Fallout Equestria: Rolling Bones
I let my head rest against the crenellation, with my legs and wings draped over either side of the parapet. From my perch atop the turret of the sandstone wall I could see the entire fort.
Easily my favorite spot in the entire compound, it gave me the one thing I couldn’t seem to get anywhere else. Privacy. Sometimes that could be the most precious commodity. Three flights of narrow stairs ensured that nopony would bother me unless they really wanted to. Of course there was a cost. Everypony knew exactly where to start looking for me if I was needed.
I turned my head away from the early evening sun to look out over the compound. Most of the yard was taken up by a mess of nearly identical white or blue tents, staked in even rows, broken up by the occasional open area where ponies could gather in small groups. There were only three places that ignored the pattern.
Just inside the front gate was a large pathway that led to the Wagon Depot in the back. Taking up about an eighth of the fort, the Wagon Depot was where old train cars were brought in to be converted into the more versatile wagons that we used for caravans. Immediately to the left of the gate was the large mess tent that could fit about a third of the Watchers at a time. Most of the other tents positioned on either side of the entrance road were designated for the majority of the medical work that we did.
Wiggling deeper into the crenellation, I put my forehooves behind my head and made myself comfortable. The colored lines that had been cluttering my vision since the day I snapped the PipBuck to my leg disappeared as my eyelids slid closed. I was left with the quiet warmth of the soon to be setting sun and a cool breeze slipping through my feathers. Nap time.
I had everything I wanted at the moment. Peace, comfort, quiet, and privacy. My breathing evened out and my heart rate slowed as I began to drift into a contented sleep. I should have known it was too good to last.
“Hey! Sevens!” screamed an overly happy mare.
“Gah!” I replied, rolling off the parapet and onto the inside of the turret in surprise.
“They’ve finally released the assignments for the new expedition caravan teams,” she continued as though nothing had happened. I pressed down on my heart with my forehooves as it beat against my chest. Days like this made me wonder why I bothered having friends. It was almost like they did things specifically because they knew that I didn’t want... them... to. Oh... right.
I could hear whispering. That was never a good thing; those two whispering never ended well for me.
I sat up. Leaning over the edge of the parapet just enough for me to see my two friends on the ground below me. Aloe, the small yellow unicorn, was standing next to Hurdles, the red giant of a stallion, who was crouched down and being surrounded in a light blue glow.
Hurdles launched himself up into the air. A levitation spell, provided by Aloe, reducing his weight so much that he shot up like a rocket. After clearing the lower battlements his ascent began to slow. The look on his face as he realized he wasn’t going to reach the top of the turret was priceless. Flailing like a mad pony he managed to snag a hoof on the bottom edge of the battlement. He hung there with his hind hooves digging at the stone searching for purchase.
I fell backwards. “Bwuhahahahaha!”
“Damn it, Lucky,” he said, his hooves scraping at the stone. “A little help here?”
I fought down the laughter and wiped tears from my eyes with a wing, “You should’a seen your face! You were all like, ‘AH!’” I did my best imitation of his expression, mouth and eyes as wide as they would go. “Hahah, priceless.”
“Hardy har har ha-,” his forehoof slipped an inch. “SHIT! Lucky!”
“Alright, alright. You’re no fun, you know that.” I peered over the edge, “Aloe, you think you can keep up your levitaty magicy thing? I don’t want to pull a muscle trying to get this big lug down.” With a nod of confirmation from Aloe I took to the air and flew behind the stallion. My hooves slipped under his shoulders. With our bodies pressed together I couldn’t help myself. “Mmmmm, I’ve always wondered what it would take to get this close to you.”
Hurdles twitched and lost his already tentative grip on the battlements. The sudden shift apparently caught Aloe unprepared and her levitation spell imploded.
The extra pony and a half of weight proved too much for me. “Horse-” We dropped like a rock with feathers glued to it.
Hurdles cried in pain as we slammed into the ground. I was more fortunate; Hurdles broke my fall.
Hurdles rolled on his back and, because I was still holding onto him, me. I flailed and gasped underneath the mass of muscle and fur. My ribs creaked from the heavy pressure. I was being completely ignored by my two ‘friends’ as Hurdles moaned about something or other and Aloe pampered the big baby.
In desperation I beat at his face with my one free wing until he finally turned his head, “What?!” he screamed, his eyes watering.
There was a moment there where the pain dancing in his eyes was smothered by malice and I was sincerely worried that he wasn’t going to move. I was going to be slowly smothered to death! The little evil smile that had been tugging at the corners of his lips faded quickly though. With a heavy grunt he rolled off of me and onto his three good legs.
I coughed, sputtered, and groaned in relief. The limbs that had been so cruelly pinned between him and the ground began to tingle as blood flow returned. Aloe urged me up off the dusty ground to my hooves before pointing to Hurdles, “You’re going to need to set that before I can heal it.”
Looking over at Hurdles I saw the very obviously broken foreleg. I looked back at her before giving my head a small shake, “One of these days you’re going to have to be able to do stuff like this on your own.” I immediately regretted the words as her pupils began to widen, “But not as long as I’m here.” I quickly added with a smile, hoping to cut that beast off before it could get any momentum. I turned back to Hurdles, “Come on big guy. You know the drill.”
He nodded and held his leg up for me. I took it between my forelegs. “You’re lucky I think your legs are your best quality.” He frowned at me and I just smiled. “On three. One...” I let myself fall backwards.
“Two three.” I added with a smile while he tried to glare at me through the tears in his eyes.
Aloe pushed me out of the way and bent over the now set bone. Her yellow horn began to glow a light blue along with the previously broken leg. The light show was accompanied by a stomach churning grinding noise as the spell forced the bone into a better fit before it began the reknitting process. The earth pony ground his teeth and dug his other hoof into the ground. Even with magic broken bones aren’t fun, but at least he wouldn’t have to wait months to be able to walk properly.
Finished with her part Aloe gave him a stern look. “Do I need to tell you to go easy on it for the next few days?”
He shook his head as he got to his hooves and tentatively put weight on the leg. After pawing the ground a few times he looked back up at the two of us. “Can we go now?”
“Sure, big boy.” I turned around and swatted his face with my tail. “Lets go see what all this noise is about.”
