• Published 5th Jul 2017
  • 1,747 Views, 151 Comments

Purple Point: His Life in Space - Alden MacManx

How Purple Point manages his life in space aboard the Cosmic Lotus, and how others handle him. Let the battle begin!

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Family Reunion

Twenty-plus years after the launch of the refitted Cosmic Lotus.

To: Princess Luna, Queen of the Night, Ruler of Dreams, yadda, yadda, yadda…

From: Radiance Point, Professor of Starship Systems, Dewclaw University, Berdoovia, Chakona

Re: Gathering at my place.

Hi, Lulu! Hope you have not forgotten about me, even though I hope you DID forget the fifty bits I won off you back at the Friday night dinner at House Path years ago. You had a pair of fours in the hole while I had a pair of tens.

The reason for this note is that I am having a family reunion week after next at my place on Chakona. Okay, my wives and I co-own the place. This is your invitation to come out and meet my family. ALL of them. Sons, daughters, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, in-laws and out-laws. Come on down and meet the crowd! Food, fun and music available. Come and see!

I promise, no poker playing during your visit. My family refuses to play cards with me anymore, and the Pegasus is on deployment, so M’Lai is unavailable to keep me checked and balanced…

Professor Radiance Point

Pine Grove, Flinders, Chakona

To: Professor Radiance Point, Professor of Starship Technology, Dewclaw University, Berdoovia, Flinders, Chakona

From: Princess Luna, Ruler of the Night, Guider of Dreams, and all that other stuff…

Radiance! Long time, no word! Of course, I will be happy to come out and enjoy your reunion. According to my schedule, I will be able to make it out there on the second day of your reunion, depending on events here. I would enjoy meeting your extended family!

Also, I miss Cast Iron’s cooking, ever since Delectable’s moved from Vanhoover to Chakona. Let Hot Skillet know I want my regular order!

And, no, I have NOT forgotten those fifty bits, sandbagger! Someday, I’m going to win them back!

Princess Luna Canterlot Castle, Equis

Radiance Point woke up at his family’s home in the community of Pine Grove, a small town outside of Berdoovia, feeling eager. Today was the day that not only the whole herd, but the whole FAMILY would be gathering at the house for a long-awaited full reunion. Ever since Cast Iron and his whole family, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, moved out to Chakona five years before, opening Delectable’s Diner outside of Dewclaw University, reunions were common, but to have EVERYONE there was extremely unusual, what with the number of spacers in the family.

He moved carefully getting out of bed, not waking Flamepaws, Nightmare, or the newest addition to the family, Hotshot, a chakat/earth pony hybrid, barely a month old. After a brisk shower, he carefully made his way to the kitchen, where his first move was to start his coffeepot before figuring out breakfast. As the eggs sizzled in the skillet, his eldest daughter Mira came into the kitchen.

Mira is a chakat/unicorn hybrid, hir deep black body fur only relieved by hir deep red tail, hooves (back legs only) and horn. Like hir father, she needs a caffeine kick to get started in the morning. Unlike hir father, she is not a vegetarian. Shi used the steal-a-cup feature on the coffeepot to grab a mug of black tar before pulling out some sausage from the chill box. After a sip, shi focused on her father. “Morning, Dad,” shi said while giving him a one-pawed hug.

“Morning, Mira. All set for today?” Radiance asked, leaning into the hug. Privately, he was jealous of all his children by his wives, they all having a chakat body shape, including the arms, but he would never say so aloud. Not that they didn’t already know, of course.

“You bet I am, Dad. Home from school, seeing Aunt Sunrise and her family, Cousin Steel and his, and all the cousins is a real treat. I’ve already rented a panoramic camera for the group shots,” shi said, one of hir hobbies being photography and holography, when shi wasn’t studying Engineering.

“Today and tomorrow. Thank your mothers for getting everyone together,” Radiance said as he flipped the eggs out of the pan onto a plate, pulled out three slices of toast from the toaster, and grabbed the pot of butter all in his glow simultaneously.

