• Published 28th Jun 2012
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A New Hero - Alex The Lone Wolf

What if there was another pony who joined the pony gang? (Look at longer description...)

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Princess Spike

"You get some rest now, Twilight." I patted her fragile-looking mane after securely tucking her in and fluffing her pillow.

"I would ask you to carry on Princess Twilight's duties, Alex…" Cadence said with a heavy sigh. "But I'm sure that's not exactly your level of expertise, is it?"

"Unfortunately, it's not." I turned around to meet her eye-to-eye. "There's no way I can handle such a tight and packed schedule like Twilight could. I'd only feel safe doing that if Twilight was by my side."

"That's what I thought…" Cadence looked worriedly out the doors, appearing as if she would bite her hooves at any given moment. "But if Twilight needs help after she wakes up, you can help her, right?"

"Yeah, of course." I enthusiastically accepted. "She's done so much for being the one to go through so many sleepless nights. It's the least I could do."

"I'm glad to hear that." Cadence expressed with some sort of relief escaping through her lips. "Let's just hope things stay on schedule and turn out for the best." She turned to Spike who was awaiting to begin his shift for keeping Twilight from being disturbed. "You've got this, right, Spike?"

"You can count on me!" He confirmed with a steady salute.

"Thank you. Let's go, Alex."

Heading back to Canterlot Castle, where the Grand Equestria Pony Summit event took place, Cadence continued to express her concern over Twilight.

"She shouldn't push herself so hard. She might hurt herself like that one day."

"I know, I know. But as long as she doesn't go like that for a week, I think she should be fine. From the entire time I've known her, she's sort of grown used to going without sleep for nights." I assured.

"Well, I'm glad that her Prince keeps a watchful eye on her whenever he can. She's really lucky to have you by her side."

"She's played an important part in my life. Like I said, it's the least I can do."

Returning the grand room holding the statue made of gemstones from every one of the delegates' hometowns, we found Spirit quietly sitting at one of the seats at a wide table set for tonight. She decided to draw to keep herself occupied as she also kept a watch over the statue.

"A lot of work has been done to try to make everything perfect for tonight." Cadence reminded, glancing upward at the mighty gemstone statue. "I'm afraid I feel a little at fault for letting Twilight do so much."

"You should ease up a little." I recommended. "She's already fast asleep. There's still a long time until tonight. I'm sure she'll be recharged by then."

"I'm sure you're right…which reminds me…" She approached me and placed a hoof on my shoulder. "Could I count on you on staying around here and making sure things aren't messed around with? I know we already have security outside, but having a pony I can trust to keep a watch in here makes me feel much more relaxed."

"No problem." I assured with a friendly smile.

She embraced me with a sweet smile before beginning to head off.

"I'm thinking I'll stop by Comet Bucks on the way back. Is there anything you two want?" She offered.

Spirit looked back from her seat. "I've never had Comet Bucks."

"Just bring us two s'more fraps." I ordered for her. I'm sure she would love it.

"Got it." Cadence nodded with a grin before she left the area.

"Well…what to do…?" I asked under my breath as I turned around and observed the enormous room devoid of nothing but objects and decorations for tonight.

I had to admit, there was nothing really interesting to keep memory of. I did what Cadence asked of me, and Spirit continued drawing. The thing that surprised me was that she seemed to keep to herself than sticking to me like glue and…well…being her usual self. Was something up with her?

I slowly roamed around as she kept her eyes on her paper.

Before I decided to approach her, I studied her for a moment and realized something…different. It wasn't something about her that was different, it was me. I remembered how being an artist was sort of a special part of who I was. However, why was it that it hasn't really been a big part lately? I don't remember the last time I did anything arty and whatnot. I still appreciated it very much, and I kind of had a talent for it, but for Celestia's sake, I don't think I've even opened the sketchbook Twilight got for me back at Rainbow Falls.

Did something change about me? Am I different pony?

I eventually shook myself out of that deep daze.

It wasn't really the time to be thinking about such things.

I approached Spirit's side to casually talk to her about what she was doing.

"What are you drawing?"

"Just stuff…" She answered pretty vaguely in a sort of unenergetic tone. She paused with her task, as if she stopped to think about something intensely before she turned to look up at me. "Hey. Do you remember a lot about Fillydelphia?"

"Some things, I guess." I responded. "Nothing too important."

She looked back at her papers and seemed to hesitate. "Do you…remember this?"

