• Published 15th Oct 2012
  • 2,440 Views, 52 Comments

Books - a3V

  • ...
3
 52
 2,440

Oddities

Rainbow Dash never went to the Ponyville schoolhouse. As a matter of fact, she was only vaguely aware that Ponyville even had a schoolhouse, despite the fact that she passed by it every morning as she worked in the sky, batting away the clouds for the month-long clear skies scheduled by the bureaucrats up in Cloudsdale. She spent her days napping, as she was wont to do, and usually forgot about the little red building that stood on the outskirts of town.

Today, though, she stood face to face with the door. It was an unusual door, in that it was actually larger than a regular door, and Rainbow suspected that it used to be a farm when it was first constructed. Ponyville was an earth pony town, after all, and vegetables of all kinds were harvested in its early days. This particular building used to belong to the Rich family, before it was donated to the town a few years after Ponyville was founded.

She yawned and smacked her lips before rubbing her eyes with a hoof. She was about halfway through her nap before she realized it was almost one o'clock, and let the cloud float off towards her home where it would attach itself to the underside of the house, as usual. The little cloud had proven quite invaluable in secretly transporting literature through the skies without anypony noticing. Just Rainbow Dash being Rainbow Dash, moving clouds around for the next day's weather lineup.

The previous day or so had rendered it all for naught, though. All her books now resided in Ponyville's library, and here she was at Cheerilee's schoolhouse, on a weekend. The part of her mind that housed her usual, spunky self screamed at her to just get out of there, to go and enjoy the beautiful day by practicing maneuvers or challenging Applejack to a nice race. However, she was never one to back out of an appointment, especially since Cheerilee had dropped her previous habits and hadn't been as forthcoming. It wouldn't be very friendly of her to turn down the teacher down, would it?

Rainbow rapped on the door with three sharp clacks. No point in letting a weekend go to waste, especially if it involved books. She briefly wondered what would happen if the foals wrote a Gabby Gums article about her reading, and frowned. Scootaloo and her friends weren't acting very nicely during that period, and she really hoped that invasive journalism wouldn't take hold in Ponyville. It was to be expected from larger places like Manehatten or Canterlot, and the Wonderbolts were no stranger to mass media. Would she be ready for that, when the time comes?

The schoolhouse door swung open, revealing Cheerilee in reading glasses. "Oh my, Rainbow Dash! I was half expecting you to not show up, but you're actually a bit early."

"Hey, I'm a mare of my promises! Uh, most of the time." Certain memories involving Discord were dredged up, and Cheerilee raised an eyebrow as she put on a grimace. "I'd really rather not talk about it."

"Right, right. Well, come on in! I took the liberty of setting out a few books for you to read, and I've got my own copies as well. We can start with whichever one you want!"

Rainbow followed Cheerilee into the schoolhouse, and noticed the various posters and projects lining the side of the building, as well as the various little desks that dotted the center of the room. She could easily identify Scootaloo's desk, rainbow-colored streamers and various drawings of Wonderbolts dotting it.

And then she turned her attention to Cheerilee's desk.

"Whoa!" Her eyes followed a stack of books that nearly reached the ceiling. Normally this wouldn't be a problem for the book-loving pegasus, but the choice of literature shocked her. "These books have so many pages, Cheerilee! Do you see that book right there? It's twice as thick as my hoof! And that one's almost the size of Scootaloo!"

"Ah-ah, Rainbow. I saw the books you had with your 'study session' in the library. Those were some really high-level books!" Cheerilee's breathing became uneven and she put on a manic smile. "I'm so glad you gave me a second chance, because I'm going to make you read forever!"

"Wah!" Rainbow Dash recoiled as Cheerilee suddenly advanced forward, and looked around to find an exit. Of course, this being a schoolhouse there were plenty of windows. Rainbow threw caution to the wind as she darted for the closest one to escape—repair fees can be worried about later!

