A new pony. A new life. Will new adventures ensue?
If the Everfree forest was your home since birth, what would it be like to visit a town for the first time, as well as other ponies? With one small catch. Nopony can actually see you. Eclipse was in this exact situation. But there may also be mysterious forces at work in Equestria. A force that may change a certain pony. But for good or for bad is yet to be seen.
Eclipse Starr was just like anypony in Equestria. She had dreams and desires; and a love for most things. She loved exploring and enjoying the fresh air. She enjoyed studying and categorizing plants and animals. Although there are a few things that set her apart from everypony else. For one, she lives in the Everfree forest. She would like to be able to live in the town just outside the forest, a town known as Ponyville. But that is where the second problem arises. She is what is known as an Ethereal pony.
Eclipse discovered this at an early age. She knew that she was different from other ponies, but didn't realize how much so until her first visit into Ponyville. She would run and play in the Everfree forest like any normal young filly would in the sunny fields of Ponyville. Ponies who she watched from afar. Her and her mom had lived with a zebra known as Zecora. Her mom would tell her stories about her father, and why they live in the Everfree forest.
Several years ago, before Eclipse was born, her parents had went on a trip into the Everfree forest to gather some special flowers and herbs, as well as go exploring, seeing as how they had both been risk takers. But they had gotten lost for several days before they came upon Zecora's hut.
Cold, wet, exhausted, and practically half dead, they called out to the structure in hopes that somepony was inside. Luck was on their side, as a strange pony that they had never seen before ran out of the domed structure with a look on her face that showed shock and worry. She scanned the treeline around her hut and saw two ponies stumble into the clearing. A gray stallion with an orange mare on his back. She ran over to them just as the stallion collapsed, and saw just how bad of shape that they were in. Cuts, bruises, and large gashes with black, putrid, coagulated blood covering their legs and bodies, leaking rancid pus.
She somehow carried the two ponies the short distance to her hut and carefully laid them out on two small cots inside. They had tried to speak, tried to say thank you, but she hushed them and soon after they both fell into unconsciousness.
Zecora's first objective was to get the two ponies washed and their wounds cleaned as best as she could. She grabbed several towels and a large bucket of hot water she had been heating next to her large cauldron. She started tending to the mare first, but wanted to get to the stallion as soon as possible. Focusing on the larger wounds first, she cleaned the large gashes, removing the dirt, muck and old blood that was matting down her coat. Washing away any excess grime from the wounds to prevent any further infection from setting in. She had grabbed several bottles of ointment and poured the contents along the mares wounds. The ointment immediately started getting to work on cleaning and disinfecting the mares body as it was absorbed into her bloodstream. She wrapped the wounds in special vines that wrap around limbs and seal off wounds from any outside contaminants. She then quickly moved over to the stallion and began doing the same procedure, removing large shards of wood, rocks, grime, and pus from his large wounds. While cleaning the blood from his gray coat. Using the other bottles on his wounds as well as the same type of vine.
Satisfied with her work, Zecora now felt that she could do a more thorough examination of the two ponies. Looking over the mare, all she could see were minor scrapes and bruises that would heal quickly, but she wouldn't know anymore until they awoke. The mare was an orange unicorn and had a long wavy red mane and tail, with a golden stripe running down the middle of both. She had small petite features, very cute, with an athletic build. She lay lightly breathing on the cot, her body beginning to relax as the ointment worked at clearing out her body. Zecora pulled a blanket over the mare to keep her warm. She then looked over at the stallion, a unicorn as well. He had a strong jaw and features, silver coat with a solid black mane and tail. Very muscular and quite handsome. She pulled a blanket over the stallion as well, hoping that she had gotten to them in time, before any major damage was done.
Zecora had started some soup in preparation for the two ponies awakening. An herbal remedy soup that was blended for a speedy recovery, and to help their bodies fight any illness or disease that they may has contracted. While it slowly boiled in her cauldron, she walked over to a bench to finish working on a new potion she had been creating before these two ponies found their way to her in very unfortunate circumstances.
