Trading Riches for Rags

by RarestRarity1779

First published

What ever could happen when a beautiful, rich, MARRIED mare, goes slumming in the big Capitol City of Canterlot?

Fleur De Lis is a beautiful mare, who could deny that? It's no wonder that she has such a reputation with the many modelling agencies around the big city of Canterlot. As most mares will, Fleur couldn't say yes fast enough when a stallion that she had been in a relationship for quite some time dropped to his knees and asked for her hoof in marriage. At first glance, it may seem like the marriage is everything it should be. It's perfect! But keep in mind that's only what's on the outside. It's what happens on the inside that can make or break a pony, that can build and destroy a relationship. Could it be that the model's marriage isn't everything she had always hope it would be? What will happen when a distraught mare finds a stallion who treats her right but is so under (or above?) her social class? We know such a thing exists as a 'Rags to Riches' story with a happy ending, but could it be, could it truly be that such a thing as a 'Riches to Rags' story exists with the same type of ending?

A simple one off, though you the reader(s) have a chance to determine that. To tell you the truth I don't quite know what this is. Continuation, if any, will depend on feedback. Thanks!

Chapter 1

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The beautiful Fleur de Lis breathed a heavy sigh as she walked the streets of Downtown Canterlot. She just felt so lonely recently, and deep in the back of her mind she had a feeling that her new marriage (coming fast on four months) with Fancy was about to be cut short. She had to take a walk, she just had to get some fresh air after the argument with him she had just been through. It had been like the usual morning at Fancy’s mansion, a nice, filling breakfast and some casual conversation coupled with a kiss before work. But this morning, was it so wrong of her to throw a little something extra in? Was it so wrong of her to ask when they may be able to do something together, when he would make time for her? Fancy yelled first, so she yelled back. A constant torrent of yelling, that’s all that her marriage seemed to be.

She sighed once more as she came to the same conclusion that she did every time, “My marriage is falling apart,” she whispered to herself. “Why do I keep letting him do this to me?” she thought. Fancy had cost her so much, but she never wanted to leave him. She thought it best if she just let the marriage run its course, let time iron all the kinks out. It wasn’t as bad when they were dating, but now that they were married, it seemed as though he had turned into a monster. There were so many examples to go by too! Not but a week into the marriage, Fancy had come home drunk after an “important business meeting”, which she strongly suspected to be disloyalty if not some other form of lying. As if that weren’t bad enough, she had lost several modeling jobs while in the marriage, all as a result of her becoming too thin. Fancy didn’t like it when she put on too much weight, and the modeling companies didn’t like it when she lost too much weight. It had even gotten so bad that she considered just giving up modeling and doing something menial like working in a salon, her passion having always been beauty and giving it to others, thought Fancy would never approve of it. He couldn’t bear to be married to a lowly worker, it was simply bad for his image. Their sex even lacked meaning now. That had burnt out three or four weeks into the marriage with those same suspicions of disloyalty on his part. Most of the time he would just finish up with her, take a sip of something from the bar, and go out.

Fleur stopped and noticed a poster on a wall advertising his new clothing line. The poster featured himself wearing a blue suit jacket, a beige undershirt, and a patterned tie along with the typical friendly smile that he wore in public. She shuddered and looked away from the poster as she thought about how he practically lied to the public; he was nothing like he made himself out to be. Her sadness grew to anger as she clenched her teeth and swiped her hoof across the poster, effectively tearing it down. As she watched the poster fly away with the blowing wind, her temperament changed once more, only to self pity and sadness. “This is not what a marriage is supposed to be like,” she thought, “this isn’t what I’ve always dreamed of, I... I’m sorry,” she apologized to the fluttering poster as if it were her own husband which she had struck.

She glanced up at the clock tower and decided that she had better finish her walk. Fancy would be returning home soon and he would come to look for her if she wasn’t home at least fifteen minutes after his arrival. As far as he knew, she was at a photoshoot at a nearby agency right now. She shuddered to think of what the repercussions would be like if she was caught lying to him like this.

There was a roundabout just up the street from her, so she would walk there, turn around, and walk the mile or so back home. As she walked slowly on, her head hung as it seemed to always be now, she didn’t notice the pony come walking out in front of her from a side street. She bumped into him with such force that they were both knocked onto their rumps. “Gosh, I sure am sorry,” she heard a male’s voice with a country drawl say. He reached a hoof down to help her up.

She took it graciously and replied, “Oh, I’m the one who should be apologizing. It was me who ran into you,” she said as she pulled herself up and dusted herself off. She got her first good look at the run-down pony. She knew she had seen him before, and she knew that he wasn’t from here, but she just couldn’t seem to put her hoof on it.

“Gosh, ya’ll sure is pretty,” he said unintellegently, prompting a blush from Fleur. It had been quite some time since she had been sincerely complimented.

“Thank you,” she said and looked away from him. She knew she should be on her way, but there was really no reason to just rudely trot away from somepony who had helped you up. She walked closer to him and began dusting him off. “I truly am sorry,” she apologized once more, “I guess I was just lost in my own thoughts.” She cleared her throat and switched the subject, “I’m sorry, have we met? My name is Fleur de Lis,” she smiled and shook his greasy hoof, frowning as she noticed some of the residue rubbed off on her, “I have a feeling that I’ve seen you somewhere before, though I can’t quite remember where.”

The pony plopped down on his rump, closed one eye, and thought hard. “Hmm,” he said aloud and wiped his foreleg across his muzzle. After a good minute or so of standing there and scratching his head, he replied, “Nope. Can’t say I remember neither. Oh, and I’m Hayseed Turniptruck,” he laughed through his bucked teeth.

Fleur thought a moment. She knew she had heard that name somewhere and she just had to figure out where. She was an inquisitive mare, one of those that wouldn’t stop thinking about a problem until it was solved. She noticed the turnip on his hat, paired it with his name, and soon it hit her. “Hey, I know,” she smiled politely as he stood back up, “You’re that window washing stallion. I think you fell off a piece of equipment in the dining district?” she said.

“Hey, yeah! That’s me,” he reached out to shake her hoof once more. She couldn’t help but giggle as she took it and shook. “What’s so funny?” he cluelessly asked as he began to observe the environment around them.

“You’re very funny,” she said with a gentle smile, “and charming too.” She was the first to notice that they were still holding hoofs. Hayseed made his first smart move and quickly dropped her hoof.

“Why thank ya’,” he said. “Well ma’am, sorry if I hurt you. I guess I’ll let you get on your way,” he said politely began to trot away, still with the mindset that he had caused the collision.

“Oh, wait! Mr. Turniptruck!” she called the strange name out.

“Yesum?” he turned around with a stupid smile on his face.

She trotted up to him, “Here, I want you to have this,” she turned her head around and began to muzzle around in her saddlebag until she eventually found her coin purse, “as a token of my appreciation and apologies.”

“Shucks, it ain’t nothin’ but a thang,” he replied, pushing the levitatiating bits away. “Uhh...” he began, “what’d I do for the ‘preciation’ part again?” he asked.

“You... helped me up like a gentlecolt,” she refreshed his memory and sighed, “there really aren’t many stallions like that left in this city.”

“Oh that? Shoot, I always think yer supposed to help a pretty mare up, ‘specially if you knock her down,” he replied.

“You’re very sweet,” she smiled. “You’re absolutely sure you don’t want this?” she held the bits out to him once more.

“Naw, I always work for my money. I mean, what good’s money if you don’t earn it?” he said. He may have been stupid (to a certain degree anyway), but he certainly had ethics.

“That’s very noble of you,” she smiled and slid the bits back into the purse. “Well, it was nice meeting you again. I suppose I should make my way home though. I’m sorry once more for running into you like that. I really should have been paying attention,” she giggled lightheartedly about the incident, “So... until next time Mr. Turniptruck. Goodbye.” She smiled and began to walk off. “Until next time?” she thought to herself. “Why did I end it like that?” she looked back at the clumsily waving pony. She shook it off and glanced up at the clock tower once more and broke off into a run home once she noticed it was fairly close to the time that Fancy would be returning. As she ran through the crowd, all she could do was hope that she got back in time. She really didn’t want to fight with him, not today.

