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IceStorm

[Canterlot]My Night of Stars(Robikku, Open)

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A few weeks had passed since the night of the attack on the Crystal Empire, and while it seemed that most everything had been recovering quite well, Ice Storm still had what was left of her wound on her side from when the spear had cut her. She was moderately surprised it was taking as long as it was to heal but at the same time, the salve that she had was going to make it to where it healed without any sort of scar, so the slower the process the better it was working she presumed. She did not that the wound itself had been sealed and mostly the bandages where only there to keep the healing salve in place for it to do it's job.

 

She had already been closed now for just over a week, and she was relying on her funds from her Ponyville store to keep herself afloat right now. Her magic use she felt could get her by now, but it still left her a bit weak at the end of the day if she used too much of it. She made sure to try to use a bit more ever day to try to increase her natural resistance again. With any luck, she could open again in a few days and begin serving all of the ponies here in Canterlot once more.

 

For tonight though, tonight was a night of relaxing for her. she had spent a lot of the day out trying to get things prepared as well as going to the herbalist for a new supply of the salve that she needed to keep on her side. She already had everything set on her, and now she found herself resting under her favorite tree in the park just looking up to the sky. The freshly risen moon glinted off of everything on the ground as the silvery light basked and graced itself upon the landscape, casting shadows that some could describe as spooking while others could explain them as awe inspiring.

 

Ice Storm would always take the latter. She always found everything about the night skies intriguing. She liked how the stars aligned in the skies and that depending on how you looked at them, different shapes could be seen. her own icy blue coat was vibrantly reflecting the light from the moon where it was visible, although holding a more silvery tone than normal from the natural light given from the lunar beacon. The bandage around her waist also glimmered a bit, although was quite obvious to anypony that could see into the park.

 

"So many things have happened in so many different ways... and I'm not completely sure that I even understand them all..." she started to herself, using a small amount of magic to open her saddle bag and proceed in making herself a snow cone. "I can't help but wonder what is going to happen next, but whatever it is... I would very much prefer it not to happen for a while, at least if it's something that's going to cause harm to ponies. I don't think I could handle any major catastrophes again for a while..." she finished with a sigh as she took a lick from her cone and just peered into the sky.

Edited by IceStorm

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There were many things that had changed over the years - pony society had come on in leaps and bounds, many new magics and mechanical wonders existed...and whilst national relations with griffons remained much the same as ever, cultural integration with other species was very much reaching an entirely positive high. Indeed, it was a bright time in that of ponykind and those who affiliated with it...and for the most part, all things seemed to be doing better now than ever before.

 

For the most part, that is.

 

Tonight, after performing the duties of raising the moon, Luna had finally gotten around to reading some of the reports from the Crystal empire - she had never really been one to desire to delve into such sordid affairs, and even less so after her own moment of weakness. Still, a part of her had finally realised that she needed to understand just what kind of disasters had transpired, and wanted to know just how things of such a nature could still be happening even to this day...especially by an enemy that she and her sister had believed been vanquished so very long ago. It hadn't been hard to request a copy of a summary of events, and had taken surprisingly no time at all for the guard to get it delivered to her room door...especially for something as out of the ordinary and beyond comprehension as the events that had made an impact on so many lives a few months ago.

 

It only took a few pages, but Luna decided that she needed to handle this heavy reading a night at a time, and thus decided to take one of her rare night-flights to clear her head of what she had been reading. She used to partake in such solo flights before banishment, occasionally just to enjoy the feeling of being her own pony in the air, for a few moments entirely unhindered by the royal status that was hers on the realms below - in the air, she was simply another passenger on the air...but one in control of the directions she faced.

 

Perhaps, she thought, it was a night to simply roam and see just what might be seen in Canterlot - the nightlife that existed in these times was far more prolific than it had ever been, and whilst Luna did not always have time to mingle with ponies outside during the evening, she was still appreciative that such ponies were even a thing at all. This had been all she'd truly wanted - to have ponies who would appreciate and acknowledge her work for the night sky in the same manner as many ponies would adore her sisters admittedly wonderous mornings and days.

 

Canterlot was certainly home to many such ponies, as she had noted during prior visits - long-open shops and gathering places were populated well into the early hours, which made it an entirely pleasant sight for the Princess as she soared into the bustling city...towards the rather unpopulated park where it would be far easier to simply touch down and take a few moments to relax before making her way towards the inner city for some quiet observation of those who might be awake and very much alive in the twilight hours.

 

Making her landing in the seemingly unpopulated park, Luna takes a moment to just stretch her wings and ponder her activity for the night - no doubt she should probably cast an invisibility spell for the night, but as of this rather quiet moment, perhaps she should simply just enjoy the quiet for a little while before disappearing into Canterlots hustling throngs of ponies...afterall, it wasn't like she had such chances for a little personal peace and quiet in such serene surroundings when she was so often surrounded by royal guards, advisers and the like back at the castle. 

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Ice Storms thoughts continued to run rapid for a bit as she continued her first snow cone of the night. it may have been just part of her natural affiliation with the element of ice, but whenever she was eating a snow cone, or around anything cold in general she seemed more at peace than she was when she was anywhere else. Of course, the calm starlit sky seemed to have quite the effect on her nerves as well. She had a very hard time staying tense or upset when she looked up to the night sky. It had been the one thing that she'd always looked to since she was a filly, keeping her spirit strong and guiding her through the most troubled part of her life. What she had encountered at the Crystal Faire though was far worse than anything she had experienced before though. At least physically speaking, no pony was hurt from anything that had transpired when she was a filly. At the Crystal Faire, many ponies got hurt, and some of them never got to go home again... She shook her mind of the thoughts though. "No. That can't happen again. I don't know how much I can help, or even if I have any ability to, but if I sit back and do nothing... then I just won't feel right..." she thought to herself.

