Much Ado About A Belle

by SuperPinkBrony12

First published

(Takes place after "Hard To Say Anything".) Cheerilee is crushed to hear that Big Macintosh has found a new special somepony, but convinces herself it's for the best. That is, until Big Mac meets with her to share an important confession.

(Takes place after "Hard To Say Anything", proofread by Smity1038 on Deviant Art.)

Cheerilee always thought she had something special with Big Macintosh, at least ever since that love poison fiasco a few Hearts and Hooves Days ago. But when word seeps out that Big Mac has found a new romantic partner in form of a baker named Sugar Belle, Cheerilee is devastated.

Struggling to come to terms with this revelation, Cheerilee tries to convince herself that this development is for the best. But then she's suddenly surprised when Big Mac shows up after school, in order to confess something rather important to her.

But is the confession what Cheerilee thinks it is?

Now has a dramatic reading, which can be viewed here.

The Confession

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It was almost the end of another school day, just minutes away from the ringing of the bell that would signify the end of class. Cheerilee could tell her students were aware of this fact, as they were all randomly chattering away, or scribbling notes on pieces of paper.

Naturally, it was impossible not to overhear parts of different conversations. But Cheerilee never liked to eavesdrop, it just wasn't polite. Even so, the mare couldn't help but listen in anyway, as Apple Bloom was busy talking to some of her friends about something.

"No way!" Diamond Tiara exclaimed, her eyes widening and her mouth dropping open in shock. "You three actually went to Starlight's old village all by yourselves?!"

"Well, technically we weren't supposed to go. We just sort of stowed away with Big Mac," Sweetie Belle confessed, trying not to look guilty. "But he didn't seem to mind, and it looks like he didn't tell anypony."

"Oh, you're so lucky! I've only heard stories about that place!" Diamond commented in reply. "Is true what they say?! Did those villagers really once give up their cutie marks and worship equality?! Or is that just an old pony's tale?"

"We didn't get the chance to ask. We were busy with other stuff," Scootaloo responded. "It was kind of an undercover operation. I still don't see why I had to be Shimmering Spectacle though." The filly added, glancing at Sweetie Belle.

"What? Apple Bloom had to help Big Mac, and you volunteered before you even knew what happened," Sweetie replied. "Besides, Sugar Belle didn't catch onto you."

Apple Bloom giggled. "I don't see how she didn't, you have a terrible disguised voice, Scootaloo."

"H-hey!" Scootaloo whined and quickly changed the subject. "Well, at least Big Mac and Sugar Belle got together in the end, even though we kind of made things worse. And that Feather Bangs guy was really nice, can't believe he was so nervous about talking to those mares when they kept swooning every time he said or did anything. I swear, if I ever grow up and start acting like that, knock some sense into me."

"You know, it's too bad we don't have any pictures of Big Mac and Sugar Belle together," Sweetie spoke up. "And I guess that means we'll have to take down that picture of Cheerilee and Big Mac eventually," In a whisper she added. "You think we should tell her?"

Apple Bloom shook her head and whispered. "Nah, Big Mac's probably already told her anyway. I do feel kind of sorry for her though, but maybe now she'll stop comin' by Sweet Apple Acres all the time to look for him."

"You know, I'll bet once word gets out that Miss. Cheerilee isn't dating Big Mac, ponies are gonna be lining up for miles around to win her heart," Silver Spoon giggled in reply. "I mean, anypony Big Mac once dated is sure to attract a lot of attention."

As the five fillies went on conversing with each other about Big Mac, Cheerilee felt her heart sink. She struggled to keep her lips from contorting themselves into a quiver. "So, Big Mac has a special somepony, and it's not me?" She thought to herself, as she slowly trotted back to her desk. "I... suppose I shouldn't be too surprised. Him and I, it probably wouldn't have worked out anyway. Though I have to admit he was quite a stallion." Cheerilee shook her head, it wouldn't do her any good to dwell on the subject when all it would do was lead to heartache.

Fortunately for the mare, the school bell rang right at that very moment. Its loud dings were able to snap her out of her ponderings for the time being. "Alright, everypony. See you all tomorrow." She announced, struggling to maintain her cheerful expression and tone of voice. She barely managed to keep her appearance long enough for the last of her students to trot out the door and close it behind them.

Now, Cheerilee was all alone. Naturally, it didn't take long for her thoughts to turn back to Big Mac, and her happy mood faded, replaced by a frown and a sigh. "Big Mac, I thought we had something special," She said to herself, stopping briefly as she realized what she was doing and sighed again. "Oh Cheerilee, Cheerilee, Cheerilee. There you go again, thinking only about romance and not about your profession. You need to move on, like Big Mac has."

Trotting over to her desk, Cheerilee turned her attention to a stack of papers that rested atop it next to a stamp and an ink pad. "I'll just grade these assignments, and then I can head home and sulk to myself all I want. Nopony has to know about any of this, especially not my students. And Big Mac... well I'm sure he'll tell me when he's darn good and ready. He's probably still thinking about how to best say what he needs to say without hurting my feelings." She thought to herself.

