• Published 11th Oct 2021
  • 382 Views, 14 Comments

The Many Lives of Strawberry Sunrise - Silent Whisper

Most new ponies feel alone when they first come to Ponyville, but Strawberry Sunrise is far less alone than she thought.

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Designation: Scout

Dear Diary,

Okay, looking back on the old me’s entries, I kinda got the feeling that nopony wanted to be his/my friend. Let me tell ya, I was wrong! When I went to the big ol’ market today, everypony was waving hi at me! Bug, I tell ya, the swampling must’ve been avoiding them for days. Don’t worry, Strawberry Sunrise, I’ll be a much better you!

One of them did look at me a little funny while I shopped, though. And yeah, the old me didn’t like strawberries, but he was wrong about so many things. There’s nothing like these in Golden Coast! Sand crabs are nice and all, but their meat isn’t nearly so sweet! I should send some seeds home to Mum. I’m sure she’d appreciate it.

Things have been rough back home. Taking other Hives’ covers is a risky play, but Mum knows what she’s doing. We’re a small Hive, and we do what it takes to survive. I’m just glad she picked me to come out here. The weather’s really nice, and everything doesn’t taste like salt! Life is good in Ponytown.

No, Ponyville. Ponyville Ponyvone Ponyvony. Ponypony. Horse.

Oh, Strawberry Scoutrise, everypony in town is gonna see right through you! You weren’t funny or fun! You were a stick in the mud. You gotta change yourself gradually! Gotta… make it seem natural. You woke up one gorgeous morning, and you decided to be different!

It’ll be like you’re a brand new pony.

- Scout

Dear Diary,

It’s not fair! I thought the changeling switching me out would be from my Hive, but no! Mum said that our allies will be helping us maintain this cover, and I’ll be making my reports in-person! One of us’ll leave town after a week or two, and after a little bit, the other will trot back up the way the first one left, and it’ll be like she took a little walk… through the Everfree Forest.

Yup. Nothing strange about that!

So, the good news is that I get to go home and see Mum again, every few weeks! I’ve missed her a lot, even though I love being Strawberry.

On the other hoof, bad news is some other ‘ling from some weird Hive is gonna get to be my Strawberry Sunrise for a few weeks.

Good news, Strawberry’s really gonna change! She’ll probably have a better social life with two changelings trying to catch up on everyday news!

Bad news, she might end up sucking more than she did when I first got her, since it isn’t always gonna be me making the choices.

New changeling, wherever you are, you’d better do a good job pretending to be me who’s pretending to be Strawberry Sunrise! I’ll tell Mum if you don’t, and she’ll… she’ll… you’ll wish you didn’t mess with us! I don’t know why she thought you were a good idea. Golden Coast is the best Hive, and everyling knows it!

Side note-to-self, eating the flowers in a sandwich is socially acceptable, but as soon as you close your teeth over a flower in somepony’s yard

Don’t judge me, weird inferior ‘ling. Yard flowers are tastier than sandwich flowers.

- Scout

Designation: Ashen Grey of Hive Noctillus

It’s rude to speak so poorly about your allies, Scout. Be grateful I don’t report this back to my Queen. Since we are to share Strawberry Sunrise as a cover, I hope that you’ll retain some semblance of professionality in the future.

It would help if we began each of our entries with our designation/name and Hive, so we don’t get confused. Should your Hive require more allies, this will help it get far less confusing. It would also be helpful if we keep consistent record of notable interactions with the residents of Ponyville, so that we don’t forget any important details.

For example, today I spoke with Pinkie Pie (“The Pink One,” if the original changeling’s records are to be believed.) I ordered a dozen cupcakes, and delivered half of them to Night Owl’s library as a moving-away present. She seemed very grateful. I also planted some strawberry sprouts over the corpse of the previous changeling that held our position. One cannot “feed the plants” without any plants to feed.

I also apologized to Ms. Roseluck, regarding the daisies that had previously dotted her garden. Even assuming you are correct about the difference in flavors, it is disrespectful to eat another pony’s plants. They taught us that at the beginning of our infiltrator training, Scout. Am I to presume that your Hive learned things in a different order, or did you miss that day?

Desolation: Sit On It and Spin of Hive Go Buck Yourself

I started it, I’m the ‘ling in charge, and I’ll make the rules.