 

At this point her first snow cone was gone and she had already started making her second. She could feel the pull of magic tugging at her but she also knew that she was nowhere close to exhausting herself yet. Instead of trying to continue on the though pattern that she was on, she tried to start piecing together everything that she would need to get finished with her shop tomorrow and the day after in order to be able to open when she wanted to in a couple days. "Alright... I've resupplied with fresh fruits and fresh syrups... the water and Ice aren't a problem as I can make them easily enough... The temperature seems to be okay... It feels like it's starting to warm up a bit. I would prefer it if it stayed cool like this all the time, but alas, I highly doubt the opinion of an ice pony one what the weather of an entire city would be like," she giggled to herself as she caught a glance to the sky and saw something fly over head. She wasn't sure what it was at first until her eyes managed to track the object moving through the sky. It looked like a silhouette from the distance, but as soon as the pony landed and the moonlight adjusted to her. Ice Storm immediately recognized her. Of course, it would be hard pressed for anypony not to recognize the Princess of the night.

 

Ice Storm began to wonder if Luna had seen her sitting in the park or if perhaps she had just been landing in the park by sheer coincidence. Naturally she figured that the princess would enjoy the park as much as anypony else was so it wouldn't be unheard of for her to come here. She wondered if she should approach the princess or whether she should let the princess decide whether or not she wanted to engage in each other's company. It was quite possible that the princess was looking to relax and unwind and she wouldn't want the princess to think that she needed something or to bother the princess during a relaxing period for her. The lack of guards around her also gave Ice the feeling that she was here to relax. She smiled and pushed herself up. Perhaps if she made it known that she too was looking to relax, then perhaps it could be an even more amazing night for both of them. She quietly made her towards the princess, but made sure her hoofsteps were somewhat audible as to ensure the princess knew she was not trying to sneak up on her. "Good evening Princess. Might I say you have done quite a beautiful job with the arrangement of the stars tonight. They compliment the moon quite well," she smiled.

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"Good evening Princess. Might I say you have done quite a beautiful job with the arrangement of the stars tonight. They compliment the moon quite well,"

 

It appeared as though Luna hadn't paid nearly as much attention to if anypony else was in the park as she had expected - the sudden spoken question threw the Princess offguard slightly, as she realised that she wasn't fully prepared for such an event...although, she reminded herself inwardly, she was not going to turn anypony away if they wished to talk on a casual mutual ground such as this. If ever there was truly an opportunity to reach out to ponies, this was certainly one that was being presented towards her with, it seemed, nothing that would require any second thoughts - a simple open comment about their appreciation of the night, and one that deserved an equally open and appreciative response!

 

" It is...appreciated - the arrangements usually take quite a while to consider in advance - it is often with considerations to aetheric laylines and the flow of harmonious energies that assist in channelling... " She paused and clears her throat softly, not wanting to turn this simple conversation into a one-way discussion of the complexities involved with her duties and how her star alignments are designed to enhance the magical energies of the land in different ways. " Apologies, I can oftentimes find myself unable to share certain details to anypony beyond that of My sist-...Princess Celestia. "

 

Whilst it was no doubt common knowledge that she and Celestia were sisters, Luna preferred to at least make an attempt to keep some level of formality when addressing her name with other ponies - if only to keep up the general appearances of Royalty, as the ponies of Equestria would no doubt be expecting of her...or would they? She could really only guess at such things, considering that how things were done once as opposed to how things may be done now could have changed - it was safer to play it the formal way at any rate, A somewhat professional appearance would no doubt inspire ponies, if anything else.

 

" I don't often get much opportunity to talk to another pony about the night - and so hearing it's appreciation is still somewhat new to me. " Luna comments, looking towards Ice with a curious expression on her features.

" I cannot deny that it's pleasing to hear from those that have enjoyed my contributions within the night sky - t'is not something I get many comments on at the castle, in fact! "

 

It was fairly true, since despite the obvious discussions Luna held with Celestia about her work, not a large amount of anypony else there gave direct thoughts on such things...so, as a result, this was quite a bright event for the Princess!

Edited by Robikku Pegasus

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It had appeared that even though she took measures to make sure that she wouldn't spook the princess, she still caught her a bit off guard. That wasn't really hard to do though if she was expecting the park to be empty at this time of night. Which meant that she had not seen her when she made her initial arrival. So she was in fact, here to relax on her own. Ice Storm did give a genlt smile to the princess though as she began speaking, telling her that her praise was appreciated, and how it took a lit of time to plan the star's arrangements because of the laylines in Equestria. She sounded like she could have gone on about a lot more but quickly cut herself off. Although Ice Storm herself wouldn't have minded. The stars themselves were attuned to how magic worked in Equestria? That was interesting to say the least. The princess was quick to offer an apology to her, telling her that she can oftentimes find herself unable to talk to anypony else about the night other than her sister, whom she corrected into saying Princess Celestia. "It's not a problem princess, I completely understand," she smile to her.

 

When she continued, she also mentioned that she didn't often get to talk to others in general about her night, so hearing the appreciation of it is still somewhat new to her. Ice instantly felt bad for her. Even ponies around the castle didn't compliment her nights? It seemed rather discourteous of them to simply expect something like this and not comment on the beauty that lies henceforth afterwards. "Well, you'll always be able to count on me to be able to give you loving comments about our nights. Believe it or not, your nights actually helped me way more than most would probably believe. It served as an inspiration to me, and gave me the strength I needed to pull through the hardest part of my lift when if felt like everything was lost. Your moon was the one thing that I could count on to always be there. I knew that even if I couldn't see it in the sky because of clouds, it was always up there watching me. It made me feel safe, and for that, I can say I am most appreciative," she finished with a smile to the princess.

