Ciraxis

Un-Greasing the Motor [Closed: Pretzy, Tacobob]

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It has been a long time - almost a decade - since Squall was in Aquelia Capital City. The city changed little since his last visit, still filled with factories and workshops and being nightmare to navigate for non-fliers.

Well helping friends required a few sacrifices, and besides, Swift had doubted that he...or rather THEY will have much to do with city center at all. No, outskirts will do just fine for the hops they will put her through...and yet...

 

If he was to fulfill what he promised, Squall needed help. Swordpony didn't had much bigger experience with being a drill sergeant then himself. Even the lessons he was giving Flux and Spring were not comparable for him to do the job himself. No, that called for the hoof of an expert.

 

What better help with this then his beloved? Fire Walker was very, very good in getting REA recruits into shape, and it was exactly what they needed right now. So it happened that both he and Fire Walker had a whole month and half for themselves, the time that they planned to spent on their long postponed vacation. But before that, they took around a week from their time-frame for a very special assignment.

Right now Swift Squall was on his way to the airport, to pick up a crimson mare. He himself arrived a day earlier to set the ground for the surprise they had for Squall's friend.  Noblepony hoped Moto brought spare clothes with her from the manor. Seeing what they were going to do, they going to change a LOT.

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As Fire Walker waited patiently for her fiancé to pick her up at the airport,she thought back to all what had happened the previous days.
 
After finishing a rather lengthy assignment in the rather murky Fillydelphian underground, she dropped her armor off at the R.E.A smithy to have cleaned and repaired. This gave her enough time for a hot bath and to hopefully grab enough clothing for the trip to the griffon lands. Thankfully, Swift's trusted butler, Oak Branch had already prepared several fully packed suitcases. Did she even own enough clothing to fit in all of this luggage? She would soon find out, and even if this wasn't enough, she lived in a world where public nudity was not only acceptable, it was the norm! Before she could even lift one hoof up to scoop up a suitcase, a small squad of well dressed young stallions were at her side, helping her to a taxi. Her luggage was quickly loaded  and away they went!
 
It had been years since she had last stepped hoof in an air-ship. Her last 'adventure in the air' had the mare, along with her friends, who had been hired by Prince Blueblood to lead an expedition to the land of the Unyasi. During their trip, they had been attacked by an gang of air pirates, which they were able to drive off, thanks to the bravery of her compaions and the aid of an former teacher of hers. And while the swashbuckling took her breath away, the red mare longed for a simple voyage. She acquired a cheap ticket through the R.E.A and planned on curling up with a good book during the trip. She was only one pony and did not need luxury and an oversized room to relax. Wondering where she was going to stay, the curious mare glanced at her ticket. This was not the one she had purchased. Oh Geez. This was for an 'Crystal Serenity Crystal Suite'.  That sneaky stallion switched her ticket!
 
The voyage had gone along quite swimmingly. There had been no pirate attacks. They did have a spa that employed some griffon masseuses who were very skilled in their jobs. Nobody tried firing cannons at their main deck. Her room was probably bigger than her parent's place in Ponyville. And while the entertainment and dining were out of this world, she could not help but feel a little lonely during the trip. It seemed just about everyone on board was a couple. Thankfully, she at least had a really good book to read.
 
A few days of luxury came to an end as the air-ship landed. And after her bags were gathered up, she was promptly deposited at the airport's waiting area. Or as her section was called, 'The Crystal Serenity Crystal Vestibule'. She would wait for her 'sweet patootie' to arrive and pick her up, while receiving a full hooficure. As she sighed, peacefully to herself, something caused her ears to twitch...
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A certain pony, having grown notable for her perpetual frown among the more tech savvy of Talonopolis had only now disembarked off a silverbeak owned Airship. Her coat was a dulled shade of brown and her mane done up in Dreadlocks. It'd been only a few weeks since she'd returned home from her temporary stay in Equestria. She'd gained quite a few boons from it at least: A new assistant, a new colleague, knowledge that the mass teleport drive could in fact work. All in all, not a bad trip. After all that had happened there she was still conflicted somehow. Going back to that land that had held those inconvenient memories left her... un-balanced. Like her new assistant said: She needed to get out more. Locking herself up in her workshop had resulted in her producing more than her fair share of innovations for her family, but it let her with no back up in case she messed up as royally as she had in Ponyville.

