• Published 23rd Mar 2020
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Do Ponies on Earth have Magic Dreams? - Tiki Bat

The story of an optimistic young night pony, the special pony that enters his life, and how the two of them follow their dreams to make the world a better place!

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Chapter 51: Making Amends… Even if it’s Hard to Do

Silver paced around the planning office that was set up in an old barn; one of the few structures that was salvageable and actively being used. All of his calls to SPEC had either been put on hold indefinitely or had ended up with an endless loop of him being transferred between departments, and by this point he was ready to give up and just go relax with Scarlet. Smith had been right when he said getting this stuff done wouldn’t be easy, but Silver had still hoped that he could get into contact with whatever architect had been hired to design the initial plans. That clearly wasn’t going to happen however, and it only frustrated Silver more.

Thoughts of his father floated back through his head, giving him another possible avenue to solve this issue. Would he even pick up? Would he even agree to help?… I haven’t talked to him in such a long time… Silver thought to himself.

He looked back over to his discarded phone and slowly walked towards it.

“I can’t believe I’m even thinking about this…” he said out loud.

It was a desperate play for something he had no real stake in, he didn’t even live here after all. But ponies helped ponies… and maybe it was time to just break his silence and be the bigger pony. Scarlet had still insisted he tell his parents the good news about their foal after all… and as much as he didn’t owe them anything, catching up with that might break the ice in a way that made asking what was on his mind a lot easier.

Taking a deep breath, he used his wing thumbs to navigate through the phone, and paused as he hovered over the contact. Closing his eyes, he tapped the screen and almost jumped back when the ringing started.

He felt a weak and uneasy feeling in his stomach as the thought about their last interaction— the argument that drove such a wedge between them. Would any of this be worth it? Would anything change? Those were all questions that ran through Silver’s head until the human in the other end finally answered.

“Hello?” his deep voice called through the speaker.

Silver froze at the familiar voice and opened his mouth, but no words came out.

“Who’s calling?” His father asked again.

“I…” Silver stammered out. “It’s me, Dad.”

Time seemed to slow to a stop as he waited for his father’s response. He was almost expecting the line to disconnect right then and there, but it didn’t. Instead he heard what almost sounded like a gasp of surprise, which was soon replaced by coherent words again.

“J…Joshua? Is it really you?”

Silver felt a brief pang of anger rush through him at the sound of his father calling him by his old human name. Instead of breaking into an argument, he took a deep breath and nodded at the phone.

“My name is Silver now, Dad. But yeah, it’s me.”

“Its… it’s been a long time,” was the only response he got.

“Yeah… it has.”

There was a long awkward silence, but it was too late to back out of the call now, at least not without prompting more calls from his father.

“H—how have things been?” His dad asked, finally breaking the silence.

A rush of emotions flooded through Silver, making it hard to focus. As confused as he was at how cordial his father was being, he couldn’t stop the words from coming out of his mouth.

“They—they’ve been good,” he shakily replied. “It… doesn’t feel like it’s been that long, but so much has happened since I left. I crashed couches for a bit, met a mare who let me stay at her place, started working with other ponies in making stuff to help others, things got more serious between that mare and me, and well… you and mom are going to be grandparents soon…”

There was another long silence that seemed to drag on forever, and the lack of any response only filled Silver with a sense of dread and anxiety. Did he spring too much? Was it just information falling on deaf ears or… his thoughts turned back to the heated fight that they had, would his dad bring up those events.

Thankfully once again his father broke the silence, bringing Silver’s thoughts back down to earth.


“It’s Silver,” he reflexively replied.

“Right, Silver…” his dad seemed to linger on the name for a moment. “I’m kind of at a loss for words. I mean, you’re helping other ponies? And starting a family?”

“Yes, dad.” He responded. “And we’re just getting started on something really big.”

“I’m… gonna be honest, it’s a lot to take in. I know we didn’t leave on good terms, but I just want to say how proud I am of you.”

Something about his reply struck a nerve with Silver, and he felt his anger build back up again.

“You’re proud of me?” he asked aloud. His voice suddenly shifted into a more aggressive tone, “You’re proud of me. You, the human that told me I’d never amount to anything if I just tried to do what I’m doing now. The person that said I’d be better off in some circus freakshow because at least I’d make money that way.

