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SteelEagle

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  1. Rarity saying the words honkey tonk almost made Applejack spit up her drink. It was sometimes difficult to remember that the fashionista was a Ponyville native and not from a big hoity toity city. Still, it didn't sound right coming from her. Not that Applejack was one to say no to a good honkey tonk when it was all said and done! "Well, what are we waiting for?" Applejack said with a broad smile. "Y'all haven't had a good ol' fashioned Ponyville honkey tonk in a while, Ah reckon," she said, ambling ahead of them and getting lost in her thoughts while they spoke amongst one another. She was excited to get married. Duh, right? Who wouldn't be? So much had happened in her young life- well, not quite as young as it used to be, in any case- and so much of it had happened in a whirlwind that she had never really settled down on settling down. But when the mare was right the mare was right and this mare was right about the right mare for her. And having her best friends show her a good time right before she started a new, married life was really special. She wasn't somepony who wanted or needed a big party or something too risque, but hanging out with her friends at such an important time in her life was an exciting prospect nonetheless. Down the road was where the party was being held, and what a party it was. Applejack was a growing town- a city, really- but that didn't mean it had lost its love of country flair and warmth and a good ol' fashioned barnyard shindig was in full swing, with many townsfolk pounding the dirt of the town square alongside paid dancers, a good country band, and some refreshments. Well, she certainly had the energy after that drink earlier to cut a rug- or in this case, the earth beneath her hooves- and nothing was gonna stop her. She turned to her friends. "This looks like a real hootenany! Y'all went ta this much work, all for me?" She asked, the tiniest bit of waterworks starting up before an unreasonably attractive shark started to circle its country prey. She asked if this was the famous Applejack. The farmer puffed out her chest- she didn't seek the attention but she wouldn't deny it either. "Sure am!" She said, proud as heck!
  2. Apple Bloom was always happy to have hep, and double that if it were a Princess. And tripe that if it were Princess Luna, honorary Apple of Sweet Apple Acres. Speaking of, Luna hadn't forgotten the tree she had planted. It was just now starting to produce some good apples, though not for today's event. Apple Bloom smiled as she spoke, not forgetting two bits for a mug as she did so. "Yer apple tree is super pretty ta be sure, but the apples it makes aren't right for ciders. Good for snackin' or pies, though," she said, smacking her lips as she imagined sinking her teeth into a nice Princess Apple Pie right about now. Assuming Applejack just didn't save it for sale, of course. "How goes dreamwalkin'? Any kooky dreams lately?" She asked as she continued to work. She was always mighty interested in what was going on in that realm of nightmares and fantasy, especially anything that could have piqued the interest of the pony of the night herself. Of course, nothing could distract from work as well. Two bits, mug. Two bits, mug. Two bits, mug. “Yep! That sure is Princess Luna!” Two bits, mug. “No sir, you ain't dreaming. Not that I'd blame you- that cider is a dream!” Two bits, mug. Two bits, mug. “No, this is for cider, not photography.” Two bits, mug. Two bits, mug. Two bits, mug. “Yes ma'am, you can get yer cider. Y'all don't need ta bow!” Two bits, mug. Speaking of work, Gallus was chagrined at the thought of it. He wasn't opposed to hard work if he needed or felt it deserved or needed but he made a habit of not appearing to be too intrusively active when it came to work and this reputation was one he was planning to rigidly reinforce like a shack in a storm no matter the cost. Well, maybe not around Silverstream. He didn't want to let her down and he knew that without some cider in their talons that this whole endeavor would leave a bitter taste in their mouths. And he wasn't talking about his lack of brushing. "Uggh, I guess," he said with a barely hidden frustration, eyes a-rolling as he responded to the Chancellor. He landed next to him. "I mean, I already have nothing else to do now, so I guess it can't hurt. Where do you want me?" He asked, loosening up his muscles for whatever labor of love- no, not love. Labor of thirst- that the royal had in mind for the two. The orders were made clear. Help repair the press. Awesome. He had never done anything like it before and he was thirsty and annoyed and Silverstream was here. What was a kitten to do in these trying times? Like most of his life, fake it until he made it. He approached the press, nodding towards it as he waited for his partner in cider crime to appear next to him. "Two pairs of talons are better than one I guess. Anything in any of the books you read about repairing cider presses? If only they needed our help with plumbing, right?" He said with a laugh as bent down to inspect the press, trying to piece together what had been done before and what else needed doing as the hippogriff settled in with him. If they were gonna work, might as well get to it!
  3. Howdy! I am staff here at the forums. If you have any questions feel fre to contact me, and enjoy your stay at Canterlot!
  4. For some reason this thread didn't mark for me. My apologies sugarcube! 1- You can totally be from Prance. As for additional information, it is open- beyond what we have, the sky is the limit on what you want bring in in terms of France=Prance. 2- We have a number of artists who do good work. An idea might be Rainbow Foxxy- she does amazing work! 3- It is approved for FFA in that circumstance. Also, you do not need to post it again in the FFA character sheets.
