Midnight Bloom sat quietly in the kitchen, studying for her magic exam which was to take place tomorrow. As always, she was looking for any possible excuse to interrupt her schoolwork, and today, salvation came in the shape of a bottle. She’d always meant to ask her parents about that bottle, and because she had something more important and boring to do, now was the perfect time. She lifted it magically off of its perch on top of the buffet and trotted into the living room.
“Momma!” Midnight called, trotting up to where Applejack was resting on the couch. AJ perked her ears up as she heard her daughter calling for her.
“Ain’tcha s’posed ta be studyin’, Middie?” the farmer asked. Midnight blew this question off, because she and AJ both knew the answer.
“What’s the deal with this bottle?” Midnight asked, floating it over into Applejack’s waiting hooves. Applejack turned it around a few times, a smile crossing her face.
“Ah never toldja ‘bout this?” she asked. Midnight shook her head. AJ patted the space on the couch next to her, and Midnight sat down, snuggling up next to her for storytime, just like she would when she was a younger filly.
“Well, Middie, it all happened a long time ago…”
“C’mon, Twi! It’ll be fun!” the farmer said, grinning.
“I don’t know, Applejack…” Twilight said, looking side to side. “I tried alcohol once…frankly, it was disgusting.” AJ smiled and patted Twilight on the back; perhaps just a smidge too hard, as Twi nearly lost her balance on the barstool.
“Then ya musta been tryin’ the wrong stuff!” Applejack said, following the statement with a chuckle. “Here, Ah’ll order ya somethin’ sweet.” Before Twilight could raise a hoof to object, AJ had beckoned the bartender over. “Gimme a bottle’f yer finest hard cider!” The bartender happily obliged. AJ smiled to Twilight. “Don’t worry yer pretty lil’ head, Twi. This stuff’s plum delicious.” Twilight tried to object again, but was once more interrupted as the bottle of hard cider was placed in front of her. The unicorn looked it over, still quite unsure of herself.
“Erm…are you SURE it’s okay?” Twilight asked. “I always read that sometimes all it takes is one drink to get addic-” Twilight’s sentence was cut short by a glass full of cider being put to her lips by Applejack.
“Jus’ enjoy it!” Applejack said, and tilted the glass. Twilight reluctantly took a sip of the frothy beverage. She prepared to react with disgust, but she simply couldn’t. This was just marvelous! Applejack grinned, not even needing a verbal response from Twilight. She could see the glint in her eye. “Ah TOLDJA ya’d like it!” Twilight smiled and nodded in response.
“This isn’t like that other drink I tried!” Twilight said, looking at her glass. “This is delicious!” She lifted the glass to her mouth and took another sip. How could anything that was bad for somepony taste this good?
“Ah never lie, Twilight!” AJ said, laughing. “Ya said it yerself!” Twilight giggled and nodded. She wasn’t called the Element of Honesty for nothing. “Now you jus’ sit right here an’ enjoy yerself. Ah gotta run ta the lil’ mares room.” AJ gave her date a nuzzle, then slipped off of the barstool and trotted away to do just what she’d said she was going to do.
Twilight finished her glass with a smile. She even licked the rim of the glass, trying to get every last bit of flavorful goodness out. She looked at her empty glass, then at the bottle. Surely Applejack wouldn’t mind if she had another glass. She poured herself a second glass and finished this one in short order. It felt sooooooo good running down her throat. It had a very slight bit of the burning sensation that the other drink she’d tried had possessed, but it was mostly masked by the sweet, rich flavor. She adored it. AJ certainly wouldn’t mind if she had a third glass.
An hour later, AJ sat next to Twilight in the library bathroom. She held the unicorn’s mane back as she revisited her drinks for the evening.
“The whole bottle.” Applejack said incredulously. “Ah cain’t b’lieve ya drank the whole dang bottle.” Twilight looked up at her, eyes red and tears streaking down her cheeks.
“This is terrible…” was all Twilight could mutter. AJ rolled her eyes and gave Twilight a nuzzle.
“Ah gotta say, Ah’m a lil’ impressed that a lil’ mare like you managed that whole thing b’fore Ah had ta cart ya out,” Applejack told her. “Yer tougher than ya look.” Twilight managed a small smile before she was forced to turn back to the toilet. AJ continued to hold her mane back, stroking her back with her free forehoof.
“And you saved the bottle?” Midnight asked, head tilted. Applejack nodded with a smile.
“S’from our first date, Middie,” AJ said, ruffling Midnight’s mane. “We had a whole lot more like that. ‘Cept Momma Twi handled herself jus’ a bit better in the rest.” Midnight laughed. She couldn’t even imagine Momma Twi drinking at all. AJ gave Midnight a kiss on the cheek. “Now y’all best get back ta studyin’. Ya got a big day t’morrow. An’ don’t tell Momma Twi that Ah toldja that story.” Midnight nodded with a smile and slid off of the couch, heading back to the kitchen. AJ stretched out on the couch. She turned the bottle around a few times, happily reminiscing for as long as she could, before she was hit in the face with a pillow. AJ sat up quickly and looked over to the doorway.
“…How long ya been there?” AJ asked sheepishly.
“The entire time,” Twilight responded. AJ stammered a bit, but was silenced by another playful smack from the pillow. Twilight hopped onto the couch next to AJ and leaned on her, giggling.
“That really was a fun night,” Twilight said. “Except for the very end.” AJ nodded, leaning back. Twilight lit her horn up and floated a full cider bottle and two glasses over to the couch. She filled them and the two shared a toast. Twilight grinned mischeviously.
“I’ll just make sure to tell Middie about your infamous bender a few nights later,” the unicorn said with a smirk. Applejack started to object, but then let it be, chuckling. It was only fair.
Norse Pony’s comments: D’awww, that was all kinds of cute. I very much enjoyed the interpersonal dynamics between AJ and Twilight. Fine work.