But alas, even grading papers and preparing the lesson plan for tomorrow wasn't enough to keep Cheerilee from thinking about Big Macintosh. It was hard not to, considering the fact that his little sister was one of her best students, and the fact that she saw him around town frequently. Cheerilee's sour mood only deepened, as her thoughts drifted back to the last time she had and Big Mac had gone out on a date. How long ago had that been? A few weeks? Maybe a month or two? No way could it have already been a year since they'd last dated, it still seemed so recent, as if it had happened just yesterday!

"Cheerilee, you've got to concentrate!" Cheerilee thought, giving herself a mental pep talk. "You and Big Mac would've never worked out anyway, you were far too busy with your lives. Besides, the only reason you two even got together, was because of that love poison the Cutie Mark Crusaders gave you. Otherwise, you'd never have even bothered to ask Big Mac for a date. You'd just go about your life, perfectly content with not having a special somepony. You're still young, romance can wait. Just look at how many of your friends are still single, you don't see them pursuing a romantic relationship."

Yet it seemed that the more Cheerilee tried not to think of Big Macintosh, the more her thoughts drifted to him. That majestic coat of red, that impressive yoke around his neck that he never took off (well except for that one time Cheerilee had seen him swimming without it, and she doubted he went to bed with it on), and those eyes, those beautiful, beautiful green eyes! She could gaze into them and would find it hard not to get lost in them, they were that attractive.

"Gah, what am I doing?! Why in the name of Celestia can I not stopping thinking about Big Mac and how gorgeous he looks?!" Cheerilee complained out loud! "It was all supposed to just be a friendly little joke to make sure the girls didn't try that love poison trick again! We never even really tried to go steady, and we didn't date that often! So then, why do I feel so torn up inside at the fact that Big Mac has found a new special somepony?" She wondered, a few faint tears forming in her eyes.

Just then, there came a knock at the classroom door. "It's probably Spoiled Rich come to yak my ear off about not 'fixing' her daughter's 'bad' behavior," Cheerilee thought, getting up from her desk. "Or it's Scootaloo asking if she can use Rainbow Dash's parents for her next Family Appreciation Day. Or maybe even Twilight come to borrow a book, we really should get a new town library built to replace the Golden Oak."

However, when Cheerilee opened the door, she was surprised at the pony that came trotting in. It was none other than Big Macintosh! For a brief moment Cheerilee's heart fluttered, before she realized what he was probably here for and her heart resumed its normal beating. "Guess he's finally found the words he wants to use to tell me about Sugar Belle," She thought to herself. "Well, I'll just have to let him know I have no hard feelings. Whoever he feels his heart belongs to is fine by me, as long as they treat him well I don't care if he ends up with somepony besides me."

"Uh, howdy Cheerilee," Big Mac greeted, looking into her eyes as if he were trying to read her thoughts. "Hope ya don't mind me stoppin' by for a bit. I've... got somethin' I wanna talk to ya about. Somethin' I probably should've cleared up a whole heck of a lot sooner."

Feigning ignorance, Cheerilee just trotted back to her desk as she lightly replied. "Oh, are you here to ask if the Ponytones can perform at the upcoming school fundraiser? I'm not naming names, but 'somepony' would like to be reimbursed for the money spent on the new playground equipment, even though they donated the money at their expense. And having the Ponytones as a headlining attraction would really draw a crowd."

Big Mac laughed as he shook his head, all the while trotting closer to Cheerilee. "Eenope, though if ya'd like to book us ya can talk to Rarity. Assumin' she ain't busy managin' her three boutiques of course."

Still hoping to maybe tiphoof around the subject and lighten the mood, Cheerilee jokingly replied. "Are you maybe volunteering to be Apple Bloom's pick for her next Family Appreciation Day? We haven't had you in in quite a while. The last few times it's been Granny Smith, and the most recent time it was Applejack."

Big Mac shook his head again. "Still eenope. That's two strikes so far, Cheerilee. One more strike and you're out."

Cheerilee sighed, trying her hardest not to frown. "Oh, you're no fun, Big Mac," She faintly grumbled. "I know why you're here. You don't have to pretend."

"Oh, Apple Bloom and her friends tell ya already? I kind of thought they'd keep it to themselves," Big Mac replied, approaching Cheerilee. "But I guess there's no harm tellin' ya. It's about Sugar Belle."

"Look, I know what you're going to tell me. I don't want you to feel bad, Big Mac," Cheerilee insisted, frantically waving her hooves. "If you wanna be with Sugar Belle, that's fine with me. Whatever makes you happy. I mean, we weren't even seriously in a relationship anyway. It was more of an occasional experiment then anything."

