To say Filthy Rich was on edge was an understatement, a more apt description would be sick with anxiety. Ever since his conversation with Diamond Tiara, old feelings had been resurfacing. The gut wrenching disgust in himself for not being able to help the mare he vowed to spend the rest of his life with, among others.
In a vain attempt to distract himself he buried himself at the office, intentionally taking on more work than he could handle. Technically as the C.E.O. he didn't have to do any meeting with potential clients. But Bruce had called in a personal day and the other reps employed there were in Filthy's humble opinion, little more than mewling kittens only recently weened off the tit of higher education. A fancy way of saying they were qualified but without much real life experience.
Sitting in front of him was a very nervous couple fresh out of college themselves by their look. They were pitching a tech startup with some prototype, something to do with molecules or the like. He didn't really care what it was at the moment, he'd have Bruce take a look at it latter on, he was much better at this techno stuff than he ever would be. In the end this was just a distraction, anything to keep from thinking about the inevitable phone call.
And he knew exactly how it would start-
Hastily he picked up the receiver and raised it to his ear, "Filthy Rich speaking."
It was exactly what he'd feared, "Mr. Rich, this is Doctor Redheart at Our Lady of Kindness general hospital."
"H-how can I help you d-doctor?"
"It's about your wife Mr. Rich." He knew it, something had happened. She'd hurt herself or somepony else while she was running free and now it was to late.
"Please tell me she's alright, oh Celestia tell me she's alright."
"That's why I'm calling Mr. Rich, she's just now regaining consciousness and she's asking to see you."
That was odd, he thought if anypony she'd want to see Diamond, or as she called her 'Die Tie.' "I suppose I should get down there now, she can be pretty unruly with ponies she doesn't recognize."
"Actually Screwball is quite calm, confused but calm. Right now she's anxious to talk to her husband."
'Husband?' Filthy let the phone drop from his hooves, his face went blank. "I-I'm sorry, I'm going to have to cut our meeting short. You understand don't you?" Without waiting for them to leave Filthy had already gathered his coat and hat and was nearly out the door. The hopefuls tried to pry his attention to show off one more feature but he couldn't be stopped.
Before he knew it he was standing outside the hospital, how he'd gotten there was a complete blur. He remembered little things like the valet getting his car and parts of the drive over but his mind was focused only on the words of the doctor. Her husband.
When he arrived the receptionist showed him to the room, oddly enough it wasn't on the psych ward as he was expecting. Filthy didn't know what to expect, what shape she'd be in or what to say, nervously he pushed the door open.
He couldn't have been prepared for what he saw. Sitting calmly on the hospital bet with the little leeches attached to monitor her vitals, Screwball was being interviewed by the mare who ran the asylum. She wasn't screaming or rambling like a lunatic, she was just acting like any sane pony would.
"Screwball, is that really you?"
Inside the confines of Rich manor a similar reunion was taking place, Bruce with his longtime marefriend. He was just now getting home lying on the bed and currently leaking blood all over it. Silver was there with needle and thread, suture and bandage, gauze and antiseptic. Though never trained in medicine she was quickly becoming a well versed armature doctor.
Deftly the needle passed in and out of his torn flesh, pulling it together to mend. "So, are you going to tell me how it happened?"
"I got shot with my own grappling hook." The needle paused in it's work as Silver's hoof trembled, once she calmed herself she resumed the surgery. "I also lost the jet."
"Jesus Christ Bruce!" Silver shouted, the words didn't have any real meaning to Silver, only that Bruce occasionally used them as an exploitative. "You have computers on that jet, flight recorders! What if somepony gets in there and finds out who you are? Who took it anyway?"
"Don't yell at me. I know who has it and it's safe, for the moment anyway. It's under lock and key in the Cloudsdale impound. I'll just use the remote pilot to take it back."
"Oh right, nothing suspicious about a jet plane flying off into the sunset on it's own. And what are you planning to do about that big ol' flesh wound huh? Let's see what was it, did you cut yourself shaving?" There was a certain amount of vitriol in her words, something he wasn't quite used to.
"Oh and what would the great Silver Spoon suggest, hmm? Maybe I should just climb under a rock for a couple of weeks?"
"Don't patronize me! You think just because you go flying around the city in a Nightmare Nights costume that makes you better than me?"
"Yes, well to a certain extent yes. I'm going out and saving ponies lives, what do you do all day? Shop?"