Unlike the usual happenings in Twilight's library, the window did not burst open, nor did it explode. Rainbow bounced off the surface of the window, spinning straight into Scootaloo's desk and sending rainbow streamers into the air. This was impossible! The windows weren't supposed to act like a rubber ball! Rainbow clambered over the desk and saw Cheerilee closing in, and attempted again to escape.

After being rebuffed from every single window, Rainbow Dash fell onto her back, exhausted. The door was for naught, as the lock had somehow jammed itself into place. Cheerilee stood still as she watched Rainbow Dash panic, and simply trotted over to the tired pegasus and peered down into her magenta eyes.

"I've got you now, Rainbow Dash."


"My goodness, Rainbow Dash. Where are your manners?"

"But I—you were going to make me read forever, and... and... horseapples. That was a nightmare, wasn't it?"

"It must be a very serious one for you to scream like that, Rainbow. My ears are still ringing." Cheerilee rubbed her ears with her hooves. "I guess I should have been used to screaming since I deal with foals all the time, but your voice is quite shrill for pony like you."

Rainbow looked down at the book she was reading, and breathed a sigh of relief when she saw no bits of drool on the pages. "Ah, right. We were reading The Haymaker's Omnibus. Not really into farming myself, so I guess I fell asleep while reading."

"Did you say I was going to make you read forever? As amusing as that would be, the last time I asked you to read that was exactly what happened. I really don't know what came over me that day, but I promise you it won't happen again."

"Sorry about that. It's still kind of scary. You being creepy, that is. Totally doesn't suit you, in my opinion."

"I admit I was wrong. A lot of what happened that day stems from certain things in my past, regarding a pegasus colt that I met very long ago."

Rainbow arched a brow. "Mind if I ask what happened?"

Cheerilee slammed her hoof down on the desk, snapping a pencil in half. "He threw out all my books! All of them, including my favorite picture book! I thought he was my friend, but he did it anyways!" Cheerilee huffed a bit before closing her eyes in meditation. "Later I found out it was by accident, but by then all the books were gone. I still have a bit of a sore spot when it comes to pegasi reading books, and I'm sorry I took it out on you, Rainbow."

"Wow. If somepony threw out all my books, I'd probably get really angry. You forgave him for that?"

"Well, to be honest he was kind of a klutz. I can barely remember his name now, although I did hear he got into the Wonderbolts. He's the vice captain now!"

"Wait. You're telling me you know Soarin'?" Rainbow leaned forward, interests raised.

"That's him! He was a good colt, but he was a bit of an airhead. He sends me a lot of the Wonderbolts merchandise, and Scootaloo eats it right up! Unfortunately, that's the only way that I can get her to pay attention, but Soarin' seems to be fine with it." Cheerilee looked over at the Wonderbolts stickers littering Scootaloo's desk. "I guess he was never really one for books, anyways. Belongs up in the clouds, just like his parents."

"Back up a minute. You've known Soarin' since he was a foal? How fast was he then? Did you know when he met Spitfire? Did he go to Highwing University?"

The rapid-fire nature of Dash's questions caught Cheerilee off guard, and she stuttered out her answer. "I-I don't know! He moved away after he started flight school, and he's only started sending me letters this year!"

"Hmmmm." Rainbow leaned back and reclined on the chair and gave Cheerilee a level gaze. "Okay. Back to the book."

Cheerilee looked down at her own copy. She was woefully behind Rainbow Dash, who appeared to be a speedreader—the pegasus went straight for the meat, and ignored many details. In the past few hours that Cheerilee had read with Rainbow, the former also noticed that certain things, like one-line sentences or equations, stood out far more easily to Dash. She could easily absorb multiple facts, but had a hard time digesting passages from history books and the lengthier novels.

Just like Soarin' used to.

Rainbow frowned as she picked up the Omnibus again. The inner workings of Equestria's hay farming industry were lost on her, and she tilted her book left and right to get a better look at a diagram of farming techniques. "Hey, Cheerilee. Did you used to work on a farm?"

"Hmm? Well, no I haven't." Cheerilee wrinkled her nose. "My family has always been more about public service."

