• Published 28th Aug 2012
  • 5,261 Views, 241 Comments

Me, You, and a Library for Two - Dull Mist



A story about a stallion meeting his childhood crush for the first time in years.

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Introspection

Introspection

“Twilight likes me?”

“Twilight…likes me.”

“Twiiiiliiiight likes…me?”

No matter how many times Silver Quill said it, out loud or in his head, it just didn’t sound right. It was as though the words themselves, when put in that particular order, rejected one another rendering the words null.

“Twilight…likes…meeeeee…”

No, those words definitely didn’t sound right. It was like when an impatient child forced the wrong puzzle piece into a hole on the board. It sort of fit, but anyone with an eye and a brain knew that it wasn’t supposed to be there.

It would have been so easy to just dismiss the idea as lunacy. Silver Quill, with all of his powers of logic, just couldn’t fathom how a mare like Twilight would be interested in a stallion like him. Silver himself knew he wasn’t the most interesting of ponies, his only hobby not related to literature being singing in the shower. He didn’t know whether or not he was considered handsome by a mare’s standards, but he was pretty sure he was fairly average looking.

Twilight on the other hoof was nothing short of amazing. Incredibly smart, talented, and beautiful with a fantastic personality to boot. She was kind, caring, polite, and just an all around good pony. It confounded Silver that she wasn’t fending off the bachelors of Ponyville with a folded up chair every night as they desperately pined for her.

Because of all this, it would have been incredibly simple to forget all about it. There was just one small problem…

“Twilight has looked back at you several times while we were standing here." Rarity had explained when she told him he was the subject of her interest.

“She seems to really be interested in you.” Spike had told him.

The words of those two kept coming back to him throughout the rest of the day and left him in a hazy state of mind. They were only thing that kept Silver from leaving the notion of Twilight maybe possibly conceivably having feelings for him. But pretty soon, he realized that he was asking himself the wrong question, and he swiftly changed from “Does Twilight like me?” to…

“Do I like Twilight?”


The needle held in Twilight’s magical grip was flying at deadly speeds, making a veritable ring of certain death as it speedily flew through the cloth of her costume, in and out, in and out, in and out. She’d been working on overdrive for about 5 hours now, absolutely determined to have it finished before nightfall.

She looped the thread and needle through the fabric a few more times to seal the deal and to keep the stitch in place before deftly snipping of the end of the thread and tying the end into a knot.

It was finished. She stepped back to admire her work. The royal blues and bright golds of the fabrics matched nicely, giving the cloak that she had just finished putting together a striking look. The inside of the cloak was lined with thin black silk to make it more comfortable for her to wear. She took off the tall and pointed hat that she was already wearing atop her head and set it next to the completed cloak, seeing how the styles and colors looked aside one another.

“Perfect.” She whispered through a small smile. And indeed it was. Each line and curve carefully cut and put into place, resulting in a costume that was not only attractive, but 100% historically accurate, as Twilight Sparkle would have it no other way.

She wiped at a few droplets of sweat that had formed on her forehead from her intense concentration. She was determined to make this Nightmare Night costume as good as physically possible, and when Twilight Sparkle put her mind to something, she did it with gusto. She was hoping to impress Princess Luna with what she had made, as she was almost certain that she would be the only one who will even recognize it.

Twilight quickly and neatly folded the cloak as she pulled an old shoebox towards her. She gently put the cloak and hat into the box and quietly tucked it away into the deepest recesses of her closet where nopony would be able to find it.

“And that’s that.” she said proudly, dusting her hooves off against each other.

Twilight looked at the clock and saw that it was quarter past 6. She gave a small yawn as she uselessly tried to straighten out a few strands of her mane that had fallen out of order. After a few moments of flattening her hair only to have it stick up again, she shrugged and let it be.

She opened the door to her room and made her way downstairs; smiling as she inhaled the scent of Spike’s cooking. The little dragon never did disappoint when it came to the culinary arts. If he was a pony, she wouldn’t have been surprised if his cutie mark was a spatula or something else cooking related. He even liked to cook in his spare time.

When she reached the main floor, Twilight was met with a strange sight. Spike, as she expected, was in the kitchen, cooking something up while whistling a jaunty tune. Silver Quill however was doing something quite strange.

