Spacegirl - Chapter 1
Scootaloo awoke, the fresh morning lifting her out of her bed in Ponyville. She sighed softly, a very tiny wind in a high place. Insignificant.
That word plagued her. It came up in myriad ways. Lesser, nobody, the worst was worthless. That label stuck to her like burdock in her fetlocks, driving her to buck it off. In late middle school she’d taken up the art of practical drafting and became interested in architecture. Without her old plan in life, making new ones for others felt good.
Plans and drawings and half-done schemes papered the walls. Pictures of houses, street lamps, toys and steampunk clocks sat drafted on the white-on-blue-paper in the sunlight. They’d started as a hobby when she was a yearling, but the hobby turned into an asset, an asset into a career as a vital part of city planning for the Mayor of Manehatten.
… But a desk and a drafting table weren’t high winds and adventure, and not nearly the life a Pegasus would hope for.
Her heart sank low in her chest. Her eyes watered softly. There was no mistaking how she couldn’t be like her idol - not the right sinews, improper muscle growth, stunted avian bone structure. So many “harmless” words doctors like to use to say “you’re broken.” But the why? She didn’t know why. She would never fly as great as Rainbow Dash. Or fly.
She peered out her window on her top floor, down onto the streets of Ponyville. She looked down to her flank, a Cutie Mark, one with a rocket and lightning bolt. Pasted over her orange skin, a symbol of her “failure” in what she thought was her destiny. That was always a lingering thought, that she couldn’t fulfil her own “destiny.”
She knew the how - you’re broken, said in a different way by a doctor. She knew the when - just after her 13th birthday, just going to see how you’re developing, sweetheart. After quite a few tests, the answer was she wasn’t and never will.
The ‘why’ is what got her. Why her? Why not somepony else?
After the diagnosis she couldn’t even ride her own scooter. It was deemed too “dangerous” to ride “given her condition.” She couldn’t scoot. With the placement of two short words - impidus pegasanus - her hopes, the freedom she felt on her rides around town, her style, gone. Walking - walking! - around Ponyville, with her pegasus parents after visiting the doctor’s, it felt like she’d lost everything. At least she had Apple Bloom ...
Memory gave way to the present, but the question still remained, “Why can’t I fly like her?” Scootaloo sighed dejectedly to the empty room. It was like looking for her “special purpose” and mark all over again. Feeling rather silly, she realized she expected an answer. It felt worse when she placed who she expected it from.
She hadn’t heard the piping “CUTIE MARK CRUSADERS” cheer in ages. Things had grown distant from her two dear friends when she got her Cutie Mark last. Even now she frowned looking at the mark on her side. All these years and she still hadn’t puzzled out what it meant. Apple Bloom and Sweetie Bell both had bright clear images of their talent, their special place in the world.
Casting an eye about the room, she didn’t see much of a “special place.” Gears and clockwork pieces and technical manuals cluttered every surface. It wasn’t a wonderful life-affirming place, it was a jeweler’s shop going-out-of-business sale brought to her room. They were not even proper building models or something for work, just tick-tock tinkering.
As a filly Scootaloo wanted to be like Dash so badly. She had high hopes when her mark appeared - “it has to do something with flying, I mean, rockets go up in the sky, right?” - but still no luck with achieving such a feat. “Who am I kidding? I’ll never be like her.” She rested her chin on her hooves, her chair swiveling away from the window slowly.
The pony-shaped shadow carved out a chunk of the light streaming in the window. Just getting in the way. A tear ran down her cheek. A full grown mare, crying in the sunlight. Pathetic.
“I’ll never be as good as you ...” She admitted to the hallway as she entered it. Making her way downstairs as she stretched out a bit. Scootaloo hovered weakly to exercise her wings in the morning sun, not being able to do much better than that. Most days she didn’t even bother any more.
She slowly cantered over to a field, sitting down in the lush waving grass. The wind blew her mane aside and the tears dripped off of the young Mare’s face. She used to be the most “go get ’em” filly in Ponyville. But that was years ago. She looked up to the clouds and saw a rainbow streak the skies. It was her, this made Scootaloo feel worse. She had come to somewhat of a realization in that moment. “What am I supposed to do?” she asked herself.
She rested on her side, feeling like having a lazy day in the park. She looked up to see all the other ponies playing in the distance. By now the tears stopped. Though her cheeks were wet, almost raw, from this low moment. She slowly sat up, slumped over. She got back to her hooves soon after, stretching out slightly in doing so.
Her stomach growled mildly, having not eaten breakfast. She felt the pangs grow just a small bit. She hung her head, walking over to Sugarcube Corner to grab something to eat. Upon walking in she was greeted by a small blue filly, with a dark blue mane and tail, curly. ‘Just like Pinkie...’ She thought to herself.
“Hey Scootaloo!” The small filly called out. She had a cheery smile on her face.
“Hey, Blueberry,” Scootaloo replied with a flat tone. “Can I get a table please?”
Blueberry gave her a strange look. “Are you okay?” She asked, a little worried, she had never seen her like this before.
“I’m just a little hungry.” Scootaloo reassured the young girl.
“Oh, okay! And guess what?” She said showing her flank to to the elder. “I got my cutie mark today!” It was a small slice of pie, Blueberry. “Isn’t it AWESOME!?” she called out.
She sighed a bit, nodding very slightly. “That’s great,” She said as she sat down at a table, resting her head on her hooves. “You can make me whatever you make best!” She smiled and winked at the filly. “That a deal?”
Blueberry’s eyes lit up. “My first order!” She had exclaimed bouncing around. and straight into the kitchen. A good 10 minutes later she returned with a small one pony sized pie.
“What is it?” Scootaloo asked her, already knowing what it was. An attempt to add some humor to her day.
“Balooooo-berry pie.” She said, stretching out her words, punctuated with a giggle.
“I figured,” Scootaloo said with a smile taking a small bite of the treat. A sweet flavor embraced her mouth. It was the best pie she had ever tasted, and she couldn’t wait to finish it. “This is amazing!” She said softly to the young filly, “You’ll be getting a tip. That’s for sure.”
“Thank you Scoots,” Blueberry said walking away to let her eat in peace.
‘Outdone by a filly...’ Scootaloo thought, saddened even more by the event. She soon finished the pie. “I’m done” She called out, waiting for Blueberry to return.
“Yes!” The girl called out in cheer. “How was it? WAS IT GOOOD? How much should I charge?” She went on a little bit too long, she realised.
“Well, It was the best pie I had ever tasted.” She patted Blueberry on the head. “Hmm, how much do you think you should charge?” Scootaloo looked at her, raising an eyebrow.
“It’s normally ten bits for a small fruit pie...” She said looking down.
“That sounds fine.” She pulled out some money. “Here you go.” She handed her twenty bits. “Ten for the pie, and ten because it was such good service.” She smiled sincerely at the young baker.
“Thank you thank you thankyouthankyouthankyou!” She repeated walking back into the kitchen.
Scoot, now no longer hungry, walked back out into Ponyville. The clock-tower bell went off, signaling that it was noon. Soon the streets became busy with all the merchants and traders. The sound of clopping on the cobble streets filled the air. It felt good; Ponyville was quaint and just-right. Just the right size, and such a classic feel. It was enough to make a newcomer feel nostalgia. The smells, too, filled the air. The pies, the assortment of hay and flowers. It was almost enough to make her hungry again.
She walked towards Fluttershy’s house, moving northward to a small beach in the direction. The peninsula went a good two miles out into the ocean. The salty breez danced about her. She loved the feeling of the warm sand beneath her hooves. Scootaloo planted herself, warm in the firm light sand. Her eyes wandered over the theater of shells, receding in and out with the tide. The small white sand-crabs and bleach-pink hermits, crawling and burrowing on the beach. She laid there for what must have been a few hours, absorbing the many sights and sounds. It was now 5 o’clock. She realised she had wasted a good day lazing about, but knew it was worth it. Once more her stomach growled again, she figured she should head back soon.
She hovered over to her house a few minutes after. Walking in, looked at her fishbowl, resting her chin on the table, looking at her four-year-old guppy. It was something the mare took pride in, she had kept it alive so long ... It was time to clean the bowl. She moved the gray fish over to a large jug, emptying out the water, and scrubbing the bowl. “Crystal cl-” Scootaloo slipped in a small puddle of water, the bowl landing on her head. Her cheeks turned red, even though she was alone ... Scoots took a quick glance at a mirror. As if she had a fire in her chest, inspiration exploded in her heart. She finished filling and replanting the bowl, putting the guppy back in its place, feeding it a few sprinkles of flakes.
