• Published 25th Jun 2018
  • 276 Views, 32 Comments

A Tempest Tossed - LotusTeaDragon



Violet Tempest must stop a violent storm from destroying Equestria!

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Chapter Eleven

CHAPTER ELEVEN

Manehattan Library
Receiving Office

Inky blackness swam about her as she felt herself shake. She could have swore she'd just walked through her office door, but instead all she could feel was the cold hardness of something pressing against her side. Had she fallen asleep at her desk again?

She opened her eyes and found she was staring right into the eyes of Candela.

"Gah!" she called out in surprise as she pushed herself backward, creating distance between the two ponies.

"I realize I haven't brushed my teeth in a few days, but it can't be that bad," said the earth pony.

Violet sat up, and looked around. "This isn't my office," she said.

Candela tilted her head in confusion. "What? Um, are you okay, Violet?"

Violet blinked her eyes rapidly for a few moments, willing away the last dregs of sleepiness. Looking around her, she realized where she was.

She had been dreaming that she had been, well, dreaming. She had, for a few moments it seemed, convinced herself that she was back in Canterlot, that she was home safe and sound, and that... she looked over at Candela. She felt a blush heat up her muzzle as she remembered what she had imagined in that dream.

Candela, for her part, wasn't privy to Violet's innermost thoughts, and so expressed her concern by putting a forehoof on Violet's shoulder.

"Are you okay, sweetheart?" she asked.

This, of course, only made the blush burn hotter, causing it to spread to the rest of her face.

Violet shook her head in an effort to clear the remaining dregs of sleep that had tried to valiantly hold on to her awareness.

"Yeah, yeah," she finally said, putting a hoof to her forehead. "I guess I had a dream where I was back home, and none of this had happened." She left out the extra tidbit where Candela had appeared so prominently in that dream.

Candela leaned in, and rubbed Violet's back. It was such a soothing gesture from a friend, but Violet couldn't help indulging in it with the twinging hope of maybe a little more? She wasn't sure.

"...and that's how we got back here."

Violet had completely missed Candela's reply. "I'm sorry," she said, pawing a forehoof at the beige low pile carpet they were lying on, "I missed all of that."

Candela chuckled. "You must still be a little out of it. All I really said was that you had been out of it all night, and I was starting to get worried."

Violet's heart ached just a little at that bit of news. Then a thought struck her. "Out? What do you mean?"

Candela's hoof left Violet's back, leaving it a bit cold now, and turned to face her. "Sweetie, you said you were feeling faint, and so we decided to come back up here to plan a new course of action, and take a little time to rest. We had managed to get back up the steps before you kind of just... laid down on them. I managed to carry you back here," she said, motioning to the darkened receiving office around them.

Violet digested this information for a few moments, and then licked her lips. "So I passed out?"

Candela nodded. "Passed out, fainted. I don't know if maybe the transmitter being broken was just too much all at once, maybe you were exhausted, or that you were sick from something. Either way, I'm so very glad to see you're awake."

Before Violet could react, Candela pulled her into a tight hug. She could hear the sniffles.

Poor Candela, she thought, all alone in this awful storm, her only companion out like a light from... something... and waiting without a friend in the world, or as far as she knew. The thought of Candela under that kind of stress disturbed her, and she banished the painful specter in her mind's eye to outer darkness.

Without thinking any further on it, she brought her own forelegs up and wrapped them around the earth pony's withers. She was so soft and warm. The two of them shared in the embrace amidst the peals of cacophonous thunder, and sting of the crackling lightning from the storm that raged outside.

In her embrace, Violet couldn't help but recall the more intense parts of her dream. She would have been lying to herself if she had denied there was an attraction to the earth pony mare. She was intelligent, kind, generous, and a natural leader. She reminded Violet of her first real crush.

It almost made her hesitate, remembering the results from that confession, but if she had learned anything from Rainbow Dash, nothing ventured was nothing gained. Well, okay, Twilight would have told her that, but Rainbow Dash would have lived it, and that's what counted here.

