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The Demonstration

Caramel let out a bedraggled sigh. The muted music from down below was an indicator of only one thing. Once again his boss was shirking her responsibilities to tinker in her workshop. He made his way down the stairs, clipboard in hand, and put his hand on a scanner next to the door at the bottom. He braced himself for the inevitable blast of loud music which would greet his ears once the door opened. The music hit him like a tidal wave, as he stepped inside and turned towards the radio mounted on the wall, lowering the volume to something a little less deafening.

“Hey?! What happened to my music?!” The other pony inside, a cyan pegasus popped out from behind the single engine plane she was working on. Her expression changed from anger to bored once she caught sight of Caramel. “Oh. It's just you.” She ducked behind the plane again and continued to work. “What do you want Caramel?”

“I just want you to know I’m considering finding a new job,” he said rather bluntly as he neared Rainbow Dash.

“Why? What’d I do now?” asked Rainbow Dash, as she pulled pieces off of the engine to the plane. Her hooves and face were covered with a generous coating of engine grease and oil and the black t-shirt and jeans she wore seemed to be permanently stained. Her mane was unkempt and it looked as if she had been up all night. Which she had.

“You’re still here,” Caramel said, motioning towards the workshop, his voice betraying his frustration. “You’re supposed to be on your way to the test site to demonstrate the UAV.”

Rainbow Dash rolled her eyes and grumbled. “Oh that. Can’t you do it? I’m a bit busy,” she said as she continued tinkering with the engine. She moved a hand around, apparently feeling around for something. “Say Caramel…hand me the eight millimeter wrench please…”

Caramel let out a sigh and leaned down to pick up the small wrench on the ground handing it to the blue pegasus.

“Here, and as for this project,” he motioned towards the chariot. “You can finish that later. This is an important business deal and you’re just here tinkering. I know that thing works you were flying it yesterday. Now can you please get ready?” he asked, his voice terse.

There was a pause as Rainbow looked up at him, pouting like a five year old. Caramel simply looked back down at her, keeping his expression stern. She actually looked rather cute with her pout and the grease on her face. Finally, Rainbow let out a long over dramatic sigh.

“Fine,” she said annoyed, getting up and setting the project aside for later. She made her way over to the bathroom on the other side of the room and started washing the grease off of her hands and face. Caramel following close behind her. “I don’t get why we can’t do this here. I have enough space outside to do the demonstration.” She said as she continued to rub off the grease from her arms and face, motioning towards the nearby window. Caramel casually glanced out of it, to be greeted by the open air of the skies above Equestria.

“Because not all of the ponies attending are pegasi,” he said flatly.

“Well neither are you and you’re here,” she pointed out, splashing water on her face and motioning towards the cloud floor below their feet.

Caramel paused and glanced down at the cloud beneath his feet. The only reason he was standing here right now and not plummeting to his death was because of several cloud walking spells that came as part of his job as her secretary. Thank Celestia for unicorn magic, he thought. “I’m paid to be here,” he finally said as he shifted his focus over to the papers on his clipboard. “Speaking of which I have some documents that need your signature. Mostly stuff for the R&D department and a notice of vacation,” he said, holding out the clipboard and a pen.

Drying her hands on a towel, Dash raised an eyebrow. She took the papers and pen and went through them. “Who’s taking a vacation?” she asked as she started signing, not really paying attention to what was written on the papers.

“I am, for the weekend,” Caramel said. “I figure you’ll be up north for a few days for the demonstration and signing off on sales, so I decided I’d take some time off,” he finished. “Get my feet on solid ground for the first time in a few months.”

Rainbow looked up from the papers and smirked. “Oh so that’s why you’re mad. As long as I’m still here you can’t leave, is that it?”

“Yes actually, so let’s get you on your way,” Caramel said, smiling as he took the clipboard back once Dash had finished signing everything.

“Fine, I’ll see ya when I get back. Don’t redecorate while I’m gone,” the mare said as she walked out the door.