He was sitting in the main room of the library, but instead of reading as she would have expected him to be, he was just sitting in a chair and staring at his hooves. His mouth occasionally moved as he murmured something intelligible to himself and his head occasionally shook as he disagreed with something. All in all, he looked like a pony who was going through some sort of existential crises. But even though his mannerisms were all different, he still had the look of cool stoicism that he always carried around for some reason.

“I wonder why he always looks like that?” she wondered to herself. She had asked him before, but he hadn’t reacted positively to her questioning. She had sensed that he had gotten tense and a little bit upset, so she quickly let it drop. But she couldn’t help but be curious as to what could have coaxed such a reaction.

Twilight filed the thought away in her mental storage compartment to be further examined later. Now she was more interested in what prompted Silver Quill to look like he was pondering the very mysteries of life in the middle of her library.

“Hey.” She called to him.

He didn’t respond.

“Hey Silver.”

His ear twitched slightly, but still no response.

“Helloooo, Equestria to Silver Quill, anypony home?”

Finally, he looked up with a question in his eyes.

“Whatcha thinking about?” Twilight chirped. Silver looked back down at his hooves for a second before replying in a low voice.

“…Stuff.”

“Oh.” she replied simply. When Silver didn’t say anything else, Twilight continued.

“What kind of stuff?”

Silver’s head snapped back up, and his eyes met Twilight’s with an intense gaze. His brow was furrowed slightly, causing creases to form on his forehead, and his mouth was set in a small frown. Twilight was taken aback at his expression, which she could only describe as aggressively troubled. It was the most emotion she had seen on him besides a small smile.

Twilight only widened her own eyes as she looked back at him without saying a word. He was looking at her in a way that he never had before, as though he were trying to look past her physical appearances and see the contents of her soul. She was rooted in place by his gaze, so piercing that they could burn holes through industrial steel. Twilight could feel a slight blush creeping up on her under his intense scrutiny.

After a moment of being locked through their eyes, Silver’s sharp and intense and Twilight’s surprised and a little nervous, Silver finally broke eye contact and sighed once more.

“Just…stuff.” He finally answered, still not divulging any information on the machinations of his strange mind.

“Alright then...” She looked behind her to the kitchen where she could still hear Spike whistling. “I’m gonna go see how dinner is coming along.”

Silver nodded, not saying another word.

Twilight took a few steps towards the kitchen before turning back.

“Silver, is everything alright?”

Silver nodded again, still maintaining his quiet.

“Alright then…I guess I’ll talk to you later…”

Silver nodded.


“I thought I was good at this.”

That was the first thought that wet through Silver Quill’s mind as Twilight turned away from him and his stupidity. He sighed again and leaned his head against the backrest of the chair he was sitting on, his short mane hanging over the edge slightly.

“Emotions are supposed to be simple…”

And they were, 99.99% of the time. Ponies and their emotions, both of himself and others, were usually an open book to him. He had mastered his emotions out of necessity very early on in his life, and the resulted in him understanding them in a profound way that very few ponies could understand. He didn’t just know what “sad” or “angry” was, he also understood them down to their core, their essence. This understanding had granted him the unusual ability to read other ponies like an open book, being able to tell how they felt, and usually why if he knew them well enough, in the blink of an eye.

It was sort of like an emotional radar that gets stronger with use, like a muscle would. But even though this particular muscle was strong enough to uproot a tree, it apparently wasn’t strong enough to understand Twilight.

He didn’t understand it, and he only recently realized it when he was pondering Twilight’s feelings over him. He had started to think back to previous interactions with her to see if he could find some sort of clue as to how she felt, but no matter how hard he looked, he couldn’t find anything. It was strange, it was like she was a blind spot in his radar, a black pony shaped silhouette in a field of color.

“How did this happen?” he thought to himself sulkily. “I thought that I had outgrown that stupid crush…”

Even if Twilight was a complete mystery to him, he could still understand his own emotions, as jumbled and confused as they were. And after a little bit of soul searching, he had come to the conclusion that, yes, he did like Twilight.

Silver groaned and buried his face in his hooves. After a moment of focused breathing, his abdomen rising and falling, he tilted his head and opened an eye to peer at the grandfather clock standing proudly at the other end of the room. It read 6:18.

He sighed and heaved himself up off the chair and onto his hooves, swaying slightly as he did so. He made his way to the kitchen where he saw Twilight leaning over a pot that was resting on the stove and breathing in through her nose, smiling slightly as she took in the smell. Spike was standing next to her looking at her expectantly.

Silver cleared his throat slightly to get their attention. They turned their heads towards him simultaneously.