She made her way to the library down the street. She opened the door, slightly saddened by it... It had been so lonely and down in maintenance since Twilight left a few years ago. She bit her bottom lip making her way to the S section. The musty place had once been so, lively. It was, different, in some way, Scootaloo couldn’t put her hoof on the feeling. An empty library (empty of Twilight, anyway) was void and bare. It was the worst feeling that had ever come over her.
She paused by a small library table in the far “S” section, between Science and Solemnity. On it used to lay a note from Twilight. “Be back in a few days, going to Canterlot to pick up supplies.” Scootaloo’s eyes watered up as she remembered this, remembering the fun days they had as a filly, then never seeing twilight again.
Scootaloo got lost in her subconscious memories with the CMC that flooded up seeing the broken down library. ‘Ten long years...’ The thought ran through her mind, and it exploded in her. “It’s been ten years since I’ve seen her...” She looked down, drops of her reminiscent tears hit the floor uncontrollably. One particular memory crossed Scootaloo’s mind, the night Sweetie got her cutie mark. She remembered having one of the Cutie Mark Crusaders sleepovers in the Library. They were studying different ways to get them. Sweetie-Belle belted out in her glorious tone. She said a few simple words and it had just appeared. “I love to sing,” She remembered. She also remembered the following weeks when she broke off from the group, not really needing to be a part anymore. Although they continued to talk, It was never the same.
She shook her head taking her mind off the paper she just saw. Scootaloo looked along the bookshelves, scanning them, pulling out a few books, then on to the M section, getting another book. She walked towards the door, turning around, taking one last look before leaving.
She walked down the street and saw Apple Bloom painting a mural for a new restaurant in Ponyville. Scootaloo waved at her and Apple Bloom waved back with cheery eyes saying, “Hey Scootaloo.”
Scoots replied with a simple hello and continued on her way into her house. She got caught in yet another memory.
Her eyes, once again, began to water as she remembered the last day she really spent with her good friend Apple Bloom. The two were at Sugarcube Corner hanging out with Pinkie-Pie. They were asking details on how she felt when she got her cutie mark. Pinkie explained it was just an urge she had. Apple Bloom took that to heart and took icing and created a very beautiful icing screen, a picture of Apple Bloom and Scootaloo in the tree house with Sweetie. It had been a good year since they had even talked to Sweetie-Bell. Sad... She had nostalgia looking at the cake. Apple Bloom’s cutie-mark appeared respectively. It was a paintbrush and a palette in the shape of an apple. The two stayed in contact, but after that Apple Bloom was ALWAYS too busy to spend much time with Scootaloo. She constantly painted for the ponies of Ponyville. Whether it be a mural or just a fresh coat, she always had something to do.
She hung her head, realising that she had been so separated from her friends, walking into the house. She felt a deep sadness now, but the inspiration held off depression. Scootaloo stopped, jaw dropped, her eyes once again watered up.... Scoots began to cry as she took her saddlebags off and rushed to her fishbowl... The once lively fish was unmoving on the surface of the water. The one thing she had been proud of and loved in her life was now gone... She had to do something... Scoots swiped the bowl off of the table in a depression-fueled rage, tears running down her silent face. The bowl landed in a shatter, the water spilling onto her wooden floor, she stormed into her workshop.
She pulled out a piece of paper. She began to draw a figure, with measurements on it. There was a knock at the door a few hours in, and Scoot’s head popped up. “Huh?” She called out, seeing it was night time already. She walked to the door, “Who is it?” She asked as she opened it. A paint covered pony stood on the porch in the darkness.
Spacegirl - Chapter 2
“It’s me...” Apple Bloom said, with a sad look on her face. She was a little messy and had a tear on her cheek, “Seeing you today...” she looked up again. “I miss you, we never really see each other anymore.” She softly bit her bottom lip.
“We-well,” Scootaloo’s voice trailed of in a moment of weakness, “c-come in..” Scootaloo said, stepping out of the way. “I was just drafting up some blueprints.” She put on a half smile, hoping that she wouldn’t fall apart in front of Apple Bloom. “Nothing too big.”
“What happened here..?” Bloom asked, looking at the large mess on the floor.
“Zap died...” Scootaloo said with a long drawn-out sigh, looking at the large amount of glass and water on the floor. She felt bad for doing it, but she couldn’t help it. Nothing had gone her way. Nothing ever went her way. It’d been that way all of her life; she felt broken in that sense.
“That old fish you won at that carnival, years ago?” Apple Bloom said in shock. “It was still alive? How long has it been?” She had a wild look on her face, still not able to believe that a simple carnival fish could be alive after that long.
“Four years...” Scoots said, her eyes a little glassy. “I need to pick up the mess... I just didn’t have a good day.” She began to sweep up the glass, shoveling the fish onto a piece of paper unceremoniously.
“I’ll mop for you, okay?” Bloom said quietly. Scootaloo shook her head in reply. “What were you drafting?” She then asked, intrigued by Scootaloo’s work. She had somewhat of a similar trade, and wanted to share some stories.
“Plans.” Scootaloo muttered lowly, dropping the glass into a bin. She picked up the paper and placed it on the table, then continued to mop up the floor. She stopped again to ask,“So, what have you been up to? Besides work and all,” before returning to wipe up the water.
“Well, not much, honestly. I’m always tied up. Do you mind if I hang out? Its been way too long.” Bloom looked around the dimly lit house, “And you should turn lights on, too dark.”
“Yeah, stay a while. It’ll be nice having company.” Scootaloo yawned a bit and walked into her workshop motioning for her friend to follow. Apple Bloom walked in behind her while eyeing the blueprints on Scoot’s workbench.
“What’s that?” Bloom asked, raising her brow slightly.
“Well, it’s... hard to explain.” Scootaloo said, with a determined look in her eye, as she continued. “You know I can’t fly with my wings,” A soft tone spoken “But I ran into inspiration today.”
“Define ‘inspiration’,” Apple Bloom requested. Her intrigue shifted from the actual art to the mechanics her friend planned on crafting.
“Well, I feel I should show you instead.” Scoots stated. “But first, I have to do something with Zap.” She looked at the table, then to Bloom. “Any ideas?”
“It’s a fish, I’m not really sure.” Bloom carried on “If it were me, I’d just flush it. However, I know he meant a lot to you, so we should give him some form of ceremony.”
“Yeah, but what? I would feel weird just flushing him like that,” pondered Scootaloo. “I feel we should have a silent burial. It seems only right. He was a dear friend.” She knew she was being a bit melodramatic, but she still could not help it at the loss of her long-time pet.
“Why not send him on his way in the creek?” Apple Bloom considered excitedly. “I think it would be nice to send him back where he came from. It’d be very fitting for a fish.”
Scootaloo’s heart was warmed a little, excited in a way to once again share a moment with her dear old friend.
The two walked down the dim lamp-lit streets of Ponyville. The click-clack underneath their hooves creating the only sound in the silent night. The cool, crisp fall air whispered slightly as it blew by. As the pair reached the creek on the edge of Ponyville, the wind picked up. The fall leaves drifted carelessly by. Scootaloo sat on the edge of the small river, silent. Apple Bloom stood close and kissed the other mare’s forehead. Scootaloo had tears in her eyes. Not just because of the fish. To be honest, she normally wouldn’t have gotten so worked up, but the events of the past week had dragged her down. She’d never really expressed it before and the melodrama of the current situation gave her a reason.
Scootaloo emptied the fish into the water, then crumpling the paper it was in. Apple Bloom planted herself next to Scootaloo, also silent.
“Two more days,” Scootaloo said aloud. She didn't mean to say it, it was just so quiet.
At first, this confused Apple Bloom. She sat there for a good thirty seconds, silently trying to figure out what she meant. She gave up and asked, “T-two days ‘till what?” She spoke in a low murmur, scared of the answer she would receive.
Scootaloo looked up at her with watery eyes for a few seconds, then back down to the flowing stream of water. Tears fell with the movement of her head. She hoofed the paper over to Apple Bloom without a word.
Apple Bloom opened it. Her lips parted slightly and she looked back up to Scootaloo whose eyes were closed, a steady stream of tears slowly dancing down her face. Here eyes wandered back down to the paper still in disbelief. “Why...?” She questioned, not having finished her sentence. “Why didn’t you tell me?”
Scootaloo moved her eyes away from Bloom as she spoke. “I was scared you’d just abandon me.” She let out a long sigh.
