STOMP Remembrance Project

ATTENTION: If you had an account that was created before September 1st 2021 you will need to re-create your account again. We apologize for this inconvenience. This should not happen again.

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
The comic did preserve some of the dialog at least. I know I used verbatim quotes for that part. Except for "I'm not even supposed to be here today." That was pure retcon to make Static more sympathetic.

And the "You taste mean" part was from the OOC thread.
 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
The barometer for Static and Rhapsody's friendship:



That's the day Night Cap suddenly had TWO ponies wanting to toss him off a cliff. :p


So...Rhapsody...are we still on for this whole tossing Night Cap off a cliff thing?


Just keep adding fuel to that 'I wanna be thrown off a cliff' fire :p


Heh! Static still wouldn't trust her, he'd still consider it a betrayal, and they still wouldn't be able to be friends. He may just have to toss Night Cap off a cliff.


*mutters* So help me, Night Cap I'll throw you off a cliff!


Yeah, I really wasn't seriously thinking of having Static investigating it. He feels like Black Night really saved his neck. So he wouldn't want to do anything to hurt her.

Rhapsody on the other hand...well...he has no quarrel with her...yet. But if things come to a head between her and Night Cap...well...there's loyalty there with Night Cap...so...yeah...could be interesting.

Which was not how I pictured it happening when joining this RP. In fact, I seem to distinctly remember suggesting Static and Rhapsody teaming up to throw Night Cap off a cliff.

How did things turn out so wrong!!!!


I may have to throw you off a cliff.


So...remember before Static actually had his premiere and we had such dreams of him and Rhapsody throwing Night Cap off a cliff together?

:doh I think someone somewhere done goofed! :doh

And I think that last post may look funny to the others considering Rhapsody's keeping it between the two of them and Static just pointed out everyone in the cabin.


Hey, you know I'll always support you. I've had a firm 'throw Night Cap off a cliff' stance since this started. :p


"So, Rhapsody. Yeah, you remember that argument we had on the ride over? Yeah, that one. Umm...you wanna forget the whole thing and just throw him off a cliff?


At last, things are finally getting back on track to us throwing Night Cap off a cliff together.


It's going to be a great opportunity to develop a lasting friendship.

...between Static and Rhapsody, as they come together and bond over throwing Night Cap off a cliff.


"Yeah, but I don't know about his treachery with Dazzling yet. So I'm afraid we'll still have to wait to do the whole 'throwing Night Cap off a cliff' thing."


[Gonna toss him off a cliff...Dazzling or no Dazzling...I'm tossing him off a cliff!]

 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
Season 2 continued

Fast asleep, Light Fantastic dreamed of a wonderful performance. A wondrous dance that would make a true princess of Anugypt jealous. Yet, there were none around her. The music kept playing as the air grew dry and warm. As far as the eye could see, there was nothing but sand.

Light Fantastic was then awoken by the alarm. There was a lingering feeling of dread like she had been experiencing the past several days.


"It must have gotten lost in the mail. They delivered it to my address and considering the sogginess, they probably misplaced it before that." Looking at the writing, Amber could easily tell who it was from. Inside the envelope the letter read:

Spoiler



Static Signal headed for the museum exit only to find it locked. Then he hears,
"Good morning. I assume that slumber and sleep has eluded you?"


Snowy Skies bolted awake, the covers almost frozen to his coat by sweat. He threw the covers off and opened the curtains. It was a little after dawn, and he had slept for a while, but he was certainly not falling asleep again tonight. All the better. Now that he was thinking properly, he could tell that he needed to think, and make certain he hadn't missed anything from the nights events. He walked to his closet and opened it, looking at the sparse two items inside. One was a perfectly laundered and pressed tuxedo, which he supposed he would be wearing to the dance performance tonight, and the other was a cello made of dark, sleek, wood, taller than him, leaning upright against a stand.


As the others awoke, Night Cap continued in the land of dreams. "I'm not scared. Well...maybe a little." The filly then climbed onto onto his back again.

Spoiler



Static turned to see Tangerine Sands. "Not completely. I figure I got at good hour...total."Static sighed. "I was headed towards a cafeteria for breakfast. I...would invite you along, but you were far kinder to me last night than I deserved and I'd hate to repay that kindness by subjecting you to the places I go for food.


Snowy Skies pulls the cello gently out of the closet, inhaling the comforting scent of wood lacquer that accompanied the ‘gentle repose’ spell favored by woodworkers for keeping their creations fresh, and grabbed the bow with his magic. He put the bow to the strings, let his heart set the beat, and began to play Ponybel's Canon.

Ponybel's Canon is normally the bane of cello players. The swelling, gorgeous orchestra piece spends the entire song making the cellos lay the baseline, the backbone on which every beautiful curlicue of music is lain, by playing the same two notes over and over and over again. It’s just A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D...But for Snowy Skies, it was the perfect song. The part of his brain that was always looking, searching, hooking onto details like the grain of a wood or the whorl of someone’s mane, went quiet when he played music. And in that blissful calm, he could slowly, rationally, piece together the night’s events, from a radically different perspective.

A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D...The obvious starting place was the icicle that had nailed him after his illusion of life. It was probably unrelated to his dream, considering he’d had the dream before. If he keeps up this emotional state of mind, they'll find him. That was perhaps the one certainty of the night. But which emotional state were they talking about? He’d spent many years giving small regard to the ponies around him, and even less to those who attacked him. Nothing about that had changed last night. His story had, perhaps, been excessively cruel, he admitted. He had personally come to terms with that by living the story himself, alongside his target, but perhaps that was not enough for whatever cosmic power his pursuers answered to. In any case, casting the illusion of life, in any form, was clearly too dangerous, except in extreme emergencies. Nightmare was in the same boat, certainly, and Maze was probably too risky. How frustrating. He had spent years honing his sole talent, illusions, into a proper weapon, more than the stuff of party tricks and bluffs. He had thought that he was finally able to protect himself from anyone who could threaten him. And now some grand Divine Iceberg from on high was coming down to tell him nope, you’re back where you started. You can make it look like you’re wearing armor made of knives, but that won’t stop some fool from bashing you with something blunt and heavy. You can make it look like you’re made of fire, but it won’t mean a thing against the freezing cold. He was, once more, a unicorn without magic.

