No Nose Knows

by Irrespective

Chapter 27: 27. - Irritation

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“Wait. You have to do that every night?” Bean looked on in fascinated horror while his beloved downed the golden golf ball sized pill she had just created.

“Bleah,” Celestia replied while pulling a disgusted face. “Ugh. Yes, I do. The anti-snoring effects only last for twelve hours. I think I might commission a study to find a way to make it last longer.”

“How bad does it taste?”

“See for yourself,” she said while her magic conjured up another orb. “It won’t do anything for you since you don’t snore.”

Bean ate the orb quickly, but then pulled the same contorted face of disgust. It had a sort of bland taste, like a stamp, but laced with centipede droppings and ear wax.

“Wow, you must really like me,” Bean said after downing the graciously offered cup of water.

“Well, a little.” She smirked coyly. “And thankfully a glass of water clears out the taste.”

“I’m glad it does. I’d rather put up with your snoring than have you be tortured with that every night.”

“I would gladly swallow a dozen of those to be with you,” she replied with a gentle kiss. “The goods that I receive far exceed the cost.”

“Heh,” Bean replied with a lopsided and very pleased grin. “Thanks.”

“Anytime, my dear Bean.”

Bean gave her a quick kiss, then another, then one last one before moving over to the cushions and settling in for the night. Celestia trotted to the bathroom while he did so, and Bean soon heard her toothbrush hard at work at removing food particles and plaque. He then rubbed his tongue over his own teeth as he tried to remember if he had brushed his own, and an embarrassed frown then followed as he realized he might not have.

“Bean, love?” Celestia called out from where she was. “This might be a nit-picky thing, but would you mind putting the cap back on the toothpaste when you’re done with it? It irritates me a little when it’s left off.”

Oh, so he had brushed. “Yeah, of course! That’s not a problem at all.”

“Thank you,” she called back before coming in to the room and trotting over to him. “I know it’s not a big deal, but it is a pet peeve of mine. Also, you might want to consider switching to a soft-bristled brush. You still get the same effect as the medium or the hard but without the damage to your gums.”

“Sure! Next time I get one I’ll make sure it’s soft bristles. I’d hate to go long in the tooth prematurely.”

Celestia gave him a minty kiss before settling in next to him and draping her right wing over him. He snuggled into her side a bit before glancing up and giving her a worried look.

“This doesn’t hurt your wing, does it?

“No, it’s fine. If I held it taut it would hurt but I relax it when it is over you.”

“Am I pushing into your side too much? I’m not making it hard to breathe, am I? Or maybe you get too hot with me so close. I can scoot over a bit, and—”

Celestia moved in and stopped his ramblings with a long kiss. The tension in his body released with the surge of joy and love that came, and she booped him quickly when she pulled away.

“Relax my love. You’re getting worked up over nothing. If you are doing something that makes me uncomfortable I will tell you.”

“Oh. Okay.”

“Why are you so worried all of a sudden? I appreciate your concern, but this is the first time you’ve been this way about it.”

“Well, I just want to make sure you’re okay,” he replied softly. “I’m just a little concerned you’re tolerating more than you need to just for me. You’re a busy mare, and I don’t want you to lose sleep because of something I’m doing.”

“Ah.” Celestia nodded. “I appreciate that, but I really am quite comfortable with you right there. In fact, I don’t think I’ve ever slept better.”

“Really?” he asked in disbelief.

“Yes. So please don’t worry about that,” she replied, with a nip in his mane. “In fact, I wouldn’t mind if you got a bit closer.”

“Oh, really?” he giggled, and he wiggled his rear so he was pressed up closer to her. “Better?”

“Much. We should get to sleep, though. We have much to accomplish tomorrow.”

“True. But I had a quick thought.”


“Yeah. Cadence said that you might like to do some guard training with me.”

Celestia gave him a wary smile. “I may. I suppose you would want me to teach you some defensive maneuvers, much like how Sergeant Pokey was?”

“Yeah, like that, but just when you have the time,” he replied with a yawn. “It’s not an urgent thing, but I don’t want to be a sack of potatoes if something bad happens.”

“I believe I can work something out,” Celestia replied. “I may be a stern taskmaster, though. I expected nothing less than perfection from my troops when I actively led them, and I will expect the same from you.”

“I’ll take my chances. Besides, I bet you can’t be so stern when I... tickle you!”