Chapter 2

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Luckily enough, Fleur had made it home in time, albeit by a hair. She arrived home literally minutes before Fancy walked in the door and had jumped in the shower to make it seem like she was removing the makeup from her "modeling job". And even though she did good, it looked as though she would be spending the night all alone again. It was certainly no new sensation to her, especially over the past few weeks, but it still hurt her all the same. She raised her head up from the pillow upon hearing the front door slam shut and walked over to the window. It was snowing outside and the windows were somewhat foggy, so she used her magic to defog the bedroom window and looked down at the front terrace just in time to see Fancy climb into a chartered carriage. She frowned and watched the carriage roll around the driveway and then out onto the streets.

This was it, this was all she could take. She was tired of the lack of attention, tired of all the fighting, tired of the meaningless sex, tired of the meaningless everything! She truly wanted to work this relationship out. She married him for a reason! He was kind to her, he had treated her exactly how she wanted to be treated before they had married. Before any more anger and distress could run through her, she stopped dead in her tracks. “Maybe it’s... my fault...” she said quietly aloud as she placed her forehoof on the window. How could she have not come to this conclusion sooner? Yes, it had to be her. Before they had married, they had been closer than anything. Fancy used to always make time for her, loved every second he spent with her, kissed and caressed her for no reason at all, and so many other things, all before the marriage. She was weighing him down, she just knew it. But by Celestia, she was going to make this marriage work. She just knew she could fix it if she tried hard enough. She decided that she would wait up all night if she had to, and when he got home, she would talk to him, find out what was wrong, and then love him and just be the best mare she could be.

So that was exactly what she did. The beautiful Fleur de Lis walked downstairs and poured herself a glass of wine to keep her going. Once she downed the glass, she curled up on the sofa by the fireplace and thought about what she could say, what she could do. After thinking for awhile, she wondered if it would help if she looked attractive for him. She walked back upstairs and went into the closet so that she could find the tightest, most attractive nightdress she possibly could. She put her mane down and brushed it to a fine, silky point and then arranged it in the most attractive way she knew possible. Still, it didn’t seem to be enough. Still in front of the mirror, she used her magic to grasp her eyelash curler and brush her big, beautiful eyelashes up to a fine point. Even after all of that, it still didn’t feel like it was enough to impress him. Being one of the most successful businessponies in Canterlot, Fancy was used to attempts to impress him, so she would have to work harder. This time she brought her entire makeup bag into the room and threw on a small dash of blush and applied a thin layer of lipstick and other little things that she thought would help (though she was careful not to exaggerate any of it).

She observed herself in several sensual positions in the mirror. She had to hoof it to herself, she looked great. Any stallion who didn’t turn his head towards that had some kind of serious problem. She smiled at herself in the mirror. It felt like she hadn’t looked this great in a long time. She knew it had only been perhaps a month or two, but it felt more like a few years. She was confident though. “Some initiative,” she thought positively, “yes, that’s it, that’s all it takes sometimes.” She flipped her neatly combed mane and smiled at her reflection.

She was getting awfully cold in the marble encased bedroom, so she walked back downstairs and curled up by the fire. She truly had no idea how long it would take for Fancy to get back home. Sometimes when he left it would take him hours before he got home. She tried not to fret, but she was just worried that the warmth and the alcohol would get to her and that she would fall asleep before he got home. “Think positive,” she told herself, “to succeed you must think positive.”

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Minutes turned to hours, and hours into more hours as poor Fleur was left all alone in the dark house. She would keep the fire alive and stretch out, but when the fear of sleep hit her, she would stand and go take just a tiny sip of wine from a single glass she had poured, though she had another empty glass set out for Fancy. She shuddered as she thought about how her hooftaps were the only signs of life in the monstrously huge mansion. How could anypony want to die alone? Loneliness was an absolutely horrible thing for her.

As the massive oak clock ticked on, Fleur was about to give up hope. Perhaps it was going to be another one of those nights when Fancy didn’t return at all. Maybe he was at an event, or perhaps at a bar or club, or maybe he had even fallen asleep at his office again.

With a bored look on her face, she went back into the dining room and propped herself up on the bar. She shot a bored glance at the wine glass and took another sip of the liquid inside of it, leaving only a tiny puddle inside. She sighed, and with that same bored look on her face, used her magic to circle the glass around on its base. She glanced over at the clock and saw that another hour was about to add itself to the four before it. As the thoughts of giving up swirled around in her head, she casually observed the glare from the fire in the glass. Eventually, her exhaustion overpowered her, and she drained the last of what was in her glass.

But just as she began to walk up the stairs, she heard the front door open and close rather loudly. She had to admit that she was nervous, nervous of her own husband, but it was now or never. Tonight may be the only chance she’d have to save her marriage, or at least lay the foundation for it to be saved. She calmly turned and walked slowly down the stairs. “Hello darling,” she said with a sensual type of tone as she slowly turned around the wall and entered the living room.

“Hello,” he simply replied as he sat down on the sofa; he didn’t even turn to look at her.

Fleur was far from deterred though. “Is there something wrong?” she asked as she walked up behind him and placed her hooves on his back.

“Nothing,” he replied, still not able to look at her.

“Are you sure? Why don’t we talk about it? I’m sure I could make you feel better,” she smiled to herself and began to rub his back. She craned her head down and began to kiss his neck and shoulder, but she was cut short as he gently shoved her head off of him and stood up.

“Fleur, darling, this... this isn’t right,” he turned and said to her, “I feel like such a damned fool for ever having done this to you, but, you need to know. I can’t keep it a secret forever. Sit down, please,” he indicated a spot on the sofa. Once she sat down, Fleur was about to be in for the shock of her life. Fancy sighed heavily and stared into the fire. “I’ve been seeing somepony,” he sighed, “another mare.” The news smacked Fleur like a hard hoof across the face. She couldn’t do anything, drowned in silence either anger or sadness as she was forced to sit there and listen to his tale of how he had met a mare and had been leaving to see her for quite some time. She was younger than Fleur, ready for adventure too. So many things she could give him that Fleur couldn’t, that’s why he saw her.

Once Fancy had told his explanation, the room grew a deathly quiet as Fleur only stared into the fire. “How long?” she asked after a minute or so.

“I don’t re...” Fancy began, but he was cut off.

“How. Long?” she asked once more, only louder and with a choked voice.

“One month after the wedding, nine weeks into it at the most,” he replied. “Listen, darling...” he began, though he was cut off once more.

Fleur stood and shouted angrily through her freely falling tears, “No, you listen! I tried to make this work, I married you for a reason! I can handle the alcoholism, the... the oppression, the threats even, but the lies and the cheating...” she stopped and looked at him, “Part your mane,” she demanded.

“Fleur, please,” he tried and took a step towards her.

“Don’t you dare touch me,” she scowled at him and backed up a little, “part your mane. Part it right now,” she ordered once more.

A lost look on his face, Fancy dropped his head and used his magic to open the front of his mane so that she could get a better look at the base of his horn. Just as she suspected, no ring. “I am so sorr...” he tried one final time.

Fleur only clenched her teeth. “I don’t want to hear it!” her voice boomed throughout the entire mansion, “You know what? Here!” her broken voice returned as she used her magic to remove the ring from her horn and fling it at him. And before she knew it, she found herself to be dangerously close to his face, “You aren’t even half the stallion I used to know,” she reared back and slapped him across the face with her hoof, “It’s over!” she said loudly. “It’s over,” she repeated, “I don’t want to try to fix this anymore.”

With that, she turned away from him and ran across the room and to the foyer. She yanked the door open with her magic and began to run down the driveway towards the bustling city below; she didn’t even glance back at the house, though she was sure she heard Fancy call her name.

As she ran through the city, she began to come up with a plan. She would go to her parents’ house tonight and would see a divorce pony first thing in the morning. She would send for her things, and after that, well, she wasn’t quite sure. She slowed her pace to a casual walk. It was freezing outside and the wind blowing past her wasn’t helping that too much. She had left her purse at home, though she had a few bits on her, so she stopped and got a nice, warm hot cocoa.