Deftly, very softly, Violet nuzzled Candela's neck, letting her muzzle disturb the fine hairs in a gentle, swirling motion.She felt Candela jerk slightly, and had begun to pull back when she felt the embrace tighten. Could Candela possibly feel the same way as she did?

The question had no sooner surfaced in her mind before she felt soft lips touch her own neck.

Her heart began to beat faster. She could scarcely believe that her dream really did have some merit to it. 'Go, subconscious!' she thought to herself. Deciding to see if it was only a fluke, she leaned forward just enough to return the kiss along Candela's neck. She felt the mare shiver ever so slightly.

"Violet?"

It had come out as barely above a whisper, but Violet could actually feel the words through her lips that had been caressing the earth mare's neck.

"Yes?" came the soft reply.

A pause, and then "what are you doing?"

Violet's heart began beating faster. It was now or never, that she would never get a more perfect opportunity to tell Candela how she felt, how her feelings had grown, how she had become so fond of her from their closeness, their need to stay together. She wondered where it would go from here as ideas flooded her mind. Not very experienced in relationships, she didn't know if Candela would even be in the mood to-

-BANG-

The mares jumped as a loud clatter came from the receiving dock.

"What in Celestia's mane was that?!" Violet called out as both she and Candela disentangled themselves from one another.

"It couldn't have been thunder. Thunder doesn't sound like that," came Candela's observation.

-BANG BANG BANG-

The mares looked at each other. "Someone's at the back door!" they exclaimed in unison.

The pair jumped into action. As Candela picked up her heavy saddlebag to use as a bludgeon, Violet made her way toward the receiving dock.

-BANG BANG BANG-

Motioning Candela to the opposite side of the service door, Violet slowly grabbed the door handle, and disengaged the locks. As she pulled, the door swung wide open as the gales from outside took over, throwing Violet backward and skidding across the concrete floor.

Holding a foreleg up to shield her eyes, she managed to look up just in time to see a dark figure standing in the doorway, its robes whipping wildly in the winds. Seemingly unaffected by the maelstrom outside, it took a step inside, and called out a name: "Violet!"

Candela leapt from beside the doorway, full saddlebag swinging downward.

"Not my friends, punk!" she cried out as the heavy bag made contact with the back of the intruder's head.

Caught off guard, the intruder went down like a sack of potatoes.

Hurriedly, Violet stood and rushed to help Candela get the door closed before more of the wind and rain could pour inside their shelter. The wind was pushing hard, but between the two they managed to silence it, locking the door, and then leaning against it, panting.

"What... what was that all about?!" Candela managed to get the words out between breaths.

Violet shook her head as she tried to gather herself together. "I have no idea!"

Slightly faster to recover, Candela made her way over to the prostrate figure lying on the floor in front of them. Stepping around them carefully, she picked up the saddlebags, most of its contents now spilled out onto the floor, and fished around for an emergency sodium light.

After a few seconds of frenzied digging, she managed to retrieve one and struck it hard against the floor, creating the reaction and making it possible to see without the need for the frequent lightning outside to flare in the thick blackness.

"What is it?" Violet asked as she approached from the opposite side.

Candela's softly lit expression showed not much but confusion.

"I'm not sure," she said. "If I had to guess, though" she said, rubbing her chin with a hoof, "I'd say it's a changeling."

Violet's heartbeat skyrocketed. A changeling?!

"Wha-what makes you say that?" she asked, her mouth having difficulty forming the words due to her fear.

"It's simple," Candela said, "what pony in their right mind would try to dress up like an alicorn and ransack a library in the middle of a storm like this one?"

Violet's heart stopped. "Alicorn?"

Candela nodded. "Yeah, a purple alicorn. She has-"

She was interrupted as Violet, having vaulted over the body on the floor, grabbed the sodium light and held it in front of the prone figure.

Her heart sank. There was the violet stripe in her purple mane, the signature horn, and those unmistakable wings. It was Twilight. She had apparently found them, which would have been fantastic at any other time, and when things were resolved she would feel the relief from that resolution, but for now they faced a new problem: Candela, in her effort to protect them from their assailant, had knocked the Princess of Friendship unconscious.

Horseapples.

/)*(\)