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This was becoming quite an interesting little dialogue - it had been a little while since Luna had truly spoken at length with somepony about the night who truly wanted to understand more about it, and could at the very least offer an honest thought about what they feel about it instead of simply offering answers somewhat often intended to pacify and placate her - either because of a lack of understanding, or lingering doubts about her mentality over the subject. She held no ill will against anypony, of course, those days were long gone...but that didn't always settle the desire to simply speak at length with somepony other than her sister on a topic that was not always easily understood or comprehended. Whilst, of course, she did not expect Ice to know such things to any great degree, it was clear that she wanted to...the sense of wonder and awe of the night sky didn't go amiss to Luna.

 

" Truly, you feel that strongly about the nights? " she asks with an almost disbelieving tone...gentle, more curious in tone than anything else. " It's good to hear that my...work, I suppose you could call it, has aided in inspiring anypony at all. We have all faced hardships in life, and whilst things may indeed be dark and uncertain when they take hold...there is always a light, a proverbial star that will shine over you and show you the way through them, and it is through this that you can often find the strength within you to make such things happen. " She says, glancing upwards towards the skies above with a small smile on her muzzle before just giving a slight chuckle.

" ...or something like that, I suppose - my sister was usually much more apt at the metaphore thing...but I hope that you get my point. "

 

" The night can be a long, rough time for a pony who is lost within it! " She turns her attentions back towards Icy with a quick nod before continuing with her little summation of what she had been trying to say.. 

" it is by finding your way to the new dawn that you prove to yourself that you are indeed stronger than you believe yourself to be - and from what you say, it sounds like you've seen quite the dark skies! "

She wasn't going to pry too much - afterall, it wasn't her place to poke and prod into a ponys personal life...but there was no denying she was curious to know more about this rather interesting young mare!

 

She decides to try and perhaps change the tone of the conversation slightly away from such things for the immediate moment and address something they had not yet tended to!

" If I may ask, Miss, I never caught your name...it is unusual for anypony to get into a discussion without first knowing who it is they are addressing, would you not agree? "

Edited by Robikku Pegasus

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When the princess asked if she truly felt as strongly as she had said about her night, Ice Storm nodded. Everything that she had spoken to the princess about her nights were pure from her own thoughts. As the princess continued, she spoke about how it was nice to hear that others could draw inspiration from her work. That everypony has faced hardships in life, and by her graces she knew Luna has had it as hard as anypony else. She shuddered to try to even imagine the situation she was in so long ago. Luna also added that even in the darkest of times, there is always a light of sorts. To which Ice nodded, smiling as the princess apologized, as she claimed to be not as good at the metaphor thing as her sister, but hoped hat she understood what she meant. "I understand it perfectly," she laughed lightly, as the princess asked for her name. "Oh! My apologies princess! My name is Ice Storm, but all of my friends call my Icy. A name you're more than welcome to use yourself if you choose," she smiled once more.

She then pondered over how to next say what she wanted to say without having it come of as presumptuous, as she meant what she was going to try to say as a compliment, but the wording was proving to be a bit tricky for her. "Although, you'd probably be more surprised to know that it was actually you who was my primary source of inspiration. All through out school I had heard the stories, and while many were a bit spooked by them... I was generally saddened. Saddened that somepony like you would have to go through something like that, and also because that story struck very, very close to home for me as well. The feelings that were being shown from what happened... are feelings I know too well. But, with the right help, you managed to get out of your dark time, and in turn, help somepony else out of theirs without even knowing it," she said to the princess with a smile. "I was one of those ponies. Although now, after the recent events up north, I fear there are man more that are in worse circumstances now than I have ever been in," she added, thinking back a bit to what happened up north in the Crystal Empire, her own bandages a clear indication that she was there during said event.

Edited by IceStorm

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Luna gives a small sigh of relief when told that she hadn't entirely made a mess of that particular effort of an analogy - she was one who usually preferred to try to be more direct in dreams whenever tackling a pony and their inner selves during her nightly scouting of the dreamscape. Truth be told, she had always tried to distance herself from Celestia's occasional aloofness and offer some truthful forwardness when she knew it was required...speaking in constant riddles and quandries could tire a pony out, including the one speaking them. A thought occurred to her that this is all very second nature to zebras - a species with whom she had encountered many a time...perhaps one day she should attempt to get more invested in learning to speak as they did, perhaps it would lend a little added showmanship around her dream-bound diatribes.

 

At any rate, she acknowledges the words spoken to her and gives a grateful smile to the pony, giving a quick chuckle as she looks around the park - ponies can be seen a distance away going about their nightly activities, of course, but none of them were yet paying any attention to the location currently...although undoubtably the inevitable would happen sooner or later even if it didn't truly matter much. 

 

Upon returning her attention to Ice, the mood seemed to take on a much more sombre air - Luna realised for the first time that the bandages were even present around her waist. It seemed that her prior 'brief' thought about finding out a little more about the incident in the crystal empire was taking an unexpected turn, and she couldn't help but think how strange life was...presenting her with something that related to the very thing she had taken a momentary break of attention from. Still, it would be rude of her to simply disregard this ponys plight, and thus Luna spoke again - with genuine curiosity and concern, of course...whilst she may not have been wanting to deal with the events as a document, there was no reason to avoid the very real consequences the event had left on citizens involved.

 

" I hear that was...a very intense moment for many ponies that day. My sister was even called to oversee a courtroom proceeding regarding it, but she has told me nothing further. " She frowns slightly.