She slid a paper over to me and allowed me to take a look. The sketch didn't consist of a pony but more of a background of scenery. It looked like some kind of…rooftop that had a great view of the sky. The first thing that came to my mind was when Spirit and I would eat ice cream back in our sleep. It looked just like that, except the rooftop seemed more like an ordinary building, sort of.

I studied this picture silently for a while longer before I answered. "…it looks familiar. But nothing I'd associate with Fillydelphia."

"Oh, really?" She didn't sound surprised.

"Am I supposed to remember something like that?" I asked. "I'm sure I've never been on any rooftops in Fillydelphia."

"It's…it's nothing." She acted strangely once again.

I decided to take a seat next to her but began to think deeply once more. That's odd… If she's a part of me…and she's pretty much experienced everything I have…why would she ask if I remember something that I'm sure I've never associated myself with in the first place? What rooftop in Fillydelphia would apparently be so important to me to remember?

I closed my eyes and began searching through my memories. I wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt and possibly see if it was a memory that lost its way through my mind. Through the silent exploration, I suddenly felt some kind of familiar presence. Spirit. It was as if there was some kind of trace of her within my memories of Fillydelphia. But there was no way I would have known her since then…was there?

When did I first meet Spirit? Wasn't it that one night creeping through the Everfree Forest during the Summer Sun Celebration?

Summer Sun Celebration…


"Spirit…" I called, breaking the silence between us. "Have we…ever met in Fillydelphia?"

The pencil she had been using suddenly created a cracking sound on the paper.


"You mentioned before that we met in the Everfree Forest that one night. You were that filly I helped get back home. Yet you were part of me all along. Is it possible…that I could have seen you before that?"

She didn't answer. At least, it wasn't right away. Her face looked depressingly solemn. "That's…not an easy question to answer."

"So, you're saying that the time we first met wasn't the first time we met?" I tried to clarify.

"I'm saying that I can't tell you whether we did meet before that night or not! That's all I'm saying!"

I began feeling an uncomfortable dilemma somewhere in her tensing face. It was a really direct vibe. For some reason, even though I had no solid proof, I felt as if she was facing an extremely difficult circumstance. Almost like if she wanted to do something, but something else was stopping her from doing it.

"Spirit, why do I get the feeling there's a lot more that I don't know about you? As if the fact that you are a part of me was just the breadcrumbs?"

"There's nothing to tell alright?" She suddenly grew upset and defensive. "I'm telling you the truth. None of it matters. You might as well consider it nothing." There was a harsh pause afterwards before she spoke again. "…I'll be right back…"

She pushed herself away from the table, removed herself from the chair, and began silently walking the other direction until she disappeared through the doors. At that point, it was truly and utterly silent.

Besides the drawing she showed me, I saw several others on top of each other while the corners of each drawing peeked out. The next one on top looked like me and her. I think we were eating ice cream, but we looked different. Was it just her style maybe?

Spirit held her head downwards when she came back. The first thing that came out of her mouth was an apology.

"Sorry… I didn't mean to get so worked up…"

"It's okay." I assured. "Maybe I was getting too nosy anyway. Whatever happened happened anyway, right? There's really no point talking about something that's already done and out of the way."

"Mm." She merely mumbled.

I decided to change the topic towards her drawing. "Hey, you're a really great drawer though."

"O-oh. T-thanks!" She seemed to be hit a little with surprise there. "It's all I've ever really gotten to do, I guess."

"Well, you know what?" I began as I directed her eyes over to the results of her creativity. "I think they're really cute. You could probably make comic books or something."

"Nah…" She subtly dismissed.

I shrugged. "Just saying."

I guess it's not like she would need to anyway unless she was doing it for the fun of it.

There were a couple of knocks before a princess walked in with a tray holding a couple of sweet drinks.

"Hey, you two!" Cadence greeted us, levitating our drinks towards us. "How have things been?"

"Calm, for the most part." I accepted the refreshment and quickly got to work on it. "I don't really think there's anything to worry about here."

"Maybe…" Cadence's voice suddenly dropped in confidence. "But I'm not so sure about outside the castle."

"What do you mean?" I asked in concern.

"I ran into Spike a little while ago." She recalled. "Apparently, he's been taking care of Twilight's duties for her."

"Isn't that a good thing?" Spirit questioned.

"If it were any simple task, it would very much be welcomed, but we're talking about princess duties. Things to do with the summit. I don't like saying this, but I'm not so sure I feel okay with Spike handling such things. I don't want him to be taking advantage of Princess Twilight's title."