/////////////////////////////////

Spitfire let out an annoyed sigh as a familiar plane landed near the private jet she was standing in the door way of. The smaller plane's engine shutting off once it had stopped. Rainbow Dash climbed out wearing an expensive suit and started towards the stairs leading up to the jet.

“You know I honestly thought you’d take me seriously when I agreed to be your liaison for the military. I don’t know why, but I did.” the yellow mare said glaring at her friend.

Rainbow Dash simply shrugged as she walked by. “I think I remember you offering to take the job, because you felt bad about the accident,” she pointed out once she had reached the door leading inside the airship. “I don’t know how many times I’ve told you it wasn’t your fault, but any complaints you have about your job are on you,” Rainbow finished.

“That doesn’t mean you have to try to make things difficult,” Spitfire countered as they entered the aircraft and closed the door. “You always try to pass your responsibilities onto Caramel so you can just sit in your workshop all day tinkering,” she said, trying to be stern.

“He’s my assistant, isn’t that his job or something?” Rainbow questioned, taking a seat near a window. One of the flight attendants left in the direction of the cockpit to let the pilot know they were ready to go.

“No. His job is to assist you with your job, not do it for you,” Spitfire countered, taking the seat across from Rainbow.

“It’s the same thing,” Rainbow argued.

“No it isn’t,” Spitfire assured the other pegasus. “But that’s beside the point,” she said before Dash could make a retort. “Let’s get some work done. Why don’t you read me your presentation speech?”

“I didn’t write one. Figured I could just wing it,” the cyan pegasus said off handedly, looking out the window with a bored expression on her face.

Spitfire gaped at this. “You know what, that’s fine. When your dad cuts off the funds for your personal projects, then you might understand that the company isn’t just there to put money in your pocket,” the fiery maned pegasus said, throwing her arms in the air and giving up trying to reason with her companion.

“Ooh, I’m shaking,” Rainbow said sarcastically, as she whipped out a pen and started drawing designs for her next project on a napkin.

///////////////////////////////////////

The rest of the trip passed uneventfully, with neither of the two pegasi speaking as the jet made its way towards the northern border of Equestria. They eventually landed at an airport at a military base the near northern border of Equestria, which was mostly a barren wasteland. Perfect for testing and demonstrating new technology.

Rainbow was introduced to several important ponies from the equestrian military, not that she’d remember any of them the next day. They took a short drive by motorcade to an area far enough from the base that nopony without authorization could see the demonstration, escorted by at least a dozen armed soldiers. It would be bad for business if the designs for new Dash technology were leaked to the competition.

After a short set up they were ready to go. Rainbow Dash, sporting a pair of stylish sunglasses, took one last sip of the drink she was drinking and trotted up in front of the group of military personnel. Clearing her throat, she began.

“Gentlecolts, I have for you today the next great step in aerial recon,” she spoke into the microphone, her voice echoing across the empty terrain. “For far too long we have put our brave mares and stallions in harm’s way for missions that only require looking at a situation. So what is the point of sending soldiers into danger just to do a camera’s job?” Rainbow asked rhetorically. She paused, as if awaiting a response. “Well quite simply, there isn’t one. So without further ado,” she said pausing at the sound of jet engines approaching, “may I present,” she paused again as everypony in the group in front of her turned to the west as an object came hurtling towards them.

“The Phoenix,” she said dramatically as the object whizzed by barely twenty feet above the heads of the spectators blowing hats off of several heads. It looked like a small plane, but there didn’t seem to be a seat for a pilot. “The first in Dash industries line of unponied aerial vehicles,” Rainbow concluded, earning several gasps, oohs and ahs. The Phoenix did several acrobatic stunts before zooming off in the direction of the base.

“How is it controlled?” asked the General of the Equestrian Army, General Hurricane.

“Remotely,” Dash answered. “The pilot for this one is sitting in one of the cars behind you,” she continued pointing in the direction of one of the armored vehicles. “Anypony interested can place an order now. The paper work should have been sent to you with the invitation to the demo,” she informed, walking over to a table off to the side of the group and taking a seat, anticipating hours of signing her name on documents.