Tears began to freely fall from Silver’s eyes as the emotion he had kept in for so long suddenly burst free.

“Jo— Silver… I…” he began.

“You what? You know I didn’t want to call you, I had no reason to, and if you’re gonna say you’re sorry then maybe you should have done that sooner.”

There was another silence, “I wanted to…”

Silver stopped and looked back at the phone, “You wanted to?” He asked before narrowing his gaze again, “You had all this time to do that, so why didn’t you then?”

“I… I don’t know.” His voice seemed to carry a remorseful tone, but Silver wasn’t content to let this go just yet. “I guess I didn’t feel it was right to go chase you down. I drove you away and that was my fault, and I figured that if you wanted to talk to me then you would.”

“Well you thought wrong.” Silver replied.

“I did. I was wrong though, and I should have tried harder to admit that and right it.”

“Really, you were wrong? Now you’re starting to sound like the brainwashed freak.”

“I was. I shouldn’t have snapped and said that to you, and I shouldn’t have treated you like you were anything less than my son. It’s one hundred percent my fault for not even trying to get in contact to tell you that.”

“Okay fine. So am I just supposed to accept the apology and pretend like everything’s okay?” He angrily hissed.

“No.” his dad replied, “No, you’re not. I don’t deserve to have you accept it, and I don’t expect you to either. That doesn’t mean I don’t want to try and salvage what I can though, and if you’ll at least let me try that then I promise I’ll show you how different I am.”

“Oh you’ve changed!? That’s gold!” He sarcastically quipped. “Cool, so I guess that means everything’s good then? So where do you wanna start?”

“I want to start wherever you want to, Silver. You called me, and you didn’t have to, so why not start there?”

Hearing his dad call him by his actual name seemed to break through his anger slightly. Slightly, but not fully.

“What if I don’t want to start anywhere? What if you’ve ruined it and there’s no chance at going back?” Silver asked, testing the waters.

“Then I leave, let you live your life, and we never have to talk again.”

Picking up on the sad tone his voice took, Silver slowly stopped pacing around and nodded at the phone. “Okay then.” He took a deep breath, “I called you because my marefriend said I should at least tell you and mom about our foal. I don’t know what gender it is, or when it’ll be born— this stuff is weird for ponies, but I guess you should know that.”

“You know, I always wanted to be a grandpa,” he mused. “So what do you think you’ll name the little guy?”

“We don’t know yet,” Silver cautiously replied, still tearing up, but doing his best to keep calm for now. “If it’s a boy we’re naming him Orion, if it’s a girl then maybe Stella.”

“Your grandmother’s name,” his dad commented.

“Yeah,” Silver replied. The truth was that Scarlet and Silver had picked the names while out Stargazing, and the thought of a family connection hadn’t even crossed his mind. He didn’t want to spoil what was becoming a sincere moment however.

“I think both are good names. And I hope you’ll let us meet them at least once.”

“We can talk about that when things are a little more… grounded.”

“That’s only fair,” his father replied. “So do you want to try and talk about more, or just stop for now? End the call on a nice note and call it a day?”

The thought of what this call was actually meant to be about crossed his mind again, and Silver nodded once more. “I have another thing to talk about. It’s a huge favor to ask though, and I don’t know if it’s worth asking or not.”

“Try me. I said I was going to change and I want to help you with whatever you need.”

“I don’t know, it’s a big request.”

“Well, I’m all ears.”

Silver rolled his eyes and took a deep breath, “Okay then. What if I told you that I was in desperate need of an architect. One that has a history of working reliably and fast, who also isn’t busy right now? That’s a hard thing to come by, but I guess that's another reason why I called.”

The line sat silent again, but it wasn’t for long. “You know I’m kind of semi-retired, right? I haven’t designed something big in years.”

“Well, are you semi-retired or fully retired? Because if you want a job then I have one for you, and I’m only going to offer it once.”

“What’s the project?”

“Something that you would have said was stupid and not worth following…”

“What’s the project?” he insisted.