“Why would I?” Apple Bloom said. She was in shock that Scootaloo would even think that. “Why would I abandon you when you need me the most?” Apple Bloom opened her mouth to speak again, but only a small noise escaped her throat. She decided it was best not to say anything. Instead she continued with a hug, wrapping her forelegs around the other stroking her mane. “It’ll be fine, sugar cube, just hold out.”
“Why can’t I at least have them?” Scootaloo said looking up at Bloom, like a child to a parent.
Apple Bloom’s expression got even more sorrowful. “I don’t know... I really don’t.” She continued to hold her friend tightly in the hopes of comforting her.
Scootaloo broke down crying, pushing herself into Bloom. She sobbed, a pool of tears forming on Apple Blooms lap. “Why is this happening to me?”
Bloom sat, softly stroking the other’s head, “It’ll be okay.” she said, but Scootaloo’s crying only got worse. She sat with her until she was nearly done, until the sobbing turned into irregular, sharp breathing, and sniffles. “It’s fine, honey,” Apple Bloom reassured.
Soon the tears stopped. The young female’s eyes were red from crying. She had finally broke, but at least she felt better. It was around midnight now and Bloom knew it was time to head in. They’d been sitting there for a few hours in the cold, “We need to get inside, Scootaloo,” Bloom stated, “we’ll get sick...”
Scootaloo nodded somberly and stood up, her head low. She slightly leaned on Apple Bloom on their slow walk to her house.
Upon entering, Scootaloo laid down on her couch, still silent. Her face was expressionless. Apple Bloom followed close behind closing the door and flipped on a light. She sat on a chair opposite the couch. The warm, blue felt underneath her cold flank felt good, but she hardly noticed it through her worry.
“So...” Apple Bloom said, dragging out the syllable. Scootaloo perked her ears to let Bloom know she was listening. “Why do you have to get them...amputated?”
“Amputation”, thought Scootaloo. It scared her. It was a scary thought to lose your wings. Admitting it made it feel...worse. Something a Pegasus should never have to live through. But, for her better interest and well-being, she must.
She snuggled into her couch, reluctant to talk at first, then turning her head. She paused for a moment before sitting up and saying, “I’m getting blood clots because of problems with my avian marrow.” She looked down, her eyes watering again. “It can cause... bad complications.” She put a slight emphasis on complications, Bloom knew what she meant signified by a grim lowering of her head.
“Well, honey, you need to get your mind off of it. Thinking about it will only make it worse,” said Apple Bloom with a concerned pitch, her voice tailing off a bit as she finished. Scoot weakly nodded and rose to her hooves. Apple Bloom smiled as she did this, a sign of improvement in her eyes. “How about I stay the night, and we can stay up while you draw up your plans and talk, okay?” Bloom let out, in an attempt to cheer Scoot up.
“That sounds... nice...” Scootaloo said, as she forced a smile; small as it may have been, a smile none the less. Time with her friend WAS what she needed, and she got that. Scoots walked back to the workshop, motioning the opposite to follow. Apple Bloom stood and walked in behind her.
“Here it is.” Scootaloo said, pointing out the blueprint on her desk to Bloom.
“Is... is that a rocket pack?” Apple Bloom asked, aghast.
Scootaloo was suddenly embarrassed, though she couldn’t quite figure out why. Maybe it was because ponies weren’t supposed to go into space.
“Pretty nifty, huh?” Scootaloo’s mood rose slightly just being around Apple Bloom. She picked up her drafting bar with her mouth and made tweaks and adjustments to the numbers scribbled on the page.
“So, how did you get your cutie mark?” Bloom asked Scootaloo. “I wasn’t around that day when you got it.” Saying it aloud made her feel bad. She realized that Scoot was there for her every step of the way. Scootaloo was the only one who got it alone. This did not sit well with Apple Bloom and it made her feel sick to her stomach.
“Well, shortly after my 13th birthday, I still wanted to fly, you know?” She tucked the graphite in the corner of her mouth as she spoke. “So I drew up some plans for a flying machine, she looked up to the ceiling where it was posted, they were prosthetic wings she never actually built. “Yeah, then I realized I wanted to fly like Rainbow Dash. That’s when it appeared.”
Apple Bloom looked at her. “Oh, I see now. Well, I’m sorry I wasn’t there for you.” She sulked a bit as Scoot continued to draft her intricate plans. They made small talk for a few hours while Scootaloo finished the shell design of the jet battery. She made sure that the shell had enough room for any parts, while staying structurally sound, and even to avoid breaking.
“Well, I think I better hit the hay, Scootaloo,” Bloom said with a yawn. “Where do I sleep?” Her eyes were drooping, she had stayed up much later than she was used to.
“Well, you can have the bed; I don’t know if I’ll sleep tonight.” Scoots replied. She laid the graphite down and turned to face Bloom.
“Alright, well, have fun, and get to sleep soon.” Scootaloo nodded and swiveled back to her blueprints. Apple Bloom turned around to head upstairs.
As morning came, Bloom slowly got out of bed, still not all the way there. She staggered to her hooves, shaking out her curls. She stumbled her way down the stairs, into the workshop, where she found a passed out Scootaloo.
Scootaloo was resting her head on one of her hooves, her mouth just slightly open, her face covered by her short mane. Bloom wiped her eyes out to get a better visual and proceeded to pick up the other female and move her to the couch. She went upstairs to fetch a blanket, returning to find that Scootaloo was already awake. She was pulling out a yawn and rubbing her eyes, sitting up on the couch. “Good morning Apple Bloom,” Scootaloo said in a tired voice. “Did you move me here? I don’t remember falling asleep in on the couch.”
“Yeah, I did. So do you want breakfast, it looks like you had a long night.” Bloom said as she sat on the couch and draped the blanket over Scoots shoulders.
“Yeah, that sounds...” The next few words were slurred too much to be audible. Scootaloo’s eyes drooped, her head hung low, still very fatigued from her long night.
“I’ll get started on that right away, Scootaloo.” Apple Bloom said, standing up again. Scootaloo nodded, barely able to lift her head.
Apple Bloom cantered cheerily to the kitchen to cook up some breakfast. She scoured the cupboards and cabinets to find the necessary ingredients; she pulled out some sugar, flour, hay, bran, raisins and two apples. Turning on the oven to preheat, she diced the apples into tiny bits and mixed the raisins in. Thinking for a second, she fetched some milk and some yeast. Measuring out the ingredients in precise amounts, she mixed them into a sweet smelling batter. Tossing the bulk of the fruit mix into the bowl, she got out a muffin tin and filled four of the shells. Sprinkling some hay on top, she deemed them ready and set them in the oven to bake.
She paused again, pondering how to make breakfast more filling. She diced all of the hay some and crushed it into powder, adding it to a blender, dumping in the remainder of the fruit mix. She also added some wheat grass, bananas, and plain yogurt.. She turned on the blender and mixed it into a thick milkshake for them. Soon after, the oven pinged. Apple Bloom pulled out the perfectly browned muffins and removed them, putting two on a plate. She sat the plates at the two person table along the kitchen wall, filling a glass with the shake setting it by the plate. She cleaned up her cooking mess, setting the wet utensils out to dry.
Apple Bloom walked back into the den to find Scootaloo slumped over passed out again. She poked the pegasus, who immediately awoke. “It’s ready.” Apple Bloom said in a cheery voice, hoping to make the awakening more bearable.
Scootaloo let out a dazed, “Okay,” then stood slowly, rocking back and forth ever so slightly. She made her plodding way to the kitchen, the wonderful fruit smells wafting about in a dance. They woke her up slightly, made noticeable by more opened eyes and a lick of the lips. They sat down at the table. She took a bite of one of her muffins and chewed it slowly. “Thank you, this is really good.” She said, she hadn’t swallowed yet, she was too tired for good manners.
“My pleasure,” Apple Bloom replied. She took a bite, sipping on the milkshake. The two finished their breakfast in silence. “Well, I have to go... Ill be here tomorrow, I’ll go to Canterlot with you for the surgery, okay?”
“Sounds like a plan.” Scootaloo said, almost fully awake now. “See you tomorrow, and thank you for breakfast.” Apple Bloom took the plates and washed them off as well. “You didn't have to do that for me,” Scootaloo kindly stated, “but, thank you.”
“It’s really no problem at all, sugar cube,” Apple Bloom said in reply. She stretched out and headed towards the door, “Seeya tomorrow!” She took her leave with a goodbye from Scootaloo.
Scootaloo couldn’t eat for the rest of the day in preparation of the surgery, so she stayed indoors all day finishing a blueprint for an office building for Manehatten. It was to be a modern style office with glass paneling. She went to bed early to be well rested for the next day.