A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D...Perhaps even more worrisome than the new ruling from his grand Divine Iceberg was what had happened under the thau...tamacer…the dinosaur’s skeleton. When he collapsed, he'd lost sight of the difference between reality and illusion. He closed his eyes, and he saw the line in his head, inscrutable, thrumming along in time with his heart (and, by extension, the two chords of the Canon he was playing). This was his line between the real and the imaginary. To lose it was to lose everything meaningful about life. And he had lost, for an immeasurable amount of time. Given that the chase was still going when he resurfaced from the rubble, he had probably not been gone long, but the fact was that he did not know how long he had ceased to exist in the real world. This alone was probably enough to outlaw the use of Nightmare and the Illusion of Life, really. Even the Illusion of Safety suddenly seemed sinister. He would have to be very, very, careful about what he casted and when he casted it.

A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D...Brisk Iron had threatened to throw him back in jail last night. She’d certainly do it, though he wished he understood what she was receiving complaints about. Were ponies really that horrified by the bacon golem? Literally all he had done that night that should have been noticeable to Steel Flint was lie to COIN, over and over again. Everything else took place well beyond her or anyone else’s sensory realm. Perhaps those unseeable things were a touch unsavory, but he had already discussed that, both with Brisk Iron and himself. Still, the threat was real. He thought about his life here, the collection of instruments he had, the poutine supplies, the central heating…the harp in the store window he had been saving for, with the blue inlay and the swan’s head. He liked his life here, as dangerous as it could be to admit that. He didn't want to go back to jail. So he supposed he would have to play strictly by the rules…whatever those rules were right now. Maybe he should ask Brisk Iron. He was going to have to ask Brisk Iron. Perhaps he could open with an apology, Brisk Iron seemed like the sort of pony who liked it when things went the way she expected them ...

A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D...At least part of playing by the rules meant participating in more events like those of last night. Given that every proper weapon he had concocted in the last few years was gone, he needed something new. He opened his eyes and looked at the cello in front of him, still mechanically playing the same two notes. He really only had two skills. It went against most of what he still believed in to use a musical instrument as a weapon, but if his other talent was denied to him, then perhaps he had no choice. He experimentally inserted a quarter note into the rhythm, a screeching, high C sharp, before resuming his baseline. It put his teeth on edge, certainly, but what else could he do with it? He would have to investigate.

A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D...his laugh, at the end of the night, was quite interesting. It was fascinating because it wasn't a chuckle, or a giggle, or any of the numerous fake laughs he knew how to bring out. It was his real laugh, and he hadn't heard it in years. Static Signal had brought a real laugh out of him, at his most exhausted and miserable. He was a good pony, with a good heart in his chest. This was not particularly out of line with his apparent rage issues. After all, you needed to really care about something to get dangerously angry. Something about him, perhaps his persistent optimism, or his commitment to pleasing Brisk Iron and doing the right thing, was refreshing. He was…hard to malign, which was very rare. He wasn't just interesting, he was nice to be around. And from the sound of it, he needed a confidante, so there wasn't a better time to get to know him. Perhaps Static would be a good influence on him.

A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D, A, D...Light Fantastic was quite beautiful.

Snowy Skies abruptly opened his eyes. That was enough introspection for one morning. He checked the clock. He had, in fact, overstayed his welcome. He should have left a few minutes ago. He shoved the cello back into the closet, threw the tuxedo into a small box, strapped the box and his smallest viola case to his back, grabbed a banana from the counter, and dashed off to work, feeling very light. But maybe that was the lack of sleep.

 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
"Toni?" Amber mused aloud. This is perfectly capital. "Thank you very much," she nodded to her neighbor, slipping the letter into her saddlebag and taking a moment to arrange things so that its damp wouldn't contaminate her notebooks. But who to invite? She may as well invite Mr. Signal. It would be an appropriate welcome to his new job with the Keep. And would Mr. Cap be in attendance?


Tangerine Sands seemed amused by Static's comment, "It can't be all that bad and horrible. And if it is, well...I could always tell the police, couldn't I?"


"That was like falling...up." The filly seemed confused but otherwise attentive.
cleardot.gif



Rhapsody was never what one could be called a morning pony, if that wasn't evident enough between her two jobs. It had been a long night for her, and Brisk Iron hadn't put her in the best of moods either. It was the detestable alarm that had woken up her and Tyberious. She grumbles and without looking smack the clock with her hoof sending it promptly into the wall where it lands in a pile of bent metal and broken gears... Its loss didn't bother her, as she rolled back over in her bed as by this point she just bought the stupid things in bulk. Surely a few more minutes of sleep wouldn't hurt, not like she was looking forward to facing Brisk again this morning anyway.


Static winced at the thought. "It...wouldn't be the first time it's been shut down," Static commented. And since they kinda know me by name there, I'd hate to be the one who brings them down this time. Besides, it's one of the few places I can afford. Static sighed. Well, here's hoping we catch him on a good day.

Static led Tangerine Sands down the street. The cafe wasn't far from the museum, just a few blocks. From the outside, it looked like a perfectly fine mom and pop diner. There were several such businesses that lined the street.

But the moment the two walked in, any thought of it being a respectable establishment flew out of Tangerine's mind. The tables looked like they hadn't been wiped down...let alone cleaned...in...well...ever. You could see the owner working the grill in back.

He was a brown colored stallion with a black mane and an eyepatch over his right eye. You couldn't tell how much of the black was the actual color of the mane or if it was just a bunch of piled on soot from the grill. Grease splatters obscured the entirety of the "stainless" steel grill and most of the walls. The lighting was so dim, Tangerine had to figure Static got more light in his projector booth.

The stallion came out of the kitchen and let out a cross between a laugh and a sustained scoff. Hey, Stasi, you old feather chaser! Pony feathers, son! You look like a griffon dragged you through your momma's barn yard. What happened?

