Chrysalis Still Works at Quills and Sofas

by Majin Syeekoh

Chapter 1: You don’t leave an honest paycheck behind.

Luster Dawn strolled into Quills and Sofas, looking behind her at the bell chime.

Oh right. She chuckled nervously. They have to have some way to notify when customers are coming in.

Luster strolled around, pressing her hoof against a chaise lounge. Supple. I like it.

Her eye caught the quills stocked under the counter. Luster dashed towards the counter and peered at all of the stock they had on display. Oh gosh, they have all the latest models!

She picked each one up in her magic and twirled them, examining the weighting and balance of each one in turn. Hmmm, this one’s too top-heavy. I wonder how this next one will feel on paper. I wonder if they have—

“We have paper and inkwells on standby if you’d like to test out the product.”

Luster Dawn glanced up at the somewhat familiar greenish-blackish blob, then back at the quills in her glow. “If it wouldn’t be too much trouble.” She looked up again at the… the changeling who reached under… her end of the counter and pulled out a ream of paper and an inkwell. She leered at the… tall… feminine, changeling as she placed the quill she was currently grasping down next to the ream that… “Chryssi”, had just presented to her. Luster tapped her chin.

“You don’t look like any changeling I’ve seen before.”

A sickly green shine emanated from her… gnarled? horn as a similar sheen encased a well-constructed small box behind the counter, said box placed on said counter.

“That specific quill has several optional nibs you can attach for different visual effects in your hornwriting.” Chryssi presented a smile. “It’ll make you stand out from the crowd.”

Luster Dawn wasn’t exactly listening to the salesling right now as she stroked her fiery mane. “You’re too tall to be Ocellus.” She looked to the side. “At least in her natural form, but I don’t remember Twilight mentioning her working as a salesling.” Luster looked at the changeling, the practiced smile losing its practice — and its smile — before she looked down. “Pharynx? No. He’s too militant. Thorax? Yeah, I could see him working at this kind of establishment.” She looked up and smiled. “Are you King Thorax?”

Chryssi’s eyes popped open as she snarled and slammed on the counter. “You confuse me for that traitorous false regent again and I will make sure you end up worse than Fizzlepop Berrytwist!

Luster watched as Chryssi’s form expanded and contracted with her breath, the associate seemingly lost in a time long past. The gears ticked in her head as Chryssi straightened out her vest and hair, as well as fix the crown on her head.

The crown.

The crown.



Luster put a hoof to her mouth. “Oh my stars you’re Queen Chrysalis aren’t you.”

“In the flesh,” Chrysalis growled before she tapped the box. “Now, if you’ll allow me to continue attempting the upsale, we can go on with our—”

“OH NO.” Luster’s body twitched. She paced around. “Oh no oh no oh no oh no. My first day in Ponyville and one of Equestria’s greatest foes is here.” Luster pressed her eyes shut. “Is this a test? This must be a test.” She looked at Chrysalis, currently lightly tapping on the counter. “Is this a test?”

Chrysalis sighed. “The only thing you’re testing is my patience. Now are you buying or not?” She tapped her forehead. “Not that that’s an issue. Please, take your time.”

“Should I leave? Twilight told me about stranger danger, but she’s not exactly a stranger. She is dangerous, though. Very.” Luster rubbed her muzzle. “But if I leave she might wreak havoc upon all of Equestria.” She stomped the hoof on the floor, the creak doing nothing to dissuade her thought process. Much to Chrysalis’s dismay.

“Let’s look at this logically.” Chryssi — much easier to think of her as Chryssi — Chryssi leaned her head against her hoof. “If I were to wreak havoc on Equestria, what possible scenario would involve me working at Quills and Sofas?”

Luster opened her mouth up to answer before Chrysalis cut her off. “I want you to think very hard about this.”

Luster thought.

Very hard.

About this.

She thought about this so hard she sat down on the supple chaise lounge; long enough for several creatures to enter the establishment, look around, make purchases, and even joke around with one of the greatest evils in Equestria.

Finally done with thinking, Luster took a breath, got off of the chaise, and approached the counter. “Okay, I’ve got it, but it’s a long shot.”

Chrysalis narrowed her eyes. “Oh, I’d love to hear this.”

“You’re using meme warfare.”

“Meme war—” Chrysalis lurched over the counter, causing Luster to reel, then slowly pulled back and chuckled. “Okay, now I really want to hear this.”

“What you’re doing is,” Luster started as she pointed at Chrysalis, “is lying low, working this dead-end job, being jocular with creatures. But for what?” Luster tapped the side of her head. “You’re trying to get their guard down for when you finally strike. See, what you’ll do after a few years of building and maintaining friendships, learning the details and ins-and-outs of everyone’s likes, and then!” Luster slammed her upper body on the counter, hoping to cause Chrysalis to flinch.

Chrysalis didn’t flinch. Well, she can’t stop now. Luster was on a roll.

“Then you’ll lead a counter-revolution against Princess Twilight to seize control of Equestria right from under her muzzle.”

Now Luster was the one heavily breathing. In, and out. Just, breathing.

Chrysalis slowly sat down on the chair behind the counter and just glared at Luster. A smirk slowly cracked on her face.

“You know,” Chrysalis said as she wagged her hoof at the absolutely certain young unicorn. “There’s a filly I’m sure you would have gotten along with, but unfortunately she’s a pigeon toilet right now.”

Luster gulped. “Am I — am I right?”

Chrysalis laughed. “You’ve got a vivid imagination.” She leaned over the counter and Luster snapped her whole body back about five feet. “I’m here on work release because Davenport can’t run the store without me. I get turned back to stone every night after my shift.”

“So, uh.” Luster scratched the back of her neck. “You’re here to… sell quills and sofas?”

Chrysalis nodded.

“Oh. Okay.” Luster took a deep breath, then grasped the quill she was looking at earlier. “I’ll take this, then.” She blushed. “And the nib set, for wasting your time and patience.”

“A wise choice,” Chrysalis said as she placed Luster’s purchase in a brown paper bag and hovered it over to her as Luster hovered over the bits onto the counter.

“It was nice to meet you, Chrysalis.” Luster grasped her bag and shuffled to the door as Chrysalis came out to the sales floor with a broom to sweep out the day’s detritus. She paused as the door, then looked over her shoulder. “Hey, Chryssi?”

“Yes?” she replied as the broom scratched against the floor.

“I’m new here, and I don’t know that many creatures yet, so I was wondering if we could be friends—”

“I don’t do pastel.”

“Okay gotta go bye.”

The bell chimed behind her as the autumn breeze greeted her and she took a crisp breath.

Well, I can say hi to her tomorrow.

She trotted down the street.

Princess Twilight said that friendship takes work.

Author's Notes:

Just because one story ends doesn’t mean others don’t continue.

Keep doing what you love.

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