"Now hold on just an apple pickin' minute there, Cheerilee!" Big Mac said seriously. "Don't go puttin' words in my mouth before I've had a chance to say what I wanna say!"

"But... I thought you and Sugar Belle-" Cheerilee began.

Big Mac shushed Cheerilee with a hoof, before he told her. "We were, for a while. But the fact is..." A hint of sadness was reflected in the farm stallion's voice and what seemed like a faint tear appeared in his right eye as he then added. "It just didn't work out. It's a shame too, she kind of reminds me of my mom."

"Oh yes, I believe you mentioned her a few times," Cheerilee commented. "I would've loved to meet her. It sounds like she was a wonderful mare."

"Eeyup," Big Mac nodded. "And that's part of what drew me to Sugar Belle in the first place. The other part was 'cause I was the only one who could take time to go out to her village and help give her the apples she needs to expand her bakin'. I honestly thought we were gonna work out."

"Was it because of me?" Cheerilee asked, even though a part of her was kicking herself for even asking that. "I wouldn't want you to not be with the pony you love most, just because you were worried about breaking my heart. I wouldn't want you be to unhappy, just so that I could be happy. I'd never ask for that."

"Eenope," Big Mac shook his head. "You had nothin' to do with my decision to break things off with Sugar Belle and just agree for us to see other ponies. That village is her home, and she's clearly tied down to it. I can tell when somepony's put down roots and ain't lookin' to uproot 'em. Same holds true for me, I'm too tied down to this town to even think of leavin'. I was born, raised, and grew up here, and my family's lived here in Ponyville since its foundin'. Plus, it's where my parents are buried, it's the place where I can feel the closest to 'em. I can't bring myself to leave, not even to be with Sugar Belle. And I can't ask her to leave the place she calls home and move here to be with me."

"Well, what about a long distance relationship?" Cheerilee suggested. "I know it's not for everypony, but surely it wouldn't hurt you two to try."

"I considered it," Big Mac replied, then explained. "But I just don't think that's what either Sugar Belle or I am lookin' for in a romantic relationship. So we decided it was best to just be friends and that was the end of it. Sugar Belle wrote to me recently, told me she struck up a relationship with her close friend Party Favor. And that got me to thinkin', thinkin' 'bout you, and 'bout the fact that we haven't really done anythin' together as a couple in quite a while."

Cheerilee felt her cheeks flushing red, this had to be a dream! Any moment now, Princess Luna was going to emerge and tell Cheerilee that this was a fantasy she'd imagined after falling asleep at her desk. No way could it be real, it was too good! Yet, it all felt so real. Maybe it wasn't a dream? Maybe it was really happening? Well, there was only one way to find out. "Big Mac?" Cheerilee asked in a dreamy tone, wondering if it was possible for miniature hearts to appear around her like they always seemed to do in her romantic novels.

"Eeyup?" Big Mac asked in reply.

"Push me!" Cheerilee said loudly.

"Beg your pardon, what?!" Big Mac exclaimed, hoping he'd somehow misheard.

"Push me, just lightly though so you don't break anything," Cheerilee explained, struggling to keep herself composed. "That way I'll know if this a dream."

"Uh, okay, I'll try to be gentle. Ya sure ya want me to do this?" Big Mac asked, as he carefully moved a free hoof close to Cheerilee.

Cheerilee nodded. "I'm sure. Now come on, do it!"

Reluctantly, Big Mac did as Cheerilee had asked and lightly pushed her off her seat. Cheerilee hit the floor, groaning slightly as she picked herself up and dusted herself off. "Ya want me to do that again?" Big Mac asked, hoping Cheerilee would say no.

Sure enough, Cheerilee shook her head. "No thank you, Big Mac. That was good enough. I know I'm not dreaming now, which is nice," Her cheeks began to flush red all over again. "So, are you doing anything later this afternoon?"

"Eenope," Big Mac nodded. "I was hopin' ya'd be free by then, so we could have a picnic supper on a hill and watch the sunset together. It's quite lovely at this time of year, and now that Apple Bloom's old enough to help with some of the chores, I'm sure Granny Smith won't mind me takin' an evenin' off to be with ya."

"Oh, Big Mac!" Cheerilee dreamily sighed. "You didn't have to do any of this! But I'm glad you did! That picnic supper sounds lovely!"

Big Mac smiled and turned to leave. "Guess it's a date then. I'll be waitin' for ya at the edge of Sweet Apple Acres. Make sure to bring an appetite, 'cause I'm gonna stuff a picnic basket full enough to feed an army of parasprites!" And with that, he departed the school house.

Cheerilee could barely get herself to focus on grading papers after that, but somehow she managed. Just the very idea of having Big Mac all to herself for an evening, and then hopefully many evenings after that, was enough to have her swoon. "I do feel bad for Sugar Belle though," She thought, as an idea came to her. "Maybe I'll send her a sympathy card and ask her how things are going with her and Party Favor? I'll just have to ask Big Mac for the address of that village."