  5. Mooonlight looked around as if she were taking a tour of some sort of carnival ride or other playful area, full of toys and gifts and things for her to touch and enjoy. She had never been up to his room before. Heck, she had never been to this wing of the dorms before. It was almost as if she was trespassing somewhere special, even though she had been invited. This veneer of naughtiness only emboldened her to impishly leaf through visually all the nooks and crannies that made up his dorm room. She had been to a few dorms of her fiends and each time it was fun to poke around and see what they kept hidden from anypony but their dorm-mate and themselves. And in this case he had no dorm-mate, so it was extra awesome to see what was hiding in the darkened corners of his room. "I'm jazzed to be here. I did run into, like, your neighbor. She seems nice," she said sarcastically before she allowed him to start his tour. After all, half the fun of having somepony over was being super embarrassed about showing off your room. There was a bed that was not in use and she wasn't going to let it go to misuse or disuse. She also had a deep storage closet but for the most part it was taken up by her clothes. Arranged by outfits and seasons as it should be. A quick poke through his closet? He needed an interior organizer, stat. She used her desk mostly for work, her diary, drawing designs and other tomfoolery. And that turntable? Well she didn't have one of those. Let alone an acoustic guitar. She didn't know he plucked some strings- she wan't about to say play guitar, because, ya know, not many ponies could claim to play it, not just make noise. "Oooh, a guitar," she said as she grabbed it in her magic, giggling. "Fancy yourself a famous guitarist sweetie?" She said with a giggle, before leaving it back where she found it. "Nice room. Like, not too extravagant and I mean your Princess Luna poster is just blegh," she said with a wink. She walked over to the second chair and sat on it, hooves up on the desk- not his, but the desk opposite. What, was she going to be rude? "So, how did gym go? Fly around a few dozen times?" She said as she tapped her bandaged hoof on the desk.
  6. Moonlight giggled as her cousin remarked that Apple Bloom would get over it. She'd have to, right? Prince Lian was a morsel and a half but he lived so far away and with so many layers of society between them that it was a dead-end. Apple Bloom should consider her stars crossed and lucky clovers rained on and cash out her chips now. Not many ponies got a little kiss from a hunk like that. "Hopefully. I mean, it'd be, like, a shame if she just laid there for the rest of her life," she said as she looked around. Apple Bloom was slowly pulling herself up, which made Moonlight smile. "At least she's still conscious." Soon enough the topic turned from Apple Bloom's leg-quaking crush on a Princeling to Moonlight's lip-smacking relationship with a fellow student. She smiled broadly, her tail flicking around in smooth waves. He was a charmer who didn't have to try and a piece of loving who didn't need any conditioning. Of course, that didn't mean she didn't try to get some TLC out of him. What was a coltfriend for if not backrubs and hoofrubs? "Oh cousin, don't you worry. I've got, like, a million things I can have him do. I'm nothing if not, like, playfully high maintenance, right?" The not so playfully high maintenance filly said as she winked. "Besides, I make sure he swoons over me. The right scents and moves, you know it!" She flipped her mane out before returning to the business of the day. She could stand her, gabbing with her cousin all day about her cute coltfriend, but she was here on business. Apple business. And if there was one business that she knew her cousin would respect, it was apple business! "Anywho, well, I need your help," she said as she leaned in, "and only you can help. I need your, like, super apple brain to help me out. I need a bushel of apples that will totally work as great snack foods and can handle, like, being totally left out on a desk for a while. Also, something other than red skin. So, whatcha got goin' for me, eh?"
  7. Moonlight was not the style of pony who needed an object lesson when it came to loyalty. She'd stuck by friends no matter how deep the cave or how treacherous the angle they pitched. And, like most trust exercises, she had aced this one. Yes she had cheated a little but that wasn't because she didn't trust her blushing friend. It was because he was half-blind. That wasn't an insult, that was just a fact! She'd trust Remington with just about anything. Except leading her while blind, seeing as it lead them to a buckball court! But beyond that, no. She knew for a fact that she could really trust him. That had been a bonus to any Remington interaction from the time of their foalhood and it would remain so for however long they knew one another. Then it came time for her to give her lesson statement after Remington gave his, which was more eloquent than what she had in mind. "Sometimes it can be totally hard to trust somecreature if, like, what they're telling you doesn't always work out. You know, like, if you lead them into a barricade and get your classes broke, or if you're on a buckball court. But, like, loyalty doesn't mean you're perfect, it just means that you're doing your best for your friends. And trust means believing, like, that those around you are doing their best for you, even if you can't always see it," she said positively. It seemed like a good lesson to learn when you were this young, and a perfect way for Rainbow Dash to teach it to boot!
  8. Gallus sighed in relief, at least momentarily. Silverstream was the lesser of many evils when it came to who he feared would be at the door. He had wanted to show off a little more than he could now for her but at the very least he thought that was doing a reasonably good job watching Zap so it wouldn't be an embarrassment. She, however, looked like she had been through an ordeal of some kind. She was less than her normal levels of presentability. A stray leaf in her mane, scuff marks, some mud here and there. What in the wide world of Equestria had she done to deliver a pie that quickly? He wasn't aware that pie deliveries were near the top of the most dangerous jobs in the world or anything. "Well, that's good to hear. Fight a manticore or something along the way?" He asked, using a talon to pick away one of the leaves from her mane and tossing it out of the door with a laugh. "Thinking you need to wear armor or something next time?" He asked sarcastically, though he was honestly pretty curious as to what exactly had taken place that necessitated she end up this way. Of course, he wasn't going to get the answer to that burning question. She pushed past him quickly to find Zap Apple who didn't make it hard in the slightest. It took just a single scan of the home's sound to pinpoint that the loudest noise ever made was emanating from wherever he was at, at any given moment in time. She flew over to Zap Apple and engaged him in some fine mothering. At the very least he stopped wailing inconsolably over some blood in a movie. Geez kid, grow some feathers already. He knew that it was probably wrong of him to show the movie in the first place but really, this all seemed like a wild overreaction. He wasn't sure why he was coddled so much but it was freakin' Daring Do. Wasn't she an Equestrian icon or something? He caught her mouthing, asking what his name was. Rather than make it obvious he was answering a question, the oven dinged- providing him an easy way of doing it. "That's the food. Zap Apple buddy, wanna eat?"