“GAH!” she laughed and rolled away from him, but he rolled with her and kept tickling. “You little—ha! Stop! Ha, you yellow tormentor you! I shall tolerate—HA!—no assault on my—stop!—my royal self!”

“You like this and you know it!” he replied back.

* * * *

Celestia snorted herself awake the next morning, yawned, then smiled as she moved to boop her Bean awake.

She then frowned most furiously when she found no nose to boop.

“Where did he get to?” she muttered, and she checked under her left wing just to be sure. The search turned up no Bean, and she grumbled a bit.

She missed him.

Duty called to the Princess, and Celestia trotted quickly outside to bring the sun up for the day. Once done, she sprinted back inside and prepared to use a searching spell to find him.

Before she could, Bean entered the room with a tray loaded with plates of food and a small daisy in a vase. He was smiling, but it faltered when he found her up and about. “Oh, feathers,” he pouted. “I was hoping to get back here before you raised the sun.”

“What is that?” Celestia asked.

“Breakfast in bed,” he replied with his smile back in full force. “I thought it would be nice, since you’ve been making me pancakes nearly every morning.”

“Oh!” Celestia matched Bean’s smile, and she teleported herself back to the cushions. “Here, we’ll pretend like I just got up.”

“Ah, well! Good morning!” Bean laughed, and he walked over to her with the tray. “I made you breakfast. I hope you like it.”

“What do you have?” she eagerly asked.

“Just a simple meal this time. Pancakes, of course, a couple of nice blueberry bagels and cream cheese, some freshly-squeezed orange juice, and a bowl of mixed fruit. Not much, but hopefully you’ll enjoy it.”

“I’m sure I will,” she replied while hungrily surveying the feast her husband had prepared. “Ah, and I am most pleased to see you brought enough for two.”

“Yeah, I figured I should, given how you reacted when I didn’t join you, Cadence and Shining for lunch the last time. Please! Dig in, let me know what you think.”

She did so with the pancakes, but she thoughtfully chewed them as Bean popped a few grapes in his mouth.

“Let’s see,” she remarked. “Flour, eggs, milk, butter. Very balanced, yes. But no sugar?”

“It’s there. I hid it.”

“You hid it,” she flatly said, but then she took another happy bite. “You hid it, or you used the proper amount and I’m still using too much.”

“No, no!” he instantly replied with a worried look. “The amount you use is perfect! I probably didn’t put enough in mine.”

“Each way is fine,” she gently offered. “Yours have a more down-to-earth smell and flavor to them. It’s just right for what you have here.”

“Okay,” he said with some worry. “I’ll double check the next time I make them, and if I’m not putting in enough I will.”

“I’m sure you’re doing it right,” she offered.

The rest of the meal passed pleasantly, and they chatted about Celestia’s upcoming class as they did so. Bean agreed to visit the class the next week, and he suggested that he could even cook lunch for all of them as a demonstration and as part of her lesson for that week.

“Or should I bake some bread?” he asked while Celestia finished the last of the orange juice. “If you’re talking about microorganisms, yeast would be a good visual example.”

“I think that is a good idea,” she said, and Bean looked extremely pleased. “Let’s do that.”

“All right. I have a pretty good wheat recipe I can use. I’ll talk to Chef Beet about getting the ingredients I need for it and some space in the kitchens.”

“Thank you again for the meal, my dear Bean.” Celestia replied with a kiss. “But we need to get on with the day.”

“Right you are. Here, I’ll take that—” he gently took the tray of empty plates away “—and I’ll meet you downstairs.”

“Why don’t you just let one of the staff take that? Then we can spend a few more minutes together.”

“Oh. Right. That would work, I guess.”

Celestia gave him a curious, sidelong glance while he opened the main door and called out to a nearby butler. He was acting strange this morning, and she was a bit concerned about it. Yes, she had greatly enjoyed the breakfast and their conversation during the meal, but it was almost like he was…

She frowned when the thought finished congealing in her head. He was doing all of this to appease her, to placate her. He was brown-nosing, sucking up, trying to buy her good graces.

No. Stop that, Celly. He’s trying to be a gentlestallion, she immediately countered in her mind. Don’t be so harsh, and don’t be rude. He made you breakfast because he wanted to do something nice for you. There’s no ulterior motive here.

“Well, shall we?” Bean motioned to the door, and Celestia smiled and stood.

“I suppose we should. The paperwork won’t shuffle itself, after all.”

He offered a hoof to her, and she took it with a smile. They then simply strode out of the room, ready and eager to attack the day.