"Yeah, my family's been pretty big into that stuff too. Working around the weather factory and all that."

"Well." Cheerilee cleared her throat. "I think that's quite enough for today, don't you?"

"Eh? But I just started on this chapter about the, uh... Natural Processes with Earth Pony Magic." Rainbow squinted at the text and snorted. "These eggheads are so literal with these chapter titles."

"I would like to talk, Rainbow Dash." Cheerilee closed her book gently and folded her hooves on the table. "I think I should clear up any bad ground we may still have about that incident."

"But, the book!" Rainbow shrunk back as Cheerilee silently glared at her, and sighed. "Alright, alright. I guess we can talk. Anything on your mind? You know I've already forgiven you about that mess, right?"

"No, nothing at all, Rainbow. I just want to get to know you a bit better."

"Uh, okay. Well, I'm Rainbow Dash, the awesomest pony in Equestria." Rainbow laughed. "That phrase is so overused! I really need to get a new introduction. Maybe one of the books about Wonderbolts has something I can use."

"Oh, Rainbow." Cheerilee waved a hoof in jest. "Everypony knows about you by now. I think even some ponies from Manehatten and Trottingham know, too!"

"I haven't been to Trottingham, though. I've been to Manehatten once for a Wonderbolts show, but I don't recall introducing myself to anypony except Fleetfoot."

"I believe your little fan Scootaloo may have been instrumental in that." Cheerilee brought out a bottle of water and took a long drought from it. "Hm. Scootaloo's actually quite the serious fan, you know. She mentions you to everypony who cares to listen, most of all me. I suppose that's why I wanted to apologize to you—Scootaloo is an ever-present reminder that you're still in town."

"Well, at least she's getting my name out, haha. I should ask her to tone it down, though. I don't want the Wonderbolts to think I'm some kind of braggart."

"As if you weren't already one?" Cheerilee smirked at her minor victory.

"Oh, hush." Rainbow smiled back belatedly. "Anyways, I guess you kinda want to know how I got into books? Funny story, actually—I think Fluttershy was the one who got me into books, even if she doesn't realize it. I was pretty into the Wonderbolts at that time, but she gave me a little flight manual that the Wonderbolts hands out to all the foals in flight school. I ate it right up, but it wasn't until Twilight gave me that Daring Do book in the hospital that I really started reading again."

"Ah, so that was what she was so happy about back then... please, do continue."

"I guess it sort of snowballed from there. I just had to finish reading the other Daring Do books, so I asked Derpy about any mail-order book magazines. She always has a few in stock to buy books for the mayor, so she lent me one. Let's just say one night of apple cider and a bunch of bits in the bank equates to a lot of new books in my house."

Cheerilee sat in silence for a minute before beckoning her conversation partner to continue. "Oh, um. I guess there's really not much to it after that. I started going for the Daring Do stuff first, then I branched out to all the other adventure books. Started getting a bit bored of that, so I looked up some pegasi history books, which led to Equestrian history books, which lead to Equestrian culture books, which led to comedy..."

"So I guess it's safe to say you've had a taste of every genre?"

"Well, almost. I stay away from the horror stuff. I can't believe anypony books like that! Why would they want to read about ponies getting killed in such gruesome fashion? Totally not awesome."

"Well, do you read romance novels as well?"

"Nah. That's more like Rarity's thing. The mushy stuff I can usually get from Fluttershy. She's always got good taste in that lovey stuff."

"Hmm." Cheerilee looked around idly while Rainbow played with a pencil on the desk. The situation had played out entirely differently in her head, especially the part where they would talk a bit more. She should have known that Rainbow wasn't really much of a conversationalist, but she was riding on that. The teacher gave out a long, heavy sigh before bringing out a new book from the nearby shelf.

"Want to read some Prench?"

Rainbow's gaze switched from Cheerilee to the book in her hooves, and back again. "Eh, why not?"

Comments ( 27 )
a3V

And such ends my first fic. I apologize if anyone read this expecting anything fantastical. This fic was meant to be my first foray into writing for almost two years, and the story (in my opinion) is very wavering. It is a Slice of Life fic, so it's quite mundane, straight up to the ending.

