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NTBN 3 (Blending In)

By JekyllorHyde
Created: 19th December 2020 01:37:14 AM

  1. NTBN 3 [Blending In]
  2.  
  3. >Eyes closed, you take a minute to work yourself up before taking your first hesitant steps onto the road ahead.
  4. >Keeping your head low, you deftly weave your way through the crowd, no real direction or destination in mind.
  5. >Right now your primary directive is to learn the layout of the area.
  6. >While you would like to learn more about the biological and ecological marvels of this world that you are sure exist, your foremost objective is to blend in. Knowing the lay of the land will help immensely with that.
  7. >As you pass by a myriad of unique ponies, you scan either side of the street. Internally you begin to form a map of the street as you move along.
  8. >All begins fine, though it quickly becomes apparent that it won’t work. Each time you turn your head to see either side of the street, your obnoxiously long mane gets flipped into your face, breaking your concentration and interrupting the entire process.
  9. >Fuck. It’s times like this that make you wish you were a biomorph instead of an exasite. At least then you would be able to make your mane shorter permanently.
  10. >Whatever.
  11. >Putting your annoyance aside, there’s no way you’ll be able to map out shit accurately like this.
  12. >It’ll have to wait until later, when you find a way to get your mane under control.
  13. >You let out an audible sigh and study the base of your right hoof as you walk.
  14. >Well, at the very least you do still have an instant way back to Discord’s house, so you can explore without the worry of getting lost.
  15. >Continuing down the road, you mull over your options.
  16. >Your first plan is bust. That means you should probably see if any of these shops sell maps instead.
  17. >Venturing forward, your eyes are consistently turned towards the signs on the shops.
  18. >Let’s see…
  19. >Hats...
  20. >Furniture…
  21. >Quills and sofas…?
  22. >...
  23. >...alright…
  24.  
  25. >Eventually one sign in particular does manage to catch your eye.
  26. >A picture of an icy-blue leaf.
  27. >The building attached certainly stands out to say the least.
  28. >Constructed from dark wood and roofed with teal shingles, it stands with a normal, cozy air about itself. The one outstanding feature of the entire affair, however, are the windows. They shimmer and shine, being made of stained glass, the amalgamous colors intertwining in bewildering ways. A few ordinary tables are seated on either side of the door, which just so happens to be propped open with a wooden stopper, beckoning you to enter.
  29. >This one might have some kind of indiginous plants! What else could a leaf be a symbol for?
  30. >You go to take your first step towards the building, but catch yourself, slapping yourself, physically and mentally.
  31. >No!
  32. >No messing around! You need to find a map shop!
  33. >Quickly, you trot on past the shop, only to find yourself stopped and regrettably looking back at the icy leaf.
  34. >With something like magic existing here, you can only imagine what kind of strange life can exist...
  35. >How many new things there could be to know...
  36. >...
  37. >......
  38. >.........Maybe just a little detour couldn’t hurt…
  39. >You spin around and excitedly make your way into the building.
  40.  
  41. >As your eyes adjust to the lower light level of the interior, you can start to make out the nature of your environment.
  42. >Just enough light meanders its way though the colorful stained glass to allow you to see comfortably. Standing in the center of the area are rows of open shelves, allowing you to see though the glass bail jars lined up neatly on each of them. The contents of each jar spans from liquids to powders, each color as unique as the last. A support beam stretches up from the center of the room, connecting to a perpendicular beam spanning from one side of the structure to the other. The ceiling, very much like a barn, is the roof itself, leaving everything feeling very open. The only other furnishing in the room is a small counter, at which a clerk should reside.
  43. >Wearily, you make your way closer to the jars on the shelf in front of you.
  44. >There’s no way for you to tell what any of the contents might be without making direct contact with them, though given the overwhelming smell of this place, you can take your best guess.
  45. “Tea?”
  46. >”Yup indeedy.”
  47. >Besides your heart almost jumping out of your throat, you give no reaction to the sudden voice, freezing where you stand.
