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Hearts of Ice (Closed: Dusty)

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She did not know how to deal with… This. She didn't even move or speak as Glitter touched her face. She didn’t know what to do. What to say. She let out a breath she didn't even know she was holding when the mare slipped back in to sleep. Moving the mare back down she placed an ear on Glitters chest… still beating. Still strong. All that matters. Backing away from the mare Tempest stumbled to the wall of the cave and placed her head on the cold stone. She felt… dizzy. Sick to her stomach even as she thinks about… everything. 

 

‘We're gonna match though.’ What good was that? That was horrible. All of this was. Glitter… she never… NEVER! Needed to be like Tempest. Tempest was a monster. One born out of anger, hate and a screaming need to feel like she mattered no matter the price. Tempest killed a filly. Tempest killed Fizzy. And Tempest was going to get Glitter killed as well. It's all Tempest was good at. Destroying. 

 

And that fact made her heart drop with a weezing whimper of a cry. She was crying again. For so long she was running from her past and now she can’t. It was laying on the stone floor of a blasted cave with nothing but a monster with hooves forever stained red with the sins against ponykind commented for stuped reasons. 

 

Slumping against the wall of the cave she curled up in a ball as the wolves were howling with laughter. Their mocking echoed in her head. She was foolish. Stuped. Alone. Forever alone. They were her only friends. The only ones that stuck with her. But she didn't want them now. She never wanted them. She wanted to be Fizzy. She wanted to do all of this over again and stop herself. Stop the madness. 

 

With a wheezing cry she dug her face in her front legs to muffle her own screaming. She just wanted them to shut up. To leave her alone. But the howling did not stop. It grew and grew as she felt the hot breath of the wolves on her neck. So close. So very close. All she had to do was give in too it. Be what she knew she really was. A monster. ‘She’d die.’ A small filly says. A filly that refused to die. No matter how much the wolves did try.

 

Pulling herself up she looked at the mare. Alone. Helpless. She can’t leave her. She can’t. So she moved closer, dropping down next to the mare and nuzzling in to glitters mane to wipe away tears. The wolves backed away, their voices cut short as if they feared waking the sleeping mare. “Honor means nothing when war is unfair.” She whispers a song to herself to distract her own mind. “We've come here to battle and return to nowhere. There's blood in these hills from the battles forlorn as kings die like peasants. Wolves in the shadows drag pieces away with no one to mourn the dead. I've got nothing to lose, with no debts left to pay. The gods have not listened as prayers turned to ash.

 

Vengeance igniting the fire in my blood as I follow a path of destruction, by sword and by flame.  Fed to the vultures were friends and good ponies in pursuit of dominion, the game that never ends. I have seen heaven, or some kind of hell, there's no one to save us, all my heroes are dead. The songs of a filly is silent and honor means nothing when life is unfair. I come here to battle and return to nowhere. A cage with no walls for a wolf like me.” She pushed her face in to the mare's chest and shut her eyes. She was so tired.

 

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She woke eyes wide, breath heave with panic from her haunted dreams. Looking around the cave she saw nothing. She was safe. Looking down at Glitter she felt a ping of worry and had to put her ear to the mare's chest again. Still breathing. Standing up she stretched her legs and moved to the mouth of the cave. It was hard to see outside as the wind screamed with a blizzard. Past the cave was just a wall of white. There's no way she can go out in that she'd get lost in a heartbeat. So she walked back to the ashes of the fire… they did not have much wood left. But with what few sticks she can gather in the cave she added them to the flames to keep it going and sat down to warm up as she digs in her saddle bags. Pulling out a pack of cigarettes she takes one in her muzzle and with a spark of magic set it alight. 

 

She sat watching the small fire, feeling its heat shake of the num cold. She’d need too get more firewood if the blizzard slowed down… She saw glitter waking up and greeted her. “Good morning. At least I think it's moreing… We got a nasty blizzard outside.” she says before looking at the saddle bag and digs in it for some food. “Ya, I can do with some food… cooked oats ok?” She asked looking back at the mare. She was extremely happy to see her wake. She wanted to say so much… But the words just did not come.

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"Good morning," She offered a small smile to the mare.

