Rarity lay on her bed, giggling away at the book she was reading. "Oh Side Line, you beautiful hard working stallion you." She giggled to herself. "Oh what I wouldn't give to have some pony like you in my life." The white unicorn turned the page, still giggling to herself. "Oh Dew Drop, this is so romantic… now just kiss him, kiss him you foal!"
The front door bell ringing interrupted Rarity's thoughts. "COMING! Oh it always seems I'm interrupted whenever I get to this part." Rarity closed the book and shoved it aside as she hopped off her bed and trotted to the front room of her boutique. "Welcome to Carousel Boutique, where everything is Clique, Chic, and Magi- YOU!" Rarity's eyes narrowed as she got a look at who had entered her store.
"Pah, if I had known who ran this place I certainly wouldn't have entered it." Trixie said, looking away from Rarity. "It's not like the Great and Powerful Trixie would need any of your amateurish designs anyway." She was not wearing the wizard costume that she had on last time she had come to Ponyville, but was quite plain in her appearance.
"Oh you did NOT!" Rarity said, snorting in anger. "What is it you want, if you're not looking for some of my magnificent designs then just get out."
"If you must know, I am looking for that bothersome purple unicorn that…" Trixie made a slight noise that sounded like something was caught in her throat. "That unicorn that I saw when I was last here."
"You mean Twilight?" Rarity asked, a little confused. "Whatever do you want to see her for?"
"The Great and Powerful Trixie does not need to reveal her motivations to some foal like you." Trixie said with a little sniff.
"Oh? And I guess the Great and Powerful Trixie can just find Twilight on her own, without my help." Rarity said with a slight chuckle. "She won't mind asking everypony where she lives, would she?"
"The Great and Powerful Trixie does not need to ask everypony anything." Trixie said, turning around and facing Rarity. "Do you dare mock me? Do I need to teach you another lesson?"
"Oh, I think it is I who should to the teaching today." Rarity said with a malicious grin on her face. Trixie took a nervous step back, but before she could say anything the white unicorn pounced.
Fifteen minutes later Rarity stood, tired at struggling with the blue unicorn but satisfied. Trixie stood there, rather disgruntled wearing a rather frilly red dress and wide-brimmed straw hat. "There, now THERE'S something that you can go into town wearing." Rarity chuckled as she looked at Trixie's expression.
"Take this ridiculous outfit off of me this INSTANT!" Trixie shouted, stamping her hoof and looking at Rarity.
"I will if you tell me why you want to see Twilight." Rarity said, a smirk on her face. When Trixie opened her mouth to protest Rarity interrupted. "Ah ah ah, either you tell me or I dump you in the middle of town square looking like this." Rarity honestly didn't think that Trixie looked all that bad, but she knew that the style of wear was not what the unicorn would be desired to be seen in public.
"Very well, I wish to learn something from the purple unicorn you call Twilight Sparkle." Trixie said, "But I will not divulge what. Now get this obnoxious thing off of me."
"Certainly." Rarity said, starting to undo the fastens that were keeping Trixie from escaping from the dress herself. "And I might as well tell you where Twilight lives." Rarity watched as Trixie slipped out of the outfit and tossed the hat aside. "She lives in Ponyville's library, you can't miss it it's a giant tree."
"A giant tree… that's a library… that's also a house…" Trixie said with a look of exasperation on her face.
"Yes, now please get out. I've got lots of… work to do." Rarity said, shoving Trixie towards the door. "Go on, go go go." Trixie snorted, but left without further comment. Rarity smiled to herself, she had managed to get back at that annoying braggart after all this time. True, Twilight had shown up the unicorn when they had last met but there was a certain satisfaction of doing it yourself.
Rarity trotted back to her bed, and had just opened up her book when the front door's bell rang again. "Ugh, who could it be this time?" Rarity wondered, but it didn't take long to find out as her bedroom door opened and Rainbow Dash came flying in.
"Hi Rarity, I need some… advice." Rainbow Dash said, a sheepish blush appearing on her face. Rarity looked at her friend astonished. Rainbow Dash seemed to be the last pony in Equestria to be sheepish, let alone ask for her advice.