 

Still lost in her thoughts, Bevel sat herself down on a bench: failing to notice the red pegasus at her side. "At zhis rate I may 'ave to start writing to zhe uld magic school culleagues." Her tone drifting to her native accent as she spoke to herself. Feeling strangely... in proximity to something, those yellow eyes slowly rotated and laid upon Fire Walker. "... Oh..." The unicorn pulled herself up and kneeled forward slightly, "Pardon... I did not mean to take zhis seat so brazenly. You are waiting for zomeone?"

 

 

 

 

 

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"She would be waiting...for me." a male voice answered the question in lieu of Fire. Sure enough, Swift Squall was approaching from the opposite end of the waiting area. How he got there despite lack of available door was anypony guess.

Squall was a Squall-y as he ever was, the only unusual thing being the noticeable stubble. Apparently stallion wasn't shaving for few days.

"Hello My Meteor." he greeted his fiancée, before gifting her with passionate wet kiss.

"I hope you didn't had to wait long. Or that you made for that ticket swap. We both know you would never accept it otherwise." he lampshaded "From where I was standing, you deserved to have some reward for spending a few days searching through the sewers." Squall further explained himself. "And besides, I can see it's not like you aren't enjoying the benefits..." he smiled towards the mare that was giving Fire the hooficure who responded with the same.

 

"And hello to you too Bevel." noblepony welcomed dreadlocks sporting mare. "To be honest, I wasn't expecting just yet. A day or two from now yes, but....Well, I guess it's only for the better. Yes, we have so much more time thanks to that...." he mused while walking to the side. The way he rubbed his chin made it clear that unicorn was plotting something.

" Catchéng up wiv ze 'omeland, waire you? Ai couldn't 'élp but notice." Squall added, while showing off his own accent. It was clear that he was no stranger when it come to Prench either.

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A familiar voice snapped the red mare out of her daze just as the beautician was finished with her hooficure. "Wonderful job my dear." She hoofed over a proper tip before turning her attention to...
 
"Miss Bevel." Holy smokes! If she were a paranoid sort, Fire Walker would assume the mare was stalking her as this was not the first or even second time they ran into each other in such a random place. The last time they met, it was rather strange as the mare spent part of the time actively ignoring her. And did she always speak with that Prench accent? She did not recall her speaking that way when they were with Princess Twilight.  "No, don't worry. You're fine. I'm just waiting for my fiancé to pick me up."
 
The well dressed young mare, who had just finished making the young officer's hooves 'booty-full', spoke up, "Would you caré fair an 'ooficuré, mon dair?", she also spoke with a strong Prench accent.
 
"I'd say go for it.", Fire Walker gave the unicorn a wink as she slid her shoes back on, "Miss Jolis Sabots is a godsend. I just wish I had her after the mess I dealt with in Fillydelphia.", she gave a quick little shiver, "And besides, my ticket covers two of these things and you're just in the right spot for it."
 
"You aré too kind Lady Fiyairé Walkair!", the beautician gushed as she waited to hear if the inventor wanted an 'Crystal Serenity Crystal Vestibule Crystal Hooficure'.
 
While this was happening, the mare's fiancé snuck a quick and rather bristly kiss upon the mare. While it was probably not a kiss she would normally receive from the pony in public, she knew he probably missed her a bit, so it did not bother her. But ANOTHER Prench accent? With three ponies getting all 'Prenchy' on her, it almost felt like she was in Prance. Only if she had closed her eyes and had a clogged snout. Those skies outside belonged to a city full of factories, not Châteaus and Grand Palais'. One thing made her ears perk up. Swift Squall KNEW Bevel Gear? When did this happen?
 
"Wait a second? You know each other?" She asked the pair of ponies, "We do live in a small world after all."
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The mare paused a moment when the pony getting her hooficure knew her name, "Oh... Oh! My apologies... we were in a group togezher with zhat Equestrian princess not too long ago, right?" The mare sighed and rubbed a hoof her temple. All that time in Ponyville must have been messing with her head. That whole birthday party thing back there was still just a big blur in her mind. All she knew was that after that event suddenly some ponies came by to actually speak to her in her stranded airship... Mon Dieu, that was a pain in the flank to deal with. That one rainbow maned mare stopped by afterwards to check up on her and instead, Bevel just pretended she wasn't home.

