"Terra, we need to talk."
Octavia and Vinyl looked behind the small pokemon, then to each other seeing the same worried face that they have been seeing in the mirror for the past two weeks. Vinyl gave her dear "Octy" a tiny shove forward.
Giving the scaredy-cat a harsh look, Octavia spoke slowly and surely, watching the bedroom behind Terra for any movement. "We know that Nick and Elena are like the siblings you never had. And the three of you have travelled across regions and found breath-taking sights. And you certainly see the sparks of romance to fly between them, especially after you all arrived in Equestria. You certainly want your friends to be happy together but-"
"But you're kind of acting crazy." Vinyl finished, tired of all of Octavia's buttering and hand holding.
"Crazy? Whatever do you ponies mean?" Terra looks away from her section of the floor to her friends as she tilted her head inquisitively.
The fourth individual in the hallway cleared his throat.
Terra held up a finger before she turned her attention back to the game of checkers between herself and a Gravler in front of the same door that has been on both ponies' minds for the last two hours.
When Vinyl and Octavia woke up this morning, they were not surprised to see another pokemon in their shared home. Terra was a very social mon compared to the other two, who had a very long list of acquaintances that has been growing every day since they came back to Ponyville. It was like having a quieter, cleaner Vinyl.
They were not surprised to see Terra was trying once again to forcibly start a physical union between the two pokemon who obviously need a little help in the romance department.
Though they were surprised to see the new level of effort she was putting into it.
"You cannot lock two creatures up and force them to-"
A lecherous grin spread across Vinyl's face as words spilled out of her mouth. "Make a whoopee, plug and play the joy buzzer-"And the list went on, the mare was like a dirty phrase book.
"Vinyl-" Octavia threatened.
"I know, I know, shutting up." Vinyl said as she mimed a zipper on her mouth before saying:
"Ride the pink pony."
"But I had to say the last one." Vinyl whined. "You have to see the face Pinkie makes when somepony mentions it. It's freaking priceless!"
Giving up on a lost cause, Octavia gave the Mawile a hard look. "Terra, you cannot lock up your friends as though they are criminals."
"Guilty of the failure to consummate. I am pretty sure that is an actual law in Saddle Arabia. So technically if we weren't in Equestria…Heck they even lock them up with squeaky beds so the guards would know to let them out when they did the deed."
Terra popped up after Vinyl finished talking onto her feet and frantically talking to the Gravler.
"Outofthewayoutofthewaymoveitmoveit-"She continued, not even pausing for breath, as the Gravler simply scratched the top of his head at the sudden shift in demeanor.
Grinding her teeth in frustration, Terra had enough. Tired of waiting for Gravler to move she reeled her head back, her maw hitting the floor with a thud, before whipping it around like a flail and bashing the side of his head so hard that he rolled up the wall next to him and started rolling down the hall.
In his path, were two mares.
And with a tiny moment of awareness for the soon to be pancakes, a bolder-sized pokemon ploughed into, through and over Vinyl and Octavia.
Pressing her ear to the door, Terra tried to hear what was going on the other side, the groans of pain from behind her were far too loud.
"Quiet!" She hissed, "I can't hear the bedsprings." Terra turned her attention back to beyond the door, straining her ears.
Hearing nothing, Terra gave into her sense of curiosity and slowly pried the door open. With a small bit of hope in her heart, she sang, "So how's the hanky pankying going-"Only to stop short when seeing an empty room with clean and well-made beds.
Terra searched the room for any sign, a curly strand of chest fur, a sliver of steel, anything that could say what they did and where they went. She felt a small breeze and darted to the window, poking her head outside for any sign of her quarry.
"Another failed attempt." Terra cursed to herself. Why do they keep avoiding the issue? She thought, only to be drawn away from any further complaining to the sound of paper flipping in the wind.
Tapped onto the windowsill was a small note. Terra leapt up to grab it and begun to read, hoping that it was a damn good excuse. Elena gave up the best chance to have her baby batter stirred.
In a slight daze, the Gravler gets up and starts to leave the home. Looking pretty happy to get the pebbles flowing again in his legs, or would have been if he was not busy scowling and shaking his four fists at the bedroom.
The door was shut hard to the wall, the picture frames lining the hallway rattled and making Vinyl cringe as she covered her ears with her hooves. "Jeez," She stamped her hoof, took in a big huff of air. "WELL, GOOD MORNING TO YOU TOO!"
"Vinyl, you would be acting the same way if you were rolled against a wall."
She raises a white hoof and opens her mouth.
"Doing so on your own accord does not count."
She puts her hoof down and looks to the floor in thought for just a second before springing up so fast that her glasses shift from her eyes to her forehead.
"And not when you are willingly rubbed against the wall by your nightly companions."
Before Vinyl could attempt to add anything else, they heard something quite rare in their home.
Looking to the source of the sad sound, they saw Terra had collapsed to the floor and was hugging her large jaws to her body as she continued to sniffle with her face hidden behind her mandibles.
"Well, we can't play the guessing game this time. Vinyl, take her to Twilight and I'll get her comfort food ready, it's going to be a long morning."
"I just, sniff, don't understand." Terra blows hard into the tissue, as her body jerks forward with the motion, her large jaws clamped down on the slice of sheet metal between her teeth. A tremendous wail came from the little body as the jaws opened, revealing the gnarled aluminum.
From her seat next to Terra's jaws on the couch, Octavia reached over and took away the one sheet and placed it into their junkyard pile, consisting of many more pieces of twisted steel and iron.
Without a slice of steel between her mandibles, broken sentences spilled out of her mouth between the sobs and heaving breaths. "The way they-Acted on Earth-It was a no-brainer for them-"Terra took a long gulp, before breaking down into tears again.
Half a dozen carriage door handles floated through the air, shimmering grip of blue magic as they were levitated into Terra's empty jaws. Vinyl was reading the note left behind by Nick and Elena and she could not help but notice how many…colourful the words they used on it.