Spitfire approached from the back of the crowd, a pleased look on her face. “Not bad for a last minute speech, but try to be prepared next time,” she said, looking around at the gaggle of military ponies who chattered amongst themselves ecstatically, obviously impressed by the demonstration.

Rainbow smiled a smug grin. “I’ll try, but you know how busy I usually am,” she pointed out.

Spitfire rolled her eyes. “Yeah sure. I’ll see you back at the base. I for one am exhausted,” she said walking back to a vehicle that was preparing to leave.

“Sure thing, see ya later.” Rainbow called out to her as she trotted away.

Half an hour later Dash was half dead from boredom. She was still filling out orders for the Phoenix as the demonstration had caused quite a positive reaction amongst the representatives. A rumbling sound caught her attention all of a sudden and she turned to see another armored car join the rest. She raised her eyebrow at this distraction, trying to figure out who it could be, as she herself had arrived rather late for the demonstration in the first place.

She felt her shoulders sag when she saw her father, Comet Dash, exit the vehicle dressed like any other buisness pony, his gaze immediately finding his daughter at the table.

She let out a frustrated sigh as he walked up to her. “I don’t need a baby sitter,” she said defensively.

“Really, cause I hear a different story,” he countered, looking rather unimpressed. “You should have been done with this,” he motioned towards the dozens of contracts on the table. “hours ago. And you would have been if you had been on time,” he said his voice now laced with disappointment.

Rainbow Dash grumbled. “Well I’m sorry I don’t have time, seeing as how I’m always making new things for your company,” she retorted, eyeing the older unicorn with disdain.

“Our company.” He replied pointedly. “You’ll be inheriting it. So long as you remember not to bankrupt us,” he told her, annoyed.

Rainbow was about to respond when suddenly a distant boom caught her attention. “What was that?” she asked.

“Hit the deck!” shouted one of the soldiers standing guard.

Before either of the Dashes had a chance to react, there was a thunderous explosion as one of the armored cars exploded in a shower of sparks and flame. The force of the blast sent them backwards several feet, with the two of them slamming into the ground with force. Panicking Rainbow tried to get up, but a tremendous pain lanced through her chest and she fell back onto the ground, unsure of what to do.

Gunshots could be heard as the soldier ponies tried to fend off the attackers. She heard somepony rush to her side, but couldn’t see who, as her vision had begun to blur. The unknown pony was shouting something that she couldn’t hear in her fading consciousness.

///////////////////////////////////////////

Rainbow’s mind was addled as she began to come around. She could still feel the pain in her chest, but it was duller than before. The first thing she noticed was the feeling of her legs being dragged along the ground, a set of clawed hands holding her arms as they dragged her through the tunnel.

“Get the boss. We have the ponies,” a voice shouted from her left. She groaned at the noise grating against her sensitive ears. The sound of footsteps and a door opening reached her.

“Sir, they’ve returned. The mission was a success,” a nervous voice said.

“Finally. It’s about time you Diamond Dogs did something right,” the leader said, their voice sounding like it was being electronically distorted. More footsteps could be heard approaching and then somepony gasped. “What did you morons do?!” shouted the leader, causing Rainbow to wince. Her ears were still ringing from the explosion earlier, and this random pony’s shouting certainly wasn’t helping. To Rainbow he looked like a white blur.

“W-we brought you the pony,” one Diamond dog said hesitantly, sounding like he was confused.

“You idiot!” the white blur hissed. “She’s half dead! How are we going to get her to build us a weapon if she’s dead?!” the white blur asked dragging a grey blur into Dash’s view. Before any of his cronies could make an excuse he continued, “Just get her to the doctor. I want her alive,” he said, glancing at the cyan pegasus as Rainbow’s vision slowly shifted back into focus. “Oh she’s coming around,” he said, sounding amused. He then brought a fist down on her head, making the world go black again.

Author's Note:

So I figured we'd get to the point with this one, but don't worry after this chapter we'll be taking our time and produce a good story.

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