was still small. It didn’t have many of the amenities larger communities had, no bounty of restaurants or slew of stores, and it certainly didn’t have a stadium. When it came to the Wonderbolts, though, most of them saw this as a good thing. A town without a stadium was a rare opportunity for them to go off script, to set up wherever they want and do whatever they want, and they relished it.

This time, they had decided to set up just outside of town, beside the windmill. Sets of bleachers, which the team had hastily constructed that morning, sat on either side of the wide tower. Ponies crammed together, talking and laughing as they waited for the show to start. Just in front of the windmill, a few comfy chairs were set up for any friends or family of the flyers.

The area was empty when Rarity led Marble to a seat. “I’m afraid it’ll likely just be you and I today, dear,” Rarity said. “Scheduling things together has just been a nightmare this week. Even Scootaloo was busy, can you believe it?”

“Mm-hm,” Marble hummed as she took a seat. She sat a few chairs down from Rarity, not wanting to be too crowded during the show.

“Oh, look at me, prattling on,” Rarity said with a haughty chuckle. “I’ll leave you to your peace until after the show.”

Marble smiled to herself and gazed up at the clouds as she waited. The sun gave them a glorious golden hue, perfect against the clear blue sky. The Wonderbolts had probably put a lot of work into making that vista just right.

The show started with a bang. A literal one, as a sonic boom roared out over the audience to announce the arrival of the team. They flew in from behind the windmill, trails of light and smoke painting the sky as they made their introduction.

The show never gave the viewers a moment to rest. The ponies flew at breathtaking speeds, skirting along the ground before rocketing to the sky, then looping back down to fly over the audience again. The gusts of wind as they flew overhead sent manes flapping and hats soaring, and each one brought out a roar of cheering.

They continued like this, flowing from one routine to the next without missing a beat. During one particularly close fly-by, Rainbow Dash blew a kiss to Rarity, bringing out another wave of applause.

Marble’s eyes glittered as she watched the show. She loved the spectacle, and getting to devote her full attention to it was indeed a special experience. The way the wind frazzled her mane, and the booms made her ears ring, it all just made her smile wider.

Then it came time for the finale. The Wonderbolts all formed a line, looking dangerously close to each other, and zipped through the sky in loops. First one loop, then another, and on and on, building up speed each time.

Just when it seemed like they couldn’t possibly get any faster, the loops ended. They carried all their speed into one final descent, and with it blasted past the windmill, sending the blades spinning. Confetti sprayed out from the blades, showering the audience as the Wonderbolts landed gracefully before them and took a bow.

The audience exploded into a cacophony of noise. Stomping, clapping, cheering and hollering, the noise was overwhelming. Even Marble found herself clapping softly, although she stopped soon after. The rest of the audience kept up their applause much longer, though, and they didn’t even begin to calm down until after the Wonderbolts had disbanded and flown off in various directions.

Rarity tapped Marble on the shoulder, and pointed to a tree on the far side of the field. “I’m going to go over there to escape the noise and say hello to Rainbow, would you like to tag along?”

Marble thought for a moment, then shrugged and nodded, getting up to follow Rarity.

It was much quieter away from the crowds, and Marble breathed a sigh of relief. She had fun, but being a part of that much energy exhausted her, and she was glad to be away from it.

After a few minutes, Rainbow Dash landed beside them and flipped up her goggles with a smirk.
“Hey, guys,” she said. “Enjoy the show?”

Rarity gave Rainbow Dash a quick kiss on the cheek. “It was marvelous, dearest.”

Rainbow Dash laughed and scratched the back of her neck. “Aw, it was nothin. What about you, Marble? Were you into it?”

Marble smiled wide and nodded with an affirmative “mm-hm.”

“Glad to hear it,” Rainbow Dash said. “Glad to see ya, too! Where’s Pinkie?”

“Oh, Marble wanted some alone time before diving into all that,” Rarity explained. “You understand, right? Why, even I would need to prepare myself to spend an entire weekend at Pinkie’s.”

“It isn’t that bad,” Marble said. “This was just me doing something special for myself.”

There was a thump as another pony landed next to Rainbow Dash. With a mischievous grin, Spitfire pushed up her goggles and trotted up to the group.

“Well, shoot, Dash,” Spitfire said, “did you go and get yourself another girlfriend?”

Rainbow Dash laughed. “Nah, this is Pinkie’s sister, Marble.” Marble smiled and waved hello.

“Aw, heck, there’s more of ‘em?” Spitfire asked. “I can’t handle the one.”

“Oh, she isn’t like Pinkie,” Rarity said. “Not in the overwhelming sense, at least.”