  9. Apple Bloom gave off a quick salute to Fluttershy. "Aye aye, Fluttershy!" Apple Bloom said energetically. She was happy to learn from Fluttershy and even happier to help her out on sanctuary. She wasn't a mare who probably needed help but it felt good for the both of them to wallow in this delightful fiction. She made her way over to the chickens. Unlike back on the farm where the chickens were all cooped up and so feeding them was an easy enough task, the chickens at the sanctuary were free range. They waddled their way up and down and to and fro with nary a fence to keep them from trouble. Well, it wasn't always that way. But now that the sanctuary was around they had free range. Yet you couldn't really take the hen out of the henhouse, and so Elizabeak and another number of the chickens had a habit of staying in their coop, which meant it was an easy enough job to feed, them. Apple Bloom trotted into the enclosure and shut the gate, carrying the feed on her back. As she approached, she took some feed out and started scattering it around the entrance. "Heeeere chick chick chick chick chick! Heeeeere chick chick chick chick!" She said after tossing a few more hoof-fulls around. Elizabeak and her friends started moving on out and, seeing the feed on the ground, started going at it. Before long there was a whole gaggle of 'em going to town on the feed! Apple Bloom slowly pet the crux of Elizabeak's neck as she ate. The chicken liked it, you could tell because of the way her breathing was relaxed and her feathers went all soft. "Why, yer a beautiful little chickadoo today, Elizabeak!"
  10. If there was one benefit to being Princess that Twilight was scarcely happier about, it was that she was able to create the sort of magical informational exchange that would have been little more than fantasy a decade previous. There had always been some work to be found in the Canterlot Archives ad library regarding magic from outside of Equestria but they were rarely of note. Often times they were interesting but were rather basic, or were the equivalent of fringe works tat authorities abroad didn't really care whether or not Equestrian researchers spent their time on. She wasn't much of a fan of the concept that there was knowledge that Equestria, and its Princess, couldn't get a handle on. So she had opened the Equestrian Knowledge Exchange, sharing magical theories and knowledge among Equestria and her allies. The return had been wonderful. Unyasan alchemic works that were so far more intricate and powerful than what had existed in Equestrian research circles before. Neighponese Magitech was one of the most interesting topics of study in the world and finally you could learn something without having to travel there to learn about it. Long Guo mysticism, the mysteries of Polyneighsia, a thousand other topics poorly covered over time but now opened up for wider study in Equeestria. It was a great time to be a scholar and a greater time to be a Scholar-Princess, since she often got sent personal copies of some of the rarest or more important works on the subjects from friends she had made among the leaders of many nations. The only flaw is that she could certainly use a little more time than she was normally afforded. Luckily, there were fewer desires on her time at the witching hour so she found herself on many a night at the library for the School for Gifted Unicorns. She could rely on some peace and quiet-You're not going anywhere until you tell me who you are - that would allow her the time she needed to- ...literally live in a waist land of Ice and Snow- fully delight in the great works of magical art- As it stands, I stand at the ready to defend Equestria from all threats that threatens her -. She sighed. The library was supposed to be closed. Her horn lit up and an invisible wave of aetheric detection. It came back within a moment or two- she could easily see that her friend Ice Storm was one of them likely as a guard. And she had...blocked off the entrance? No sign of combat magic in use and not fighting the other aetheric signature. That was good. She'd hate to ruin the reading materials of the students of this school. Still, something was weird. Ice Storm wouldn't just ice up a entryway for no reason and the other aetheric signature was definitely powerful and unknown to her. She closed the book she was reading and her horn lit again. This time, she rewrote the rules of reality, deciding that it was better if Ice Storm and this other fellow were close to her rather than so very far away. They would find themselves seamlessly teleported to a deep, cordoned off area of the library. The Princess would be seated at a long table with a pile of books and some tea, a single gem in the skylight amplifying the moonlight to allow for reading. "It may not be library hours but I think it would be wise to make considerably less noise than you are now. Pleasure seeing you Ice- and who might you be?" She asked, her voice firmly entrenched in curiosity rather than any real anger.
