• Published 28th Aug 2012
  • 5,285 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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Getting Settled

Getting Settled

Spike was confused, and more than a little bit uncomfortable. The stranger was looking at Twilight Sparkle with something that could either be terror or surprise, or a mix of the two, and he couldn't fathom why. He was fine when he walked in, he looked around, made small talk, was pretty much the ideal house guest. But as soon as Twilight Sparkle walked up from the basement, his entire demeanour changed completely. Now he was standing completely still, his eyes as wide aas dinner plates occasionally flitting from one side of the room to the other, as though looking for a much needed escape. From what, Spike hadn't the faintest idea. Twilight Sparkle on the other hand, was trying over and over again to coax him to introduce himself.

"So I was told you're a writer, what do you write? Mystery? Science Fiction? Romance?"

"..."

"Umm, I guess you could say I'm something of a writer myself, although my stuff doesn't really get published. I just write essays and research reports on various subjects. It's part of being Princess Celestia's personal student."

"..."

"Yeah uhhh, I'm pretty busy with all my studies. Guess that's to be expected though, being the student of one of the most powerful ponies in Equestria, right? Heh heh heh..." Twilight laughed nervously, desperately trying to dispel the awkwardness that was filling up the room.

"..."

"Heh...riiiight."

Spike looked between the two ponies, one suddenly taking a big interest in her mane and the other, well the other one was just being weird. He sighed and walked off to continue his daily reshelving and book organization routine, writing it off as another thing that he will understand 'when he's older' as Twilight likes to put it.


Saying that Silver Quill's mind was going a mile a minute would be an understatement, a lightyear a minute would have been much more accurate. In but a few short moments, he was vividly remembering his colthood and everything in it that involved the lavender filly. He was examining her mannerisms and her looks, mentally adding some maturity to them, and trying to see if they matched with the mare in front of him.

They did, to say the least. After he realized that fate must have been feeling particularly mischievous and that he was in the same room with his colthood crush, he started desperately trying to regain his faculties. In order to do that, he had to smother that incessant voice in his head.

"GREAT GALLOPING GAZELLES, of all the mares that Luna could have set me up with, she picked her! How did she know? Did she know, or is this just coincidence? Ah who cares, now I can do what I never could! I can talk to her and hang out with her and get to know her and we can share interests and we can talk about our favorite authors and..."

It took him a while, but he managed to suppress his more emotional side and replace it with the much more preferable quiet and calculating one instead. He shook his head violently in order to clear his mind, and cleared his throat.

"Ehe, my apologies, I don't know what came over me there. Allow me to properly introduce myself." He took a low bow, bending his right front leg across himself and lowering his head so that it almost touched the floor. It was a bit more than was required in this sort of social situation, but he needed to hide his face from her, as he was blushing furiously. "My name is Silver Quill; it's a pleasure to make your acquaintance."

Twilight breathed a very audible sigh of relief, glad that she apparently hadn't agreed to let some mad stallion stay with her for an extended period of time. He seemed normal enough, if a little bit eccentric. But if anypony was capable of socializing with eccentric ponies, it was her. Practice makes perfect after all.

She chuckled lightheartedly at his show of propriety. "Oh please, there's no need for that. I'm just a librarian, not some noble you need to bow to."

"On the contrary" he thought. "You are Princess Celestia's one and only student. You are about as noble as can be."

He didn't actually say any of this, and instead looked up at her and nodded.

"I'll remember that Miss Sparkle."

She gave him a funny look. "Wow, Princess Celestia was right when she said that you had never left Canterlot before now, I can see it all over you." She tsked, shaking her head with amusement clearly plain on her face. "Well, we're going to have to fix that!"

Silver Quill was perplexed. He didn't think that there was anything needed to be fixed with him. He was going to say so, but he remembered his encounter with the bright orange mare Applejack and how different they were made him think that Twilight Sparkle may be right.

"And...how do you propose we go about 'fixing' me, Miss Sparkle?" he asked nervously.

"Well first of all, you can just call me Twilight, no need for that 'Miss Sparkle" stuff. After that, we can make it up as we go." She looked at him pointedly, waiting for an answer.

He nodded, something that he's been doing an awful lot lately. "I'll do that, Twilight. And likewise, you can just call me Silver if you so desire."