I didn’t see the bright red of his face turn maroon, but I heard Aloe’s giggling and that was good enough. I did my best strut and prance as I made my way to the posting board. Hurdles grumbled something causing Aloe to giggle some more before they trotted to catch up. Even with Aloe walking between us he refused to look at me, which just amused me more. I did my best to keep my mirth in check. I knew his limits and when it was time to stop. I eyed them both as we walked. They would really make a great couple... if only one of them would make the first move.
The three of us pulled up short, our destination blocked by a tightly packed crowd of ponies. Standing flank to flank, they were all pushing forward to try to get a look at the announcement board.
“It’s finally up.”
“Do you know who’s being sent?”
“... na, I’m not even eligible, Junebug is due in three months.”
“I can’t see. Come on, move...”
“Thank the goddesses, I was worried...”
“This is ridiculous.” I turned to my companions. “You two stay here, I’ll be right back.”
Without waiting for either of them to respond I took wing. A single flap was enough to lift me into the air and another stroke pushed me forward over the heads of the crowd. My lips turned up in a small smile at the grumbles of the earth bound ponies as I coasted over them.
The press of the crowd seemed to be held back by eight staunch earth ponies at the very front. Each one had their forehooves dug into the dirt, pushing back against the herd. It took me a moment to realize that they were not so much holding back the crowd as they were trapped by it. Being unable to move forward or turn around there was little else they could do but hold the line.
I got the odd impression that there was something to be learned from the scene below me.
Shaking my head I refocused on the task at hoof. I spotted the list of names that everypony was so worried about and quickly scanned it. It didn’t take long for me to find the two names I was looking for.
“Aww, ponyfeathers.” A powerful forward sweep of my wings sent me careening back away from the bulletin board and the unfortunate ponies still stuck at the front of the group. I dropped to the ground on the other side of the crowd, rejoining my friends. “Well I’ve got some good news and some bad news.”
Aloe rolled her eyes. “Do you think he’ll ever stop using cliches?”
“Fine, then you can wait for the crowd to clear.” I started to turn away, extending my wings and preparing for take off.
“Uhg, fine. What’s the bad news?” Aloe pleaded.
“Hurdles has been assigned to one of the pull teams.”
A big grin split the stallions face, “Bad news? Bad news? If that’s the bad news then what’s the good news?”
I stepped up to the stallion, our muzzles only a hair’s breadth apart, batting my eyelashes, and said in a husky voice, “I’ll get to sit back and watch that tight flank everyday for the next four months.”
His lips contorted in disgust as a hoof pressed into my cheek. I stumbled to the side from the forceful shove. “Uhg, would you quit it already?” Hurdles moaned, before storming off.
The cat calls might have been a touch over the line.
My grin faded as my distraction left. I kicked a rock by my hoof and sent it sailing through the air. Aloe stepped to my side and leaned her head against my neck. I returned the show of affection with a soft sigh.
“Damn it. I don’t want to go.”
“I know. But they must have a good reason-”
“Like what?” I barked, cutting her off. “I mean there are a hundred other ponies who actually want to go that are at least as good as I am at sewing up wounds. I am just as useful right here as I would be out there,” I said, motioning outward with a wing.
“Well...” her voice drifted off for a moment. “Is that the job they assigned you?”
“Y-... shit, I don’t know. I wasn’t paying attention.”
I felt her shake against my side. “Oh, Lucky. Will you ever learn?” She pulled away and started following the path Hurdles had taken. “Come on, lets get dinner before those ponies realize what time it is.” I grunted in response and trotted to catch up to the yellow mare.
“At least you get to stay here, all nice and cozy.”
“Right,” she said dejectedly, “while you two are out galavanting across the Wasteland I get to sit here alone, waiting and worrying that something might’ve happened to you two.”
“There, there, now silly filly,” I wrapped a wing around her and hugged her close, “I can personally guarantee that there will be no adventuring, and galavanting is right out. In fact, I’ll do everything in my power to make this little excursion as boring and event free as possible. I’ll even write you a letter at each town to make sure you don’t miss out on a moment of our utter boredom.”
She looked up at me with those big puppy eyes. Those things really need to be outlawed. “You promise?”
“Cross my heart, hope to fly, stick a sugar bomb in my eye.”
“You’re the best, Lucky,” she said, finally smiling again.
“And you’re the best little sis a colt could ask for. Now come on, this is a big deal for Hurdles and he’s going to want us to be excited for him.”
“Speaking of which. You should really cut back on the taunts.”
“But he just makes it so damn easy and his reactions are so perfect! I can’t help myself.”
“What’re you gonna do when he finally decides not to take it anymore?”
“Get a hoof to the face I expect.”
“And you’re okay with that?” she asked, looking up at me with a worried expression.
“Eeyup.” She just shook her head as I chuckled. “And afterwards we can kiss and makeup.”
I spotted Hurdles waiting for us outside the mess tent and released my hold on Aloe. No need to give him any ideas. I loved the colt, but sometimes he could be a little slow on the uptake and quick to make stupid assumptions.
“So how are we going to celebrate?” Hurdles asked, way too excited at the prospect of going out to the Wasteland.
“You two can celebrate anyway you want. I’ve had enough excitement for today.”
“You spent the entire day hiding and avoiding work!”
“Exactly. Do you have any idea how difficult it is to avoid work? Now if you’ll excuse me I’m going to bed.”
I took off before either of them could raise an objection. If Hurdles had two wits about him he would take the opportunity to tell Aloe how he felt. Which meant that they would spend the rest of the day in awkward small talk and eventually go to their respective tents alone. I sighed as I stretched my wings out to glide; I didn’t like the idea of playing matchmaker, but this was getting ridiculous.
I rode a thermal to the upper flight ceiling before I pushed out and to glide aimlessly over the old fort. Up there I could forget the problems of the world below. If the tower was where I went to escape the ponies around me, the sky was where I went to escape myself. Focusing on the act of flying, every twitch of wing and feather. Unfortunately my flight couldn’t last forever. The sun was about to dip below the horizon and, unless I was greatly mistaken, the next few days would be busy.
Flying down to my tent I landed at a quick trot and didn’t stop moving until I was inside the canvas structure.
I hopped onto my cot and let my face fall into my hooves in over dramatic lament. With my eyes closed, I didn’t notice the pony stepping into my tent. I also wasn’t paying enough attention to hear the hoof steps. Indeed I didn’t notice anything until I felt a light kiss on my forehead.
“What seems to be the matter, Lucky?”
I raised my head enough to look over my hooves at Nurse Gray smiling warmly. I grunted.