* * * *

Bean glanced over the paragraph in the encyclopedia again, paused as he reread the short statement, and then made some notes on a loose piece of paper. With Celestia teaching and nothing for him to do, he had decided to take some time to get a refresher history lesson in.

He had started with Star Struck. The head archivist had been extremely helpful in helping him find the appropriate documents and records, and it had been a fascinating two hours as he had played a game of hide-and-seek with the life and times of Luna’s husband.

It really was as she had said, he found. He was mentioned quite a bit for the first year to two years, and there were also quite a few notes about his ‘stubbornness’, but then something changed and it was almost like he dropped off the planet. His policies and reforms were made vicariously through Luna, and there were clear and deliberate attempts by him to keep his part unknown. There was no reason given for the sudden shift, but Bean was pretty extra sure that Luna had somehow changed his approach and viewpoint.

The last hour had been spent in reviewing the history of Equestria in general. Since he was the prince of it, Bean figured it might just be more than a good idea to know what his country had been up to over the last thousand years.

That was, of course, after he had come down from a small panic attack from the fact that the Kingdom of Equestria was, by marriage and by law, his.

Thankfully, most of what he had reviewed sounded familiar, so he was hopeful that he could be up to speed with the major points in history fairly quickly, and then from there he could work on the so-called ‘lesser’ events with Celestia as time allowed.

A soft smile broke out over his muzzle when he felt a faint pulse of air push against his ear. He didn’t look up, but he did flick his ear and then focused on the almost silent sound of his wife’s approach. Another soft pulse moved across the other ear, but still he refrained. Just a step or two more…

He quickly bent his head and neck backwards over the back of the chair, and he gave Celestia a massive grin.

“Well, hello!” She laughed. “This is an interesting look for you.”

“What? Don’t like upside down?”

She gave him a quick kiss before replying. “No, I think I like you right side up. That doesn’t look comfortable.”

“Yeah, not so much,” he offered while sitting upright again and turning to face her. “How did your class go?”

“It was… interesting,” she replied with a sigh. “It just so happens that Granite’s father is a microbiologist at the University, and so he was full of information that he just had to share. I believe I spent half of the time trying to explain what Granite was saying to everypony else.”

“I bet that was fun,” he chuckled. “And you look like you are ready for lunch.”

“I am. What should we have today?”

“Oh, I’m good with whatever you want to get.”

There it was again. Celestia was almost sure she had heard a tone of appeasement in his voice, and the way he had tensed up indicated he was hesitant to share his thoughts. He was holding back so she could get what she wanted.

She didn’t like that.

“How about a carrot dog and a basket of hayfries?” she said. Bean looked confused for a moment, and she could see him wanting to ask about her choice, but he quickly suppressed it and forced out a smile.

“That sounds really good. Would you like me to get the kitchen going on that?”

She gave him a slight glare. “I’ll come with you. We can eat together.”

“Oh, okay. Let me get all this put away and then we can go.”

She frowned deeply again while he cleaned up the books around him. She really, really hoped that she was making something out of nothing, but the diplomat in her was hardly ever wrong, especially when it came to ponies who were trying too hard to make her happy.

Maybe he’ll stop after he eats, she thought, but if he keeps doing this he’s going to get on my nerves in a hurry.

* * * *

“That was an exceptional choice for lunch, my dear,” Bean brightly offered. “I don’t even remember the last time I had a carrot dog that good, and Chef Beet had just the right amount of salt on the hayfries.”

“I’m glad you approve,” Celestia replied with a thinly veiled grumble.

“Wysteria, don’t we have a meeting with the ambassador from Prance?”

“Yes, she should be arriving here in just a few minutes,” Wysteria replied.

“Well, best not to keep her waiting!” he replied with a healthy dose of enthusiasm.
“Shall we?”

“What was in that carrot dog?” Wysteria whispered to her employer as Bean trotted briskly away.

“I don’t know, but he’d better stop or he’s going to get on my nerves,” Celestia replied with a huff.

They both caught up to Bean in the throne room after taking a moment to review some details for a later meeting with the Tradespony Guild, and he was pacing in front of the doors and looking somewhat annoyed. He gave a quick smile to both of them, but then quickly focused his attention back on the doors.

“She’s late,” Bean said.

“She is always late,” Wysteria replied. “The Prench never start anything on time.”

“Well they should,” he muttered. “Celly has other things to get done today, we can’t just lollygag around here!”