Several hours had passed before Zecora heard one of the ponies groan and start to stir. She walked over and saw that the orange mare had started to awaken. Zecora sat down on the floor next to her and the orange pony turned her head to look at this strange black and white pony she had never seen before. Zecora smiled at her and it took the mare a few moments to smile back as her mind tried to clear away an almost overwhelming fog.
"Wh-Who are you? Where am I?" the orange mare tried asking, realizing it was too difficult to talk cause of how dry her mouth was. "Do not speak, if your energy you wish to keep. Drink this stew, and you will begin feeling good as new." The strange pony replied to her, in an odd rhyme similar to the foal's books she used to read when she was younger. But with a fog clouding her mind, the thought quickly faded as the dull pain throughout her body began to register. The orange mare decided that this strange pony seemed friendly enough and was possibly her best shot at getting better. Much better than exposed to the elements out in the forest. Seeing as how her ability to move was severely limited and racked her body with pain, also helped her make the decision to stay.
Zecora helped the orange mare lift her head and placed another pillow under her. While she slowly brought the spoon filled with the odd smelling concoction closer to the yellow mares mouth.
Still slightly wary of this strange black and white pony, she wasn't sure if she should drink, but she had an unexplainable feeling that this pony was only out to help her, so she decided to drink. To her amazement, that first spoonful made her ears perk up as she felt energy return to her body and mind. She continued to take several more spoonfuls regardless of the odd taste, felling better and better, but still not well enough to move very much. But much more awake and alert now, her brain beginning to clear her of the almost ever persistent fog. Her ears then suddenly perked up again as she scanned the room with wide eyes. Her expression was one of worry.
"Where is he?" she asked urgently. Her dry throat no longer an issue. "Where is my husband, Silver Storm?!"
Zecora's reply came as a soothing whispered tone, "Shh, do not fret young mare, for the one you seek is right over there."
She motioned towards a cot over to the yellow mares right, up past her head a bit. The yellow mare looked over and smiled as she saw her husband was sleeping soundly.
"Thank you for helping us," she whispered, as the memories of earlier came flooding back to her. "My name is Amber Starr. I don't know if we would even be alive right now if it wasn't for you. We owe you so much, thank you!" Amber said in an excitedly hushed tone so as not to wake her sleeping husband.
Zecora smiled at Amber Starr, "I am glad to help anypony who is in distress. As for me, Zecora you may address." Zecora lightly tilted her head in greeting.
Amber and Zecora talked awhile longer, about what happened and how long they had been at her house. Amber found Zecora's use of rhymes to be very refreshing, and allowed her mind to ignore the pain her body felt. But her thoughts grew more and more worried of her husband as he was still unconscious, laying in the cot next to her. She looked over at him, while still laying in her own cot. She then glanced at Zecora, "Is he going to be alright? He hasn't moved in hours."
Zecora then glanced over at the stallion, hiding a worried expression, and said, "All will be fine, he will find his way out, in time. Sleep is what you require, so get some rest, while more water, I go acquire." She looked back over at the orange pony and smiled.
"Yeah, you are right, just wake me when he begins to get up please?" Amber looked at Zecora with pleading eyes. Zecora smiled and nodded, then turned and started heading out the door. Her thoughts beginning to turn towards the worst as the silver stallion should have awoken by now.
Amber lay still in her cot for awhile, staring at her husband, remembering how he had protected her during their several days lost in the forest. Running from monsters that she thought only existed in dark dreams. She then looked down at herself and started slowly and gently running her hooves over her stomach. One thought in her mind before she fell back into the dark abyss that is sleep, a thought that had been in her mind since waking. "Please be okay."
Several months later, at Zecora's hut, the forest was being startled awake by the screams of a mare in agonizing pain. For hours the forest heard the screams and cries. Then a brief moment of silence, until a baby foal could be heard crying. But that wasn't the only thing that caused activity in the forest. Many creatures and ponies all over Equestria were watching the skies. Waiting to see something that hadn't been seen in decades.