Static returned the stallions grin. "Visited your sister at the stallions club, Skivey! She was a lot more gentle this time."

Skivey Dives snorted in response. What'll it be, coffee or cider?

"Coffee...lots of coffee...and the special...two of them"

A few moments later, Skivey brought the "coffee." It tasted more like water and chicory with barely enough coffee in it for coloring. The sandwhich looked edible enough, though Tangerine Sands dreaded to even think what he would see if he actually had a good look at the kitchen.


Tangerine Sands' expression was one of deep regret and sorrow,
"No wonder you were in such a foul and ill mood. I ought to simply threaten last night's miscreants with a taste of this and I'm sure it would set them straight. Reporting this would cause undue hazard to the police force. I don't want to demean and insult the chef at his craft but his craft has about as much tact as trying to sew with a battle axe." There was a long pause. "I can't let you eat this. I'll pa! y for it since it's already been ordered but it would be against principles to allow this continue. How long have you been eating here? And don't worry about negative reactions. The only pony who should be able to hear me right now is you."


As they walked into the room, a cheerful mare behind the desk greeted them, "Hello Night Cap. Need some help?"


Static winced. It may not be much, but it was still a regular hang out of his. Since I moved here...a few months I guess? I mean, it's not all the time, just occasionally when I need something different from those Flim Flam Frozen Chimicherrychangas. It's not so bad. It's...what I'm used to. I'd honestly be afraid to eat what you might call decent food. I'd probably get spoiled by it and start wanting it all the time.


Snowy Skies deposits his banana in the trash and his gear in the break room, heading for Brisk Iron's office. Though not as bouncy as normal, he does seem to be in a good mood. Arriving in the back depths of the keep, he gently knocks on the Director's door.

Spoiler


Light Fantastic awoke the next morning and slowly crawled out of her bed.

She shook her head to clear the thoughts of that dream she had had the night before. Today was the day of her big performance, and she didn't need anything to distract from the task ahead of her. Nothing that a cup of Saddle Arabian coffee couldn't fix.

"Oh, Saddle Arabian coffee," she muttered, "how I love thee."

As she meandered to the coffee pot, she meticulously went over the steps she would have to do for her performance.


It was a beautifully blissful day outside. Just as Light Fantastic reached her coffee pot, there was a loud knock on her door, "Ms Fantastic, are you home?"


From inside the office, Snowy Skies heard,
"You may enter."


Tangerine Sands shook his head,
"I guess there's something to be said for camaraderie but if only in was joined and accompanied by quality. I don't eat out that much and prefer cooking. I'm not suggesting you suddenly try to become a master chef but small changes can result in big changes over time. It just seems odd that..." He thought for just a moment, "Never mind. It's none of my business. Do you have any outside hobbies or recreation?"


"Double Z tends to come and go but she doesn't stay here. Did see her a few hours ago. Headed up to the roof and I don't think she's been back down. The filly then spoke up, "Yeah, the lady mentioned something about a zig zag. It was like she was talking to herself."


That was her voice, certainly. Snowy Skies gently opened the door and entered the room, looking very composed. "I have a few things I'd like to say and request, director."


Hobbies or recreation? Static really hadn't considered it. He worked, went home, drank cider and went to bed. And even that much he was thinking he was going to have to quit. But if Tangerine Sands was horrified by the places he ate, Static sure wasn't too keen on letting on that he was a drunkard.

Still...he guessed there was no sense in holding back now.

"My life outside of work? It...mostly centers around the contents of my fridge...contents I think I'm better off throwing out the moment I get back home." Certainly vague, but he was having a tough time simply coming out and saying "Mr. Sands, I'm an alcoholic." Besides, Sands seemed to be rather perceptive. Static was certain he not only picked up on his meaning...but probably figured out far more about his life than he cared to let on simply by reading between the lines.


Light Fantastic turned towards the door.

"Come in!" she called. "The door's open!"

 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
After an uneventful sleep, Rhapsody wakes up close to an hour later then she wanted, thanks to Tyberious' persistent pestering. "Oh, yes Tyberious. I SO don't want to be late for my scolding by Brisk Iron." She grumbles with a roll of her eyes as she gets dressed, before going down stairs and waving a quick breakfast of apple-cinnamon oatmeal. Once basic needs are out of the way she heads out towards the museum, not in any real rush to get to work.


The museum seemed to have fallen back into its usual pace as Amber arrived. It was hard for her to reconcile that this was the same museum she left only hours before after an intense battle with COIN. Their intrusion had transformed her home turf into ... something else, and she couldn't help feeling a bit uneasy as she trotted into the break room to fetch her third cup of coffee for the day and back to her office to continue working with her bibliographic survey of the Llamayan calendar.

Her focus wasn't quite where she wanted it. She caught herself lingering and mulling over individual words and statements in the papers spread over her desk. She would need to catch up with Rhapsody today - she hadn't had the nerve to ask her friend and teammate to the performance tonight, and Rhapsody's ticket was still in her saddlebag with Amber's own, along with the two from Toni. Suddenly, she realized that she would need to repeat the performance of asking - but who to invite? Ms. Steel came rapidly to mind, but as much as Amber respected the sharp-eyed unicorn, she had always been uneasy about inviting her into her own personal life; it seemed somehow inappropriate. And Mr. Signal - Amber felt the need to welcome him properly into STOMP, but wasn't sure whether a dance and musical recital would really be to his tastes. And then there was the little earth pony, Night Cap....

She'd simply have to ask them all. Surely one of them would turn down the ticket for one or another of these very good reasons, and everything would work smoothly from there.


Night Wings cautiously entered, "Sorry to disturb your morning. While I was originally going to meet with you later, something of concern popped up. After we managed to get the suit off of the runner you captured, we found that it was Double Dusk, the extreme sports star. Upon questioning her and performing some magical tests, all signs point towards some sort of magical hypnotism. With that in mind, the police let her go. I'm hoping the police made the right decision but I'm also going to be watching to make sure COIN doesn't try anything funny tonight at your performance."