 

Glitter winced as she settled herself into a comfortable sitting position, her wound throbbing. The mare shivered a little, noting the fire was burning low and that there was a blizzard front that was about to pound down on them. She could see the light from outside but it issued from around a rock ledge. No wonder the timber wolves liked to use this cave, it was actually quite cozy. Glitter snuggled down into her blanket as she watched Fizzy. She mare looked, well...worn? Were those tracks on her cheeks? Had she been crying? If she had been there was plenty of reason. What they had just lived through was not exactly a walk in the park. But Glitter somehow knew, she knew Tempest must be battling on the inside. 

 

Glitter went through bouts of that herself. Inner turmoil. Struggle. Demons. She shook her head, she was not about to open that box right now. Her ears perked up at the mention of food. 

 

"Yep! Cooked oats sounds really good!" Her stomach rumbled. When had she last eaten? 

 

She touched her bandages and winced again. She couldn't feel anything beside throbbing underneath the wrappings. Would she be blind in that eye? She hoped not. Being blind in one eye was not opportune for those who lived the outdoor survival lifestyle. But if she was, she was. She'd never take back what she'd done out there. She knew she was throwing her life on the line with what she did. It was worth it. It was for Fizzy. Anything she could do to pay the mare back for past misfortune was worth it. 

 

"Fizzy?" The word came out small. "Could you help me up? I need to use the little filly's room." She laughed lightly calling it that. "I'll stay right outside the mouth of the cave." She spoke the words without think, Tempest was her caretaker right now. 

 

Koda trotted around them, small excited barks issuing from him. The dog was concerned for his master. "It's ok boy, it's ok." She used a quiet voice to soothe him. 

 

"So, we'll get moving after the blizzard?" She questioned the unicorn, trying to start some sort of conversation. 

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“Good, that’s about all we got.” Tempest says after blowing smoke out of her nose. She loved doing that trick as it made her feel like a dragon. She got up and started to look for the oats when she was called for again. She looked over at glitter as the mare talked, then chuckled before walking over and using her head and neck to help left glitters up, then letting the mare lean on her as they gently walked closer to the mouth of the cav. “Hay… Glitter. Can. Can you do something. I hate asking you to do anything. But please don’t call me… The F name. I don’t like it. I really don’t like it. It hurts. Just call me… Temtem. Temy. whatever. Just not the F word.” She asked well they walked, feeling ashamed to even ask it. But she had to do it. Every time Glitter spoke that blasted name it felt like a dagger was being twisted in her chest. It was a dad name for a dead filly and it needed to be kept that way. He can never be that filly again. But she can be something more than Tempest. 

 

 

Leaning her head away from Glitter she let out a huff of smoke. She hated that she had even more vices nowadays. But at least this one made her relaxe. A small window of peace from the howling darkness sitting just out of view but always following her. Ready. Wanting. All for her to slip and allow it inside. That worry fades away in the smoke. For a time. As they reach the opening and the screaming storm outside she keeps looking away from Glitter, but stays by her side to not let the mare fall down. “Well, do what you got to do. I’m not looking.” She says rolling her eyes, even if Glitter can’t see it.

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Glitter leaned heavily onto Fizzy's neck as the other mare helped her up. He legs felt shaky and she was glad that she had requested the assistance. As they took the first few step she got light headed and leaned most of her weight onto the strong frame of the mare beside her. She glanced over, noting the smoke issuing from nostrils and muzzle. It comforted her somehow, seeing Fizzy ease herself with a vice. 

 

Then came the request. It hit her in the gut, deep and raw. Until she called it to mind Glitter hadn't even realized she had been calling her Fizzy. She felt bad, like she didn't care. She hadn't thought that perhaps that part of the past should just stay where it belonged...forgotten in the past. Thought it wasn't forgotten. None of it was. She relived the whole scene on an almost daily if not twice or more daily clock. The path, her friends, the ball, the whole thing. It played on repeat. Far from forgotten. She swallowed and continued towards the cave mouth.

 

A nod.

 

"Ah," She spoke softly. "Yeah, I can do that." She looked away, towards the storm. "Temy." It felt weird but it also felt, well, almost like a name shared between those with deep connections. A nick name that nopony else could get away with. Yet she could. Glitter could call her that. Yeah, it felt ok.

