Gilda the griffon sat alone and deep in thought atop a lone cloud, her eyes glued upwards toward the vast, blue skies. She laid on her back, claws behind her head, wings folded at her sides, allowing the tiny cloud to carry her away as it slowly drifted along the wind currents. Far off in the distance was the town of Ponyville, where the griffon had departed from only a few hours before in a huff. There was hardly a sound to be heard. It was truly peaceful. Gilda sighed heavily.
However, despite the quiet and serenity, there was nothing but a violent, hectic war of intense emotions raging in Gilda's heart. The memory of Rainbow Dash, the only friend who still kept in touch after graduation, telling her off in front of all those ponies replayed itself over and over. Just like that, they were no longer friends, or even acquaintances anymore. It was incredibly difficult for Gilda to wrap her mind around it; it just seemed unbelievable that their relationship had fallen out in such a way.
'Geez...is there anything I can do now?' she wondered, clicking her tongue against the roof of her beak in dissatisfaction. It made her feel physically ill to consider apologizing for her actions, but at this point, it didn't seem like she had much choice. She really didn't want to lose Rainbow Dash, after all.
Suddenly, Gilda's concentration was broken by a familiar sound; the steady flapping of wings. More precisely, the wings of a pegasus pony.
Gilda sat up, a tiny slimmer of hope making her believe, for just a brief moment, that her possibly-former friend had actually come out looking for her. Instead, all she saw was a rather timid pegasus with yellow fur and a long, pink mane. A small imprint of three small butterflies adorned her flank, which only seemed to exaggerate how nonthreatening she really appeared. She was rather cute, as well, but it wasn't the same kind of cuteness that appealed to the griffon. Gilda narrowed her eyes suspiciously at the pony; she recognized the face, but she couldn't remember how or why.
"...H-Hello," the pink-haired pony squeaked after a short, tense silence between them.
"What do you want, squirt?" snapped Gilda in response. She definitely wasn't in the best mood for small talk at the moment.
Almost instantly, the quiet pony burst out into a fit of apologies. "Eep! I'm sorry, I'm sorry!" she wailed.
"What the heck are you going on and saying you're sorry for? Cut it out! You're really ticking me off right now!"
"I...I didn't mean to...oh dear...! We just started talking and I've already made you mad! Please forgive me, I-"
Gilda rolled her eyes, scoffing. "Just shut up and tell me what you want!" If it wasn't anything important, she planned on just scaring the pony off. It didn't look like it would be too hard to do so, either.
The trembling pony landed atop of Gilda's cloud with careful precision, shakily replying, "Um...well...I...oh...my name is Fluttershy...I'm one of R-R-RRainbow Dash's f-friends..."
Suddenly, like as if a light-bulb had just flickered on in the back of her mind, Gilda remembered everything. Earlier that same day, a short while before Pinkie Pie's disastrous (at least for her) party, she had frightened a certain pegasus pony to such an extent that the poor thing had broken out into tears and ran off. Fluttershy was the name of that weeping pony.
"H-Hey, I know you!" Gilda exclaimed as she jabbed her finger accusingly in Fluttershy's direction, "You got in my way back in Ponyville, so I scared you off good! Ha ha...man, that was hilarious. Did you follow me all the way out here?"
"Err..." Fluttershy bit her lower lip and didn't say anything else. 'I want to say it, but...I just can't! Not yet! Ohh, if only this were easier, like taming wild animals! Wait a minute...she's several animals at once...maybe I'll feel more confident if I just focus on that!'
"Ugh! Wait a minute, let me guess! I bet you think that just because Dash threw me out so easily, that you can come here and yell at me for scaring you earlier! Well, you got another thing coming, little missy! I'm really annoyed right now, so it might be best if you just fly on back to your lame-o Ponyville and your lame-o friends! Buzz off!"
Fluttershy took a deep breath to calm her nerves. 'It's not working as well as I had hoped...eep...'
Gilda unfurled her massive wings, and Fluttershy needed to step back just to full take in their feral beauty. The griffon turned her back to her unwanted companion to prepare to take off. However, her ascension was cut short by the pink-haired pony purposely stepping on top of her tail. Such an action wasn't enough to keep her from flying away, but Gilda was still caught off-guard by Fluttershy's brash and unexpected maneuver. It felt strange to Gilda to let somepony she hardly even knew touch part of her like this. She briefly pondered if she could possibly make some money by suing her for sexual harassment.
"P...please, wait! I'm so, so, so sorry for having to grab you by the tail...but...I..." Fluttershy's pleading words were hardly audible at all, even with the griffon's advanced sense of hearing. "I...wanted to...to talk..."
"Stop stuttering and say something, you little runt!" Gilda growled through a clenched beak.
Fluttershy bowed her head to hide the blush rising on her cheeks. "Umm, I know you might think that I'm mad at you for being so rude to me and my friends...but...but I'm not angry! In fact, I...I...I...meep..."