"Really?" I pulled away the straw from my lips, growing uncomfortable with the idea she presented. "I'd think he's doing whatever he can just to help Twilight. You did ask him to keep her from being undisturbed with her sleep."

"I did…but something just doesn't sit right with me…"

Ironically, a small purple dragon wobbled in with a bowl full of gems. "By order of the princess." He stated with a satisfied grin on his face, pulling a chair out and plopping down on it with a heavy sigh of relief. "Princess life is good!" He then threw a gem into his mouth and chewed loudly.

The three of us each exchanged somewhat uncomfortable yet concerned looks before Cadence proceeded to approach him. "It sure is, but it's also hard work, isn't it?"

"Eh, it's not so bad." He mentioned carelessly, reaching out for another gem to consume.

That sounded awfully unwelcomed. If it wasn't so bad, then Twilight wouldn't be overworked like she is now, would she?

"Spike, I'm concerned you might be abusing your relationship with Twilight." Cadence shared solemnly.

"What are you talking about? I'm a great princess—" He immediately paused once he realized his slip-up. "I mean, Twilight's a great princess! And I've been working hard to help her! When two delegates had a falling out, I'm the one who fixed their friendship! I listened to that pony drone on about gems for forty-five minutes so Twilight wouldn't have to! I moved a polo match away from the tower so she could sleep! And I didn't even eat that delicious looking statue!" He pointed to the one and only statue we had been staying in the hall for hours for. "I'm a decision-making master!" Nevertheless, Cadence only returned a diluted expression of disbelief and rebuke to cut through his fluff. "Okay." He surrendered with a sigh. "So maybe I did get a little carried away making decisions. But it's not like anything bad happened."

Immediately the moment after, water suddenly found its way gushing through a window after having broken it to pieces.

"Aah!" Spirit cried out and flinched at the sight of it.

I grabbed a hold of her and took her as far above away from the water as much as I could.

Spike and Cadence were washed away by the heavy current until they were able to find dry surface.

"This is unexpected!" Spike announced from atop of the upside-down floating table, hugging himself on one of the legs.

"I'll go shut off the main!" She instructed. "You all get rid of the water!"

I placed Spirit on the platform that was high enough away from the water which Cadence had left from. I looked around and analyzed the scene. Spike was frantically attempting to scoop out the water keeping him afloat with the bowl that had carried his gems. However, it literally did nothing as all the water he scooped out only landed in a different area of the same pool. How was I supposed to get rid of this water?! I didn't think I could just teleport it all away. If Twilight was here, she'd probably know what to do!

The only thing I could come up with at the time was possibly breaking a lower window to allow the water to drain outside. However, it appeared that something else beat me to it. All the water had unexpectedly lowered before only small puddles were left behind.

"No!" I heard Spirit groan in distress, causing me to quickly come to her side.

"What's wrong? Are you okay?" I asked.

"My drawings…" Her words trembled through her lips. "They're trash now!"

Her drawings were indeed in a horrible state. In fact, they looked like soggy napkins and any tiny attempt to move them whatsoever resulted in an easy tear.

I stood there in silence, trying to think of the best thing to say. The only thing that came up was just a simple apology, but I felt it needed more earnest emotion behind it. However, before I could think of my response thoroughly enough, there was a loud and sharp sound of shattering glass, but it wasn't a window this time. As Spirit and I threw our heads back towards the source of this sound, we saw piles of various types of a gems scattered among the floor. It didn't hit me until I realized that the statue was nowhere in sight.

"Oh, my! What is the meaning of this?!" A familiar voice demanded in a sophisticated tone while a shouting mob followed behind.

"Well, uh, you see, there was this polo game, and—" Spike began oddly responding.

"How could you let a water main burst on Canterlot's most important day?!" It was Fancy Pants with the quite furious face.

"Hey, don't look at me! Princess Twilight said to stop working on it!" The pony in charge of public works quickly defended himself.

Princess Twilight? She wasn't the one making the decisions…

"Well, what about these trees?! I ordered them trimmed to avoid just such a situation!" Fancy Pants confronted another.

"But the princess told me to stop, bub!" He replied with the same excuse.

His fuming eyes shot towards me now. Oh no… "Prince Alexander. I demand answers towards Princess Twilight's recklessness! Why would the princess make such horrible decisions?! This all could have been prevented!"

"I…I…" I didn't have a proper response to give. With a short sigh, I tried to settle down the situation as much as I possibly could. "Look, Princess Twilight hasn't been making these decisions."

I was given hardly a second to continue before he demanded the pony responsible.