“Bean, relax,” Celestia said in a stern tone. “We accounted for for the late start when we scheduled this. Everything will be fine.”

Bean stopped pacing immediately when he heard Celestia’s tone and his ears folded back. “Oh. I’m just worried you won’t get all of your work done.”

“Are you really?” she asked him with a deadpan expression.


A guard by the main doors interrupted the conversation with a loud crack as his spear struck the tile beneath him. “Announcing Ambassador Ligne Dure, from the Republic of Prance!”

“Ambassador!” Bean didn’t even give her a chance to clear the threshold before he was in her face and shaking her hoof. “Welcome! The Princess and I are overjoyed to have you here.”

“I suppose the pleasure is mine?” Ambassador Dure asked with a healthy serving of bewilderment. “You must be the new Prince, oui?

“Yes, ma’am. Baked Bean, and it’s my pleasure to make your acquaintance. Please! Come! We have a lot to discuss, I’m sure.”

“Forgive me, but I was under the impression that this was a casual meeting. I was unaware that there was an agenda.”

“There isn’t, Ambassador.” Celestia cut in, with a stern glare for her husband that was impossible to miss. “Prince Bean is letting his enthusiasm get carried away. Please, follow me. We have everything prepared right over here.”

Bean shrunk back and gave an embarrassed smile. That had not gone as well as he’d hoped.

But there was still a chance for him to get back on the right path. A small table had been set up in the throne room, with several soft cushions placed around the perimeter for their enjoyment. Three glasses sat on the table, and Bean noted with curiosity that a bowl of lemons, two large pitchers of water, and a bowl of sugar were sitting on top.

Then he felt like a right proper twit. Lemonade! How blind could he be? Obviously Celestia wanted him to make lemonade for everypony. He saw there was a knife, a reamer, and a small bucket for the rinds once he took a better look, and his spirits soared while everypony settled in on the cushions. Beverages weren’t a strong point for him, but lemonade was easy.

Celestia began chatting with Ambassador Dure about her family while Bean went to work. He focused on his methods and movements, took extra care to keep the balance of lemon, water, and sugar appropriate and proportional, ensured that no seeds or rinds snuck into the finished product in the glass, and then felt a smug smile pull his lips upward as he finished stirring his concoction.

It would be the best glass of lemonade ever.

“Here you go, Ambassador.” Bean offered the glass with all the pleasant charm he had. “I hope you like this.”

“Oh!” The Ambassador was… confused? “Thank you, Your Highness.”

Bean felt his own confusion growing. Ambassador Dure was giving Celestia a questioning look that was laced with irritation, Celestia was flat out glaring at him, and Wysteria was shaking her head with exasperation off in the distance. What had he done this time?

“My prince, this is citron pressé.” Celestia stated, her tone forceful and upset. “A pleasant summertime beverage that is enjoyed all across Prance. A pony makes the drink themselves by adding the sugar, water, and lemon juice as they see fit. It is extremely rude to the Prench to have somepony prepare it for them, especially if that pony is somepony they have just met.”

Now Bean felt like a right proper twit.

* * * *

“Look, I’m really sorry about that.” Bean offered as Celestia marched with him down the hallway. “I thought it was—”

“Look, I’m really not interested in what you thought.” Celestia cut him off. “That was highly embarrassing, Bean, and we’re lucky we have good relations with the Prench. With the wrong diplomat that could have been a major international incident.”

“I think you’re overstating things a bit,” Bean replied with his own irritation growing. “I messed up, sure; but it was a glass of lemonade. I’m pretty extra sure no one has gone to war over lemonade. Besides, the rest of the meeting went well.”

“No, it didn’t,” Celestia snapped. “Ambassador Dure was very hostile, and I didn’t get to bring up the Rosebud proposal. I’ll have to schedule another meeting for that now. And yes, a glass of lemonade could start a war, Bean. If that had been a Yak in there, I’d be begging for forgiveness, and I mean that literally. Do you know how embarrassing it is to Equestria when their Princess has to grovel? How that damages our reputation?”

“Well I’m sorry,” Bean huffed out angrily. “I’m sorry my help is taken in all the wrong ways and that I’m so horribly offensive to the country.”

“Now you’re putting words in my mouth. I never said you were an embarrassment. I said—”

“You did too!” Bean cut her off, and he snorted.

“Don’t interrupt me!” Celestia shot back. “I’m trying to explain to you what happened.”

“No, you’re telling me you don’t appreciate my efforts to help.”