She hummed in her excitement as she nodded vigorously, a broad smile bursting forth, making her face positively glow with joy. "Great! This is going to be so much fun! I've never had a friend stay over for more than a day or two, and especially not one who had similar interests as me! To be honest, I'm uh, a little nervous about it..." She giggled shyly and rubbed her two front hooves together.

"HA!" blurted out Spike from his position on top of the ladder near the bookshelves. "If you were just a little nervous, then I'm a cuddly little bunny rabbit!"

Twilight shot him a "if a certain dragon doesn't shut up, he's going to be working overtime" glance. He chuckled and turned back to his work.

Silver Quill raised an eyebrow and looked at Twilight questioningly, trying to ignore how cute she looked when she was nervous, lest he lose control of his mind again.

She brightened and looked out the window. "How about we go for a walk and I'll tell you? I have some errands to run, and I could use the company."

He was surprised. He was expecting to immediately put down his bags and start relaxing with a good book. But, he reasoned, it was a gorgeous day outside, and he wanted to see the rest of the town. No sense in saying inside.

“That would be nice. What should I do with my stuff?" He motioned to his saddlebags.

"Oh, we have your room all set up already, so you can put them there. Follow me, I'll show you!" She motioned with her hoof and started walking up the stairs to the second floor. She opened the door on the farthest end of the hallway and stepped in.

Silver Quill poked his head around the doorway and looked around. His room looked like most other rooms in the house with walls and floors made of polished wood. It was simply furnished with a bed, a dresser, a full length mirror, and a desk with a lamp on it. It was impeccably clean.

Twilight looked at him anxiously as he examined the room. She seemed to be nervous that he wouldn't like it, and if he were any other high class Canterlot pony, he probably wouldn't. Good thing he wasn't like any other Canterlot pony.

"It's lovely Twilight, thank you."

She smiled, pleased that he liked his room. He walked to his desk and put down his saddlebag, and as he did so, he realized that there was something odd about the lamp resting on it.

"A gem lamp? Aren't those really expensive? Why not use a normal kerosene lamp?" Gem lamps were different than normal flame lamps or candles in that the light was supplied by magically altered gems. The gems were made to absorb sunlight, store it, then release later at the flick of a switch. They were much more expensive due to the materials and spellwork needed to make them.

Twilight shook her head. "Oh I can't use anything that uses flame. The entire library, what with being inside a tree and storing hundreds of books, would go up in flames instantly with just one stray spark. Besides, all the gem lights in here were provided by Princess Celestia."

He slowly nodded his understanding. "Ah, of course. That makes sense." He took a look at himself in the mirror, and fixed up his slightly disheveled mane a little bit. This morning, when he woke up earlier then he normally would, his fatigue was visible throughout his entire body. Now, he felt like he could run a marathon with enough energy leftover to build himself his own house if he wanted to.

He turned around to face Twilight. "Okay, I'm ready to go when you are."

"Great, I'm ready to go right now!" Silver Quill followed her out of his room, down the stairs, and out the front door. Twilight called out to Spike who was in the basement performing his assistant duties telling him that she was going out for a while.

He and Twilight made their way down the main road of Ponyville heading to the town square where most of the various shops were located. While they walked, they chatted lightly, mainly about themselves.

"So Silver, tell me about yourself. What do you do in your free time. Any hobbies?" Twilight asked.

"To be honest, the only thing that I really like to do for fun is read. Mainly sci-fi or fantasy type fiction like "Wise Mare's Fear" or "Aragon."

Twilight raised her eyebrows at this. "Really? I never would have pegged you as somepony who was interested in fantasy."

He grinned. "Heh, you thought I would only read the older classical stories? Spend my nights reading Shakesmarean plays, or poring over the philosophical works of Ploto?"

Her cheeks reddened slightly. "Haha, kinda. You just seem like the type. Sorry about that."

Silver Quill waved a hoof, dismissing her apology as unnecessary. "Don't worry; I know what kind of picture I paint with my demeanour. And while I do enjoy the older works every now and then, my true love lies with fantasy. That's why I became a fantasy writer in the first place."

Twilight got excited, remembering that Princess Celestia mentioned that Silver Quill was writer a by trade. "That’s right, you're a writer! Have you had anything published?"

"Have you ever heard of the ‘Forest Rose’ series? I wrote that, under the pseudonym, "Sharpquill"

Her surprised expression told Silver Quill that she had heard of it."Oh my goddess, you wrote 'Thorn and Thistle' and 'The Blue Rose?' Wow, not only are you a writer, but you're a good one as well."