  48. >A female voice, gentle and playful, resounds throughout the room.
  49. >”We sell a whole lot more than just tea though.”
  50. >This time, in response to the voice, you anxiously turn to find it’s source.
  51. >A hot second later, and you’ve located it. Just above you, lying on the beam is a pegasus. Her amethyst eyes pierce through the dim lighting and into your soul. Her coat glistens appealingly with a rich shade of teal. The orderly mane and tail on her are two toned, the dominant color being that of a deep, vibrant cobalt and the secondary being a delightful hue of minty green. Upon her flank sits the same icy leaf from the sign outside.
  52.  
  53. >She rolls to her side, off of the beam.
  54. >In one swift motion, she rights herself with her wings, landing before you with nary a creak of the floorboards.
  55. >You internally stand dumbfounded at the expertise with which the move was executed.
  56. >Seeing something like that makes you look forward to getting to use your own wings.
  57. >Further thoughts are cut off by the mare's warm voice.
  58. >”We also happen to sell herbs and spices. Basically anything you could want from a plant, we have.”
  59. >She pauses before shaking her head rapidly for a moment.
  60. >”Sorry, I’m getting ahead of myself!”
  61. >Sitting, she extends a single hoof out to you with a smile.
  62. >”My name is Mint Breeze, but you can call me Minty. What’s your name?”
  63. >You cautiously bump her hoof with your own.
  64. “...Flux.”
  65. >”Flux huh? A little strange, but fitting for the new colt on the block I suppose.”
  66. >Well at least your not the only one that thinks it’s a wei-
  67. >Wait…
  68. “How did you know I’m new?”
  69. >Minty gives you a carefree shrug.
  70. >”Ponyville isn’t exactly big. Everypony knows everypony else, so new faces stick out more than you think.”
  71. >Fuck.
  72. >You had one job.
  73. >Lay low. Blend in.
  74. >That’s not hard, especially not for you, but it seems that nothing will change that you stand out by just existing in this town.
  75. >That’s fine, you’ll just have to lay even lower and mind where you step.
  76. “I guess that makes sense…”
  77. >Vigorously nodding her head, she lets out a sound of agreement.
  78. >”It sure does, especially since we don’t get a whole lot of travelers around here. Speaking of that, you mind me asking where you come from?”
  79. >Out of all the questions she could’ve asked, that is probably the best one, if only because you can completely deflect it.
  80.  
  81. “I… don’t really want to talk about it…”
  82. >You say it with all the sadness you can muster into a single sentence.
  83. >Almost instantly, Minty seems to have recognized her mistake.
  84. >”Oh, I’m sorry! I didn’t mean to pry!”
  85. >That would never work back on Tetra.
  86. >Fortunately, here social interactions function similarly to that of humans, so empathy exists for you to play off of.
  87. >But that doesn’t mean you should get comfortable around these ponies.
  88. >Anyone and everyone is out for their own benefit.
  89. >You must never forget that…
  90. “No, it’s fine…”
  91. >You turn to leave.
  92. “I should probably get going. I have to find a map shop before-“
  93. >Minty flies in front of you quickly.
  94. >”Wait! Let me make it up to you for being so rude. I can draw you a map. That way, you won’t need to go to the other side of town and pay for one!”
  95. >Her smile gleams with a yearning hopefulness.
  96. >You really should get out of here. Prolonged exposure to this mare could result in more prying questions. Additionally, there is only a slim chance that her offer of help will come to you for free.
  97. >However, with no way to orient yourself and no money, her offer is the best you have at the moment.
  98. >Besides, you should be able to fend off any offending inquiries from her if they should come up.
  99. >You just need to fill your role.
  100. >Play your part.
  101. >Keep up the act.
  102. >Stay on your toes.
  103. >Do that and you’ll be fine…
  104. “O-Okay…”
  105. >She jumps with joy.
  106. >”Perfect! Let me just go get some paper and a pencil!”