" To think there are still those who would prefer to destroy what we have, rather than choose to co-exist...truly the dark will of Sombra seems to be something even myself and Celestia are unable to truly put to rest! "

 

In truth, there was no telling what had happened to Ice - but she hoped that perhaps through a little conversation that there would begin to be an exchange of just what it was that took place for her that bitter day in the Crystal Empire...hopefully, of course, without rendering too much emotional trauma upon the poor mare. Clearly she had been through so much hurt already, Luna didn't really want to make this conversation a focal point to dragging up all of this unnecessarily - if nothing was offered up freely, Luna would then immediately know better than to pry further and change the subject with haste!

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A simple nod was the only reaction that Ice Storm could give when Luna had told her that it was a very intense moment for many ponies and that her sister was even called into a trial over the event. She was appalled by the thought that there were still those out there that would rather try to destroy what we have than to try to co-exist. It was a sentiment that she agreed with as well. Why throw something like this away? Sure things weren't perfect all the time, but they were for the most part peaceful at least. And ponies didn't run around killing each other at all, much less for no reason. "It is something that I have a hard time wrapping my own head around myself. I just don't understand how somepony or something could just try to throw away everything that we have. I under stand that they may not agree with everything that is being done in some way, shape, or form. I don't know what they wouldn't agree with, but I at least understand the fact that ponies don't always see eye to eye on everything, but simple discussions can usually solve most of those issues. Even if they don't then at least for opposing units of regions that have nothing to do with each other could simply ignore each other. I suppose for some it's just not that easy," she started.

 

"It's funny though that you mentioned the court trial. I don't know how much I'm actually allowed to disclose of it myself but I was actually one of the key witnesses in the trial, as I was actually in The Spire when the attack started and the Red Jarl came into the room with the vault. At the time he claimed that Twilight had already been killed and was seeking the contentions that had been sealing in a vault that he said required you and Celestia to open. At the time, I didn't know that the vault was armed with a bomb, so I was trying everything I could to make sure that vault didn't get opened. I noticed that many of the guards in the room weren't doing anything to stop anything that was happening so they must have been under the same guise that the other one that chased us was. And in the absence of a guard, I also understood that the responsibility falls upon ourselves to protect those that we care for. That included yourself and Celestia. I wasn't about to let them out of the room to try the find the two of you and do who only knows what to you."

 

"Then the golden colored guard came in with Twilight, and the Jarl confirmed that she was still alive, and also displayed a flagship that housed barrels of explosives on it and used her hooves to open the vault, which then exploded, weaking the building even more. That was when the real fighting and the chaos ensued... I've never seen so many ponies or things get mauled like that before, and I know many of them didn't leave that room alive, at least those who stayed and fought. I was going to stay and fight, but then I saw the number of ponies that were still up there from the party that couldn't fight. There were fillies and colts up there as well, and they needed to get out. I also knew that Twilight had no way out herself, as she was completely unconscious, and was for a good time afterwards. I knew that because of the nature of my magic, I stood the best chance of getting the ponies out. Ice is a very versatile magic to where it can be used for utility spells, offensive spells, or defensive spells depending on how much Ice you make, how you make it, and how dense it is."

 

"Using this to my advantage, I made some armor around myself by encasing plates of ice around my body, and went after Twilight. It was actually during this charge that I realized how dangerous the weapons that they were using were because one of their spear tips sliced completely through my armor and still gave me a fairly deep gash on my side. Thankfully, that was the only injury I encountered other than over-expendication from using way, way too much magic in one day. One I had Twilight on my back though and we got into the main hall, things were pretty smooth from there. I used my magic to create an ice ramp down the stairs to get everypony out quickly as we could already feel the top of the spire starting to give. One of the stallions that was exiting with us, also had an airship that we used to get away from the spire, and it's a good thing we did because it came down not too long after we got on it. Twilight was still unconscious when I passed out, and the wound on my side had gotten pretty bad. The next thing I remember, I woke up in the Crystal Empire Medical Center, and pretty much looked exactly like I am now, except, with a slightly more embarrassing attire," she finished with a smile.

 

"It was not a good day at all, but I can't say that I wouldn't act like that again if the situation needed it. I have no problems putting my life on the line to let somepony else make it out of a situation in one piece," she smiled once more turning back to the princess.

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There was no doubt about it, Miss Storm had been through so very much...and she had yet put up such a resiliant brave face whilst recounting events that no pony should have had to take part in - the events of the Crystal Empire attack had been such that many ponies lives may well have changed that day!

 

Luna nodded softly, letting the mare detail her experiences as much as she needed to...there was no hurry, no fuss required to move things along since the night was young and there was no call to hinder or cut off what was being told. the Princess was not one to ignore the plight of such a young thing, having been in uncomfortable situations herself many a time even BEFORE the banishment...things were never truly easy, and who better to know this than one who had lived long enough to see many situations and tragedies play out.

 

" You acted bravely indeed! " she states, a concerned eyebrow-raise indicating that she had listened to the words spoken closely. " You very easily could have lost your own life in defending those others and lending a hoof...I should hope you never need to put yourself in such risks again, nopony should have to confront that level of danger more than once in their lifetime for sure. "

 

The ease of how Ice Storm had spoken about being unafraid to repeat her actions if she needed to was, nonetheless, a very inspirational part of the tale told, and Luna had utter respect of what had been done to save lives that day. It was just a shame that she suffered such an injury - of course, as had been told to her by the young mare, the injury was healing well and she was recovering as much as could be expected - and yet it seems as though there had been no true celebration for the efforts displayed...something Luna pondered on at least considering to put right somehow, no matter how small.