"Jeez, here you are hoping Nick was dipping his pen in her ink, and here he is doing the exact thing you told him." She flips the page, only to turn away from it like it was the Lost Ark from the Daring Do series. "Dang, I didn't know humans had so many swears. They could probably put a seapony to shame."
Terra lifted her head and screamed to the sky, "Why won't they fall in love!?" A river of tears spilled from each of her eyes, an unending stream.
Octavia continued, "Anyone with two eyes and a beating heart could see the love between them. It's just that…we think you are trying too hard."
Terra was flushed red, and not from the amount of crying she has been doing. She remembered the rather embarrassing attempts to get Nick some action. She had gotten her hands on an extremely alcoholic beverage and spiked the punch at a party knowing that a certain duo was nearby and about to take a few cups.
Only for them to be distracted by a couple of Lucarios chatting nearby.
As they were pulled away, Octavia and Vinyl popped over. Before Terra could warn them not to touch the punch, it was too late as they each had a full cup and begun to tip and swerve around the party while they did some things that those of the wiser mindset chose to back away from.
"You only just got a little tipsy…" Terra said comfortingly, as she attempted to reach out towards Octavia. The look in the grey mare's eyes made the Mawile's whimpers escape her throat as she brought her arms around her to hug herself.
"A little tipsy does not make me flirt with Spike." Octavia's eyes bore a hole deep inside Terra's skull. "I woke up bound and gagged in the library basement with Twilight reading me my rights and amendments in the Equestrian court of law before she finally relented and let me go."
The room was covered in a pregnant pause before Vinyl burst with laughter. "I knew about the law and order routine she gave ya, but that's the first I heard of the bondage." Liquid fun was starting to drip from her eyes as Vinyl continued to laugh at the idea of uptight Octavia wrapped up tight with a nice black bow with a red ball gag.
"And don't you dare think of such perverse things Vinyl Scratch! You know as well as I do that Princess Twilight would not own such scandalous items." Octavia retorted back, red across her muzzle.
"Anypony with a basement has a secret my proud, noble friend. Whether it is a collection crystal figurines, a dead corpse or two…" Vinyl levitated her shades above her eyes to give Octavia a dreamy eyed look. "Or a small shrine to a certain stallion~" She sang as she leapt from the chair to stay out of Octavia's reach.
The red blush that started on Octavia's muzzle then spread like wildfire across her face at the mention of the word "shrine". "It only a small collection of newspaper articles and photos." She mumbled, and then yelled to Vinyl, "I wasn't the one who made out with the Spa Twins in the Ponyville fountain!" It was early and many ponies had yet to retire home for the evening before the show took place in town square.
Another pregnant pause filled the room as Terra's eyes widened, staring at Vinyl who was simply leaning against the wall, and with a straight face, she said.
"I got to second base with two hot mares, WHILE making over 200 bits towards starving foals in Zebriaca. It was a total win-win night for me."
Before Octavia could howl and curse to the heavens, one voice wailed aloud, "So I can get not one, but TWO mares to fall in love with Vinyl instead of getting my best friends `going belly-to-belly`!" The crying continues once again louder than when she started hours before. A waterfall streamed from her eye sockets drenching the carpet.
"But we weren't in love." Vinyl tried to say before she was drowned out with the sound of gushing tears filling the room with the strength of a monsoon.
Pushing through the strong current, Octavia wrapped her forelegs around Terra as she hugged her small body to stifle the amount of water soaking both the floor and her coat. "Oh sweetie, it's not them." She cooed as she stroked the black skin atop Terra's head. "It's you."
Terra stops crying to give a weak "Wha?"
"Your methods are very questionable. How does courting work for pokemon?" Octavia questioned while keeping the Mawile in a firm hug.
"I'm just doing exactly what my Mum taught me. When two pokemon like each other very much, they will wait until no one is looking; do the mommy-daddy dance, then BAM! One egg ready to be hatched."
Vinyl's face contorted into grimace. "An entire world filled with prudes, and Arcerus brought all of you here. Guess us ponies going to have teach you all how to live a little."
"Terra." Octavia said with a commanding tone. She released the Mawile as she stood upright and moved to the front, so she was looking down onto Terra. With the posture that has been scrutinized and perfected over two decades, Octavia's noble past begun give her a strange glow. "The time has come," The words she spoke, the pride within every syllable drew the eyes and ears of even the most disinterested mare and the most downtrodden pokemon.
"For starting today, I, Octavia Melody, will help you in your quest of merging these two hearts, their very songs and with your aid arrange them into a beautiful masterpiece that will captivate any who dare to listen to the rising crescendo of their love."
A small smile spread across the Mawile's face. "You'll help me get them together?"
"I said I would help you in this matter the night that we met, so after seeing some of your methods have…as you say, flopped, the time has come for us to join our minds and hearts to plan the greatest match-making scheme this world has ever known. No pony will ever be able to outdo us in the realm of romance."
Octavia's rousing pledge soon wept away the sadness on Terra's face as she leapt with joy. Jumping around the room, her large second tongue flapping around inside her half open maw, she wrapped her tiny arms around Octavia's neck. "Thankyouthankyouthankyou!"
Vinyl watched the entire display from start to finish. From Octavia's inspiring speech to the complete 180 on Terra's mood. She lifted her magazine to as a way to isolate herself from the scene. These two really don't get do they? She thought to herself. Oh well, it is going to be an interesting to see at least. Vinyl had a small chuckle inside her mind.
Unknown to either of the ponies, while Terra was nuzzling her face deeply into Octavia's neck, that past her tear-stained cheeks and puffy red eyes the smile of gratitude and happiness was replaced with a sharp and predatory grin.
"Do I love you? My God, if your love were a grain of sand, mine would be a universe of beaches." Octavia's voice reached out into the hallway, drawing Vinyl's attention to the half opened door.