"Certainly Rainbow Dash, what is it you need help with?" Rarity said, closing her book again with mournful disappointment.
"Now I ask you to keep this a secret." Rainbow Dash said, landing on the floor and looking Rarity straight in the eye. "Can you promise me that you won't tell ANYPONY what I'm about to ask you about?"
"Of course Rainbow, I won't tell a soul" Rarity said. She could feel the eagerness welling up inside her, this had to be good.
Rainbow Dash took a breath, before expounding on her problem. "Ok, so everypony knows I'm gay, at least I think everypony knows I'm gay. And I've been idly on the lookout for a good-looking filly to go out with, but every one I've asked has turned me down. There's this one filly that I really have my eye on but I know she'll reject me as she's already told me she's not a fillyfooler. Then the other day Pinkie Pie asked me if I would go out on a date with her, and it just seemed to come completely out of nowhere. I don't know what to do because I wasn't expecting it from Pinkie Pie, and I have no idea what kind of date she'd take me on. Moreover I know that Pinkie Pie is a bit of a loud mouth and that if I outright rejected her I'm sure the whole town would know about it, but I'm not sure if I actually have feelings for Pinkie Pie, but she seemed so sincere that I don't know how to tell it to her nicely that I'm not interested in dating, but I'm not actually sure that I am really not interested in dating her, and and and…" Rainbow Dash took several deep breaths as the tsunami of words took a break.
Rarity took her chance and dived straight in. "Rainbow Dash, you yourself said you were looking for a young filly to date." She said, trying to push aside the fact that a pony had asked Rainbow Dash out while she was essentially left to solitude. "And somepony decided to ask you out."
"Yeah but it's PINKIE PIE! She's, like, one of my closest friends! Hell, possibly even my best friend, but I can only deal with so much of her at a time." Rainbow Dash said, holding her hooves out in exasperation. "I mean, she's cute and all but she's WAY to hyper and random."
"Don't you think you can give her a chance" Rarity said, "I mean, yes I know Pinkie Pie is random and loud and can be obnoxious sometimes, but she means well. And after all wouldn't you want somepony to give you the chance, even if they didn't like your attitude?"
"ATTITUDE?!" Rainbow Dash cried out, "What attitude? I don't have an attitude!"
"Oh darling, I'm talking about how brash and… well tomboyish you are." Rarity said waving a hoof around. "I'm not saying that you have anything negative about you." Though there is that whole 'I'm better than everyone else' mentality you have. Rarity thought to herself, though I don't think that you could ever see that unless somepony like Applejack pointed it out to you.
"Oh, well of course I'd want to be given a chance." Rainbow Dash said, "But seriously…" Dash caught Rarity's gaze and sighed. "Fine, I'll give her a chance. But I'm telling you, I don't think I will end well. But if you say so, thanks Rarity." Rainbow Dash waved and trotted out of the room.
Rarity sighed to herself, picking her book back up again. How many times had she read it, or any of her romance books? And how long has she been single. She would have thought that not caring if she fell in love with a colt or a filly would have doubled her chances of finding that somepony special in her life. She would have thought that always looking at her prime would have increased her chances of finding that somepony special in her life. She would have thought, but no matter. That somepony special would come, though perhaps she would need to be on the offensive for a while.
Would that be lady like? To be aggressive in finding somepony? She thought to herself as she lay there with her open book. She shrugged, and went back to her book. She was getting to her favorite part and she didn't want to miss out on it.
* * *
Two days later Rarity was at the Spa, talking with her best friend Fluttershy. They gossiped most of the morning, but near the end just as Rarity was getting relaxed in the bath she heard a small squeak from Fluttershy.
"Umm… Rarity, could I ask you for some advice?" Fluttershy said in a small voice.
"But of COURSE darling." Rarity said, leaning towards her best friend. "Anything you need at all I'd be more than happy to help you out."
"Well… umm… It's kinda embarrassing…" Fluttershy said, "And I'm nervous people will judge me for it."