A white Alicorn, who had raised the sun and moon for hundreds of years, stood at the very peak of Canterlot tower. Her two front hooves raised in the air, and a brilliant yellow glow surrounding her long magnificent horn. This day was a special day, and everypony watched and waited. Watching while the moon slowly started blotting out the sun. Getting closer and closer together. Ponies all over Equestria holding their breath while the moon moved the last few inches into place infront of the sun. Then a giant roar and thundering of hooves could be heard and felt all over Equestria as the total solar eclipse took place. An event that only takes place once every several decades. Everypony was celebrating, all of Equestria was. All but three.
As the eclipse reached its apex, the screaming in the Everfree forest stopped and a new life came into existence. As Amber sat in Zecora's hut holding her newborn, she looked out the window into the sky and knew exactly what to name her daughter. Eclipse Starr.
Amber smiled, but that smile faded and turned to a look of shock as her newborn foal started to glow brighter and brighter. This caused Amber and Zecora to squint and cover their eyes until all at once she vanished, and the light from the glow shot out throughout the Everfree forest. Amber and Zecora sat in shock wondering what had just happened looking at the place that her daughter used to be. Amber's eyes beginning to well up with tears thinking that her baby girl was gone until she felt and heard that her baby foal was still there, right where she had been.
She looked down and saw that the blanket still held its shape. Zecora walked over and peered over Amber's shoulder seeing nothing but an empty blanket, but hearing the baby foal cry from inside. Amber still had a look of shock on her face, her mind trying to comprehend what had just happened to her daughter. She then brought her baby girl to her chest and gently rocked her trying to calm her down her motherly instinct taking over. "Shh, shh, shh, it's okay honey, mommy is here, mommy's here. shh, shh."
Princess Celestia felt something that she had not felt in hundreds of years. Her eyes lifted in surprise a bit as the feeling brought her vision towards the Everfree forest. Her eyes scanning out over the vast dark forest that seemed to have no end. She then thought to herself, "another has been born," as she squinted her eyes. Her mind taking on a whole other priority after she finished the eclipse spell.
Zecora walked over to her cauldron gently stirring it, leaving mother to foal. In all her years, Zecora had never seen anything like this. "What could have happened?" She wondered to herself, while slightly squinting her eyes in thought, a serious look on her face. "Only one pony would know, and only to her must we go."
About the time that Zecora was going to say something, her and Amber heard a loud thump outside Zecora's hut. The door to Zecora's hut started to glow yellow as it slowly began to open and none other then Princess Celestia was standing at the entrance. Amber and Zecora, both in shock, somehow were able to blurt out, "Princess Celestia!" as they both bowed down in unison, and Eclipse Starr began to cry again at being moved.
Princess Celestia crouched down and entered the small hut and walked closer to the smaller orange unicorn. Peering down she looked at the blanket Amber was holding. Amber tensed up not sure what to expect from the princess, she had only ever seen from afar. Princess Celestia then smiled and glanced over at amber. "She is beautiful. What is her name?" the princess asked with inquisitive eyes.
Amber's jaw dropped a bit as she stammered. "P-Princess Cel-Celestia, y-you ca-can see h-her? B-but how?" Amber said incredibly nervous. "An-and her n-name i-is E-Ecli-Eclipse Starr. M-m-mine i-is Am-Amber S-Starr. Y-your High-Highness."
Princess Celestia kept smiling. "A beautiful and perfect name. Yes I can see her, my dear pony, And yes, I have seen this before. It is quite rare." Princess Celestia's smile dropped a bit. "I am the one that has caused this. I am so very sorry to have placed such a burden upon you and your daughter. But I do have a spell that will give you the ability to see your daughter." Princess Celestia then smiled again, "You don't need to be nervous around me. In fact, you and your beautiful daughter can visit me at the castle anytime you would like."
Princess Celestia went on to explain how her powerful magic allows her to naturally see Amber's daughter. She also explained how Eclipse is what is known as an Ethereal pony. Ponies that are born at the exact moment that the total solar eclipse reaches it's apex. She continued by saying that every Ethereal pony has a natural magical ability regardless of if they are unicorns, pegasi, or earth ponies.