 

" As far as I see it, your bravery deserves some form of recognition! " she comments after taking a moment to think on this. " it is only fitting that you should get some repayment for your acts of courage and selflessness in the conflict at the crystal empire...and once I can decide on something suitable for such an award, it shall be rendered upon to you and others who took part in such a treacherous event. Even if Celestia has, without my knowledge, deliberated on some type of recompense...I, Princess Luna, shall also deliver a reasonable reward of service on those who deserve it. " 

 

Perhaps it was a little silly to offer such things at this time, but Luna was not one to simply ignore acts of bravery in the face of great danger...and even if it took her some time, she would find SOMETHING worthy to award Ice, and those she had escaped with, as symbols of Equestria's respect towards the actions undertaken!

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As Ice Storm finished recounting the events that had transpired up north, she heard the princess begin speaking about her bravery and how she could have very easily lost her life doing what she had done. that she also hoped that she didn't have to experience anything like that again. That no pony should have to experience that level of danger more than once in her live. Ice nodded. "I would like to agree with that, but I fear that my bout there was the first of many dangerous encounters I'm going to be put up against. I... got an invitation from a group called EPIC. So far all I know about them is that they are a special forces group deemed on protecting Equestria from unforeseen dangers. Other than that, I've never heard of them before. I'm supposed to go to Savareighno next week for a meeting," she told the princess.

 

As she mentioned it, she now began to wonder if it was something that she should have brought up at all. What if the princess didn't know anything about the organization and they weren't supposed to? What if it was one of those things that was intentionally kept in the dark due to plausible deniability. Oh well, it wasn't like she could give any more information on the group anyways. She herself knew nothing about it aside from what was in the pamphlet that she got from them that contained the invitation. That in of itself was not a lot. IT was probably meant to be like that in case the mail had gotten intercepted by somepony that wasn't supposed to be receiving it.

 

the big surprise to her though came when Luna talked about how her actions required some sort of recognition. That it was only fitting for such acts pf selflessness to be repayed in full. She added that once she could decide on a suitable award, it would be rendered to her and the others that took part in such an horrific event. That even if her sister had already done so without her knowledge, that she herself would deliver a reasonable reward to those who deserved it. She smiled and shifted her gaze to beyond Luna into the city of Canterlot. "While I can't speak for the others that were involved in the disasters that day, I personally don't need any recompensation for my actions. While I do greatly appreciate the offer," she started pointing out into the city of Canterlot.

 

"I know for a fact that some of the ponies that I helped escape were from here, and the fact that I can look out and see everypony with their families, being happy after such a traumatic event, and safely assume that the others I helped out are experiencing the same regardless of where they are is all the compensation I need. Their safety, their happiness, their lives all still intact. The fact that I know I was a part of keeping it like that, is worth more than any building, bit, or fame I could gain from such an act. I do greatly appreciate the gesture though," she smiled as she turned back to the princess.

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Princess Luna had heard the word EPIC mentioned perhaps a few times, but her involvement was non-existant...it was mostly just something she had snatched in brief discussions once from afar, and had never truly looked into the group itself. For now, she listens further to Iceys words - it was one thing to be put in danger by mistake, and quite another to use that experience to place yourself in a dangerous positions in order to ensure others needn't go through similar. It was truly an admirable tale, and one that Luna could not help but give a small smile at when she considered the sheer bravery the pony before her was demonstrating, even if she truly didn't realise it herself.
 
She decided it was better, for now, to let the mention of the group go unquestioned - if they saw it fit for her to be a part of whatever their operations decided she was suitable for, she need not make a point on it...no doubt the mare was already aware and considering her place in things, and it wouldn't be prudent to query something she was not particularly a part of herself by her own decisions.
 
the discussion about her personal awards for those involved had been met with some polite refusal - Luna had a feeling this would be the case, as the mare seemed entirely motivated by others and not her own self...at least as far as the events that had been described to her so far. A most remarkable mare, this Ice Storm, and one that Luna felt was certainly a very interesting pony to simply bump into on such a night as this - then again, sometimes the strangest of circumstances had a reasoning behind them...and Luna had no problem in attempting to discern the underlying direction of this evenings encounter.
 

 

 

"I know for a fact that some of the ponies that I helped escape were from here, and the fact that I can look out and see everypony with their families, being happy after such a traumatic event, and safely assume that the others I helped out are experiencing the same regardless of where they are is all the compensation I need. Their safety, their happiness, their lives all still intact. The fact that I know I was a part of keeping it like that, is worth more than any building, bit, or fame I could gain from such an act. I do greatly appreciate the gesture though,"

 

" I suppose that is reward in itself, Miss Ice. " Luna says with a small nod of acknowledgement. " Truly, you are quite an example for others - I do wish you well on your endeavours with EPIC, whatever they may well be. I know that from speaking with you so far, you most definitely have an interesting time ahead of you...and am sure you could serve as quite a role model for those who encounter you, and those others whom were a part of this, in future. "
 
It struck the princess that perhaps their conversation had been a little too in the direction of rescues, distress and uncomfortable situations - for now, it seemed as though a better idea would be to try and lighten the situation up a little by trying to make things a little less so. " It seems as though you were out on a nightly walk when I arrived - are you out here solely to enjoy the night, or perhaps you intended on enjoying some nightly activities for a while? "

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Ice Storm nodded when Luna commented that the lives of others was a good reward in of itself, but blushed a bit when she added that she was truly and example for others to follow. Given the situation this was true, but she still had a relatively short fuse when it came to her temper. When the right things were said to her, she isn't so awe-inspiring as she was in the Crystal Empire. She did tell her that she definitely had an interesting time ahead of her, and that she wished her well on whatever endeavors she might partake in within the newly formed group. She still wasn't' sure what kind of Role Model she could be, but hearing such a high honor being bestowed on her by the princess did give her the feeling that she would need to attempt to scale back her temper in the future when dealing with minor events. "I appreciate the compliment. I don't know what kinds of things I will encounter there myself. But, I will use what experience I do have to help me through whatever I end up in."