 

Bevel looked to the other prench pony offering the hooficure. How long had it been since she'd had one?... long enough that she'd forgotten. Well. She had offered and it would be rude to just refuse. "Very well, but I am sure zhat my hooves are beyond saveng." She sighted and took a seat on the chair.

 

Once in her seat, Bevel's eyes bounced back and forth between the two. Wheels beginning to click in her head, "You two are... to be married? Strange I never thought you the type for zhat, Monsieur Squall." A flinch shook her seat as Miss Sabots began her work, the subject not being used to the sensation at all. "Pardon." She said somewhat regretfully down to the mare at her hooves, "You husband to be pays me to make 'im devices for his own ends. It was an agreement we decided after both catcheng a match in that caribou arena." At squall's query she shook her head, "More like trapped in ze 'omeland. A newly made device on my ship hit a snag and I wound up in Ponyville... It was... an interesting trip at zhe  very least."

 

 

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"You may be in need for revisit, after a week." Squall mused as Miss Jolis started to work over Bevel's hooves. "That said, it will be probably my fault, so I will cover expense of that." he added, but didn't elaborated any further.

 

"Well my love, it's not the world that is tiny." noblepony started after hearing Fire's astonishment. "Rather, we have tendency to stick to beaten tracks. Only when need arises, we become the trailblazers." Swift explained his point of view.

 

"Yes, we are." Squall said. The though about what was to come made him give a smile that seemed to radiate with a warmth. "Although I am curious..... what exactly led you to such impression Gears?" he inquired. When Bevel mentioned how the two of them met, Squall grimaced. That was the part after his 'death' that he didn't really mentioned to Fire, being sure that she would not approve. Well cat's was out of the bag now - it was more then certain that he will get the earful from the crimson mare, and probably be exiled to the couch for the week too!

"That would be....correct." Swift said with heavy sight. At the same time unicorn made a mental checklist to 'accidentally' say something embarrassing about Gear's as well.

"Previously I used a help of certain old inventor from Filly. Poor old stallion was a genius when it came to gadgetry but....well, had some missing pieces in his faculties. He passed away somewhere before.....that stuff at Crystal Empire. Since then I didn't had anyone skilled enough to provide me with necessary gear until I met...well...Gear." swordpony explained. He just hoped Fire would not ask about what he was doing at the Arena in the Whitescar. He really despised the couch.

 

"Speaking of necessaries....." Squall added before giving Bevel a look-over, before pulling out a photo for compassion.

"Hmmmm it could be worse..." he mused as his gaze shifted from Bevel, to a photo, to a Bevel again "...slight better then expected, but still...." noblepony walked around the unicorn mare as if he was examining her. Unexpectedly, shefound her stomatch poked with a pommel of his weapon. Squall glared as the pudge that was growing over those weeks since return from Ponyville, moved at the contact with the metal hilt.

"....I see......We probably will have to start with fridge first." Swift mused to himself, still frustratingly enigmatic.

 

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“Yep.”, the mare could not help but smile even more, “Princess Twilight, Alicorn Of Friendship.” Holy smokes that did not sound very impressive when spoke out-loud!  Princess Celestia was the Alicorn of the Sun. Princess Luna was the Alicorn of the Moon, and according to a friend of hers, also the Alicorn of dreams. Princess Cadance was the Alicorn of love. Poor Twilight got the short end of the Alicorn stick. 'Princess Of Friendship' sounded like an fake job title one would give to an 'greeter' on an airship. Or maybe a spokespony. "And also that street birthday party in Ponyville. That was er.", she stammered, "Rather unique." Birthday parties usually dropped the whole balloon and 'bounce house' vibe before high school, but Pinkie Pie's parties tended to have more of an child-like tone to them. Less Zap Apple Sangria and more 'Pink Pony Party Punch'.
 