The princess all of a sudden got a look of wonder across her face. "Where is her father? Shouldn't he be here?" as she scanned the room.
Amber and Zecora both became very heavyhearted and Amber began to cry as she remembered the pony that had stolen her heart so many years ago. Then brokenheartedly said, "Silver Storm passed away a couple of months ago. I...I wish he could have been here today."
Princess Celestia gently wiped away Amber's tears with her muzzle. "Oh my little pony, I understand. I too have experienced the pain of lost ones that I love, it is best to remember all of the wonderful times and memories that they have brought you."
Amber then began telling the princess all about Silver Storm and what had transpired till his passing in Zecora's hut. Tears freely falling down her face.
Zecora had done all she could for Silver, but he had used all his strength just to get them to her hut and had also contracted a disease that none of her potions and remedies could touch. He had awoke for a few moment to tell Amber how much he loved her and had asked Zecora to take care of her, before he fell into unconsciousness again and passed a few hours later.
Zecora had brewed up some tea for all three of them, while they talked and Eclipse lightly suckled on Amber. The princess then took her leave but not before giving Eclipse a light kiss on the head, lighting up her horn as she lightly touched Amber with it, a light yellow glow surrounding her. Telling Amber that if she ever needed anything, she wouldn't hesitate to help.
Amber then smiled down at the daughter she could now see. Eclipse was a pure white unicorn, she had a black mane that had a couple of white stripes in it, and a white tail with a black stripe running through it. She had three freckles next to each bright, big blue eye that looked up at Amber full of love. Amber smiled "Oh Elli, you are so beautiful." A single tear rolling down her cheek, as she pulled her daughter closer to her.
Eclipse lay atop a large rock overlooking a small pond, listening to the small brook gurgle down the hill making a gentle and soothing sound that calmed her. Her eyes closed and her head resting on her hooves, she took pleasure in the fact that such a small beautiful place could be in a place so dark and dangerous. A beam of bright sunlight filtered through the trees and light fog around the pond. Shining down onto a small island in the middle of the pond. A small tree in the middle with multicolored beautiful flowers surrounding it. The sunlight reflecting off the calm water causing the fog to be a ghostly blue, but only adding to the beauty of the area.
Opening her eyes again, Elli looked out over the pond smiling as she enjoyed the view. She always liked to come here, it helped her think and clear her mind. She came here as often as she could, but lately her visits became less and less. She had discovered this place a couple years ago while searching for new plants to put into her book. Whenever she found a new plant or flower she would study it for weeks. Learning its natural habits and growth. She would then pick one using her magic to avoid touching it, having a very unfortunate experience with a particular flower her aunt Zecora called "poison joke".
She had been searching a new area for some plants, flowers, or even a new creature. Most creatures seemed to know that she was there and were not afraid of her and never tried to attack her, as if they knew that she wasn't going to hurt them. It allowed her to study and explore freely for the most part. She did her best to avoid manticores and cockatrice. They seemed to be violent towards anything. Even though she could easily get away, she kept her distance from them but still studied them from afar.
The area she was now at seemed different then the others. Like there was an ever present magic in the air. A magic that felt very old, but seemed to originate from the planet itself. It felt as though it was alive and conscious, but a consciousness similar to that of the old ancient trees that dotted the landscape. Her curiosity getting the better of her, she pressed on. Subconsciously searching for the source of the magic. As if something was guiding her along an invisible path.
She kept walking, her eyes looking left and right, for something she knew she was getting close to. Then she saw it. It appeared as an almost wall of trees with long vines completely closing off the gaps between the trees. She had seen this before, but this one seemed different somehow. She felt that this was the source of the magic she had felt. She slowly crept forwards, her hooves lightly touching the ground to make as little noise as possible.
She got closer to a group of vines and leaned her ear closer to see if she could hear anything. All was silent, more silent than she had ever heard it in the forest. The silence was almost deafening. Leaning her head through the vines, the smooth leaves brushing against her soft coat and mane. Then she saw it. A natural beauty she had never seen before. Her eyes grew wide as she tried to take it all in. The midday sun causing sun shafts to filter down through the trees and light blueish fog that seemed to slowly move almost with a mind of its own. The thin streams of fog slowly flowing this way and that.