  107. >She runs off towards the counter to fetch her items, leaving you a moment to mull over the situation.
  108. >While her general actions fall under human social obligations, her excitement at the prospect raises a red flag for you.
  109. >Not even in human society would reparations be considered a positive thing…
  110. >There must be something for her to gain from this.
  111. >The realization gives you half a mind to run out the door while she is ducking her head beneath the counter.
  112.  
  113. >But where would you go?
  114. >What would you do?
  115. >Go back to Discord’s house?
  116. >Fuck that!
  117. >But with no way to navigate, you would just be aimlessly wandering if you left at this point.
  118. >And she mentioned getting a map on the other side of town, so it’s unlikely you would stumble upon that by chance alone.
  119. >Your chances of discovering anything of value fall improbably low without knowing where you’re going.
  120. >No, you’ll have to stick this one out, at least until you get a map.
  121. >If things go south, then you can bail...
  122. >She quickly returns with both a piece of paper and a pencil.
  123. >Spitting the former onto the floor in front of you and laying down, she begins drawing lines and rectangles while intermittently clarifying what each shape represents.
  124. >She harps on about some apple vendor and how they are always willing to help others out for some reason, but she eventually moves on with the rest of the area.
  125. >Slowly, you archive all of the data relayed to you, as well as the picture of the map itself.
  126. >You also archive the thing about the apple vendor. It’s irrelevant, but any form of help may prove useful in the future.
  127. >She spits out the pencil and points to her latest rectangle.
  128. >”And this last one is Sugarcube Corner. It’s Ponyville’s very own sweets shop. If you've got the time, I would say stop there. I’m sure Pinkie would love to meet you.”
  129. “Pinkie?”
  130. >She nods frantically.
  131. >”Yup! She’s our local baker and party planner. She always throws a big party for any new ponies in town, so I’m sure you’ll be on the top of her list!”
  132. >She taps her hooves together lightly with a smile.
  133.  
  134. >Fuck.
  135. >You’ll need to account for this.
  136. >Standing out is one thing, but being the center of attention is another.
  137. >Whatever, it’s still simple enough. You’ll just have to avoid this Pinkie.
  138. “Well, what does she look like? I’ll keep an eye out for her so she doesn’t miss me.”
  139. >She raises an eyebrow at you.
  140. >You feel as if you’ve made an error, though it only takes a minute of thinking for you to realize the blatancy of your idiocy.
  141. “Oh right... PINK-ie…”
  142. >You mentally facepalm.
  143. >Minty lets out an amused giggle before bonking you lightly on your forehead.
  144. >”Indeedy-do.”
  145. >Standing, she turns and steps behind the counter once more.
  146. >”Anyways, now that that’s out of the way, would you like to sit down and have a cup of tea? We have the freshest in all of Ponyville!”
  147. >Tea...
  148. >Well, it would be another new experience to check off the list.
  149. >You wouldn’t mind sitting down for a-
  150. >A self designated metal slap comes to you.
  151. >What the fuck are you talking about?
  152. >You have what you need.
  153. >Time to bail, before things take a turn for the worst with this sketchy mare.
  154. “Sorry, but I really should get back to my dad. He’s probably wondering where I am.”
  155. >For a moment, a look of disappointment crosses her face
  156. >”Oh. Okay… I guess I’ll see you around th-”
  157. >You’re already out the door and on your way down the street before she can finish her sentence.
  158. >You let out an audible sigh.
  159. >Whatever that mare’s game was, it doesn’t make any sense to you.
  160. >Who would give you what you’re after before they get something out of you first?
  161. >She must have either been completely clueless or able to spot your situation from a mile away.
  162. >Given that she almost succeeded at drawing you in at the end there, you’re inclined to say that it’s the latter.
  163. >You’ll have to be more wary of her in the future.
  164.  
  165. >Whatever. At least you have your map now.
  166. >Well, actually you left the piece of paper back at the shop, but you do have the image archived.