Scootaloo awoke to a knock at her door. She pulled herself out of bed, energized from the nice rest. She called out, “Hold on, I’m coming,” To let the other pony know she was on her way. She ran a brush over her mane and hustled to the door.
Upon opening it she found it to be Apple Bloom. “Come on in.” She said, stepping out of the way.
Bloom had a concerned look on her face, hoping her friend would be okay at the end of the day. “Are you ready to leave?”
Scoots put on a smile, glad that Apple Bloom would be by her side, “Yeah, whenever you are.”
“So how are we gunna get there?” Bloom questioned. She yawned a bit, as it was still early.
“Chariot, I need to be there within a few hours.” said Scootaloo, Apple Bloom nodded. Scootaloo’s smile had turned into a scared look, “I can’t eat today, so we can go now.” She said nervously. Today was the day she had waited a whole month for. Today was going to knock all worry away if the outcome was good. But it would also strip from her her birthright as a Pegasus.
“Where are we going to meet the chariot at?” Apple Bloom looked at a clock then to Scootaloo again.
“Near the front of town.” She too looked towards the clock, “We had better get going, it’ll be here in about 20 minutes.” With a nod from Apple Bloom, they exited the house. Together they began the trek to the hospital that would change Scootaloo forever.
They sat on the bridge in front of Ponyville, hanging their hooves over the edge. Scootaloo was flapping her wings softly, knowing this was the last chance she would get. The chariot pulled up. This was it. These were the final few hours of Scootaloo being a true Pegasus, at least in her eyes...
An hour after departing, they stood at the gate to the hospital. It was time. Scootaloo took a gulp and boldly walked into the surgery building. Her eyes were wet, the droplets pooling around the corner of her eyes.
The pair sat in the waiting room after signing in, still silent. The head surgeon popped out and called Scootaloo into the operating room. Before going Apple Bloom called out, “I’ll be waiting here when you’re done, I promise, good luck.” Scootaloo turned around, a single tear hitting the floor before she disappeared behind the door. After Scoot was out of sight Apple Bloom leaned into her hooves and began to weep for her dear friend.
An hour into the surgery, Apple Bloom became hungry. She hadn’t eaten breakfast this morning. She got up, looking at the door before making her way to the cafeteria. She bought a sandwich, quickly eating it, returning to her place.
Waking up so early, she quickly got tired just sitting, so she grabbed a pencil and paper, doodling for about an hour. She eventually got too tired to continue, she rested her eyes to nap.
Apple Bloom woke up to a nudge. He eyes opened slowly as she asked, “Scootaloo?” to see that it was a nurse pony with a smile. She was relieved to see the smile, it gave her confidence that the surgery went good.
“Well, the operation was successful and she’s in recovery. She’s still out, but if you want to see her, you can.” Apple Bloom’s mood rose dramatically. She was relieved to hear the Scootaloo was going to be okay. She stood up, following the nurse into the recovery room.
There she was, the beautiful orange pony with the short purple mane. She was sleeping on her side. Bandages barrel-wrapped over her chest and around her back. Her eyes were closed. She was breathing softly, the covers pulled up over her bottom half. She was hooked into different machines and IV drips. She looked innocent, and precious, so peaceful. It was over, she no longer had wings.
No more wings.
Spacegirl - Chapter 3
Three years passed, wounds healed. The scars didn’t. they would remain forever, jutting out at the small of her back, refusing to fade in time, a reminder that she was no longer a true Pegasus, a broken Pegasus pony whose non-existent wings would never touch the firm kiss of the wind, ever, again. It was something she had to look at every day, to remind her; to remind her of the pain, of not being a true Pegasus anymore. Or that’s what she had felt like, but in time the feelings passed.
She had gotten over it after a while. It had been so... strange at the beginning. The first few days she’d tried to flap her wings, but she hadn't been able to feel them - her body still telling her they were there, just out of reach. Eventually it was like they were simply numb, but with a dawning realization that such wasn’t the case - they weren’t even there.
Sometimes when she had looked at the scars, it reminded her of her past, but she outgrew that too in time. In reality, having them gone made her happy. It was strange, but at least now she wasn’t forced to wear something broken - the oh-so-ugly word that she despised. Without the worry of her wings, she had excelled in her career, not having constant doctor visits, or sick days when she wasn’t feeling tip top. Throwing herself into her job had paid off, and she did love her job. Without the worry, the what-if’s, the second-guessing she had progressed in leaps and bounds from her humble beginnings.
In her spare time she had slowly continued work with her rocket pack. Never losing interest in it, even creating a few working models on a miniature scale. She was past her prototyping stage now and had begun drafting alpha stages for the intricate full-scale machinery.
Many things had changed in just three short years. Apple Bloom was a prime example; she had gotten married. It had been a joyous event. They held a grand wedding in the town square, and everypony joined the celebration. Apple Bloom completed everything she ever wanted that day.
Scootaloo walked down the streets, a sincere smile planted upon her orange snout as she cantered down the main street to Sugarcube Corner. There she met three ponies. “Hey Bloom, hey Blueberry!” She called out, leaning down to the small filly, who had just barely learned to talk. The filly was Apple Bloom’s daughter. She kissed the young one on the forehead. “And look at you Little Fritter,” she laughed to herself, smirking. “Aren’t you just getting so big?” The little filly smiled and nodded. She was no bigger than Macintosh's head. She was a cream colored tot, with straight blond hair, much like Applejack’s, but slightly longer. She had white freckles plastered on her face, with large yellow eyes exactly like her mother.
Blueberry was hopping around some. Hyper as always. She had grown so much in the three years. And now so wonderful at baking! It had surprised no one she was granted the title of “head” pastry chef at Sugarcube Corner, at the age of thirteen. “Sooo, Scootaloo!” The blue filly called out, bouncing around as cheerfully as ever. “What did you want today!? My treat!” Her voice was much like Pinkie Pie’s though not quite as high pitched.
“Why thank you!” She smiled and pondered for a moment. “You really don't have to, I don't mind paying,” she caught the look in Blueberry’s eye, “--But if you’re sure, may I have one of your amazing pies. Surprise me!” She said gleefully as the group walked in.
Blueberry walked into the kitchen as the other three sat at a table in the back. Apple Bloom had a smile on her face as she asked, “So, how does it feel to be twenty-one?” She smiled and laughed, making an interesting bottoms-up gesture with one hoof. “Happy birthday sugar cube.” She said softly looking out the booth’s window.
A young Stallion walked in and made his way to the table as well. He was slightly darker than Fritter, eyes brown, slightly larger than Big Macintosh. He sat and kissed Bloom as he scooted in next to her. “And how is our birthday girl?” He says as he looks to Scootaloo. He put on a sly smile. “So did you have anything planned?” He rested himself on the table and yawned.
“Yeah Buck,” Scootaloo bubbled, “Spend the day with you all. What else could I wish for?” She had in mind one thing, she wishes she could see sweetie belle once more. She sighed and looked to her right, to the center of the room. Scootaloo played absent-mindedly with the Daffodil placed gently in her braided mane.
Rolling her head to shift her hair back in its rightful place, she made eyes with someone she had never even seen before. He looked “foreign,” whatever extent of the word that may be. He was an Earth Pony, with a silky gray sheen. His mane was just slightly darker than his coat, his eyes a piercing blue that jarred with his somber-colored coat. It was like seeing living emeralds in a weak muddy pond.
He broke contact after a moment, then darted his gaze down to a folded newspaper. The gaze had lingered too long to mean just “oh, that’s a pony there.” Making eyes just past his left ear - which was flicking nervously, she now realized - Scootaloo realized this was staring.
She looked down sharply to the floor, hoping to hide the creeping blush burning on her face. “His eyes. They’re gorgeous ...” She found it hard to breathe, a self conscious feeling collapsed in around her. She gawked like a school-filly at pony across the room.
“What were you staring at?” Apple Bloom drawled. Scootaloo sunk a bit in her chair at the question. Bloom glanced over her shoulder, taking in something tall, gray, and handsome. She gave something of a smirk. “I see, well, go talk to him.” She grinned a little widely, “Ya never know, you might like him, or better, he may like you!”
Scootaloo ran her hoof over her head, laughing with a bit of embarrassment. “N-no, I couldn’t just walk up to him, that would be, rude...”
“Nonsense Scootaloo, how else do ponies meet?” Apple Bloom laughed some, raising an eyebrow, pressuring Scootaloo.
“Fine.” She stuttered as she rose up. She trotted over to the unknown male, her ears pinned back as she spoke. “H-hey... I’m Scootaloo...” She was being slightly forward in the way she spoke, new to this form of meeting people.