The smile in her eyes faded. “I take it you saw the roster.” I nickered in response. “I know how much you don’t want to leave, but it’ll be good for you.”
“Good for me?” I asked. “How could traveling across the Wastes and worrying that at any moment a band of raiders are going to pop out of nowhere and start shooting, be good for me?”
She pushed a few stray strands of mane out of my face with a hoof, “There’s a lot more to caravans than raider attacks.”
“Oh yeah, I forgot about the Steel Rangers and radscorpions, thanks for reminding me.”
“Would you stop? You know that’s not what I mean.”
“I’m sorry,” I said, looking away, “It’s just... why me? There are plenty of ponies who would love to take my place. What good would I be out there anyways?”
Her expression turned incredulous, “You’re joking, right?”
“If I was joking, I would’ve said: ‘A horse walks into a bar-”
“If you finish that I will slap you.” My teeth clicked as they snapped shut. She glared at me for a moment before her eyes softened again, “You know this isn’t something we’ve done before. Nopony is sure what we’ll find on the other side of the Snake. There are rumors of everything from thriving pre-war civilization to nothing but raiders and everything inbetween. We are putting a lot of resources into this and nopony wants to risk walking in completely blind.”
She paused looking at me expectantly, her eyes flicking to my sides. It took a moment for me to figure out what she was trying to tell me. “They need my wings? They want me to fly out ahead of the wagons.” She nodded and I groaned, “Some days I wish I had been born an earth pony.”
She bopped me on the nose with a hoof. “Don’t say that. Most ponies would give a leg to be able to fly.”
When I looked up at her she quickly turned away. “Are you... jealous?”
A reddish tint began to shine through the grey of her cheeks, “N- no. I didn’t say ‘I’ would-”
A smile pulled the corners of my lips up. “You want to fly,” I said, almost accusingly. “You wish you had wings, don’t you?”
“No, I- if this is how you’re going to act-”
“You want to fly,” I said, cutting her off. “Just admit it.” She huffed loudly and turned to leave. Just as she was about to step out of the tent I spoke up, “I could give you a ride.” Nurse Gray stopped dead in her tracks. “I could take you up, fly over the compound a few times... nothing fancy...”
She slowly turned around, her eyes sparkling like a filly’s on her birthday. “Would you? Could you?”
“Could I? Could I?” I pressed my forehooves to my chest, “You wound me, m’lady. Now you don’t get a choice.” I pushed off the bed and wrapped a foreleg around her shoulders, “Come on, my pride is on the line.”
Outside the tent I glanced to my left and right. Unlike flying solo, I would need a good running start to take off, or else I would burn my flight muscles out just getting airborne. Deciding that the left provided the longest and clearest runway I turned and backed up a few paces.
After some basic stretches to prep my wings for the beating they were about to take I turned to my soon to be passenger. Crouching down I motioned to the older mare to come over. “Well, hop on.”
She carefully pulled herself up onto my back and wrapped her forehooves around my neck. I struggled to stand under the added weight. I wasn’t feeling quite so sure about this plan anymore.
“Wings?” I spread them to the max and gave them an experimental flick, “Check. Runway?” I looked down the open lane between the tents, “Check. *ksh* L-7 to control, L-7 to control, all pre-flight checks are complete, all systems go. Requesting permission to take off.” Gray looked at me like I was crazy. “Ten-four, we are a go.”
I began to trot between the tents feeling the cool evening air wash over my out stretched wings. As I picked up speed, slipping my gait into a canter, I began to flap. Slowly the weight began to lift off my legs. Speeding up to a full on gallop I pumped my wings faster until I was just barely touching ground. With a final heave I launched myself forward drawing my legs up. We were airborne.
Nurse Gray gasped and her forelegs tightened their grip around my neck as I made the first banking turn just over the tops of the tents. I leveled out I began pushing my wings to gain more altitude until I found what would likely be the last thermal of the day. Rocketing up into the air Gray started making the cutest sounds that were somewhere between gasping in fright and giggling like a school filly. I found myself laughing with her.
This was a side of her I had never seen before. For as long as I’d known her she had been so... grown up. It was like she was finally letting herself relax, allowing herself to enjoy the moment with foal like glee. She didn’t seem quite so old to me anymore. And with that thought, I became acutely aware of the warmth of her body pressed against mine.
Pushing those thoughts away I forced myself to focus on flying. I banked a hard left, going almost completely vertical and drawing another gasp of surprise from the mare latched to my back. As I twisted and leveled out, I turned my head to look at her. Her long grey mane coursed behind her in the wind. Mirth etched into her face, her eyes locked on the tents speeding passed below us. For the first time I took a moment to really look at her face. She wasn’t all that much older than me. Seven, eight years tops.
Stop it, stop it right there; turn around and focus on flying.
Our flight lasted about ten minutes before I banked a final time to line myself up with the alleyway I had used for take off. Normally I wouldn’t need anything of the kind, but with the weight of another pony it was much safer to draw out the landings as well as the take offs. I flared my wings to catch as much air as I could to slow myself down.
As I bled speed and altitude I began moving my legs to match the ground passing beneath my hooves. I touched down for a pace and bounced a few hooves back up into the air. This happened a few times until I decelerated to a speed my legs could keep up with. My hooves finally touched down at a strong gallop. I pulled back to a canter, then a trot, but didn’t stop moving until we were standing back outside my tent.
Finally came to a stop, I realized just how hard I was breathing. My chest expanded and compressed as I pulled air into my lungs. I crouched down as much to help Gray off my back as to rest.
She slid off my back onto her own shaky hooves, “Wow... that was... wow.“
I smiled and nodded as I pushed myself back up. Without a word Nurse Gray turned to the tent and walked through the open flaps. I felt the smile twist into a smirk as I watched her fla- I mean Cutie Mark. I shook my head to clear my mind before following her in.
Her eyes watched me enter from her perch on the bed. “That was absolutely amazing, Lucky, thank you,” she said, finally able to put more than two words together.
I stretched out, pushing my forelegs forward, arching my back and splaying my wings out as far as they would go. I cringed as a cramp flared up in my left wing causing the feathers to twist. I really hadn’t been physically prepared for that flight. Even after spending the entire day not doing anything, it had wiped me out completely. It is one thing to fly around all day; it is something completely different to carry around another pony. I wanted nothing so much as to lay down and sleep.