She walked down the street while the warm drink levitated close to her. She stopped at a crosswalk as one of the newly installed sign changers signaled for the carriage traffic to move. To her, it was like this was the longest sign in town. She swirled the whip cream in her cocoa around and brought it up to her lips to take a drink. Before she could though, she felt a drop of cold water land atop her head, and then she felt another, and then another.

She looked up to see that the source of the liquid was a window washing platform with none other than that nice Hayseed she had met a few day ago sitting on a sling above it. She felt she should point out that his bucket had a leak in it, seeing as how some ponies who passed through might not have taken too kindly to slipping on the ice that was already forming. “Oh, er, yoo hoo,” she called out politely, “Mr. Turniptruck!” she said.

The redneck pony turned quickly and smiled that same stupid smile as he noticed who it was. “Well howdy there!” he shouted and waved; the platform swiveled dangerously. “How ya’ll doin’?” he asked.

She smiled and giggled a little, “I’m fine Mr. Turniptruck, thank you for asking. I just thought I’d point out that your bucket is leaking. Wouldn’t want somepony to come along and slip on the ice,” she called back up to him pointedly.

Hayseed flopped and rolled around in the loose sling until he got a good view of the bucket. “Well tarnation!” he cursed, “Thank ya’ kindly for pointing that out! I’ll just go and fix er’ right u-” that was all he got out before he took his last clumsy roll and slipped out of the sling. Fleur gasped as he landed hard on the platform and fell right through the wooden base of it and jumped back and put her hoof over her mouth as he landed on the pavement in front of her and the bucket of water came spilling down on top of his head.

“Oh Mr. Turniptruck!” she said and kneeled down to help him, “Are you alright?” she asked and used her magic to lift the bucket off of his head.

“Shoot, ain’t nothin’ but a thang. Ah’ve fallen on my head a hunderd times!” he said as though it were something to be proud of.

“You must learn to be careful,” she scolded him as she used her magic to dry and dust him off. “Good as new,” she said once she had finished and helped him up.

“Gosh, thank ya’ ma’am,” he said, “Ah’ll try to be more careful. Well, guess ah gotta get back to work,” he said and looked up at the destroyed platform with the sling sitting on it.

Fleur glanced back and noticed that the sign had switched red for the carriages and was allowing sidewalk traffic to cross now. She knew she had better be on her way before the signs switched again, but she just couldn’t help wanting to stay and chat with him for a little while; it was nice for her to just have somepony to casually talk to, a friend of sorts. “It’s a bit too late and cold to be washing windows, don’t you think?” she asked.

“Uhh...” the pony replied, apparently about to think very hard about something so simple, “Nope!” he said after a few seconds, “Ah think it’s five thirty in the mornin’. If it ain’t, why am ah at work?” he scratched his head and looked all around until he eventually found the clock tower. After a minute or so of slow, zoned out observation, he breathed a sigh of relief after he discovered it was the correct time for work. “You cold?” he asked her.

“A little, yes,” she admitted and took a sip of her drink. She felt rude all of a sudden. If she was cold, she could only imagine what it was like being all the way up there on that building. “Would you like some of this?” she asked him, “It’s hot cocoa. If you have something I could pour it in, I’m sure it would warm you up while you’re up there.”

“Aw, shoot,” Hayseed replied, “Ah’m used to the cold. It don’t bother me none, I’ll be fine,” he reassured her, “But if you’re cold,” he continued, “here.” He reached back with his muzzle and pulled his long jacket off and draped it over her. It had a stench to it, but it was rather inviting.

She blushed, “That’s very sweet of you,” she said, “but I can’t take this from you. What will you do for warmth? You have no warm drink and now no jacket.” She took the coat off and levitated it towards him.

“Keep it,” he insisted politely, “Ah got a healthy coat for a reason,” he smiled kindly and used his head to nudge it back towards her. “It’s a cheap thang anyhow. Ah can pick up another one later.”

“Listen,” Fleur replied, “thank you.” She kissed him on the cheek. “If you’ll meet me at this address,” she told him the location of her parents’ home, “I’ll gladly give this back to you. You’ve already given it up to me like such a gentlecolt, and it wouldn’t be fair to you if I made you go out and buy a new one.”

Hayseed thought for a moment, “I guess ya’ll right,” he said. “I’ll be sure to do that ma’am...”

She cut him off, smiled and said, “Oh, please call me Fleur.”

“Aight then Miss Fleur,” he resumed, “but it really don’t matter to me as long as ya’ll get home warm.”

She had never been so sincerely acknowledged or cared for like this, not even by Fancy or even all the other stallionfriends she had in the past. It wasn’t the fact that he simply did it, it was the fact that he was sincere with it. “My word,” she said, “How did you come to be such a sweetheart?”

“Gosh,” Hayseed chuckled stupidly, “Ya’lls makin’ me blush.” He’d never had a pretty mare call him ‘sweet’, but then again he’d never really been approached by any mares. Unless one counted that nice Rarity mare, though she seemed to try to keep her distance from him.

“Well, thank you again Mr. Turniptruck...” she began.

He cut her off and said, “Call me Hayseed.” If Fleur didn’t know any better, she’d think that he was trying to flirt with her, and he was doing a pretty exceptional job of it too.

“As you wish Mr. Hayseed,” she corrected herself and smiled, “I’ve er... I’ve had a bit of a rough night, so I should really be going. But, thank you, for everything. You... have no idea how much it means to me to be treated like this.” she smiled.

“Aight then,” he said, “Go on, get out of this here cold,” he smiled, “get home safe.”

“I will,” she smiled and turned, “I look forward to seeing you tomorrow.” She blushed once she realized what she had said. Deep down, though she might not have known it, she really did look forward to seeing him.

“Bye now!” he called to her as she walked away from him and crossed the street. As she walked on, not far from her parents’ home, she thought about how this stranger turned friend, this Hayseed Turniptruck had jumped in to treat her like a princess once more. Something inside of her said that it wouldn’t be the last time either, and the more she thought about it, the more she liked it. On that cold, snowy night, the beautiful Fleur De Lis walked alone once more. Though this time, even after all that had happened, she managed to have a smile on her face, just because of that one, simple thought of that kind, simple stallion a block behind her.

Chapter 3

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“Madam,” Fleur heard a whisper and felt a shake, “madam,” she heard once more and opened her eyes to see one of the maids. “Sir de Lis asked that I bring you this breakfast. We have today fresh eggs, pancakes, warm oats, and a nice cup of coffee.”

Fleur propped herself up against the headboard and eyed the food hungrily. It had been quite some time since she had eaten anything, almost twenty-four hours. “Thank you Rose,” she said politely and smiled at the young mare.

“Can I get you anything else madam?” she asked.

Fleur giggled a little, “No thank you Rose, I think that will be all. You’re doing excellent,” she complemented the smiling maid’s service before she exited the room.

Once she was all alone in the room, her old room with her high school cheerleading photos and all still there, Fleur took a bite of her food and leaned back against the headboard as she tried to gather her thoughts and form a plan. Deep inside of her, she hoped that it had all been a dream. Everything from when she first conceived the idea of trying to impress Fancy, to him having told her that he was unfaithful, and to her having flung the ring and slapped him. Yet she hoped it hadn’t been a dream. She felt free, liberated now. She observed herself in the old desk mirror across the way and thought about how it felt rather good to have that dreadfully heavy ring off. She just felt so confused right now. She felt the best thing she could do after applying for a divorce today would be to get back into modeling and get her life back together. She had quite a vast savings account, a private home which belonged to her and her only, and a popular reputation with the modeling and fashion communities. She was quite an important pony in Canterlot, though she shuddered to think of what her heated separation with Fancy could do to that reputation.

