• Published 28th Aug 2012
  • 5,767 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.

  • ...



“Well that was nice. What now?” Silver Quill asked.

They had just left the Sugercube corner and were wandering the town square, looking at the various interesting wares for sale. Twilight looked thoughtful.

“Hmm, I don’t know. Is there anything in particular that you want to do?”

“Not really.” Silver Quill said before looking at Twilight seriously. “You know Twilight, you don’t need to spend so much time with me. I’m sure there are other things you must attend to, you told me yourself that your studies took up a lot of your time.”

Twilight looked back at him and grinned. “Actually, Princess Celestia told me that making sure you have a good stay in Ponyville was my newest assignment for my study of friendship, and that all of my other studies were to be put on hiatus for the meantime.”

“Really?” Silver Quill asked, surprised. “Well alright then. Although I’d hate to get in the way of your studies, if you showing me around town and making me comfortable is part of your studies, then I guess I’m fine with that.”

Twilight looked satisfied with that, and they continued wandering. Eventually, she looked back at Silver Quill with a smile on her face.

“Oh, I know! How about I introduce you to some of the other ponies of Ponyville? Mind you, I’m not the most popular of ponies, but I do know a fair amount of them. You’ll get to meet the rest of my friends!”

Silver Quill looked unsure. “Well, alright. But I’m not really what you would call a social pony. I prefer to keep to myself most of the time, so I’m not sure how well I’ll get along with your friends.”

Twilight looked at Silver Quill for a long moment, as though she was suddenly seeing him in an entirely different light. After a slightly uncomfortable moment of her examining him, she spoke.

“I think I’m starting to see why Princess Celestia asked me specifically to accommodate you. You remind me a lot of myself.”

Silver Quill raised his eyebrows curiously. “I do? How do you figure?”

Twilight looked ahead wistfully, remembering a time long gone. “I used to say the exact same thing about myself. I said that as long as I had my books, I was happy and didn’t need friends. I did have friends, but only two, and we sort of drifted apart after I was apprenticed to the Princess. But then, Princess Celestia gave me my assignment to study friendship in Ponyville, and within the first two days, I had met five amazing ponies who quickly became much more important to me than my books.”

Silver Quill put a hoof to his chin as he thought about what she said. His behaviour did sound an awful lot like what she described. He wasn’t antisocial by any means though, he liked having fun with other ponies just as much as the next stallion. He just preferred to be by himself most of the time. Maybe this was a good chance for him to let himself go a little bit.

He nodded firmly. “You know what; I think meeting the other townsponies would be a great idea. Let’s do it.”

“That’s the spirit!” Twilight said happily. “Don’t worry; I’m sure you’ll get along just fine with my friends.”

Silver Quill nodded. “Alright then, lead the way.”

Twilight and Silver Quill made their way down the main road. On the way, Twilight introduced him to as many ponies as she could. Derpy Hooves, Cheerilee, Cloud Skipper, Sunny Veil, Berry Punch, Wood Stain, Big Macintosh, and more.

It was mentally exhausting to Silver Quill, meeting all of these new ponies all in rapid succession, but he was enjoying himself. The ponies were all very friendly and more than willing to welcome him to their town. The contrast between Ponyville and Canterlot was eye opening for him. In Canterlot, a pony would walk right by you with their head held high and not even acknowledge your existence. Here, nearly everypony he passed smiled and nodded at him.

Twilight led Silver Quill to a large elegant building that she told him was called the Carousel Boutique.

“This is where my good friend Rarity works and lives.” She explained. “She’s a fashion designer, the only one in Ponyville. I think she’ll like you, what with you being from Canterlot and all.”

“What does me being from Canterlot have to do with her liking me?” Silver asked.

Twilight giggled. “You’ll see.”

They entered the building, and the first thing that he noticed was how colourful everything was. Fabrics and outfits of every different color of the rainbow and more were in every corner of the room. Poniquins were lined up at the display windows wearing beautiful dresses of different styles, and there were shelves and racks full of fabulous outfits.