“Fine, the project is a city out in the middle of nowhere. Right now we only have a few usable buildings and we need to design and get permits for more. Our previous architect on staff only dealt with cookie cutter stuff and modifying existing buildings, which clearly isn’t going to work for what we need. So if you can dust off your stuff and get a bunch of multi-use buildings designed fast then I guess that’s a good first step towards mending things.”

“Silver… that is a lot to ask, you know that right?”

“I do, but I told you that already. So… That’s all I need right now.”

“Okay. What time frame do you need things by, and what do you need?”

Silver jumped back in surprise, because he didn’t expect anything to come from this.

“You’ll actually help?”

“I’ll try as much as I can, but you have to understand that I can’t do everything.”

“Okay.” Silver blinked his eyes a few times, “Well, the time frame is very tight. We basically need everything from homes, warehouses, multi-use stuff, lab space, and then we’ll also need water and power stuff, but that’s a whole other thing in itself.”

“Okay…” he paused, “that is going to be a lot to cover, but I’ll try my best to see what I can organize. I’ll need you to email me some more in depth breakdowns, including the land survey results. I can get a jumpstart on some of it but there’s foundations we need to engineer for and other things you probably have no idea about. So just send me what I need and I can see what I can do to start, and we can have a meeting with your land management company later to iron out the rest of the details.”

Silver considered it, and nodded, “Okay. I don’t know how I feel about everything, but if you can help us out then I’m willing to work on fixing things more. Is that fair?”

“Of course… I love you, Silver. I hope you know that. I’m so proud of you, and I hope we can visit soon.”

Tears started to well up in Silver’s eyes again, and all he could reply with was a simple, “I love you too dad. Thanks.”

The next few minutes we’re an emotional blur to him. Tears filled his vision, a torrent of thoughts clouded his mind, and he felt a mix of relief and worry. Silver looked up at the moon and let out a small sigh. As much as the call had relieved him, it also worried him more than he thought it would. Would things stay good or would he wake up to a voicemail that the plan had fallen through? He could have sat and thought about this for the rest of his night, but he just couldn’t. He had made a small step towards mending a family relationship, and he just had to accept that whatever happened happened. He could control it just as much as he could the rest of the world, and there was nothing else he could do in the meantime.

A soft hoof gently tapped him on the shoulder, and as he looked up he couldn’t help but feel embarrassed that Scarlet had to see him as emotional as he was now.

“Hey Silvie, what’s wrong?”

He sat up and composed himself, rubbing the soft side of his hoof across his eyes. “It’s nothing, trust me.”

She shook her head, “No, it’s something. You’re a bad liar.”

Silver nodded, “I talked to my dad and—“

“— what did he say to you this time?!” Scarlet suddenly flared her wings.

“Nothing bad,” Silver hastily shouted back.

“He must have said something if this is how you’re reacting.”

“We talked about stuff. Promised to try and make amends and all that.”

She raised a skeptical eyebrow. “He apologized? Just out of the blue like that?”

Silver shook his head. “No. Not at first. I called him and… some things got awkward, some things got a little heated, but then we both talked about what happened. It didn’t make up for what he said all that time ago, but it at least got us past the silence.”

“And that fixed everything?” She dropped her aggressive stance. “Sorry if I'm finding it hard to believe.”

“There’s nothing to be sorry about, I honestly don’t know what to make of it either,” he admitted.

“So how does it fix the problem then?”

“It doesn’t,” Silver shrugged. “What it does do is give us an avenue to get there though. I had a problem, he might be able to help, and if we fix what’s broken on the way there then good.”

Scarlet’s expression softened, and she snuggled up next to him. “Okay. I’ll trust your judgement on it.” She smiled as she gently rubbed a hoof across her stomach, “Did you tell him about our bright little star?”

“Yeah,” Silver smiled. “I think that helped break the ice a little bit. He wants to see him when he’s born, and I said we’ll think about it.”

“Well we’ve got a lot of time to think about that then.”

Nuzzling up closer to Silver, she looked up at the stars above and smiled. As much as the two wanted to stay there longer, their trip was nearing its midpoint, and sooner than later they’d be heading back home. That didn’t mean their business out here would be over, however, and Silver still had some work he wanted to get done in between their cuddling and stargazing. Things were looking up it seemed, and for the first time in a while, Silver felt like everything was going right.

Little did he know that there was still a major issue to deal with…

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