  167. >Running a search for ‘map’ returns with a plethora of information, varying from old Tetra maps to near infinitely spanning biological maps built right into your head.
  168. >Performing another search for ‘map_ponyville’ gives you just what you need.
  169. >Now let’s see here…
  170. >Alright, it looks like if you keep going straight you’ll go right past Sugarcube Corner.
  171. >Perfect.
  172. >The sooner you can get past that place and out of the way of this ‘Pinkie’, the sooner you’ll be safe.
  173. >Slowly but surely, as you pass by the various points on the map, you draw closer to the building in question.
  174. >As you do so, your nose catches a whiff of the intoxicating bouquet emanating from the building itself.
  175. >The scent alone is almost enough to draw you in.
  176. >Commanding your olfactory system to fuck off for a minute proves to be enough to get you past the obstacle with no complications.
  177. >You don’t take your eyes off of the building until your vertebrae complain.
  178. >Allowing your sense of smell to return and facing forward once more, your vision is suddenly filled with a color that makes your stomach churn. Accompanying it is a faint, sweet smell that you associate with the few pastries that you’ve had since you’ve been here. The contact gives you a brief sight into a new energy. One of bubbling whimsy.
  179.  
  180. -------------------------
  181.  
  182. >For a moment there is a high-pitched voice but it quickly fades into the distance as you break into a sprint.
  183. >The direction doesn’t matter. As long as you can put distance between you and that pony.
  184. >ONE!
  185. >FUCKING!
  186. >JOB!!!
  187. >You dash past vendors and weave your way through the gaps between the buildings into an entirely new street.
  188. >”Wait! Come baaaack!”
  189. >Fuck! She’s following you!
  190. >You quickly focus on your legs, increasing the muscle density within them.
  191. >With this new strength, you blaze by ponies and stands like a blur.
  192. >There’s no way she should be able to catch you no-
  193. >”Stop RUNNIIIIING!!!”
  194. >THAT’S NOT FUCKING POSSIBLE!
  195. >You spare only a moment to glance back and see the bubblegum colored mare in your peripherals.
  196. >Fuck!
  197. >At this rate you’ll just exhaust yourself before you can outrun her.
  198. >You need to hide!
  199. >But where?
  200. >You quickly search your archives for the only word you can think of: ‘help’.
  201. >To your surprise, a single word is returned to you: ‘apple’.
  202. >That’s right!
  203. >You locate the apple vendor’s location and plot a course for it.
  204. >But if you’re gonna get help, you’ll need to lose this mare, if even for a minute.
  205. >You turn a corner back into a space between some buildings, however instead of continuing your path forward, you swiftly leap up to the roof of the structure, just in time for the crazed mare to come flying around the bend after you.
  206. >Luckily for you, she keeps her pace, now following nothing but empty air.
  207. >As soon as she’s out of sight, you hop back to the ground and blitz your way towards the apple vendor.
  208. >The whole journey there shows no signs of the pink mare, though something tells you that her dedication to catching you won’t end with your simple psych out.
  209.  
  210. >You finally come to a screeching halt before the apple stand as your legs atophe back into their natural muscular structure.
  211. >Behind the stand sits an orange mare with a blond mane and tail, both of which are bound into their own loose ponytails - no pun intended. Her eyes are a light sap green.
  212. >She looks at you joyfully, apparently not noticing your full on sprint before.
  213. >She speaks with an accent equivalent to that of a stereotypical human ‘cowboy’.
  214. >”Howdy there sugarcube. Is there anything I can do for ya?”
  215. >You blurt out the first words that come to mind.
  216. “I need to hide!”
  217. >The vendor is taken aback by the nature of your words.
  218. >”Huh? What are ya hidin’ from?”
  219. >Once more, the urgency of the situation drives only the name from your mouth.
  220. “Pinkie!”
  221. >”Pinkie? Hold up a minute, why would you wanna go and hide from Pinkie?”