“Excuse me?” The large male said, looking down at scootaloo. “Oh, My name is Winston. Did you need something?” He smiled some, wanting to know the purpose of the visit.
“Well, I haven’t seen you around before,” spoke Scootaloo, “And I just wanted to know.. well, to say hi.” She got lost in her words just slightly shy.
“Well, I see you’re with somepony right now, so, wait ‘till your done and we can talk.” His blue eyes crinkled, happy to chat with a nice girl. It went so well with his afternoon coffee, that daring little thought ‘Ahh, a nice earth pony girl for me.’ He glanced at her sashay on the way back to her table, smiling to his paper before continuing to read.
Scootaloo walked back to their table with something of a stumble. “He offered to have lunch with me!” She whispered excitedly as she sat back down to talk with her friend. “I’m SO excited, he’s so ... cute!” This last part was blurted through a toothy grin.
“See, told ya.” She said, a sharp cut off to her tone, much like how applejack speaks. She turned around to see Blueberry walking her way with a tray on her snout.
The young mare walked up to the table, sitting Scootaloo’s plate in front of her. “For you Scoot, I have a peach pie, your faavoriteee!” Blueberry hopped about. “And now a song!”
Everyone in the café braced themselves.
“Have a happy birthday, I really wish you well! And because it’s a special day I do hope it’s swell! Well now I’m off so please take care! To my friend the birthday mare!” She sang, as she bounced about, enjoying herself. She soon after settled down and hopped off to the kitchen.
“I’ll never get tired of her,” Scootaloo said lightheartedly as she bit into the warm pie. That oh-so-familiar taste of Blueberry’s pies sank into her mouth. She continued eating it until she finished then sat her plate on the side of the table. “I love her food so much...” She rested back on her chair putting her hoof on her belly. “A little too much.” She belched softly, almost inaudibly and she leaned forward with the pressure reliefe. “Excuse me!.”
Little Fritter’s eyes shifted back and forth and she had a huge smile on her face. “TIME FOR PRESENTS!” She called out, excited for her mother’s friend to see their gift. She pulled a box out, flat and rectangular. She hoofed it across the table, bouncing in excitement. “Open it open it open it!” She chanted, almost bursting in anticipation.
Scootaloo opened up the box and smiled warmly. It was a small painted picture, it had a few shapes resembling ponies on it, one orange and purple, one yellow and red, and the other one cream and yellow. “Aweee, I love it Fritter!” She hugged the small painting and placed it in front of her, kissing her forehead.
“Really!” The filly called out with a sense of pride. She had a slightly smug look on her face as it was her first painting ever. “Just for you on your special day Aunt Scootaloo.”
Apple Bloom took a small box out of her saddlebag and sat it on the table, there was a small amount of tears in her eyes. Scootaloo looked slowly down at the box, slightly scared to open it. She propped the boxes lid up, gulped and pulled it off. Inside was a small locket. She hooked it over her hoof looking up to Apple Bloom, still silent. She flipped it open looking at the inside. It was a picture of the trio back when they had they were still in the Cutie Mark Crusaders. She popped it around her neck and went to Bloom bringing her into a long hug, the small filly joining in too. “Thank you,” she muttered. “This is very special.”
Apple Bloom and fritter took their leave so they could get back to the farm. Winston soon after stood up and sat across from Scootaloo. “So what did you have in mind young lady?” He had just a slight country accent tied into his voice, almost unnoticeable. “And happy birthday.” She smiled at her and rested his elbow on the table.
“We-well,” She was getting all antsy and shy once again. “Would you like to eat with me? And how did you know it was my birthday?” She laughed a bit, still happy that he came to her.
Winston turned around and looked straight to Blueberry. “The... ‘cheery’... blue one.” He said in a slight sarcastic tone. “She was singing for you, so, I assumed.”
“Well, ya guessed right.” She rubbed the back of her head, her cheeks still red. “Would you?..” She repeated still waiting for an answer.
“Well, I’d be honored. Would you like to eat here or somewhere else?” He asked with a certain tone of sincerity to his voice.
She lowered her head slightly, she was still not warmed up to the stranger, though careful not. “I just ate here, and it would be nice to eat elsewhere.” She was kind of excited to eat out with someone besides apple bloom for a change. The pair rose to their hooves and made their way from the cafe’, and headed to a restaurant on the other side of town.
Spacegirl - Chapter 4
The pair left the restaurant in an excited tizzy. Scootaloo smiled, slightly hiding it beneath her mane. Winston gave her a fleeting smile in return. They both turned back and began to walk slowly toward their destination. Both having realised they had no place in mind, yet they didn’t say anything to each other. The peaceful feeling they both felt made them hope that this walk wouldn’t end any time soon.
Scootaloo looked upon the stallion beside her. The pair had been walking in serene silence for much longer than planned. They had reached the edge of Ponyville in what seemed like a few short minutes,and dusk had began to fall over the wilderness surrounding the quaint burg. They ever so silently headed towards the river and sat down.
Breaking the silence, Winston softly spoke, almost as if out of turn, “ I see the scar on your back... I would like to know what happened.” The apparition of his western drawl comforted Scootaloo in a nostalgic way.
Scootaloo looked down once more, this was near the spot where she had been picked up and taken to that hospital just three years back. A small, steady stream of tears dripped down her muzzle, and she replied with a saddened tone, somewhat mismatched with the surroundings, “When I was younger, I was diagnosed with... a disease...”
“What kind of disease?” her partner replied to her news, mimicking her tone in a inquisitive way.
“Well, in some pegasi, the joint that lets you move your wings... isn’t good. Almost broken. When this happens, you can get a blood clot in your back, which can cause paralysis, or worse, So, in the end, I had to get them, amp-”
Winston had a look of shock on his face. “Y-you’re a Pegasus?” He stuttered.
This wasn’t the reaction Scootaloo had hoped for. She wished for the opposite, for a stranger to accept her for who she was, not for what she appeared to be. “I understand,” she said as she stood abruptly.
“Understand what?” he replied quickly, standing up with the female, “What do you mean?”
Scootaloo tried to stop herself, but her emotional state didn’t allow for it. She began, a bit harsher than she wanted, “You... you... guhh!” She said, beginning to cry even harder. She didn’t need this. The male watched as she stood and wept a bit more before moving a bit closer. Winston stood in silence as well. The serene sense the silence gave was gone and a colder feeling came in its stead. She calmed down a bit and wiped her tears, lying down a bit further again, “Sorry, It... It’s just an emotional subject.”
Winston nodded with a certain understanding for her. He hadn’t met anyone with her condition before, so it was new to him. But he knew it didn’t change her as a pony, and he didn’t mind. “Listen Scootaloo, How you are on the outside, and how you were born, don’t matter to me.” He spoke softly.
The young girl’s cheeks heated up instantly, turning from amber to to a light pink. “Well, thank you.” She tripped over her words as she tried to think of something to reply but hung up on herself momentarily. “Its really not so bad I guess, just... emotional.” She lied, it’s not how she felt about the issue at all.
Winston stopped and thought for a second, wanting to talk on the subject a bit more. “Wanna take a seat and stop and talk a bit before going to eat?”
“So what did you want to talk about.” Her shoulders shrugged in as she spoke. A testament to her shyness.
“Well, your condition seems to bring you down some.” He leaned on on his side to create some comfort for himself. “So why don’t you tell me a bit about it?”
The two sat at the river for another half-hour, sitting among the ambient serenity of the river; the drawn out tickling of the river against the bank, as Scootaloo finished up her story. She told some of the good and bad in her life, and how she had support from the ponies in her life through it all. It had touched Winston, and his heart bled for the filly. He had wished he could have changed this so that she wouldn’t have had to go through what she did. The sun was nearly at its horizon, and evening began to trot its way over the landscape. They eventually rose to their hooves, heading off towards Dandy Lion, making small talk as they did.
They had finally arrived at their planned destination. They walked into the quaint, small town diner, patiently awaiting the hostess to bring them to their seat. Their hostess walked to the checking station, cheerily exclaiming, “Happy birthday, Scootaloo!” as she brought them to their two seater booth.
An hour after taking their seats they had finished up eating their meal. A silent Scootaloo sat, still shy against the kind strangers hospitality. She spoke, her words coming out smooth to the whisper of her breathing. “I… I don’t know how to thank you…” She was infatuated with the male at this point, she was astounded that he didn’t think she was a freak.
He dabbed his mouth with a napkin, trying to keep his normally lacking manners in check. “Well, you know, I just could not resist you.” He said with a small smile and laugh, trying to place a lightness on the situation. “And you could start by doing me the honor of spending more time with me, Scootaloo.”
