• Published 30th Apr 2020
  • 3,243 Views, 54 Comments

Does she know— - semillon

Love is built up over time, and no one knows that more than Ocellus.

  • ...

that she drives me crazy?

I’m doing it. I’m skipping class.

Why? Because about a week ago, I figured out that I’m head over hooves in love with Smolder the Dragon (apparently that’s her legal surname). Many creatures might react to a realization like that with shock. They might need some time to process their feelings, to make sure that what they think is happening is real and true. The great thing about being a changeling is that I don’t.

I know true love. I’d know it anywhere and I know it especially when it’s coming from me, and this is the real thing and there’s nothing in the entire world that could be more exciting.

I find myself watching her in class often. I still pay attention to the lectures, of course, but I can’t help but look at her sometimes. The way that her mouth scrunches up before she tells a joke or says something snarky makes me feel like I’m in the middle of an earthquake, and the only thing in my vision that doesn’t make me sick, and the only thing that’s stable to look at, is her. It’s funny when you read that kind of thing in a romance novel. It sounds ridiculous to say out loud. But I’ve discovered that love is ridiculous. It turns everything about someone into a completely absurd, totally beautiful thing.

And it’s scary, because I don’t know if she feels the same way. Something that I’ve discovered about non-changelings is that the only emotion they’re truly good at hiding is love. I truly understand the reason why infiltration was such a valued aspect of the old hive. It’s not just the winning of love that’s difficult, but the detection and maintenance of it as well. Part of me thinks she simply doesn’t like me like that, but then she’ll offer to help carry my books, or smile at me or brush me with her tail when no one else is looking, and I have to wonder. Well, I’m tired of wondering.

I’m skipping class today to buy something that I need for a late-night picnic. One might ask: why would I need to skip class when classes end early enough in the afternoon that I could still go out and feasibly buy anything I wanted from the market before everything closed?

It’s because Professor Applejack still works the Sweet Apple Acres stall after classes end, and she’s specifically forbidden us from buying alcohol from her.

Big Macintosh raises an eyebrow when I hover down from the sky to the front of his stall.

“Hi!” I say.

He nods. I’ve always liked Big Mac. He’s very calming for me to be around. He most likely doesn’t do it on purpose, but he communicates very clearly with his emotions.

Right now, he’s happy, but also a little confused. He’s probably wondering what I’m doing outside of class.

“Can you not tell your sister about this?” I ask, laying a bag of 200 bits on the table. The only thing that’s worth exactly 200 bits is the thing that I came here to buy.

His mouth scrunches up. He looks from the money, to me, and back to the money again. His emotions flare: even more confusion emanates from him, though it’s mostly directed at himself. I taste sour figs.

“I’m of legal age, Big Mac, and I really need this. It’s for something special,” I explain. “Something for a friend.”

Big Macintosh sighs, and he backs up to look through his stock, keeping me waiting as the market rages around me. I turn and take it all in. There are so many ponies here. So much excitement, boredom and the occasional wave of anger from those getting too into their bartering. Once, I would have been overwhelmed by all the emotion, but I’m a little more used to it now. Actually, I really like it.

The clinking of glass on wood makes me turn back around. Big Macintosh smiles at me.

“Enjoy your night,” he says.

I admire the swirling colors of the rainbow in the bottle he pushes towards me. They’re so beautiful that for a moment I consider keeping this for another time and buying something more normal for tonight, but then I remember that tonight is supposed to be so much more than normal. A bottle of zap apple cider is the only beverage that could fit.

“Thank you, Mac.” I take the bottle and smile back at him. “I think I will.”


Sandbar is the first to ask: “Why did you call us here?”

I’m sitting on the top bunk of my bed, looking down on him, Gallus, Yona and Silverstream as they sit in a semi circle on my dorm floor. This is probably what Princess Celestia feels like, doesn’t it? They’re all looking to me for answers, inspired by my radiant beauty—

“Are you pretending to be Princess Celestia again?” Silverstream asks.

I sigh.

“Where’s Smolder?” Gallus asks. “Any of you seen her? It’s not like her to be—” He shakes his head. “It’s not like her to be this late.”

“She won’t be coming,” I say.

“Dragon sick?” Yona asks.

“I just saw her in class,” says Sandbar, who then looks to me. “And I didn’t see you.”

“Whoah,” Silverstream gasps. “Ocellus? Skipping class without us? Did you join a gang like I said you should?”

“Why did you tell her to join a gang?” Gallus asks her.