But now wasn’t the right time to think about her career. Right now she just had to think about the task at hoof, and that was getting out of this marriage. She had told herself a week or two ago that she was going to get out of the marriage, she had her doubts, and now this perfect excuse came along. She sighed and poked her eggs as she really thought about and reflected on how that wasn’t healthy. She finally admitted to herself that the marriage hadn’t been healthy, and it seemed like it probably hadn’t since day one. Maybe it just wasn’t meant to be? Maybe her suspicions that Fancy had only dated and married her for his image actually were true? She sighed once more as she thought about how it was so strange how these things worked.

She glanced over at the headboard post and spotted the coat which Hayseed had given her last night and then she remembered how she had promised to give it back to him. She remembered she told him to be here this morning, and the way he was dressed paired with his low intelligence would get him one of two things the minute he knocked on the de Lis door; a hateful run off from one of the staff or her father, or a call to the Canterlot Police. She saw the clock and saw that he would be here soon! She hurried with her food and got out of bed to groom herself and put her favorite dress on, a purple one with a red bow around the midsection, before she walked downstairs. Just in time too! It seemed as though the minute her hoof hit the floor, the mansion’s doorbell rang. It had to be him! But what if it was Fancy? What would she do if it was him? Would she slam the door in his face, or would she collapse into tears, jump to embrace him, and decide that she wanted to give it one more chance? “I’ll get it!” she called.

The doorbell rang once more as she approached the massive oak thing and breathed a sigh of nervousness. There were no windows around the door, so there was no telling who was on the other side of it. She pulled the door open and, to her greatest relief, saw that it was in fact Hayseed. “Howdy there ma...” the stallion cut himself short and only stared at her. She was gorgeous! He had never seen such a beautiful mare.

“Is everything alright?” she asked with concern. She knew he was looking towards her, so she turned her head around and looked behind her. There was nothing there to be looking at.

“Yah look amazing,” the stallion said to her. He cleared his throat in an embarrassed type of way (he had never been too good at keeping his thoughts to himself).

Fleur blushed again. All three times she had run-ins with this pony, he had made her blush. She cleared her throat and said, “Thank you.”

“Forgive mah bein’ so rude,” he apologized, “ah er... ah came hur for mah jacket. This is the right address right?” he asked stupidly.

Fleur giggled and replied, “Yes, it is. Won’t you come in? I’ll just go get it,” she said and stepped aside so that he could enter, and took his hat from his hoof to hang it on the rack. “Wait here,” she smiled to him and walked upstairs to retrieve the jacket.

Hayseed couldn’t help but circle around and around in the wide hallway as he admired the huge mansion. Where he came from, houses didn’t even get anywhere near this big, nor did they ever come this beautiful! Maybe he would call the nice mare some time and offer to clean the windows? On his walk up the driveway, he did notice it looked to be behind a few months (or years) on a decent window wash.

“Here you are Mr. Turniptruck,” Fleur said as she came down the final three steps. She levitated the jacket towards him.

“Thank ya’ kindly,” he said and took the coat from her. After that, as they had the two times before, they found themselves in an awkward position with nothing to say to each other. It was quite strange to the both of them. The nervous Hayseed cleared his throat (he was always nervous around these fancy ponyfolk, especially the females) and said, “”Well ma’am ah guess ah’d better git a goin’ and git out of yer’ mane. Thank ya’ again for returnin’ it to me.” He took his hat off the rack and threw it on his head.

“It’s my pleasure Mr. Turniptruck,” she assured him, “and thank you for letting me borrow it last night. That was a very generous thing of you to do.”

“Shucks, it ain’t nothin’” he said that phrase once more. She used her magic to open the door for him and walked out behind him. It was best if she went ahead and visited the divorce lawyer this early in the morning, that way she’d have less of a chance of running into traffic, or worse yet, running into Fancy. “Ya’ll headed somwhar?” he asked once he noticed that she was following him down the path.

“Yes, indeed I am,” she smiled, “and you?”

“Ah, ah guess ah’m headed off to do nothin’ important,” he chuckled, “You want me to come with ya’?” he asked, “It might be nice to have somepony to talk to,” he pointed out.

“I would be honored,” she smiled, “how very noble of you.”

They walked out of the driveway and a little ways down the street mostly in silence, though after awhile Hayseed asked a question about something that had been bugging him. “Mizz Fleur, if you don’t mind mah askin’, what you dressed up all fancy and purty fer?” he asked.

As they walked slowly by, Fleur observed herself in a shop window that they passed. “If you must know,” she replied, “I’m going to see a pony who can help me out with some troubles I’ve had recently,” she looked down, almost ashamed to be talking about the subject. Somehow though, it just felt good to get it off her chest.

“Oh,” Hayseed replied, “And also, again if ya’ don’t mind mah askin’, why were ya’ll out so late last night. Ya looked tired and ya was all lonely and cold. Walkin’ the streets in the cold early mornin’ hours alone don’t seem like something a fancy, pretty mare like you should be doin’.”

“You are quite right Mr. Turniptruck, it isn’t,” she replied, that feeling of hostility for Fancy returning. “I know it hasn’t been long since we first met, and only a few days since I’ve gotten to know a little more about you, but I just can’t help but feel like you’re somepony I can trust,” she admitted, “Silly, I know.”

“Shoot, that ain’t silly,” he replied with a blush and an embarrassed smile, “I’m flattered ya’ll think that ‘bout me. And yes ma’am, ya’ll can trust me with anythin’. Not like ah got anyone to tell it to,” he chuckled about the serious statement. Fleur felt somewhat bad for him. He really didn’t seem like that kind of pony that would have many friends. She wondered if he had ever been in a relationship before. “But enough ‘bout me. What was you sayin’?” he prompted her to continue on.

“Oh, er right,” she began, “I er...” she hesitated, “I had a fight with my husband last night. He... he cheated on me,” her voice broke slightly, “I had a suspicion that it had been going on for quite some time, but I was never sure, I never saw any solid proof other than his staying out all the time. There are so many other things too, but... but I don’t wish to talk about them,” she looked away from Hayseed, “Last night was the final straw I guess. I’m getting out...officially, so I’m going to see a lawyer to do just that.”

Hayseed only looked at the ground as he walked on, lost in thought. “Gosh,” he replied after awhile, “I’m mighty sorry to hear that. It just ain’t fair. A pretty, kind mare like you deserves somepony who’ll treat her right.” They stopped and Hayseed picked her head up ever so romantically. “And I just know, ya’lls gonna find him someday.” He smiled at her confidently. Perhaps he wasn’t as stupid as he came off to be?

“That’s very sweet,” she choked back tears; she was so very touched. “You’re absolutely right,” his words inspired her, “this is nothing but a block in the road, a block which is easy to get around.”

“That’s the spirit right there,” he said cheerfully.

Ever since his little pep talk with her, for every minute that she would be alone, Fleur decided that she would walk with pride. True, loneliness was a bad thing for her, but there was no guarantee she would be alone for a long time, and deep inside, she already had her sights set on somepony.

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The meet with the lawyer had been a smashing success! A date had been set for the finalization, and Fleur was free. She felt so relieved, so happy of what she had done! She didn’t care what he said, what he presented, she would never go back to Fancy. It was true that some ponies could change, but for some reason, Fleur believed that he would continue to place his own image above all. She didn’t think he was a bad pony, just a sorry one. But that didn’t matter now, she was free! With luster in her steps, she led Hayseed down Sunrise Boulevard towards a modeling company she was always welcome to.

“Yer a model?!” Hayseed asked incredulously once they arrived at the building, her face plastered all over it. Who’d have thought it, him becoming friends with a model? The ponies back home wouldn’t believe this! On the way out of the lawyer’s office, Fleur turned to the stallion, jumped to hug him and had called him her ‘best friend’. It sure was funny how a stranger could turn into a friend almost overnight.

“I most certainly am!” she responded joyously, full of pride. “Hayseed,” she called him by his first name, “would you like to come inside and see what it is models do?” she invited.

“Gosh, that’s sure to be a real humdingin’ good time!” he said. “Ya’ll can count me in!”

Fleur giggled, “Very well then, come along.” She walked inside with Hayseed close behind her.