Scoot’s heart rose in her chest, her eyes sparkled against the fresh afternoon sun. She hadn’t felt this way before, she was, blissful. “I...” She stuttered slightly, feeling a pressure to reply that she didn’t understand. “I, would love nothing more.” She had regained her composure and tilted her head in a puzzle. “I’m sorry if I am a bit awkward, this... isn’t normal for me.”
“Now don’t be modest little filly,” he said in a laugh, his drawl pulling the syllables in a way that pleased Scootaloo. “I know that the most ADORABLE filly in Equestria couldn’t feel that way.” Scootaloo looked down after this statement. It had felt fake to her, staged. And the worse part, to her at least, was that she did feel this way. “D… Did I say somethin’ to offend you?” he said that she did not take to his flirting.
She shook her head, “I just feel sad sometimes, my, condition, scares people away.” She had felt this way, honestly, when in reality it didn’t. Her self conscious and self-esteem took to that.
“Well I don’t see why it would do that, you are right fine to me.” He showed a sincere smile to her.
Scootaloo placed her hooves on the table and sighed to herself, stretching out her tail and smiling in reply. Thank you, and I mean that.”
The male put his larger hooves onto hers and cocked an ever so slight smile. “You are very welcome, and I mean that.”
Scootaloo’s face turned a bright shade of red, her mouth propped open, the action unexpected. Winston leaned in, towards her face, taking an instinctual cue, she poked her head forward, closing her eyes awkwardly. Their lips had touched, and Scootaloo prolonged her first kiss.
Winston pulled his head back slightly and chuckled, “You are so cute, you know that?”
Scootaloo couldn’t be bothered to reply to him, she was dazed, and excited, she felt awkward, and dumbstruck, her eyes locked into his.
Winston looked to the window and saw the sun begin to dusk itself over Ponyville. “Hey, it’s getting late. I should walk you home before it gets dark.”
Scootaloo’s trance broke as she nodded in reply.”Yeah, that might be a good idea.” She stretched out and slid from the booth, awaiting the male to rise as well.
He took queue and led the female to the door, leaving the money for the check at the podium. He propped the door open with his back hoof, letting the girl out before himself, then taking his place next to her.
She walked forward with him, heading to her house. Just down the road. Within a few minutes of departure they reach her doorstep. She walked to her door and turned around and smiled to Winston. “Thank you for the great time,” she said. It was an an understatement. “Do you want to see each other tomorrow?” She asked shyly.
He waved at her, “I would love to, would you like to meet me at the Sugarcube Corner for breakfast?” he asked in reply, Scootaloo answering with a gleeful nod. “And have a great evening,” he added. Scootaloo smiled softly before walking into her home.
She awoke slowly, raising her forelegs and wrapping them over the top of her head in a yawn, one eyelid still drooping a tad bit. She rose to all fours and stretched her whole body out. Making her way down to the first floor of her house she looked around. She didn’t feel hungry quite yet, so she skipped her breakfast and ran a brush through her hair. Glossy eyed she moved to the bathroom and wiped them off some, clearing her morning vision. She walked to the door and prepared to meet Winston at the Surgarcube Corner. She stepped outside to see a note tied to a rose with a small red bow.
She opened it and read it to herself.
I have a change of plans, meet me in the park, by the Mare Fountain, at noon, don’t be late!
She smiled pondering what the stallion had planned for the afternoon. She cantered light-heartedly down the still, quiet morning streets of Ponyville. On the way, she was stopped by a call of her name.
“Scootaloo!” rang out in a slightly feminine country accent. Scootaloo stopped and turned to the pony, immediately spotting Apple Bloom in the distance.
“Hey there!” She called as she waved, haphazardly galloping to her friend.
“So how was your date?” Bloom immediately piped out, exited to hear the details of the other’s evening.
Scoot’s cheeks began to glow in embarrassment, her eyelids widening so slightly, caught in surprise of the question. “I... w-we... Uh...” She stammered, trying to get a hold of her words. “It was not a date, Apple Bloom…”
“Ohhh, right, and Sweetie is a bad singer…” she said sarcastically, laughing a bit. “Sure as sugar was a date if I had ever seen one, and I have…” she giggled again in a pause. “So, tell me, what did you two do?”
Scoots sighed, and reluctantly spoke, “We went and ate…”
As soon as Scootaloo had finished her sentence Apple Bloom replied, “Aaannnddd?” She dragged out, almost squeaking in excitement.
“W-we... K-k...” She stuttered.
“YOU KISSED HIM!” Applebloom called out. “Ohhhhh! How was it! Tell me everything!” She was bouncing up and down in excitement.
Scootaloo stared at Apple Bloom and laughed. “It was just a kiss.” She cocked her head and smiled. “And I am going to meet him at the park.”
“A second date already!” Apple Bloom said sarcastically. “Well, maybe I should let you go,”
she smiled back to her friend.
“Okay, I’ll see you later, Bloom!” She smiled and waved to her friend as she took of. A few minuets of walking led her to the park that Winston had called her to. She stepped off of the stone and onto the grass, heading towards the fountain in the center of the park.
Scootaloo took a stroll through the park. The long blades of grass tickled the undersides of her hooves with each step. The crushing of the dirt underneath was a pleasant feel; as it had been a few days since she had been to go the the park. The gentle Ponyville breeze slithered between her coats hair. The noon sun high in the air struck her back with a gentle warmth, and she involuntarily stopped to stretch before continuing her silent parade to the center of the park.
‘Words.’ She thought to her self. Just that single word, for what it was worth. She had a tightness in her stomach, a nervousness mixed with excitement. ‘All because of his words.’ She replied to herself.
She took a deep breath and collected herself, raising her head high and proud as she reached the fountain. She looked around the small plaza. It seemed bare and vacant to her, as alive as it was. It was a ghost town, her ghost town. He wasn’t there. She planted herself on a bench, assuring herself her would soon arrive. She felt crushed. Nearly 20 minutes had past. She did have a feeling that he wouldn’t accept her for who she is, in view of who she was. And she persuaded herself she was right. Eyes dry, she mentally sobbed. ‘He said he’d meet me here.’ She couldn’t do or think much else, so she tried to enjoy the sun on her back for as long as she could, eventually falling into a light slumber.
Her eyes still closed, lightly napping on the bench, she heard a creek next to her, her eyes not opening to the movement. A sweet voice spoke out, “Are you okay?” Scootaloo’s eyes opened slowly, she recognized the voice as she awoke from her nap. “Sorry I’m late, There was a long line at the store, and I had to...” He was interrupted as the mare lunged herself into the large male. Winston blinked twice, and looked down, hugging her back not daring to question the moment. “Well, I’m sorry, I was stuck in line at the Grass Flats, I picked us up some hot lunch.” The familiar mid-western accent made her giddy and happy.
All feelings of toil had instantly been tossed to the side. The two trotted to a small clearing under a tree, to a blanket that had already been laid underneath a tree. Winston pulled the food containers from his saddlebags. He pulled out some Grilled Petunia sandwiches a jar of fresh honey. “Here is our lunch.” He cracked a warm smile. “Such a long wait for two pieces of bread and honey, huh?” He laughed with a soft low tone. His ear twitched as a light breeze kicked up again.
Scootaloo nodded to him, and smiled with a feeling of joy, and relief that he had arrived. “Yeah, you had me really worried.” her voice seemed more soft than usual, relaxing in the fact that he hadn’t stood her up. She took the food that was hoofed her way. Winston cracked the small jar of honey, and took two spoons, passing one to the female. they both topped their food with the golden liquid, and ate. It was silent, but... right. It was just such a mood that didn’t call for talking. The shy girl had her sandwich close, as she looked to him, a small blush on her face. Strange to some how much she had changed over the years, moving from an outgoing pony, to a recluse over the course of her mare-hood.
Eventually they had both finished, the first to speak was Winston. “So how did you enjoy it? I right love the food here in town, coming from Foalton, I had always gotten farm food. We don’t have a deli back home. So this is a change for me.”
“Yeah, It is nice having modern comforts around, It is wonderful being able to eat when I can.” She said, realizing that it didn’t come out correctly.
Winston nodded in reply. “Yes, it is, if the harvest doesn’t there is no worry of going hungry.
She pondered at that, she didn’t even realise the benefit of living in a town. “I didn’t even think of that.” She felt kind of embarrassed for not realising what he had meant.
The garbage cleaned up, the two walked to an empty section of the field. They lowered to their fetlocks simultaneously, and looked at each other. Scootaloo instinctively leaned against him and sighed deeply. One of happiness, relief, relaxation, and most of all, comfort. Funny thing, that would be the biggest part of this for her, that she would be comfortable with him.