Fire Walker shook her head, "Pffft." she added, "I don't see anything wrong with them, but they always say you should visit the spa at least once a month.", she held one of her front hooves up and admired the shine. "There's this incredible little place in Ponyville I like to stop at when visiting my folks. Full service." It was so bizarre seeing this grand spa in the middle of what was basically a farming village. Still, they all worked really hard there, so a nice day in a great big pot of hot, bubbling water made for a good time.
 
An arena? In this day and age? Fighting to defend your family, friends and country. That was good. Fighting for entertainment? Unless it was an theatric 'play-fight' where nopony got hurt, an arena would be beyond barbaric! Thankfully, these things did not exist in Equestria. And if they did, she would make sure they were all shut down. Thankfully, she knew her beloved would not be involved in such infantile activities.
 
"Thankfully you found Bevel. I doubt there's nopony out there that can do what she can...er..", she turned to see what the unicorn was doing...Actually, what was he doing? "Swift? Dear? Please don't poke Miss Bevel with your sword." The brilliant inventor looked like she put on a little extra poundage since they last met, but that was nothing she should concern herself with
 
Unless....
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"Well, She did refer to you as her 'Fiance'. zhat usually means that you two are to be married, Doesn't eet?"  The prenchpony winced at the hooficure, "Hurts slightly... certainly has been a while."  It really had been. For the most part, Bevel had been just focusing on her work and pleasing the Silverbeaks and Aunt Gwynne. Having trapped herself in Equestria without any prior notice about the teleportation drive's test and minimal clues that could be used to tell where she went was most definitely not going to go well. She could only hope that her explanation of what happened and the 'success' of the teleport drive would be enough to soothe the tempers of some surely unhappy birdlions.

 

While bevel dwelled on her thoughts, Squall had apparently taken up an inspection of her physique. A poke to her stomach jarred her from the depths of her pondering long enough to arch a brow at the stallion nudging her gut with the pommel of his sword. The dreadheaded mare looked to the stallion with a bemused expression that slowly changed into one of irritation. thankfully,  Fire spoke up about it. 

 

"Zhank you, Manquer Walker. I've yet to fully understand your beloved's ... eccentricities." 

 

She didn't need to be reminded about the small amount of weight she'd put on. With what happened in Ponyville with the birthday party she'd been a part of, she wouldn't be surprised if she'd make a right plot of herself  by gorging on cake, cotton candy, ice cream, all those foalish pursuits. "I have been on my workbench most of the time in Ponyville. After that whole birthday event I've resolved never to let myself look so disgustingly juvenile again. ... and really? Once a month? I haven't been in a spa since--... actually I've never been to a spa at all." She gave a shrug towards Fire, "I've just never found the time."

 

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"Well, yes I did, and yes, that is correct. But that's not what I've been asking about. Why did you thought that I am ' Not le taype to marry.' Bevel?" noblepony pressed further, with more showing of his Prench accent when imitating Bevel.

Stallion however rose an eyebrow at certain mention that Fire made.

"Street.....birthday party?" Squall said, expressing his bewilderment. ".......Well I guess Ponyville keeps working hard to maintain it's reputation." he mused before turning to his beloved.

"Moto, Love. If you father wouldn't be called to back to service despite his wishes, I would say that Ponyville is very poor choice of place for retirement."

Thank Harmony that Fire didn't wished for him to elaborate further about the Arena. Honestly that would  take a lot for his, to explain himself from this one.

"You are from the military Fire. Of course you get the service usually reserved for regular clients. Although I guess at this point you are one yourself." Swift pointed out.

 

"You one to talk Bevel." Swift said withe a scoff, clearly amused with Gear's response to his Beloved words. "And don't worry Dear, I was done with this part anyway." Squall said, walking two steps aside, only to kneel next to deadlock sporting mare - this time, to judge her hind legs apparently. Thankfully without any additional poking.

"You know Gears...you are a real winner at the gene pool. If only you wouldn't be glued to that lab of yours, you could become a real star-class athlete. Although at this point its too late for that I guess." swordstallion observed. "A week is not a lot of time, but if we focus enough, we can get at least part of this potential to surface." he continued while standing up. Swift reached towards inside of his duster, and the next moment she knew it, Fire was now sporting a whistle around her neck, and cap on top of her head.