 

After that, the conversation took a turn, a more lightly tone as the princess asked as to the reason she was out here to begin with. She addressed that it seemed like she was out here for some sort of walk when she arrived. Ice Storm politely shook her head. "Actually, I was simply just star gazing," she smiled and pointed to the hill that she came from. "When I a filly, I had some... family issues, and it ended up me running away to Canterlot. That hill is where I spent most time here in Canterlot just looking at the stars and the sky. I used the moon as my place of refuge, the one thing that I could always count on to be there. Tonight of course it much different than it was back then. Tonight I was just watching the stars and seeing what constellations were about tonight. I hadn't planned on too much of a nightly outing otherwise, but I would not be opposed to one given the turn of events. Perhaps we could go to the Happy Bean and I could buy you some coffee, or any other drink you'd like? I know he's open pretty late."

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It was good to finally at least manage to break the conversation away from the slightly bleaker side of things - Luna was grateful to see that Ice had somewhat relaxed a little more...although clearly the story of what had just been told would be weighing quite heavily on the poor mares mind. It was certainly an unfortunate tale, and one that Luna hoped would not trouble the young mare too much in the rest of her life to come...such an event was as much a chance for growth, afterall, as it was for times of sadness.

 

At any rate, the offer for coffee was extended - Luna was somewhat taken aback, she hadn't exactly had a casual 'cup of' anything in a very, very long time - most of everything regarding her life these days was tended to by way of those serving her status alongisde her sisters own. Such a tempting offer was not something Luna was quite capable of turning down, despite the fact that the absurdity of the idea that a Princess would be casually sharing coffee with somepony in some local cafe - it was unheard of, it was unroyal, it was...exactly the kind of change of pace she welcomed.

 

" Why, that does sound quite a thing! " Luna says with a hint of amusement. " A coffee in a regular location? I could never turn down such an offer! " - it was true, too...the Princess of the night was slightly elated somewhat at just having an opportunity to relax at a nearby place. Holding up a hoof, Luna replies with a faint hint of a giggle behind her words. " Coffee will suit me just fine - t'is the darkest drink I know of! ".

 

She was all too aware that perhaps it was a little...hasty to put herself into this situation unnannounced, but the offer just seemed entirely too hard to resist!

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A bright, yet soft smile could be seen on Ice Storm's face when the princess accepted her offer for coffee. She giggled a bit in response to the word choice that Luna used. "Don't have a chance to get out that often do you Princess?" she asked commenting on how she mentioned having coffee in a regular location. She actually felt kinda bad for the princess. She couldn't imagine having to be confined to the castle for most of your waking time due to delegations, attending to the courts, or when really important visitors arrive. She couldn't imagine how much it actually took for a mare, or in this case two, to run an entire empire. It was awe inspiring itself, but she hoped that the princess would be able to get out and enjoy herself more often.

 

She couldn't help but let out another giggle when the princess commented that coffee would be fine because it was the darkest drink that she knew. Ice nodded. "I certainly haven't found one any darker. I also heard the darker the coffee the stronger it actually is. I supposed that can be a good or a bad thing depending on the pony drinking it," she giggled as she turned towards the exit of the park that was going to be the closest to The Happy Bean. "I'm ready to head there when you are princess."

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Luna gives a small entertained chuckle - the mare seemed to be in quite good spirits, which was certainly something to be commended...no seeming sense of being greatly awed by royalty to approach her simply as a pony who liked taking part of things everypony else might do. She gave a small smile and stretched her wings slightly, before folding them back neatly into their natural resting position - The prospect of actually getting to check out a more humble little cafe surprisingly more exciting than the princess had figured she would have thought it would have been originally.

 

For the longest time, Luna had been more privvy to locations fit more for a royal status when visiting locations either in Equestria or beyond, and for once was entirely keen to simply take a few steps down from her usual 'so-called' hangouts to investigate places that she otherwise may not have considered before. An offer such as this was simply what she needed to attempt getting herself more involved with the citizens of Equestria.

 

" Well, I do not see any requirement in hanging around this little location for too long considering - lead the way! " she says with a firm nod of affirmation. " I am most curious to see just what lies ahead...lead on, Miss Storm-I mean...Icy! " Luna pauses and coughs gently into a hoof, correcting herself to at least attempt a more casual address. " Well, rest assured I shall attempt to improve upon my efforts to address you on a much less formal basis...even if it takes a little while to do so! "

 

She did mean it, really she did...it was just not always easy to switch gears when you've lived one over the other for so very long!

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The amount of cheerfulness that seemed to emanate from the princess was more than just a bit contagious as it began to spread over to Ice Storm as well. If somepony would have told her that she would be having coffee with the princess tonight during her normal night stargazing. She would have called the pony crazy, but alas, here they are. She also giggled as the princess seemed to struggle with in-formalities. "It's okay princess. You may call me whatever you feel comfortable calling me. After all, I wouldn't want you to be uncomfortable at all while we're supposed to be having a good time. That said, would you be offended if I just called you Luna or would you prefer princess?" she asked her. The princess had stated that she was looking to be a bit more informal, but she wasn't sure how far that exactly went.

 

After a few more minutes of walking they had left the park, and The Happy Bean wasn't too far away. I fact Icy could see it from where they were standing. "There's The Happy Bean right over there. Looks like it is indeed still open for the night, as I see a couple other ponies in it as well," she smiled to the princess.

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An impromptu night of socialising and coffee with ponies whom she wouldn't otherwise see or speak with - it seemed much like an idea that had the potential for both good or bad eventualities, but Luna was prepared to face them all head on...afterall, her sister gallavanted off during the day to events that the Nighttime princess didn't attend, so it seemed only right that the younger sister would take her own chances at doing the same where an opportunity would present itself. The princesses, whilst not always meant to be readily available every moment of every day, should at least be seen in the presence of those whom would revere and adore them - it seemed to be the only true way of giving back some of the love and respect that was showered upon them on a daily basis...at least, that was what Luna had concluded as of recently,

 

As it was, Ices small question about how to address her lingered, and thus Luna gave a resolution to it after a further moments deliberation - coming to what felt to be a much more fitting response than merely telling the mare what to do outright.