Winston moved his head to Scootaloo and nuzzled softly. He pulled her head up, and kisses her snout softly and smiled.
She smiled in return. And nuzzled him back. The day was perfect. Nothing but a chance to lay with him. And be silent, and comfortable. She could see herself spending a lot of time with him. As much time as she could give.
The sun breached the horizon, its orange glow bounced off of the wakes on a pond in the distance, the trees blew in the soft breeze, soft rustling could be heard among the dying activity in the park.
Winston cocked a smile, prepared to make a corny comment. “Do you know why the sunset is so beautiful?” He laughed out softly, denoting a joking tone to his words.
Scootaloo looked over to him, and smiled, replying, “What?”
Winston chuckled as he answered. “Well, that’s because the sunset has the same colors as you.” His informal dialect gave a sense of sincerity.
Scootaloo blushed shyly and her throat cracked unable to reply at the moment, as she looked to see the amber and purple sky above. “Thank you.” She managed to choke out. She felt warm inside, and her stomach wouldn’t stop its constant fluttering. She looked down, realising she had never complimented him in return. She leaned on him a little bit more closely and hid her face behind her hair. “And you are a wonderful stallion.” She shied herself from looking into his eyes. The sun had finally set over the hills in the distant lands, she felt good, and happy. Her shell started to peel away slowly in these short moments. ‘I want him to be mine forever.’
Spacegirl - Chapter 5
Scootaloo arose early in the morning, stretching her tired limbs. After laying a soft kiss on Winston’s cheek, she slid from under the covers and landed on all fours. She moved her hoof to her mouth as she yawned, stretching once more in the sun of the early morning as it broke through her bedroom windows. Scootaloo trotted downstairs to prepare some breakfast for the two before Winston awoke from his slumber. She returned and placed a tray which held various breakfast goods onto the bed. She sat on the edge of the bed next to Winston, and smiled. Slowly leaning over him, she kissed his forehead whilst speaking softly. “Wake up honey.” She said with a caramel demure.
Winston opened his eyes and started yawning and stretching as he was pulled out of his sleep. “Good morning, Beautiful,” He yawned again, laying his hooves on his lap. Noticing the food filled tray next to him he asked, “And, may I ask, why the sweetest pony alive brought me breakfast in bed?”
She sighed as her head lowered in disappointment. She pointed at the day to day calender and raised her brow, hoping to jog his memory, but received only a head tilt in reply. Scootaloo shook her head and placed it on her hoof. “Anniversary?” She said with a bit of irk. “Married two years?”
Winston looked from the tray, to the calendar, then back to Scootaloo and blinked. “I am so sorry, honey... I am so sorry. I had a really hard day at work yeste-” He was interrupted with a ‘shush’ and a hoof to his lips.
“You know I can’t stay mad at you.” She kissed his snout and giggled softly. “Besides, I can take an I-owe-you.”
Winston brought his hoof to the back of his head and rubbed on his mane softly, his cheeks reddened from embarrassment. “Definitely, hun.” He laughed nervously and cautiously reached for the tray, making sure his blunder didn’t keep him from his meal. Scootaloo nodded as Winston grabbed the tray hungrily, smiling as she walked to the door. “Meet me downstairs when you’re done, and clean your dishes ‘kay?” She lightly sung out as a joke, heading down stairs.
A few minutes later he followed, tray in mouth, bringing the recently dirtied kitchenware to the sink. Scootaloo smiled to herself as she heard the sound of running water emit from the other room. She laughed as Winston exited shortly after. “I see you took my advice,” She laid on the couch her face resting against a raised hoof. “So, did you have anything in mind to do today, before you head off to the farm?”
An hour later, Winston headed out the door. Scootaloo watched her lover exit the door as she stretched, having enjoyed their activity over the last hour. She sat upright, and stretched once more. She gave the empty house a once over before heading to her workshop to to finish up some project drafting.
The workshop had been completely remodeled, with a welding, lathing, and steel press, along with her old drafting desk, and the stacks of various trinket’s blueprints. On the walls in the room were two whiteboards, each having a long series of mathematics calculations written across them. She looked at an equation for a moment, then trotted to her lathe. She spun an already shaped piece of metal, looking at the calculations on the wall, she slowly tapped the rod, shaping it, and glanced back to the board, then prodding once more. This slow, meticulous process went on for another three hours, before she sighed and stepped back. She took a micrometer and measured the razor thin width of the metal whilst smiling to herself. “Three days, oh my Celestia... this piece took forever.” She held the hourglass shaped piece of metal, placing it in another, more bullet shaped piece of metal, fitting a few different tubes and wires through it, and welding it into place. She then forced a small metal block into the tube, attaching some of the various wires and tubes into it, securing them with Teflon and solder.
Scootaloo wiped some sweat off of her face, some grease from her hooves made a small smear on her right cheek. She slunk down to the ground and sighed as she stretched once more. Standing up, she looked at the large chunk of metal, scanning it over.
Satisfied, she placed a metal plate on it, one matching the other’s long cone-like shape. She used the micrometer to measure all around, making sure the edges were aligned perfectly. After some minor sanding, she welded it into place, and sanded off the lip. She then laid the machine onto a precision scale, adding small weights on the inside until it matched the target density. She took a flared metal tube and welded it to the bottom of the shell, then carefully measured a small distance to the right of the tube and drilled a small hole. Using forceps, she clamped and pulled a small rubber tube through the newly drilled hole, capping the tube with a one-way membrane.
She stepped back and looked at it, a smile of pride stretched over her face. She looked at the weight again, shaving a few layers from the tube, hitting the desired mass once again.
She exited the room and brought in some leather straps from the living room, and secured them using designated rivet-holes in various areas around the design. She lifted the design up and turned it around and inspected the device a few times over, checking for any flaws, passing an hour with this task.
Looking out the window, the day had long passed noon. She put the machine into a padded box, a snug fit for her design. Scootaloo put the box on a cart and tied a little harness around her chest. She exited her house, dragging the small cart behind her, locking her door on the way out. Scootaloo cantered down the streets of Ponyville, slowly making her way to Sweet Apple Acres.
Upon arrival, Scootaloo was met with a greeting from Applejack rocking in a chair on the porch. The amber and orange leaves blew softly in the September breeze. Various farmhands were out in the fields tilling including Winston, she threw him a short wave, then received one in reply. Applejack’s hair was beginning to grey out some, the once strong and robust mare’s health degraded with her age, and she had fallen sickly the last few years. “Howdy sugarcube!” she said as she waved.
Scootaloo replied with a cheery wave. “I’m just looking for Apple Bloom. Is she around?” Scootaloo approached the porch of the barn and unhooked the harness, letting the cart stand freely in the yard.
“Yeah, she’s inside, Apple Bloom had a long day painting the barn today.” Applejack smiled as she spoke, her wrinkled eyes and mouth as perky as they ever were. “Just go on in, you’re family to us.”
Applejack went back to rocking and Scootaloo nodded, proceeding to head inside. As she entered the house, a wonderful Apple scent wafted generously about. Instantly, Scootaloo turned to the kitchen to see Bloom squeezing the fresh autumn apples into cider, with a pie in the oven. “I thought Applejack said you had a long day.” Scootaloo smirked slightly, giving her friend a soft hug.
“Ha, all I did was paint. That ain’t hard work.” She said. She still had a few splotches of paint dabbed around her face and arms. “Besides, I think the family could do with some fresh cider and pie.” Apple Bloom broke the hug and turned back to crushing the apples. A loud ding went off, startling Scootaloo. Apple Bloom took the pie and sat it in the windowsill too cool off. She pulled her gloves off and sat them on the table. “So, you must be here for something.”
“Well, You’ll never guess what I did.” She smiled in a cocky way, she had been invigorated with new life recently, as hers was all starting to get back on track, she was becoming less shy to the world, and more out there, becoming more how she had used to be.
“What would that be, sugarcube?” Apple Bloom replied.
“Well, I finished my prototype, I am going to go try it out today.” She smiled once more, becoming ecstatic.
“Proto-what now? OH! You mean the rocket thingy? You’re still doing that?” She said, laughing a little bit.
Scootaloo’s face took to a flat. “Yes.... I am.” She was a little bit disheartened.
“Well, did you want to try it out?” Bloom said, slightly eager to see the results.
“Yeah, I have it outside, come on, I am gonna do some testing, but I need to use the fields around Sweet apple acres, is that okay?” She said, butting on an overextended smile in an attempt to silently beg.