“You need to be thanked, too. Who was it who successfully lobbied Herald Lines into making a second home port here on Chakona, Mister Vice-Chairpony of the Board?” Mira teased. Shi knew Radiance much preferred being a teacher than a businesspony, but on occasion he knew where, when and how to kick some tail on the business end.

“That’s because I didn’t want your sister to have to go to Equus for good business lessons with the company,” Radiance grumped as he had a forkful of his eggs over medium, referring to his second daughter from Flamepaws, Flaming Ears, so named because hir ears are a bright orange color as opposed to her light tan base coat. Flaming Ears had shown business potential from a young age.

“You have to admit, Aunt Sunrise has a better head for business than you do,” Mira said as shi loaded the toaster with bread.

Radiance dipped his toast into his coffee before taking a bite. “Never denied it. I have the title here, but she knows the ins and outs better than I do, while I know how to kick butt and leave prints,” he snorted.

“Can’t deny that, Dad,” Mira replied as shi cracked some eggs into the skillet before adding a large slice of sausage. While Radiance would not partake of meat, he never objected if others did. He just looked aside when it was being cooked and consumed.

“Nope and won’t even try. The Berdoovian contingent should be here soon, to start cooking. Just glad it’s going to be fair next couple of days, so we can use the outside kitchens,” Radiance said between bites of egg and toast. “Glad I had that put in.”

“Hey, with you and both moms designing the house, how could it be anything else but excellent?” Mira asked, flipping the sausage and eggs.

“We were looking ahead, in hopes of something like this happening. Glad I was right. How go your magic classes?” Radiance asked.

“Not only am I learning from the best technomancers, I’m taking some of your lessons as well and incorporating them. I’m not quite up to reprogramming holodecks with my technomancy, but it should not be long now.”

“Good. When you figure it out, you teach me, okay? I have to go through a V.V. crystal. Just glad I figured out the interfacing between Equestrian crystals and Federation computers,” Radiance said with his usual modesty, meaning none.

“Dad, you know how much Aunt Firesox and Uncle Julius helped you with it! Why else is the patent split three ways?” Mira snapped back, sliding the ham and eggs out of the pan onto a plate.

“I never denied their help, but I had the key insights to be able to put tab A into slot B successfully,” Radiance said, just before he got hit in the back of the head with a wet sponge.

“Dad, get your nose down where it belongs before I ask Prince Blueblood to give you snootiness lessons!” snapped his wholly-chakat daughter Riverside, being mostly brown on hir underside and limbs while being a blue-green up higher on hir body. Shi was two Chakonan weeks older than hir half-pony sister and has tended to put Radiance in his place since before shi learned how to talk.

“Right, Riverside,” Radiance mumbled, staying quiet for the rest of his breakfast.

Mira looked at hir sister and smiled as Riverside padded in to the kitchen, picking up the wet sponge and tossing it into the sink before starting work on her own breakfast. Riverside smiled back, always happy for a chance to put hir father down a peg.

Throughout the morning, family members trickled in to the Point family house, arriving from all over Chakona and points farther out. Sunrise Flight, her husband Huron Redshaft, and their three hippogriff children arrived early, as did Cast Iron and Hot Skillet with their youngest, the teenaged earth pony Hot Pepper, who has a bright red and green coat. They started cooking as the rest of the family arrived. The last ones to arrive, just before noon, was Radiant Steel, Eridonax, and their four children, ranging in age from two to sixteen.

After noon, the chakat side of the family came by, they being Julius Crusoe, his mates Firesox and Prellin, their four kids and three grandchildren with their respective families. With a houseful of ponies, chakats, skunktaurs, griffons, changelings, hippogriffs and what all, a particularly raucous time was had by all, raucous but very much welcome.