“Hey! What?” my legs wiggled helplessly in the air as I was lifted off the ground in a light grey aura. I eyed the mare responsible and crossed my forelegs, “What gives? I’m not a colt anymore, I can put myself to bed just fine.”
A devious smile touched her lips as she laid me on my stomach across the mattress. She didn’t say anything as she laid her horn against my wing. I felt the odd chill of her magic probing at the muscles beneath my fur. Making a tsking sound she placed her forehooves at the base of my wing and began working the muscles there.
“Oh, sweet Celestia that *f’naaaaa*.” My wing twitched as she pressed into the thick flight muscles, feathers ruffling and settling in response. Her hooves pulled back, only for her muzzle to bury into the feathers at the base of my wing.
“Oh!” I twitched. “That’s... uhm...” I twitched again. “That’s-” A feather pulled free and my eyes rolled back into my head. Her teeth raked through my plumage, straightening feathers. I tried, I really tried to tell her... but it felt soo good! Everytime I opened my mouth the only sounds I could make were moans and groans, gasps, and shuddering breaths.
She had finished preening my other wing before I could think straight. I clapped my wings to my sides and twisted under the mare to stop her from doing anything more.
Her normally well kept mane- still in disarray from the flight- hung loosely in front of her face. Ears quivering, she wore the cutest little smile highlighted by a slight blush on her cheeks. As I struggled to find words her eyes began to dilate and her lips to tremble.
She began to pull away at the same moment that realization dawned on me. My hoof hooked behind her head to stop her from leaving. Pulling her back down I lifted myself up until our lips touched.
The kiss only lasted a short few seconds before we parted. Nothing changed in those few seconds, but everything was different. She was still the same mare that had practically raised me from a colt, but now I saw beyond that. I saw the excitable, impulsive, filly hidden inside the responsible mare. I saw the young mare who still had a lot of life left to live. But more than that I saw the look in her eyes that remained after all that and more evaporated.
The second kiss started just as softly until I licked at her lips. She didn’t resist as I pressed forward, parting her lips and running my tongue along her teeth. A smile pulled at her lips. I felt along her teeth until they parted and her tongue met mine.
I dropped to the cot as we parted, both of us slightly out of breath. With a mischievous grin she pressed one hoof to my barrel and lifted herself up. Her horn lit up. My wings flared against the cot, forcing my back up off the mattress. She scooted backwards. My back arched as she lowered herself, small gasp escaping her lips.
I woke up to the smell of pony and roses. A mussed up grey mane tickled my nose as I took a deep breath to savor the sweet scent. For a time I didn’t move, content to simply hold the mare. My wing began to shift almost on its own, feathers moving across her barrel. She twitched. I smiled, sliding my feathers out to find another sensitive spot. She twitched again, her leg pawing at the open air. I stretched my pinion just a little further.
“Eeep!” Gray squealed in surprise.
I was sure I had gone too far until she began giggling and twisted around in my forelegs. Curling up against me she buried her glowing cheeks into my chest.
My wing adjusted to wrap around her back while my forelegs slid behind her shoulders and neck to pull her in tighter. Resting my chin on the top of her head I let my eyelids slid back down.
She mumbled something incoherent into my neck. I considered just ignoring it, but quickly fell to the middle ground of mumbling something just as incoherent into her mane.
Her head pulled back and forced mine to move from its resting place atop hers. I found myself muzzle to muzzle with a beautiful blurry eyed mare and didn’t even try to hold back my smile.
The soft whisper of her voices played across my lips. “It’s getting late, Love.”
My eyes flickered to the half open tent flaps letting in the glow of the early morning sun. The question of why they weren’t closed all the way was swept away when my mind registered exactly what she’d said. I wasn’t caught off guard, my heart didn’t skip a beat, and I didn’t feel a rush of emotions. Rather I looked into the eyes for the mare I was holding, the mare I had been holding all night, and everything just felt... right.
“Five more minutes?”
She gave me a little smirk. “Sure, Love, five minutes.”
Her head returned to my neck, nuzzling against it until she was comfortable.
Five minutes was not nearly long enough.
“I’m sorry, but both of us have responsibilities.”
“They can wait.”
“Five more minutes, right? Then how many more after that?” she asked, but continued before I could respond. “I know where it is going and as much as I would love to indulge you, I can’t. And- Mmmmf!” She didn’t fight back at first, allowing herself to enjoy the kiss. Eventually, though, she pulled back and held me in check with her magic. She tried to compose herself, even so she couldn’t banish the smile stretching her lips. “Now would you kindly let me go?”
I smiled evilly, my grip tightening around her. “Eenope.”
She let out a small sigh before her exasperated expression quickly changed to one that bordered on malicious as her horn lit up.
“What’s this no- Eek!” Her magic pinched a rib causing me to twitch. “Heeheehee, that is so not- Eek! Hahah, cut tha- Eek! Out!”
“Do you surrender?”
“NEVER!” I bellowed, squeezing her tighter.
“Can’t say I didn’t warn you.”
I heard her hooves hit the ground on the other side of the mattress. There was little I could do about it as I struggled to breath between spasms and fits of laughter as her magic flashed across my barrel.
“Tsk, tsk, so ticklish.”
“Heehee, you are so- Hahaha, going- haha- down. Heeheehee!”
She trotted to stand over my prone form. The assault halted as she bent down and kissed my forehead. “We’ll just have to see about that. But until then you could use a shower, especially with all that rolling around in the dirt. See you later, Love.”
The moment she pulled away the attack picked right back up where it had left off. I was little more than a gasping, laughing, and twitching pile of pony until she disappeared outside the tent. When the magic finally ceased I was left panting for breath on ground.
I didn’t move for a minute as I caught my breath and calmed down. Even after all that I knew that I could easily climb back into bed and go back to sleep. I hadn’t gotten much sleep after all.
Lifting my left foreleg I looked at the PipBuck’s clock and cursed. Breakfast or shower, I didn’t have time for both. A quick glance at what used to be green fur was all I needed to make a decision.
The trip to the bath tents was... odd.
I moved through the fort at a quick trot passing by any number of ponies going about their chores for the day. I nodded to them as I walked by with a smile and a wave or a word of greeting. The expressions they threw my way almost made my smile falter. Some gave me a confused or surprised look, returning the greeting by rote. While others had this knowing smile that rubbed me the wrong way. I quickened my pace.
