Another day, another sky to clear. That thought kept passing through Rainbow Dash's mind as she flew about Ponyville kicking clouds. She would look down and see other ponies going about their business, and Rainbow would notice that, once again, other pegasus ponies wouldn't fly as high as her. 'I bet those ponies couldn't reach Cloudsdale if they tried,' she thought to herself.
From this height, she could see the extent of her work, and she figured that it was enough for today. She planned to settle in for a nap, but something caught her attention. This something happened to be a yellow pegasus flying into Ponyville, and while Rainbow knew that her friend, Fluttershy, often flew into town, this was the first time she'd seen her fly at this speed. "She looks like a pony on a mission," Rainbow said.
Opting to investigate instead of taking a nap, she flew down toward her friend.
"Hey Fluttershy," Rainbow Dash shouted, "Where're you off to?"
Slightly shaken Fluttershy looked up to her friend and said, "Oh good morning Rainbow. How was work today?"
"Oh you know, same old same old. I'm more interested in where you're flying in such a hurry."
Fluttershy stopped flying and hovered, "I'm flying faster?"
"You mean you didn't notice?"
Fluttershy shook her head and said, "No. I thought I was flying at my normal pace. I must be anxious to visit Rarity." Fluttershy continued flying towards Rarity shop.
"So, why are you headed to Rarity's?"
"I want to ask her which restaurants Applejack and I should go to."
"Why don't you just pick one at random? I mean I bet they're all the same."
"Well I would like a list so Applejack could, um pick one that she could be more comfortable in," Fluttershy replied.
"Right cause she doesn't feel like she's good enough for those fancy places," Rainbow said rolling her eyes, "I hope you didn't buy that story."
"Why would she lie? And well, she isn't a very good liar. Remember how she was with Pinkie's surprise party?
"Heh yeah that's true. She is a bad liar. So if she didn't lie about why she doesn't like places like that why don't you ask her about it?"
"I'm sure she'll tell me when she's ready," Fluttershy said.
Rainbow stopped Fluttershy and both pegasi faced each other. "Don't you think it's weird that she's keeping this secret from you?"
Fluttershy looked down at the ground and said, "I'm keeping secrets from her too."
"Hey that is not the same thing," Rainbow said louder than she wanted causing some ponies on the ground to look up at the two pegasi. Rainbow lowered her voice to a whisper. "What happened to you was horrible, and you know AJ has thick skin, so there has to be another reason for her dislike of those fancy places."
Fluttershy sighed and said, "Yes but I wonder what made her skin so thick in the first place." Both pegasi continued their way towards Rarity's boutique and she continued, "Applejack has been very patient with me and I know I will be able to one day tell her what happened." Fluttershy looked at Rainbow with a smile and said, "I want to be able to give her the same opportunity."
Rainbow stared at her old friend smiling and asked, "You really care about her don't you?"
If Fluttershy nodded her head any faster it might have fallen off. "Oh yes I do. I fall asleep with a smile and I wake up with a smile. It's great."
Once again, there was that odd jealous feeling in the pit of Rainbow's stomach. As much as she loved seeing Fluttershy happy she did not like being reminded that she was alone. She remembered when she first got that feeling back when she read her story to Fluttershy, Applejack, Twilight, and Spike. She decided to change the subject, "Yeah I'm sure it is. Hey, thanks by the way for helping me with The Jack of All Apples. How did you figure Rarity for a jewel thief?"
Fluttershy just laughed and said, "Oh, well she is very good at finding gems in the ground with her magic so I just thought that would make her a good villain for your story."
Rainbow laughed and said, "Are you gonna put all of our friends into my rogues gallery?"
"Maybe. I wonder what villain I would be."
"What? There is no way I am beating you up Fluttershy."
"It won't be me. Not really. Just a pretend me."