The reunion was scheduled to be a two-day affair, because for the second day, Radiance and his kin invited all those who were either past crew on the Cosmic Lotus or Gowanus Herald, the first one, five of the survivors emigrating to Chakona to help run that branch of Herald Lines. Each had met everyone else, but this has been the first time they all met each other at the same place at the same time.

A lot of welcome reunions were had that day, among ponies, chakats and whatevers that had not met in too long a time. Up on a high balcony, Radiance, his wives, and youngest daughter held court, letting the party flow on around them. The children, both days, had free run of the back yard, down to the banks of the small river that marked the boundary. The fliers of the family took turns doing overflight, keeping an eye on the kids as well as the weather. Sunrise Flight had discovered she was quite skilled at weather wrangling, as is Paradoxis, her mate Thunderclap, and their three daughters, though they were a bit young yet. Sunrise’s three kids, hippogriffs all, could and did maintain a sky watch around the compound.

“Radiance, you did good coming out here and dragging us along for the ride,” said White Wrap, the old doctor from the seagoing Gowanus. “It’s done wonders for all of us.”

“Got that right, White Wrap. How goes your clinic?” Radiance asked, referring to an Equestrian medical clinic she had opened in Berdoovia, an adjunct to the University, dedicating in teaching non-Equestrians the ins and outs of pony and other Equestrian physiology.

“Coming along good, young fellow. I’m titular head, but I have good assistants who handle the day to day. Next class will be graduating in about two months, the third class overall. Already have jobs lined up for them, and each of the employers are champing at the bit to get them!” the old unicorn reported with a laugh.

“I know White Heart is eager to begin hir classes as soon as shi is able,” Nightmare said, referring to her second daughter with Radiance, a chakat/unicorn hybrid who has showed a talent for healing from an early age.

“Shi’s just going to have to wait another year. Tell hir she had best keep up hir studies, because I’m going to be harder on hir than everypony else there!” White Wrap said with a bit of a snap.

“Oh, come on, Wrap, you’re not going to be that hard on hir, will you?” Radiance asked.

“Just as hard on hir as you were on everypony aboard the Gowanus, Radiance!”

“Deal, then. You survived and are doing well. Let White Heart prove hirself to you. I can respect a decision like that,” Radiance said, nodding some in agreement.

“As do I, Wrap,” Nightmare said as well. “Shi’s determined, headstrong, and knows what shi wants. Shi’s respected you ever since you arrived here on Chakona.”

“If she proves hirself to me in school, shi’ll have my full support.”

About then, the dinner bell rang on a lower court. A pegasus filly, Paradoxis’ youngest daughter, flew up to the edge of the upper balcony. “Who comes, gets it!” she announced before taking wing to round up the kids from their play.

“Let’s get a move on. I’m hungry!” Flamepaws said as she held on to Hotshot, who was struggling some in hir mother’s arms.

“So am I,” Radiance said, getting up. “Wonder what Iron and Skillet have ready for us today.”

“Something good, for sure!” White Wrap said, getting up as well. “They have not lost one bit of their skill, coming here.”

“Admit it, Wrap, you like the discount Radiance has set up for all his old friends and shipmates,” Nightmare said, stretching fluidly after standing.

White Wrap laughed a little, giving Radiance a hug as he stood up. “Free meals for life for his shipmates is a deal I could not turn down. Besides, I’ve known Cast Iron since he was a colt, and he cooks just as well as his mother, a trait he has passed to all his children and grandchildren.”

“So, what happened to you, Radiance? You are an okay cook, but nothing like your kids,” Flamepaws said as they started the walk down the ramps to the dining area.

“Just never cared to develop the skill. Delectable did teach me the basics, and I learned them. Just don’t have the desire to do anything fancy,” Radiance said, leading the parade down and around. “I’ll leave that to those who know, so I can enjoy it all the more.”

White Wrap turned her head to look at the two trailing chakats. “Who taught him diplomacy?” she asked Radiance’s wives.