"There's no judgment between us," Rarity said, sliding over and patting Fluttershy on the back. "Whatever you say I'll take it well."
"Well, there's this filly that I have a crush on…" Fluttershy said, trailing off. Rarity gasped in surprise startling the yellow pegasus. "Oh, did I say something wrong? I'm sorry…"
"No no no, nothing's wrong dear." Rarity said, "I'm just surprised that… that you haven't told this to me earlier! Yes, unless it's relatively recent." Although I never took you for a fillyfooler Fluttershy. You always seem so quiet though, I guess it doesn't come up much. And you'd never be like Rainbow Dash and flaunt it around. Rarity thought to herself.
"Well, I don't know how to get this filly to notice me." Fluttershy said nervously, "I-I mean I know she knows I exist, we're friends after all. But I just don't know how to… well… you know…" Fluttershy blushed.
"I see… well who is the lucky pony?" Rarity asked.
"Well, I couldn't say…" Fluttershy said in a small voice.
"Oh come on, you can tell me." Rarity coaxed, sliding a little closer to Fluttershy.
"No, I really can't…" Fluttershy said, shrinking slightly back against the wall of the bath.
"Come on, tell me." Rarity said, swirling around to the front of Fluttershy. "Pretty Please?" She batted her eyelashes. If she was honest with herself she was getting a little hopeful. If Fluttershy was so nervous about telling her then perhaps it was she who was Fluttershy's crush?
Rarity was thinking back to one of her books, where Morning Dew asked the object of her affections how best to get a colt's attention. He pressured her, and she learned that he loved her as much as she loved him. True, Rarity was unsure if she was in love with Fluttershy but she was open to any possibility.
"Alright, I'm in love with…" And Fluttershy trailed off, the name of her crush lost in a squeak.
"What was that dear? I didn't quite catch that." Rarity said smiling a little wider than usual.
"I'm in love with…" Fluttershy descended into the bath and the name was once again lost, though this time to an underwater murmur.
"One more time sweetheart, you can do it." Rarity said, pulling Fluttershy above the water again.
"I'm in love with… with… Twilight Sparkle." Fluttershy blushed deeply as she said the name. Rarity tried her hardest not to react, the small twitch in her face must have been noticed by Fluttershy. Curse her attention to detail. "Oh, I didn't upset you did I? Rarity?"
"No, no not at all." Rarity said to Fluttershy. "Would you look at that, I'm starting to get all pruned, I think I've had enough of the spa for today." Rarity got out of the bath and into her robe. "I'll see you around Fluttershy. Same time next week?"
"Oh yes, but are you sure you're not upset Rarity?" Fluttershy asked, concern in her face.
"Oh no." Rarity replied, laughing a little unnaturally. "I'm fine, really. I just need to get out for a bit. Plus I've got a large back-order of… things to do." Rarity smiled, as she left the bath.
An hour later Rarity was wandering the town square, thinking to herself. It seemed that everypony had somepony special in their life, everypony other than Rarity. Pinkie Pie wanted Rainbow Dash, though Rarity hasn't heard any news from that front yet. She didn't know if they had their first date or if it was going well or anything. And Fluttershy was in love with Twilight, though exactly why Rarity couldn't explain. Twilight was such a book worm, and though that had its own charm there really wasn't anything out of the ordinary about her. Other than the fact that she was relatively new in Ponyville, perhaps that's why Fluttershy took a shine to her? Was it that Fluttershy had a thing for the mysterious background type? Rarity could see that appeal somewhat, but she knew she wanted either a pony of unimaginable wealth and fame, or somepony hard-working and down to earth that she could rely on.
Rarity sighed as she walked over to a bench and slumped into it, feeling dejected. "Rarity?" Rarity looked around at the familiar voice. Twilight Sparkle walked up to the White Unicorn, looking a little concerned at the slumped over unicorn. "You alright?"
"Oh fine, just fine. A little tired is all." Rarity said, getting up from the bench. She couldn't help but feel slightly jealous of Twilight, the pony had somepony who was in love with them. Obviously Twilight had no idea of this, and Rarity didn't want to be the one to enlighten her. Let Fluttershy work on that.