It was late enough in the morning that most ponies who wanted to wash up already had; so finding the tent devoid of other ponies was welcome, if not entirely surprising. The eight showers were divided into two groups of four. Each group was on a platform raised a hoof above ground level. A post at the center of each group held the copper piping for the shower heads in place. The individual showers were divided by old plastic drapes hanging off metal frames to provide some modicome of privacy.
Sitting under the shower head of the nearest stall I bit down on the chain hanging from the faucet and pulled. A torrent of icy water poured over me sending shivers up and down my entire body as it pushed the dirt out of my fur and feathers. With my mane hanging in my eyes I let go of the chain and the water stopped. I blindly reached for the long bar of lye tacked to the back of the stall. My hoof scraped a chunk off and I began to wash myself. With a wing I clicked on the PipBuck’s radio.
A catchy tune filled the shower as I worked the soap into my fur. Too busy reminiscing about the night before I started to move with the music, scrubbing my mane and stepping in time with the notes.
“Na na na naa, I can take it. Throw your stones and you won't see me break it. Say what you want, take your shots. You're setting me free with one more da da da daa. Na na na na na. Da da da daa. Na na na na na na.”
The torrent of water cascaded over me for a second time, the lye washing away into the large drain by the central post. I released the chain at the sound of another pony stepping into the tent and switched the radio off. Balancing on my hind legs I pulled myself over the low wall to see who had come in.
Seeing my friend walk in I couldn’t help myself. “Damn it, now I’m going to have to start all over again.” Hurdles just glared at me. Wiggling my eyebrows may have been going a little too far, but I figured he wouldn’t understand the joke without a little help. His only response was to step closer. My face drooped into a frown. “Humph! You’re no fun,” I said, as I started to turn away.
I didn’t see the hoof, but I sure felt it. When my vision cleared I found myself on my side in the corner of the stall. The taste of blood tainted my tongue. I pressed a hoof to my sore face and worked my jaw. Something small and hard click between my teeth. Spitting I watched the white tooth bounce against the ground and roll toward the drain.
“Damn it! That hurt! What’s got your nuts in a vice?” I asked as I got to my hooves. But he was already gone. “Sure. That’s a great way to handle your problems!” I shouted to the empty tent. “Punch somepony in the face and just walk away. Real mature.” I pressed a hoof to my cheek only to pull back.
Celestia’s horn that stings. I hope one of the doctors has a spell that can fix this. What the Hay was his problem anyway. I mean, sure I might have gone a little far... what am I saying, that was hardly the worst I’ve done. The least he could have done was give me some warning. Or maybe bothered to explain himself. What am I going to tell Gray? She is going to be pissed... or laugh... or both. When I see that-
“Ah, Lucky, I see you decided to grace us with your presence today.” The familiar voice pulled me out of my thoughts. Blinking, I realized that I was just outside the medical tents at the front of the fort. “I hope you’re not neglecting your beauty sleep for us.”
“No no no,” I said, turning to face my black maned antagonist. “It’s no trouble at all. Indeed, my conscience would not let me rest knowing that these poor and unfortunate ponies would be in your hooves if I were to stay in bed.”
“Celestia forbid that anypon- what happened to your face?” the grey unicorn asked, something that almost sounded like concern in his voice.
I rubbed at the bruise with a pinion. “I slipped in the shower.”
He frowned, obviously not believing me. “Right... you have tent one today.” The enmity returned in a flash. “And I expect you to remain there for the entire shift this time, Sevens.”
I bowed deeply, flaring my wings as my chin neared the ground. “As you command lord dock-tor.”
He snorted as I spun away and pranced toward the tent. Stepping inside, and out of his sight, I let my head droop. Wonderful, the day I need magic and I get Echo. There was no way in Tartarus that I would go to him to get my tooth fixed. Hopefully Aloe would stop by sometime today, I needed to talk with her about Hurdles anyways.
Stepping briskly toward the cabinet against the left wall I began pulling open drawers. Using my wings I shuffled through the contents. I would have been nice if somepony could have been bothered to sort and organize them.
Stepping over to the gurney, I placed my tools on the side tray and flopped down on the stretcher. With a flip of a hoof I toggled the magic lamp and positioned it and a small mirror over my mouth. Opening wide, I did my best to examine the missing tooth. The bleeding had stopped almost before I left the showers and there was a nice bright red scab over the empty socket.
Taking a small applicator between my pinions, I dipped the cotton in the alcohol and brought it up to my mouth. Tears stung my eyes as the fresh scab dissolved under the cleansing liquid. Bitter blood and stinging alcohol mixed on my tongue. Placing the red stained applicator back on the tray, I picked up a second one. After swirling it in the topical anesthetic, I dabbed it carefully in and around the empty socket. The pain that had been bugging me all morning slipped away until it was little more than a dull throb.
Finished with my ministrations, I twisted the mirror around to examine my hoofwork. The bleeding had stopped again with a slightly cleaner looking scab. Still, I would need to have it checked out by one of the doctors. Until then at least it didn’t hurt anymore.
“*Cough* Uh, Doc?”
I pushed the mirror and lamp up, tilting my head to see the pony who had stepped inside. Her outfit gave away her chosen profession. “If you prefer,” I said with a smile. “What seems to be the matter?”
My time on shift was uneventful, a few ponies with minor ailments, but mostly fools. A number of ponies were brought in after being beaten to shit by the casino bouncers. It never ceased to amaze me how ponies acted once they got a few shots of liquor in their systems, my own actions notwithstanding. At least I had the sense not to repeat my mistakes. These ponies were regulars at both the casinos and the compound.
A few broken bones, some sutures, poultices and bandages were the order of the day. Only one pony required a healing potion for internal injuries; he was really quite fortunate, the casinos response to cheaters usually ended with a six foot hole in the ground.
After wiping the last of the blood off my hooves I was ready to leave. It was getting dark outside by the time I trotted out.
I took a moment to sit down outside the tent and stared up at the cloud wrapped sky. I could see the glow of lights from the center of Dise in the edge of my vision. Not for the first time I wondered what it was like above the clouds. It may sound silly for a pegasus, but the sky above the clouds was a complete mystery to me.
Unlike most pegasi in Dise, I was not now nor had I ever been a part of the Remnant. I managed to avoid military service only by the grace of the Watchers. My mother had been a part of them until she was discharged for reasons I never knew. The Watchers took me in before the Remnant ever knew I existed. I am told that when they found out there was an attempt to ‘collect’ me. Nurse Gray would have none of it though. I don’t know how she managed to get them to back down, but I am eternally grateful for it.