"I can schedule exercises, training equipment and meals, but I am still learner myself when it comes to this 'motivating' thing. I guess it was just too long since my own days in the army." swordpony explained, at least spilling some beans about reasons for his - and in turn also Fire's - presence. However instead of elaborating further, Squall opted instead to comment in regards of Bevels remark about the birthday party she was present at.

"A vow that is both unhealthy and in the end futile. There will be time Bevel, when you will feel so much joy, that you will wish to tell the whole world about it." Squall said, before giving his fiancée a look of both devotion and affection. "You may be a scientist wishing to judge things only by logic, but you are also being of flesh and blood. Emotions can be suppressed with reason, Bevel. But you must give in to them at times or they will eat you alive." Squall said while his gaze became unfocused he started at his own raised hoof. It seems noblestallion was talking from experience.

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The red mare nodded her head as Swift Squall confirmed their upcoming marriage. Even now, it was so strange to even imagine she would be tying the knot soon.  "One of the residents was having a birthday, so Pinkie Pie made it an event for the entire town. Little Wind and I went", she could not help but smile as she remembered the party. "There was carnival rides, an oversized bounce-castle and lots of food. The usuals were there and it all made for a rather pleasant, day-time party." Fire Walker could not help but chuckle as the inventor mentioned Swift's  eccentricities.
 
"Only makes me love him even more.", she managed to give him a quick peck on his cheek, "My Swifty is never boring. And while every little girl dreams about marrying a prince, I always wanted somepony who keeps things fresh and exciting, so I guess I got both wishes."
 
The officer nodded her head as Bevel spoke, "I was so distracted with Lady Applejack and Fluttershy, I actually ended up eating very little.", the mare hated to have missed a chance for free food!, "I did take a few pieces of cake home with me and Wind Walker ended up getting rather sick after stuffing herself with sweats and riding the 'spinner'. Still, you do remind me of an old friend of mine.", her tone shifted rather drastically, "She went through a bit of unpleasantness and broke up with her boyfriend. Ended up burying herself in her work. Which was not healthy.", she sighed, "I've heard about all the brilliant work you've done, from that crazy flying machine you had down to an underwater submerging ship. All beyond incredible, but you should still take a little time from your busy schedule to relax and maybe spoil yourself a little. You deserve it."
 
Fire took the whistle. Oh right. Looks like they were going to help the inventor get back into shape before she ends up with diabetes. "So, what's the plan? I really hate lecturing another adult. It's not me." After it found its away around her neck, the mare tested her whistle out. "We should make it fun. You have your magic.", she gave the unicorn stallion a slight 'boop' on his horn. "During the week of Nightmare Night, Miss Ilinalta and I did a fun little 'zombie run' for the recruits.  Not only did we have the illusionary 'zombies' chase the newbies for a 'fun run', we also had a team-building exercise where the blue-heads had to build an proper and secure 'base' that could withstand an 'zombie' assault. This ended with a surprise assault by 'Nightmare Moon'.",
 
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"... My aunt in Equestria would 'ave mixed feelings on that remark, I assure you." She sighed softly while she reflected on her odd lineage in her head, "But really? My gene pool? You're starteng to sound like the lead villain in one 'orror novel I read... somezhing about a unicorn noblepony swapping minds with earth ponies and pegasi." She narrowed her eyes at the stallion momentarily, "Now that I think about eet... you do look a bit 'ow zhat pony was described."at the ends of her mouth there seemed a faint curl... was that a smile? curious. 

 

That expression soon faded as she winced again from the hooficure, "I don't want to sound ungrateful.... but 'ow much longer will this 'ooficur-- ow! um... take?" She asked the pony at her hooves before looking back up to Squall, "I'm sure I can handle equipment and eat fairly well. Motivation... perhaps it could improve, but I -do- have it. As for the joy Well I can safely say zhat that part should stay behind me... in the past when I first came to Aquellia I was far too excitable to be respectable when I was a filly. Aunt Gwynne can attest to zhat. When I was in Ponyville, the best comparison I could make between my younger self would be... zhat pink pony at the p-- Ah! Yes, Pinkie Pie. Zhat was 'er name."  Bevel smiled slightly to Fire, "Zhank you or zhe reminder."