  222. >Fuck, you may have jumped the gun!
  223. >Enhancing your hearing, you can clearly pick out a single set of hoofbeats from a distance.
  224. >She’s closing in!
  225. >Fuck it, no time for back tracking now.
  226. >It’s all or nothing at this point.
  227. “She wants to throw me a party and I-I get really nervous in big crowds. Please, can you help me?”
  228. >You kick it up to eleven with the puppy dog eyes for maximum effect.
  229. >She thinks for a moment before looking with anxiousness into the distance behind you.
  230. >You can guess what she sees without having to look.
  231. >Just as you prepare to meet your fate, the vendor leans over her stand and, grabbing you by your mane, plops you into a convenient barrel of apples next to her.
  232. >No words need to be exchanged, you understand her choice.
  233. >Hurriedly, you worm your way as deep into the barrel as you can until you hear familiar hoofsteps drawing closer.
  234.  
  235. >With your advanced hearing, you make out a sort of sniffing sound coming from her direction.
  236. >Is she tracking your scent!?
  237. >What the fuck is up with this mare!?
  238. >Soon enough, you hear the vendor speak up as the sniffing draws closer.
  239. >”Uh, heya Pinkie. Anything in particular you’re looking for?”
  240. >Her voice is not the most confident.
  241. >”Yeah actually. You didn’t happen to see a green colt with a black mane run by here did youuuuuu?”
  242. >There is a moment of utter silence before the vendor speaks up again.
  243. >”A colt? Ehehe… Nope, no colt. Not here at least. Haven’t seen one all day. If you’re looking for a colt then you’ll have to ask somepony else, because I haven’t seen em. No way no how!”
  244. >You can hear and smell the drips of sweat running down from the orange mares head.
  245. >That has got to be the worst lie you’ve ever heard.
  246. >You feel like you should just come out at this point.
  247. >There is absolutely no way that-
  248. >”Oki doki loki! Thanks anyway!”
  249. >Slowly, you hear the pink pony trot a distance away.
  250. >...............
  251. >There is no emotion...
  252. >There is only the eternal pain of living in a world where THAT can pass as an acceptable excuse of a lie…
  253. >Unfortunately, further existential dread is postponed by a tapping on the barrel followed by the whispering of the vendor.
  254. >”Hey sugarcube, hold tight in there. It don’t look like she’s goin’ away anytime soon.”
  255. >You already knew that.
  256. >Although her hoofsteps now sound identical to that of the passers by, you can still clearly hear her sniffing in the distance.
  257. >”Just give me a minute. I’ll think of somethin’.”
  258.  
  259. >What feels like hours pass by until you feel the barrel you’re in begin to move.
  260. >You’re being lifted into what is presumably a cart.
  261. >The cart slowly rolls into motion, allowing you to sit for yet another eternity, bouncing to the rhythm of the bumps in the road.
  262. >Though, with each bump, the sniffing and hoofsteps become quieter and quieter, until they are so quiet that not even you can make a distinction of any sound from another.
  263. >Soon enough, there is nothing but bumps, and that is how it remains for a majority of the time…
  264. >As the movement finally starts to slow to a halt, you hear the same tapping as before on the barrel.
  265. >”Alright, you can come on out.”
  266. >You hesitantly wiggle your way to the surface of the sea of shiny red fruits and peer out into the new environment.
  267. >Still in the back of the cart, you are now on what appears to be a farm with a large barn… house… thing... in front of you.
  268. >Surrounding you is a plethora of apple trees, most of which you whisper the names of to yourself, though there are a few that return inconclusive results off of visual analysis alone.
  269. >A pleasantly sweet aroma fills the air. It relaxes your senses and grants you a sort of peace of mind.
  270. >”Welcome to Sweet Apple Acres! You can lay low here and give Pinke some time to cool down. She can sometimes get a little… over the top with new ponies.”
  271. >The mare chuckles to herself.