- Scout, Best Strawberry Sunrise

Designation: Ashen Grey of Hive Noctillus

You failed to mention that you were to attend an auction with one Rarity Belle. Do you know the lengths I had to go to in order to convince her that I, the one and only Strawberry Sunrise, merely forgot about such an important event? There was a good amount of grovelling involved, I assure you. We are fortunate that she is a forgiving sort.

Technically, you didn’t start it. That honor would go to our late swamp changeling. Like it or not, you and whatever allies your Hive will seek out will need to create Strawberry Sunrise together.

Also… be mindful of your language, Ms. Sit On It, lest your new nickname stick.

Destination: Scout of the Golden Coast

Ha! So it does have a sense of humor! Didn’t expect that from the bug whose vocabulary is made of the longest words in the pony dictionary.

I heard back from Mum. Guess we’re getting another allied Hive. Yaaay. As if you weren’t complicated enough, Ashen Grey. Hey, do changelings call you Ashen, or do they call you Grey? My siblings call me Scout, because Scout’s an easy short name that sounds good no matter how you say it. My Mum comes up with the best names.

What’s it like, in your Hive? Mine’s the best! We live on tiny rocky islands along the coast and eat sand crabs and fish for breakfast and live underwater! Can you even swim? Do you like fish? Do you think sand crabs go with strawberries?

Today I tried to eat a bee. Good news, it tastes different than a sand crab! Bad news, it tastes sharper than a sand crab. Strawberry Sunrise stayed home for the rest of the day, and the story is that she accidentally… ate a bee.

Designation: Ashen Grey of Hive Noctillus

You saw an insect that was brightly-striped, loudly humming a warning buzz, and your first instinct was to EAT IT? I’ll never understand you, though I strive to keep from judging your Hive from your behavior alone. Surely, you are the outlier. I mean this in a partially positive manner, mind; you keep Strawberry Sunrise from being as dull as the original was.

I do, in fact, have a sense of humor, though I see no need to prove it to you since, should all go well, we never shall meet. Regardless… why did the DJ Pony get captured by the Hive? The answer is “because she was full of wubs.” I did not come up with this joke, so do not blame me for its quality. (Unless, of course, you enjoyed it. In that case, you are welcome to believe that I originated it!)

I look forward to meeting our new allies. Again, hopefully not face-to-face.

Strawberry Sunrise, on her part, spent an additional day recovering from a truly coincidental bumblebee-related accident, then went to the Market, where she discussed opening a strawberry stall with the local apple farmer. She was cautious about the subject, however, so if we do not wish this as an occupation, we can back out of the topic, if necessary. The rest of the week passed by relatively uneventfully. It disturbs me how few questions I receive about your behavior as a whole.

Changelings of my Hive do not call me either Ashen nor Grey, nor Ashen Grey. If they must refer to me, they simply use whichever alias I am using at the time.

Regarding your other questions, Scout, Hive Noctillus is located near the White Tail Woods. We are nocturnal, and prefer the light of the stars to that of the day. We eat mostly birds and rabbits, and more readily embrace our carnivorous side than most Hives. Yes, I can swim, though not well, and no, I do not like fish. Please do not leave fish in the fridge again. It will not tempt me, and ponies do not usually eat fish.

I admit, I have a query in return. Do you breathe underwater, or do you hold your breath like a seal?

Designation: Nimbus of Hive Hurricane

Nice format. Pleasure to meet you both (meet me both? Disregard, syntax unimportant.) Hoping we will get along.

Scout, best wishes to your Hive. Hurricane stands with you and your Queen. May your troubles be light as the morning breeze.

Ash, you still owe me from Las Pegasus. Pay up, or I’ll schedule an uncomfortably thorough day at the spa for your turn as Strawberry Sunrise.

Today, Strawberry wrote in her journal. Contemplated being she, when she was a he, then she was truly a she, then a he again, and now none of the above as well. Debated meaning of life. Hid in her house when the sky turned black and cowered like a good citizen of Ponyville.

Also, agreed to help Rarity Belle carry boxes of new fabric into her shop over the weekend. If not completed by the time we switch, do note how pleased she is. She seemed eager for the assistance. Could end up being hard work. Always rewarding, especially when it isn’t my turn to do it.

… will speak in full sentences while under cover to maintain consistency, but not here. Apologies, communication faster with fewer unnecessary words. Important when your Hive is built into a northern storm. Energy becomes important to conserve, and the wind is rather loud.