"Well I'm not beating up pretend you either," Rainbow said, "No, I should make your character a confidant of The Dashing Rainbow. Maybe the Chief of Awesome Town Police. Oh no wait! I'll make you President!" Rainbow flew in front of Fluttershy grabbing the yellow pegasus by the face squeezing it into a silly shape, "President Fluttershy! How awesome will that be!?"
Fluttershy pulled away from Rainbow rubbing her face and said, "That sounds. Nice." She noticed that she was about to pass Rarity's boutique and said, "Oh my, I'm here already!" She turned to Rainbow Dash and said, "I'm sorry Rainbow but I must go."
"Don't worry about it Fluttershy," Rainbow said with a smirk, "I got things to do anyway."
"Ok," said Fluttershy, "Enjoy your nap."
Rainbow looked back at the pegasus, rolled her eyes, and flew off. Fluttershy couldn't help but giggle as she flew down to her friend's boutique. She landed at the boutique door and knocked lightly. After a few moments, the door opened and a voice called out.
"Hey Fluttershy," Sweetie Belle said smiling, "What brings you here?"
"Oh," Fluttershy said, "Hello Sweetie Belle. Is your sister home?"
"Sure is," the unicorn filly replied, "C'mon in!"
The Cutie Mark Crusader led Fluttershy up the stairs to Rarity's sewing room. Sure as Applejack was at that moment working hard on the farm, the unicorn was hard at work with a new dress.
"Hey sis," Sweetie Belle shouted, "Fluttershy is here to see you!"
Rarity stopped the machine and looked back her red glasses on and said, "Why hello there Fluttershy! To what do I have the pleasure of your visit?" She turned to her little sister and said with a smile, "Sweetie Belle, go back to your crusader plans."
"Right! Those cutie marks aren't gonna get themselves!"
"You're not planning on going back into," Fluttershy asked with a gulp, "The Everfree Forest are you?"
Sweetie Belle shook her head, "No way! We decided that we will not set a single hoof in that place without you."
"Oh that's goo
," Fluttershy began, "Wait! What?" But the little unicorn was already out the door.
Rarity sighed, "She is so adorable, but a hoof -full. Well now that we have some semblance of privacy, what can I do for you, dear?"
"Well I was wondering if you could, um give me the names of some nice restaurants that Applejack and I could go to," Fluttershy said.
"Certainly," Rarity said, "I know just the place!"
"Well," Fluttershy interrupted, "I would like a list so Applejack could choose a place she would be comfortable in."
Rarity scoffed and said, "That pony seems to be positively allergic to any form of sophistication or class."
"She has plenty of class," Fluttershy said.
Rarity looked at her friend in shock for a moment and said, "My, I knew you were taken by her but I had no idea it was this serious. I apologize, Fluttershy. I suppose I tend to be too hard on Applejack."
Fluttershy smiled and said, "Thank you Rarity. Yes she is very special to me."
"Do you love her," Rarity asked beaming.
Fluttershy blushed and looked away, "Oh, um I don't know. I just know that Applejack is very important to me." Fluttershy nodded happy with the statement.
Rarity smiled and said, "Well that is simply wonderful, darling." The unicorn walked over to a cabinet and used her magic to open it. The doors swung open and Rarity began rummaging through the cabinet mumbling to herself until she squealed, "Ah, here we are."
She had a rather large stack of what appeared to be brochures levitating before her, "There are some leaflets for a few of my favorite restaurants."
Fluttershy looked at the stack and asked in awe, "A f-few?"
"Why yes my dear. After all, if I am to keep up with the fashion world I must keep up with all aspects of culture and that includes fine cuisine." Rarity set the stack down and began separating them. "No, this one won't do," Rarity said before looking back to Fluttershy, "I suppose money will be an issue?" It seemed to be more of a statement than a question.
"Well, perhaps something reasonable." She wasn't happy with that response since reasonable means different thing to different ponies.
"So I'll take that as a yes," Rarity said. She saw the look on Fluttershy's face and said, "Oh don't feel bad dear. I know you aren't much in the way of funds and Applejack probably takes whatever bits she earns and puts it right back into that farm of hers." Rarity laughed and said, "I put most of what I earn back in my boutique, so I know how difficult it is."