Seeming to take notice of her, the fog slowly drifted closer to her and seemed to swirl around her head, and seemed to be almost "looking" at her. Elli dared not move, treating the fog like she would any creature, with a calm and patience that she had learned long ago. Letting the fog drift over her coat and through her mane. She smiled, getting the feeling that the fog was just curious, she slowly stepped into the clearing further. The fog continued to swirl around the rest of her body, exploring her. She could feel the tiny water droplets tickle her coat causing her to smile more.
The fog then turned away from her and drifted back towards the middle of the clearing. Continuing its slow drift in wide circles. Eclipse slowly walked forward. More calm and confident now but still respectful of this seemingly magical fog. As she got closer she saw a beautiful pond with a mirror like surface, and a small brook flowing into it. Somehow not disturbing the surface. She walked up to the edge and saw a small island in the middle right where the shafts of beautiful sunlight shone. A small tree sitting atop it with the most beautiful flowers she had ever seen. From her vantage point the flowers were a rainbow of colors and seemed to have small shining specks of gold floating around them.
She moved to the left and saw that as she moved, the rainbow color of the flowers seemed to flow along the petals. She looked on in amazement and saw the fog drift down, slowly circling the island. Small tendrils of fog reached down and lightly danced across the surface of the pond causing long slow ripples. She climbed atop a large rock that stood next to the pond. Laying down and smiling, she watched the fog dance and play across the surface of the pond. She wasn't sure how long she lay there watching. Minutes? Hours? Time seemed to slow in this magical place.
She felt that she could look on forever, the fog then drifted through the dozens of flowers on the small island. It somehow had picked one of the bright flowers and headed towards her, bringing with it dozens of the small golden specks. The fog drifting closer to Elli, it slowly swirled around her head and lightly tucked the flower behind her large ear. Eclipse gasped in surprise and smiled even bigger as she glanced up and saw the flower just above her right eye.
"Thank you." She said to the fog, causing it to swirl faster as if it were very happy. The golden spots floating around her head. She looked on at the beauty. Staying for several more hours, she saw the sun shafts slowly start to disappear indicating that it was late. Eclipse then stood up realizing what time it was.
"Oh no, oh no, oh no." She said panicked. She hopped down off the rock and turned back to the fog. "Thank you for everything. I will be back soon!" The fog drifted up to her and slowly swirled around her again, following her along to the edge of the clearing as if saying good bye. Eclipse stopped and turned around. The fog gently caressing her then drifting back over to the pond.
She parted the vines and sprinted back to her Aunt Zecora's hut. A place Eclipse had called her home for years. A place she had grown up in, played in, and cried in. Eclipse's thoughts went to what her Aunty Zecora had always told her. "Exploring outside is a must, but to here you will return by dusk."
Elli had never disobeyed her aunt except for only a hoofful of times. She knows that Aunt Zecora loves her, But she can be scary sometimes. She knows that her Aunt Zecora is only looking out for her because the worst creatures of the forest always come out at night.
Eclipse ran as fast as she could back home, darting between trees and over roots with expert precision. Panting heavily, she reached her home, the sun had already set and the air was getting colder. She trotted up to the door to her house and slowly opened it with her magic, knowing full well that she was about to get into trouble. Elli stepped in and lightly called out. "Aunty Zecora, I'm back." She slowly looked around the hut not seeing her aunt anywhere. All she saw was the cauldron boiling like always, and her aunts masks and potions covering the walls. She slowly closed the door as she walked inside. "Aunty Zecora, are you here?" She walked to the back and opened up another door to the two rooms at the back of the hut that they had turned into bedrooms. Seeing no one in either room, she walked back to the main room thinking she may have gotten away with being late.