Brisk Iron arched an eyebrow, "It seems odd to walk in making requests but I'll hear you out. Said requests may not be approved, however."


"Speaking of your home, the police are actively watching and monitoring it in case Dazzling Midnight returns. There's something bothering me about this whole COIN situation and I can't place just what it is." Tangerine Sands sighed, "When you're finished with your...food...you may want to see about speaking and talking with one of the Keep's accountants. Just to make sure you aren't missing something from your paycheck."


While Amber Spark was hard at work, Steel Flint walked in, "How are you holding up?"


As if on cue, a lift arrived on that floor. As Night Cap and the filly rode up, the air grew increasingly warm and dry. It suddenly stopped a few floors from the top and wouldn't go any higher.

Spoiler


"Reasonably well, considering circumstances, ma'am," Amber said. "I think you'll understand that it is no small thing for me to say that I'm finding myself having some difficulty concentrating." Amber looked over the papers on her desk and straightened one pile with her magic, tapping it against the table to straighten the pages. "I wouldn't have expected that seeing COIN here -" and one of the ponies I most respect beaten and bleeding in the exhibition hall "would unsettle me as much as it has."

Amber paused. "I imagine that everypony is going to need some time and stimulation to settle back into the rhythm of things. It occurred to me, ma'am - well, I've just received an additional pair of tickets to the recital tonight, and I - I was curious if perhaps you," she said, trailing off and watching for signs of Ms. Flint's reaction.


Steel Flint chuckled, "Did Brisk put you up to this? I respect the skill ballet requires but unlike her, I simply can't get into it."


"N-no ma'am," Amber said. "I simply thought it would be good for the team to unwind a bit, ma'am, after last night - I intended to invite Rhapsody, and I thought perhaps the new projectionist, Mr. Signal, might be interested...?"


"Inviting Mr. Signal sounds like a most capital idea for getting him acquainted with current staff. And actually...if you're needing something to do, would you mind running a small errand?"


My paycheck? Static asked curiously. Oh, well, Ms. Iron already told me she was docking it. Not sure how much or for how long...but...I can't really complain. After last night I'm just thankful to still be getting a paycheck at all.

As far as Dazzling Midnight...I'm not quite sure what to expect from her. He admitted. She knew far more about me than I find comfortable. What if she found out that I sold them out last night and isn't even planning on showing up? Or maybe she'll just find me on my way home and...
Static shuddered. I don't know why. After last night, it seems like I shouldn't be afraid of Dazzing Midnight any more. It seems I can take care of myself better than I realised. Yet for some reason...that mare just scares the Tartarus out of me.


"Ye - no, ma'am,"
Amber said, "What would you like me to do?"

 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
"Not knowing how much or how long is a problem. That's the kind of thing you should always ask and inquire for clarification on the spot. Brisk Iron may be fair but a more unsavory boss could have shortchanged you. Simply asking is well within your rights. As far as Dazzling Midnight, I'm sure that miscreant will be properly handled."


"I haven't seen Zig Zag at work today. I was wondering if you could stop by her house and see if she's feeling okay."


Night Cap waited and waited. Oddly, the lift didn't start back up.


Static shrugged. I suppose I can check with accounting to make sure nothings missing above what I'm being docked. COIN would have to be pretty petty to steal from a simple projectionists paycheck...but then...after last night I guess I can't really put anything past them. I'll check as soon as my movies are over this afternoon.

Static checked the clock. Speaking of, I guess I should make my way back.

Static stood to leave, but turned back to Tangerine. Last night, COIN really had my head turned around, not knowing who to trust. I'm...sorry. I severely misjudged you. I'm glad I was wrong though.

Static left to go back to the museum.


"It's not exactly a typical request." Snowy Skies says, taking a deep breath. "I did some...unsavory things last night. The worst of them will never be done by me again, for my sake and for the sake of those around me. However, if I was doing said worst things correctly, no one in the room that reports to you should have been aware that I was doing them. Which means you are...disappointed in me...for entirely different actions. Given that I am taking your threats of reimprisonment seriously, I would like to request exact knowledge of what I'm not supposed to be doing."


Spoiler

The wounderful thing about being a pegasus, is that even when running late, one could always make up a lot of that time. Rhapsody, certainly wasn't the fastest flier around, but she was far from a sloth either. With the right currents, she could easily make up a majority of her lateness. The morning sun's glare was annoying, and she ponders maybe looking into some sunglasses or something for any time she's out before noon like she is today. By time she arrives at the steps of the Keep, she's only taken about 15 minutes of flying time.


Things remained quiet until Night Cap felt like he was suddenly and sharply pulled through time and space. He felt like he went upwards but the place he wound up did not seem like the roof of a building. As far as his eyes could see was a sea of sand. However, off in the distance he could hear a voice crying. And yet, off in the distance he could hear that voice laughing.


Brisk Iron's posture slightly adjusted,
"Steel Flint has knowledge of why you're here. She initially found your bacon golem distateful but would have let it slide if not for what followed. She, or really any of us, could not have known what was truly done to those COIN agents. However, she did see the pegasus' reaction. I'm not going into details but Ms. Flint has had...a terrifying experience in the past. While not the same circumstances, she related to what was supposed to be the enemy. She finds you terrifying and if those I trust feel they can't work with you, then I can't either. The whole problem is that of not knowing."


As Static Signal entered the documents department, Ready Quill approached him,
"Hey-and-a-wonderful-morning-to-you. So-how-did-the-equipment-hold-up-last-night?"

Spoiler


Amber shuffled her piles one last time, sorting them into a neat and orderly stack, ready to be picked up where she left off, with a quiet sigh at not being able to do much for them now. "Yes, ma'am, of course," she said. "Where does Ms. Zag live?"


"Hm. I feel as though I should be moderately offended that my work wasn't original enough." Snowy Skies says, focused intently on the corner of a desk. He looks up abruptly and says "I don't really have much to offer in that respect except that I won't be casting that particular spell again, and if anyone thinks it might help I can write up exactly what I did."