Fluttershy smiled, "Thank you for understanding. I make so little from pet sitting that I have a hard time sometimes having the money for our spa trips."
"Fluttershy if you're having a hard time, you should tell me. I can easily pay for you."
Fluttershy shook her head and said, "I appreciate it Rarity I really do, but I can't impose on you like that. I get a discount from the twins since I groom their cats."
Rarity sighed in defeat and said, "Very well, Fluttershy. I know I can't convince you, but please allow me to at least treat you to the spa once in a while."
"Ok Rarity I promise."
"Good," Rarity said and went back to sorting the stack of leaflets.
"Ah, finished!" She turned to Fluttershy and said with a smile, "These are some fine establishments. Perhaps not my first choice, but they will serve their purpose. Don't worry, I chose the ones with the most, uh let's just say tolerable atmospheres."
"Thank you very much Rarity. I can't wait to show these to Applejack at lunch today!" Fluttershy turned to leave when she suddenly realized that this was the most time she spent with Rarity since she started seeing Applejack. She stopped and said, "I have time before lunch. So, um how is business?"
Rarity face lit up at the question. It had been so long since Fluttershy and she had spoken, and there was so much going on in fashion. "Well, business has been rather slow lately, but I did receive an order for a cutciñera dress. Normally I wouldn't be so excited, but this dress is being made for the daughter of the mayor of Fillydelphia!" Rarity motioned Fluttershy over to her sewing machine. "You see the design I chose is to cover the cutie mark so at a specific time during the celebration this part of the dress," Rarity pointed to a sketch she drew, "could be removed to reveal the cutie mark for all to see."
"Well, that's, um bold," Fluttershy said.
"Well that is the idea. Oh I remember my cutciñera! The dancing, the presents, the feeling of knowing who I truly am." She turned to Fluttershy and asked, "How was your cutciñera? I don't believe we ever discussed it."
"Oh you know," Fluttershy said, "Dancing, presents, discovery. Nothing special." She was lying. Her family could not afford to give her a cutciñera party, and even if they could they probably wouldn't. Her father was one of the lead weather pegasi in Cloudsdale and her mother stayed at home and were not happy at all that her cutie mark had nothing to do with flying or weather. They were also very disappointed at her weak flying and penchant to stay on the ground. Fluttershy knew that they would be disappointed that she was falling for a mare as well. 'Just add it to the list of disappointments,' Fluttershy thought to herself.
"Well it must've been grand for you," Rarity said not noticing Fluttershy was lying to her. She looked at the clock on the wall and said , "Oh my, is that really the time? I'm sorry Fluttershy but I simply must finish this dress!"
Fluttershy nodded her head and said, "Of course. It was very nice talking to you. I'm sorry I haven't been able to do so in a while."
"Don't be silly," Rarity said with a laugh, "You have found love with Applejack!" She walked over to Fluttershy and gave her a hug before returning to her machine.
"Yes, I think I might be in love with her." Fluttershy turned away from Rarity and noticed a design for a wedding dress. She walked to it and asked, "Is this a new design of yours?"
Rarity turned around and levitated the design away from Fluttershy saying, "Yes. It's a design I'm experimenting with, but I want it to be perfect. I've never designed a wedding gown before." She smiled at Fluttershy and said, "Well, like I said, I must get back to work."
"I'll see myself out," Fluttershy said softly, "Don't work too hard Rarity." Unfortunately, the unicorn was not listening. Fluttershy made her way down the stairs with the restaurant leaflets and passed Sweetie Belle's room. If she had hoped to slip passed unnoticed then she failed.
"So you're done talking with sis?"
"Yes, it's been too long since I spoke to her. I missed our talks." Fluttershy said.
"Yeah she missed you too. But when I would ask her she would just say that you found somepony that makes you happy."
Fluttershy nodded, "Oh yes."
Sweetie Belle smiled and the asked, "Are you a fillyfooler?"