I sighed and lazily took to the air, flying back toward my tent. It had been a long day and I was tired. The night air felt good rushing through my feathers and distracting me from my own thoughts. That only lasted until I began the descent to my tent. The sight of the canvas structure and the feel of the wind along my wings brought memories of the previous night front and center.
My wings locked out and I dropped like a stone. Falling through the air I was saved by instinct alone. I managed to curl up into a tight ball and hit the ground rolling. I tumbled through the dirt coming to a stop sitting on my haunches.
Gripping my head in my hooves I waited for the world to stop spinning. Once everything began to finally settle down I opened my eyes and froze. Sitting patiently on my bed was a very sexy grey pony.
“Now that’s what I call an entrance.”
Of all the ways that I have been woken up, there is only one that I would like to repeat.
Gray pulled away far too soon leaving me with little more than the taste of her lips on my tongue. “So are you going to tell me what happened to your tooth, or am I going to have to pull it out of you?”
For a brief fraction of a second I considered lying. That was quickly thrown out as a bad way to start my day. My next thought was to try to deflect. “Me and Hurdles-”
“Hurdles and I.”
“-had a... disagreement. He thought I would look better minus a tooth, I disagreed.” I smiled wide, displaying all my teeth. “I still think I was right.”
“Lucky...” She gave me The Look. How I hate The Look.
My face fell. “Look, I don’t know. I was taking a shower and he came in and he’s got a wicked left hook. He didn’t say anything. Just walked in. POW. And walked back out.”
“And you didn’t say anything to him?”
“I might have said something.” Damn those eyes! “Yeah, I poked at him a little. No more than usual though. And he was angry already. I think he was intent on it anyways, like it didn’t matter whether I said anything or not.”
“You need to go apologize to him.”
“WHAT?! But he’s the one who hit me! He’s the one who should... be... you’re really going to do this aren’t you?” She nodded. “That is soooo not cool. We’ve only been together for two days and you’re already pulling that? Gah! You’re so lucky that you’re a sexy, flexible, smart, wonderful mare or this would be so over already.” Her embarrassed laugh and blush told me that even though I had completely lost, I had still scored points. I stretched my neck to kiss her forehead just below her horn before rolling off the bed and onto my hooves. “You win this round, m’lady.” I bowed my chin to the ground and flaring my wings. “But we shall meet again, this I swear. Until then I bid you good day.”
I pranced out of the tent with my nose pointed high in the air... I stumbled over a tent stake.
Despite Nurse’s threats I didn’t go looking for Hurdles right away. I decided that some recon was in order. I needed to find out what had got the stallions loins in a girdle before I tried to patch things up with him. There was only one mare I could think of that could help me with that.
Aloe was a rising star in the Watchers. Her natural affinity for healing spells made her invaluable. If it weren’t for her complete aversion to blood and viscera she would be half running the place by now. As it was Clean Cutt had her working the tents nearly everyday attempting what he called immersion therapy. I was more than a little unsure about it, but it did make it easy to know where she would be any given day.
I poked my head into the first medical tent. To my irritation neither pony inside was the yellow coated blue maned filly I was looking for. The gray stallion with a clipboard floating in a brown aura looked over his shoulder at me before turning back to the pony sitting uncomfortably on the stretcher.
“To what do I owe the ‘pleasure’ of your company today?” Echo asked, managing to inflect the quotes.
A wing slid under my necklace to scratch an itch as I glanced around the tent. “I’m looking for Aloe, have you seen her?”
His knicker of disappointment caught me a little off guard. “No. She hasn’t shown up yet-”
“You heard me. I’m filling in for her, so if you do find her please send her over won’t you.”
“But Aloe’s never played hookie before-”
“There’s a first time for everything, Lucky. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to get back to doing her job.”
“Uh, yeah... sure,” I said, ducking back out of the tent.
I opened my wings to take off and begin searching for Aloe from the sky. Fortunately a flash of yellow in the corner of my eye caught my attention quickly. Turning my head I spotted my adopted sister stepping back into the fort from the streets of Dise.
“Aloe?” I called out. Relief washed over me. At least I wouldn’t need to go searching for her now. With a pump of my wings I coasted over, landing beside her. “You’re okay! I was worried, you weren’t working and Echo said you never showed up. Anyways, Hurdles punched me yesterday and... and... why are you looking at me like that?”
At first her eyes had been wide in surprise, but as I spoke everything changed: brow furrowed, tail lashing at the ground, jaw set, ears folded back. For what felt like minutes she just glared at me. I tried to ask what was wrong, why she was angry, had I done something? None of those questions made it past my lips. Her glare was making it impossible for me to think. She had been mad at me before, sure, but never like this. Not even after that time I put anesthetic in her perfume bottle.
“I’m not talking to you,” she said in a tone so level that I knew she was raging inside.
She threw her head into the air with a sniff and started to walk away. I watched as she put distance between us. This would not do. I could deal with Hurdles being mad at me for no apparent reason; all he needed was time to cool down and realize he was wrong. But this, I couldn’t just let this pass. I took off into the air and dropped directly in her path forcing her to stop short.
“What’s wrong, sis?” I asked, my voice squeaking like a colt’s despite my determination.
She recoiled as though I had struck her. But she still refused to say anything and tried to step around me. I side stepped to interpose myself and block her path. When she tried turning the other way I leapt into the air again and hovered in front of her.
“What is going on? If this is some new game it’s not funny!”
Huffing in frustration her horn lit up in a light blue glow. I felt the tickle of kinesis wrap around me and force me to the side. I growled at the insulting act and spun out of the spell. I had had enough of this.
I flew right in her face, muzzle to muzzle. “Oh, no! You don’t get to do that! You’re going to tell me what I apparently did to deserve being treated like this!”
Our eyes locked, both of us trying to will the other one to break first. I won... I think.
Her stare faltered as her eyes began to water. “You... you... you took her flying!” She looked down. Her ears wilting as her hind legs fell out from under her, dropping her haunches to the ground. “I... I saw you. And- and Her! Flying.” She sniffed back a sob before continuing. “I thought maybe I- you would give me a ride. I ran to your tent...” She trailed off for a moment fighting back the tears, “I heard you and ‘Her’,” she said, the word dripping with venom. Unheeded tears rolled down her cheeks. Her hoof swung out and snapped my head to the side. “I- I hate you!”