“Because that way she can turn them around from the inside and gain a whole bunch of friends with useful skills!”

Gallus considers the proposition, then shrugs. “Not the worst thing I’ve ever heard.”

“I didn’t invite her,” I say, speaking a little louder than everyone else. Weirdly enough, that shuts them up. Just like with Big Mac, I taste confusion. A bit of worry. If I had to guess, they’re wondering if me and her had another fight. I smile at them to try and quell that notion. “I didn’t invite her because this is about her.”

“Is she stealing stuff again?” Sandbar asks.

I shake my head.

“Dragon need help studying for finals?”

I shake my head again.

“Then…” Gallus prompts me, spreading a wing towards me as a gesture to go on.

“I’m asking her out,” I announce, trying to keep myself from quivering. Suddenly it’s really hard to sit still. Suddenly I’m wondering if this wasn’t a good idea. “And I wanted your help in preparing a special picnic for her that I’m planning and now I’m kind of worried that you guys aren’t going to approve judging by the looks on your faces.”

Wide-eyed, jaws slightly opened. Surprised at the least. Flabbergasted at the worst.

Maybe they know something that I don’t. Smolder doesn’t even like me like that, does she? She doesn’t even like me period. I bet she rants to the others about how annoying I am when I’m not around. She definitely, without a doubt, hates me guts, doesn’t she? I knew it. This was an awful, terrible idea and I never should have had it.

Gallus snaps out of his daze first, then looks to the others. “Guys, stop being surprised. I think we’re freaking her out.”

“That’s so exciting ohmigosh—” Silverstream leaps from the floor up to my top bunk without even using her legs, and ends up hanging off of the edge of it with her big, smiling beak in my face. “I always knew you two were gonna end up together!”

I scoot backwards a tiny bit, blushing. “W-What?”

“It’s common sense,” says Sandbar. From just over the horizon of my mattress I can see his eyes from his spot on the floor, and he’s smiling too.

“How?” I ask again.

Silverstream, somehow, amps up her happiness. It’s nearly cloying to taste, but only nearly. “The way that you two somehow always end up doing things together, despite your differences! The way that you don’t even have differences, sometimes! And and and and—well, it’s pretty obvious that me, Gallus and Sandbar and Yona are doomed to a love square for the next three years that none of us want to talk about.”

“What?” Gallus asks.

“Why three?” Yona chimes in.

“You guys actually think me and her could work out?” I ask.

“Yes!” All of them speak at the same time, rattling off various phrases of support and excitement.

I squirm. This is almost as nerve-wracking as if they disapproved.

Silverstream falls off of my bed, landing on the floor hard. When I crawl to the edge of the mattress to see if she’s okay, I see Gallus and Sandbar already petting her gently on the head and neck while she looks like she’s having the time of her life. “So,” Gallus says. “What did you need?”

What do I need? “I need a basket to carry the food and drink, a warm blanket to spread over the grass, cushions to sit on, and a lamp.”

“Don’t you have all of those things?” Gallus tilts his head.

“I thought it’d be more special if I got them from you.” I blush. “Is that weird?”

“Not in least!” Yona exclaims. “Yak has basket from Yakyakistan for you!”

With that, she sends a little love my way. Delicious. I nod at her. “Thank you, Yona.”

“I guess I’ll take care of the blanket,” Sandbar says. He breaks out into a grin. “You’re always fiending after my favorite one during study group anyway.”

Wow. The blanket? His thick, soft gray one that we all take turns snuggling in because it’s just that good? “Sandbar, I…” I falter. “I’m not sure what to say. Thank you.”

“Eh.” He waves a hoof. “No biggie.”

“I’ll give you a lamp!” Silverstream says, flaring her wings and accidentally pushing Sandbar and Gallus away from her. “I have nine unused lamps in my room and I’d bet that one of them just wants to do its job.”

“That leaves me with the cushions, huh?” Gallus snarks. “Well, you’re in luck. Professor Rares made me make a few last semester that I’m actually kinda proud of.”

The amount of love in the room would be palpable to someone who doesn’t eat emotions. To someone who does, it’s like being surrounded by warm hugs on a cold night. And to think that it’s all coming from my friends. Creatures who like me for me, and who just want the best for me! It was unimaginable back when I first came to the school, but now it’s just reality. Life really is better than dreaming, sometimes.

“Can I call for a group hug?” I ask, starting to climb down from my bed. “I really need one.”

They’re happy to oblige.