Vinyl walked into Octavia's room to a rather peculiar sight. Octavia was curled up on the floor, but between her forelegs were two things, a small but extremely well-worn book, and Terra. Her small stature made the pokemon fit rather snugly under Octavia's chin with the black stalk-like skin lain on the back of Octavia's neck with Terra's large jaws next to Octavia's body holding a small plate with cookies and milk on top.
Looking between the book and the well absorbed duo, Vinyl could only say, "So what exactly are you two reading?"
"One of the most romantic stories of all time, Celestia's Bride. The only stallion Princess Celestia ever loved and trials they faced together for the sake of true love."
Raising a single eyebrow, Vinyl asked, "So you're using a story that was written based on Princess Celestia and how it completely ignores all the boring history lessons we learned since we could barely trot?"
"No, it even says in the foreword that Celestia herself stated that it was a thrilling adventure that captivated her attention and never allowed her to think of anything else till the end."
"Buzz off Vinyl! You are ruining the mood." Terra yelled. "Please continue Octavia." She said honey-laced words, her large red eyes looking up to the pony in question sweetly.
As they continued to read of Celestia and the dashing rogue that stole her away from her kidnappers, Vinyl Scratch could only shake her head in disbelief. It is true what they say; love makes fools of us all.
As the sun settled high in the sky, Vinyl stretched the creaks and cracks out of her limbs, before rising out of bed. Yesterday was rather peaceful, after drowning out all the mushy "research" while making a few new mixes. The two matchmakers were reading and watching a whole cartful of love mush books and movies throughout the whole day and night.
Maybe they overdid it and gave up on their idea of love? Vinyl felt a small glimmer of hope if that was the case. After reviewing all those books and movies, maybe they agreed to let nature run its course instead of trying to steer it their way.
Of course the note on her door said otherwise.
Come down to the basement. We will be waiting with the greatest plan ever made for the sake of true love.
Their plan is probably terrible, but it would be a good way to get a laugh. And with that thought Vinyl made her way to the basement.
Coming down the stairs, Vinyl caught a glimpse of the scene. Under a solitary light bulb, Terra was pacing in place with Octavia standing next to a large board attached to the wall covered by a white curtain.
"Who in Arcerus's name sleeps till noon? She is wasting the day and we cannot let her hold up our plans for the sake of love."
Using a loud stomp on the final stair Vinyl announced her presence. "Alright Love gurus, lay it on me. What exactly did you two cook up in this little hide-e-hole?"
The two conspirators looked to one another and smiled. It was a smile that that revealed the inner workings of their minds. Both Octavia's and Terra's teeth were on full display, including the two jaws of life and death behind the Mawile.
Octavia may have picked up a few qualities after spending so much time with the pokemon after the last 24 hours. Her smile used to be tiny. A small tug at the corners of her mouth, for it would be rather improper for a lady to "grin like a fool" she would say. Octavia was definitely not grinning like a fool.
She looked like a bloody madmare.
Partially stained yellowed by the large consumption coffee over the night, they looked dementedly twisted from the pearly white they once were. Spread across her entire mouth like spikes coming together to crush a poor soul within the confines of an Iron Maiden.
Her mane certainly did not help the look. Her mane was a nightmare. Vinyl was never one to care much about all the frou frou neat and tidy stuff they try and shove down your throat at the salon, but dang, Octavia needs some of that stuff quick. Her well-groomed mane, once so straight that not a single strand of hair dared to step out of line to be a sign of chaos. Split ends, clumping together in mismatched braids halfway finished.
So stunned by the decrepit state of Octavia, Vinyl had stopped moving only to stare at her friend.
The twisted grin on Octavia's face faltered slightly. "Are you okay Vinyl?" She asked.
Shaking herself out of her stupor, Vinyl rubbed her eyes to wipe away the morning grit. Taking another look, there stood Octavia, just a bit frazzled after so many hours of work.
"Nah, I'm good. So what exactly is under the bed sheet?" Vinyl said while pointing to the covered board.
Octavia gave another smile. A tired one, yet the happiness that emanated from it proved that it was worth it all in her mind. "My masterpiece." She motions to Terra with a nod of her head.
The pint-sized pokemon clears her throat and begins to speak with a rather articulate edge. "After many hours of research with my dear friend and colleague, Octavia Melody, we decided to combine our studies." With an upraised hand, Terra presented Octavia. "With her knowledge of romance and the excitement of young love-"
Vinyl snuck in a quick snort.
Terra paused as she pointed back to herself. "And my extensive knowledge on the behaviour of the subjects in question." She took hold of the sheet covering board, "Our brilliant minds were able to write this beautiful sonata, this is Operation: Green Quandry!"
With a sharp tug the bed sheet was ripped free. Revealing a white board filled with a variety of images ranging from cute to some that were rather…obscene.
"What exactly am I looking at here?" Vinyl asked warily, her eyes just about popped out of head at a poorly drawn image of a black and blue splotch getting it on in what appeared to be Hayburgers'.
"What is the most sure-fire way to get anyone to confess to their significant other?"
"Letting them man-up and do it themselves?" Vinyl jabbed as she sat on her haunches to get morecomfortable.
"Neigh!" Terra exclaimed. Taking hold of the pointer stick, she slammed it against the board at an image of what appeared to be Elena surrounded by male Lucarios. "Jealousy, thy name is courage!"
Octavia smiled. "My dear Vinyl, what do you know of Celestia's Bride?"
"Let's pretend that I was not forced to read that book in school." She groaned back.
With a heavy sigh, Octavia begun to explain. "When the dashing farmhand-turned pirate captain heard word that Princess Celestia was going to marry Prince Griffindink of Featopia, he sped back towards Equestria as though the spirit of Commander Hurricane herself had blessed his travels."
Terra jumps in. "And so he fought the dastardly kidnappers to recapture his fair maiden and to once more swear that he would stay by her side till the end of his days." She says dreamily, clasping her hands together under her chin.