"Who has then?!"

"W-well…" What was I going to do? I can't let Twilight take the heat for something she didn't do, and I definitely didn't want to throw Spike under the bus even though he had been making such decisions for her. It definitely felt wrong. With all these delegates and officials practically literally breathing down my neck, I felt as if I had no choice but to just sacrifice myself. "You see…I…"

"Please, everypony, listen! I'm so sorry all this happened!" Spike suddenly cried out, catching their attention. "It was nopony's fault! It was all me!"

"Your fault?" Fancy Pants responded. "You said these decisions came from Princess Twilight!"

"Decisions?" A new voice broke through the crowd.

The angry mob had looked back and soon created a split piece of space between them so the source of the voice could be seen. It was Twilight, and she looked a lot more focused and rejuvenated than before. Nevertheless, she was confused, and once the crowd allowed her to take a look and realize the state the room was in, she gasped loudly. "What happened here?!"

"Twilight!" Spike immediately jogged towards her and hugged her legs tightly once he reached her. "I'm sorry! I didn't mean for all this to happen! I wanted you sleep and remain undisturbed. And there was this bird, and, well... long story short, I made a few decisions on your behalf…"

"A few decisions?!" Twilight still appeared to be in complete shock and disbelief as the result of a chaotic chain of recklessness around her locked her eyes completely.

"Well, maybe more than a few, but I had good intentions! Honest!" It took Twilight to send him a scolding look of doubt and disbelief to motivate him to tell the apparent whole truth. "Until I... didn't anymore. I'm sorry, Twilight. I guess I got a little carried away. It-it just felt so good to have ponies caring about my opinions on such important matters. I guess I was just enjoying feeling like a princess."

"Well, Spike, one of the most important things a princess can do is realize when she's made a mistake and fix it." Twilight approached him with a solution.

"How do I do that?"

"You could start with them." Yet another new voice emerged from the crowd, revealing another princess. It was Princess Cadence presenting the angry but silent mob before her whom were surprisingly patient enough to not cause a ruckus through all the apologetic confessing.

Spike drew a heavy sigh in preparation to fess up and take responsibility for his actions. "Uh, hi there, everypony. So I guess I owe you all a pretty big apology. It's funny. Here we are at a summit that brings together ponies from all across Equestria, and all I could think about was myself. You all came here to celebrate the things that make each of our cities so unique and special. But instead of getting into the spirit of things like all of you, I used my friend's position to make myself feel good." After picking up a sapphire off of the floor next to him, he proceeded to walk towards a pile of gems that had fell apart and tried to piece them all back together.

The princesses and I exchanged looks with one another before we heard Fancy Pants speak with the anger no longer present in his voice. "The Canterlot ruby goes here, old sport." He directed once seeing Spike fail at rebuilding statue all by himself.

"And ours goes here, don't'cha know?" Another of the delegates had offered to help.

"Looks like you could definitely use a pair of flying hooves." I approached, willing to help him in any way I could.

After all the assistance and directions from the delegates, we had the statue built in virtually no time. If you count each delegate placing his or her gem on the statue, it was easy to see how fast it was to place every piece back together. But of course, it was only because everyone chimed in together that made this possible. Keeping the entire blame onto Spike only would just make everything more miserable.

"Does this mean you forgive me?" Spike asked the crowd after taking sight of the completed statue.

"Sure! You know, the whole idea of the statue is that when each of us plays our own small part, it adds up to somethin' great." A delegate answered.

"Quite. Just like how all our cities make up the beautiful land of Equestria!" Fancy Pants agreed.

"I hereby dedicate the Citizens of Equestria statue to everypony who plays their part, no matter how big or how small!" Princess Cadence proudly announced.

"If I may speak for a quick moment…" I interjected myself as a speaker for the crowd. "I know what happened here today was obviously unfortunate. But maybe…despite everything…it was something needed? It seems to me that sometimes tragedies are important for us because they allow us to see things that we take advantage of when they're really necessary to our lives the majority of the time. Had it not been for this tragedy, we may have never realized how important it is to come together at a time of need. That's what makes this summit so important in the first place, and all you reacted just perfectly in showing your forgiveness and compassion. You didn't keep grudges and expect the one responsible to fix everything. And because of that, when you all worked together, the statue was fixed in no time."

Twilight stepped by my side to add in. "Our prince is absolutely right. You all have shown a great gesture of friendship, and that's what this summit is all about. If none of you don't mind, we'd really appreciate if you could stay and help clean up the area for tonight. We don't have much time left, but with everypony's help, I'm sure we'd get the place fixed up in no time!"