Fluttershy was stunned by both the directness and suddenness of the question, "I, um well... you see." Fluttershy was stammering and didn't know what to do. Normally, she would panic and run or even just cower hoping somepony else would deal with it. This time however, she ponied up looked Sweetie Belle in the eyes and said, "Well I wouldn't use that term, but since I have heard worse I guess it'll do."
If the news affected the unicorn filly at all, she certainly did an excellent job of hiding it. She merely tapped her chin with her hoof and asked with a raised eyebrow, "You're not a foalmolester are you?"
"What," Fluttershy gasped. "Why on earth would you think that? I would never hurt a foal! Ever!" She punctuated it with a stamp of her hoof and couldn't help crying.
Sweetie Belle just looked at Fluttershy with her innocent green eyes and said softly, "I, I'm sorry Fluttershy. It's just that I heard at school fillyfoolers also..." She trailed off feeling terrible thinking that a pony as kind as Fluttershy would ever hurt anypony. "Can you forgive me," Sweetie Belle asked softly putting her forelegs around Fluttershy hugging the pegasus softly.
Fluttershy sniffed back some tears and said, "It's ok Sweetie Belle. I understand that it's not exactly normal." Fluttershy stood up and the filly was still looking at her with tears in her eyes. Fluttershy wiped away a tear from Sweetie Belle's face and said, "Remember, just because I'm, um gay doesn't make me a monster. I am the same Fluttershy that looked after you and your friends when you stayed at my cottage."
"I know Fluttershy," Sweetie Belle said still feeling ashamed, "It's just that I didn't know you were like that. I just thought you were just too shy for a boyfriend."
Fluttershy smiled and said, "Well I'm feeling a little less shy now."
"Well that's great," Sweetie Belle said. She leaned forward smiling with a raised eyebrow and asked, "So who's your girlfriend?"
"You don't know?"
Sweetie Belle shook her head, "Nope. No clue."
"Well, would it be alright if I kept it a secret for now?"
"Aww," Sweetie Belle pouted but looking at Fluttershy's pleading face she understood why Fluttershy wanted the identity of her girlfriend to remain a secret, "Ok Fluttershy. But you will tell me one day?"
"I promise," Fluttershy said with a smile. "I have to go. Take care Sweetie Belle."
"Bye Fluttershy. I'm sorry for making you feel bad. Really! I didn't mean to hurt your feelings."
Fluttershy smiled at the filly and made her way back to the town square to meet Applejack for lunch. 'I wonder why Applebloom didn't tell her friends about us. I'll ask Applejack,' Fluttershy thought and took off again at the brisk speed she had earlier.
Applejack was already waiting for Fluttershy and lit up when she saw the pegasus fly down, "Well hey there! Look at you flying around!"
Fluttershy blushed and gave Applejack a small kiss on the cheek. "I feel. Nice. No. I feel great," she said with a smile.
"You sure look it sugarcube," Applejack said, "I was just sitting here waiting for ya to make your way here so we can pick out a place to eat."
Fluttershy shook her head, "No. You decide. I will be happy just to spend time with you." She passed Applejack the leaflets and the orange mare began sifting through them.
"Well," Applejack said, "Were there any that stood out to you? I mean your input is important to me."
"Well this one looked nice," Fluttershy said picking out one named 'Chambre des Fleurs'.
Applejack looked at it and looked back at Fluttershy with a questioning look that said, 'what does that say?'
Fluttershy said, "Oh that means 'House of Flowers'."
"Oh ok," Applejack said. She opened it up and was glad that the items were translated. She then saw the prices and shouted, "How much for a daisy sandwich?" She looked at Fluttershy and saw her becoming scared, "I'm sorry sugarcube. I shouldn't have shouted like that. It's just that there isn't a whole lot of money free right now." She hugged the shivering pony and asked, "You alright?"
"I'm sorry. I thought we could split the bill. Please don't be mad at me." The last sentence ended with a squeak though Applejack was able to decipher it.