If anyone hasn't guessed it by now, I'm really big on the friendshipping. All of the ponies on the show are just so amiable, and it's really hard to envision them behaving otherwise, at least in Ponyville, and it seems like a "small town where everyone knows everyone else". I tried to capture that in this fic, but it really was rather secondary to my primary task in writing this:

Testing my writing ability. English was never my strong suit, and I was actually very reluctant in writing this fic at all. This was written mostly as a way to see where my grasp of writing structure was, and I think it turned out okay.

Thanks for reading my (totally boring) fic!

Hey, this was pretty good! I love the concept of Rainbow going a little crazy with reading once the mental dam broke in Read It and Weep, and I think you really captured the inner conflict between her natural curiosity and her desire to be perceived as 'cool'. My only complaint would be that the ending was a little abrupt, but nonetheless it tied up everything that needed to be tied up. Good work!:twilightsmile:

Its a good story, but there is no ending, really. It just suddenly stops.

I just realized I have a massive weakness against egghead Dashie

I'm just sad that it ended abruptly....so much potential well of course its just me and my incessant love for Rainbow Dash in closet egghead mode

I can feel tremendous amounts of potential in this one IMO (ok I noticed I just said the same thing twice already)

DF
DF #5 · Nov 11th, 2012 · · ·

I really liked this story, but the last, ohhhh, half or quarter of it, especially the very end, falls a bit flat. It's like the beginning of a buildup toward the finale, and then it just stops.

The ending feels like a chapter ending, with minor plot points being wrapped up, in preparation for the next series of plot points and chapters, rather than the ending of an entire story.

So, all in all I'd say: Strong opening, but the finish needs work.

Hmmm... Thinking a bit more about it, I'd say that the problem was this: Rainbow's expectations and feelings about being "discovered" builds up every encounter, but the when the encounter happens, the other shoe fails to drop, building up more expectations and tension for the next encounter.

First you have Pinkie, Applejack and Twilight, who all take it in stride, with barely a jibe.

Then Lyra who, with her introduction in the story and Rainbow's assertions, appears, at the least, somewhat manic. Then Rainbow goes to her house, reservations, worries and doubts in her mind, and nothing happens, except that they have a good time and begin to reestablish their friendship with no bumps in the road.

Eventually you get to the last encounter with Cheerilee, who has been protrayed as The Book Monster of Ponyville, and they have a very minor confrontation in the park, which is defused quickly but, seemingly, temporarily. Then, what has been built up as the finale, they meet up, at the schoolhouse rather than her house, as was the case with Lyra, which emphasizes her role as a teacher, giving a "clue" as to what their conflict is about. Then... they have a perfectly ordinary time, barring slight awkwardness due to the dream and their history, and it ends.

In short, the story builds itself up again and again, and then nothing happens.

...That ended up being a longer comment than I'd planned on.

Ciao.

Well, that ending was... sudden.:rainbowderp:

I WANTS MOAR!:raritydespair:

I stay away from the horror stuff. I can't believe anypony books like that!
Anychicken sure does. Especially after their heads are chopped off.

:trollestia:

I like the idea of a stack of books the same size of scootaloo
I bet the stack of books is cute!!!

"I'm so glad you gave me a second chance, because I'm going to make you read forever!"

Oh no, it's Nightmare Cheerilee! Everypony run! :daisylilyrose:

a3V

1597507

Yes, it became painfully obvious to me in the last chapter that I was running out of steam. I went into this story with no planning or outlining at all, and I assumed that the idea would eventually burn itself out. To be honest, the idea was rather brusque to begin with: Rainbow Dash reading lots of books, and a couple of other ponies finding out. I think it may have been better to leave it as a one-shot instead, but it is what it is.

To everyone who did read this, thanks for reading! The ending was a bit disappointing, even to me, but I am not the sharpest tool in the shed when it comes to writing.