"I don't have her address directly memorized but I know Hazel Naught is her neighbor. So you two could go together." Steel Flint said in a rather matter-of-fact tone.


Rhapsody arrived to find Brisk Iron's door closed.



Brisk Iron shook her head, "I don't think details would help. For the moment, I'll mostly keep the two of you in separate situations. She's not incapable of changing her mind but trust is hard to gain."


"I didn't think it would either, I just figured you should know the information was available." Snowy Skies turns to the door, but stops and slowly turns around, looking quite sheepish. "I have second, much more preposterous request. The dance recital tonight...well, I was unaware of it until yesterday, so I don't have a ticket, and given the...prestige...of the show, it seems unlikely that I could afford one anyways...so in any case I was planning to attend as you. Given my new propensity for following rules to the letter, this seems unwise. What advice can you give me about procuring a reasonably-priced ticket?"

This honesty thing was working out really, really, well. He probably seemed less dangerous now than he ever had before.
cleardot.gif



Brisk Iron arched an eyebrow, then pulled a ticket out of her desk,
"I plan on attending so going as me is unwise. Otherwise, don't do anything I wouldn't do. The seat itself is near the back."


Snowy Skies blinks in stunned surprise. He was supposed to be good at suppressing that sort of thing, but today was quickly becoming an off day for him. "I wasn't exactly intending to remain as you the entire time. Once you're inside people tend to assume you have a valid ticket. But, well, thank you. I'm going to go tend to the dinosaur that almost killed me last night." He takes the ticket and hastily opens the door.

Spoiler

 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
Amber blinked. "Hazel Naught?" she echoed. "Yes, yes ma'am, I'll go and find her. Thank you, ma'am." Amber stepped out of the office, holding the door for Ms. Flint to exit, and silently cursing her luck to be required to interact with the accountant again so soon.


Worked like a dream, thank you.
Static told Ready Quill. The Morse Code device really helped coordinating things and that projector...I can't believe how fabulously it worked. Bluffed a couple COIN opperatives into running away just by using that alone. Thanks for letting me use it. He hands the equipment back over to Quill. If I ever get put on another mission like that again, I'd love to be able to use it again if I may.


Amber found her way to the accounting department and rapped on the door to Ms. Naught's office. "Ms. Naught? Steel Flint sent me to speak with you," she said.


There was a rattle behind the latch and then Hazel Naught opened the door. "Hello there Ms. Spark. Your presence here is new. How may I help you?"


As Snowy Skies reach the exhibit hall with the damaged fossil, he saw Dusty Winds and several janitors trying to clean up the mess, "Oh hey, Snowy. You get assigned to this too?"


Ready Quill beamed, "Glad-to-know-everything-worked-like-a-charm. If-you're-so-eager-to-try-it-out-again-I-just-might-have-the-job-for-you. Considering-the-historic-worth-of-the-Anugypt-Strut-how-would-you-like-to-record-tonight's-ballet? I-don't-have-any-tickets-but-I'm-sure-there-might-be-some-coworkers-with-spares."


Night Cap's jog felt like it took an eternity. However, the voices grew louder as he got closer. His steps in the sand grew...rhythmic.

Spoiler


Rhapsody makes her way slowly through the museum, which seems oodly quiet this morning after so much commontion last night, she had expect there to still be more hustle in trying to settle things then there was. She passes by the fallen fosil, seeing it cordoned off, and several ponies attended to it, though otherwise thing seem rather uneventful for her this morning. She had thought for sure she would have seen Amber who had seemed rather concerned for her well being last night, or somepony else, maybe they're just not around yet. She knocks on Brisk's door as she arrives.


From behind the door, Rhapsody heard, "You may enter."


With an outpouring of speed, Night Cap soon saw a cage made of sand in the distance that was surrounded by four towers. Within the cage sat Zig Zag.


Rhapsody Enters.


Static grinned. Any chance to use this equipment sounded great to him. but then he frowned. "There's...a lot of ifs there." he said. "I'd have to finds someone with an extra ticket...and..."Dazzling Midnight in his apartment was still an issue. And there's another...issue...that needs to be wrapped up before the show even if I can find a ticket. But if I can...I would absolutely love any chance to give this stuff a whirl again.


Snowy Skies bounces a little into the air, not achieving the most graceful of landings. "Right. I forgot to check the assignment board. I bet I'm here, but I'm going to go check that." He shoots off in the direction of the locker room and assignment board.

How long until playing by the letter drove him mad? A week? Less?


"If you have no questions, Ms. Fantastic, I'll be escorting you to the recital."


"Good morning, Rhapsody. I think time away from last night's events may lead to cooler heads. I'll go first in stating that I made a mistake in not telling any members of the STOMP team, nor Steel Flint, that the Sword of Shining Dark was a replica. While I was worried about information leaks, I didn't inform those who needed to make critical decisions. What worries, if not terrifies, me is that it seems like you would have more than! gladly jumped at a chance to use the sword if it was real. You were brought on as an astronomer and intellectual who happens to spend her free time valiantly fighting crime, not as a reckless vigilante who coincidentally has a little bit of book smarts. The latter makes you the most dangerous member of the team by far."


"Well-just-let-me-know-if-it-looks-like-you-can. But-no-need-for-me-to-hold-you-up-since-I-know-you-have-work-to-do."

 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
Rhapsody huffs as she looks to you. "As I said said last night: Silent Belle was not fooled by Static's illusion, and had little fear of Black Night in general. She was already right next to the display; with a sonic device of unknown purpose. Amber was blind without her glasses, and Static seemed like he an aloof projectionist that was way out of league... until he started to fight shortly after I made my move. During that moment, I acted on the information I had: COIN had an agent seemingly capable of getting the sword, a civilian out of his league that didn't look like he could take a punch, and the most powerful of us se! verely handicapped. The quickest route to trying to protect all your assets was the sword. If it meant saving two lives and keeping the sword in our hooves, I was willing to take the risk."