“Shi did,” they both said, pointing at each other.

“Wasn’t easy, but they did it, praise Celestia.” Radiance laughed.

Dinner was laid out buffet style, in three sections. The first section was the all-vegan table, for those who leaned that way. The second section was the seafood-base, for the pegasi. The third section was the carnivore section, which drew the biggest crowd.

As the last of the guests sat down to eat, Radiance stood up. “Fillies, gentlecolts, ladies, gentlemen, chakats, skunktaurs and humans alike, I am proud to announce one more guest has arrived, a guest I have told no one that was coming. Everyone, please welcome, direct from Equis, none other than Princess Luna!” he declared.

Princess Luna teleported in at the top of the house with a flash, attracting everyone’s attention before gliding down to the dining area. As she descended, Radiance shouted, “House Point weekend dinner rules apply here!”

The princess landed next to Radiance at the high table. “Radiance, thank you for asking me to come out here and meet your extended family again. I’ve missed going to Delectable’s Diner for a good dinner.”

“Luna, you gave me some of the confidence I needed to make myself what I am today. Consider this my way of thanking you for your help. Also, Hot Pepper wanted to see you again,” Radiance said as he cleared a space for her at the table.

“I hope she has not forgotten what I enjoyed the most from the diner,” Luna said, sitting down.

“Well, let’s find out. Hot Pepper, bring Luna what she enjoys, okay?” Radiance called out.

“Coming right up!” the teenaged earth pony called out from her place at the kitchen. Within three minutes, she came out, carrying a laden tray up to Luna. “I hope you like it still, Luna!”

Luna smiled at the red and green filly, sniffing the meal’s aromas. “I see no reason why I should not, Hot Pepper. Enjoying yourself here on Chakona?”

Hot Pepper smiled back. “It’s not Equestria, but it is a wonderful place to be. I meet some interesting folk at the restaurant now.”

“I’m sure you do, Hot Pepper. I’ll catch up with you before I leave, okay?”

“Thank you, Luna! I’ve missed our diner chats. We all have,” Hot Pepper said before going back to the kitchen.

For hours, long into the night, the whole family chatted with Luna, either meeting her for the first time or renewing old acquaintances. Radiance, Julius, and some others broke out instruments and took to the stage for a couple of hours, impressing all with their musical skill.

It was not until one in the morning before many of the guests sought their beds, leaving fewer and fewer die-hards out back to continue visiting. Luna was still the center of attention, chatting with all those who wished to. Luna found it relaxing, just chatting with Radiance’s family about topics wholly unrelated to politics or ruling or anything like that, just common subjects between old friends.

About three in the morning, Luna shook herself gently. “Okay, one and all, it is about time I headed back to Equis. Destined took Night Court for me, and now I have a lot to talk about once I get home. Thank you for inviting me to visit, Radiance. It has been a pleasure.”

“Luna, I hoped you would say something like that. You see, in my opinion, goddesses and princesses are ponies too, and I thought you would like to spend some time with those who were not in awe of you. Looks like I was right,” Radiance said from where he sat by the embers still glowing in the fire pit.

“He’s right, Luna,” Julius said. “Just getting to meet someone like you in an informal surrounding, no court rituals, is a treat for someone like us.”

“I can say the same, Julius,” Luna said as she stood. “Don’t hesitate to call when you have another gathering like this, Radiance.”

“We got lucky this time, all the spacers being here at Chakona at once. I hold gatherings here several times a year, but this time, I got everypony. If you like, I’ll inform you of the smaller gatherings. Deal?” Radiance asked.

“Deal. Until next time, everyone!” Luna called out before teleporting out.

After Luna’s departure, Radiance and Julius remained by the fire pit. Neither of them was tired, and so they sat and talked, waiting for sunrise. The pair moved to the outside kitchen, where Julius put together an early breakfast for them.

“I’m damn glad I decided to have this little party here,” Radiance said after taking a pull from his coffee mug.