"Oh, well ok. I'm just looking for Trixie, have you seen her?" Twilight asked looking around.
"Trixie? TRIXIE? Why on earth are you looking for her of all ponies?" Rarity asked in utter shock. "She's so full of herself, and she turned my hair green, GREEN TWILIGHT! GREEN! Such an awful color."
"I know I know, but she's trying to change." Twilight said returning her gaze to Rarity. "At least I think she is. She came to ask for instruction from me a couple of days ago, she's hardly left the house at all. Then I get this weird love letter and-" Twilight was cut off by Rarity's gasp.
"Love letter? Oh from whom darling, you absolutely MUST tell me." Rarity said, cozying right up next to the purple unicorn.
"That's just it, I don't know who. They didn't sign their name." Twilight said.
Oh Fluttershy, is this why you had to tell me of your crush on Twilight? Because you had already tried to confess your love in a letter? Rarity thought to herself. How romantic.
"The really weird thing is it was sent through Spike, and not the usual post." Twilight continued. "The only one who sends me letters through spike is Princess Celestia, but it didn't look like her script at all."
Rarity seemed to deflate inside, and her face fell ever so slightly. It wasn't Fluttershy who had sent the letter. But if it wasn't Fluttershy then who was it? Did this mean that Twilight had another admirer? Does that mean that Twilight… Twilight had two admirers? How could Twilight, TWILIGHT of all ponies, end up with two ponies after her?
Why couldn't she, Rarity, have two admirers? Why couldn't she have at least ONE admirer? Wasn't she beautiful enough? Wasn't she successful enough? She had dresses featured by Hoity Toity after all, she was successful. Sure, she wasn't the richest pony, but she wasn't exactly dirt poor either. She had her whole store paid off after all, and she made decent enough money. But money shouldn't be everything.
Rainbow Dash had Pinkie Pie, at least Rarity thought that she had Pinkie Pie. What was it that drove Pinkie Pie to ask Rainbow out? Surely it wasn't looks was it? Rainbow Dash was never one for fashion, her mane and tail were worn just however they were out of bed. She didn't even go to the trouble that Applejack did to tie it back. Then it had to be a personality thing, something about Rainbow Dash's personality must have just clicked with Pinkie Pie.
What about her own personality, Rarity wondered, that was lacking? Was there something about her over critical attention to detail that drove ponies away? Certainly not, any sensible pony would also have attention to such detail. At the very least they would be able to appreciate that about her, and not think of it as some sort of flaw. Applejack appreciated that about her, or at least she had said that about her.
Then there was Twilight, two ponies after her. What was it about Twilight that was so magnetic? Rarity had to admit to herself that she herself could see herself dating Twilight, but only if Twilight made the first move. Rarity didn't want to impose herself on her friend. But Twilight's main appeal was that she was cute, extraordinarily cute. She didn't have the intrinsic beauty that Rarity herself had, she didn't have the same grace, and she certainly was far too bookwormish to have any amount of real charisma. And yet, she had two ponies who were apparently smitten with her.
"Rarity?" Twilight asked, interrupting Rarity's thoughts. "You've been standing there for a whole minute, are you ok?"
"Oh fine, I just think I need to be alone for a bit." Rarity said, walking away.
"You never told me if you saw Trixie!" Twilight called back.
"I JUST VANT TO BE ALONE!" Rarity cried, running away from the purple unicorn. She could feel her eyes getting moist, but she did all she could to hold back her tears. Rarity didn't even pay attention to where she was going, running right past Carousel Boutique and not stopping until she realized that she was at Sweet Apple Acres.
Rarity sat down, looking over the orchard feeling more lonely than she had felt in a long time. Was there no one out there for her? Could she never find that one stallion of her dreams? She knew that she could even go with a filly if she had the chance, she didn't care.
The white unicorn looked over the Acres, and her eyes fell on Applejack. The orange earth pony hadn't noticed her, so caught up in her work. Though she had no attention to style, and sometimes cleanliness, Applejack was still a good pony. She was hard working, loyal, and above all she was honest. She seemed to be the perfect rugged pony that was one of Rarity's fantasies. But would it work out? The more Rarity watched Applejack the more she could feel her heart race.