"I would like to take you to a place you deserve but I just can't afford it." Applejack lifted Fluttershy's head with a hoof and said, "I couldn't be mad at ya." She gave the pegasus a small kiss on the lips and went back to the leaflets. Looking back up she said, "Oh, and don' even think about us splitting the bill. I'm taking you out to dinner, so don't you worry." She nodded to reaffirm her statement.
Fluttershy nodded feeling a little better. Suddenly she remembered what Sweetie Belle said and she asked, "Applejack, have you told your family about us?"
"Not yet. I know I promised I'd tell my family about us, but I'm scared." Applejack set the leaflet she was reading aside, "I'll tell em tonight. I promise." Applejack looked at Fluttershy and asked, "Why? Is something wrong?"
"Oh no," Fluttershy said softly, "It's just that Sweetie Belle didn't know who my girlfriend was. She told me there was a rumor about me."
"You told Sweetie Belle you're a," Applejack said not wanting to use the term.
"Gay," Fluttershy said, "Yes. She just asked me if I was, and I told her. Maybe I should've just ran away."
"You didn't run?" Applejack narrowed her eyes and said, "Who're you and what did you do to my Fluttershy?"
Fluttershy laughed and said as menacingly as she could, "If you want to see her alive then you must choose!" She could not help but giggle a bit.
"The place to eat of course," Fluttershy said with a laugh.
Applejack giggled and went back to the leaflets. After a while, she picked up one that she looked over a few times already. "Hmm, I think this'd be a good place to chow down at." She passed the leaflet over to Fluttershy.
Fluttershy looked over the leaflet and nodded, "That sounds lovely."
"Great," Applejack said, "So it's decided then. This could be fun!" She did not mean it though and Applejack could tell Fluttershy knew she was lying.
Fluttershy put her hoof on Applejack's and said, "I want to spend time with you, and tonight will be prefect." She gave the orange pony a warm smile.
Applejack smiled in return and said, "You're right."
The waiter arrived with a plate of hay fries, a daisy sandwich, a glass of apple juice, and a hay smoothie.
"Yeah since I got here first," Applejack said almost apologetically, "I took the liberty of ordering. I hope you don' mind."
Fluttershy shook her head, "Of course I don't mind." She took a bite of her daisy sandwich, and smiled at Applejack.
The couple had lunch with the conversation going in no particular direction and often times seemed to be random enough that Pinkie Pie herself would have shaken her head in disbelief.
After they were finished, Applejack asked, "Should we get dressed up?"
Fluttershy shook her head, "No this restaurant looks informal enough that we won't have to."
Applejack sighed in relief, "Well, that's certainly good to know. I dunno if I could handle dressing up and I don't think my Gala gown would be a good fit for it."
Fluttershy nodded remembering Applejack's dress was better suited to selling apples than fine dining. "I wouldn't want you to be more uncomfortable," Fluttershy said, "Um, thank you, Applejack."
"What for, sugarcube?"
"Well, you have been very patient with me. There are things I know I should tell you, but I'm not ready yet." Applejack was about to say something but Fluttershy gently put her hoof to her mouth. "I promise that I will tell you. It's just that thinking back on them...," Fluttershy cringed and Applejack hugged her gently.
"You don't have to tell me anything you don't want to. When you're ready then you'll tell me what you need to. I ain't about to start trying to pry open old wounds, ya hear me?"
Fluttershy nodded and said, "Thank you Applejack. I hope I can offer you the same thing."
Applejack just stared at Fluttershy. She was stunned when anger flashed in her mind. First from the notion that she needed such a crutch, and then at herself for thinking even for a second that she never needed help. Fluttershy saw the anger on her face clearly.
"I'm sorry," Fluttershy whispered wanting to back away but still locked in Applejack's hug. "Please," she pleaded softly, "I didn't mean anything by it. I just want to help. Like you always help me."
