• Published 19th Oct 2012
  • 9,031 Views, 9,515 Comments

Eljunbyro - Imploding Colon



Bellesmith must perform experimental tasks in order to keep herself and her beloved safe.

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Two Symbols

Professor Garnet looked closely at the two symbols, his cold eyes narrowing in thought. He observed the twin horizontal lines on the left side as they curled at opposite ends and joined each other with a diagonal streak. He studied the serpentine pattern on the right that ended with a concave shape fitted with flaring dashes. After several minutes of intense scrutiny, he tilted his gaze up from the tablet in his grasp, raising an eyebrow.

Bellesmith sat across the oaken table from him in his office, fidgeting, waiting. The air pulsed with the ticking of an antique clock.

Sighing, Ganet zapped the image on his tablet clear with his horn and placed the glass sheet down. Folding his hooves he cleared his throat and spoke across the dimly lit compartment. "That is not the pattern we were looking for," he said.

Belle gulped, nodded, and stammered, "I know, Professor. But I'm telling you; it came to me. I saw it when I was last sequenced."

"The image we require data on is vital to understanding the subject," Garnet said. "The more information we have on the subject, the further we get to bringing glory to Ledomare."

"I am all for a successful experiment here in Blue Shelf," Belle said. "And I'm sorry, Professor, that I haven't gotten close to figuring out the meaning behind the symbol you've displayed to me previous." She pointed at the clear tablet. "But what I saw isn't a hallucination or a product of magical disconnect."

"Oh?"

"You have Dalton's reports," she said. "The last sphere I was in overtook the sequencing process. I had no control over the connection, and none of Dalton's assistants could pull me free until it was too late."

"Too late for what?"

"For me to receive a vision," Belle exclaimed, leaning forward as she spoke with emphasis. "It didn't just come to me after I was brought out; I saw it within the mental construct. The environment within the sphere was crafting the illustrations for me. This took place right after I had integrated deeply with a memory of great emotional importance to the subject. As a matter of fact, seeing the vision was what brought me back to a level of lucidity, allowing Dalton's team to pull me out. If I hadn't been allowed to see the vision, I fear I might still be in there, lost between the spheres."

"What do you mean... 'allowed,' Bellesmith?" Garnet's eyes narrowed. "You're a scientist, just like me. Surely you're not subject to flights of fancy."

"I know it sounds strange, sir. But if the Experimental Council of Ledo is right, and there is significance to the latest subject of Blue Shelf's sequencing, then this is exactly what must be expected. I believe we're onto something, Professor." She pointed once more at the blank tablet. "That image means something, just as much as the other one. All that remains is to find meaning to them."

"You mean names?" Garnet inquired. "Phonetics to the commands?"

Belle's chestnut eyes twitched upon hearing that. "You mean that's what the Council of Ledo requires?" She squinted. "Commands?"

Garnet took a deep breath. Without speaking, he extracted magic from a mounted crystal and produced a spreadsheet of data upon the tablet. Waving a hoof, he scrolled down the glowing words and altered a field of information at the bottom column.

Belle watched nervously.

Finally, Garnet spoke. "Fantastic work, Doctor. You've earned yourself a week up on the surface."

Belle exhaled sharply. She smiled wide and bowed her head slightly. "Thank you, Professor. I knew you would be impressed..."

"Oh, I'm not the one you've made an impact on," he said, gazing at her unemotionally. "I do not see the same progress that you believe has been made here. However, this decision is not up to me. Somepony higher up believes you must rest before engaging in what is undoubtedly going to be the most strenuous exercise thus far."

"Somepony higher up?" Belle remarked, blinking oddly. Her face paled as she murmured, "Shell..."

Garnet slowly nodded. "The leader of the Blue Shelf Enforcers was observing you in your latest sequence. I'm guessing the fact that you can still speak and function after such deep excursions within the subject's spheres is a subject of intense impressiveness to him. I am proud of you too, of course, but I must keep a professional and objective distance in my evaluations. Besides, you already have a mentor in Dalton."

"I understand," Belle said, then swallowed anxiously. "How... H-how much of an expressed interest does Shell have in me?"

"That remains to be seen. What matters is that you've proven to be quite resilient in the sequencing. And now that we know that the subject is capable of providing us more than the residual data that we've acquired, it would be as good time as any to start performing other experiments on it."

"What kind of experiments?"

"None that concern you, Doctor. After all, you've sacrificed enough as it is. And, like a good Ledomaritan, it is my task to pay you back." He leaned over and passed the tablet over. "Your hoof, please."

Belle swiftly raised her right forelimb and hovered it above a magical hologram. Bright red lines scanned her hoof, turned yellow, then turned green. One of the crystals on Garnet's desk flashed.

For once, he bore a smile, albeit a stale one. "Congratulations, Doctor Bellesmith." He stood up. "Now, go and be with your beloved."

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