"Didn't you hear me? I said to stop stuttering and say something!"
"I want you to roar at me again! Roar at me and unleash all of that delicious pent-up rage you have built up inside you! ...Oh my, did I really just say that?"
As Fluttershy explained her reasons, she gradually became more animated. "The thing is, you see, that...I...umm...sometimes, in really intense situations, I find myself becoming more assertive. I thought that because you're very...umm, intimidating, that I could...if you don't mind...could practice with being threatened, to help me get over my shyness once and for all! It sounds kind of silly, but it seems to work from my personal experiences...!"
"...You're messing with me, aren't you?"
Fluttershy shook her head.
"Oh." Gilda was at a loss. She wanted to either yell at or viciously mock the pony for her ideas, but that would instead encourage her strange behavior. Not only that, but it would be totally uncool for her if she lost control of her anger any further. She was sick and tired of looking at ponies for a while. Thus, without even bothering to properly respond to Fluttershy's request, Gilda hastily took off in the opposite direction.
"Ah! W-Where are you going? Oh, please come back! I still need to talk to you!" Fluttershy tried to hurry after her new 'friend', but the griffon's wings were much larger and stronger than her's, and it was only due to Gilda abruptly coming to a stop in mid-air that Fluttershy actually caught up to her. Gilda didn't want to even look the pony in the eyes anymore.
"Can't you take a hint? Just leave me alone; I'm sick of you ponies! Geez, you're almost as bad as that annoying Pinkie Pie!"
Fluttershy felt a pang of despair over being compared to Pinkie Pie in obnoxiousness. "I...I would really appreciate your help...if you could be so kind..."
"Oh, please! Why should I? What do you even have to offer me in return, anyway?" Gilda snapped, swinging one of her sharpened claws near Fluttershy's muzzle. Had it been at least a couple of inches closer, it would have torn into her flesh with ease. Fluttershy tried to mask her nervousness, but failed to do so. She wasn't about to give up so easily on griffon, however.
"If you help me...umm...I could...I could try and get you back on R-Rainbow Dash's good side again...! You two seemed REALLY close and all-"
"Forget Dash!" Gilda shrugged her broad shoulders, "She'd much rather hang out with little miss random-pants instead! I'll only take her back if she comes bawling to my door and beg me to be her friend again!"
"...Still, if you really want me to help you, I believe that I have a good offer you can make me," The look on Gilda's face made it obvious that she was up to no good, but sweet, innocent Fluttershy was completely oblivious. The griffon leaned in close enough that her hot breath was brushing against Fluttershy's fur; it sent an uncomfortable chill up the mare's spine. Gilda rested one of her hands onto Fluttershy's flank and, very sensually, traced a circle around her cutie mark. Fluttershy squeaked louder than usual.
"W-W-What're you doing?" she cried.
"If you want me to help you get over your shyness, you're going to need some extra self-confidence, right?"
"Y-Yes, but this isn't what I expected!"
"Well, this is just how I roll, cutie...so you know what to do, don't you?" Gilda arched an eyebrow.
Reluctantly, Fluttershy nodded. She was willing to do just about anything to get help in breaking out of her emotional shell.
"Dash may be a loser now, and you're pretty annoying, but you've got something about you that she likes when it comes to being cute...it's your femininity, I think. Anyway, I think you should give me what I want first, and then we'll get cracking at helping you out!"
Fluttershy closed her eyes, puckered her lips, and moved in for the kiss. She hadn't considered the speed she was moving her head, and carrying her whole body with it.
However, she never came in contact with Gilda's beak. In fact, when Fluttershy opened her eyes again, she was horrified to discover that she was about to collide head-first into one of the trees below. She quickly spun herself around so that her underside was facing up at the sky, and flapped her wings at high speeds to slow her descent. Fluttershy eventually landed safely on a large branch, she tilted her head up to glare at the griffon. Gilda was laughing her head off at Fluttershy's plight; she had tricked the pony good.
"Ha ha ha ha ha! You...you actually fell for it! You didn't even try to talk me out of 'wanting' you to kiss me! What are you, some kind of fillyfooler like Dash? Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!" Gilda doubled over, clutching her stomach as if in pain.
Fluttershy felt like she wanted to cry. "A...a fillyfooler? But you said...you said you'd help if I-"
"I lied, you dimwit! You were pretty fun to mess with, though; if I'm ever in the neighborhood again, I'll make sure to hang around you again! You're a riot when you let your guard down!"
"Oh...umm, thank you very much?"
As she pensively watched Gilda fly away, eventually disappearing behind a rather large nimbus cloud, Fluttershy felt something stir deep inside of her. It was a sense of great dissatisfaction mixed with confusion and a little bit of anger on the side. She wanted to say something but words failed her, and she couldn't bring herself to yell out. Instead, she just sighed.
'What just happened...?'