“So am I, Radiance,” Julius said as he flipped pancakes over on the griddle before checking the eggs. “I’ve seen folk today that I have not met in years, not to mention meeting the Princess.”

“Yeah, Luna’s a good pony to know and have on your side. I would have invited Princess Celestia, but I know Luna better than any Princess, other than Twilight, and I knew she would be occupied,” Radiance said with a yawn. “I told you to make the coffee full strength, Jules!”

“I also do not want to stay awake until Thirdday because of it, Radiance! If you want some of the Kickapoo joy juice, say so and I’ll get it, okay?” Julius snapped as he pulled off the pancakes and eggs, loading them onto a plate and handing it off to Radiance before mixing a fresh batch of pancake mix.

“By Faust, you get grumpy when you’re hungry, Jules. I’ll go get the Stay-Wake, okay? AFTER I finish the plate,” Radiance said as he picked up a knife and started adding butter to the pancakes in liberal doses.

“Sounds good to me,” Julius said as he poured the pancake mix onto the griddle before cracking three eggs and pulling out some sausage to fry.

After the early breakfast was cooked and consumed, and Radiance took a dose of Stay-Wake, the two went to the edge of the big patio for more chat. The two, while being good friends as well as in-laws (Radiance’s wife Flamepaws being the older sister of Julius’ mate Firesox), seldom have off time together. The mismatched pair chatted about topics ranging from music to technology and back again, chilling until family members and friends started waking up. Cast Iron, Hot Skillet, and Hot Pepper arose first, to prepare a hearty breakfast for everyone before they took their leave. Radiance, Nightmare and Flamepaws received more hugs in an hour and a half than they could keep track of from their extended family that morning, to the detriment of their upper ribs. The love in the air was palpable even to non-empaths, like Radiance Point.

By noon, everyone had left, except for Sunrise Flight and her three hippogriff children, her husband Huron Redshaft being due back at work that morning. They lived nearby, in the township of Hilltop. “Brother, you outdid yourself these past couple of days. It was wonderful,” she said over a lunch of leftovers.

“Don’t thank me, thank these two,” Radiance said to his sister, indicating his wives. “They put the affair together, I just did as I was told to do.”

“Just how much coercion did you have to use?” Sunrise asked Flamepaws.

“We told him that if he didn’t behave, next weekend he’ll have the kids while Nightmare and I go to Amistad,” Flamepaws replied with an evil grin, which was echoed by her lifemate.

“All seven of them at home still, and all of them will have proper instructions before we leave,” Nightmare said.

Sunrise looked back at her brother, but he was nowhere to be seen. She looked confused, because she knew she had not heard hooves on the floor nor the pop of displaced air from a teleportation. “Where he go?’ she asked.

Flamepaws put Hotshot down, and the cub immediately scampered under the table, followed by a thump and a surprised ‘oof’ as Radiance’s head impacted a table leg. He came up from under the table, Hotshot held in his glow, rubbing the side of his head with a hoof. “No fair!” he complained to his wives.

“All is fair in love and war, Radiance,” Nightmare said.

“Around here, there is no war, except the war of love,” Radiance said with affection, snuggling the squirming cub to him, who settled down fast.

“The only battle that you will willingly lose to, Brother,” Sunrise said with a smile.

“Because losing is winning in that game, and I so HATE to lose,” Radiance replied just before Hotshot grabbed his lower lip, pulled on it, and bit. His wives and sister could only laugh at the scene, which was promptly Canonized by Sunrise, catching the startled look on Radiance’s face.

“If that’s a win, I can’t fault you for not wanting to lose, Brother!” Sunrise laughed after the required number of clicks from her phone.

Author's Note:

Finally got this done. Now that my health crisis has abated (for the most part) I can now focus on writing again.

If I ever come up with another story idea for Radiance Point, I'll do it in a separate tale, not part of this.