Silver smiled modestly, nodding his thanks for her compliment. "Oh, I still have a long way to go with my writing, but thanks. To be honest, the reason that I came to Ponyville in the first place was because I was having difficulty with writing the third book in the series, 'The Flower of the Ages,' so I came here to give my mind some time to relax."

Twilight nodded wisely. "Writers' block huh? I'm no stranger to that. But you were right to come here, rest and relaxation is the best way to unblock the river of creativity, that's for sure."

Silver Quill looked at her curiously. “My my, hear what I hear and see what I see, methinks that I am company of a fellow wordsmith.” Twilight burst out laughing at his ridiculousness.

“I wouldn’t go as far as to say that I am a ‘wordsmith,’ as you so eloquently put it. But my lifestyle does involve a good amount of writing.” When Silver Quill raised his eyebrows, she explained further. “I was sent to Ponyville by Princess Celestia to study friendship. Every time I learn something new about friendship, I write a letter to her explaining it. Even with my assistant Spike helping me with my work, that and all my other studies of magic and other subjects keep me quite occupied.”

A distant memory of the lavender filly and her extraordinary show of magical talent during the entrance exam to Princess Celestia’s School of Gifted Unicorns surfaced in the back of his mind. The lavender filly had become Princess Celestia’s own student, and Silver Quill had never seen her again.

He mentally kicked himself for not realizing sooner that the lavender filly back then and Princess Celestia’s student now were the same ponies. In retrospect, he must have been fairly thick to not have realized it earlier.

Silver Quill was apparently making these feelings known through his facial expression, enough for Twilight to notice. “Are you alright?” she asked with a touch of concern in her voice.

Broken out of his reverie, he nodded reassuringly at her. “Ah, yes I’m fine. Sorry about that, I kind of spaced out there for a second, something i seem to be doing a lot of today for some reason.”

“Oh.” she said simply.

They walked in silence for a few moments, Twilight greeting a few ponies she knew and Silver Quill looking around and taking in the sights. After a while, he turned back to her and asked, “So where are we going?”

“I’m a little short on writing supplies, so I’m going to Quills and Sofas to pick up some more.” She replied.

“There’s actually a shop called Quills and Sofas?” He asked disbelievingly. Twilight nodded, amused at his reaction. “I’m going to have to see this for myself.”

Twilight laughed and nodded, agreeing at the absurdity of it. “What can I say; Ponyville attracts all kinds of eccentrics.”

Silver nodded as he watched a grey mailmare pegasus with a yellow mane and eyes that pointed in different directions fly straight into the tree next to a mailbox in front of a house, sending the letters in her saddlebag flying out around her. She picked herself up, looked at the scattered letters on the ground, and facehoofed. “It certainly seems so.” He said.

Twilight stopped abruptly stopped walking. “Alright, we’re here. Quills and Sofas, the most specific shop in all of Equestria.”

And indeed it was. True to its name, it only sold two things, but from what he could tell, they were both of the highest quality. He could see why Twilight decided to come here. He bought a few nice quills while he was there, just in case.

Once they finished their business, they made their way outside into the town square. All around them were shops and stalls selling a variety of goods ranging from candies to clothing. The air was filled with the sound of ponies yelling to potential customers and promoting their goods, and the roads were packed with ponies going about their business. It reminded Silver Quill of the hustle and bustle of the average Canterlot street, voices clamouring for attention and ponies jostling everypony around them.

After Twilight had bought a few more things from the stalls and shops, they made their way out of the town square and sat down on a bench on the side of the road.

“Well, what should we do now?” asked Silver Quill. “I know hardly anything about this town, so it’s your decision.”

Twilight tapped her chin with her hoof, thinking. She perked up as an idea came to her. “How about we go and get something to eat? There’s a lovely place not too far from here that has the best cupcakes on this side of Equestria. Plus, you’ll be able to meet my good friend who works there.”

“Sounds good to me.” He replied. After a 5 minute walk, they arrived at a small but attractive bakery. It was extremely stylized, with pink walls and bright colourful designs that naturally drew the eye. It was designed to look likean oversized gingerbread house, Silver realized with some amusement. The sign on the front said “Sugercube Corner” in bright yellow letters.

They entered; a small bell over the door signalling their arrival. The interior was just as pretty as the exterior. Not only were the owners successful, but they had great taste in décor.