I tensed in preparation for the next swing to hit the already injured side of my face. It never came. Her expression moved between hate and pain until she spun around and galloped away, deeper into the compound.
I dropped to the ground with a dull thump. I wanted to follow her. To chase after her and comfort her. But I couldn’t. My mind refused to work. I couldn’t do anything as I watched her disappear behind a tent.
I was pacing. My ears twisting to every sound while my feathers ruffled constantly. I didn’t know where else to go. I wasn’t sure what Aloe would do if she found me waiting for her at her tent and Hurdles was right out. Nurse Gray... I needed to talk to somepony with an outside perspective.
“What’s got yer bit in’a bind?”
I turned to face the ghoul lounging on his mattress. “Celestia damn it, Tracker. Would you stop doing that?”
“‘s not ma fault yer deaf an’ blind.” I dropped to my haunches, placing a hoof against my forehead. Before I could open my mouth he asked, “What’s wrong colt. Ya look like somepony bucked a hay bale out from under ya.”
“What’s a hay bal- uhg, never mind.” I dropped backwards, flaring my wings just enough to make sure I landed softly on my back. “I don’t know what to do.”
Mirth lightened his voice. “Heh. Do ya ever?” I whined back. “Heh, you came ta me, buck. Yer gonna have ta be more spersific if I’m gonna be able ta help.”
“You know about the caravan?”
“Aye, Ah saw it. That all this is about.”
“No, but that’s where it started...” He listened quietly as I related the events of the past couple days. I told him about the flight with Gray, though I glossed over some of the details, and Hurdles and Aloe. Finishing I craned my neck to look at him from my position on the floor. “...then I came here.”
Tracker motioned to me with an almost skinless fetlock. I rolled up to my hooves and crossed the tent to stand before him. He took my chin between his hooves and forced my jaw open. Tilting my head around he examined my missing tooth. “Kept it clean?” I nodded as best I could. “It don’t look too bad, but ya get it looked at by one of them doctors before ya leave,” he said, releasing me.
“Ya got yerself in quite a pickle.”
“What’s a pickle?”
“It’s a- never mind that. Ya know, back when Ah was yer age Ah was quite the looker.” I held my tongue. “Don’t gimme that look. Before Ah lost most a’ ma fur Ah was prime breedin’ stock. Had mares near throwin’ themself’s at me. Course, it mighta’ been the uniform. Either way me an’ this mare were, heh, ‘testin’ the waters’. Nothin’ serious, mind ya. Well me an’ da’ boyz wen’ out one night ta a local salt lick. There was this cute little filly and, heh, one thing led ta ‘nother. Woke up in the wrong bed...” The old stallion trailed off, his eyes sliding off to the side and losing focus.
I waved a hoof in front of his face. “Uh, Tracker?”
“Huh? Wha’?” He blinked a few time, his eyes swiveling back to me. “Oh, where was ah?”
I groaned. “You woke up in the wrong bed.”
“Right, right. Well, Ah got ta know the filly. Found we had a right lot in common. Didn’ take long fer me ta realize that Ah got on wit her a heap better than the mare Ah had been seein’. So Ah talked to ’em. Things worked out ‘ventually.”
I waited a few seconds for him to continue before I spoke. “Soooo... you’re saying I should sleep with Aloe?” I asked, squinting at the ghoul.
“No, ya stupid colt! Ah’m sayin’ ya should figure out which one ya love and stay with ‘er! Ya already know both o’v’em, so all ya have ta do is decide. Celestia preserve us, Ah raised ya better than that colt.”
“Right, cause ‘Lets just be friends.’ Ever worked for any pony ever.”
A corner of his lip tried to turn up in a smirk. “I did say ‘‘ventually’... still better than the alternative.”
I draped a foreleg across my eyes and fell backwards again. “When did everything go wrong, Tracker?”
“Heh, somethin’ like two hundred years ago, colt. Fer ya though? Ah’d say ‘bout the time ya’s born.” The mattress squeaked as he slid off. “‘Fore Ah forget, there’s somthin’ Ah wan’ ta give ya.”
I dropped my leg off my face and twisted so that I could follow his movement from the corner of my eye. He stood at the hoof of his bed looking down at the old brown hooflocker. With a swift kick the top popped open. Dipping his muzzle inside he rooted around muttering to himself. After a moment he found his prize. Hanging from between his teeth was an old brown leather shoulder holster. After Dropping it on the bed he unsnapped the quick release and drew the pistol.
I recognized the pistol. He had shown it to me a number of years ago, well, ‘shown’ might be a strong word. ‘Scolded’ might be a more apt description. This was his baby and as far as I knew he had never let another pony lay a hoof on it before. After calming down he told me that he’d picked it up on his first mission during the war. Kept him alive until the day the world burned.
“Ah always meant ta teach ya how ta shoot, though it don’t seem like that’s gonna be an option now,’ he said, the pistol not getting in the way of his speech at all. “Git off yer flank an’ come over here so Ah can at least give ya some pointers so ya don’t shoot yer own hoof off.” I jumped to my hooves as he laid the weapon down on the mattress. “Now the first thing ya need ta know is that this ain’t yer standard pistol. She don’t fire bullets...”
“Don’t wait ta talk ta the girls. Ya ain’t gonna help yerself putin’ it off.”
“Yes, sir,” I said, shifting under the unfamiliar weight of the shoulder holster. The pistol itself was actually positioned on my upper foreleg where it could be drawn with ease. The holster was held in place by a loop around my foreleg and a strap that crossed my barrel. A set of four gem packs stuck out of the strap along my chest for easy access and quick reloading.
Evening was coming on when I finally left the ghoul’s tent. I stood in the cleared area just outside with my wings spread. The cooling evening air slipped through my feathers as I tarried for no particular reason. Boredom and hunger finally drew me into action and I pushed off into the night.
I watched the tents pass below me as I made my way through the open sky. Movement off to my side caught my attention. I pulled to a stop, hovering in place. One of the large caravan wagons was being pulled out of the depot toward the gate. Hovering there I watched as the first converted train car slowed to a stop and the two ponies harnessed to the front detached themselves to return for the next one.
I shuddered for no particular reason before resuming my flight. All I wanted to do at that moment was drop off Tracker’s gift and head out to grab some food.
Alighting outside my tent I rushed inside and went straight to the hooflocker against the tent wall. The buckle on the strap released easily and the holster fell to the ground. Gripping the leather in my teeth I dropped it into the open container. Free of the weapon I turned to leave once again, only to stop at the sight of my bed.