A snow white unicorn with an elegantly styled purple mane was adjusting a poniquin display, tightening a strap here or tipping a hat there. She turned around at the sound of the door.

“Welcome to the Carousel Boutique, where every outfit is chic, unique, and magnifique!” she chanted in an upbeat voice with a hint of what sounded like a Prench accent. She blinked in surprise when she realized who she was addressing, then smiled. “Twilight dear, how nice to see you!”

The unicorn stepped away from her Poniquin and gave Twilight a one legged hug, which she returned. “Hey Rarity, how’s it going?”

“Oh you know, busy busy busy. So many ponies to astound with my designs, so little time. What brings you around my humble establishment? Do you need a new dress?”

“Not today Rarity, I’m actually here to introduce my newest friend Silver Quill.” Silver Quill stepped up next to Twilight. “He just came to Ponyville today for a little vacation from Canterlot and I’m introducing him to the ponies around town.”

At the word ‘Canterlot,’ Rarity’s entire demeanor changed. What was a slightly higher class than average, but relatively normal pony was replaced with a mare that would have fit right in at the most prestigious of royal gatherings.

“Canterlot you say?” The refined pony looked at Silver Quill and batted her eyes. “How interesting. It’s a pleasure to meet you, Sir Silver Quill.” She crossed one front leg over the other and bent into a graceful curtsy.

Silver Quill smiled. This was a game that he was all too familiar with, the game of subtlety and manners. He walked up to Rarity, took her front hoof in his and bent over to gently kiss it, as was proper for a stallion to do when first meeting a lady.

He let her hoof go and looked up at her. He spoke in a smooth voice, one he reserved only for nobles and royalty. “The pleasure is all mine, Miss Rarity.”

Her eyes were dancing. She obviously very rarely enjoyed the company of other ponies who knew the ins and outs of the refined royal scene. Silver Quill was probably a breath of fresh air for her.

“I must say," he continued. "Your name precedes you. It is quite the honor to meet the mare responsible for turning the fashion industry on its head.”

Rarity gave a quite unladylike burst of ecstatic laughter before composing herself, her cheeks slightly reddened. Standing beside them, Twilight was trying to stifle a giggle.

“Oh my, you flatter me. How ever did you come to hear of little old me?”

“It would be hard not to, what with Hoity Toity himself going on and on about how he has found ‘the next best designer since Glimmer Star herself.’ He was quite adamant about it too.”

Rarity shivered from head to hoof, her happiness making one of her eyes twitch and forcing out a small ‘squee’. Silver Quill had to suppress a laugh as he watched her struggle to keep her composure.

When she managed to settle herself, she eyed Silver Quill with a newfound interest. “My, a handsome stallion who knows his fashion, where in Equestria did you manage to find this one Twilight?” Rarity looked at Twilight, genuine curiosity in her eyes.

Silver Quill almost corrected her, telling her that it wasn't he who knew about fashion, but a friend of his who never spared a chance to thrust upon him everything he would ever need to know about it, and a fair amount that he wouldn't. He was, however, distracted at her comment on how he was 'handsome'. If he hadn't an unnaturally large amount of control of his emotions, he would have blushed.

Twilight shrugged halfheartedly. “To be honest Rarity, he just showed up out of nowhere. Princess Celestia requested me personally to help Silver enjoy his vacation in Ponyville.”

“Is that so?” Rarity turned her gaze to Silver Quill. “Well, you certainly can’t go wrong with Ponyville. With the amount of trouble this seemingly innocuous town can get into, it’s never a dull moment.” Rarity smiled fondly as she remembered exciting times that Silver Quill had no knowledge of.

Twilight groaned in an amused sort of way. “You can say that again, this is probably the worst town for a librarian to live. But still, it’s probably my favourite place in Equestria.”

Silver Quill looked from one Pony to the other. Both had content smiles on their faces, as though they both were exactly where they wanted to be in life and they knew it. “That,” he thought to himself, “is a privilege few ponies can claim.”