 

They made their way outside and Glitter couldn't help her smile when Temy stated she wasn't looking. Again, she hadn't even thought about that. She'd somehow lost her modesty in all this mess. Temy had just helped her through a state of utter weakness. She could have easily slipped away if the unicorn hadn't been there. 

 

The storm was cold. So cold she felt her bones take on a chill almost instantly. As soon as she was finished she took a step towards the cave. "Brr," The cold felt deeper with her injury. "Let's get back inside." Those oats were sounding really good now.

 

Once she'd settled Glitter sighed as she glanced towards the storm once more. "Well, I guess we found the source of the problem," Focusing on work would settle her mind. "Not sure there's much we can do about it. We'll have to let the surrounding farmers know. At least livestock will be in the barn for the winter. Less chance of that ursa nabbing them." As she spoke she watched Tempest. She could feel what was happening. Her work had been the source of any semblance of stability she had and already she could feel that shifting to Tempest. It was silly of course. Once this was done, Tempest would be on her way.

 

Her heart sank at the thought. She didn't want Tempest to go, ever. 

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before she joined the Storm King's army. She did so many times after. Cooking over an open fire. She can still think back too the first few times. The raw joy of starting a fire and the many, many failed attempts too cook food. Yet she did. She trained herself to cook. To live. Yet for all of that she was alone. Ny her own wishes many times. Yet now she had Glitter laying there, watching her every move. Somehow it felt… like this was the way it was supposed to be. 

 

“If I knew what it was, I’d have taken some TNT.” She says with words dripping with utter hatred for the best. She’d kill it. Without blinking an eye she’d wach it be blown into a red mist. If they even did that… What does a bear made out of stars blow up in to? “Sooner or later it has to be dealt with. It will only get more brave and soon you will have more than missing livestock.” She added looking over at Glitter, eyes forced the still fresh wounds on the mares body. 

 

She pulled her eyes away, shaking her head. “Glitter…” She trailed off soon as she spoke as she gazed in to the fire. She had to say something. “Glitter I… I missed you.” The words felt painful to even say. It was the truth yet it felt like chewing on glass to say it. There was so much missing from it. How can she even explain it? She was just some bucked up mare that can barely function in a social setting. But she can't keep danceing around this.

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Tempest mused on the bear. It was not a contemplative muse, that much was obvious. Glitter knew that ursa would not survive the winter. she could tell by the steel behind the words the unicorn uttered. Glitter didn't contest, the animal had torn her up. Made a mess of her face. But, on the other hoof...it had somehow brought her and Tempest back together. How could something bent on destruction accomplish something that made Glitter's heart feel as it did? The whole thing was a swirling conundrum. But still she knew, Tempest would kill the bear.

 

Then the words came. Simple words but with floods of meaning. She knew it was an effort for the other mare to speak on anything so real. She knew Tempest had worked to lock away Fizzy, her playfulness, her joy. This mare before her lived a metal shell of her own creation. It was more than the mail and leather armor she wore, it was tighter than that. Around her very heart.  But these words had leaked and they came to Glitter's ear haltingly. 

 

Glitter looked on towards her friend. Though it was painful the mare forced herself to move to Tempest's side. There she slumped, down hard on her friend. Back to the ground in front of the fire. She needed to make the move, even though it hurt her physically. The force that moved her was so much stronger. She looked up into Tempest's swirling eyes. 

 

"I missed you too..." She sighed, feeling a wave of feelings wash over her. She found herself wanting to be ever closer to the other unicorn. She also knew this time would end. Wouldn't it? Tempest would want to go on her way after the ursa was dealt with? 

 

"You don't have to leave," She looked away. "If you don't want to."