“I, uh…I’m going to turn in for the night. I’m really tired. Good night.” He said quickly before turning around and making his way upstairs. He missed the inquiring look that Spike gave Twilight, which she returned with a shrug.


Running. For his life, for his freedom, he didn’t know. He just knew that he needed to run. So he did.

He ran.

Through the trees and the shrubbery, he tore through the forest like a racer, moving faster than he’s ever had in his life. Behind him, he heard a rumbling noise that reminded him of a gurgling volcano right before it erupted, even though he had never seen such a thing before in his life. The ground was shaking slightly as the loud noise crashed through the air and slammed into his ears, it’s loudness shaking his brain in his skull.

Eventually, as he ran and as the day turned into night, the noise faded from a loud roar to a dull whisper that he had to strain to hear. But even though it sounded like he was getting away from the noise and the danger, he didn’t stop. He just kept on running.

He saw something strange further on in the distance, a gap in the trees that led to an wide area free of any obstructing foliage. He closed his eyes and jumped through the curtain of pine needles that was in his way, and instead of feeling his hooves touch dirt and leaves, he felt them land on soft grass.

He opened his eyes to a clearing bathed in moonlight and decorated with white and purple flowers, the petals of which slowly drifted through the air like cherry blossoms. The trademark pond and weeping willow tree immediately identified this as his spot, the one he would always go to write and get away from everything.

His heavy breathing quickly calmed, and he relaxed. He was safe here. This was his domain, and no harm could come to him as long as he remained in it. But there was something different about it, something that he didn’t remember being there before.

The pond was illuminated, as though there were a giant candle in the depths of it. He slowly walked towards the body of water to investigate the anomaly, but as soon as he took his first step, he heard something.

A long drawn out note, deep and throaty, made itself known to him. The only instrument Silver could identify it to be from was a cello. But as he listened, he became aware of another sound, one that hid in the background. A higher, more joyful sounding note that sounded as though it came from a violin was intertwined with the cello, almost being drowned out by it. But even though the violin note was so much quieter then the cello, he was sure that it was there.

The two sounds reverberated in his mind as he made his way to the pond to investigate. A bright white light was shining from the depths, and he peered over the edge to investigate. It was deeper then he remembered, and there looked to be swirling clouds of mist inside the pond. He leaned forward slightly to look closer.

For some reason, he found himself drawn to the pond, like a metal to a magnet. His eyes widened in fear as he felt himself being drawn in to the depths, and he soon fell through the surface of the water.

As soon as he broke through the surface of the water, he felt a feeling of calm wash through him, soothing his fears to almost nothing. But still, even though the white light reassured him and comforted him, he could still feel an underlying feeling of unease as he plummeted toward the light.


Silver’s eyes flew open with a sharp intake of breath. He stared at the ceiling for a few minutes in complete silence before realizing that something was slightly different about this morning in particular. To be more exact, he didn’t wake up with his hooves flailing to find that he and the bed that he was sleeping in was a complete mess. He also felt more rested than he had in several days for some reason.

He squinted at nothing in confusion as he lay on his back staring at the ceiling. The dream that he just woke from was almost exactly as all the other ones that had been tormenting him for the past few days, but there was something about it that seemed a little bit different. Unfortunately, he wasn’t given much of a chance to ponder the differences, as the details soon started to slip away from him no matter how hard he tried to hold onto them, like water dripping through cupped hooves.

He sighed, and sunk his head further into his pillow. He angled his head slightly to bring the view of the window into his peripheral vision. The translucent curtains were casting a golden glow throughout the room, and Silver could just make out the outlines of the trees, buildings, and morning ponies through the thin, luminescent screen.

The yellow of the light and the brown of the wood the room was both filled with ad made of combined with the sleepy warmth centralized to the bed he was laying in resulted in a sense of serene comfort. But even in such lovely surroundings, Silver slowly felt his mood darken.

With a grunt of annoyance, Silver threw the blankets over him, plunging his world into near darkness, as the covers weren’t thick enough to be completely opaque.

“What the hay is wrong with me…” he whispered to nothing as he slowly closed his eyes. His mind suddenly went blank, and he was bombarded with memories from long ago.

A young pony with a light grey coat, charcoal black hair, and no cutie mark was laying in a bed, nestled in the crook of the arm of a dull pink mare with a wavy lavender mane. The mare held a book out in front of her and her child, and read from as he looked at the pictures with interest.