She states and looks away. "I can be reckless. but that's not always bad thing: being too cautious can be equally as dangerous in my experiences, makes you slow to react and second guess yourself and there isn't always time for that." Her voice is sorrowful, and a bit distance as she speaks on this. "Either path, you've got to to be willing to trust those around you if it goes wrong; and I trust..." she pauses for only briefest of moments. "Most of the STOMP team." There being currently only one exception to that. "If something had happened, I have faith that they'd either get through to me or been able to take me down."

The black pegasus's steely gaze returns to Brisk. "I told you last night that I accept full responsibility for my actions, that hasn't changed. You want to reprimand me, or kick me off the team, go ahead."


"Y-Yes, ma'am, I suppose that is true, ma'am," Amber said, suddenly very uneasy. "I apologize for my behavior yesterday, ma'am. I understand that the Keep's budgeting process is very important, ma'am, given the expense of much of the good work we do - a bit saved is a bit earned, correct?" Amber paused. "Ms. Flint suggested that I should check in with Zig Zag at her home - she failed to report this morning, ma'am, and we became concerned. Ms. Flint suggested that you knew where she lived, so she sent me to speak with you, ma'am."


Light Fantastic smiled at Night Wings.

"Thank you for the update," she said, "I would be delighted to have an escort."


Static gave a polite nod to Ready Quill. If at all possible, I hope to be there. I'm not usually one for musicals, but it seems to be all everyone's talking about and I actually met one of the cast members briefly last night. So...here's hoping.

Static took his leave and went into the projection both. Looking down the film schedule, he went to the film library, took out the film noted on the schedule and threaded the projectors for the first two reels. At the prescribed time, he started the movie and set an silent timer for when to start the next reel.

Once the movie was rolling, this was when he had a lot of time to think to himself. Usually it was a dull time where he'd just zone out and wait, bored out of his mind.

But today was different. He had more than just looking forward to the next cider to pass his time. Today he actually had a lot on his mind and was grateful for the time he had to think about it. He thought about his apartment layout and how best to position the police so Dazzling Midnight wouldn't see them until the trap was sprung. He thought about Amber, Snowie Skies, Black Night and that curious little fellow...Night Cap? Yeah, that was his name. He'd never met a dream stepper...or whatever they were called...before.

Then of course he thought about Anchors Away...but tried to shake that image out of his head completely. She barely even knew he existed yesterday. Once she learned of his...indiscretion...she'd probably absolutely hate him.

Still...with all the friends he did manage to make last night...he was kinda hoping one of them might actually pop in while the film was running. He certainly wouldn't mind the diversion.


"I was wondering if Zig Zag was on vacation. I do believe she's never missed a day of work. Well, I was just finishing up some tax work for some new employees so I have the time to take you. Were you already ready or did you have anything to settle away before we set out?"


Brisk Iron sighed, "I would really rather NOT have to remove you from the team. My worry is having to tell any surviving family members that you didn't make it back from a mission, especially i! f it's preventable. I've had to do it before and it's not pleasant. Many of these artifacts are dangerous on their own without COIN complicating matters.

I don't want to make this solely about reprimands so I have a favor to ask if you're willing. I would like for you to watch over Light Fantastic today. Something's bugging me about last night and I can't quite place my hoof on it. I hate that. I'm sure she won't mind if you tell her and if COIN tries anything funny during the ballet, or before since there's a charity dinner, there'll be somepony there that can handle things. I don't have any more tickets for the ballet itself but I do have a spare ticket for the charity dinner."



As the movie continued to play, Static Signal could hear somepony walk in. Sitting in one of the seats and intently watching the movie was Anchors Away.


The trip for Light Fantastic was mostly uneventful. As she arrived, she was hounded by the press but it was nothing she hadn't dealt with before. As she entered, several stared at Night Wings. "Is there a preferred place I should be? Wouldn't want to make your associates too uncomfortable."


As Snowy Skies arrived at the assignment board, he found that he was indeed scheduled for cleaning up the destroyed fossil replica.


There was a look of fear and panic in Zig Zag's eyes when she looked at Night Cap. She spoke but there was also another voice interlaced with hers:


"What are you doing?
Silly pony who does not run.
Ancient past has been summoned!
It looks like I shall have some fun.
Go tell Brisk Iron!"

 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
"What an excellent way to waste time this has been," Snowy Skies mutters, stowing his ticket next to the tuxedo in his locker before hurrying back to the wrecked exhibit. "So where do you want me?" He asks Dusty, looking at the wreckage and trying to pick out the exact point he had climbed out of. It was fake, he realized, now that he was looking at it from a calmer perspective...which explained the lack of bone splinters in his coat, and produced a pleasant bit of alliteration. "What are we doing with the wrecked replica?" He reiterates, smiling subtly.


Rhapsody nods some. "Yes, and if I do my job, you won't have to worry about that for any pony." She replies calmly, like their discussion during the mission for the wand, the black pegasus still sees it as her duty to protect everypony around her. She nods at the request. "If you are sure you want someone as reckless as me on the job, then I am willing to do so." She replies with a soft grin. "Though before I can get to the theater I have an errand of my own to run; Black Night should check in with her police contact abo! ut last night, and probably give a heads up about the possibility of something happening at the performance tonight. Having them be on more guard should hopefully decrease the amount of trouble we have."


Static looked to see if anypony else was watching the movie. Shocker! He was playing the movie to nopony...except Anchors of course. Like many of the movies he played, he almost felt like he was getting paid to do nothing. Still, that meant he wouldn't be really interrupting if he...

He tapped on the glass to get Anchors' attention. When she looked up to see him, he waved her up.


Light Fantastic gave a shrug.

"You can wander around if you like," she said, "If any asks, just tell them that I personally invited you. Now, I must prepare."

With a flick of her neon mane, she trotted off to her dressing room.


"Makes sense on the police contact. I'll just note all this as an errand for me and that should smooth things over with payroll."


Anchors Away seemed a little confused at first, then it seemed to dawn on her and she left her seat. After a few minutes, Static Signal heard a knock on the projection room door.