1597676

Copy of what? :rainbowderp:

1599551
>says its a copy
>can't even say what it's a copy of

:rainbowlaugh:

Pathetic.

I really liked this, but it feels like an over-extended oneshot. The only longish-term sub-plot was Cheerilee, and that didn't give any 'payoff' in it's resolution. The idea that Rainbow Dash picks up a hobby of reading more books than Twilight does could lead to many things, but you didn't have that happen and that's why the ending feels flat. If you wanted to, you could put some kind of long-term thingumy or forshadowing of said thingumy throughout the earlier bits that RD can only solve with the power of nerdy-ness, and then ramp the comedy levels up in the ending. You're the author, what can you creatively think up?

a3V

1599903

Well like I said, this was my first jab at writing in a while. This fic was more of a test with my grasp of writing, rather than an attempt at an actual story. The story was just a secondary thing, because I've got another fic or two coming up that, in my opinion, have far better stories.

It reads like an overextended one-shot because that's really what it was. I won't deny that.

1600409
The honesty is strong with this one.

I liked it. It felt real. Not as a real episode (although I think it could be adapted to one), but as the real average day in the life of a person, or in this case, a pony. It's true that the ending is abrupt and not very spectacular, but most of the days in our life don't end in a spectacular way either, we just go to bed; so it's fine for me. :twilightsmile:

Wow, talk about abrupt endings...
And no, it wasn't boring, the entire idea was nice, there is a lot of potential to expand upon...

Very good story, it had a very abrupt ending, no doubt about it, but I don't really mind... it worked.

I do have to point out this line though,

"Wow. If somepony threw out all my books, I'd probably get really angry. You forgave him for that?"

Shouldn't Rainbow know first hand? She purchased what sounds like hundreds of books and had them in her home, in other words they were her private property... Twilight saw them and effectively stole them. Sure Rainbow can go check them out whenever she wants, but do you really think Twi is not going to shelve them and lend them out with the rest? No, she totally 'appropriated them on behalf of the government'... out-and-out theft. Case in point, Cheer says "Some of those books still have your name on them'" implying that the others have had her name and claim to them removed... not cool Twi', friends don't do that to their friends.

a3V

2136584

Thanks for catching that. It's fixed now.

Very cute, well written. The ending was really sudden though. I kept looking for the "next chapter button" until it clicked that it was done.

This was a really solid fic. It was a lot of fun and well written too. :) consider me a new fan.:twilightsmile:

a3V

2960721

Thanks for reading! :pinkiesmile:

This was my first piece of writing outside of education, so I don't think it turned out too bad. I don't think it turned out that well, either, but those are the breaks of attempting fanfiction.

2960749 *Grins* not just fanfiction, but any sort of writing, fiction or otherwise, the trick is learning from it no?:P

a3V

3429948

This was technically my first fic, so my writing skills are not that great. I would practice more, but classes take priority.

As for pegasi/pegasus, I think that's wholly debatable. I've seen discussions where one or the other was the only way to use it, and I think I might have tried to use pegasi as the plural to refer to the pegasi race.

I don't remember much about writing this fic, to be honest, or if I specifically chose to use "pegasi". It's been ages, and far more important things have popped up since then, so my memory is spotty at best. Anyways, thanks for commenting.

nicely done... keep it up... some interesting sentence and grammar choices... to me they are good but then again, I'm mostly a poet writer so... they look good.

I give it a 5 Derpys out of 5 Derpys...

:derpytongue2::derpytongue2::derpytongue2::derpytongue2::derpytongue2:

oh and FREAK-EN BOOKS... MAN :twilightsmile::twilightsmile::twilightsmile::twilightsmile::twilightsmile:

aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand Duck Face :duck:

a3V

3748175

Thanks for reading!

Poetry and actual writing are very different, unfortunately. I'm still learning how to write myself, but progress has been slow.

3748187 yeah I love to write poetry but I'm getting use to the written story structure... I just been trying to write the next chapter for my fanfic... but I'm brain dead, stupid writers block, WHY!!!!...

Keep on writing...

Login or register to comment