“Afternoon Miss de Lis,” the security guard by the door smiled and tipped his hat. Fleur passed right by him, but then he saw Hayseed and a frown crossed his face. He stepped out in front of the scruffy looking pony. “Hey buddy, we don’t allow your kind in here. Unless you’re applying for a job, get out-”

“He’s with me Reginald,” Fleur clarified and turned to observe the scene. Poor Hayseed look so frightened.

The security guard looked back at Fleur for a moment and then back to Hayseed with a confused look on his face, but holding a client up for longer than was necessary was a surefire way for him to lose his job, so he backed off of the pony and used his hooves to adjust Hayseed’s collar and jacket. “Very good sir, my apologies,” he said, “Welcome to Canterlot Modeling Incorporated.” He tipped his hat and returned to his post.

“Aw shucks,” Hayseed said as he walked on to join Fleur, “ya’lls only doin’ yer job, and that’s mighty kind of ya’.” He tried tipping his hat and found that he rather liked the fancy gesture.

“So sorry about that darling,” Fleur apologized when he joined her, “I guess I’m just so excited that I forgot to warn you about the guards. Just stick close to me and you’ll be fine.”

“Will do,” Hayseed nodded his head and followed her throughout the neat building. As he had with the de Lis mansion, he was absolutely taken by the beautiful architecture. First he saw the fountain, then his reflection on the smooth tile floor, and then the huge skylight above which seemed to be miles up. Oh what he wouldn’t give to clean that window! He thought it might be a good idea to come back one day and ask that nice security pony if they needed any window washers.

After Fleur gave Hayseed a little tour of the place, she proceeded to go towards her usual studio. “You’re welcome to stay and watch the shoot if you like,” she told him, “but if you don’t, well...” she hesitated, “I know this is a bit sudden, but would you meet me at my home later? Around nine thirty tonight?”

“I sure will stay and watch. I ain’t never seen a photo shoot befer,” he replied and looked all around the dark studio at the cameras, lights, and screen.

“Glad to hear it,” she said and kissed him on the cheek, leaving a big lipstick stain which prompted him to blush, “but I still want you to meet me at my place later,” she winked at him.

“You got it Mizz Fleur,” he said, “Uh... Fer what?” he asked. “Now what in the world did that wink mean?” he thought to himself.

“I want to thank you properly for taking the time out of your day to spend time with me,” she explained, “You really have no idea how much it means to me. Just to have somepony pay attention to me, sincerely, that’s all I want, and I get it with you.” She had already said too much, so before Hayseed could open his mouth to say or ask something, she ran off to get in front of the cameras.

Once the shoot began, Hayseed was absolutely fascinated with it all. He tried to ponder out the hidden meaning in Fleur’s words, but every time the camera flashed and Fleur flipped to one of her stunning or intimate positions, he couldn’t help but forget everything and focus on her. He could even swear that she looked at him a few times, but then again, he was right behind the camera.

“Ya looked great up thar,” Hayseed complimented her as she walked off of the white stage.

“Thank you,” she blushed and retreated into the dressing room. “Do you mind tying my bow?” she asked once she exited and levitated the dress item towards him.

“Ah can give it a shot,” he said and took the bow in his hoof. He wrapped it snugly around her midsection and tried not once, not twice, but three times before he got a decent knot in. It looked absolutely horrid dangling free like that, but she couldn’t be rude to him, and she couldn’t help but hold back a giggle. The clueless country pony was absolutely darling!

“Thank you very much,” she smiled at him, “it looks excellent.” Hayseed walked ahead of her towards the door from which they had come. Fleur stopped him, “No darling, we go out this door,” she pointed to a door with a big exit sign over it, “it’s much faster.” He only smiled and walked to open the door for her while she discreetly used her magic to fix the knot. As expected, Hayseed took no notice of it.

They exited the studio and found themselves in the side alleyway. “Thank you so much for doing all of this with me today. I couldn’t ask for a better friend,” she smiled at him. “I look forward to seeing you later. Remember Hayseed, nine thirty,” she smiled at him and kissed him on the cheek once more. “I’ve got to go!” she shouted and began to trot off, “but I’ll be waiting.”

It had happened to him again, Hayseed Turniptruck left standing there with a blush on his face, a lipstick imprint on his cheek, and a deep admiration for that white mare that had asked him to come meet her. He might have been stupid, but he knew how loved work. Deep inside of his heart, he had a feeling that he was falling in love with this mare. But he also knew how society worked. There were ponies with money, fame, and power, ponies like the beautiful Fleur de Lis, and then there were those ponies that were just menial workers at the bottom of the social ladder with little chance of advancing, just like himself. He frowned and observed his scruffy self in a broken mirror which was leaned next to a dumpster in the dark alleyway.

He walked out of the alleyway and tried to gather his thoughts. He sighed as he thought about how bad he wanted her, but was not allowed to have her. It just wasn’t meant to be. Who had ever heard of a mare like that going for a stallion like him? She was smart and beautiful and rich, and he was dumb, poor, and unattractive. But could he just give up? Was it the right thing to do on his part, to just let her slip through his hooves like that? All of a sudden, he was hit with a sense of determination. He thought about how she had treated him all the times she had seen him. She laughed with him, not at him, she smiled at him, she was nice to him, she was patient with his blunders, she listened to him, and now he was sure more than ever that she had made eyes at him a few times, so who was he to just let her get away from him like that when he was this close? He was a fool, that’s what, no better than that stallion who had let go of her. It all had to count for something.

He didn’t need to think about it anymore, he was going to do it. Tonight, when he met her, he would ask her out on a date. A real one. He would take some of his bits and take her to a real nice restaurant or to one of those new projected and expensive to enter films. He had a suit at home, an old one which had lost some of its luster over the years of sitting in the closet, that had been given to him by his family in Ponyville when he first moved to the city. It wasn’t fancy like the one the stallion that passed him was wearing, but he figured it would do. He would go to a regular customer’s barber shop and take advantage of the free services he was given and get his mane groomed neatly and his face prepped. He had a feeling that she would be one hard mare to impress, but he didn’t care. All that mattered was that he wanted to go through it. He had never felt that way about a mare before. Then again, never had he had much time for relationships, and nor was he ever popular with the fillies. But maybe that would all change tonight.

He had a plan formed and he felt confident. As he trotted on, he couldn’t help but let a smile cross his face and his trot turn into more of a skip. Tonight was the night he went after the mare he had fallen in love with. Everypony had a special somepony after all, and all you had to do to find her was to look.

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When Fleur returned home later that day, she observed that her father was still polishing his knife set and reading the paper. She couldn’t keep anything secret from her parents, especially her father. She was his little filly. When she had arrived at their home the previous night and had told them of the night’s events, she remembered their reactions as she walked upstairs and began sorting through her closet of old clothes for the best thing she had. Her mother dropped her drink, clenched her teeth, and rambled on about how she knew Fancy was no good. Her father, on the other hoof, had a more hostile reaction. He quietly drained his shot glass with one sip, slammed it down on the table and rang the bell for the butler who quickly came. “Fetch my hunting bow and my walking shoes,” he had said. “No ‘Pants’ is going to mess with the de Lis family!”

The servicepony did as he was told, though Fleur had used her magic to wrench the expensive contraption from him and set it on the hearth. “Oh no you don’t,” she had said to him, “we’re going to do this the legal way.”

Her father only mumbled under his breath and took his seat once more. He wasn’t going to kill him, just ‘shoot his leg or something’ as he had put it. She wouldn’t have it though. She hid the military grade thing somewhere, but upon coming downstairs earlier to give Hayseed his jacket, saw that he had found it and had taken to his usual hobby of tinkering and cleaning his collection of weapons.

She couldn’t help but giggle at the mental scene as she walked into her room and entered her closet to search through her old collection for the most beautiful dress that she could find. She hummed a gentle tune to herself as she flipped through gown after gown and eventually picked on out, a pink one, an old favorite of hers. As she slid it on, she could hardly believe that she still fit in it. It was sure to impress him, sure to impress that stallion that had made so much time for her. She knew it hadn’t even been twenty-four hours, and anypony else, any other mare would have been in an unstable state or would have wanted to wait, but she just couldn’t say no to what was in front of her. She was strong and it was what she wanted. This stallion, this Hayseed Turniptruck, treated her like a mare, not like an object. That was all she wanted, that was all she had ever wanted.