"Shopping! Why you slimy little- Do you even know what I do all day? Huh do you?" Bruce was about to retort with, 'of course I know because of the tracking devices.' But he decided against that. "Half my time is spent just trying to keep your sorry excuse for a social life from imploding in on itself. Every day I have to explain away why you can't be bothered to appear at charity functions or why we had to turn down a personal invitation from the princesses to the Grand Galloping Gala."
"To be fair honey the gala had nothing to do with me being Batman, it's just a boring party."
"Oh I'm sure Princess Luna would be interested to hear you say that."
"Is that a threat?"
"I don't know, I thought nothing could get under the skin of Bruce Wayne."
"I know the one pony who can." Both their eyes locked and their breathing became heavy, their little shouting match had sparked something else entirely. "I'll get the wine!"
"I'll get the socks!" The two darted from each other, only to reconvene upstairs in the master bedroom. Bruce arrived with a bottle of pinot in hoof along with two glasses expertly balanced on his nose. Silver was already waiting on the bed, bright red silk stockings covered her from hoof to thigh. "What took you so long?"
Their conjugation was sweet as it was swift, to say it was long overdue would be unfortunately accurate. After the asylum directer Fluttershy had left, convinced that she posed no threat to anypony for the moment. Both Filthy and Screwball became overwhelmed by the nearly three decades apart, he slipped the nurse on duty a few bits so that they would be undisturbed. Though a hospital bed was hardly built for that sort of thing it served their purpose.
A few minuets of sweet motion and they could feel the pleasure washing over them like waves of the sea, pulling away the years as if they were in their twenties once more. "That was, wonderful." Filthy sighed.
"Kinda kinky too, when you think about it." Screwball said from her reclined position, "Reminds me of when we used to sneak back to the store room of Barnyard Bargains to do it."
"Remember when dad walked in on us? I swear we almost gave that old goat a heart attack."
"Where is that sack of- Well you know. Where is he nowadays?"
"He died in hospital about fifteen years ago, of heart attack ironically. I'll let you know he stayed true to himself to the bitter end."
"So a cantankerous bastard who only cared for himself?"
Screwball smiled with satisfaction, Dirty Rich had always been nasty towards her, even threatening to have her deported if she didn't leave Filthy. Not that she believed for a moment that the old codger had that kind of pull, still such things just aren't done. "So who else am I going to find missing the next time I stroll down memory lane?"
"Oh, all the ponies you'd expect. The old guard, the fire fighters and the drinkers, though would you believe old Granny Smith is still kickin'?"
"From the Apple Family? How old is she? I swear she must have been in her seventies when I was just a filly." Her satisfied smile transformed into one of comfort then it became tinged with nervousness. "Filthy can you take me home now? I know it looks like I'm calm right now but inside this place is making me crawl. I can't stand the way everypony looks at me, like I'm about to jump them if their not careful."
"Well, only yesterday that would have been the thing you'd be suspect of doing."
Filthy took his wife's hooves in his, "Dear, how much do you remember, about anything before waking up in this hospital?"
"It's all a blur. I can remember little bits, like you coming to visit and that one awful doctor and and, Oh FILTHY I remember the nightmares he gave me!"
"I know dear, everypony now knows what Dr. Crane was doing to the patients. Rest assured he'll never be allowed to hurt you or anypony else again. You're to thank for that." If she didn't remember then he certainly wasn't going to tell his traumatized wife that she stabbed him in the eye effectively lobotomizing the monster. "I'll try to getting you discharged right away."
"And then we can go home?"
"Well... Home is a bit different from what you remember."
"Don't tell me you lost the manor. I loved that place ever so."
"No no, Rich manor is still in the family. It's being lived in by the kids now."
"Kids? As in plural? Is there something I should know Filthy?"
"Ah, no you misunderstand. It must have been about fifteen years ago, I took in an orphaned colt named Bruce. Now it's him and our little Diamond who have the manor."
"Well that's noble of you." She drew silent for a moment as the sad reality dawned on her, "I suppose our little girl is all grown up now. And I was never there for her."
"Now don't you fret darling, Diamond turned out just fine. She might be a tad bit temperamental at times but she grew into a beautiful, talented and intelligent mare. But you don't have to take my word for it, we'll be meeting her in business park later on today."
"Are you sure? I don't know if I'm ready for this. What if she hates me? Or doesn't want to-"
"Shh, she's going to love you. Your her mother and the pony she's be wanting to know her entire life. And I'll be there with you the whole time. Now, lets see about getting those discharge papers done already." Filthy got up off the bed and exited to hospital room, not before giving her one more gleeful smile. While Screwball didn't share his same optimism she had to admit, she couldn't wait to meet the pony her baby had become.