Everything’s perfectly set up. The blanket’s out, I have gems and cider and the lamp is lighting everything quite nicely and the cushions are as comfy as Gallus said they’d be. It’s twilight; the sunset is blending into the early night and the air is getting just a tad chilly, which is perfect for snuggling. Of course something had to go wrong.

Smolder’s late. I check the pocket watch I brought with me. Ten minutes late.

I mean, on the bright side, at least there’s no food here to get cold. On the other side, well, what if she doesn’t show up at all? What if the cider’s bad?

What if the cider’s bad? I look to the basket, where the bottle of ever-changing rainbow liquid peeks out from a pile of rubies, sapphires and amethysts. I bought it because I was hoping that Smolder would recognize the presence of alcohol as something that coded this event as romantic, but if it’s bad and we can’t even drink, then…

I suppose I could take a tiny taste.

That’s what I tell myself at first. I pour my first glass, watching as the rainbow intensifies and even glows slightly when it swirls around, and then I take my first taste—

Beauty. That’s all I can say. It’s beautiful. It’s sweet, then it’s sour and then it’s even a tiny bit salty and it tastes like apples, sure, but it tastes like so much more and by the time I’ve finished my first glass I’ve realized that it tastes like love. Its flavor is always shifting but whatever form it takes is just pure perfection.

I pour another glass.

Smolder arrives fifteen minutes later in the same dress that she wore to our first tea party. A swaying glance to the bottle of cider tells me that I’ve somehow drunk it all while worrying my mind away. And it didn’t even work!

She lands by the picnic, looking flustered and so cute I can’t help but grin.

“Hey Celly,” she says. “Sorry I’m late. You wouldn’t believe—”

“S’okay,” I tell her, waving it all away with a hoof. “You’re here now and that’s all everything matters.”

“All…” she squints. “Are you okay?”

“I’m great!” I say, jabbing my hoof in her direction. “Come snuggle me. I want snuggles.”

“Someone’s needy.”

“Yes! Snuggle time! Now!” I gasp slightly, placing my hoof over my mouth. “Please?”

Smolder laughs breathily and sits beside me. I drape half of my body onto her lap and before I know it she’s petting my elytra in just the right way. She’s the comfiest dragon I’ve ever had the pleasure of cuddling. I lean my head against her chest, murmuring non-words as I take in the delectable taste of her love.

“You’re so warm,” I say.

She starts scratching my neck with one claw and I open my elytra so she can stroke my back underneath. It feels amazing. Like she’s petting my very soul. Opposable digits are truly something else.

“So waaaaaarm,” I say again. “So good at scritches.”

“Professor Fluttershy doesn’t have us pet dogs in class for no reason,” she says.

“Are you calling me a bitch?” I chortle.

Smolder laughs as well, but there’s confusion in her. “Did you just swear?”

“Biological term.”

“That you made a pun out of with a curse word,” she says. “Are you feeling alright, Celly?”

“I’m fine!” I groan, nestling further into the softness of her dress. “You know something, Smolder?”


“You’re really good at petting.”

“You said that.”

“No but...” I tap a hoof on her knee repeatedly until I finally find the words. “I really like your claws. They’re so dangerous but they can be so delicate sometimes. Graceful, too. And I like your arms and your arm muscles and sometimes I just want to kiss your shoulders because they’re so nice and pretty and I like it when you smell like ash. I know I told you I hated it back when we were first getting to know each other but as long as you’re not super sweaty or anything I like your dragon smell. Is that weird? I guess that’s weird. I also really like your teeth. Sorry if that’s also weird, but you have the beautiful-est smile in the world. I like you. I like you. You know what I mean? And that’s just the physical stuff about you. I like the way that you carry yourself.”

I roll over onto my back. One of her claws moves to support my neck as I look up at her. Her expression is something that I would describe as ‘quietly awed’. I think she’s blushing, but I don’t know. I know that I am.

“You’re so sure of everything,” I say, “and even with the whole cute stuff thing, you take on the things that you’re scared of with so much bravery. I like that you push me to think in different ways. I like how stubborn you can be. I like how safe you make me feel and...and I like that sometimes you drive me crazy in a thousand different ways. You drive me crazy. Do you know that? I think I’m gonna throw up.”

Smolder smiles at me, then blinks, and her smile drops. “Wait, what was that last part?”

I lose my lunch on her chest and all over her lap, quivering as I vomit rainbows onto her beautiful dress. Tears pool in my eyes, trailing hot down my cheeks. My throat stings like mad. I end up running a few yards out and falling down, dry heaving into the grass until I think I’m safe.