She sat down in front of the mirror to comb her mane with that gentle tune still humming in her throat. All was good for a moment, but then she hit the tenth stroke of her mane and stopped dead in her tracks. Suddenly, it hit her. She instantly realized that maybe this wasn’t meant to be either. She stared at her big beautiful purple eyes in the mirror and continued to brush as all these negative thoughts rushed through her mind. He was so much lower than she was. “What will happen to my career? Would some of my friends leave me? What will mother and father think?” she tried to ask herself and answer all of these questions and more at once. She finished brushing her mane and put the comb down. It didn’t matter, she didn’t care about what they thought, she didn’t care how her career turned out. She had had a terrible relationship life in the past, and this breakup with Fancy just made things worse. She liked being treated nice, and so what if the pony who treated her like this with such sincerity wasn’t anything more than a lowly worker from out of town? It didn’t matter, it should never matter when love is concerned. She was going to try, and by Celestia, she was going to succeed.

When she finally finished with all of her grooming, she smiled at herself. She looked nearly like she had the previous night when she had tried to impress Fancy. She looked beautiful and full of life. It was close to an hour before the time in which Fleur had told him to meet her, so she walked downstairs and curled up by the fire all alone in the living room. She wished she had a stallion to cuddle up there with her. She laid there on the sofa, careful not to wrinkle her dress, and closed her eyes. She couldn’t help but imagine that charming Hayseed walking slowly up to her, kissing her on the forehead, and laying down beside her. The scene brought a smile to her face as it played out in her head. She just knew that he was every bit as sweet as he was in this vision.

She jumped up though when she felt a hoof touch her shoulder and blushed when she saw who it was. It was her mother, she was in her nightrobe and had a tired look in her eye. “Fleur darling,” she said, “you’re up awfully late. Is everything thing alright?” And you’re all dressed up too, what’s the occasion?”

Fleur was a bit embarrassed. Her goal was to keep the meet as secret as she possibly could, but at the same time, she just couldn’t lie to her aging mother. “I...I’m meeting somepony,” she admitted with some hesitation.

“Hm?!” her mother mumbled through a sip of water. She started coughing. “A stallion?” she demanded after she finished her coughing fit. Fleur only nodded her head. She gasped, “It’s not that good for nothing ex husband of your’s is it? I can’t say I agree with you, but I shall allow it. Your father is joining you though. Francois!” she called her husband’s name, “Francois!” she called louder.

“Shh! Shh!” Fleur quieted her mother, “It’s nothing like that mama, I swear!” she whispered. “It is a stallion,” she explained, “but he’s only a friend. We met earlier and remembered each other from high school,” she lied; it was the only way to not look suspicious, “and he said he would like to take me out tonight so that we could get reacquainted.” Her mother eyed her suspiciously, “Mama, I swear,” she reassured her, “Please don’t wake father. You know how he is.”

That suspicious look still in her eye, her mother thought a moment and said, “Very well Fleur. You’re my little filly and I can’t say no to you,” she smiled, “but please, be careful. It’s awfully cold outside, so make sure that you bundle up.”

“Yes mother,” Fleur agreed, relieved that she had thrown her mother off.

“Oh, and darling,” her mother poked her head back into the room with a cocky smile on her face, “Go get him,” she winked at Fleur and then disappeared back behind the wall. Fleur listened to her hoofsteps as they went up the stairs and across the second floor. She breathed a sigh of relief and sat back down on the sofa. She stared into the fire and began to think about what all she could do to make him feel special. It was obvious that the stallion never had much attention, maybe never any attention from a mare. She decided she would have to ease into it, start off casual and then just give it her all, make that stallion feel like he’d never felt before.

The doorbell rang and she jumped up. It had to be him, she knew it was him. She smoothed her dress out and walked briskly into the hall, though she tried very hard to not make too much noise. Her parents just couldn’t know about Hayseed and her love for him, not now, not just yet. They wouldn’t understand her position.

She opened the door and was absolutely blindsided by what she saw. It was Hayseed alright, but he looked like such an important and classy business stallion of some kind. His mane was combed neatly back, his moustache was trimmed completely off, his freckles and bits of acne were treated (magically, no doubt), and his bucked teeth were corrected (Fleur could tell magically as well) and pearly white, he looked stunning. “How... I mean, Hello Miss de Lis,” he said with a nervous, though smooth, suave, and dreamy new tone.

“Hello Mr. Turniptruck,” she politely said and stepped outside. She closed the door behind her.

Hayseed cleared his throat nervously and came right out with it, “Miss, Fleur, I was wondering if you would like to maybe...”

Before he could get another word out, Fleur reared up on her hind legs, wrapped her forelegs around his neck, and gave him a passioate kiss. Forget her previous intentions to just ease into it, this was the way to do it.

Their eyes closed and lips locked, it was total, forbidden bliss. She broke the kiss, only for a second to say, “Yes. Yes I will,” and then she planted her lips firmly back on his. Seconds turned into minutes and the snow began to fall as the ritzy Fleur de Lis and the underprivileged Hayseed Turniptruck kissed and cuddled passionately. She broke the kiss and stayed there locked in a hug with him. “This... this is insane,” she admitted with a hearty tone.

“I know,” he said, “it is. So... You had the same thoughts I did?”

Fleur giggled slightly, “Yes, it seems I most certainly did,” she reassured him, still hugged closely into him. “I just met you, but...but...” she just couldn’t get the words out fast enough, “I never want to let go of you.” She began to cry a little bit. The passion for this stallion that hit her was just so powerful that she couldn’t handle it. Did it make any sense that she loved him like this, like she had known him her whole life? No, it didn’t, but she didn’t care. She loved him!

“Don’t cry,” he said gently, “I’ll still be here when you let go.”

She hugged him tighter. “I know you will,” she said, “I know you will, and I never want you to leave.”

“I never will,” he said. “I promise.”

Chapter 4

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A one month anniversary was close for the newfound relationship with Fleur and Hayseed. The divorce with Fancy had been finalized, albeit in a very public manner. The relationship was still very secretive with Fleur sneaking out of her house in the dead of night and meeting Hayseed on an abandoned street, down an alleyway even, anywhere they could find that they could be alone and love each other without the scrutiny of the media. Since day one, Fleur knew that it couldn’t be kept secret forever, especially if she did want to have an actual marriage with him, but as the days progressed on, Hayseed came to that realization too. At some point or another, the world had to know about their relationship.

“Hello darling,” she said to him as she sat down across from him at a table in front of a cafè.

“Hey sugarcube,” Hayseed replied with a smile. She leaned across the table and kissed him.

“I see you’re wearing your new suit,” she noticed, “how do you like it? It’s from one of the finest names available.”

Hayseed looked down at the thing, “I love it Fleur, but, well...” he hesitated.

“What is it darling?” she asked with concern.

“It’s just that... well...” he didn’t quite know how to put it, “You don’t have to give me all of these nice things to keep me around you.” He knew why she bought him all sorts of things. “And it don’t make feel any better seeing as how I feel I’m not doing anything to pay you back. I’m not that kind of pony, heck, I’m not even the suit kind” he looked into her eyes, “I love you because I love you, not because you’ve got all this money.”

“That’s very sweet,” she replied softly, “I’m so sorry for making you feel this way. I just don’t want to lose you, I can’t... I don’t think I can go through it again,” she hung her head.

He placed his hoof gently atop her’s and said, “You’ll never lose me. I’m here with you through thick and thin.”

“Oh, come here,” she said and leaned across the table for a kiss. Hayseed joined her and the kiss was just as passionate as every other kiss was. “I love you so much,” she said.

“I love you too,” Hayseed replied softly.

More and more ponies were beginning to come down this side street in order to get away from the rush hour traffic, so Fleur and Hayseed decided to go ahead and leave before they were discovered, Fleur by the media, Hayseed by one of his window washing customers.