When Light Fantastic arrived in her dressing room, she found that the seamstress had made the final adjustments and to the recreation of the garments worn by an ancient Anugypt Princess.
Spoiler




Dusty Winds pointed to a diagram, "We're checking to see if anything is missing or broken. After that, we gotta put it back together."


A laugh echoed throughout the air. Instead of coming from Zig Zag, a voice surrounded Night Cap,


"Pitiful fool who will not shoo,
I have to ask, what will you do?
"


"Repair the wrecked replica, based on this...replicate." Snowy Skies frowns. Not the roll he was hoping for. "Got it." He picks up a bone and compares it to the diagram.

Spoiler

 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
Static opened the door and let Anchors in. It occurred to him just then that he didn't really wasn't sure what to say.

He waved her up because he thought maybe she had something to say. But now that he did wave her up, it became up to him to start the conversation.

And honestly...what was he going to say? What could he say? If she hadn't heard about last night, did he really want to start off with a conversation about how he...

And if she did know about last night, was he just going to start off with a riffling off of excuses.

Didn't matter anyway. He found the cat had his tongue...again. The best he could manage was an awkard smile, wave and Umm...hello!
cleardot.gif



Light Fantastic eyes lit up at her outfit for her performance.

"I love it!" she squealed to no one in particular, "I'm going to have to give the seamstress a bonus for this."


"Alright, so far it looks like nothing's missing and the damage is just small dents a real fossil might have picked up over time so we should be good. We'll be mounting these on support braces, then lifting the braces."

Spoiler



Anchors Away happily smiled, "Hello! Really wish they'd get a better narrator for these movies. If it weren't for the topic, I'd be bored. Coral is pretty."


As she marveled over the dress, Light Fantastic could hear a knock on her dressing room door.


The sand cage rose up to form a tower as the voice continued,

"Your mind shudders and trembles with fear,
Should memory of you be sincere?
"


Oh! Static said with a wince. You really were watching...I'm sorry. I thought...well...never mind what I thought. I guess thinking isn't one of my strong suits.

I just...I know we only met briefly yesterday. I just...you seemed like an interesting pony to get to know and when I saw you in the theatre just now, I just...I just wanted to get to know you better, I suppose. Maybe have a conversation where I didn't wind up embarassing myself...which...doesn't seem to be working out that way right now. I didn't mean to interrupt you.

But...you know...if you actually like the films, if you want to come by some time after work...I mean, tonight probably wouldn't be good because, you know...COIN operatives in my apartment being arrested, possibly Light Fantastic's performance...if I can find a ticket somewhere...

But maybe some night, after work, I can set you up with your own personal matinee. The museam has a decent sized collection of films on the coral, seaponies and other aquatic life.



Handling the bones by hoof was cumbersome, but not complicated. It gave Snowy Skies a few moments to dwell on what else he was going to do with his day. He did need to talk to Steel Flint, it seemed. He supposed she would appreciate brevity from him, whatever got him out of the room fastest. He would work on that. There was little else to do with respect to last night, wasn't there? Light Fantastic hopefully still had a neutral opinion of him. He didn't particularly care what Amber Spark thought of him. Static...wait. That was wrong. Something about Amber's quiet distaste for him irked him. How odd, given that he could brush of Steel Flint's open disgust. He would have to worry about that--

A little too lost in his thoughts, his hoof slipped, and a bone fell towards the floor. He instinctively grabbed it with his magic, flinching at forcing such a sudden deceleration...

Spoiler


"Come in!" called Light Fantastic.


Things seemed fine at first but when Snowy Skies went to move a larger piece into place, the whole thing came crashing down and several pieces cracked. A few of the other janitors glared at him. "*sigh* Looks like they aren't going to be stable enough to put back up. This hall is going to be closed off while another replica is made. For the moment, we're gonna have to clean all this up."


Anchors Away blinked in mild confusion, "I wouldn't want you to go to a ton of extra trouble. Besides, how would we get in after hours?"


Silky Double-Time walked into the room, "That dress looks magnificent! I don't know how your tailor does it."

Spoiler


The silent timer started to go off. Static walked over to the projector, motioning Anchors to come in. There's usually about an hour between the end of my last movie for the day and when the museum starts to close. He started the second projector and switched over so that the second reel was showing. It's usually time I use to clean up and get things ready for the next day. He put the old reel on the auto-rewinder and started it rewinding. But...and this is just between you and me...having learned to multi-task some of my errands, I can usually get things wrapped up in about 15-20 minutes. He set the silent timer and threaded the next reel in line. That still leaves plenty of time for one of the shorter vignettes. He comes back over to face Anchors. Which may be for the better, honestly. You still get some pretty great photage, a general overview of the subject matter...but you don't have to listen to the same narrator drone on for so long.

Like I said, tonight's kinda bad...but if some night...it's up to you.



Light Fantastic gave a little twirl, and grinned at Silky.

"She most certainly does," she said.


"Your bluff lacks power for it to reap,
What will you do when no longer...
"


The outskirts of Night Cap's mind hear a shrill note that results in him waking. He finds himself in the middle lying of the floor of a large, empty storage room. A stallion looks on, unammused. The same stallion who gave him the interview for STOMP. "I was wondering when you would wake up. Do you request to speak with the Chief Director or do you have other matters to attend to?"


Anchors Away pondered for a bit,
"Yeah, that sounds nice. I'm not local but I'll be here a few days. We'll have to figure out a good day."


The stallion looked Night Cap up and down, then walked towards the door,
"With your physical capabilities, would it be swifter to take the stairs or the lift? We're two floors down."


Silky Double-Time seemed hesitant, then asked,
"Sorry to pry but what happened yesterday? Whatever it was seemed urgent."


Really? Great! That's...sure. After tonight, hopefully things should settle down enough it should be easy to choose a day. Great! I look forward to it. Static shuffled his hoof. So...umm...great!