  11. Apple Bloom was quaking with excitement internally, trying her darnedest to make sure it didn't show but failing all the same to the extent that one would swear she had the slightest of shivers due to a cold wind blowing through. It wasn't that- and when he washed her face off, she let out a low tittering giggle that she didn't have much control over. That was just the start. He then reached over and cupped her chin oh so gently and steered her into the promised land, laying down a warm, brief kiss that may as well have lasted a thousand moons for the filly. She imagined a lifetime of bliss in those moments- courtship, dating, marriage, foals, becoming Queen, the whole nine hooves and then some- before he pulled away, asking if it was good for her. She opened up her mouth to talk but all of her blood had rushed to her face to form the harshest and reddest blush in the history of the artform. She swooned, spoke to herself unintelligibly, and fell backwards behind the stand, plopping once more into the mud. A successful day indeed. Applejack once more stepped over her sister's twitching form and collected the bits, shuffling them into her growing war chest of business success. "Thank ya kindly, Prince. Ah hope yer bushel treats ya right," she said with a smile, pleased at how the day had gone. Princes and Princesses, the paupers and the downtrodden and everycreature in between. It had been a real treat, a real blast, and it wasn't ending just yet. "Ah hope you have a good'n, Prince Lee-Ann!" She said as she waved him off. It had been pretty exciting and doubly so for APple Bloom, who was still twitching in the mud below her. Applejack shook her head. "Get back in tha house and clean yerself up. Yer done for tha day, sugarcube," she said barely above a whisper, trying to hide a giggle. Yep, she was a mess. Funny to see, annoying to deal with. She cleaned off the top and rolled her shoulders. "Next!" Moonlight trotted confidently up to the stand, laughing as she did so. "Well, that was totally expected. Is Apple Bloom even breathing down there? Abby, deep breaths. No prince likes it when you, like, pass out on top of them," she said as she arrived, two hooves in the stand. "Hey there cuz. How's your big business day? Kissing, like, everypony and everycreature in the region, eh? Just for business or is this a plan of yours?" She winked, "secret's totally safe with me, filly." *Moonlight Glitter* Kissed 1-10 11-20 21-30 31-40 41-50 51-60 61-70 71-80 81-90 91-100
  12. Rara sat back, brushing her mane back with a hoof while she listened to the story behind Apple Chord's 'retirement'. It was as expected, keeping in line with everything that Rara had been told before. It was so frustrating. Applejack had a rare voice talent and a simplicity of vision that meant she could produce such impactful and emotionally taut songs. That combination was something a music producer would kill for! But then again, that same vision is what made her reasoning for calling it quits all the more solid. A mare who sung from the heart and valued those around her couldn't really be counted on doing something that would damage the emotional bonds that made her so special in the first place. A tragedy for the music scene to be sure, if a blessing for Ponyville, the Apple clan, and Equestria as a whole by the end. "Makes sense. How do you think your more, how to say it, life experiences would influence your music if you were still active now?" Azure was caught off guard by Applejack-slash-Apple Chord asking her a question. "Me?" She asked out of shock, before shaking her head and regaining her composure. She wanted to lay it out on the line but that seemed petty, and driven by her still being tired. She'd stick to the truth, but a diplomatic version of it at that. "Oh, I was hired to be a background dancer. I am trained for it and I love doing it! Svengallop hired me to be part of the production. We don't do a lot of heavy production, but here I am, still employed!" She said with a respectful nod towards her employer. It was way more boring than what she had been hired to do but work was work. She needed to get off this subject. "Are you ready for your vocal exercises yet, ma'am?"
  13. Apple Bloom had always wanted to branch out and learn more activities that could help her on the farm. After all, she may run a pretty dang successful business helping ponies discover the meaning of their cutie marks, but she was a filly of the fields first and foremost! She knew plenty about what it took to run the farm but there was a whole lot more to it when it came to Sweet Apple Acres, seeing as it was on the edge of the Everfree forest. Many wild animals came through the Orchard and that didn't even account for how to deal with some of the more magical beasties that called the edges of the Everfree home. She always considered herself pretty well versed in dealings with such critters but after a nasty incident with a Basilisk in the Whitetail she figured she needed to learn from somepony who knew a whole heck of a lot more than her. Apple Bloom had decided to look to Ponyville's premier animal pony, Fluttershy. She knew more about how to deal with animals than anypony else in Equestria, really. And while Apple Bloom knew her big sister had a wealth of knowledge herself, she reckoned that Applejack didn't have nearly as much as Fluttershy did when it came to tactics to calm a situation down. Caring for animals, dealing with animals, learning about them- Fluttershy was a resource that Apple Bloom had to tap into. So she had been coming around to Fluttershy's sanctuary to help Fluttershy out whenever and wherever she could, absorbing what she could from the pegasus. It had been fun, frustrating, smelly, dirty, and totally worth it. So as she trotted into the sanctuary, full saddlebag in town, Apple Bloom was all smiles. Another beautiful day in Ponyville? You bet your flank it was! Irrepressible happiness was the tone of such a beautific day and how better to spend a day without farm work for her than helping Fluttershy out some? If there was, Apple Bloom wasn't aware of it. She trotted with a certain bounce in her step as she entered the sanctuary from the gate. "Howdy Fluttershy! Ah'm ready!" She said joyfully as she trotted by Tempest. Ponies were a forgiving sort and Applejack had told Apple Bloom all about what had happened. She wasn't sure that she would call Tempest a friend, but no reason not to be friendly. She nodded her way. "Well, fancy seein' you there! Whatcha got goin' on?"