"So you are going to set Elena up on a date?" Vinyl guffawed. "Please! Like she would even say yes."
With a glint in her eye, and sack in her hands, Terra said, "I can be very persuasive."
Near the outskirts of the Everfree Forest,
Elena padded forward and back in front of the line-up of various pokemon, looking at each of them in the eye before moving onto the next one. "Many of you are very young, yet you desire to be strong. Even though this world is not our own we still must be ready for anything that can happen."
"Some of you wish to evolve and became the best you can be." Her red eyes locked onto the tiny Pichu quaking under her gaze, its ears drooping low enough almost to cover her face.
"Others wish to grow strong to aid Lord Arcerus in his grand plan in this peaceful world." Giving only a sidelong glance to the steadfast Boldore. The response was a quick flash from the orange crystals within its face.
The Lupine fighter came to a stop in front of the dragon pokemon. "As for you…"
"I shall conquer all that oppose me. Fear my power!" Goomy used Flail. Gloops of her body mucus flew from its body, making the Boldore next to her jump up in disgust and almost crushing the Pichu in the process.
Elena simply raised an eyebrow as she flicked the blob of slime off her muzzle. "There is more to life than power. Once you find your reason for fighting, then the sky is the limit. Now, onto the lessons-"
"Yvetal take me now." Elena mumbled as she felt the presence of beloved friend coming from behind her. "Pardon me, students. This shall only take a moment, spar amongst yourselves until I return." With an abrupt turn Elena came face to face to a grinning Mawile, carrying a rather large (and sweet-smelling) sack. Walking away from her pupils with Terra in tow she waited until they were out of sight before turning on Terra. Elena snarled "What do you want Imp?"
"Why are you so angry?" Terra pouted jokingly. "I thought we were friends."
"We are friends, but ever since we met up with Nick in Manehatten you've been trying to peer-pressure us into…ringing each other's Beldams." The tiniest hint of red blush appeared beneath her blue fur before disappearing.
"I know, I know, but today I come with an offer. Go to dinner on a double date-"
"Both Nick and I tire of your sheniagans, Terra. Did you not read the note?" Elena interjected.
Terra puffed out her cheeks, "Aww, but you didn't let me finish. Go to dinner on a double date with Nick and his date."
The fighting type, one who was always focused, alert and in control of her emotions felt her mind sputter to a stop. "He asked a female out?" Elena said, he voice cracking ever so slightly.
"Pssh, he never got any human girlfriends why would some extra bit of fur and fluff change his dating game?" Terra replied, waving off the idea of him taking the intuitive. "Nah, it's going to be a double blind date. You, plus a random male, and Nick and a completely random female." She specified completely.
Elena narrowed her eyes searching the all too happy face of Terra beaming back at her. "For the last few days you tried to lock us in a closet, spike our drinks and tried to starve us by only giving us whipped cream and strawberries. What are you up to?"
"Oh Elly…" With a casual sigh, Terra shifted the sack over her shoulder and dropped it to the ground with a non-existent thud. Terra wrapped her arm casually around the leg of her friend as she looked wistfully off into the distance. "I am losing faith in the love between you and Nick. All my attempts to help you two have failed and you both deny the OBVIOUS attraction to one another so I decided for one final test." Terra looked up to Elena. "You both will go out with somebody of the opposite sex and if that doesn't rile anything up between the two of you, I give up."
"We both know your lying. You don't give up that easily."
"I meant to say that I give up for the rest of the week." Terra added.
It would be nice to have an actually conversation with Nick without her making kissing noises behind our backs. Elena thought. "And if I refused?"
"Well, that wouldn't be a good idea." Terra cocked her head sideways while pursing her lips. "Here I am, offering you a week of peace from my particular quirks and you still think of saying no?" She reached over to the large puffy sack next to her and opened the bag.
A sweet scent wafted from the opening and into Elena's nose. The delighting smell could not be appreciated; a sour taste filled her mouth as her appendages could feel the sinister aura emanating from the Deceiver pokemon.
"When you told me yesterday that you found other pokemon interested in a training regimen that got me thinking, your strict teaching methods will undoubtedly tire them out, leaving them famished and tired. Those poor mon might need a nice little pick-me-up after a few hours." She plunged her hand into the sack.
Elena's sensitive ears twitched to and fro, hearing Terra mill her hand around inside the bag, casually stirring it up. Whatever was inside was pretty light they barely made any sound as they were tossed around.
Terra's arm stopped moving, and just like a Zubat in any dark cave, was ready to drop down on its hidden quarry away from the Lucario's eyes. "So I asked Pinkie if I could have SOME OF THESE!" Out of the sack her arm flew and in her tiny hand was a massive cupcake. "There was quite a bit left over after one of her parties, so I thought what better way to get rid of them, but to feed your starving students."
She juggles the vile confectionary in the air with one hand. "Have you ever seen a Pichu hyped up on sugar? They can barely contain their own energy normally, but with a sugary boost he will be running everywhere and frying everything in sight…Oh how in the world will he pay attention to your boring speeches of noting your surroundings and looking for your opponent's weak point and blah, blah, blah." Terra stopped tossing the dessert and spun it on the tip of her finger.
"Fine, you win. I will go on this blind double date. Though I have no idea what you are trying to accomplish setting me up with some random male." Elena growled.
Oh, don't you worry your little blue head about it." Terra tossed the cupcake high into the air, and with a quick flip of her head, lifted her massive jaws to catch the falling treat as the mouth slammed shut with a metallic clang. "Guess I'll leave the bag with you. You know, as a gift you can give to your students after you start beating them with your stick."
Appalled, Elena said back, "It is far too early for them to spar with me yet, especially while using Bone Rush."
"Not that stick, hun. I meant the one that's up your-"
Elena's body flared with her aura. Her appendages flowing in the air behind her. Her paws come together as channels her power into a physical form. "Aura-"
"See ya tonight!" She scampered off, laughing off into the distance towards Ponyville.
