• Published 19th Oct 2012
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Eljunbyro - Imploding Colon



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

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Hell Bent

"So... wait!" Phoenix lurched forward, hissing into the dark space of the chamber where he and Zenith stood, alone. They were a long, winding corridor away from the main campsite. "She's going to be leaving us? Leaving her friends?"

"That's what she said," Zenith muttered, gazing at the blue sound stone in between his hooves. He sat on his haunches and exhaled long and hard. "She only thinks the Captain knows."

"Well, that's... I-I mean that's great!" Phoenix smiled. "I bet she'll be getting those punks off our backs! You realize what this means?"

"I do."

"It means that the Ledomaritans will be distracted enough for us to make a break for—"

"It means nothing," Zenith grunted. "You and I have seen this pony, Phoenix. We've seen how she's a mare of actions and not of words. Should we honestly believe her when she pretends to commit to something?"

Phoenix blinked. "I... I..."

"You're at a loss for words, as usual."

"H-hey! Now you wait a second!" Phoenix frowned and pointed. "I'm not half the idiot you think I am, Zenith! But it sounds like this lady is ready to split! I think we should count ourselves lucky and just run with it!"

"She's not going to give up her friends, Phoenix."

"How do you know this?!"

Zenith glared at Phoenix.

Phoenix blinked a few times. Under the other soldier's fiery gaze, his ears drooped and he leaned back against the cave wall.

Zenith took a deep breath and spoke, "She's not like you and me, Phoenix. She doesn't have a home. She doesn't have a family to return to. She's got nothing but a rare pendant around her neck and two ponies who—for whatever absurd reason—love her more than oxygen. Do you really think she's going to give up something as precious to her as them? In a life as desperate and lonely as that, it would be like tearing all of one's legs and wings off."

"She's young and healthy and full of energy, Zenith!" Phoenix whispered. "She can easily take off to some far part of the continent and live a life of her own!"

"No. She can't."

"And how the heck do you know that?"

"Because she said so. To Crimson." Zenith's bored eyes looked into Phoenix's. "She's dying."

Phoenix did a double-take. "D-dying?"

"And are you gonna trust the words of a crazed, wing mare who has nothing left to lose?"

Phoenix bit his lip. He fidgeted where he stood.

Zenith took a deep breath. "She's a pony who thinks with her heart and not with her head. I'm not about to sacrifice everything I believe in—including my future—on behalf of a pegasus' whim. How would your family feel if they learned that you died all because of an unpredictable winged ponies' subjective chivalry?"

"She could do it, Z-Zenith," Phoenix stammered. "She could stay true to her words."

"Just you see," Zenith said. "One shell, one managlider, one single spark of Ledomaritan energy gets close to that zebra and his beloved, and she'll come blurring back with that ridiculous, raspy scream of hers."

Phoenix sighed and slumped down onto his haunches. "So... wh-what are you proposing?"

"We get rid of the problems keeping her anchored to us... keeping us from going home," Zenith said, a cold glint in his eye as he held the sound stone up to his horn. "All of them."

"Huh?" Phoenix blinked, and then his lips parted. "Whoah... "

Zenith only nodded.

Phoenix bit his lip, already sweating. "Zenith..." He ran a hoof through his mane. "I-I'm not sure I'm ready to go that far just to get home."

"You'd better decide really damn soon," Zenith replied from the shadows. "Because I am."

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