Sure Applejack wasn't a bucking stallion, but she was a hard worker that would be able to care for Rarity. The more she thought about it the more she became convinced that Applejack was the one that she was destined to be with. But how to ask her out? Rarity wondered to herself, not while she was working obviously. This would require proper romantic planning. Rarity got to her feet and almost skipped all the way back to her Boutique, she was so filled with happiness.
Back in her bedroom, Rarity was going over ways of asking Applejack out without coming across to forward. She had outright rejected asking her out while on Sweet Apple Acres, coming to the lover's home is something that should only be done by some strong stallion or stallion like figure. But Rarity had to admit that she couldn't wait for Applejack to realize that she had feelings for her. If her books had told her anything then it was sometimes good to be slightly assertive and go after your mark rather than constant flirting and hoping that he or she will notice.
What she needed was some social interaction to get Applejack partially alone with. Pinkie Pie was good at those things, perhaps she could convince the pink pony to throw a party. It shouldn't be hard, but would she need a good reason? Perhaps, perhaps not. Pinkie Pie had been known to throw parties with little to no warning or reason.
"Hi Rarity!" As if Rarity's thoughts had summoned her Pinkie Pie burst through the door, bouncing up and down.
"Oh Pinkie Pie, I was just thinking about you." Rarity said, watching as the Pink Pony bounced around.
"You were? Wow, that's just super-duper because I was just thinking about you!" Pinkie Pie said, finally coming to a stop in front of Rarity. "I was just thinking about how super-duper it would be if you were to come to the party I'm having later today!"
"Oh! Well I'd love to come, what's the occasion?" Rarity asked, her spirits elating. This was exactly what she had wanted, precisely what she needed to win Applejack over.
"Trixie!" Pinkie Pie shouted, bouncing up and down.
"Trixie?" Rarity replied confused.
"Trixie!!" Pinkie said bouncing slightly on the spot.
"Trixie." Rarity replied again, this time in a flat tone.
"Yeah, she just moved in with Twilight to be her student! She's been here for a few days now and she looks so lonely, I don't think she has any friends. Then I got this idea while I was rolling around on the ground, why not throw a super duper party for Trixie so she can have lots of friends!" Pinkie Pie said jumping a little on the spot. "I can't wait to see you there! I've got to go tell everyone else now!" Pinkie Pie bounced out of the room again.
Rarity giggled to herself, it didn't matter the reason behind the party to her anymore. She knew Applejack would be there, so she was fair game at the party. "Oh, but I have to be ready! I need to look good for Appl- I mean Trixie's Party." Rarity said to herself, she slid over to her vanity mirror and began to get herself ready. She didn't want to look too formal, not for a welcoming party, but she wanted to look her best never the less.
Rarity arrived at the party with high spirits. She ran into Rainbow Dash hovering just above the crowd inside of Sugar Cube Corner, and waved cheerily.
"You seem like you're in an unusually good mood today Rarity." Rainbow Dash said, looking slightly suspicious.
"Oh, I've just got my eye on a particularly pretty filly tonight." Rarity said, glancing around for any sight of Applejack.
"A filly? YOU? I didn't take you as a fillyfooler Rarity." Rainbow Dash said surprised. "Didn't you say that you wanted to marry Princess Celestia's nephew?"
"It doesn't matter really does it?" Rarity said with a mischievous grin. "I just feel really lucky tonight that's all."
"Alright, care to tell me who you're aiming for tonight then?" Rainbow Dash said, landing next to Rarity and lending an ear.
"Only if you promise not to tell her." Rarity said, her heart fluttering. It was all just so like those books she had read over and over again. The beautiful young girl telling a friend of her crush, the pair would giggle before the young girl manages to convince her crush to kiss her by night's end.
"I promise." Rainbow Dash said, "On my honor."
"It's Applejack." Rarity half-whispered in Rainbow Dash's ear, followed by a quick giggle of delight.
