• Published 13th May 2012
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Austraeoh - Imploding Colon

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“No, child,” Queen Whitemane spoke with a gentle smile. “It most certainly will not let you fly through the burning heart of a volcano.”

“Awwww...” Rainbow Dash nevertheless smirked at the fluctuating sphere of ivory light billowing around her. She levitated before the Queen on the balcony beneath Verdestone night. “Still, this is pretty sweet. Heaven knows I could have used this sort of a thing a dozen times over the last few weeks.”

“You do strike me as a pony who's well acquainted with danger,” Whitemane said. “Though, I imagine you could learn a thing or two about danger's consequences.”

“Eh. Too boring. It's a lot harder and cooler to survive.” Rainbow Dash winked. “Thanks, a bunch. Just what do I owe you?”

“Not a thing, my child,” Whitemane said. “However, I would like to advise you to do something: not in return for the favor I have bestowed you, but rather as a means of bringing prosperity to yourself and even other ponies.”

“Uhhhhh... Yeah, sure.” Rainbow Dash touched down and looked up at her. “Name it.”

“The province of Darkstine to the east of Emeraldine...”

“Yeah? I hear it's full of unicorns who dabble in industry. And, like, there's a deep ravine lying on the other side. Uhm... What about it?”

“I would like you to pay the capital city a visit.”

“Oh? What for?”

“The country that belongs to the Darkstinians is experiencing a degree of turmoil as of late. Very few members of the Verdestone Chamber of Representatives know what the real problem is.”

“Do you?”

“Bits and pieces,” Whitemane said with a gentle nod. “There's been a clash between two major factions, seemingly stemming from an energy crisis in the center of the province's largest city.”

“Heh... That sounds kind of lame, actually.” Rainbow Dash gulped. “Look, your Highness, you're right when you say that I'm at my best around danger. I'd skim over volcanoes or butt heads with demon chaos bats anyday. But when it comes to ponies getting ticked off at other ponies and coming to blows, I really don't think that's my area of expertise. I mean, I'm no diplomatic or nothing. Unless performing an airshow to wow both sides of the capital is what you have in mind, I'm not sure what help I'm going to be.”

“I think you'll discover that you're the one and only mare to make a difference in that capital,” Whitemane said. “You are important there as you've been important here, as a guest of my very own chambers.”

“I... I just don't get it...” Rainbow Dash sat on her haunches, making a face. “What good could I do a bunch of ponies with their heads full of gears? And—like—what does any of this have to do with my trip to the Midnight Armory?”

“I think you'll find that I'm not the one to illuminate your path entirely, Rainbow Dash,” she said. “I can only point you in the right direction, and soon you'll find that all of the whole world is spread before you as a means of assisting in your travels.”

“Unnngh...” Rainbow Dash facehoofed hard. “Talk to one alicorn, and you've talked to them all.”

“For once, a generality has its merit,” Whitemane said with a wink.

“Yeah, and I bet you're proud of that,” Rainbow Dash muttered.

Whitemane chuckled delicately. “I will be sure to provide you a guide. I think Constable Steelteeth will be most exceptional in escorting you across the less-than-friendly borders of our east neighbors.”

“He's not gonna be very thrilled about that.”

“Unlike you, he doesn't have a choice.”

“Heh...” Rainbow Dash stood up, smirking. “I'll be sure to rub that in his angry face. By the way, think you can do one more favor for me, your Highness?”

“What is that, child?”

Rainbow Dash twirled around and shook her mane. “Could you use your royal magic to get rid of these frickin' annoying braids?” She sighed exasperatingly. “All of the chambermaids are gone and I've got nopony left to impress.”

“I am here, am I not?”

“Yeah. Uhm. Don't even go there.”

Whitemane smiled and trotted over. “Do not fret, child. I have many blessings left to give.” And, with a concentrated burst, she shot a beam of telekinetic energy into Rainbow Dash's mane. The balcony flashed with a bright sheen of light.

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