  272. >You turn towards the orange pony, scanning her over more thoroughly than you had before.
  273. >She is an earth pony, and her cutie mark is that of three bright red apples with small, verdant leaves topping them.
  274. >Who would’ve guessed?
  275. >Honestly, selling apples, ‘Sweet Apple Acres’, apples on her. You wouldn’t be surprised if she has ‘apple’ in her na-
  276.  
  277. >”I don’t think we’ve gotten a chance to get acquainted yet have we? My name’s Applejack, what’s yours?”
  278. >A deep breath followed by a sigh punctuates your disappointment in this world.
  279. >Applejack...
  280. >Archived.
  281. “I’m Flux.”
  282. >”Well it’s mighty fine to meet ya Flux!”
  283. >She stands, turning to the house.
  284. >”Come on in. I’m sure the rest of the family would like to know that we have a guest too.”
  285. >She stumbles over her words for a moment.
  286. >”Well, uh, that is, if it wouldn’t make ya uncomfortable. There’s only three of em.”
  287. >Analysing the situation provides you with a complex set of choices.
  288. >On one hand, seeing as this mare has already provided you all of the services needed, you could decline her offer and leave, avoiding any other trouble in the process.
  289. >On the other hand, you could benefit with a possible mutualistic relationship with this mare.
  290. >The latter is significantly unlikely to come to fruition, assuming that she wouldn’t seek to take advantage of your foolishness in the first place.
  291. >You do still have a way back to Discord’s house if you need it, but...
  292. >No.
  293. >For all intents and purposes, this mare has outstayed her use to you.
  294. >You need to leave while you have a chance.
  295. >Taking a deep breath, you prepare to respond, though you find your senses infiltrated by an alluring scent as you do.
  296. >This, unlike the one from the bakery, is that of REAL food.
  297. >Something that might have the necessary nutrients that your body is currently desperate for.
  298. >Your stomach growls at the prospect, the orange mare apparently taking notice as she smiles warmly.
  299. >”If it makes a difference, Granny’s whippin up some of her four-veggie soup right now. I’m sure she wouldn’t mind fixin ya a bowl if ya want.”
  300. >...
  301. >...you do have a get-out-of-jail-free card if you need it…
  302. >...
  303.  
  304. “That sounds good.”
  305. >A gleeful visage washes over the mares face.
  306. >”Alright then, let’s get a move on.”
  307. >She leads you into the barn-like structure before you as you vigilantly scout the alien surroundings.
  308. >The inside could be described as cozy, warm light laid like a blanket across every inch of each room.
  309. >As you thought, it indeed is a house. The decor consists almost entirely of old-fashioned, wooden furniture, accented by the antique embellishments lining almost every wall, spanning from time-worn photographs to rustic coat hooks.
  310. >Soon enough you come to a similarly decorated dining room. Four empty chairs are pulled up to the square oak table before you, matching placemats set in front of each of them. From a doorway to an adjoining room, you hear clinking of metal accompanied by a bubbling sound and an occasional sizzle.
  311. >Now more than ever you’re yearning for something to eat, if only because of the strength of the enchanting aroma. It is like nothing that you’ve ever experienced before.
  312. >”Granny, we got company! I hope ya made enough for one extra!”
  313. >From the adjacent room you hear an aged, ragged voice call back.
  314. >”One more, eh? Is it Pinkie? You best be tellin’ her to stop using that whoosiewhatzit cannon around the carrots! It’s turnin em bitter!”
  315. >Applejack rolls her eyes in silence before responding.
  316. >”No, it ain’t Pinkie. He’s not from round these parts. And I already told ya, Pinkie’s cannon don’t-”
  317. >”Oooh! Our guest’s a ‘he’? And he’s not from around here? I think I can see what’s goin on. Sit that stallion on down! I’ll have supper fixed up in just a minute!”
  318. >Applejack just makes a face of sheer non understanding, but ultimately shrugs and hops up onto a chair.