A black coat, that was likely very nice a long time ago, was neatly laid out on the cot. I stepped closer. A folded piece of paper was tucked carefully into the front pocket. A comb fell out of the note as I pulled it from the pocket. I eyed the comb for a moment before opening the note.
Meet me at the gate. Wear the suit. Use the comb.
“What are you up to?” I asked the empty tent, putting the note back down and snagging up the comb in a wing.
The poor thing did it’s best, but it wasn’t designed for a mane like mine. After five minutes of fighting knots and tangles I cast out the now defunct comb. At least I could say I tried.
Clothes weren’t something I was used to wearing, but even I knew that this jacket didn’t fit properly. The sleeves were wide and short, not even reaching my PipBuck. The collar was also designed for a much wider neck. But worst of all was the lack of holes for my wings. I wouldn’t be flying tonight. Sliding the leather thong of my neckless under the folded collar I was finally ready to leave.
I trotted past the exam tent, turned towards the front gate, and stopped, suddenly feeling very underdressed.
Nurse Gray was standing beside the long red painted steel wagon. Her mane was done up in long grey curls that seemed to bounce with the slightest movements of her head. Her tail was hidden by a long black skirt with silver embroidery that cascaded down her flanks, seeming to float just above the ground. The silver needlework on her black saddle and bodice glittered in the early evening light.
It took me a moment to realize that I had stopped moving. Mentally bucking myself I continued forward.
Gray turned to me, her face lighting up. Closing the last of the distance we nuzzled, resting against each other’s neck. She wore a subtle perfume of roses, only enough for a pony next to her to smell.
“You look beautiful,” I said, pulling back.
“And you look... better. Did you even try combing your mane?”
“I did,” I said, turning up my nose. “It broke.”
She sighed, though the smile never left her face, and ran a hoof over my mane. “I guess there’s nothing to do about it.” Pecking me lightly on the cheek she nudged me towards the gate.
I decided to ask the obvious question. “So, where are we going?”
Her cheeks blushed slightly, an embarrassed smile tugging at her lips. “Well, I realized that we skipped a step... or three... and I thought it would be nice to fix that.”
“Oh, hehe. So it’s a date then?” I asked. Before she could answer I put a hoof to her chest and brought her to a stop. Turning to face her I put on the most serious expression I could muster and presented my hoof with a bow. “Would m’lady acquiesce to grace me with the pleasure of her company on this fine evening?”
Her embarrassed smile was smothered as Gray touched a hoof to her barrel taking on a similarly serious expression. “I may be so inclined, my good sir. But what, pray tell, would you have us do, were I to accept your generous offer?”
“Why, darling,” I said, still bowed, “it would be my proposal that we attend to The White Horseshoe to sup, followed, thereafter, by a walk through the beautiful streets of our fair city, Dise.”
“Dearest Lucky,” she placed her hoof on mine, “what a marvelous idea. I do believe I shall accept your proposal.”
“Marvelous.” I kissed the top of her fetlock. “Onwards and Upwards.”
She broke first, shaking as she tried not to laugh out loud. “You’re something else, Lucky.”
I slid next to her as we started moving again. “I learned from the best.”
The trip through the streets of Dise was nice. It was almost as though all the vagabonds and druggies had left to wallow in other parts of the city. Even the abandoned buildings didn’t look quite as desolate as I remembered. Then again, I was a little distracted by the mare pressed against my side.
Until a large red mass of muscle and fur nearly bowled me over.
“Hay!” I yelled as I got back to my hooves. “Watch where you- Hurdles?!”
He didn’t respond as he slowly sat up. He blinked a few times before shaking his head and looking around like he was lost, his eye green eyes unfocused and distant.
“Uh, Hurdles, buddy? You in there?” I poked a hoof at the sitting stallion.
Gray stepped up beside me. “Hurdles, darling, are you alright?”
His eyes found mine. The lost look faded away, replaced by a growling in the back of his throat.
Shit. I stepped back, almost tripping off the curb. “Hey... buddy...”
“This is all Your fault!” He screamed, lunging for me.
I cringed back. My forelegs rising to protect me as best they could against the impending onslaught.
I peaked through my forelegs. A smile cracked my lips. The blue and white maned stallion was struggling fruitlessly in a sphere of grey magic a few feet off the ground. I looked over at Gray, her horn glowing brighter than I had ever seen it.
“Hahaha! Wooh. That was close. I thought for sure he was going to pound me into glue.” Nurse Gray grunted in response. “Oh. Uhm... shit... what’re we going to do with him?”
She growled, her lips pulling back in a grimace. Her horn flared brighter and a flash of magic shot from it, impacting the floating stallion. All of her magic unceremoniously disappeared dropping the unconscious stallion to the concrete.
I quickly took a few more steps back ready to turn tail and sprint back to the Watchers.
Out of the corner of my eye I notice Gray stand up straighter, taking long deep breaths. “You *huff* obviously didn’t *huff* apologize yet.”
“Well, I couldn’t find him.” That was not entirely untrue. “And then with everything that happened with Aloe and Tracker I didn’t-”
“Wait. *Huff* What happened with Aloe and Tracker?”
“Oh... right... heheh...” I felt the blood drain from my face. “Well ya see...”
By the time I finished she was laying on the ground trying to hide behind her forelegs. “I’m never going to be able to look her in the eyes again.”
I nuzzled the top of her head. “It’s not that bad. We can still fix things.”
“You’re leaving tomorrow. Or have you forgotten?”
“No.” Shit. “Well, that just means that I’ll be able to deal with Hurdles when he isn’t two sheets to the wind and you can find a way to get through to Aloe.” I turned to the pile of fur still sleeping on the sidewalk. “Speaking of which, how long is that spell going to last? I don’t really want to be around when he wakes up.”
“With how much alcohol is in his blood? He won’t be up till tomorrow.”
“Oh, good,” I said, turning back to Gray. “So, off to dinner...” She glared at me though her hooves. “Or we could take him back home, that works too.” I looked back down at Hurdles and knickered. “This sucks.”
Footnote: Level Up!
Speech: Journeyman (50+)
Love and Tolerate: Maybe you take Love part a bit too literally. You now have access to special dialogue options with anyone who enjoys the company of stallions. (There is no combat bonus from this perk.)
Tracker's Blaster: Due to constant loving maintenance this weapon is might as well be brand new. (increased DMG and Durability)