Blasted Sneavile, what in the world is she up to?
"And what about Nick?" Vinyl Scratch asked. Terra left them alone in the basement as she went off to convince Elena to go for the dinner.
"He would say yes. He is always up for anything." Octavia said back, not lifting her eyes from some mail order catalogue.
"I mean he is doing some pretty odd things around town, so I doubt many other pokemon would agree to be his date."
"Oh we already have his date planned. And we made sure that she will be here tonight." Shutting the shopping book. Just under her breath, Octavia murmured, "Wasn't cheap though."
Vinyl's ears perked up. "What ya say?"
"I said that I should go tell Nick the plan for the evening. Last I heard he was over in Whitetail Woods." Octavia said calmly back, without missing a beat.
"Why is he so far away from town?"
"Well Vinyl, you know that ever since we got back to Ponyville that he has been…experimenting with his new body." Octavia's face scrunches in displeasure. "In a physical sense."
"Oh? OHHH. So like the time when he and Roseluck…" Vinyl started.
"And when Big Mac almost bucked him over the library after he grabbed Applebloom…"
"Eeyup." A twinge of country drawl grabbed hold of the word leaving the refined mare's mouth.
"Great, it's hard to talk to him when he's like that. His eyes roving your body, making you want to take a shower after. You are on your own. If he starts sticking his pointer where it doesn't belong, just bop him on the nose. That always works."
Deep within Whitetail Woods,
"Mmmmm…" A pleasurable moan roamed across the open field.
"Oh god…yessss." Taking in a deep breath of the sweet scent, Nick enjoyed the sensation of having a soft supple body against his own. Nick's new extra friendly buddy was held close to his body. Fur and feathery coats were rubbing against one another as the grass beneath them.
"I never knew doing this could feel so good..." A jolt of pure ecstasy flowed through him, his leg started to spasm as it kicked into the air repeatedly.
"Are you-"A slight hissing sound filled the air. "-almost done?" The small pink pokemon asked with some trepidation.
"Just about…there. Let's try the next one." Nick said, his voice muffled by the feathers of his cuddle buddy.
Before Nick could surrender himself to his senses once more, a voice pierced through to his dazed mind.
"Ummm…Nick? What in heavens are you doing?" He could hear the breath catch in her throat, the way the air was sucked behind her teeth, causing a whistle that barely made a sound. "You're doing again aren't you?"
"I can't help it. I have this craving and I need something or someone to scratch it. Have you ever woke up one day and started to smell? I mean really smell? Everything just smells so…different." He replied back. Burrowing his muzzle deeper into his scented cuddle buddy.
Octavia looked over to the bird Nick held so closely to his face. "Pardon me Miss…Spritzee is it?"
"Spritzee?" The perfume pokemon gave a nod of acknowledgement. Gesturing for Octavia to continue.
"I ask that you forgive my intrusion, but I need to talk to my friend in private, so could you please leave us?"
"Spritz!" With a simple call, a new scent filled the clearing. Nick's nose twitched, his lips started to curl then suddenly he launched the Spritzee high into the air where she took flight and off into the woods.
"IT BURNS, IN THE NAME OF ALL THAT IS SWEET-SCENTED GET AWAY FROM ME!" Smothering his snout with his paws at a horrible attempt to keep the stench away from his sensitive nose. He cursed aloud to the sky until Spritzee flew off, leaving only the earthy smell of nature behind.
After giving Nick some time to appreciate the natural smell of woods, Octavia started to speak. "Now that you are paying attention, we have something to discuss. How would you like to meet a creature you have never seen before?"
With a surprising quick jolt, Nick's lean body sprung up, his long red mane whipping into the air. He body became of crimson blur as he shifted into a pony before landing on four legs back on the ground. "Extremely interested, so this creature is a friend of yours?" He asked.
"Oh no, I have never met her before in my life. She will be your date this evening."
Nick blinked. "I have a date?"
"Well a double date at a 5-Star restaurant."
Nick raised a single eyebrow. "So meeting a new sentient being with free food?"
"Well not exactly free," She murmured. "Yes." Octavia answered.
"Okay I will be there."
Even Octavia was rather surprised by the little amount of hesitation. "Your not wondering about the other couple joining you this evening?"
"I trust you Octavia." Nick said with a smile. "I mean it isn't like you are going to put me into an uncomfortable situation without taking my feelings into account right?"
The ponies and pokemon entered "Trop De Fantaisie Pour Vous" the area of the love operation. Half hour before the start of the operation, the trio made their way to one of the corner booths far enough that nopony could see them without looking for them, yet close enough that they can still see their target's table.
"I keep telling you two that this ain't gonna work." Vinyl said lyrically, and started tug at the deep blue dress she was wearing. "And why the heck am I wearing this thing? It feels like I'm being hugged by Pinkie Pie."
"Because for the plan to work, we need to be undercover." With disapproving click of her tongue, Octavia moved graciously past the waiter to her given seat. Smoothing out the wrinkles on her pink gown. "Your complaints are only meeting deaf ears. Look at what poor Terra has to go through just so we don't draw anyponies attention."
The Mawile in question was in a large flower pot that slid off the back of the waiter and into the open seat next to Octavia. Her once yellow face had be painted brown, blending in with the surrounding soil. Once the waiter was far enough away, Terra's red eyes popped open as her head rose a few inches out the pot.
"Are they here yet?" she whispered, chunks of soil being blown onto the table as she emptied her lungs of air after holding it in since getting through the door.
"No, but they should be shortly." Octavia looked to the menu in front of her, pretending to make up her mind on what to order. "So Terra, who exactly did you set up our dear stoic and emotionally-challenged friend with?"
Suddenly the doors to the restaurant flew open, and walked in a breath-taking sight, or at least he would have been if there were any female pokemon.