Silver Quill’s eyelid twitched, but beyond that, he was still.

The same young pony, now a few years older and with a cutie mark of a quill being dipped into an inkwell was sitting on a stool next to a bed. The young pony held a book in his lap as he effortlessly read a story that was years ahead of his age to the pony who was next to him. She was lying on the bed with a smile on her face as she watched her son read to her for a change.

His upper lip rose into a soundless snarl, but beyond that, he was still.

The same young pony, even older now, was sitting on a stiff backed wooden chair next to a bed in a dark room. The small bed was occupied by a thin mare who had a slightly pained expression on her sleeping face and several intravenous tubes sticking out of her arms and legs. A single candle sat on the metal bedside table next to him, and he was slowly and quietly reading aloud from a book in its light. The mare in the bed gave no response to his small voice.

With growl, Silver Quill threw the blanket off of him and on to the floor. He leaped out of bed and forcefully opened his bedroom door with his magic. He quickly made his way to the bathroom where he turned the knob to the coldest it could go and splashed the frigid water on his face.

He stood there for several moments breathing heavily and dripping water. He stared at himself in the mirror for over a minute, evaluating himself. The face that he saw in the mirror stared back without a trace of emotion. It didn’t look angry, it didn’t look happy, it didn’t even look sad. It just looked empty.

Silver nodded his satisfaction. He lit his horn with a quick drying spell, efficiently removing every icy drop of water from his mane and coat. When he finished, he turned off the faucet and walked out of the bathroom, almost colliding with a sleepy Twilight Sparkle.

“Oh!” she exclaimed as she almost lost her footing in her morning haze as she quickly stopped walking. “Good morning Silver, you’re up early today.”

“Good morning Twilight. I guess I slept a little more deeply than usual last night.”

“Is that so?” Twilight said as she gave a tremendous yawn. “You must have stolen that sleep from me then, because I didn’t get much at all.”

“Why don’t you go back to bed then?” Silver asked.

She shook her head. “Oh no, that would throw my entire schedule into disarray." She smiled wryly. "I’ve been waking up at the exact same time ever since I was a filly, and I intend to keep it that way.”

Silver chuckled. “You’re determination is admirable, I suppose. What say you we go get you some coffee then?”

Twilight smiled wistfully. “Mmm, that sounds nice.”

Silver nodded and stepped aside, holding out his hoof. “After you then.”

Twilight smiled, and they both made their way to the kitchen. Silver quickly located some ground coffee beans and started up the coffee maker for Twilight, who was sitting on the table with her head laying on the top with her eyes closed.

Silver looked at her with his eyebrows raised. “Goodness, you must be tired. What kept you up all night?”

“I was...thinking.” Twilight answered hesitantly in a low voice.

Silver was starting to get worried. He walked over to her and gently laid his hoof on her shoulder. He felt her tense up briefly before relaxing again.

“Are you sure you’re alright Twilight? If you need to go back to sleep, then you probably should.”

Twilight didn’t open her eyes, but she did smile slightly. “I’ve woken up at exactly 7:00 for the past 5209 days, and I’m going for an even 5210.”

Silver looked at her dubiously. “That’s all well and good, but I don’t like the thought of you forcing yourself to stay awake, it’s not good for your health.”

One of Twilight’s eyes opened, and she gazed up at him as a slight blush tinged her cheeks. She smiled raised a hoof and reassuringly laid it against the one he was holding on her shoulder. “You don’t need to worry about me Silver, I’ll be fine.”

She slowly made to sit up, and Silver withdrew his hoof. Twilight pulled her hair out of her eyes and made an effort to look more awake. “I just need to get some caffeine in me and I’ll be good to go.”

Silver pursed his lips. “Alright then.” he said, not sounding entirely convinced. He made his way to the other side of the table and took a seat.

“So you were up all night thinking? About what?” he asked, trying to start up a conversation.

Twilight suddenly tensed, her shoulders rising and her ears laying back in a nervous way. “Oh, it was nothing important, don’t pay it any mind.” She said quickly.

Silver looked at her. Thankfully, he didn’t need his emotional radar to tell when a pony was being evasive, so he could tell that Twilight was hiding something. Even so, he just shrugged and nodded. If Twilight didn’t want to tell him, he wouldn’t force the issue.

Twilight looked relieved that he didn’t question any further, and then looked even more relieved at the beeping sound of the coffee machine announcing that the coffee was ready. She quickly got up and started hunting for a mug.