“Well, I guess she at least hasn’t tried to hug me yet,” Spitfire said. She looked Marble over more closely, then smirked at her. “Nice to meet ya, little lady. The name’s Spitfire. I run this joint.”

Marble smiled and nodded at her, but at the same time instinctively brushed her mane in front of her face some more.

Spitfire barked out a laugh. “Now that’s just adorable. I like this one.” She turned and hit Rainbow Dash in the shoulder. “Hey, Dash, bring her to setup next time we’re in Ponyville, yeah? Then we’ll actually have time to talk.” With that, she flew off.

Marble was trying very hard to hide her red face behind her mane, and was failing spectacularly.

“Well, that was peculiar,” Rarity said. “She’s never invited me to setup.”

Rainbow Dash rolled her eyes. “Yeah, what a mystery.” She walked over and patted Marble on the back. “I’ll send you our schedule. Since you don’t actually live in Ponyville, you can just pick a show you wanna come to, and I’ll come pick you up. Sound cool?”

“U-Um,” Marble muttered, “I—”

“Just a yes or no is enough,” Rainbow Dash said.

“I…” Marble looked at the ground for a moment, then she swallowed hard and looked back up. “Mm-hm.”

“Awesome,” Rainbow Dash said, and patted her again. “I’ll see ya then. I oughta be off, though. Got a lotta autographs to sign.” She trotted over to Rarity and gave her a kiss, then flew off after Spitfire.

“Are you alright, darling?” Rarity asked Marble.

Marble nodded slowly.

“I take it you’re not very accustomed to flirting,” Rarity said.

Marble shook her head.

“Well, we all start somewhere,” Rarity said. “Give her a shot. I don’t think you’ll regret it.”

Marble nodded again. “Thank you.”

“It’s not a problem at all, my dear,” Rarity said. “Now, I should be getting back to my boutique. I closed it to come to the show, and orders are probably piling up as we speak. Ta-ta!” She waved and trotted off jovially.

Marble took a second to stare at the ground and try to recenter herself. She rubbed her burning cheek, thinking everything over, and took several deep breaths. Slowly, gradually, her blush drained away, and eventually she felt up to walking back to Ponyville.

She decided it was finally time to go see Pinkie. The day had been fun, and she was glad to have taken the time for herself, but she wanted to see her sister, too. So, she walked to Sugarcube Corner, smiling to herself the entire way.

A bell above the door jingled as Marble walked inside. “I’ll be right there!” Pinkie shouted from the kitchen, and Marble took the time to take in the room. Apparently Pinkie had seen the town hall, because the store was decorated in the exact same way, but the smell of fresh cookies wafting in from the kitchen made it feel a lot more cohesive.

Pinkie whistled as she bounced back out to the lobby, her eyes closed and a grin on her face. “What can I get—” She froze when she opened her eyes and saw who it was. “Marble!”

A second later, Marble was flying through the air, tackled off her hooves by Pinkie. Then they tumbled across the floor as Pinkie squeezed the breath out of her, skidding to a stop just short of the door.

“Oh, this is the best surprise ever!” Pinkie cheered. Marble took a deep breath when she was freed from the hug. “What are you doin here? Where’s Limestone? What’s with the bracelet?”

Marble fixed her tussled mane and smiled softly. “Hi, Pinkie.”

“Hi, Marble!” Pinkie squeezed her sister excitedly, then hopped up and started bouncing in place. “How long are you in town for?”

“The weekend,” Marble said as she pushed herself back to her hooves.

“Awesome! We’re gonna be able to do so much stuff! Oh, it’s a shame you didn’t get here sooner, we could’ve seen the Wonderbolts.”

Marble looked away bashfully. “I actually, um, went to see them alone.”

“Oh, yay!” Pinkie said. “You didn’t miss them! I hope you had fun.”

“Mm-hm,” Marble replied. “Oh, here.” She fished around in her bag for a second before pulling out the necklace and handing it out to Pinkie with a hopeful smile.

Pinkie gasped. “Wow, it’s incredible!” She slipped the necklace on without hesitation. “Marble, you’re the best.” She pulled Marble into another tight hug, which Marble graciously returned.

Then Pinkie led Marble up to her bedroom, rambling the entire way. Asking about the farm, pondering what they would do together, anything that came to her mind. Marble hardly answered any of her questions, and Pinkie hardly waited for any answers. Pinkie never actually expected Marble to answer her barrage of questions. She just wanted to give Marble the opportunity.

Marble smiled to herself as she followed her sister. She could tell this was going to be a wonderful weekend.

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