• Published 13th May 2012
  • 49,213 Views, 8,112 Comments

Austraeoh - Imploding Colon

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“Hello, Rainbow Dash,” a mature, blue-maned mare said with a smile. “I am Mayor Evergreen. Though I may be late to the party, as it were... heh heh... I do whole-heartedly welcome you to our town of Ridgeside.”

The two ponies shook hooves on the edge of a second-story balcony overlooking the center of the bustling village. A spray of clouds drifted through the afternoon sunlight overhead as Rainbow Dash then took a step back and smiled.

“Wow. Every pony I've met so far is really dang friendly. Even up to the head of the city council!”

Evergreen smiled. “I wouldn't rightly be a representative of my own town if I didn't share the values of every pony I look after.” She and Rainbow Dash paced slowly around the cylindrical exterior of the building. “I must say, you've made quite an impact on this place.”

“Heh. Some impacts don't involve flying straight into the ground like a meteorite, I guess.”

“In all seriousness,” Evergreen remarked. “It's been a long time since we had a visitor of your standing, much less one that's been so helpful.”

“Helpful? Pfft. I just felt like curing boredom and a bunch of your guys' chores were in the way.”

“You've done nothing but bless this town and help immensely in beautifying it. You've done more in a single day that most of us can accomplish in weeks.” Evergreen smiled at her. “If that's what you call boredom, I shudder to see what happens when you're having fun.”

“That's when mountains explode,” Rainbow Dash said with a wink.

Evergreen chuckled. “Somehow, I don't doubt that. Is it true that you come from a place called Equestria?”

“Heh...” Rainbow briefly dug at the floor with her hoof. “Word sure does get around in this town.”

“When someone like you comes along, you can believe it.” Evergreen glanced at her. “Knowledge of the world beyond the mountains isn't entirely lacking, Miss Dash. Mostly traders and merchants from the south carry word of a place that serves as the heart of the world, where the Cosmic Goddesses reside. It doesn't surprise me that such a realm would be home to all kinds of ponies, especially ones as unique and unforgettable as you.”

“There are only a few things in life that are unforgettable,” Rainbow Dash said. “Me? I just try to smell good.”

“I am curious: are you embarking on some sort of journey as an official representative from the land of Equestria?”

“Uhhh... No...” Rainbow Dash shook her head. “Can't say that I am.”

“Well, that's interesting.” Evergreen shuffled to a stop besides the double-doors to her office. She pointed at the pendant hanging around Rainbow's neck. “I could have sworn you carried the marks of your homeland.”

“Oh this?” Rainbow Dash tapped a hoof against the ruby lightning bolt. “This simply scares the bugs away. Heheh... I promise you. I'm one hundred percent free mare.”

“Only one hundred percent?”

Rainbow Dash squinted at her.

Evergreen went on. “Emeraldine is a monarchy, yes. However, Queen Whitemane has maintained the same spirit of freedom that the prior rulers have supported for so long. We are all ponies that appreciate community, Miss Dash, along with hard-work and the ability to express ourselves. In the end, we have established a society that praises harmony and joy. We live in a civilization where ponies are happy, healthy, but ultimately free. I would think that you would be more than at home in a place like this.”

“Before you go mane over hooves to try and create some sort of invitation or something,” Rainbow spoke, “I'm afraid I can't stay. This place is awesome and the ponies are really cool, but... I'm not exactly settling down anywhere.” Rainbow Dash gulped. “Ever...”

“Hmmm... of that I have no doubt.” Evergreen remarked. “I was under the impression that you were heading east somewhere.”

“Heh. Something like that.”

“Had a destination in mind?”

“I figured I'd let east be the judge of that.”

Evergreen chuckled. “Perhaps it would do you some good to stop by the capital city, Verdestone.”

“I heard it's a pretty happenin' place. What, do you have relatives there?”

“No, but I do have close acquaintances there.” Evergreen knocked on the doors. They opened, and a servant marched out from the mayor's office with a tray on his flank, atop which was a scroll. “And a pony who wants to get anywhere safely beyond the immediate borders of Emeraldine will want to have the support of close acquaintances.”

“Are you talking about Darkstine?” Rainbow Dash asked. “That place is starting to sound less and less friendly every time Ridgesiders describe the unicorns that live there.”

“Indeed, it is a very different place than Emeraldine. But, regardless of the true conditions of the government there, I think you could benefit from any assistance you can get.” Evergreen took the scroll from the tray and hoofed it to Rainbow Dash. After Rainbow took it, Evergreen spoke, “This is an official seal of Ridgeside representation. It includes my hoofprint. If you happen to stumble upon the capital city of Verdestone, go and pay a visit to the Chamber of Representatives. Show this to a pony named Steelteeth. He and I go way back, and he would be more than happy to assist a pony who has won my utmost confidence.”

“Heh... yeesh...” Rainbow slid the scroll into her saddlebag and fought the urge to blush. “Do you guys here ever run out of compliments?”

“Not unless you run out of awesomeness,” Evergreen smiled.

“Well, thanks. This could help me big time. What do I owe you?”

“Nothing you haven't won back already,” Evergreen said. “I'm delighted that you have brought such excitement and wonderment to the young members of this town. Will you be leaving right away?”

“Er... well... sooner than later, I suppose.”

“Again, this isn't something you owe us. But, I was wondering, if you haven't run out of energy, if you would be willing to lend your talents to something?”

“Heck! Name it...”

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