She then looked up at the door to the hut and her heart sank and her ears dropped as she saw her aunts gaze staring at her, a slight glare in her eyes. Zecora said nothing and just stood there looking at her god daughter, her hoof tapping the ground. Eclipse slowly sank down to the floor. "Aunty Zecora, I am so so sorry that I am late but I have a very good reason. I didn't want to be late but I discovered something new out in the forest. Something so beautiful that I had never seen before."
Zecora looked on at her as Eclipse began recounting her tale. Knowing that Eclipse almost never lied she listened on. Her eyes growing softer, but getting sharper as Elli told her about the magical place and strange fog, and the beautiful flowers. Zecora then saw that Elli had one of them tucked behind her ear. Or at least, where her ear should be. Her eyes grew wider as Elli recounted how she had gotten the flower. Elli removed the flower and Zecora walked over and looked at the flower in Elli's hooves. The rainbow petals shining in the low light and the small golden flecks floating around it.
Zecora's gaze softened. "To you this flower of rainbow belongs, but in a flower bed I think it longs." Zecora grabbed Elli's hoof and slowly stood her up. "This time I can forgive, But next time tell me, so this worry I won't have to relive." Zecora smiled and brought Elli into a hug causing Elli to smile and hug back.
Elli then let go of Zecora, " I am going to put this in my flower bed and hope that it will grow." Elli then ran towards her room and Zecora told her that once she finished, to go get washed up because dinner was about ready.
Elli was carrying the flower with her magic and trotted towards her room. She walked up to her window and opened it with her hoof. She looked down at her flower bed hanging on her window. The flower bed was filled with all sorts or rare flowers that she had collected over the years. She found a spot right in the middle of the garden and put a hole in the dirt with her hoof and placed the flower inside it smiling. The soil was treated with a few special potions that Zecora had given her to help the flowers regrow roots.
She smiled down at the flower thinking about what had happened to her today. She then heard Zecora call to her to get washed up. Elli trotted out just outside the door and washed her hooves and face in a trough of water. The soil washing from her hooves causing them to be invisible again to everyone but Elli. For this fact, Zecora had given Eclipse some bright red hooflets that Elli wore everywhere. It Had been a birthday gift from Zecora a few years back. Elli loved them and it helped Zecora know where she was at. Over the years Zecora had learned to read the hooflets and know how Elli was feeling.
Elli walked back inside all clean again and grabbed a bowl and plate with her magic causing them to float towards her, she walked up to a smaller cauldron Zecora used for dinner and poured herself a bowl of the delicious smelling mushroom soup her aunt had made. She then placed a large amount of the leafy greens and carrots her aunt had collected. Floating them over to the table, she grabbed another plate and bowl and did the same for her aunty Zecora. Elli sat down and thanked her aunt for the food and slowly started eating while her and Zecora talked over dinner, like they did every night. Elli always enjoyed talking to her aunt. She never tired of her aunts use of rhymes.
As their dinner started getting close to finished, Elli stopped eating and looked at her aunt. Zecora looked over at the place that her goddaughter should be but only saw empty space. "What is wrong Elli, have thoughts overtaken your belly?" Zecora asked.
Eclipse's response came slowly. "Aunty Zecora. I was wondering if I could visit Ponyville with you one day. I know that you have told me not to but I am always thinking about it. I want to know what it is like outside of the forest. I would like to donate some of my books to the library too. My room is getting over filled with them and I would like to make room for more. I would also like to talk with other ponies. Please aunty Zecora. I am old enough now."
Zecora looked surprised. Elli had only ever asked a few times but each time Zecora had told her to stay put. Zecora thought about it for a few minutes, then looked towards Elli and smiled. "If it is Ponyville that you wish to see, then doing the dishes you must agree."
Elli looked at her aunt with shock. She had never said yes before. Elli finished the last of her dinner in one giant bite and threw her dishes and Zecora's dishes into the trough outside the door and began washing them like she had never washed dishes before. Zecora still sat at the table with a look of almost annoyance at not being able to finish, but then giggled at Elli as she heard the water splashing outside. She had had no idea that Elli wanted to go so badly. She did agree that it was time for Elli to see the world outside the forest. But it was hard because Zecora had been alone in the forest for so long that she didn't want Elli to leave her. They had become like mother and daughter. But she knew that young ponies grow up and move out on their own and go in their own direction. Maybe it finally was time for her to start learning about the outside world. She just didn't want her to become disappointed or resentful of herself because of the way she was.
