Vinyl woke up with a start to the sound of heavy retching. She frantically looked around and found Octavia missing from their bed. She quickly rushed out of bed and threw the bathroom door open. She found Octavia leaning over the toilet, heaving the contents of her stomach into the bowl.
"Octy, what's wrong!? Was it dinner!? Oh Celestia I KNEW I shouldn't have thrown in that new seasoning!" She said, doing what she could to hold back Octavia's mane, stroking her back to alleviate the pain.
"Urgh...this must be...m-morning sickness..." Octavia said weakly, feeling another wave surging to her throat.
Vinyl winced slightly as she heard the noise of body fluid hitting porcelain. It was one thing to see somepony lose it after drinking so much, but to see Octavia in such bad shape wasn't exactly easy.
"Oh...if that's all, then I guess it isn't so bad..." Vinyl shrugged.
Octavia shot her a look that could have made the Princess herself back away.
"...Considering that it wasn't the food, you know? I mean, this just means the foal's growing, right?" Vinyl chuckled sheepishly, trying to make light of the situation.
Octavia coughed a few times, sliding off the toilet bowl. She slid her hoof down the handle, flushing the contents away. Vinyl helped her to her hooves, and stayed nearby in case she needed help moving.
"I...I am alright now, Vinyl. Thank you..." She said, grabbing a cloth and wiping her face. She threw the dirty cloth in the hamper, and slowly moved back to the sink to brush her teeth and get the horrid taste of vomit out of her mouth. After a small period of silence, Vinyl spoke once more.
"I'm sorry...about all this." She said, her voice sincere. "I didn't think of the situation it would put you in. I just wanted us to have a night of fun, y'know?" She sighed, feeling terrible for putting her marefriend through it all. Octavia spit out the toothpaste and wiped her mouth.
"It is far too late for apologies." She said, raising her chin and shutting her eyes, feigning disinterest. She only slightly opened one eye to see Vinyl's expression, and chuckled inwardly when she saw one of genuine concern.
"You will just have to prove how sorry you are by being a good parent." She winked, giving Vinyl a small kiss and a nuzzle as she trotted out of the bathroom.
Vinyl blushed, a small smirk making its way across her face. "Yeah...that's fine."
"Anyway, are we ready to go see your parents? We were slated to leave by nine, and it is already seven thirty." Octavia reminded, moving to the bedroom mirror and beginning to comb her mane.
The happiness that Vinyl was feeling from the kiss and the nuzzle quickly disappeared at the mention of her parents.
"Ugh...I'm SO not looking forward to this." She muttered, her expression showing severe irritation.
"Oh, come now Vinyl. I am positive they will be ecstatic to see you again. I know I would be if our son or daughter came by to see us after moving out." Octavia said, focusing on getting a particularly difficult knot out.
"Yeah, you'd think so right? Believe me, the day I left was a happy day. I'd never felt so free in my life. Good riddance, get me?" Vinyl said, puffing her chest out with an air of indignation.
"You cannot truthfully mean that, Vinyl." Octavia said, sounding a bit shocked. "I am certain your mother and father miss you terribly, and would love to see you again."
"Yeah well, we'll find out soon enough, won't we?" Vinyl muttered.
The couple trotted through the main walkways of Echelon Gardens. Octavia had never once set hoof in Echelon Gardens, because only those of nobility or great prestige were allowed in. Vinyl was able to prove to the crossing guard pony who she was after arguing with him for ten minutes and threatening his safety a few times, and the two were on their way.
Echelon Gardens looked like paradise. The walkways were paved with marble, the trees that lined the streets appeared like they were groomed and manicured every day. Even the air seemed to filled with a certain regality to it, as if it were processed and refined somewhere in the gated community. Several other ponies were seen walking around, all of which were dressed in clothing Octavia was sure cost more than her apartment...each.
The houses were quite the sight to be hold. Most were either small mansions, or homes Octavia was certain could rival Princess Celestia's castle; however, she herself had played for the Princess several years in a row at the Gala, and was entirely certain that none of these homes could be as elaborate as the Princess' castle.
Vinyl, however, looked like she had eaten several sour candies at once and had been kicked in the flank a few times. She could hear the ponies muttering about her, as well as feel their eyes boring through her.
"I HATE this place." She muttered bitterly. "It's stupid, boring, and so uptight you can't even breathe properly." She then felt a pair of eyes as a colt that was standing nearby stared at her curiously.