 

despite not wanting to be phased by Fire's story, Bevel's mind did wander along the track o the train of thoughts the red pegasus' words laid down. A mental image of her sitting all alone at a desk in a dark room popping into her mind which she willed away with a furrowed brow. She let out a soft sigh and looked back up to the two, "I relent... you both may have a point... I'm just not too sure I recall how to spoil myself or do anyzhing beyond my work."

 

 

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Swift could only rise an eyebrow when Bevel started to describe one of the books she read. "This sound like terribly unnecessary and overly complicated way to put yourself into horrible disadvantage." he pointed out. "Please tell me that it's not one of Foxtrot novels.......It is one of the the Foxtrot novels, isn't it?" Squall said deflated. Knowing his friend, the physical description of the novel's villain was not coincidental. Next time he will see his friend, the writer is going to get an earful!

"Still, I am surprised you are into that kind of literature. What, was 'The Scientific Monthly' and 'Ponytional Geographic' not enough?" noblpony inquired in a snarky way.

 

"But choice of lecture aside, you aunt she would probably wouldn't stop at just being vocal. The one from Fetloch. Heh, come to think of it, aside from Colonel Pummel she was the only other officer that could get me straighten up in attention." Squall recalled, remembering Captain Star Breezer back from his days in Honor Guard training. What Swift didn'tmention was that she was also the only one who made him afraid.

"Still though, while we at your aunt - she and her daughter prove my words. I mean, you saw your cousin, right? She's taller then me, and build like a brick house. I not what you would call scrawny, but compared to her, I as well might be." Squall said with a bemused look,

"She is marefriend of Blue if I remember...what was her name again? Shard Crusader?" he continued, while rubbing his temple to stir his memory.

 

Swordstallion couldn't help but to smile (and blush) when Fire spoke about relationship. Good harmony, when she poke like this he could listen to hear for hours.

"W-well technically I am a Count. But I am also related to Blueblood. We had last common ancestor 450 years ago. And since he is descendant from Platinas dynasty...well that makes me of royal blood as well. For all that its worth I guess." Swift explained. "I think Presteza is of the descent too, from her mother side. It never came up when we talked, but I believe I saw it on Platinas genealogical tree once. That would mean she's related to both me and Blue as well - although as distantly as I am to him."

 

After finishing his musing about blood relations, Squall addressed Fire.

"Sweetheart, you say that, but it doesn't change the fact you are good at it when you focus." noblestallion said to his fiancée. "I heard you when I brought you lunch last Thursday. The earful you gave to those recruits seemed quite effective" he answered to the unspoken question. The perks of working in the same city!

"Besides we don't need a lecture, only motivation as Bevel said. And so, you will provide some motivational yelling!" Swift said in a chirpy tone.

 

"Well I guess that mean it's up to us to help you remember." Squall mused. But while he sounded neutral, inside he was boiling. Bevel, being comparable to Pinkie Pie in her younger years?! Noblestallion gritted teeth as his thought turned towards Aquelian society. The happy filly, grind slowly by her surroundings, and burdened by expectations and pressure from her adopted family - until almost nothing remained from the jolly pony she was before. All so she could 'fit in'.

"......I guess this place was never home for you." Squall added to himself, under his breath.

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"Just a fu mairé minutés, madamé. Ai just need to finish wiv lé pulish and you weehl bé done.", the beautician had tried her very best not to be involved in the conversation. It was just so darn weird! Rich ponies! They so crazy!
 
 
Fire Walker could not help but imagine an filly Bevel Gear bouncing around town with a goofy smile on her face like a certain manic pixie dream pony they both knew. "Yeah, we all have our phases.", she shook her head, "Went from a sad little filly who could barely walk, to a rather nasty little bully to the happy solider I am now.", she watched as the the inventor received an good hoof-shining, "Still, even when you change, there's always a little bit left over from your past self. When I get hurt, like back in the Crystal Empire, I can be an incredible wimp. And when I lose my temper.", she nodded at the unicorn stallion, "I can get really nasty. Thankfully, this is a very rare event."
 