They walked on, mostly in silence, and enjoyed the rare day of sunshine that wedged itself into this winter. They were right beside an alleyway so Fleur bit her lip and prepared to do something she had wanted to do. She popped down the alleyway and used her magic to whip Hayseed inside of it with her. She was ready to take the relationship further, she was ready to take it up two notches.

“Hey, hey, what the-” Hayseed tried to ask, but he was cut short as Fleur planted her lips on his. She tongue kissed him. Hayseed had never experienced anything like this, nor had he ever thought he would experience it, never in his wildest dreams. He brought his foreleg up and wrapped it around her neck, keeping her pinned against him.

“This is so naughty,” she said with a giggle. Hayseed gave her adventure, he made her feel like no other stallion before him. She didn’t give him a chance to respond, she went back to kissing him so passionately and sensually. Hayseed’s eyes were wide and he had a huge blush on his face. Fleur stopped kissing his lips before the saliva that was dripping from their tongues flew all over her and hugged in to him. She started suckling his neck. She stopped for a moment and said, “I’ve got something planned for you later,” she said sensually, “There’s a hotel in downtown Canterlot, the Celestial Garden, meet me there,” she ordered.

“You can count on it,” he said as she backed off of him.

Fleur began to exit the alleyway, but just before she reached the street said, “Oh, and darling,” she turned only her upper body in an attempt to make her rump look extra firm.

“Er...Yesum?” Hayseed’s country accent returned as he ogled.

Fleur suppressed a giggle, “Wear whatever you want. I want you to be yourself.” She turned and quickly kissed his cheek. “Look out for a message later with a room number and key,” she winked and left the alleyway rather briskly.

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They had sex for the first time that night. It was a beautiful, bonding moment for them. Almost an hour had passed and they still continued to lay in the bed and cuddle. The relationship was strong before, but it never felt stronger. Unlike the meaningless sex she had previously had with Fancy, there was meaning in this, and she loved it. Everything just seemed so right in this relationship.

She kissed his cheek and then laid her head down on his chest. “That was amazing,” she complimented him and ran her hoof down his chest.

Hayseed blushed. He didn’t think he had done that well, it was his first time after all. “Thank you kindly,” he said.

Fleur giggled, “You’re very welcome,” she said. They laid there in silence for a few more minutes and listened only to the ticking sound of the clock. She leaned her head up and kissed him on the chin. “Race you to the shower?” she smiled and winked at him.

Hayseed smiled too, and caught on quickly. He threw the sheets off of himself and dashed for the bathroom. Fleur cheated him though and used her magic to teleport to the bathroom door. When she appeared, Hayseed threw on his brakes a little too late. When he stopped, his lips were locked to Fleur’s.

“Did you do that on purpose?” he asked playfully.

“Maybe,” she said with a wink and a cute smile. “Now come on, let’s get you cleaned up,” she said and walked forward into the shower. She turned on the water.

Hayseed blushed at the whole sight as it unfolded before him. A mare, a beautiful one, his very own marefriend, asking him to get into the shower with her. He continued to look on as she prepared the bath. If he thought she was beautiful now, he shuddered to think of what she looked like wet. “Are you coming?” she asked and hopped the small tubside into the running water. “Come along now, don’t be shy,” she gently ushered him to her. Hayseed gulped and stepped forward timidly. He had slept with her sure, but there was something about getting into the shower with an inviting mare that was especially naughty to him. “Something wrong darling?” she asked him when he finally joined her.

“,” he replied with a shaky voice, “I just ain’t never been in the shower with another pony before, ‘specially a mare.”

“Oh,” she smiled, “is that all? You’re so cute,” she kissed him on the cheek. “Oh, and I have a feeling that we can fix that,” she giggled sensually and rubbed up against him and then kissed him on the mouth.

And so through working together, the two of them cured Hayseed’s timidity towards couple’s showers, albeit through an ‘explicit’ form of cure, and to think, it had only been a little more than an hour.

Once they were all cleaned up, they prepared to leave, Hayseed first, and then Fleur after an hour or so. The media was swarming this place (all sorts of famous ponies frequented the expensive hotel) and it would look awfully suspicious if Canterlot’s number one voted female model was seen walking out of the place freshly showered and hugging close to a scruffy looking stallion who was also freshly showered (as if a pony like Hayseed didn’t look out of place enough).

As she walked towards her home, Fleur thought about how she would tell her parents. They were ponies of great refinement and reputation. Why, the de Lis family had been in Canterlot for ages. Not only was the de Lis family one with models, it was one with heads of state, members of the royal courts, and powerful heads of powerful organizations. As it were, the de Lis family had not one negative mark against its flawless name. Fleur wasn’t about to be the one to lay the foundation for her family’s reputations demise. That all it was about in this game of wealth and power, reputation. But did it really matter as long as she was happy? There were so many questions she had to ask herself as she diverted her path and walked towards her parent’s home that evening.

Little did she know, on the completely opposite side of town, Hayseed was facing a similar dilemma as he headed towards the train station. He stopped in line at the ticket booth and pulled the ring out of his sweatshirt pocket. It was a beautiful thing, solid gold with the most beautiful diamond atop it. It had cost him nearly all of his life savings. He had wanted to propose to her when they met at the hotel, but he had no idea that they were going to do what they had done, not to mention that ever since he had purchased the ring, he had one final task riding in the back of his mind. He just couldn’t ask her to be his bride before doing it. He must return to Ponyville and tell his family and friends that he would not be returning, he was to marry Fleur de Lis and stay in the city with her.

He faced a problem though. How would he break it to them? He placed himself in their shoes and imagined what it would feel like if your son or best friend just told you that you would never see him again. It hurt him just to think about it. He had always been tight with his family and the few friends he had back in the tiny Ponyville, but just like that, he would be swept away from them by the tide of love for this mare. Would they hate him, or would they respect his decision? He had to get this sorted out before he asked for her hoof. As he boarded the train, he had no idea that way across the bustling city, Fleur was beginning to drop a bombshell on her parents.

“Mother, Father,” Fleur began slowly, quietly, her voice echoed throughout the dining room, “I... have something to tell you.”

“What is it pumpkin?” her father asked and took a sip of his water.

“I...I...” she hesitated, very nervous, “I’ve been having a secret relationship with somepony,” she finally admitted. Her parents looked at each other for a few moments and then looked at their daughter. A secret relationship, how could she? It was absolutely scandalous! “I know what you’re thinking,” she continued, “but I did it for me, for you, for our image. I wasn’t sure if you were ready to know about him.”

“But why ever would you keep him secret?” her mother asked.

“Well... that’s just it...” Fleur looked down, “He... he isn’t ‘one of us’.”

“What do you mean by that?” they asked almost simultaneously.

“You know, he’s not an important pony, he’s not wealthy at all. He isn’t of our class. As a matter of fact, he... he’s a window washer.”

Her father started choking on his food and her mother looked at the table with a look of disbelief on her face. “What?!” Her father stood and shouted angrily. His magic flared violently and the two large wooden doors of the dining room slammed shut one after the other, which signaled that no staff ponies were to enter. “Fleur de Lis!” he began to scold her, “I can not believe the words that are coming out of your mouth. What were, no, what are you thinking?! Have you any idea what this could do to us, to de Lis Enterprises? And you! What do you think it could do to your reputation as a model?! Of all the selfish-”

“Now wait just a minute!” Fleur shot up out of her seat and stared him dead in the eye, “I love him! How dare you stand there and tell me that I’m foolish and selfish for loving somepony who treats me right? He respects me, he makes time for me, he does all of these things that no stallion I’ve ever been in a relationship before has. And let me ask you a question father, of all the bad relationships I’ve been through, of all the crying and arguments, have any of those ever been caused by a pony like him?” He opened his mouth to speak, but she cut him off swiftly. “No! Because I’ve never been with somepony like him! Should it matter if he has less money than we do?” He tried to get a word in once more, only to be cut off again. “If you don’t like it, don’t come to the wedding. Yes, that’s right, I’m going to ask him to marry me. If you don’t like it, you stay away,” her tone was harsh, but then something changed, “I guess my happiness just isn’t important to you, and I guess it never has been. I knew you wouldn’t understand,” her voice broke and she sat back down and wept, her head cradled in her forelegs.