"WHAT?!" Vinyl said forcefully, startling the young colt. The colt blushed and hurried off, obviously embarrassed and frightened that he had been caught.
"Vinyl! I am surprised at you. I understand that you are not exactly pleased with the idea of visiting your parents, but that is no excuse to be rude to others." Octavia chastised.
"I don't care. I hate this place, I hate the ponies IN this place, and I want to leave as soon as possible." She muttered.
After several minutes of walking, the pair finally arrived at Vinyl's home. "This is the place..." Vinyl muttered as they arrived at the gate. She looked over at Octavia, and face-hoofed.
Octavia's eyes were wider than Vinyl had ever seen; wide enough that the violet in her irises had disappeared. Vinyl's home was MASSIVE, even in comparison to the other homes they had passed on the way there. The garden infront of the mansion was about the size of one home they had seen when they entered, and the home itself extended in ways Octavia thought impossible prior.
"Alright, you've seen my house, let's get this over with already!" She said, visibly annoyed. They walked up to the gate, and a small pad with a green light that glowed softly.
Vinyl placed her hoof on the green pad, and the machine clicked a few times.
"IDENTITY CONFIRMED AS: VINCENZA STACCATO." Octavia giggled at this, still finding Vinyl's proper name rather comical.
The gate opened, allowing entry. "WELCOME HOME, VINCENZA." The machine said once more, falling silent a moment later.
The two walked down the path towards the front door, Octavia completely stupefied by the beautiful garden that lay on both sides of the path. Gardener ponies moved gracefully through the foliage, tending to and caring for each and every flower and branch in the garden. It completely boggled her mind why Vinyl would EVER want to leave such a place.
They came up to the front door, and Vinyl knocked a few times, receiving no answer.
"Nrrgh..." She groaned, knocking again, still receiving no answer.
"NNNRRRGHH." She fumed, banging both hooves on the door, to no avail.
"NNNNRRRRGHHHHHHHH!!!" She raged, banging on the door as hard as she could.
"WOULD YOU PLEASE CEASE THAT INFERNAL RACKET!?" A voice said, the other half of the door already open. The butlerpony had a jet-black mane that was slicked back over his head, his eyes a soft rouge. His coat was a pale white, and he wore a black pinstripe suit and had a teapot for a cutie mark.
Vinyl stopped, and blushed for a moment. "Heheh...sorry..."
The butler looked her over, and after a few moments, turned pale. "L-L-Lady V-Vincenza?! Is that- Is that really you!?"
It was then that the voice of the butler suddenly became familiar. "Yes, Sebastian, it's me. Are Mom and Dad home?" She said, her expression falling flat once more.
The butler shook his head, unable to shake the new image of his mistress. "Y-Yes...they are, but please, Young Mistress, do not tell me you plan to meet them with...that kind of mane?!" He pointed his hoof directly at her, obviously worried about how his masters would handle her electric-blue mane.
"Look, Sebastian, I don't CARE what they think of my mane, now let us in!" She yelled, getting more and more upset by the moment.
"Us?" Sebastian looked over at Octavia, who was busy looking around at everything, taking in the sights. It took him a moment, but he recognized her. "You! You're Octavia Philharmonica! I daresay the Master finds your music to be most pleasurable." He said, taking a bow.
Octavia felt her face heat up to the point she was afraid she was going to pass out. "R-R-Rolando St-Staccato enjoys m-my music!?" She mumbled, almost unable to contain herself.
"Oh, most certainly. Do come in!" Sebastian responded, backing away so the two could enter.
The foyer was quite possibly one of the most ornate entrances to a home Octavia had ever seen. The mahogany staircase shone from the polish, and the candles and teak furniture gave the mansion an inviting, yet antique and beautiful appearance.
"Where is he, Sebastian?" Vinyl said, desperate to get it over with.
"He is in his study, Lady-"
"There is no need, Sebastian. I was alerted by one of the guards who was watching through the security cameras." A voice said. The voice was firm and loud, and definitely masculine.
From the top right of the staircase, a tall stallion with a grey and black mane appeared, wearing a robe that was almost certainly the finest silk money could buy. His eyes were an ice blue, and on his flank rested a violin, his calling in life.
"Hello, Vincenza." Rolando said, staring directly at his daughter.
"Hello, Dad." Vinyl said, staring right back.