" Please, for tonight...call me whichever you feel is appropriate - on one hoof, I have stated an intention to be more informal with other ponies when socialising, but...well, t'is hard to pretend that my title is not in play either. It feels much more fitting that I grant you the leniancy on the matter, to allow you to make your own choice! "

 

Upon seeing the location of their choice, she smiled warmly - it seemed as though she would be getting quite an interesting sample of night life tonight...and she was curious to see just what lay in store beyond those inviting doors!

With any luck, there would be some decidedly interesting ponies to speak with...and some very delightful late night snacks to indulge in also!

 

" I look forward to seeing what we shall be privy to this night, Icy...come, let us make haste and enter! " she announces with enthusiasm, as she promptly makes her way towards the cafe...eager to see what lay ahead!

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Ice Storm gave a small nod when Luna told her that she may address her however she wished. That she couldn't she wanted to be more informal with ponies when socializing bit that it was hard to pretend that the the title wasn't in play either. "Well then, I think I will honor your wish to be more casual and address you as Luna for the night. I feel it only fitting since we are not engaging in official business, but speaking as friends and from one pony to another. It just so happens that one of the two ponies involved has a vast knowledge and wisdom from centuries of experience," she smiled. Tonight had already proved to be one of the most memorable than she'd had in a while. After all, it wasn't every night that the pony you've looked up to your entire life passes by you while your gazing upon her creation.

 

As they walked, the princess spoke again as she commented that the cafe was near by. She wanted to make haste and see what she would be able to find on this night. "Well, the happy bean is a place where many of the ponies from the university come after a long night. It's a great place to unwind with friends," she said as she followed Luna. "In fact, I've met some of my closest friends here," she smiled as she sent a flick of her magic and opened the door for Luna to enter. "After you."

 

 

(OOC: This thread is now open for all who would like to participate. Current Location is The Happy Bean Coffee Shop and Café during the twilight to night hours)

Edited by IceStorm

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While it was mainly students that tended to frequent the Happy Bean, alumni would from time to time patronize the coffee shop, particularly those who were writers and artists.  It was one of the good hangout spots if a Canterlot pony wanted to stay plugged into the discussions and opinions of the young drivers of culture.  Or one could just have a cup and relax, but from the sounds within, it seemed unlikely tonight...

 

Something of a heated conversation was going on, mostly between the rest of the room and one stallion perched upon a barstool.  He was a unicorn, tan in coat, black in mane; and from the press card in his hat, apparently a journalist.  Upon Luna and Ice Storm's entrance, he was in the act of laying down the law, oblivious to new arrivals.  "Not qualified to judge!?  That's rich, coming from a colt who hasn't gone north of Trottingham.  I can claim to have seen them at their best, and at their worst, and I still maintain that we have neither the duty nor the right to turn all the rest of the world into a copy of ourselves, even and especially those parts into which we come into violent collision!"  It seemed he was almost willing to rest his case with that remark, draining his cup while the rest of the patrons turned in surprise to greet the sudden arrival of the Princess of the Night.

 

Opening one eye over the top of his cup, the stallion peered at the door for the first time, and almost choked on the last drop of his coffee.  "Your majesty!"  He looked a little non-plussed at first, but he then composed himself, tipping his hat at both her and Ice.  "Sorry, you caught me in the middle of a debate on international affairs.  I was just schooling some young fool who thought it acceptable to bad-mouth cultures of whom he was ignorant."

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Rather than do my usual characters who live in Canterlot, I'm going to try my newest one here!

 

 

nocturnal_melody_by_kitsune85-d8wihkk.pn

 

Amid the chatter inside the Happy Bean Cafe, a haunting tune could be heard out in the street, at first soft but then growing louder as whoever was singing it approached the cafe.

 

"In my fields of paper flowers....

and candy clouds of lullaby,

I lie inside myself for hours,

And watch my purple sky fly over me." 

 

A pony with a very unusual appearance could be seen in the windows as she finished up her song before stepping into the cafe. For a moment she felt nervous being there. After all, what would ponies think about seeing an Aerion like her at night. It wasn't like she saw many here in Canterlot. But to her relief there were no whispers or scared looks, so she ordered a hot chocolate and sat down at a table along the edge of the shop, her eyes looking at door to see who would appear while writing down the lyrics and notes for a new song. Her attempts were silenced by hearing a very animated pony talk about something he was very passionate about. But suddenly his voice was cut off as the door opened and in walked two ponies. Although the blue unicorn looked interesting, perhaps somepony she'd like to meet, it was the other that made her eyes go wide. 

 

"Princess Luna?!" she said more in surprise like this was some elaborate dream her mind concocted. Just to be certain she took her quill and gave her foreleg a little poke.

 

"Ouch! Wait...if this isn't a dream then the Princess is here."

 

She immediately became nervous at seeing the Princess of Night, somepony who among the Aerion was considered very important. How should she introduce herself to her? She was not the shy type, but why was it so hard now to simply say hello? 

 

In case you're wondering what Nocturne sounds like, she sings like Amy Lee from Evanescence. 