"Now what?" he thought to himself. He didn't want to send her away now. Heavens no! But he pretty much said everything that needed to be said. So...what now? He shuffled his hoof again. You know, any time you wanna come by...well...you see how much down time I get between reel changes. I certainly don't mind company.

Then it dawned on him and he perked up suddenly. Oh...not local? I just caught what you...so you're only here for a few days then? His face turned slightly downcast at the thought of her leaving. Umm...so...how long are you here for? I mean, few days I know...but...

Static sighed, feeling rather lonely again even with her right there.

 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
"There was an incident involving the Anugypt Strut," said Light Fantastic, "Nothing really major, but it was very tiresome."


Snowy Skies grimaces, rubbing his horn and not making eye contact with the harsh faces around him. "Right." He says softly, moving to grab some cracked bones.


Silky Double-Time gasped in shock, "Nothing major? But...if something happened to the Anugypt Strut there could be an international incident!"


Anchors Away laughed,
"Wow, you sound so disappointed. Only three days but I travel a lot and I could always wind up assigned here for something else."


The stallion started walking with a swift pace. Looking back at Night Cap he said,
"Stairs it is. Make sure you keep up."


Dusty Winds flew over to Snowy Skies,
"Are...are you sure you can handle this?"


Well, any time you come back, let me know. Mean time, how about we plan for tomorrow for the show...you know...barring any COIN invasion or apocalyptic catastrophy?


Snowy Skies' grimace deepens. "This skeleton seems determined to ruin my life, it only seems right that I put it to rest." He says quietly. "And if I break any more of it at this point, does it matter? So yeah, I'll be fine. I'm just turning some stuff over in my head right now."


"Tomorrow sounds good. Should I bring snacks or would that be too much?" asked Anchors Away.


Static winced. I...wouldn't want to make any more work for the janitorial staff...or keep them here longer than normal. If you have snacks that can be kept clean, I don't see any problem. We may want to avoid messier things like popcorn and nachos though.


"Yes, but we were able to keep it safe, so everything went well," replied Light Fantastic.


Silky Double-Time breathed a sigh of relief, "Well that's good. I'm guessing that griffin out there flashing his badge helped?"


Anchors Away's face scrunched up, "Bleh, don't like either of those. Tell you what, I'll bring something but only a small amount so there's no mess. What's a date without something to eat?"


The stallion spoke no more as he and Night Cap traversed one flight of stairs. Upon reaching the top and stepping out from behind an obscured bookshelf, "Will you need directions to the Chief Director's office?"


"I don't know if any more of the skeleton can be salvaged. Besides, making more of a mess means even more to clean up. But if you say you're okay, then that's good. The more hooves, the better."


Static smiles, as only a face that was totally un-used to smiling could. Self-consciously he caught himself and tried to force it back under control. Sounds great! he said.

The timer started to go off again. Static started the next reel rolling, loaded the played out reel on the rewinder got the next reel ready and reset the timer.

He then invited Anchors over to the movie shelf. So what would you like? Coral, sea ponies or...wait...breezies? That's not right! Static removed one of the reels from the shelf and put it on a different shelf where it belonged. Seems I'm not the only pony using the theatre for after work viewing. Don't feel so guilty now.


"Yes, good. It won't happen again." Snowy Skies says, looking around for a broom to clear up the dust. Except if it does. He adds silently.


Silky Double-Time shook her head,
"No, I mean the griffon out in the lobby. He came in with you, right?"


Anchors Away looked over the shelf, then politely shook her head, "Maybe not sea ponies but otherwise just...surprise me. I gotta go but I'll catch you tomorrow."


"Very well, you shall be escorted." The stallion and Night Cap walked to Brisk Iron's office. Upon knocking and waiting with no response, "It seems we will need to find her."


Realization dawned on Light Fantastic.

"Oh, him," she said, "He was just my escort today. He's really nice."


"See you then."

Static sees her out then turns back to the shelf. She specifically noted liking coral. Coral vids were a bit a dozen. But Static saw one in particular that seemed to fit the bill. It was short enough to a post shift viewing. But it also showed some of the more rare varieties of bio-lumiinescent deep-sea coral. For a museaum film, especially a short one, it had actually gotten some acclaim for the quality of footage and being less boring than most museaum films.

Still, it was a museam film and Static had seen it several dozen times. Near the end of its run, he had even gotten to the point where he would sub-contiously start quoting it as he watched it. He swore he would never...ever run this one again since it was past its viewing schedule. Still...this was for Anchors.

He nodded, satisfied he'd chosen the right film, then returned to his projector. He still had time before the end of the current reel...several endless hours before the end of his shift. He was okay with that. At this moment, he was on top of the world.

 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
I've already covered the carousel of Amber and Rhapsody missing each other at every turn so I didn't duplicate it, but it happens here.

Someday I'm going to go through this thread and make a table of contents so it's a bit more readable.
 

Shadewing

Active member
Citizen
I've already covered the carousel of Amber and Rhapsody missing each other at every turn so I didn't duplicate it, but it happens here.

Someday I'm going to go through this thread and make a table of contents so it's a bit more readable.

While reading this, I was thinking that at some point; someone needs to try and put it into order as much as possible. Maybe one day I'll get around to making stories of the other seasons based on what we have here.
 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
I'm at the point where I really could go in order. Season 1 is gone and the first day of season 2 is choppy, but from the second day onwards I doubt there's going to be any big sections missing.
 

Shadewing

Active member
Citizen
Well, I linked earlier to the story version of Season 1 I released, so that still exists in some form
 

Caldwin

Lifer
Citizen
RE: Skivey's sister

I really wasn't sure if Static was serious about meeting Skivey's sister at the stallions club or not...or even if Skivey had a sister at this point. But when the nightclub scene actually started to happen and I had to come up with characters quickly, I came back to this and it just had to happen at that point.
 

CoffeeHorse

*sip*
Staff member
Council of Elders
Citizen
If we can tamper with the Nighthaze setting at all, I want to live in the future where Skivey's cafe became a top tier megacorps. It was the only place that somehow never seemed to change any of the recipes after the apocalypse and it became a sensation.
 
Top Bottom