His body flowed, through the doorway. Slim, yet very defined, very masculine features drew the eyes of the mares within the restaurant.
"Ladies, you may pick your jaws off the ground and prepare those lips. With my expert matchmaking, you will be kissing my cute yellow behind for me to set you two up." Terra's words practically oozed confidence. "Vinyl, Octavia, you may you continue you to drool over my newly met acquaintance, Mienshao."
"We are not drooling you, you being buried up to your chin in a flower pot all you can see is us opening our mouths. Well we can't really blame, you know, for being so tiny and all."
"I'm gonna let that go, since I don't think these highbrow waiters would take too kindly to a pony-eating plant at one of their tables."
The three pairs of eyes watched the new topic of conversation make his way to the reserved table. "Let me break down his stats for you." Her voice takes on a rather serious tone. "This pokemon's mate potential is quite simply outstanding. He is decently quick on his feet. His brain power is quite fantastic. As for his sexiness…" Terra drifted off while staring across the restaurant. Vinyl and Octavia trailed her eyes to see what had rapped her attention so easily.
Apparently a waiter had dropped a pile of dirty dishes near Mienshao's table and he was being a true gentlecolt and was helping the waiter clean up.
With his fabulous, firm buttocks in the air.
Octavia pretended to check the soil for dampness as she prodded Terra, hard, to get her out of her lusty stupor.
Blinking out of her butt ogling, Terra continued with a yearning look in her eyes, "As for his sexiness…it simply can't be beat." Terra's skin crawled with goose bumps as a freezing sensation was poured over her head.
A dripping glass of water was levitating above the "Venus Fly Trap".
With a curt nod towards Vinyl, Octavia turned to the grounded Mawile. "Have you forgotten romantic books, numbers 25-45? Don't fall for your match-making choice."
Stifling a guffaw, Terra whispered, "Hey, just stating the facts that all us girls in the field egg group know. He ain't my type. I prefer my male with four legs and a rock hard body."
Her eyes darted towards the entrance, as Vinyl pulled herself closer to the wall, she spoke in a hushed voice. "Speaking of males, look who just arrived."
In front of the double doors to the entrance was Nick. His eyes were scanning the restaurant, until the host drew his attention and directed him to his table.
While moving through the numerous patrons and trotting waiters, Vinyl spied the way Nick's eyes constantly shifted around the restaurant, yet avoided direct eye contact with anypony. "He's more nervous than usual."
"New place, new company, general insecurities when surrounded by unknown ponies." Vinyl listed.
"Yet he took to a new body like a fish in water." Octavia said, making Vinyl think back to the way Nick had so easily controlled the illusions he made in Manehatten.
One of the waiters dropped a dirty plate onto his pile dishes with a rather loud crash, making Nick jump at the sound.
"You can take the man out of hu-man. But you can't the mon out of a pokemon." Terra said, still watching Nick as he moved a bit faster towards the table and ahead of the waiter. "Anyway, we took his current behaviour was taken into consideration." Terra's head swivels to the right. "Right Octavia?"
"Of course, before I made the order I made sure that the chosen lady would enjoy the company of our friend."
Made the order? Vinyl thought back to earlier on in the day. With how Octy had her nose stuffed into a catalogue for almost the entire afternoon. Vinyl never look too closely at it, thinking it was one of her Avon binges like usual. But those pictures on the book, they did not look like any house warming gifts. Like lightning, realization lit up her face before she turned to Octavia and accused her in a low voice.
A hearty shove had blasted opened the doors hard enough to hit the walls with such force to make the plates titter on top of the waiter's backs.
"Oh my dear Vinyl Scratch…I did."
Heavy hooves shook the ground as a burly body entered the restaurant.
"There is nothing in this world a pony cannot get with a few bits and express post stamp."
The watched the cow march past the stammering host and straight to the table with Meinshao acting out an extravagant tale by the movements of his arms and poor Nick who was nodding along in agreement while never looking him in the eyes. As she halted before them, both of the males slowly looked up to the towering lady.
Even from this distance, Vinyl could see both pairs of eyes widening like saucers as they took in the tall glass of milk in front of them. Instead of formal clothing, she was armoured like a warrior on her way to battle. Bronze shin guards, skirt and to complete the set, a bronze breastplate. The minotaurous gave the two staring males a relaxed salute before sliding a little too close to the nervous wreck of Nick.
Vinyl could only say this. "What the buck?" Resisting the very urge to stare at the pony-less table housing two pokemon and a minotaur.
"All will be explained my romantically inclined friend." Octavia said.
"Romantically inclined? You know what Octavia-"Vinyl started, getting fed up with her attitude towards love.
"Shhsh, keep your voice down or they might hear us!" Terra hissed. She then motioned with her jaws towards the striding figure heading towards the target table. "And here comes Elena right on schedule."
Just like the minotaur, Elena had already stridden past the sputtering host and straight to the only seen table with pokemon and non-pony creature. With a stiff nod to minotaur and a quiet hello to Nick, she stopped moving when Meinshao was patting the open spot next to him with a smile on his face.
After a moment of hesitation, Elena accepted the invite and took the seat.
"And now we let the magic happen."
Still sore after Octavia's little romance comment, the words from Vinyl's mouth were rather harsh. "So how exactly do you two have this planned out? Does Nick see Meinshao flirt with his mare than slap him with a fish to declare a duel at sunrise like a gentlecolt from the Dark Ages?"
"Oh no of course not. You see we want them to be more than just jealous of each other's dates. We want them to stake a claim if you would on each other as mates. Mienshao and Ceelly Resolve are the catalysts."
"Most females would be jealous of the prettier girl, with the shinier coat and the fancy mane." Octavia stated.
Thinking back to her years in high school in Canterlot, Vinyl remembered how all the stallions bent themselves over backwards just to get some small bit of attention from Princess Cadenza. It would have been nice to have all those guys serving her hand and hoof. She nodded to Octavia to continue.
"Elena is not like most girls."