"APPLEJACK!?" Rainbow Dash said taking a step back out of shock.
"Hush Rainbow, she might hear you." Rarity said, waving her hoof around trying to get the pegasus to calm down.
"Fine fine," Rainbow Dash said, "But you do know she's not gay right?"
"Oh Rainbow Dash, you're such a kidder." Rarity said with a slight laugh. "Oh! I see her across the room, I'll see you around Rainbow Dash."
"This isn't going to end well…" Rainbow Dash said, watching Rarity trot towards Applejack. "But if this works I would have kept beating myself up for nothing."
"Hey Rarity, nice to see you here." Applejack said as she watched the white unicorn canter up to her.
"It's a pleasure to see you too Applejack, and might I just add you look lovely today." Rarity said, fluttering her eyelashes.
"Why thank you Rarity, you look mighty fine yourself." Applejack said smiling.
"I-" Rarity started to say but was interrupted by a shout from across the room.
"CAKE EVERYBODY!" Pinkie Pie called out, causing both Rarity and Applejack to look around. Pinkie Pie was wheeling out a huge blue cake topped with candles. Rarity watches as Trixie attempted to blow out the candles several times, each time they relit.
"Serves her right." Rarity chuckled to herself.
"Now don't go being all judgmental." Applejack said, "Twilight said that she's trying to change, we should at least give her that chance."
"I suppose you're right Applejack." Rarity said, sighing as she watched Trixie put the candles out with some magic. "Shall we get some cake Applejack?"
"Nah." Applejack said, "I mean you can have some, but I'm still somewhat full from my supper."
"Of course, after working so hard all day you must have been hungry." Rarity said, batting her eyelashes again.
"Working? Nah, today was my day off. I went to the bar, had a couple of beers, went home, ate, then came here." Applejack said, "I don't have to work every day after all."
"Oh, o-of course not." Rarity said, a little startled. She could have sworn that she saw Applejack working earlier that day. Could it be that she was only imagining things because she was so used to seeing Applejack working?
"You ok Rarity?" Applejack asked, "You seem flustered."
"Oh, no no, I'm fine." Rarity said taking a few small steps in a circle. "Applejack, did I ever tell you how much that hat compliments you? It looks really good on you."
"My hat? Oh yeah, my pappy gave it to me. It's a real treasured possession." Applejack said, caressing the brim lightly with one hoof.
She's not catching on Rarity, The white unicorn thought to herself. It's time for drastic measures. Come on, you can do this, just like Dew Drop. Just ask her out on a date, what's the worst that could happen?
"A-Applejack?" Rarity said, stuttering slightly. She was starting to feel feint from nerves, but she held herself in check.
"Yeah sugar cube?" Applejack said, "Something you need?"
This is it, it's now or never. Rarity thought to herself as she took a deep breath. "Do you think you could possibly go on a date with me this weekend?" Rarity asked. She watched as Applejack blushed slightly. Her spirits rose, if her books had told her anything blushing was a sure sign of a yes.
"Sorry sugar cube, but mah barn just don't swing that way." Applejack said a little sheepishly. "I'm a might flattered that you think of me in that light, but I don't think it could work out all that well."
Rarity just stood there. She could feel all the warmth in her body replaced by a cold empty feeling. A pressure was starting to well in her chest. I've been rejected… she thought to herself. I was rejected by… Applejack. How could this be? She was supposed to accept, she's just perfect for me why didn't she accept?
"Rarity? Are you alright?" Applejack said, concern in her voice. She was still blushing rather deeply.
"No, I'm fine." Rarity said in a slightly choked voice as she took a few steps back.
"This don't mean we can't be friends or nothin'. You know that right?" Applejack said, giving a sheepish smile.
"I know…" Rarity said, turning on Applejack. "I think I just need to be alone for a bit." The unicorn walked a short distance before breaking into a run. Applejack just watched sheepishly as Rarity teared up and ran. I guess I'll never find true love. Rarity thought to herself as she ran to her house. Never, I can't do it. Rarity burst into her bedroom collapsing on her bed, and she began to cry.
To Be Continued…