  14. It wasn't a handsome pegasus colt from Manehattan who opened the door but rather a moody looking unicorn with the attitude to match. Who was she? Why was she in Remington's room? She quickly ran down the qualities of friendship that she had in opposition to this filly. Bubbly personality? Beautiful body? Happy to see you interactions? Her mane was prettier too. It would be really awful if they got drawn into a comparison because it was really one-sided and why was she even here in the first place? Remington roomed alone, right? Moonlight felt herself straightening up subconsciously and was ready to start asking questions when the filly mentioned it was the wrong room. Moonlight felt immediately bad. "Oh! I'm so, so, soooo sorry-" she began before the door closed slowly, Moonlight moving her face to look through the increasing slits of darkness until the door was firmly shut. Moonlight sighed in embarrassment. "Well, luckily nopony saw that. Who was that though?" She asked aloud as she trotted to the next door. She shrugged. She'd meet that filly again, she knew that. Maybe it would be a cutie map mission: Make the goth filly (or whatever) see the light of friendship. By what though? Maybe she secretly liked pop music but she had totally uncool goth friends who were all about alternative music and created their own paradoxical clique of conformism. Or maybe none of that would happen. She knocked on the door in a pattern: Knock-knock-knock-knock-knock, knock-knock! "Remington, I'm heeeerreeeeee!" She said, though not nearly as loudly.
  15. Gallus sighed inwardly as Zap Apple denied the juice. He placed the cup down and rolled his eyes, though he couldn't help but smile. It was kinda funny seeing a little pony colt get so unnerved by even fake violence. He knew better than to say it though. Pony mothers certainly had a strange way of appreciating the foibles of their offspring and Gallus wasn't going to made an example of. Then the projector show started to fail. He got u and flew over, giving it a light tap. Nothing happened. He looked at the rolling part of the projector and saw that it was half-rusted. Maybe Rainbow didn't bother having one that was weather proofed? That sucked. With Gallus yelling out again at the horrible (cool) image being shown on the wall, he stopped the projector and then used the latch to pull the spool of film out, ending the show and ceasing its deployment of horrible images directly into Zap's brain. *knock* *knock* *knock* *knock* Who could that be? It seemed urgent. Probably because of the lack of noise now that the screaming and movies were over. He left the projector film on the table as he flew down to the door. "Be there in a second," he yelled out so whoeever was at the door could hear. He slicked back his feathers ever slightly as they had become disheveled over the course of the day. With himself being a little bit more presentable than before he took a breath and opened the door.
  16. Knowledge, like nature, abhorred a vacuum. And it was hard to have knowledge on a subject such as the dreamscape and how a pony's mind could entwine with another in such a way. Twilight knew it was possible. After all, all of Ponyville had once shared a lucid dream, powered by Luna's own magic. But knowing something was possible was different from knowing what the mechanics behind it were. It was the ground-floor cause of her frustration with Pinkie Sense. And she certainly had a blank spot when it came to answers. Why were these memories jumping around? Was Luna asleep herself, or was her own psyche being afflicted? It was hard to tell or understand, even as her brain tried. They focused now on this praying pony. And the lack of a sunrise- like grains of sand against a boulder, even the slowest of ponies could be moved by this awakening knowledge. Luna's power did nothing. A cackle in the distance. "Nightmare Moon. This is the night. Not of my nightmares, but yours." Luna stomped. She stomped again. Looking at the materialized floor, her orderly magic of dream skipping had not worked. "My normal means of travel have been hindered," she said frankly. Her horn lit up and she attempted to close the windows around her, but everything remained static, as if she was trying to ruin a sponge by pouring water on it. The concentration of magic to the window made the window more real. The focus on the doors to the outside of this area turned into tangible sturdy wood. She walked towards the pony who was still waiting for the sun to rise by the window and hovered over her projection. The night princess began chuckling. Twilight looked around, horn aglow with magic. She had to be ready. If Princess Luna was not in control of what was happening then that meant nopony was in control of what was happening. And for a pony with a knack for losing it when elements beyond her control managed to run rampant, she had to selfishly admire her own reaction. Ready to go, thinking of what she could and could not do, all the while her eyes running over the seams in reality that grew between the tangible and intangible. Then she heard the chuckling. "Luna?" Luna continued to stare out the window with the projection of the ancient pony. Her mild chuckled finished and she exhaled a sigh. "You don't understand do you? Princesses struggle all the time with their own emotions and shortcomings, always having regrets and dealing with rejection from those who do not appreciate you. It's why I am the way I am. Cold. Numb. But strong." She turned to look at Twilight Sparkle. Luna's pupils had become slit, but the rest of her appearance maintained regular princess pony shape. "You must admit, it would feel nice to get rid of all the worry you feel. All the failure you fear." Twilight stepped back, her horn now aglow with fiercer magic borne of...not fear, not terror. She had been through to much to feel that just yet. But it was certainly powered by something more than anxiousness, anxiousness which rose in her moment by moment as Luna spoke. What had