Applejack shook her head and said, "I'm sorry sugarcube." She could feel Fluttershy wanting to run and hide. "I know I can be mighty stubborn and that accepting help is hard for me even when I really need it. I never thought I'd be offered help." She caressed Fluttershy's mane and said, "Thank you Fluttershy. If I ever need an ear to listen, you'll be me my first stop."
Fluttershy felt much better, so much better, that she whispered into Applejack's ear, "You'd better." It might have been more intimidating if she hadn't giggled as she said it. She looked up at Applejack's warm smile and smiled as well.
"Well it was fun," Applejack said, "but I gotta get back to the farm. I'm gonna settle up here." She grabbed the check before Fluttershy could mutter anything in protest. She walked up to the counter and paid.
Upon her return to the table, Fluttershy asked, "So I will see you tonight?"
"Yeah, how's about we meet up here so that way you don' get all dirty from the farm?"
"Ok. But not because of the dirt. This way we can sort of meet halfway."
"Never thought of it like that. That'd work. Oh and I'll tell Applebloom and Mac about us. It's nothing to be ashamed of as far as I'm concerned."
Fluttershy nodded and leaned over giving Applejack a quick kiss on the lips. "Nothing to be ashamed of at all," she breathed smiling.
Applejack's heart pounded in her chest and she desperately wanted to grab that little pegasus and whisk her away, but she remembered where she was and that this was Fluttershy. Instead, she returned a small kiss on the cheek. 'This'll have to do,' she thought to herself.
After their lunch, Applejack returned to Sweet Apple Acres. She felt a mix of relief and dread when she spotted her older brother waiting for her.
"What gotcha all flustered sis," Big Macintosh asked.
"What," Applejack asked. She looked her big brother in the eye and thought to herself, 'Well, it's now or never.' Applejack said, "Mac, there's something I need to tell you. You see I kind of-"
"It's Fluttershy isn't it," Big Mac asked.
Applejack stared at her brother with mouth open. Soon she found her voice, "You, you know?"
Mac nodded and said, "Eeyup." He turned away from Applejack and continued, "I've known since your birthday party." Mac turned back to his sister when he heard her crying. "Applejack? What's wrong?"
"I'm sorry," she screamed. Applejack collapsed to the ground, 'He hates me now. Good going Applejack, he can't even look you in the eye.' She looked up when she felt Mac nudge her.
The strong work pony gave his younger sister a hug and said, "Why are you sorry?" He wiped the tears from Applejack's face, "You're still my little sister, and I can't hold it against you who you fall for."
"So, you're not mad?"
Mac smiled and asked, "Did it have to be Fluttershy?"
Applejack laughed and sniffed back some tears, "What can I say? We got good taste."
"Eeyup. C'mon. Let's get you cleaned up." He helped Applejack back to her hooves and asked, "You're not rushing the poor thing are you?"
Applejack sighed and said, "I'm trying to go slow for her sake, but she's just so
" She didn't want to finish the thought, but she knew what the problem was. She was happy that Fluttershy was becoming more confident, but it was at too slow a pace. She needed more from her and she wasn't getting it. Applejack felt awful for it. She knew something happened to Fluttershy that hurt her real bad, and Applejack was supposed to be there for her. She was letting her girlfriend down all because of her own lust. 'Get yourself together, Applejack,' she mentally scolded herself, 'Fluttershy is the best thing to happen to ya an' you wanna throw it away?'
Mac could see how Applejack was struggling so he said, "Sis, just be yourself. You got a good heart, and I know that you'll take good care of her."
Applejack smiled, "Thanks big brother. Fluttershy and me got a date tonight, so I'd best get ready."
Mac laughed and asked, "Feels good not having to come up with lousy excuses to go see her, huh?"
"Yeah, it does. Thanks for understanding. I mean it. You're a great big brother." She gave Mac a hug and entered the house.
She smiled knowing that her big brother was happy for her, but now she had to tell her little sister. The moment came Applebloom walked into the room.
"Hey sis," the filly said with a huge smile.