Elli walked along the forest path that led to Ponyville. She had decided to forgo the books on this first trip to allow herself to explore a bit. The walk was about an hour long and the whole time Elli was so excited that she almost bounced with every step. It was about midday when she reached the edge of the forest. Seeing the open fields gave Elli pause. She had never ventured any farther then this. All her dreams had now come true. Zecora accompanied her only to the edge of the forest. She had told Elli, that every time she had ventured into ponyville, everything was closed and ponies seemed to all stay inside. Zecora had feared that it was her fault but wanted to think the best of ponies. But just so that Elli could see other ponies Zecora decided to stay near the forest.
Elli was all up for exploring and seeing new things but seeing the open sky and very few trees gave her pause. She had never been outside of the forest and without Zecora accompanying her, she was even more nervous. She gulped and looked back at Zecora. Zecora only smile and said. "Go on child, have fun but don't get too wild." Elli looked back at the open fields took a deep breath and strode forward with as much confidence as she could muster.
Even though it didn't show, Zecora was worried for the young one she had grown so attached to over the years. Zecora knew that Elli had to do things on her own. She couldn't hold her hand her whole life. And Elli was always good at escaping if things became to dangerous.
As Elli strode out into the bright sunlight she had to squint her eyes and put her hoof above her eyes, until they had adjusted. It felt like it took forever for her eyes to adjust to the bight light, but eventually they had. Now able to see without being blinded she looked around at the big open field she stood in. Her whole face beaming with joy as her dream was coming true, "Time to meet some new ponies!" Elli exclaimed out loud. Elli continued walking, the bounce back in her step. One of the first things she noticed was how hot it was, she began to pant and sweat immediately but never lost any of the joy and wonder she felt.
Stopping by a small brook, she leaned down and took a few swallows of the wonderfully cool water. Splashing some over her face. Her mane drooping a bit as it soaked up some of the water. She looked off to her right and saw a wide tree that had windows in it and critters scurrying about. Nopony appeared to be home, but she smiled as she knew that she was getting closer to town. The critters all stopped and looked on in her direction, and seemed to watch her with curious eyes. Their eyes continued to follow her up over the hill until she went over the other side. The critters all stood there not sure what to think.
Elli continued trotting along, her bounce still ever present. As she came up over the hill she then saw it. She saw Ponyville for the first time. In her mind it was as if she had seen Manehatten for the very first time. Everything was so large and there were houses and buildings everywhere. Her eyes grew as wide as they ever had, and she slowly walked forward trying to take it all in. Ponies were walking around everywhere, dozens of them, everypony with big beaming smiles. She kept walking forward in awe.
Elli walked into town and with so many ponies to talk to she didn't know where to start. No pony seemed to notice her yet so she thought that she should introduce herself. But wasn't sure how because she had only ever talked to her mom and Zecora. She saw a pony walking alone down the road. She had a beige coat with a semi curly pink and blue mane and tail. She trotted up to her and simply said "Hi," in as cheery of a voice as she could. The other pony stopped and looked around, knowing for sure that she had heard somepony. Not seeing anypony, she shrugged her shoulders and continued to walk on. Elli was left dumbstruck. Did that pony just ignore her? Elli of course forgetting that she was completely invisible to everypony else from being around only Zecora and her mom for so many years.
She decided that that pony was just a rude bitchpony, so she continued on still bouncing along happily. She came up next to another pony. She was orange and had a long yellow mane and tale with a ribbon tied at the bottom wearing a very nice looking hat. She seemed to be selling apples and seemed very nice, so she figured she would try introducing herself again.
"Fresh apple fritters n' apple pies ev'rypony. Straight from the Apple family farm!" the orange pony said to everypony. Elli smiled as this pony who seemed even nicer.
Again Elli simply said, "Hi."