happened? Her mind ran over the possibilities, including the one hidden deep inside that this whole night was a fever dream in the mind of the last living creature adrift in reality. She steeled herself regardless. After a few steps back, she stood her ground. "Being cold, being numb- that doesn't make you strong. That makes you weak. Confronting your fear, no matter what, that makes you strong. As does getting rid of responsibility because of fear of failure. I know I will struggle at times, but I know the cost of me abandoning it is so much higher," she said with growing confidence, and then her horn shone a white-purple, as if on fire. "And whatever you are, whoever you are, let Princess Luna go!" "Whatever I am?" She chuckled louder. "I'm the same thing that had you feared and miserably awaiting the eons in that floating castle, waiting for an end to your life that will never come, in order to cover the regrets and shortcomings your life had brought you. And now you think you can just zap me away? Well, I'm sorry it doesn't work like that." She stomped her hoof, and the small pony home they were in, slid out of existence. The two traveled via magical aura into space, until they both arrived on a grey plain of existence, that featured many rocky mountains, but not trees, no animals, no ponies, no colors. In the blackness of space above them, a circle of blue and grey could be seen in the distance. To the naked pony eye, it could have been several worlds away, but it looked as if one could pluck it out of the sky with their hooves. "The only way I think you know how to really learn this lesson--you like learning lessons right?--is to spend the length of time it took for me to do the same." Luna's appearance took the shape of Nightmare Moon the more she talked. And with her evil magic of her horn, spawned several chains around Twilight's ankles that began to pull her into the lunar soil. Twilight's charge found itself foiled by the changing environment, sending the alicorn sprawling into the soil of the Equestrian moon, tumbling head over flank once. The creature that was once Luna and was now her enemy...it once again rang the bell of her fear. Was- no. She was sure of it. Couldn't be The Thing That Should Not Be, Would Not Be, Was Not. Was it really Nightmare Moon? Was it a nightmare? She didn't know. But the threats it made felt all too real. When it finished speaking, the chains around her legs- they pulled her slowly, irrevocably, into the soil. With it came a certain tingle up and down her spine, whispering voices behind her mind. But- no. This was...was it a dream? Her confusion showed clearly, as did a growing fear. But her horn, her magic, was still powerful. "You are a lie made real. You can't win," a bright flash of light and she teleported into the sky- -and the chains brought her right back down, crashing into the moon with a hard crack. She would ask for the number on the trolley, but she was sure it didn't have any. She pulled her head up, defiant all the same. "What do you hope to gain from this, Nightmare?" She asked as she struggled against the chains, her mind running a million miles a minute as she ran through her catalog of spells. She just needed time, time to engage the creature as a cover. The evil princess slightly dodged the few pieces of moondust that floated a trajectory towards her from the impact the purple princess made into the regolith. "What do I hope to gain? Nothing. But what do you care to gain? I'm helping you see the light. Or, night, as it were." She gave a full gackle, now appearing in the Nightmare Queen's full armor and emblems. She even had a few slaved batponies approaching her flank. "What do you hope to gain by resisting? Why do you look forward to facing your misery with so much enthusiasm? How can you earn the support of your friends, when they are already dead!" Nightmare Moon flashed a bulb of magic black light from her horn, and it pierced a physical darkness around Twilight and her chains. Twilight was dumbfounded by how laser focused this apparition was. She didn't allow for Twilight to buy time. She immediately turned her question back on Twilight, mocking her efforts in her own way. And then she told Twilight her friends were dead, and a lump appeared in her throat. Such a life, so well-led, yet could it really be shared alone? These thoughts drowned her as easily as the darkness did. But it was not all that she was thinking of. Her brain had found an answer. Not the answer, but an answer. Just as the darkness consumed her and the chains, her horn lit up. There was no beam, no missile to dodge. Instead, Nightmare Moon would find herself grasped in powerful aetheric talons and pulled into the darkness with Twilight.
  17. Several hours and disappointing reactions later... Her saddlebag was heavier than she would have expected but truth was she was so nervous about making sure she had the right books that she just ended up picking up any text that even vaguely suited the study session. She winced every once in a while- and that once in a while being when her left hoof touched the ground- on account of her epic, world defining wound she had received in shop class. Her cousin may not have considered it a big deal and the school nurse may not have believed it required her to go the hospital and even Rarity thought she was taking it a little far, but she was wounded. Damaged goods. Damaged goods which required attention, ice cream, and some TLC to get this wounded horse back up and running. Nopony seemed to take this deadly assault against her soft frog as a serious crime against her figure, but she was determined to eventually get everycreature to acknowledge that she was a survivor of a serious injury. Maybe they'd make a banner for her like she had bandaged her hoof, dramatic and well done by the standards of the craft. Maybe she'd get the proper attention from Remington? She certainly hoped so. Somepony had to! She knocked on the door using her good hoof. "Remmmyyyy I'm heeeeeeerrrreeeee!"