  319. >You follow her action, quickly making yourself comfortable on the chair adjacent.
  320.  
  321. >A few more minutes pass before the sounds from the supposed kitchen cease.
  322. >From around the corner of the doorway slowly comes an old green mare with a white mane. Her cutie mark is a pie, presumably of the apple variety if you’ve learned anything from today. On her back are stacked three bowls, steaming and emanating the irresistibly delectable scent you have been overwhelmed with all this time.
  323. >She blindly serves the meals by bumping them up from her back and sliding them right into place with nary a flaw in her execution. Clearly she has done this many times before to form such exquisite muscle memory.
  324. >”Granny Smith, I’d like to introduce you to the new pony in town, Flux.”
  325. >Granny Smith…
  326. >Archived.
  327. >As the green mare takes the seat opposite of you, she finally opens her eyes to have them filled with surprise upon viewing you.
  328. >”Oh… Uh...”
  329. >She nudges Applejack gently as she leans in to whisper to her.
  330. >”I may not be one of them fancy love guru’s or nothin’, but isn't he a bit… young...”
  331. >Applejack gives a bewildered look to Granny before once more speaking up.
  332. >”What in the two hooved, apple-bucking blazes are you talkin’ about? Flux is new in town and it’s our job as members of the Apple family to give him a mighty warm welcome!”
  333. >She ends her speil with an exuberant smile.
  334. >Granny seems a little disappointed, but overall still positive given Applejack’s words.
  335. >”Oh… Well, in that case, welcome to Ponyville there Flicks! I think you’ll be fittin’ in round here just fine.”
  336. >...
  337. “It’s Flux...”
  338. >”Yeah! That’s what I meant! Now, get on eatin’ up! I can see a hungry face from an orchard away, and by the looks of it, you’ll be goin’ hungry before the soup even has a chance to get cold!”
  339.  
  340. >With that both of the mares in front of you take their bowls into their hooves and begin downing the aromatic substance.
  341. >Well, you could sit and ruminate about the consequences that could come about from what you’re about to do, but your stomach has already made up your mind for you. No use in worrying about something that you have no power to change.
  342. >You follow the mares in gulping away at the steaming liquid before you.
  343. >True enough to its name, it really does have four vegetables in it. The chemical composition of them is too far changed for you to tell what any of them actually are, but the look alone would suggest carrots, corn, something like celery, and onions.
  344. >The combination of flavors is like nothing you’ve ever tasted before.
  345. >How have you lived up until this point without knowing something so beautiful?
  346. >It almost brings a tear to your eye.
  347. >So good…
  348. >So good that it takes mere moments for you to find your bowl completely empty as the two other mares are still sipping away at theirs.
  349. >You tap lightly on the table in an attempt to draw their attention.
  350. >Sure enough, both set their bowls back on the table and look at you.
  351. “Can I have some more?”
  352. >Applejack seems to be utterly thrown off by the request.
  353. >”More? There’s no way you finished that whole bowl already!”
  354. >You quickly lift your bowl and turn it upside down for her to see.
  355. >Disbelief covers her face as Granny lets out a chuckle.
  356. >”Weh-he-ell Applejack, I think you’ve got a thing or two ta learn about hungry faces if ya ask me.”
  357. >The green mare rises from her seat before taking your bowl and making her way back to the kitchen.
  358. >”Lucky fer you, I made plenty for the whole family tonight, so there’s more where that came from.”
  359.  
  360. >Applejack suddenly breaks out of her disbelieving stupor to speak up.
  361. >”Speakin of the family, where’s Applebloom and Big Mac? They shoulda been here by now.”
  362. >Granny yells from the other room.
  363. >”Eh, I think Applebloom and her little friends wanted to go campin’ fer the night, and Big Mac volunteered to go with em. They should be back by mornin’ they said.”
  364. >Applejack incoherently mutters something under her breath before shrugging and quickly returning to her meal with gusto.