The orange pony turned saying," Well Howdy there, what can-" not seeing anypony nearby she lightly scratched at her head. "Huh, coulda swore I heard somepony." Elli was left speechless as she finally remembered what her mother had told her so long ago. About what kind of pony she was, And how other ponies couldn't see her. Her excitement had pushed all other thoughts out of her mind until now. She lowered her head and backed away wanting to just curl up and hide realizing how stupid she had been. Thinking that if she made herself known she would be an outcast. She continued to back away not looking where she was going. She then bumped into another pony, knocking her over. "Hey, what was that for!?" exclaimed the mare in a high pitched, and almost squeaky voice.
Ellie jumped and turned around. "Oh by Celestia! I am so sorry!" The other pony stood up and brushed herself off. This pony was solid pink and had a large pink curly mane and tale that looked like cotton candy, and she also smelled like she was made of solid sugar. "Oh that's okay." she said as she started turning towards the other pony's voice. "Accidents hap- What the? I could have swore somepony was just here. Oh well!" The pink pony exclaimed as she bounced off in the other direction. Tears started to well up in Elli's eyes. She then ran towards the edge of town crying her eyes out. She ran back the way she had come, up over the hill and back towards the edge of the forest.
If Elli had turned around she would have seen several looks follow the sound of her crying including the ponies she had tried to meet. She also would have saw that she was making a very noticeable dust cloud while she sprinted out of town. Everypony had looked at each other, not sure what to think about what they just saw.
Zecora heard somepony crying but didn't see anypony so she knew that it was Elli. She then saw the small red hooflets sprinting across the ground and she held out her hooves. Elli saw Zecora and ran to her and wrapped her front legs around her. "Oh aunty Zecora!" she wailed into Zecora's shoulder. "I am so stupid! How could I have forgotten!"
Knowing full well what Elli was talking about, she rubbed her hoof over Elli's back and slowly stroked her mane. "There there Elli, you can always come to your aunty." They stood there for an untold amount of time before Elli's tears finally subsided, Zecora wiped away the last tears from Elli's eyes with her muzzle and looked at her where her face would be. She smiled and asked Elli to tell her what had happened.
Elli began recounting to Zecora what had happened in Ponyville. They both lay down on the grass at the edge of the forest for several minutes.
"I would still like to give those books to the library if that is okay with you aunty. I think that it is important for everyone to know about the forest. I also know that everypony out there isn't a bitchpony." Elli said with a tiny bit of disgust in her voice, when she uttered the last part.
"ECLIPSE STARR! What have I told you about that language! Where did you even learn it?" Zecora's voice losing its wonderful singsong rhythmic tone to it. It caused Elli to shrink back a bit into her hooves.
"Sorry aunty, I won't say it again, I promise!" Realization at what she had just said hitting her about as hard as Zecora's words.
"I better not hear you ever say such words again, or for a month, your exploring will come to an end!" Zecora exclaimed.
Shocked, Elli said again, "I promise aunty, honest!"
Zecora looked back at her and her face softening. "I am very glad. You know that such things are bad."
Elli looked back towards Ponyville. "If it is okay aunty, I would like to donate my books tomorrow. I will do it at night so no one will see me. I will be in and out, promise. And be back before you go to bed."
Zecora thought about this for a minute but before she could finish her thought, Elli chimed in again. "Also, We are running low on blank books and quills. I know that mom always got the books for me, but is it okay if I get some more? I have plenty of bits that mom left me. I will leave them on the counter and a note. I know that it is basically stealing but I need them." Elli had shrunk her head down as low as it could go because she knew what she was asking was wrong, but with her mother gone, she had no way of getting more books.
Zecora's gaze almost bored into Elli, She knew how Zecora felt about her using her power like that. She hated asking but she wasn't sure how else to get books. Zecora was silent for a long time, then, "Elli, You know how I feel, about you doing something so evil. No, the blank books I will get for you, so do not feel so blue. As for your books, be careful that you do not gain unfavorable looks."
Knowing that Zecora meant to not get caught, she got up and hugged her aunt. They then began walking home again, as Elli then told Zecora about the good things from Ponyville.