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Nova Burst was a unicorn who rarely spent time in heavily populated areas because he was worried of what his uncontrolled surges could cause. Natural disasters could even be a possibility later down the line, but he doubted the surges would really get that strong.  Hopefully he would be able to control the power of his horn to some level and prevent such accidents from ever happening to anyone. Energy built in his horn as Nova concentrated to the best of his ability. Hopefully this technique with some of the energy of his horn would actually work properly. What he was attempting to do was a short range teleport. Given that he was in Canterlot already perhaps a trip of sorts to the park would be the best to calm his frazzled nerves and help him relax.  Unfortunately for him, the Teleportation went slightly awry and landed him inside the coffee shop known as the Happy Bean.  True the place was called the Happy Bean, but presently Nova was unhappy with himself.   Approaching where the coffee would be ordered, Nova thought about the place he was in. The Happy Bean was a good place and while he was friendly towards most ponies, he didn't know Ice Storm. 

 

"How much for the strongest blend of coffee you have accessible within the store?"   Right now Nova couldn't afford to allow himself to rest. The bursts were even worse when he wasn't conscious, and trying to suppress them. "I'll take a double of it." 

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Luna was content to follow on for the moment - seeing how such a place as the happy bean was a lively little affair even under the darkness of night, she was certainly intrigued to see just who and what kind of ponies were awake during these hours, so long after Celestias sun had set and the world was far more relaxed than it might have otherwise been.

 

The Princess couldn't help but chuckle at the comment from Ice - it was true, the situation was a little unusual to be sure but that couldn't and shouldn't stop either of them from relaxing as friends...and Luna had to admire that Ice was doing a good job of adjusting to such a thing...normally, most ponies would be preoccupied with trying to appease her as a royal, than trying to appeal to her as somepony to understand and to get to know...Celestia too had dealt with such a problem many a time, however, and thus Luna knew that she simply had to deal with it on her own terms. 

 

As politely asked, Luna trotted into the cafe first and was immediately almost swept away with the delightful aroma of coffee and the rather pleasant buzz of ponies currently engaged in conversations and distractions of their own lives, save for a couple who noticed her quickly. Luna knew that it wouldn't take long for her presence to be felt, of course, but that was fine...she didn't desire to disrupt the scene, but if ponies wished to approach her and discuss anything on their minds, she was truly open to doing so.

 

This seemed, to her surprise, to be something that transpired quite immediately with those who did notice her...although, she supposed, there should have been no surprise considering how entirely notable a princess was on any casual scene, let alone making a casual unexpected appearance within a cafe during the night time, which many ponies would naturally, and correctly, associate with her in the first place.

 

" Uh...Greetings, citizens! " the Princess spoke firmly, looking around at the denizens who seemed to be all too willing to get themselves noticed - truly, she wished to do all she could to pay attention to all of them, but with such immediate crowdings and calling of her name, she found herself a little overwhelemed right off the bat. " Yes, it is I, your Princess of the Night, here to...uh...partake in a mug of your finest coffee! " - she manages to at least hold herself together, trying to preserve the usual external calmness that she had seen her own sister pull off so expertly so many times before. " Once I have, ah, settled down with something to drink, please feel free to converse at your leisure, I desire to make acquaintence with you all this night! "

 

Luna trotted towards a table that seemed quite deserted, and gestured for Icy to join her - the young mare being the first of Lunas 'friends' to be made this evening, and hopefully not necessarily the last.

Still, there was no true way of telling just how the night would go, and seeing the mixed characters inhabiting the cafe...Luna was still a little apprehensive about how she should approach the situation somewhat!

 

At least it had started fairly okay, right? She had that going for her!

Edited by Robikku Pegasus
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Just as the heavenly bodies of the sky had a physical gravity, so the heavenly bodies of their directing Princesses had a social gravity, drawing others near to them into a kind of orbit around them.  While it might be considered insulting to insinuate that Luna was the lesser of the two sisters, she certainly had less force in her pull, only attracting a few to her, rather than the whole shop, as Celestia might have.  On the other hoof, not having to deal with everypony at once would enable her to engage with each on a more personal level, which is what she would have wanted anyway.  So no biggie!

 

For his part, Earth Writer felt no reluctance to leave the debate, even though he was winning, to refill his coffee cup and take a seat nearer to the Princess of the Moon.  While Luna was getting her drink, Earth decided to say hello to Ice Storm.  "How've you been?  Haven't seen you since that fracas up in the Crystal Empire."  It had been that attack which had formed the nucleus of the debate the mare had caught him in.  What policy should Equestria take towards the caribou?  "It's good to be home, eh?"  That remark, at any rate, was not likely to cause an argument!

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When they got into the Cafe, it didn't take long for any of the ponies in the room to catch on who had just walked in. One of them, a journalist that she remembered from the Crystal Empire. When she first met him after what happened during the events of the empire, she didn't trust him a whole lot. At the time, she felt completely justified in her wary approach of him considering that he himself was a journalist and she knew how often times news writers often expanded things or bent what happened to shed either a negative light on one thing, or a positive light on something else. However she was happy to have read his article on the matter to find that he had done a much better job than most she had seen in keeping the facts correct. There were a few embellishments but more-so on the fact that there were other Caribou that came to help with the clean up and focused on the good side of the creatures rather than the side that had come to attack them. She was very pleased about that.

 

She approached him while Luna went to get her own drink and nodded as Luna came back and patted the seat next to her. Ice Storm smiled and quickly took the advantage to sit next to her as she responded. "Well, yes. It is good to be back home, I must say. As it is probably obvious with the bandages, I'm still in a recovery process. It's mostly healed but if I move the wrong way I can re-open parts of it so I keep it wrapped with the salve that I was given from the Empire. Hopefully it doesn't remain too much longer. How about yourself? Come across anymore stories?" she replied as Luna addressed he ponies that were here and invited them to join the two of them. She gave a soft smile to her. "So Luna, what kind of coffee would you like? It's on me tonight," she smiled wondering if anypony else would take the hint on her addressing Luna simply as such.

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