• Published 16th Oct 2012
  • 16,839 Views, 1,592 Comments

Day One - Miniscule Literary

A man surviving in a cartoon world. Its not as easy as one might think.

  • ...

Smalls Steps in Ponyville

Fitting in in a new environment can be hard. This is especially the case when you are an alien with a reputation for being a monster.

The sun began to drift lazily from the sky as David and Pinkie made their way back toward Ponyville. The wind went from a pleasing break from the warm sun to a biting cold in the chilly evening air. Had they spent that much time at the picnic? He supposed it didn't really matter now. He had to focus on getting through Ponyville without inciting a panic.

Fear of his own demise had largely passed, at least coming from the denizens of Ponyville. He was much more afraid of a public outcry at this point. He hoped that his close proximity to Pinkie would keep things from getting too out of hand. After all, the town did not descend into chaos when he was bolting through its recesses with one of their own on his tail. Why should a calm stroll during the evening hours incite any different response?

Despite this, his mind remained a flurry of concern as they made their way into Ponyville proper. The few ponies they encountered on their way inside, of all different races, eyed him uneasily and some murmured behind his back, but otherwise did not react to his presence. Pinkie seemed ignorant of it all, happily bouncing down the street, waving and greeting a few ponies along the way. Most of them were ones he didn't recognize from the show. He could've sworn that she had greeted the same ponies more than once as well.

David took note of the homes that he passed. They all seemed almost uniformly the same size, but differed considerably in appearance. A few lights were visible from the outside, casting their brilliance into the darkened street beyond. A few windows slammed shut as they passed. He was no doubt the cause. It felt very strange, to be regarded like this. To be regarded as something so alien that it was frightening...

As they headed further into town, the number of ponies around them increased, as did the reactions. At least the few ponies they encounter on their way in had the decency to whisper when they spoke about him. The ones on the market street were having a full conversation about him while he stood but a few feet away. "Monster" and "strange" were thrown around quite often. The former would normally concern him, but no doubt they were just confirming his identity as the fabled "monkey monster". He had a feeling that would haunt him for quite a while.

The markets were quite active, even though it seemed close to the time when most ponies slept. He found himself drawn to a scene of two ponies arguing over prices. It was oddly strange to him; it seemed devoid of true malice. They weren't exactly pleasant about it, but it was very different from the arguing he was used to in his world. Seemingly the same, but not at the same time. Unnatural, but in a good way. Equestria was not a sea of sunshine and rainbows to make him want to gag, but it lacked the inherent aggression, heartbreak, and...evil of the world he knew. No one wanted to hurt each other, even if they acted as if they were about to. How interesting...

"CUTIE MARK CRUSADER MONSTER CATCHERS!" The sound left him with a ringing in his ear.

Oh hell how didn't he see this coming?

"Pinkie, I think we need to leave, now!" David urged. Pinkie had stopped at one of the stalls to chat with the owner. A lot of attention had been drawn to them with the Crusader's cry, even though the fillies themselves were no where in sight. A crowd had begun to form around them, and the bubbly earth pony seemed none the wiser.

"Something wrong, Mr. David?" she asked innocently, turning from her conversation to gaze up at him.

"In case you haven't noticed, we seem to be the center of attention right now," he murmured, glancing around worriedly. He hadn't seen or heard the Crusaders since their initial appearance. What were they up to?

"Huh. That's funny. What's everypony looking at?" Pinkie asked, moving from one side of the crowd to the other as if trying to deduce what was happening. Following their gaze, she once again found herself staring at David.

"Can we just get to Sugarcube Corner?" David practically growled to the pink pony, his eyes ever watching the crowd. The Crusaders had done considerable damage without even revealing themselves. He didn't really want to add "being mauled by fillies in front of audience" to his list of embarrassing encounters in Equestria. He wasn't particularly afraid of the enthusiastic trio, but he couldn't exactly lay the smack down on a bunch of kids. It was an awkward situation he would like to avoid.

"Okie dokie lokie!" Pinkie said with a smile, trotting off in the direction of what he hoped to be safety. David followed closely, keeping his eyes on the ponies they passed. The crowd had parted immediately as they tried to push through. Rather convenient, but it also left them quite exposed.

Much to David's surprise, they made it back to Sugarcube Corner without incident. The Crusaders were no where to be found even as they left the crowded market and entered the store where Pinkie called home. The Cakes were, of course, awake. They seemed a little caught off guard, noticing David as he entered while they ran back and forth from the store front to the kitchen. He assumed they had gotten the initial shock out of the way the previous day. The two little foals, Pound Cake and Pumpkin Cake, sat not far away, playing with an assortment of toys. Of course, they regarded David as they did any stranger, regardless of the fact that he wasn't exactly normal.

"Excuse me, Mr. and Mrs. Cake," David began as the two were making another trip from the kitchen to the front of the store. They jumped a little as he caught their attention, but nonetheless stopped to let him speak, nervous smiles on their features. "I just had to say: I'm sorry for intruding."

"Oh, it's not a problem, dear!" Mrs. Cake said nervously, shaking her head. "Pinkie's friends are always welcome here."

"Besides," Mr. Cake began, setting down a carton of pastries on the counter. "It was Pinkie's decision to let you stay. Sure, she lives here in Sugarcube Corner, but her life is her own. If she wants to open her home to her friends in need, that's her business," he explained with a smile. "Within reason, of course," he added with a nervous chuckle.

"Yeah, she's quite the giving pony," David responded, glancing over at Pinkie as she played with the Cake twins. The only real friend he had at this point. Hopefully he would find more in time. "Good night," David said with a short nod to the Cakes. They returned the gesture, and went back to work.

David made his way upstairs without waiting for Pinkie. He wasn't lying when he said he was beat. He felt as though the expression was literal. The past few days had drained him, mentally and physically. Now that things seemed to be improving, even slightly, the unnaturally driven state of being he was in seemed to melt away, leaving him to deal with the fatigue he had accumulated over those days. He just wanted to sleep.

Climbing the balcony stairs, he practically threw himself onto his makeshift bed. Despite being comprised of a pillow and some sheets, he felt as though it was the most comfortable thing in the world. He would worry about the next few steps in the morning. What to do with Twilight's request, with pursuing his own course. What he would do about a place of his own. He still felt terrible about staying under the pink pony's roof, even if she didn't. He had a lot to think about. One thing was certain, however.

He would get his damned journal back.