Then I realize that I just did.

I’m sober now. Completely. I just destroyed the moment. The entire night, too. Maybe my life.
I look over, horrified, to see Smolder standing a few feet away with a blank expression. The regurgitated contents of the zap apple cider bottle are still staining her dress.

She hates me. She has to. Oh my god. What was I thinking? How are we ever going to recover from this? Maybe we’ll never recover. But we have the same friend group. Are we going to have to divide them up? One day with the boys and one day with the girls? What if Silverstream wants to hang out with Sandbar and Gallus on a day where she’s supposed to be with me and Yona? I’ve ruined everything!

Smolder breaks out into a tiny laugh, and then that becomes a belly-rumbling chortle. Without any hesitation, she steps back (still on the grass and not Sandbar’s blanket, thankfully) and breathes a solid stream of fire onto her dress, angling her head so she incinerates the entire thing off of her. The air ends up smelling like sulphur and apples.

Then she walks to me and sits beside me, wrapping a wing over my back. She smells like—

“You said you like it when I smell like ash, right?”

“You don’t hate me?” I ask, looking at her. She’s smiling! Why is she smiling?

“Of course not, Celly,” she says quietly. “Are you okay? Still feeling sick?”

“I threw up on you!”

“I know. I was there. It was kinda hilarious.”

“I got drunk.

“Yeah. Why?”

“Because!” I cry, looking down at the grass. The picnic is ruined. The moment is no longer romantic. I’m a joke. “Because I was going to ask you out tonight and I didn’t want to lose my nerve.”

My eyes widen. My neck snaps as I look back at Smolder, who looks similarly shocked. I don’t think either of us can believe that I just put everything out there in the open like that. I had a whole speech planned, too.

But there’s no going back after hearing that. And because she still hasn’t said anything I think I know what her answer is.

More tears build up at the corner of my eyes. My mouth quivers. “Smolder…”

“Shh,” she says, and pulls me into a hug, squeezing me tight.

“This is a consolation hug,” I say. “You don’t feel the same way.”

“I don’t know what consolation means,” she says, and pries me away.

She’s smiling. She’s so beautiful. I never thought love could be something that I could see, but if it looks like anything it looks like her.

I start crying. At least I tried, right? “Consolation means that—”

Then she kisses me.

It’s clumsy and a little bit too rough, and I want to worry about how I taste to her but I can’t, because all I can sense in this moment is her love. It’s like listening to a rousing speech and feeling inspired, and like eating your favorite meal after years of being starved. It’s so exactly, completely Smolder. Our first kiss lasts for long, and when it ends we go in for a longer one. Our tongues meet for the first time, and every slight movement, each small noise that squeaks out of her sets me on fire inside. I taste cinnamon, and I taste everything that can possibly be good. And I feel right.

Smolder draws away from me, eyes half-lidded. “For such a smart bug, you’re really dense sometimes.”

“That’s such a corny thing to say.”

“I know,” she says. “I love you.”

My heart races. “I love you too.”

I fall forward, but she supports me enough that it’s just my face that moves. Our noses bump into each other. Smolder grunts from slight pain, but her beaming smile offsets any worry that I have.

“I smelled gems earlier,” she says. “Did I smell right?”

“You did. Do you want to go eat them?”

“Maybe later. This is better.”

“Okay,” I close my eyes. “I love you. You know that?”

“I do know that,” she whispers, “and I love you.”

Comments ( 25 )

Daww that was a wild, beautiful ride!


Wow. The blanket?

This reminds me of my grandparents' house. They have a guest bedroom there, of course, with a nice queen-sized bed. No one ever wants it, though, not because it's bad, but because their house also has a box room - basically a glorified closest - with the most comfortable bed on Planet Earth in it. It's just a twin-size and as far as I know nothing is special about it, and yet you will have the most restful sleep of your life if you get it.

This was excellent!

Fucking adorable

Ri2 #6 · May 1st, 2020 · · ·

What was that about a three-year love square?

Love square huh? I have a feeling the interest I have in this is a thirst that will never quite be satisfied for me. Also, I really love the relationship between Ocellus and Gallus in this one! And I also just noticed they have the same last four letters in their name. Kinda random while I'm loving something else. XD

You truly are a master of the warm fuzzies. I stayed up an extra hour because I just couldn’t put it down. It’s 5am now, so I’m keeping this short, but suffice it to say that I love everything about this. The lesbians being the mainstay and garnering the bulk of the praise, I want to give a little more love to your portrayal of the Six in general. I love the dynamics you’ve carved out for them, how they differ from the ones I’ve personally adopted and yet still make perfect sense.