Twilight and Rarity’s self satisfied introspection was cut short. “Oh goodness, we should probably get going Silver, so many ponies to meet, so little time.”

“You’re probably right.” Silver Quill turned back to Rarity and gave her another, much less formal bow. “I hope to see you soon, Miss Rarity, it’s been a pleasure.”

Rarity returned his bow with her own small dip, and said in her velvety voice, “You can be sure that you will darling.”

Twilight and Rarity shared one more small hug before Twilight followed Silver Quill to the door. He couldn’t help but reflect on how comfortable the two mares seemed to be around each other, and how happy they seemed to be with their position in life. No matter how hard he tried to repress it, Silver Quill couldn’t help but be a little bit jealous.

”I want what they have.” he mused

“Told you you would get along with her.”

The two ponies were walking to the outskirts of the town where another one of Twilight Sparkle’s friends lived. They were walking down a narrow dirt road that led into the Everfree forest, but their real destination was the cottage located on the edge of it.

Twilight Sparkle looked pleasantly smug that she was right about how well her friend Rarity and Silver would interact. Silver Quill looked at her pointedly, then looked away so as not to distract himself from his walking. It wouldn’t do to get lost in those eyes again and trip over his own hooves.

“It’s not that remarkable that I did Twilight. Just because I keep to myself doesn’t mean that I’m socially incompetent. I figure you would know that better then anypony.”

Twilight nodded along absentmindedly. She looked as though she was looking at something that wasn’t there, an expression Silver recognized as being lost in thought. What she was thinking about he couldn’t guess, probably her own past as an introvert.

“Besides,” He continued, “I can get along well with anypony as long as they are a good pony inside.”

Twilight’s attention focused back on Silver Quill. “Well if that’s the case, you’ll get along great with my friend Fluttershy! She’s the kindest, most caring pony you’ll ever meet. Except…” Twilight paused for a second and looked down uncertainly.

Silver Quill noticed and looked at her, purposefully avoiding eye contact. “Something wrong Twilight?”

“No, nothing is wrong per se. I’m just worried how Fluttershy will react to you. She’s extremely shy, and to be honest, you kind of have an imposing aura about you what with all the…stoicism. I think it will take a while for her to warm up to you.”

Silver Quill waited several seconds to see if she had anything else to say, then several more to come up with his own answer. If what Twilight said was true and her friend was as shy as she said, it could be a problem. Back in Canterlot Silver Quill was known for his unintentionally intimidating look. His eyes were striking at best, and piercing at worst.

He tried to put on a confident look as he looked at Twilight. “Don’t worry; I’ll try to make myself seem more, I don't know, approachable.”

Twilight smiled at him, then cocked her head curiously.

“Why do you look so serious all the time anyway? I’ve only seen you smile a few times since you’ve arrived, but I can tell that it isn’t because you’re not happy or anything.”

Silver Quill gave a noncommittal shrug. “It's...just the way I've always been.”

Twilight suspected that there was something that he wasn't telling her, but she nodded her understanding anyway. They continued to walk the rest of the way in silence, content with admiring the sights around them. On one side was a field full of multicoloured wildflowers that gently swayed in the breeze, sending their sweet scent in their direction. On the other side, the Everfree forest stood tall and proud, the shortest of trees standing over 2 stories high. Even though it was one of the most dangerous places in all of Equestria, Silver Quill couldn’t help but think that it looked deceptively pretty with the way the shadows from the leaves and branches danced on the ground. Silver Quill could feel a steady stream of inspiration trickle in the back of his mind.

Eventually they reached humble cottage at the top of a hill just outside the Everfree forest. All around it were an unnatural amount of wildlife creatures, everything from birds to reptiles. There were chicken coops, bird feeders, dog houses, and other animal related things surrounding it. There was even a fairly large sized fish pond.