The mare placed a front hoof on her chin, "Hmmm.", she pondered, "I usually just hang out with the girls when I have the time. Do a little Canterlot bar hoping...Not much of a dancer, so you probably won't see me in the clubs." Maybe it was time to take lessons. She was going to be joining high society soon! She would have to learn where the rain was and if it stayed mainly in the planes.  Even might become famous, proper and prim. Might want to read a bit more so she did not look so dim. And the clothes!
 
"Sometimes I hit the beach.", Fire Walker shook away what was probably a musical that was starting to form in her head, "I enjoy just chilling out on a towel with a good book. Just don't go on weekends do during school holidays." She also did not minding watching the cute stallions as they flopped around in their bathing suits. "Even just taking an extended bubble bath would help....And there's always clever ponies, like yourself, who end up having an brilliant idea just pop in their head, or even a solution to their greatest problem while relaxing. Wasn't it Archimaredes that did that?"
 
"General Pummel.", she corrected her favorite stallion, "They actually promoted that." Whoops! It was very unprofessional to badmouth an superior officer. Even that nasty old mummy with the tender sweetness of a seasick crocodile deserved respect.  "Fine, outstanding gentle-colt. And that's Star Crusader. A mare that is practically the perfect officer in everyway. I have served at her side in the past and she is utterly brilliant, bold and brave."
 
She was starting to stray from the subject. Bevel Gear. "So, Swifty, do we have any sort of agenda planed?"
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"Well I can't very well spoil it for you if it is... either way, there are times when my brain needs a break. I used to read a lot of picaresque fiction back when I was younger before the move." The mare gav another flinch as the beautician worked away at her hooves, "And It's Star Crusader, actually." The mare reached looked to Fire and squall again, "So you two will help me get into better shape?... I suppose it couldn't hurt to try." 

 

Bevel's feelings on Aquellia were still somewhat mixed. Regardless of how things turned out changing her, the fact couldn't be ignored that this place had been home for her. The unicorn had thrived of the generosity of these griffins for so long, to voice any overt criticism of them just would make her feel as if she were a pathetic ingrate. Gwynne had been kind enough to take her in after the passing of Bevel's parents. The older griffoness had worked hard to temper and shape her into the kind of mare who could survive and prosper among the furred and feathered inhabitants in Talonopolis. 

 

"Quite zhe contrary, I'm still attached to zhis place. It was my aunt Gwynne who raised me here, I cannot deny her charity."

 

Fire walker's description of her own past brought a bit of a smile to the normally dour unicorn's lips, "You think you can be nasty? You should see me when I'm low on sleep. Beaches?... I haven't been to one of those in years either. Zhere's so much I've not done that I used to enjoy... It's strange now that I think about it."

 

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"Yes, yes Star Crusader." Squall quickly agreed with Bevel's and Fire's corrections with a wave of his hoof. Unicorn couldn't help but to give a disapproving look towards the inventor mare, after hearing her next phrase.

"Try? Gears, I didn't haul myself all this way for mere 'try'. When I was asked to help erase the belly cushion of yours and I said 'Yes' I jolly well meant it! By the end of the week I will see you doing push-ups and back-flips for days. Maybe we can give you a six-pack if we work hard enough." noblepony promised.

 

Squall couldn't help but chuckle when Fire mentioned her lack of dancing skills. "Well then, I guess I already know what we will be doing a week from now." he said in amusement before turning to Bevel. "She really loves beaches as you can tell. I myself am a rough weather pony, prefer to do some kata in quite of my private gym. My Moto here on the other prefers to lounge while sipping some cocktail. She keeps poking me about our trip to Gallopocus, but every time we plan to, something inevitably pops up and we have to go and deal with it. At this point we figured out it would be better to save it for the honeymoon." he confessed.

"Dear, you saying that like you haven't had one in forever, but we have a jacuzzi and pool in home. An indoor one!" Swift replied to Fire's expression of fondness for bubble baths. "You barely use shower anymore."

 

"Moto, don't pretend to like him. I know what you think but not everypony could be like your father." noblepony reminded his fiancée.The general was a jobsworth, one who pretty much sacrificed his family life for his career. And since his Love came from bloodline with heavy military traditions as well, she saw and experienced first-hoof that one could have the cake and eat it too when it came to that. As such it was obvious from where Fire's distaste for Pummel came from.