“Oh, now look what you’ve done!” her mother shouted and jumped out of her seat to go comfort the crying mare.

Her father walked away from the window and took his seat. “Fine,” he said after some minutes of thought.

“W...what?” Fleur looked up.

“You’re right,” he said, “and I was wrong. That was a very foolish thing of me to do. I...I suppose I just never looked at it that way,” he stared at the table. Fleur had never heard him have such a docile tone. He continued on with a sigh, “But you’re right, it shouldn’t matter, it wasn’t fair for me to judge like that.” He hesitated a moment, lost in thought, as he leaned back in his chair, placed his front hooves together, and eyed the painting on the wall of him, his wife, and the toddler Fleur that was painted many years ago. “What is this stallion’s name?” he asked, his eyes still locked on the painting.

Fleur sniffled as her mother dried her eyes, “Hayseed, Hayseed Turniptruck of Ponyville” she told him.

He sighed, and blinked at the painting, “Fleur... my baby Fleur,” he said slowly, as if he was talking to the little filly in the painting, “If it is what you want and your heart truly agrees with your head, then... then you both have my blessing,” he stopped looking at the photo and looked over at Fleur.

Fleur smiled wide, “Oh daddy!” she said as she jumped out of her chair and ran across the room to embrace him. Her hooves wrapped tightly around his neck, she said, “Thank you so much!” and hugged him tighter.

“You’re welcome princess,” he said gently as she backed off of him. “And thank you,” he said, “thank you for teaching me a very important lesson. I love you,” he said.

“I love you too,” she said and affectionately cuddled against him like she used to as a young filly, “I...I’m sorry I behaved like tha-” she began.

He held up his hoof. “Do not apologize,” he said, “it is I who should be apologizing. I had no right to do that.”

She smiled and asked if she could stay the night, she would be sure to introduce them to him soon. “You’re always welcome in our home,” her mother said, “and so will your new groom be. You of all ponies should know that.” Her father nodded in agreement.

As Fleur walked up the stairs, a yawn escaping her mouth, she thought about how she could barely wait to get to bed. All of the day’s adventures had tired her out, and the argument downstairs only fueled her exhaustion. She had never frequently fought with her father, even through her teenage years, she was his daughter, and she always realized that was something that would never change. Maybe, just maybe, when she asked Hayseed to marry her, he would agree, and he would be her husband. Inside, she already knew that that too would be something that would never change.

Chapter 5

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Around six weeks had passed since Fleur had introduced Hayseed to her parents. They seemed to have taken a liking to him and were rather taken with his charm and they way he treated their daughter, though, as he always had, her father insisted on bombarding him with questions, some of which he was too unintelligent to answer. But even throughout those weeks, Fleur just couldn’t bring herself to ask him to marry her. She was afraid. Every time she tried, those memories of her bad marriage with Fancy returned to haunt her. He had treated her right too, but when they married it was nothing but a downhill run full of pain and misery. What if this marriage with Hayseed isn’t any different? She just couldn’t bear the pain again.

She stopped and clenched her teeth. She had to lean against a wall, it hurt so bad. She had been having these cramps, coupled with headaches and a loss of energy for the past week or two. She had even turned down three modeling jobs a few days ago simply because she didn’t feel like going to them. She woke up this morning and decided that she had had enough. She was going to see her doctor and get to the bottom of it all. She could barely even take a few steps before she started to hurt again.

After some minutes of slow walking, she eventually found herself at the office. “Fleur, darling, you don’t look so good,” the familiar receptionist said to her, “Just sign this and I’ll get you right through to the doctor.”

“Thank you,” Fleur simply said and used her magic to jot down her name on the form. She had been coming to this doctor ever since birth, and they had never asked her to sign her name before. Why did she have to sign her name now? It rather annoyed her, but as she sat in the waiting room, her temperament changed.

Fleur waited for a few moments and was eventually allowed back to the doctor. The kindly old mare greeted her and asked what the problem was. Fleur described her symptoms to the doctor. The old mare cupped her muzzle and thought for a moment, “Hm,” she said, “I know!” she shouted. Fleur jumped from the sudden outburst. “Fleur de Lis, you lucky mare. I’m so happy for you! Why I thought I’d never see the day. Oh, but I can’t be too sure without running some tests! Come, come now,” she ushered Fleur into a back testing room. And after what seemed like hours of tests, the old family doctor delivered some very unexpected news to Fleur.

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Hayseed waited for Fleur in his tiny little apartment and stared at the ring. He chuckled as he reflected on how his friends and family had reacted. They didn’t believe him at first, but when he showed them the ring, that changed everything. “Ah’m a happy fer ya partner!” he remembered one of his friends had shouted as he boarded the train all those weeks ago, “Don’t ya’ll forget to invite us to that weddin’ now, ya know how ma loves a good un’,” his brother had called to him after spitting on the ground.

That was just it though, he wasn’t sure if there was going to be a wedding. As the weeks passed on, Hayseed just couldn’t bring himself to ask her, though he had every chance to available to him in the book. He would go on a date with her, would have the perfect chance, would go to present the ring to her, but right before he could take it out of his pocket, fear would strike him and that old familiar question of, “What if she says no?” would ring out so clear he could practically hear himself saying it.

But he truly loved her. He didn’t want to lose her. She was the best thing that had ever happened to him. If he didn’t make a move on her, would she get bored with him and leave him? That was what he feared most. She was an amazing mare, and he just knew that she could do so much better than him. He knew he couldn’t put off the proposal for any longer. If he truly did love her, then he would ask her tonight. “I ain’t nothing but a coward if I don’t,” he thought to himself as he looked at a picture of her that she had given him. “She’s so beautiful,” he whispered aloud and gently touched the photo with his hoof. That photo was all he needed. All of a sudden, he knew she would say yes. He looked into her beautiful eyes and knew that she had given that photo to him, and him only, and that she had a heart for him, and only him. He looked at the clock, she would there soon. Soon, he would be the fiancè to his beautiful and wonderful marefriend, soon, she would be more than just a marefriend.

He was in his tenth round of practice when a knock sounded at the door. He shot up and dashed for the door. When he opened it, Fleur jumped at him and wrapped her hooves around him tightly. “Oh Hayseed!” she said in tears of happiness, “I have great news!”

“So do I,” he said, the nervousness starting to pour over him.

Fleur backed off of him and used her magic to close the door. “Do tell me first,” she said, still with an excited tone.

“I... I was kinda hoping you’d tell me first,” he said.

“Very well,” she said, “Hayseed, I’m pregnant!”

“What?!” he asked impatiently, wanting to know more.

“Yes!” she said, “That’s where all of these cramps and headaches were coming from! Oh isn’t it wonderful Hayseed?!” she jumped onto him once more.

Hayseed was dumbstruck by the news. Fleur backed away from him, and he dropped to his knees in reply. He pulled the ring out and asked, “Will you be my mare?” He flipped the lid open to reveal the most beautiful ring Fleur had ever seen. This ring was no piece of jewelry, it meant something to her.

She gasped, her tears of joy became more rapid, “Yes! Yes!” she exclaimed. Hayseed stood and placed the ring on her horn. She hugged him tightly once more. “I’ve always been your mare,” she whispered into his ear, “I always will be. I love you so much.”

“I love you too,” he said. He stared at her abdomen for a moment, but then she felt him slide his head down to her abdomen, “and I love you too,” she heard him whisper to the unborn creature inside of her.

All of a sudden, Hayseed started to cry as well. “What’s the matter?” she asked him gently. They were still locked in an embrace.

“These here are tears of joy,” he said, still looking at her stomach, “I ain’t never been a father or a husband before. And... and I can barely wait to start.” And as the sun disappeared, and the moon rose high in the night sky, Hayseed, Fleur, and their unborn colt laid in the bed and cuddled with each other, a family at last.