Silver Quill took a deep breath, and forced himself to put on the mask of an easygoing and pleasant pony, something he already was but didn’t show on his face. Twilight noticed his efforts and nodded her approval. She walked up to the front door and gently knocked.

They waited for a few moments, and the door opened. Standing in the doorway was baby yellow colored pegasus with a long flowing pink mane and big turquoise eyes. Not altogether a strange sight, but what was strange was the small white bunny who was standing on top of her head. And he did not look happy.

"Oh hi Twilight, What brings you here?" Silver Quill had to strain slightly to understand her words. Her voice at a decibel level the Silver suspected was specifically meant to not startle wild animals. Fluttershy gave him a shy look as she was greeting her friend and tried to put as much distance between her and Silver Quill as possible without flat out running away.

"Hi Fluttershy." Twilight replied. She eyed the bunny who was getting visibly more upset with each passing second. "Umm, is this a bad time?"

The bunny On Fluttershy's head nodded angrily, but Fluttershy thought otherwise. "Oh no," she insisted. "I was just making Angel's lunch. Is there something I can help you with?"

The snow white bunny pulled on Fluttershy's ears and stamped its foot on her head. Fluttershy winced, and tried to soothe her aggravated pet.

"Now now Angel, don't be like that. Why don't you- ouch, go on inside and wait for me, I'll be there to finish your lunch in a second."

Angel looked down at Fluttershy, then up at Twilight Sparkle. He made his discontent known by puffing out his cheeks and blowing one of the biggest raspberry Silver Quill had ever seen, then hopped off Fluttershy's head and back into the cottage."

Fluttershy smiles sheepishly at them. "Sorry about that" she apologized in her soft voice. "Angel tends to get really cranky when his lunch is late. Now, what can I do for you...two." Fluttershy just seemed to remember that she was in the presence of a pony she had never met before, and again tried to make herself seem as small as possible as she physically could.

Twilight looked at Silver Quill who was trying to look as non-oppressive as he could, but apparently it wasn't enough. Flutteshy eyed him as a small animal would; hesitant, and ready to run at the first sign of danger. Then she looked back at Fluttershy and spoke in a voice that didn't sound as confident as it did a few minutes ago.

"Well Fluttershy, I'm going around town and introducing Silver Quill here to my friends. He just came from Canterlot and will be staying in Ponyville for a little while, and it is my royal duty to make sure that he enjoys himself."

"Oh...I see." she replied hesitantly Fluttershy examined him like she would an interesting creature in the forest, one that she hasn't seen before and is unsure if she should be wary of it or not. "I-is he...is he nice?"

Silver Quill had stop himself from reacting at the shy pegasus' question. If he hadn't, he feared that he would have given a highly embarrassing 'awwww,' Because the way she was acting was just too cute to be allowed. Instead he just stood there, quiet and content with seeing what Twilight would say.

She giggled, and winked at Fluttershy encouragingly. "Why don't you ask him yourself?"

Fluttershy blinked, and retreated back into her mane a bit more at the prospect of dealing with the stern looking pony."Oh, okay..." she answered quietly. She turned to look up at Silver Quill and muttered. "Are you...nice?"

Silver Quill made a show of thinking about it, stroking his chin with a hoof, chewing on his lip thoughtfully he even looked down at himself as though the answer could be found somewhere on his body. Finally, he looked at Fluttershy and said deadpan, "I think so."

Twilight, watching his little dumbshow with a bemused expression on her face, covered her mouth with a hoof in order to hide smile that was creeping up on her. Fluttershy, however seemed to be slightly more at ease, and gradually began to come out from behind her mane.

"That's good." she muttered quietly. "M-my name is Fluttershy. It's nice to meet you."

Silver Quill gave her the gentlest smile he could muster and replied "It's nice to meet you too Fluttershy. I'm Silver Quill, I just arrived in Ponyville today."

Fluttershy was now almost completely out from behind her mane and started to look more comfortable being around him. "I see, that's nice." she looked uncertainly behind at the inside of her cottage, then at Silver Quill. "Would you, um, like to come in for some tea?"