“Would you like a cup?” she called over her shoulder as she looked through the cabinet.

“No thank you, I’m not much of a coffee pony. Tea has always been my drink of choice.”

Twilight looked back. “Oh, well I could make you a pot if you want.”

Silver waved a hoof. “That’s alright, you just enjoy your coffee.”

Twilight smiled and nodded before reaching into the cabinet and withdrawing a bright orange mug with a picture of a red apple and the word “Appleoosa” in bright yellow letters. She poured herself a steaming cup of joe, dropped two cubes of sugar in it, and sat down.

Silver occupied himself by looking out the window as Twilight gently sipped at her coffee, making sure not to scald her mouth. After a few minutes though, she went from sipping at it to staring at it with a distant and somewhat anxious expression on her face.

“Silver?” she said in a timid voice. He looked over at her, ready to receive whatever words she had for him.

Twilight didn’t look up at him. “Are… are you mad at me?” she asked quietly.

Silver blinked in surprise. He waited a few moments to see if there was anything else she had to say, such as “just kidding,” but she didn’t. Instead she just looked at her mug.

“Of course not, why would I be?” he answered gently. Twilight fidgeted in her chair slightly, finally looking up at him shyly.

“Well, yesterday you looked kinda…angry.”

He tilted his head in confusion. “I did?”

Twilight met his eye, now looking a little less hesitant. “Yeah, when I came downstairs and talked to you, you had this really…intense look in your eyes.” She shrunk back down in her chair. “And then you didn’t really talk to me, so I was worried I might have offended you or something…”

Silver stared at her for a moment with a dumbfounded expression on his face. Suddenly, his hoof flew up a slapped against his forehead with a loud smack.

“I’m an idiot.” He thought.

Twilight looked at him curiously, his reaction not at all what she was expecting. Silver lowered his arm and looked her apologetically.

“I’m very sorry about that Twilight. I wasn’t mad at you, I was more mad at myself than anything. I didn’t realize how I must have come across.”

His ears drooped slightly and he lowered his head in a sort of apologetic bow.

“Sorry…” he said once more.

Twilight’s eyes were wide. “Oh. I see. Sort of.”

She smiled warmly at his guilty looking form. “Don’t worry about it Silver, It was just a mistake. No harm done.”

He looked back up at her, and nodded gratefully, giving her one of his small smiles, but then his eyebrows furrowed as a thought came to him.

“Was that why you couldn’t sleep? Because you were worried I was mad at you?” he inquired

Twilight blushed slightly. “Er…yeah…it’s kinda embarrassing…”

Silver had to repress a frown directed to himself. Because of his carelessness, he made Twilight worry and stress about something that could have easily been avoided. He also couldn’t help but feel a tad touched that she thinks so much of him that she would worry so much whether or not he was mad at her.

“No, you aren’t the one who needs to be embarrassed Twilight, I am. I am so, so sorry.” Silver said meaningfully. Twilight smiled comfortably at him for a moment before nodding.

“It’s alright Silver, don’t worry about it.” was all that she said to him. But Silver didn’t need to hear any more from her, her words conveyed her feelings well enough.

“Still…I feel like I should make it up to you somehow…” he said quietly.

Twilight cocked her head and looked at him curiously. Silver was looking down at the table lost in thought, not making a sound, and then his head suddenly snapped up as an idea occurred to him. Twilight flinched slightly as his eyes suddenly rose to meet hers.

“Let’s do something.” He said, completely straight faced. Twilight looked slightly taken aback.

“What do you mean?” she asked.

Silver leaned forward, not breaking eye contact. “I want to make it up to you. How about we go out and do something. Whatever you want.”

Her eyes widened in surprise. “Oh.” Her face reddened slightly. “l-like on a date?”

Silver blinked several times before replying. “Sure, like on a date.” he answered, still looking at her straight in the eye.

Twilight giggled. “Okay then…what will we do?”

Silver shrugged. “I don’t know.” he said simply.

“Oh…” she replied quietly, sinking down into her chair slightly. Then she perked up and looked at Silver Quill eagerly. “I think I have a book that outlines the proper itinerary for a typical date, I can go and-“

Twilight was cut off by Silver reaching over and putting hoof on top of hers. She looked up, startled, and after a while of meeting his meaningful gaze, smiled and nodded.

“You’re right, who needs books?”

Silver smiled.