 

Of course the further talk about the General, because Bevel reply to Squall's earlier musings made him quite roused. It hit a scar over an old wound, one that has long since mended, but was not forgotten.

"Home." he started with emphasis. "...Is a place that accepts you as YOU ARE. Faults and all. Not one throws away parts of you it doesn't like simply because they wouldn't be convenient! Tell me Gears, how often your Aunt have said she loves you, that she missed you when you came 'home' from your trips?!" he asked before taking a deep breath. When he spoke again his voice was much softer.

"I have a certain friend Bevel. She....She grew up and belonged to a horrible and dark place, and  during her stay She was nothing more but a cog in the machine. But worst of all, She didn't knew it was that way. At least until they threw Her away, after she 'failed' Her assignment. Only after that, She could get a perspective on her past life, one that allowed Her to build a place of Her own. They may raised Her, and taught  Her everything that She knew until Her exile, but it never made this place Her home. Do you know what am I trying to say?"

 

Swift took another deep breath after Fire's question about how they should proceed.

"Well I already brought training clothes..." he looked behind on all the heavy luggage he hauled. "We need to set the schedule. Also strick diet for a week. Carbohydrates early in the day and proteins for further meals. Soy, peas, nuts, beans. Also iron from artichokes, spinach and raisins. Let's see...yo may get calcium from spinach as well, but let's add milk and almonds to that. Also pumpkin and sesame seeds for zinc..." swordstallion rubbed his chin for a moment before turning to Bevel.

"I will need your measurements and weigh as well. And don't look at me like that. I have to make sure to buy the proper gear. While You and Fire will be doing some warm-up today, I will go on the shopping spree for the training equipment. We can't have you try to yank the first barbell you find, we need to much the stuff suited to your size and current build."

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“We’re going to help you get back into shape.”, the Pegasus pony added. She had seen the mare in the past and remembered that Bevel was in fact in decent shape. Maybe not for a Wonderbolt, but she had the look of an brainy adventurer. Not so much a Daring Do, but maybe one of her temporary partners. The one that did not end up getting killed by the second chapter. Those were the ones who DARED to betray the heroic archeologist just for a bit or two. They usually ended up falling into some deadly trap that was meant for the hero.“You’ve probably just fallen into a bad diet. When I was in officer school, everypony ate those horrible instant noodles, mostly to avoid the nasty food they served in the mess hall. However, unlike the mess hall food that was designed to be filling and nutritious, the noodles were nothing but sodium, calories and saturated fat." She still could not believe she ate that stuff. And each had its own 'flavor' but they were just kidding themselves. They all tasted like salty noodles.
 
"Last time I was at a beach, we were nearly eaten by an very large monster who also threw an formally sunken ship at us." Nothing like an ancient sea-beast to ruin a day of sand, surf and suds. Thankfully, the better resorts at the Gallopocus Islands had ponies who made sure nothing like that got too close to the beaches. Thank goodness for the 'Secret Monster Intelligence League of Equestria'!  "Thankfully, that's usually a rare thing. So mostly the worst that can happen is too much sand in your trunks or sunburns." Okay, maybe drowning is on that list, but she did not want to get too dark.
 
"Eh.", she shrugged her shoulders, "That's basically me when I'm not working.", she added, "I do enjoy a good break every so often, but I still do manage my morning run, and a mid-afternoon fly. As for showers.", the mare playfully stuck her tounge out at the stallion, "When I'm 'on the clock', it's always showers. Usually shared and the water is typically cold. And a good hot bath is the idea way to handle heat therapy. It helps to warm up aching muscles and promote better blood flow and circulation."
 
After what seemed like forever, Bevel's beautician had finished with her hooves, "Zeré you go, all finishéd now.", she was rather pleased with her work, "Now yur 'ooves are both vairy shiny and strong!" Sure enough, the mare could probably see her reflection in them.
 
After hoofing over a tip, Fire Walker stood up from her chair, "Guess we better get going then." And just in time! She felt her that her flank was starting to fall asleep....
 
 
 
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