Silver looked at Twilight, who nodded vigorously.

"Tea sounds lovely, thank you." he replied.

Fluttershy smiled weakly at him, accepting his thanks. She turned back into her house and waved them in. Twilight winked at him as she followed her, and Silver Quill walked in after Twilight.

Silver Quill was instantly assaulted with the smell of what seemed to be a zoo that was extremely evident in the cottage. It wasn't unpleasant, but it was definitely strong. When he looked around, he realized that the room he was in pulled triple duty as the kitchen, living room, and dining room, and from the looks of it, Fluttershy didn't live alone here. There were a pair of hummingbirds drinking nectar from a potted plant on a windowsill, there was a gray tabby cat snoozing in a spot where the sunlight pooled in through the window, there was even a flamingo standing on one leg with his head down drinking from a bowl of water. There were other animal related accessories were scattered around the room, cages, food bowls, toys, grooming supplies, and more.

Fluttershy shuffled her hooves awkwardly and shyly looked at Silver Quill while simultaneously trying to avoid eye contact. Evidently, she was still not entirely comfortable around him.

"Alright, I'll go and...get that tea now." she said quietly.

She slowly walked to the kitchen, shooting a few glances back at Silver and Twilight who were standing in the middle of the living room. Silver Quill leaned in close to Twilight, not taking his eyes off Fluttershy in case she turned around and he needed to act inconspicuous, but also so that he didn't get distracted by his close proximity to Twilight.

"I don't think think she's taken a liking to me." Silver Quill whispered.

"That's just how Fluttershy is." she murmured back. "Give her some time and she'll warm up."

Silver Quill nodded, and was pulled away from Twilight by the sound of Fluttershy's voice. Thankfully, she only called behind over her shoulder and didn't catch them talking behind her back.

"Would type of tea would you two like? I have green, oolong, yellow, white, and jasmine." she called from the kitchen over the sound of a boiling tea kettle. The high pitched whistle slowly died down when Fluttershy quickly moved it from one stove burner to another.

"Green for me please." Silver called.

"And I'll take jasmine, thank you." Twilight answered.

Fluttershy nodded, still not looking at them as she got the tea bags out of the cupboard and continued preparing the tea.

Silver Quill leaned back toward Twilight and muttered "What should I do to make her more comfortable around me? I don't like the idea of a pony being scared of me."

Twilight cracked a small smile and whispered "Maybe if you ask her abou-"

"It's ready!" Fluttershy walked back into the living room carrying a tray holding three steaming hot mugs of tea in front of her on her two outstretched wings. She placed it down on the coffee table in the middle of the living room surrounded by comfortable corduroy chairs. "Sorry it took so long" she muttered.

Silver Quill smiled reassuringly at her as he picked up his cup and sat down. He held the cup in his two front hooves, enjoying the feeling of the warmth seeping through the porcelain and helping him calm his nerves. "It's quite alright. Thank you for going through the trouble."

Fluttershy gave him a small nod and took a sip from her mug as she looked disinterestedly around the room to avoid looking at him, obviously still nervous at having a pony she just met inside her home. Occasionally she would accidentally look at Silver and smile sheepishly, then turn away again. Silver Quill frowned and took a sip of his own tea. The mild yet sharp taste coupled with the heat washed away some of the fog in his mind and helped him think clearly.

Silver Quill snuck an uncertain glance at Twilight while Fluttershy was busy looking at her hooves. She gave him an eager nod, so Silver Quill took a deep breath and gave a silent prayer that this would work.

"Sooo, Fluttershy," he started slowly. Fluttershy turned her head towards him and raised her eyebrows curiously. "I'm going to take a guess and say that, what with how many I've seen so far, you like animals?"

The effects were minimal, but instantaneous. She instantly perked up, her eyes becoming a little bit wider and her back a little bit straighter.

"Oh yes, I do." she said in probably the loudest volume Silver had heard so far coming from her directed at him.