Thank you for blessing us with more of the good stuff, my man :>


Thank you so much for catching this! I fixed it as soon as you posted your comment but forgot to reply to it until now :raritycry:
I think dragons sweat, too, I just had no idea how to mention that organically lol

There's something amazingly comfy about perfectly sized tight spaces

It's still the greatest thing in the world at that point—your body's just too cowardly to handle any more

Ah yes the love square; it was an offhand comment at first but the more I think about it the more that I kind of want to write it :twilightsheepish:

Silverstream's got a lot of love to give

I'd be jealous of whoever she eventually settles down with

Danke <3

I was aiming for a bit more of a different dynamic with the Young Six than what I've been seeing on the site, I'm glad that they still make sense haha — bringing out a little more boldness within them (especially Ocellus) and playing more into their teenage aspect was a lot of fun

This was absolutely precious ❤️

I don’t like the alcohol stuff and I just can’t see Ocellus getting drunk even when worried, so I was pretty disappointed with how that was the ending. I usually prefer alcohol not existing at all, but that’s me. Just a personal hang up.

On the other hand, between Ocellus making the date personal and special; Silverstream being the master shipper she is; Gallus being insightful and empathetic (which I’ve always maintained he is); Smolder’s calm acceptance and the heartfelt declarations of love right off the bat? There was still a ton of stuff that made me love this story throughout.

I always look forward to reading your work and the wacky dynamics of the Students, the fluffy shipping especially. Not enough people do Smolcellus. Very well done, as always!

A very lovely romp with these six. I really liked your choice to make it a first person one and focus on the voice each character has.

Well this was a delight from beginning to end.

This place has eight, and we hog every single one.

This bit made me smile and I don't know why. I guess its just that cute.

I really like Gallus in the best friend role. The snark and teasing comes off so naturally.
Lastly I really loved the ending. All the thoughts slurring together when Ocellus is drunk is super cute. It also just sounds
really natural to me cause I've sounded the exact same way drunk before.

I wish I could put into more words exactly what I thought was so great about each part. Its just all so good.

aww my god thats so sweet ❤ I know these 2 will love each other This was a pretty good story very dramatic and very romantic nice job on it

. This is probably what Princess Celestia feels like, doesn’t it? They’re all looking to me for answers, inspired by my radiant beauty—

“Are you pretending to be Princess Celestia again?” Silverstream asks.

I don’t know why but I laughed so fucking hard at this
Great fic, can’t believe I put off reading it for so long. Your characterisation was on point, and aitd a really interesting look into the way Ocellus sees things. Giving her a crush on Twilight was super cute, and finding out that everyone already knew about it was hilarious. Definitely one of the best Smolder x Ocellus stories around

This was a nice little fic. I enjoy your version of the student six immensely. They were very easy to identify through dialogue alone. I'm also still trying to process the soy sauce scene. Other than that, you should stop writing fanfiction altogether and take over being my dad. I'm pretty sure we're the same age, but mom doesn't have to know that.


More like this of the other kids, please.

Our tongues meet for the first time


Okay, I guess the lingering taste of changeling vomit might not have- I mean, Ocellus had only just finished drinking the cider before Smolder arrived since it had only been 15 minutes since she started drinking...

Smolder's a dragon so... maybe... like the taste of amethyst would be for me, the taste of bug vomit is irrelevant to her?

I guess since changelings live off of love, it may have been the only thing Ocellus drank or ate that day and if it hadn't had any time to digest... Wait, how does changeling digestion work anyway?

Actually, isn't honey sometimes jokingly described as bee vomit?

Could it have been a zap apple-honey flavoured kiss? I don't even know what to think now.

Dress for the Dress Snek, Love for the Love Bug! :heart:

Loved it so much! :raritystarry:
It's pure and true and beautiful and tastes like hot tea with ginger and honey and mint!
You really are amazing at writing these two adorable dorks! :heart:

“I’ll give you a lamp!” Silverstream says, flaring her wings and accidentally pushing Sandbar and Gallus away from her. “I have nine unused lamps in my room and I’d bet that one of them just wants to do its job.”

she just like me fr

Thank you! I was scratching my head cuz I knew it sounded familiar. You have put many unsuccessful Google searches to rest, thank you very much in helping me sleep at night now that I know what it is.
Edit: I found it! Yay more fun cmc songs to listen to

Good and cute as hell!

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