“I hate that you’re doing what you’re doing so you can pander to me!” she argued back. “Ever since I brought up Daybreaker, you’ve been tiptoeing around me like I’m going to explode at the slightest provocation. I don’t need yet another yespony around, saying ‘of course, what a wonderful idea!’ I don’t need or want anypony treating me like a porcelain figurine that will break into a million pieces at the slightest touch of trouble! I can handle things on my own, I did so for a thousand years!”

Bean snorted out a derisive laugh at the end of her speech. “Of course, Your Highness. Forgive me for trying to be kind. I didn’t realize I had to be in lock-step with your ideals, and it’s especially hard for me to do so when I don’t know what your intents are. How could a poor, uneducated commoner like me have any hope of meeting your impossible standards?”

There was a tense pause as the two stared each other down in fury. When Celestia did break the silence, it was with a dangerously quiet tone.

“I’m not going to answer that. We both need to walk away before this gets out of hoof.”


They both offered a final hmph to each other before turning and walking away from each other in the hallway.

* * * *

Separating had prevented Baked Bean and Celestia from boiling over in the hallway after the botched meeting. After an hour or so apart, both were ready to talk to each other again.

The only problem was that the separation had also given them both time to create an extensive defensive trench system to hunker down in, and neither of them was willing to come out into nopony’s land to negotiate a truce.

So the reunion was tense, to put it mildly. Both remained convinced that they had done no wrong and that the other needed to apologize first, so their conversations through dinner and into the evening were short, one to two sentence affairs with copious amounts of silence in between.

But as sunset approached, Bean decided to step up and to apologize. He didn’t think he needed to, nor had his mind changed; all he had done that day was be his usual helpful self and she had no reason to be irritated. But he didn’t want this to drag on all night, so when Celestia moved out on the balcony to lower the sun he quickly followed her and rubbed against her side.

“Hey. I’m sorry about today. Things got a little out of hoof.”

“Yes they did,” she replied. Her horn then flared, and Bean waited as the sun bowed in reverence before the princess by sliding behind the hills. “But thankfully this can all be remedied.”

“It can?”

“Of course.”

And then, for the next forty-five minutes, Celestia delivered a lecture so thorough and watertight that Bean had no choice to submit to her superior points. It was a shame that all of the court stenographers were unavailable, for if one had been present and had recorded Celestia’s words, wives across Equestria would have been able to browbeat even the most stubborn of partner into submission. She went over his ‘helpfulness’ and how that had simply been an excuse he had come up with to cover for his efforts to appease her, how he had progressively irked her as the day had gone on, and how his desires to be endlessly appeasing would be a liability if he persisted. She grilled him over hot charcoal briquettes on how all of this had been wrong and how she really didn’t need any more ponies fawning over her. She informed him,in grand phrases, that she wanted him to be himself, to share his honest opinions and thoughts without fearing her anger, because she really didn’t get angry very often. She knew he had begun doing all of this in hopes of avoiding bringing Daybreaker to life, but that if he persisted in his ways he might very well bring it out of her anyway, so if he was serious about being helpful he needed to cease and desist immediately.

Once she had finally finished driving her points home with a sledgehammer she smiled and thanked him for being humble enough to admit he was wrong, and she gave him a quick kiss to conclude and then happily trotted back into their bedroom. Bean simply sat for a few minutes after this, trying to process what had just been shoved down his throat and how everything had spiraled out of control on him.

I didn’t do anything wrong. I was just being being kind. Why is she so upset about all this?

“Bean, love? Come in please. It’s going to get cold soon.”

“Yes dear.”

He forgot about his irritation when he heard Celestia cough a few times. He hurried back inside and found her drinking a tall glass of water, and he gave her neck a quick nuzzle as she drank.

“Are you all right?” he asked with genuine concern.

“Yes, I believe so. I just have a dry throat from talking so much.”

He remained unconvinced when she coughed again. “Are you sure?”

“I’m fine, really, but I am feeling a bit tired. Let’s head to bed, shall we?”

Bean nodded, and he snuggled in a bit closer when they settled down. He really hoped she wasn’t just telling him she was okay to placate him. The cough didn’t sound like a dry throat cough to him, and he was worried that she was coming down with something instead. If she was, he wasn’t sure what he would do.

How do you treat a sick Alicorn, after all?

Next Chapter: 28. - Sick Day Estimated time remaining: 1 Hour, 36 Minutes
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