Twilight looked back and forth from Silver Quill to Fluttershy, her left ear twitching slightly in anticipation. Silver Quill gave the room another appraising glance as he thought of what to say next.

"Well, I'm rather fond of animals myself. Actually, I was wondering if you could help me with something. Something animal related." He said matter of factly.

As the conversation turned more and more to the subject that Silver Quill was starting to guess was the inspiration for Fluttershy's butterfly cutie mark, she seemed to get much more interested in him. She cocked her head and looked at him quizzically. Progress, it seemed.

"Well you see, back in Canterlot I live by myself, and I've been feeling a little bit lonely as of late." Silver explained. "I've been thinking about getting a pet to keep me company when I get back, but I'm not sure what kind I should get. Do you have any advice you could give me?"

It wasn't true of course. While Silver Quill did like animals, he liked them just as much as any other pony, and while he had thought about getting a cuddly companion for himself, he wasn't actually planning on getting one. He was just trying to get Fluttershy talking so she would be more comfortable around him. But who knows, maybe she'll be able to convince him to actually get one.

Fluttershy's ears perked up and she immediately got what Silver assumed would be considered a wide smile for her and a small one for anypony else. She sat up in her chair, her tea sitting forgotten on the table next to her.

"I'm glad you asked Silver Quill! I'm always happy to help somepony find a furry new best friend. Or maybe a non furry new best friend. There's many different kinds of new best friends so I'm sure we'll find you your perfect pet." Fluttershy's attention was now wholly focused on Silver Quill, her eyes bright with interest. she looked positively eager to share her undoubtedly vast knowledge on animals with him.

Silver Quill smiled gratefully. "That's great, thank you. And please, call me Silver."

Fluttershy nodded and smiled with genuine warmth. Silver let himself feel a twinge of smug pleasure at successfully getting her to feel comfortable around him. Fluttershy clapped her two front hooves in a business like manner and looked at Silver Quill expectantly.

"Alright, first things first. What are you looking for in a pet?" she asked.

Throughout the next twenty or so minutes, Fluttershy interviewed him on what qualities he wanted in his pet. How big or small, how loud or quiet, what type of sound it made, if any at all. Once she was satisfied with his answer, she had proudly told him that his perfect pet was a cockatiel. Cockatiels according to her are good first time pets because they are easy to train and care for whilst being affectionate and entertaining. They are relatively quiet, but when they do make noise, it's usually in little whistles or tunes, things that Silver Quill wouldn't mind as it would add a little bit of entertainment to his life.

Silver Quill and Twilight left Fluttershy's cottage after Fluttershy's ill tempered pet of her own decided that enough was enough, I want lunch NOW. Fluttershy bade them goodbye from the doorway as they left.

"Well would you look at you." Twilight commented, sounding impressed as they walked the dirt road back to Ponyville.

Silver looked down at himself, checking to make sure nothing was amiss. "What is it, is there something on my coat?"

Twilight threw her head back and gave a loud laugh. After a few seconds, she looked back at Silver Quill, grinning. "What I mean to say is; look at you, new to Ponyville and already you've made three great new friends. Not bad at all."

Silver Quill stopped abruptly, his eyes wide in surprise. Twilight walked a few more hoofs before she realized he wasn't walking with her, and looked back at him curiously.

"I have?" He wondered. Twilight stared at him, uncomprehending. Then she realized what he meant and chuckled.

"Well of course you have. Rarity, Fluttershy, and Myself. We're your friends now."

Silver Quill stood rooted for a few seconds, thinking to myself. Finally, he looked up at her and nodded.

"Right. We're friends now." he said firmly.

Twilight returned his nod with her own. "And there's more where that came from. Now are you gonna stand there all day or what?"

Silver Quill trotted up to join his new friend, and together they continued walking.

A/N: I am my own worst critic, so it would help me immensely if you left a comment saying what you like about what is going on so far, or what you don't like and think needs to be fixed. Don''t be shy, I don't bite.