Twilight walked up to the front counter and looked around. There was nopony behind the counter, so she just waited. Silver Quill walked up next to her, examining the pastries on display. If they tasted as good as they looked, then Silver Quill would have to believe Twilight’s earlier comment about them being the “best cupcakes on this side of Equestria.”

A loud bang came from the kitchens, startling Silver Quill. Twilight however, only nodded knowingly as though she expected something of the sort to happen. “Pinkie, you here?” Twilight called after a few moments of waiting,

“Just a miiinnnuute!” came a sing-song voice from the kitchens behind the counter. Soon after, a bright pink pony with a poofy, cloud like mane, also pink, hopped out. She was wearing a chef hat that seemed to be twice as big as her head, and her face was covered in flour.

“Sorry for the wait everypony! I was trying to make the biggest cake possible by completely filling the oven with dough, although I accidentally forgot that dough expands. Long story short, we need a new oven. Oh hey Twilight, didn’t notice ya there!”

Twilight smiled at her friend. “Hi Pinkie, how’s it going?”

Twilight’s bubbly friend, that’s the best word Silver Quill could think of to describe her, bounced up and down in excitement.

“Well Twilight, it’s a beautiful day, ponies are smiling and laughing all across Ponyville, and I’m doing one of the most fun things in the entire world, baking!”

Twilight giggled, her friends infectious laughter affecting her. “Wow Pinkie, you love baking that much?”

Pinkie laughed as though Twilight asked the most ridiculous question in the world. “Of course I do silly-filly, baking is one of the most awesomest things in the world! It’s like science for hungry ponies!”

Twilight chuckled, and even Silver Quill cracked a small smile. Only then did she notice Silver Quill, and her head cocked to the side curiously.

“Oh right. Pinkie, I’d like you to meet my newest friend Silver Quill. Silver Quill, this is my good friend Pinkie Pie.”

“It’s a pleasure to meet you.” Silver Quill said politely. Pinkie Pie still stared at him, looking way more confused than she needed to be.

“That’s funny, I don’t remember seeing you around before, and I know everypony in Ponyville.”

“That’s probably because I just arrived at Ponyville today from Can-” Silver Quill stopped talking at Twilight’s frantic hoof gestures. She was jerking her hoof across her neck with a pained expression on her face, the universal signal for “shut the buck up.”

But it was too late, the damage had been done. Pinkie Pie gasped as though she was trying to suck in all of the air in the shop in one breath, and her eyes widened so much they almost became to big for their sockets.

“Um…” Silver Quill said nervously. Pinkie Pie was holding her breath, trying to hold back an outburst of what seemed to be profound excitement. Perhaps too much excitement, as it started to build up inside her, inflating her like a balloon and lifting her off the floor slightly.

Once the excitement pressure became too much for Pinkie Pie to bear, she exploded in a loud pop, with multicolored streamers flying out in every direction where she used to be standing accompanied by the sound of a kazoo.

After 10 seconds of silence, exasperated for Twilight, and terrified for Silver, he finally spoke. “Did I just…kill a pony?

Twilight sighed next to him. “No, don’t worry. She’s just being Pinkie Pie. Don’t ask how.” By the way she said it, Silver Quill suspected that “She’s just being Pinkie Pie” wasn’t an uncommon way to explain her actions.

They turned to the sound of hoofsteps coming down from the floor above them. A portly light blue pony was descending the steps, and smiled at them. “Why hello there Twilight, how nice to see you again.”

“Likewise Mrs. Cake.” She replied with a nod.

Mrs Cake looked around the shop. “Huh, where’s Pinkie Pie?”

“She exploded.” Twilight said without batting an eye.

“Ah, I see.” Mrs Cake seemed to be just as used to Pinkie Pie’s laws of physics breaking antics as Twilight. “So what can I get you two?”

“Two cupcakes please.”

“Right away dearie.”

Twilight and Silver Quill sat down with their cupcakes and began chatting. They talked about their lives in Ponyville and Canterlot, they talked about their favourite books and authors, they talked about their relationship with the Princess’s, and they talked about whatever else came to their mind.

As they sat there, Silver Quill found himself focusing less and less on their conversation and more on Twilight herself. His mouth was running on autopilot while his brain was absorbing every detail about her. The way she delicately tapped at her mouth with a napkin, they way her mane shifted when she moved, and every aspect of her mannerisms he could find.

"I need to remember to thank Luna again for this idea.” he thought to himself.



A/N Bonus points to anyone who knows where the "baking is like science for hungry ponies!" quote came from.