"You see," Terra started. "Lucario, as a species, are extremely loyal and will battle for its chosen companions until the bitter end. In Elena's mind, only she can protect Nick. Now enter Ceelly Resolve."
Octavia tagged in, "She is a proud member of the Tauren Reserve Corps, and the youngest of a very large and very happy family. She likes a bull that can listen well and doesn't mind quiet nights together."
Vinyl mulled over Octavia's salesmen shtick. "Okay, so she likes the quiet fellas and she's strong to boot. So just because there's a chance she likes Nick Elena will get all territorial?"
"EEEyup." Terra added.
"Terra informed me that since Elena is a Lucario, she can sense the emotions around her. So having some random female hitting on my man and knowing that she is hunkering for a piece of my beef? I wouldn't be too thrilled." She paused for a moment to address their waiter for some refreshments. "At the same time, anypony can see that she can certainly hold her own in a fight. Meaning she could also defend Nick, making Elena obsolete." Octavia leaned back into the seating bench, enjoying the comfort of both the cushion and her plan.
Vinyl was starting to have a real hard time to stay sitting while listening to Octavia talk. "So you're thinking that Ceelly, who just walked in here and sat down, can replace Elena in Nick's mind?" She asked incredulously, hardly believing that these two even came up with this plan.
Terra gave a little huff. "Never. Elena is far too important to him. But for what Elena thinks…" A subtle smirk graced her lips. "She can't exactly be thinking too clearly if she can feel the lust emanating from Ceelly as she jiggles her cowbells at Nick's face. Elena's tough girl act will start to fall to pieces, and soon she will forget her stoic demeanor to plant a wet one on Nick and make sure the entire town doesn't dare lay a hand on her mate."
Pretty shoddy plan with that one. Vinyl told herself. "What about Meinshao?"
"Look at Meinshao," Terra stated. "He is, for the females of field egg group, the epitome of masculinity. Strong, smart and a silver tongue to boot. And he knows it. He oozes confidence with every movement, every word." The fighting pokemon in question was lying back in his seat, both Elena and Ceelly enraptured by his story.
"But Nick? He has having trouble looking anyone in the eye when passing by them on the street, afraid of conversations with strangers thinking that he might say something offensive by accident." The Zoroark in question seemed to be rereading the dessert menu for the sixth time while only speaking a word or two. Nothing more than pleasantries and common courtesies.
Terra continued, "Nick, tiring of the way that Meinshao has captured the attention of his one true love, will break off the chains of his insecurities, astonishing Elena into a stupor with his take charge attitude as he lays down the law on Meinshao and staking a claim on both the heart and body of his new Lucario lover."
Octavia picked up where Terra left off, swooning with every word. "Our stoic Elena, with her heart turned to mush at the sight of Nick breaking free of the chains of his own insecurities for her sake alone would make her fall into his arms to be carried off into the night.
"As the love between them finally blossoms..."Octavia drifted off as a red blush spread cheek to cheek.
Vinyl soon found herself thinking about it as well.
Out in a forest clearing, away from Terra, away from Octavia and far from any chaotic small town bustle of Ponyville. With only a full moon to light night, both Nick and Elena would hold paws, so to never part from one another in the dark.
They would hold each other close, whispering sweet promises to one another that time could never falter. Nick would fall to the ground, his exhausted body aching for a soft grassy bed that grew everywhere he looked. Elena would join him soon after, not from being tired, but from the want to be close to him. Soon his long crimson mane would wrap itself around Elena's cold body pulling her close. She would snuggle into his chest enjoying warmth and the beating of his heart. Their paws would start to roam…
"Then he gets jiggly with her Jigglypuffs."
"Must you be so crass, Terra? We are talking about true love, not some roll in the hay." Octavia chastised.
Terra rolled the comment off with her eyes. "Must I be crass, YES. Because both of you two were thinking the same thing, if the red faces and not hearing a dang word I said was a sign of it. Now back to the matter at hand," She swivels through the dirt of her pot, "Let's see who broke fir-BY THE HAIRS ENTIE!" She cursed aloud, the entire restaurant stood at a standstill as Octavia and Vinyl whipped their heads around to see what caused the outburst.
The couple they were looking at had both of pairs of eyes were closed given in to the senses of taste and touch. Elena looked rather dishevelled. Her fur was ruffled, like it had been combed roughly and repeatedly. Her ears, had pulled themselves down on her head, as a sign of submission to the male that held her tightly in his grasp as she sat in his lap, snout-to-snout sucking face like a Ditto in heat.
But it was not with Nick.
"NOOOOO!" With a mighty wail that shook the chandeliers, Terra exploded out of the pot, pieces of clay and dirt scattering everywhere showering the screaming Octavia and the flabbergasted Vinyl, their once clean dresses, ruined.
Terra leapt off the seat ran past the startled onlookers who had already ducked for cover after the clumps rained down onto their plates.
Elena and Meinshao were too busy playing tonsil hockey to notice the commotion.
Terra marched right to the snogging couple, with her mighty jaws she chomped down on Meinshao, splitting him away from Elena. Terra whipped her head around to launch him across the restaurant and into the kitchen, signalled by the sound of numerous pots and pans being spilled and knocked over.
Absolutely livid, Terra whipped herself around again, turning onto the astonished Elena with her teeth bared. "What in the name of Arcerus are you doing? You shouldn't be kissing him!" Terra's eyes were wide with rage as she continued to bellow into the face of her friend. "This is wrong on so many levels! What on Equues do you see in that sashaying, sleeve swinging cat-chaser?"
There were no words to describe the utter shock on Elena's face.
"Not only that, but kissing-no even TOUCHING him is a crime against the very nature of your WHOLE DAMN SPECIES!" Terra grabbed each of her long black ears and yanked hem down painfully past her chin before letting them spring back up and flail her arms as she continued the rant. "You stupid COW!" Terra bellowed as her tiny fists punched the thigh of her former friend.