  18. Azure Velour grumbled. She wasn't a morning pony. Truth was she was a midnight pony, used to dancing into the wee hours at clubs with friends and burning away her youth and money on entertaining and exhausting activities in Manehattan parties. She saw the sun rise before she slept as often as any other cause, at least on days when she wasn't on the early morning mail route. She hadn't hesitated a moment when she was offered the position of working alongside Countess Coloratura, the biggest pony in pop music. What a huge step in her career! She took dance classes all the time and worked heer flank off at one audition after another. She always did rather well and got good reviews, but there was so much brownnosing in the industry and she very much wasn't one of those and so she rarely saw any dedicated work offers. One projector video here, another show as a replacement there. So the chance to apprentice under the Countess, a pony who famously went through lesser backup dancers like they were tissues to be discarded? Azure knew her worth. Knew her quality. She was excited. Azure grumbled as she walked up the stairs, yawning as she did so. But she wasn't working with the Countess, was she? No. She was working for Rara. She liked Rara. She seemed like an honestly good pony with a lot of musical talent that was being bottled up by overproduction. But you know who liked overproduction because it meant more work for an aspiring dancer? Azure. She had just been working with the b-team back in Manehattan on a routine for her next projector video when she got the news that Svengallop was fired and that the production would be slimmed down. Trimmed down. Sorry, she meant almost entirely cut. That had been a hard few nights in some Manehattan bars as they worried over what was going to happen next. Azure was offered a position on Rara's team shortly afterwards. And these broken dreams and plans that didn't last I'll trade them for a future, I can't use them anymore She grumbled to herself as she drew close to where the sounds of Applejack and Rara were coming from, muffled as they were. She was happy to have a job this 'cool', she guessed. But that didn't mean she was happy to have her career stifled. Rara was going to do a tour with the Countess but not before she released a new album as Rara and, before that, had a tour with Apple Chord. Yeah, really. Apple Chord. Why not just say Applejack? That would do banging business and it would be honest, and wasn't that mare all about honesty? Seriously, she didn't get it. Nor did she understand why Coloratura needed help. Rara knew she could play acoustic guitar, had the vocal talent to pull it off, and was musically intelligent enough to know what was being 'taught' to her. Nah, she wasn't confused. Azure knew exactly why Rara had invited Applejack to her compound in Mustangia for the summer and change and it wasn't for a musical education, though an education of some kind it would be anyway. She took a deep breath and waited. She had to let these thoughts have their space to trot out of her mind before she went back in and worked with her boss again. It wasn't right to her, and it wasn't right to Applejack. If you don't mind the fact that all the merchandise is used With a little mending, it could be as good as new She opened the door and trotted in with a half-smile on as she worked her way into the booth. Rara sang in tune and line with Applejack, knowing this song well. Apple Chord hadn't made it to the big time but her albums had received enough acclaim for a pony of Rara's tastes to have found them. And when she put the equation together and knew who was the beating heart beneath these words she had listened to them plenty of times, especially recently. "The bargain store is open, come inside The bargain store is open, come inside," she finished close to Applejack, her eyes lidded with sadness mixed with a hint of desperation as she allowed the emotions to wash over her and end. She played out the song, putting the guitar down when she was done. "One of your bests, missy," she joked back, stretching her hooves as she looked back to Azure. "How's the morning treating you so far?" She beamed, clearly excited. Azure gave a hooves up. That was good enough. Rara nodded. "You know Apple Chord, your voice is really quite nice. Your guitar work too, not to mention the honesty of your lyrics. Why'd you call it quits, in the end?"
  19. She was relieved to know she wasn't expected to bring anything to their little study session later. She wasn't poor by any stretch- scratch that, she was pretty well-off- but she didn't really like the idea of having to run around and get herself stocked up when she was having to deal with the most serious injury in the history of ever. She had hurt herself before and was sure she'd hurt herself again but she was half-afraid if she told somepony about the injury that they wouldn't totally buy the circumstances behind it and some sort of weird investigation would be launched in her name. That wouldn't be the worst thing ever she supposed- she wouldn't lie, she liked a bit of drama every once in a while. But it would end poorly, she was sure of it. "Ahh. Ahh. Good, cool. Epic," she said with a smile, still hiding the wound. "Well, I'll meet you then, flycolt," she said with a happy wink, holding her position as he got ready to leave. "Have fun at gym!" She said as she waved off her friend. When out of sight she sidled up to her cousin and allowed a tear or two to fall. "Hey Professor, I have an injury to report and its totally grody!
  20. Twilight Sparkle sighed, shuffling the papers in front of her as she considered all that would soon come into play. She didn't like playing this role of hers, but it was hers to play in the grand scheme of things. A normal judge and jury may not fully appreciate this, and when called to act, Twilight was somepony who could hopefully understand the magical complications of the actions that had been taken. It made her uncomfortable. She knew it was part of her duty as Princess to act as a guide to all of Equestria but could she really as easily pass judgment on her own citizens? It had been a topic that she had discussed very briefly with Celestia and Luna. It had been something they hadn't enjoyed either, though Luna had been perhaps somewhat less taken aback by it. In no way did they shy away from it, but it was something Twilight knew to be wary of. The courtroom she had chosen was small. It didn't have the grandeur or pomp and circumstance that came with certain other courtrooms. It was dimly lit and direct. No rows for viewers, no great and large Equestrian flag. The seal of the Princess Twilight Sparkle was carved into the ground and two large benches faced her, one for the defense and one for prosecution. She sat in her judge's seat, the witness stand next to her. It was a bare-bones effort. Not out of laziness, but to strip the process of personality beyond one of guilt, innocence, freedom, and punishment. On Twilight's other side was a glowing orb of purple aether, the color of it changing subtly and providing the only light (even if faint) aside from the large slits in the wall that allowed in the sunlight and moonlight in depending on the time. "Let them in," she stated confidently, masking a good deal of her sadness at this task, the two guards near the door opening it to allow the accused and the accusers in. Two other guards were stationed along the wall closer to her, though both Twilight and her own guards were bathed only lightly in the light, her hooves seen but the back-half at best only half-glimpsed in the dim mood lighting of the room.