“Sure thing Scoots, just watch out for the trees.”
The two had made their way to the large empty field at the edge of the farm. They pulled the crate off of the cart and opened it, setting the pack on the ground. Apple Bloom instantly gave the contraption a discrediting look. Scootaloo twisted the top off of the contraption and hit a switch, and instantly the sound of an engine roared in the silent field. She replaced the cap and sat the pack upright, exhaust seeped through the tail pipe. She pulled a little armature out that had a small red slider. She pushed the slider up slightly, and the engine sputtered once and kicked in, picking up faster and faster into a speedy rotation. She extended the slider up a slight bit more, and the pack rose into the air, almost in a hover. Scootaloo turned the throttle down all the way. “I’m ready...” Scootaloo said, taking a gulp in hesitation.
Apple Bloom nodded in silent understanding. Scootaloo buckled the straps around her joints, and had Apple Bloom secure it into place. She readied herself, took a deep breath, and slowly moved the throttle up. She felt a soft tug, lurching her forward, then took a step forward and pleated herself. Once again, she slid the throttle slider forward. She lunged forward and galloped to keep up with the speed of the thrust. She hit the throttle and leaned back, jumping simultaneously. She picked up into the air and smiled. She was happy moving fast, doing what a Pegasus was born to do. She twisted some, the little wings on the pack helped her to change direction. She turned back, nearing the ground to land. As she got closer, the engine began to slow, and cut out completely. The brakes were unable to be deployed. She fell the ten feet between her and the ground at the speed set by the device on her back, and she couldn’t do anything... Anything but brace herself. The wings kept her in a glide. She closed her eyes, bracing for impact.
Scootaloo opened her eyes, the outside world bled in, slowly taking shape around her. She looked around. Nurse Redheart stood by her bedside, and Winston was on the bench next to the bed, sleeping. As she came to bearings, her head began to throb. She was unable to move her legs or her hooves. At a second glance, Apple Bloom was sitting in the same room near the other bed. Further to Scoot’s examination, she spotted Applejack. But, Applejack was laying down in the bed opposite to hers. She blinked once, and whispered weakly. “Wh.. what happened to Applejack?”
The nurse took her attention from the machines, and bent down. “Oh, you’re awake!”
“Yeah... I am... what happened to Applejack?” She said, more concerned for her friend than herself.
“You rest, needn’t worry about her right now; focus on your own recovery.” Replied the nurse. She moved to Winston, nudging him to wake up. The grey pony raised his head and yawned, still tired from being up for so long at Scootaloo’s bedside. “She’s awake,” The nurse pony told Winston with a sweet voice.
“Really?” He said groggily. “‘Bout time.” he stated, looking at Scootaloo.
“Yeah, I’m fine... How long was I out?” Her voice was low and weak.
“About three and a half days.” Winston said. “Almost four.” He rubbed his eyes and stood up, making his way to her bedside.
“What happened to Applejack?” Scootaloo asked once more.
“I’ll go get Bloom to explain what happened.” Winston said, as he made his way to Apple Bloom, shaking her a bit to wake her up. She had almost the same reaction as him. “Scootaloo’s awake.” he whispered.
She smiled softly, rubbing her eyes, “Really? ‘Bout time.” She stretched out as she stood up. She trotted to Scootaloo’s bedside, rubbing the broken mare’s mane softly. “How are you felling hun?” She said, a hint of worry in her voice. “You took quite a fall.”
“What is wrong with Apple Jack?” Is all Scootaloo could say. She wasn’t able to fixate on her own condition.
“Well, the stress of what happened to you got to Applejack, she felt mad at herself for letting you do that.” She sighed. “She went to the field and tried to buck apples to relieve some of her bottled frustration.”
“So... so I caused this?” Scootaloo said, she felt more responsible for Applejack’s state than she should be.
“No, and don’t think you are, that was of her own choice. So don’t you worry yourself about that, you need rest okay? Besides, the doctors said she will be fine in a few days time.” Apple Bloom ended her rant with a huff, “Sorry.”
A few days had passed, Scootaloo could now sit up, and move about on her own accord, but was still rendered immobile, besides the wheelchair she was figuratively tied to. Every day she had sat at Applejack’s bedside and comforted her as as the old mare slowly recovered.
Scootaloo did small things to improve the Applejack’s comfort, days spent helping adjust pillows, or making small talk, though sometimes Applejack couldn’t respond with much more than a smile under her wheezing.
And another week soon passed. She was in beginners physical therapy now, but was still not ready for release. Now able to walk under the aid of crutches, she was nearly at her release day, two more days; and Applejack had been taking a turn for the better as well.
Soon came her day, three weeks in the hospital. Needing nothing but the pain medication, and a bit of walking aid. She felt lucky to have gotten nothing worse than minor fractures and internal damage, which had quickly healed itself. The only lingering injury was a sprained shoulder joint, which would have to stay under sling for a few more weeks.
Even after receiving her release forms, she stayed with Applejack as her condition started to decline a small amount. The wheezing and small groaning had resumed, and she had begun vomiting after eating as well.
Scootaloo looked down on the proud mare with slight pity. She still felt she had done this to Applejack, albeit indirectly.
A long robotic tone went off which at first startled and confused Scootaloo, so sudden. She had quickly realised what was happening as a commotion was heard from down the hall, she turned to the various monitors at the bed-stand, seeing some of the meters declining into a red state; yet nothing flat-lined, ‘She will be okay, right?’ She thought to herself.
Two nurses walked in, rolling Scootaloo’s wheelchair away from the bed so they could work. Scootaloo was unable to react, her eyes just stayed open, she was unfazed by her surroundings, unblinking, her mouth stayed propped open, and a single tear escaped the corner of her eye.
The red-lines stabilized, but the nurses looked down in anguish. One whispered lowly, “Call the family... She will pass soon...”
Apple Bloom appeared in the hospital room shortly after. Already in exasperated tears when she arrived. She sat on a stool next to the bed and hugged Applejack softly. Apple Bloom cried at the bedside, unable to speak in lieu of the situation. The meters and gauges fell slowly. Applejack growing more incoherent and limp with each passing minute. The orange pony’s bedding was wet with the secrete from Apple Bloom’s eyes and nose, she was unable to quit the sobs. She sat at the bedside, her tall blue husband, and young daughter hung back at the doorway, not wanting to disturb Applejack’s final moments with her sister. Little Fritter looked down, her blond hair moving over her face. She spoke lowly to her father, “Is grammy going to be okay?” She looked back up, meeting her father’s eyes with an innocent curiosity as to why her mother was so sad. The blue earth pony put his hoof on her mane, not answering the filly with anything but a rub to the head.
Scootaloo had not talked or moved since the nurses had rolled her back, still in shock of the sudden turn in Applejack’s health. She had been doing fine the day prior, and Scootaloo couldn’t wrap her head around why anything would change for the worse. A nurse walked in and shut off the various monitors hooked to the pony, removing cables, so she could pass in comfort.
Ten minutes had soon passed, silence befell the room, aside from the light sobs of Apple Bloom. The few short minutes had seemed like an eternity. Applejack eyed around the room once, looking at the family that had come to see her off.
Some sweat formed on the rim of Applejack’s grey and blond mane. Her eyes closed, her breathing continued. She struggled but managed to speak once. “I l-love y-you... Sugar c-cube.” She followed this with a weak pat to Apple Bloom’s mane. Apple Bloom looked up at her sister.
“I-I Love y-you t-too, sis.” Her tears continued to stream down her face, the rate slowing some. “Please don’t leave me.” She added, her voice squeaked under her crying. “P-please don’t go,” She held onto her sisters hoof in a light grip, and let out an audible stream of sobs. “P-please.” She continued to beg and plead for her beloved sister.
Applejack took another look around the room, seeing Scootaloo hanging her head, tears flowing from the purple haired Pegasus. “I-its not your fault.” She coughed, slinking into a long, awkward coughing fit.
Scootaloo looked up in response to the words. Only speaking out with, “I’m sorry.” It was somewhat of an apology, still feeling guilty for the outcome of her stunt, but more-so in pity.
Applejack loosened up suddenly, moving her vision back to Apple Bloom, her wheezing had stopped, as had her coughing. She closed her eyes and took a deep breath. Then another. She adjusted her head with a small movement, and her chest stopped expanding. It slowly shrunk, not to come back up. Applejack’s forelegs went limp, and her head slowly rolled to the side.
Apple Bloom fell into a final bout of sobbing...
“Please don’t leave me!” She yelled out in her sobbing, “Please don’t leave me.” She said again, this was said low, inaudible to anyone but Apple Bloom.