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As Glitter slumped down next to her Tempest felt her heart sink, she could see the pain in the movement and reached out, placing a foreleg over the mare without thinking. She felt lost as to what to do about this, how too act with Glitter laying down so close looking at her. So Tempest did nothing, just looking down at the mare she cared about and missed for so long. For the briefest of moments she felt younger. Pain free without a care in the world with her best friend. But realty never let her daydream for long. “Glitter… You know I have too. I… We…” She trailed off, the blank cold face of hers twitching as it barely held back the feelings it masked. Every time she tried to speak the words seemed to die before they left her muzzle. She felt helpless and clueless as to what too do. What to say. How many pointless things have she used to fill in this hole? Mares, violence, drinks and so much more. All to fill that deep gash in her soul that she inflicted on herself and blamed others for. And none it worked. 

 

She let out a deep gasp as air rushed in to her lungs, leaving her panting from how long she held her own breath without knowing. It left her sputtering and spitting out her cigarette before she dropped her head down on the cold stone floor and covered it with a leg as the mask shattered. She can’t keep it up any more. All of this was too much. She was miserable, hopeless and aimless. Just spinning in place hoping to never wake up again and face the fact her life was a joke. Worthless. Pointless. She can’t burden glitter with it, how can she? How can she come back after so long and dump this dead pony walking on Glitters doormat. She needed to remember Flizzy, happy and brave. Not Tempest. Not this broken, scared, hopeless mare. Everypony just put up with her. Acted like they enjoyed her out of some pity for the sad state of a mare she was. All she did was destroy. All she can do is destroy.

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For the briefest of moments she could see it. See the life that lay before her. With Tempest. With her best friend. With the mare she loved. They would live together in the outpost. They would trek and wander the frozen wastes, together. Camp in the freezing reaches in the winter and fill their canteens from the icy mountain streams in the summer. They would work together and have a motive to do the work. They would be a strong team. They would be the key that fit each other's locks. 

 

She lay there, with the unicorn's foreleg over her withers. She felt protected then. Like she hadn't in so long. Like she hadn't ever. Tempest was strong in body though she had her weaknesses. Of that Glitter was sure. And it was that that made her heart beat out of love from this unicorn beside her. She was broken in so many places, they both were. They could hold each other together. They could. 

 

Tempest spoke. Saying that she couldn't stay. But the words felt hollow to Glitter's ear. She could tell the unicorn didn't want to mean what she said. In that moment she knew she'd have Tempest stay. They wouldn't be together...not yet anyway, but they would get to spend time together. They would learn from each other and grow strong together. They would mend their brokenness. They would show each other that there were some ponies tat actually did care. They would care for each other. 

 

Then Tempest put down her head.She could feel the shuddering pain coming off the mare. it wasn't really physical pain, it was deeper, more raw and bleeding. Glitter felt her heart go out. She felt the pain that Tempest felt. She didn't know the depth of the whole story but she knew enough. She would prove herself to Tempest. Prove that her love was real. That would take time. For now, she'd do what she could.

 

Glitter bent down her head, laying her muzzle over Tempest's neck. Breathing in her scent and settling into a state of peace. A magic came from Glitter's horn. It swirled around them, pulsing with warmth. She said nothing, just held herself and Tempest in that magic. She would not let go.

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Tempest did not protest against Glitter and the snuggling or magic. She wanted it to last forever in a way. This tiny ember of something so lost warmed her in ways nothing has ever done before. It was terrifying in a way yet she was even more scared to let the ember go, fearful it would die out the moment she did. And so she laid unmoving for what felt like hours. But she was not sure if it was. Time felt slow, like a crawl yet to fast all the same. She only broke her unmoving silence when her stomach made it very clear it was done with all this laying around and lack of cooking. But she did not wish to move yet… she did not want Glitter to let go. So words were all she let slip. “I’m… I’m sorry. For everything. I missed you so much I… I hated you. But I… Never really did. I hate it. I hate myself. I hate what I am.” She felt like an old door was being forced open. One locked up for far, far too long. “I’m a monster. I have done awful things and look at me. Look where I am. I’m not happy. I’m no better than when I was a filly running away so long ago. All I have done. All the suffering. Pain. And… Nothing. I’d have died just like that filly so long ago. Just… Why did you do it?” She asked, she had too ask. She did not know why she did. She knew what glitter would say. ‘Too save you.’ but that’s not what she wanted to know. She just did not know how too ask what she really did want to know. She was too scared to ask what may destroy this moment. 

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