"Hey Applebloom," Applejack replied. She remembered what Fluttershy said and said, "Applebloom I need to talk to ya."
"Oh ok," the filly said as her mind raced to find whatever infraction she might have committed to incur a 'talk' from her sister.
"You ain't in trouble," Applejack reassured her.
"Whew," Applebloom sighed. "So what's up," she said happily dropping onto her haunches.
"Well, I have some pretty big news. You remember my birthday party a couple of weeks ago" she asked nervously.
Applebloom nodded but said nothing.
Applejack shifted her hat and said, "I started seeing somepony."
"Really? That's great sis. Who is it? Do I know him?"
Applejack gave Applebloom a nervous smile and said, "Yup, you know her."
Applebloom nodded and asked, "Wait. What do you mean 'her'?"
Applebloom stared at her big sister, "Wait a second. You and Fluttershy are dating?"
Applejack nodded, "Yeah, ever since my birthday party. I know this is a shock, and I understand if you don't understand. Things with Fluttershy are getting pretty serious, and I don't want to skulk around like we're doing something wrong."
"But you are doing something wrong," Applebloom shouted. "You can't have a girlfriend. It's boy-girl for a reason." She looked at her sister and saw Applejack about to cry. Applebloom hugged her sister and said, "I. I'm sorry sis. Why didn't you tell me sooner?"
"I was afraid that you'd hate me for what I am."
Applebloom took a step back and said, "I don't hate you sis. I didn't know ponies were really like that." She scratched her head with a hoof and asked, "Does this mean the nasty rumor about Fluttershy is true?"
"What rumor," Applejack asked.
"Well that she was a
" Applebloom paused and looked at her sister as though asking for permission to say the word, "Well that she's a, um fillyfooler," she said that very softly, "And since she's that that she's also a foalmolester." She whispered that as well.
"What? Why would anypony think that? Especially, of Fluttershy?"
"Ah don' believe it," Applebloom insisted, "It's just that there were some mean looking colts at the school and they were asking around where they could find Fluttershy. Since she doesn't live in town, nopony knew, but he didn't talk to us since Ms. Cheerilee chased them off."
"Hmm," Applejack said, "I appreciate you telling me that Applebloom. I'll let Fluttershy know to keep an eye out for any suspicious types around her cottage. In the meantime ah best get ready for dinner."
"Oh what're we having," Applebloom asked excitedly.
Applejack laughed and said, "Sorry sugarcube, but this dinner is gonna be handled by Big Mac." She laughed at Applebloom's look of disgust and said, "Tonight is gonna be Fluttershy and me at a nice place."
"That sounds fun," Applebloom said clearly down that Applejack will get to eat good food and she would probably eat overcooked hay.
Applejack playfully rustled Applebloom's mane and went to take a bath. Her mind began wander as filled the bath, 'I hope those colts don't try anything. Applebloom's young but she's got a good head on her shoulders. She's a good judge of character. She was the only one who wasn't afraid of Zecora, so if the colts gave her a bad feeling then they could mean to harm Fluttershy.' Applejack thought about having Fluttershy stay with her for a while but that would only be a temporary fix, and she did not want to go looking for trouble that may not even be looking for her. With a sigh, she began getting herself cleaned up. She only hoped that she could get through the night without an incident. She pushed that thought aside and once she finished washing up dried herself off.
Mac was cooking the hay and Applejack walked up to him and said, "Don't forget big brother that ya need to put a tiny bit of salt so it won't overcook."
"Eeyup," Mac said as he reached for the salt and glanced back when Applebloom let out a relieved sigh. He gave Applejack a warm smile and said, "Have a good night."
Applejack laughed and left the house headed to Ponyville square. Her thoughts were swimming from the day's events. 'I need to treat Fluttershy better. This is our night, and I'm gonna show her a great time. I just hope that I can keep myself together. Now there are some ponies that might try and hurt her.' That final thought scared her so she ran to the square and did not care that she was sweaty by the time she arrived.