  21. The show was pretty sweet. A lot of the Daring Do books made for pretty cool shows and this was no exception, especially with the killer special effects and the more mature tone. Most of the Daring Do shows were made specifically to appeal to an all-ages audience. Sometimes the material could get a little scary or intense but the heroine always found her way out of danger and the bad guys always lost. That was true here, but this story featured a higher than average number of bad ends. If Gallus had been using his brain when he picked the show out he would have remembered that Zap Apple was a foal and that a ot of material was unsuitable for ponies his age. Unluckily for the pair of them, he hadn't been thinking that deeply on the subject. "Whats up?" He asked nonchalantly. It was then he noticed Zap Apple saying his name with no small amount of concern, and then the worries started to filter in. Maybe this had been a bad idea. A cool idea perhaps but a bad one. Still, maybe it would be okay. The dawning realization of what was about to happen struck the older bird just a few moments before it happened, his mind running for something to distract the foal with. A bead of sweat as he looked around, trying to find...and then it happened. It was graphic enough to stick out in a young mind and while Gallus probably would have thought it was cool. But yeah, apparently not Zap Apple. He pulled the foal in close and pat him on the head awkwardly. "Hey, stop the crying. It's okay. It's all fake, just a show!" He said in a desperate bid to keep the fella calm. He looked around- juice, ready to go? "Hey Zap, want some juice?" Clearly the perfect way out. Colts loved juice like hippogriff mares like plumbing!
  22. She recognized stalling for time when she saw it, especially since she reckoned he had to know at least a little about Fujis. Nonetheless, she humored him as she picked up a Fuji as if she were holding an ancient relic and describing it to a class. "Fuji apples? Well, they're one of tha sweetest apples we grow, though still has some tartness to it," she started off, struggling a little more to keep her sister pinned. "It's a bi-colored apple an' has fine-grain, creamy white flesh-" the struggle only increased- "an-an' one heck of a juicy, ultra-sweet bite that makes you think of freshly pressed apple juice," she said as she looked down once and frowned, though it was kicked off her face quickly. "They're nice an' crunchy too!" She said with a forced smile, putting the Fuji back into the bushel and deciding she'd had enough of this tomfoolery. Applejack heaved a sigh and let her leg up, the smaller Apple filly scrambling out of the mud messily as she tried to get up. Applejack didn't have the willpower for this foolishness now. She just wanted to sell some dang apples and make this day a booming business bonanza but she couldn't account for a little filly's heart-throbbing crush. He was a handsome fellow, she'd give her that. "Alright Apple Bloom, you want ta make a fool of yerself, make a fool of yerself," she said as she bent down, whispering angrily to her sister. "This is tha definition of bad business and yer makin' us look like a bunch of rascals and nincompoops," she said as she stepped back. "But you can go on ahead and do it. When yer done though, wash up. Ah reckon Ah'm not needin' yer services tha rest of tha night," Applejack finished before turning back to her customer. "Sorry for the hassle. I think she wants ta get this kiss! Ah'll take tha bits an' yer bushel is ready an' waitin'," Applejack said with a nervous laugh. It didn't take long for Apple Bloom, messed up mane and mud caked body and all smiles, to pull her way up to the stand, nearly face to face with the Prince. She tried to give her best half-lidded expression but it was hard with her giggling and blushing. *Prince Lee-Ann* Kissed 1-10 11-20 21-30 31-40 41-50 51-60 61-70 71-80 81-90 91-100
  23. Bon Bon was taken aback by her first customer. It was a crow. Rave. Craven. Row. Birds, flappy, black as night. She briefly wondered why they would be interested in her wares and hiow they could pay and whether or not they were going to peck her eyes out when the master of the feathery poverty fly boys showed up. He was a cute little unicorn with a cheery attitude that made her spine shiver with far less than delight, just north of fear. He was creepy. He should be a clown. They verged on the same style of scaring her, even if after a moment or two (and a helpfully unhelpful explanation from him about his minions) that concern passed as she went into business mode. "They're bonbons," she replied dully. Then she shook her head and yawned, giving a small laugh. "Sorry, just a little tired. These are bonbons. Chocolate, made with the finest of ingredients that a mid-tier baker with a bank account and some gumption could muster, which isn't half bad if I say so myself. And I don't: I say they're really good," she said as she pulled out a sample. "Five bonbons for five bits, and take an extra one on the house for being my first customer of the day," she said with a smile as she noticed the true heroine of the world came up to her. Any kirin that wanted to brush her was clearly the word's greatest hero. Bon Bon needed it. Her fur was matted with burned in sweat and her mane was a mess, not to mention her stringy tail. "You know what? You straighten this tail of mine out, a free bag of bonbons is in it for you," she said, only half-joking. She could seriously use the help right now, even if she wouldn't admit it in full. She wondered if this was part of some elaborate plan specifically designed to screw her out of sleep at the promise of great profit. Gallus laughed. "I'll keep a look out for new students, Chancellor. You know me, leading everycreature as a paragon of virtue and all that," he said while shooting talon guns at his Chancellor confidently. Well, as confident as he could pretend. He wasn't sure he was really the type of student other students would want to emulate but he didn't think it would be a big deal. He could probably help teach them the really important lessons- like what professors you could take naps in during classes as long as you came with an excuse (Fluttershy), who you could half-tail and still do well (Fluttershy), and whose class you could skip if you say you wee trying to help some animals (Fluttershy). What could he say? There was a reason she was his favorite. Speaking of favorites. "Hey there Silverstream!" He said as he perked up, heading deeper into the castle. "Yeah some of this is free, some isn't. Just pay attention- I think all the pay vendors are outside. I think?" He asked, shrugging his shoulders. Though he couldn't say no to potato skins, scooping up some as he passed by a free stall with them and nudging her in their direction. "Cards, potato skins, and maybe a private room. What could be better?" He asked as he flew deeper into the castle, away from prying eyes- though mostly just so he could sneak around and see if there were any castle secrets he didn't know about. If they ran into any new students, all the better.
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