  365. >Soon enough, Granny returns with two more bowls on her back. She tosses them up onto the table before sliding both of them over to you.
  366. >The action manages to snap you out of your gluttonous stupor for just a moment.
  367. >Why is she giving you so much?
  368. >Social obligations would dictate that she give you only one more bowl when you ask for more…
  369. >Your understanding of social interactions could be miscalculated, but you doubt that.
  370. >No, this mare must want something from you.
  371. >Looking at her, she only holds a gentle smile, winking to you as she returns to what is left of her bowl.
  372. >She should want something, but she’s not pursuing it.
  373. >Perhaps she plans to draw upon this act at a later time to obtain something of value from you…
  374. >Yes, that only makes sense…
  375. >Only one more reason for you to leave this situation before you regret it…
  376. >...
  377. >......
  378. >...well, maybe after you’ve finished what she’s given you…
  379. >BUT NO LATER THAN THAT!!!
  380. >While your mind screams at you to finish the meal and be gone as fast as possible, your stomach, once again, proves to be the one in control here.
  381. >You take just as long to down each bowl as the last, never once missing a single flavor in either of them.
  382.  
  383. >The taste sends your mind into a state of euphoria, so much so that you truly have no idea how long you’ve been sitting at the table, nor how long ago your mind wanted to flee.
  384. >You’re sure there was a reason for you to leave before, but you can’t remember what exactly that was either.
  385. >As you coax the last few drops from the basin of your third bowl, the last of your inhibitions disappear. You lean back into your seat, eyes closed, just taking in this unfamiliar feeling.
  386. >Your stomach. It’s full.
  387. >Your body relaxes into the chair as a warmth washes over you like that of the sun.
  388. >You’re not quite sure you’ve ever felt such a way before in your life.
  389. >This is more than just the feeling of a full stomach.
  390. >You feel…
  391. >...calm…
  392. >There are distant sounds of hooves on the floor and kitchenware clinking and clanking, but none of that can penetrate the blanket of comforting darkness that envelops your mind as you slowly slip away from reality.
  393. >First there is nothing…
  394. >Then there are stars...
  395.  
  396. -------------------------------------------------------
  397.  
  398. >Flux…
  399. >You have so many questions about him…
  400. >Where did he come from?
  401. >Who are his parents?
  402. >WHERE are his parents?
  403. >You thought it would be rude to ask him these things so quickly.
  404. >And now that he’s gone and fallen asleep in his chair, you’ll have to prolong your curiosity at least until tomorrow.
  405. >Well, actually, is it okay for you to let him stay here?
  406. >His parents might already be getting worried since it’s getting dark.
  407. >Maybe you should wake him and-
  408. >Your train of thought it derailed by a soft knock at the door.
  409. “I’ll get it!”
  410. >Granny only gives a soft murmur from the kitchen in response.
  411. >You briskly approach the door and open it.
  412. >You expect another pony to be waiting on the other side, but are only met with nothing but the cool night’s air.
  413. >Taking a quick look around for anypony, you spot something on the ground right below you.
  414. >It’s a folded piece of paper.
  415. >Opening it reveals a set of finely written, cursive words.
  416. >’If it’s alright with you, Flux can stay the night. Love, Dad.’
  417. >The note only manages to raise more questions in your head, but you ultimately accept what it says.
  418. >What else could you do?
  419. >You’re too tired for all this thinking.
  420. >As you are making your way past the table and towards the stairs, you stop to observe the colt at your table.
  421. >Well, tired or not, it wouldn’t be right to let him sleep in that chair all night...
/dad/ SAFE Discord Anon Adventure

NTBN 4 (Stepping Up)

by JekyllorHyde

NTBN 3 (Blending In)

by JekyllorHyde

NTBN 2 (Getting Along)

by JekyllorHyde

NTBN 1 (Chance Meeting)

by JekyllorHyde

Child of Chaos 2 (Getting Acquainted) [Discontinued]

by JekyllorHyde