That sounds wrong. Vinyl thought. It appeared that Terra came to the same conclusion, she tentatively punched Elena's thigh again.
The blue and black fur, rippled from the touch, spreading across Elena's body as the currents went up to her head and back.
As the body continued to ripple and flow, Vinyl caught a glimpse of something outside the window near the table. Even in night, she saw a flash red.
With each ripple, the Lucario's fur began to change. It changed color, shift from blue, darkening to brown. Her chest spike shrunk and liquefied itself as it spread across her chest, darkening in colour. The paws of her feet transformed from soft soles to hard hooves. She also gained about two feet in height. And Vinyl watched as the stupefied face of Elena was actually the fuming face of an extremely peeved off minotaur.
Elena was actually Ceelly. But how on Equues…Another flash of crimson drew Vinyl's eyes yet again, and she did a double-take to make sure she what she was seeing. Outside of the restaurant, two faces were pressed against the glass window. Smiles of absolute satisfaction were across each muzzle as Nick and Elena watched the scene inside with dark mirth.
Terra's eyes widened as she watched the steam scream out of Ceelly's nose and ears. Swallowing her pride, she begins to back up, only to hit wall of fur and soggy half-cooked food.
"Oh so your one of those purists like the Pokemon Rangers Miss Terra?" The smooth voice of Mienshao reached her ears. His hot breath breathing down on top of her head.
Terra could feel his eyes move from the hole he burned in the back of her skull to the still fuming minotaur. "My dear Ceelly, would you like a demonstration of pokemon techniques? And you can show me how your people fight as well of course."
The sound of knuckles cracking put a shiver through Terra's spine. Or was it the way that both Meinshao and Celly Resolve were getting closer?
"Since I believe we found the perfect practice dummy." Meinshao stated, before charging up a move.
A light was casting a shadow behind Terra, and she really did not want to know where it was coming from.
As tables were crushed and a screaming yellow creature was tossed back and forth across the dining room, landing onto tables, counters and some poor mare's large hat, Vinyl simply sipped her drink as her eyes followed Terra.
Octavia had just settled for bashing her head against the table repeatedly.
"This feels like a good time for me to lay down some of my own love wisdom, but I think it you and Terra have almost learned your lesson."
"What are you even talking about? Can't you see we are in a middle of a crisis! Terra is an impromptu volleyball, Nick and Elena are nowhere to be found and this entire evening was a complete and utter disaster!"
"Oh, come on Octy. It can't be that bad. I mean it's not like you are going to have pay for all the damages…OH wait, the reservation was made in your name wasn't it, Miss-Casanova? And that big stuffed shirt who is heading this way must be the manager."
A loud and long groan was only the response.
Vinyl was whistling a rather peppy tune trotting alongside a poorer Octavia, with Terra slung across her back, bruised and unconscious.
"I've been waiting the whole night for this to blow up in both your faces. And I gotta say, that was better than anything I could have imagined."
Grumbles and groans were the only voices heard as Vinyl laughed them off. "Now is the time for you two to listen up. Since you both have been going the wrong way with your love-meddling." She clears her throat to speak loudly into the night, much to the chagrin of her friends.
True love ain't some loud, inspiring orchestral piece, like you think it is.
With their soft paws padding against the packed ground, no sound could be heard as Nick was darting around the deserted road laughing manically. The state the restaurant was in when they left it behind and beating Terra was getting for her little presumption was hilarious.
And in this rare occasion when they actually pulled the wool over Terra's eyes, Elena was joined Nick in his revelry.
That fancy stuff is only for newlyweds and frenzied, horny teenagers.
She pranced after him like it was a drunken game of tag, when she finally caught him. With a small yank, Nick flopped back toward her.
He stifled his laugh behind his toothy smile, settling himself in a decent pace beside Elena as they continued to walk along in silence, save the occasional giggle.
True love is like the bass track in a mix. It does not flare up to astound and wonder the listeners.
The two pokemon relaxed, basking in the silence of the beautiful night. Just like they always did while on the road back on Earth. Words were never really needed between them.
It is always there in the background. Whether it pulses and pounds so deeply that you can feel it in your bones,
Elena could not help but to take a rather appreciative glance of Nick. As a human, he was simply…human. But ever since seeing him again in Manehattan, she found herself sneaking glances whenever that blasted imp was not looking.
Nick's mane was wild and unkempt. If it was not for that little hairband he would be nothing but a tall, handsome, crimson mess.
Handsome? Elena caught herself. Surely many members of the field group in town have noticed it, so it had become a fact. Many pokemon and humans alike found Zoroarks attractive. Rarely seen, they hide behind their illusions away from those that would hunt them. Those who would judge their lives from a single glance. These Dark-Type pokemon needed their masks, for they could never truly feel safe surrounded those different from them.
Yet, here was one standing beside her right now. He was comfortable. There was no mask, no shadows, nothing that stopped Elena from seeing the beauty that lied beneath it all. Only when a Zoroark truly trusted another person, then all the illusions fade away showing what they were really feeling.
When they were actually happy, they would laugh. When saddened they would cry. They do not pretend around those they considered truly special to them.
Elena stopped walking.
Nick continued a few more steps before turning to check on his first friend. Their eyes met.
Or if it barely heard, just keeping the tempo of the song.
Nick could not help but stare into Elena's eyes. Before coming to Equues, he could tell a lot of what she was thinking of by looking in her eyes. Perhaps because she was the first one who truly listened to him, and so he did same for her, words are unnecessary between two individuals who truly knew one another.
Something was there behind her unwavering gaze. She was asking him something. Something that he had been thinking about for years, and now that he was liberated from his previous life. There was nothing to stop him from doing the one he wanted to do since arriving in Equestria.
Nick raised his paw towards Elena, waiting for her reply.
Elena answered by taking his paw with her own. A smile mirrored on both their muzzles.
You just gotta wait till it drops.