After applause and cheers were heard from the crowd, they immediately went to work. Spike was lastly given a particularly interesting bouquet of flowers that suddenly caused him to have swollen eyes and intense sniffles. "Aw, come on!"

Everypony watching was apparently struck with horror and suspense as they could only watch him inhale greatly that would evidently lead to a large sneeze. Seeing how these flowers were present back when the gem statue had been broken apart, I realized that they must have been the cause for the repairs in the first place.

However, before I could do anything about it, Spirit suddenly showed up in front of him, holding her hoof to Spike's nose just before he was about to sneeze. This fortunately stopped the sneeze, but Spirit still seemed to retain the look she had when she saw her destroyed drawings.

"T-thanks." He wiped his nose as I quickly removed the bouquet of troublesome flowers so he wouldn't sneeze again. He inhaled once more and then noticed Spirit's expression. "Hey, what's wrong?"

It appeared she held back tears as her eyes adverted to the side. "You all fixed your statue…but…" Her head felt downwards as she picked up a piece of torn and soaked paper. "But…my drawings are still broken…" She sniffled and sounded as if she was going to break down crying. "And… I don't think they're ever going to be fixed again…"

"Oh my gosh!" Spike placed a claw in front of his mouth at the sight of constantly splitting paper. "I'm so sorry! That was because of the…water…wasn't it…"

Spirit sadly nodded.

"I can fix it! I promise!" Spike seemed to promise something that he didn't exactly think through. I wasn't sure how he was going to pull it off, but I decided we could focus on something that could keep both Spirit and her thoughts occupied in the meantime.

"Hey, Spike…" I called for his attention, stopping him from picking up the pieces of paper. "Why don't you treat Spirit to something special? Maybe an ice cream or milkshake? I'm sure that'll make her feel better."

Spirit turned to me in slight surprise, but she didn't exactly look any better.

"Yeah, no problem!" He turned to Spirit. "Would do you say, Spirit?! Will you please let me try to make it up to you?"

She didn't answer for a moment so she could wipe off any stray tears from her eyes and face. "Okay…"

"Great! Come on!" He eagerly led her out the doors, but she sadly followed behind, keeping her head low.

"I feel so bad…" Cadence shared. "Can her drawings really not be fixed?"

"They're torn to pieces and extremely soaked." I picked up one of the pieces with my hoof. I studied them for a minute before the expression on my face grew yearning. "But…that doesn't exactly mean we can't try…can we?"

"What do you suggest we do?" Twilight asked.

"Can you bring back a hairdryer or something, Twilight?" I asked. "Anything to dry these up quickly."

"Sure, I'm on it." Twilight accepted before she flew out the broken window at the top.

"What's the big idea?" Cadence asked in concern and approached me as I carefully attempted to grab each piece off the floor with my magic.

"If we could piece back the gems for the statue, then I'm sure we could do the same for these drawings even though it looks impossible." I couldn't lie. Arranging the pieces was like a jigsaw puzzle. Some pieces were big and clear enough to identify and piece together. However, some were small and almost impossible to find out where they went.

Twilight arrived with a hairdryer by the time I had already pieced several together. I requested they continue for me while I went out and looked for something to serve as the base for all these pieces. I returned with foam board and glue and began attaching all the pieces that had already been dried and arranged. Though it may have seemed hard at first, with the help of Twilight and Cadence, we were able to fix these drawings for the most part.

We placed the foam board face down so it wouldn't be easily identified once Spirit and Spike returned. Spike jogged over to us as Spirit lagged behind with a sulking frown.

"I don't think she's feeling any better." Spike whispered and slapped his face with his claw. "I'm so stupid!"

"Don't worry, Spike." I assured. "We managed to do something together that'll hopefully turn that frown upside down."

"Huh?" Spike stood confused as I turned to Spirit to call her over.

"Spirit. We all got a little surprise for you."

"What…?" She lifted her head and asked softly.

"Come over here." I encouraged her and waited until she finally arrived at the table we had finished the work on. "When you saw how your drawings were after they had been soaked and torn, you thought they were trash, but that's not true."

"They are." She bitterly disagreed. "What do you expect to do with paper like that? Keeping them would only be hoarding trash. They belong in the dump."

"You should have more pride in your work, Spirit…" I told her softly, keeping her unable to speak with her quivering lips. I smiled and prepared to flip over the foam board. "How do you explain this then?"

At that point, I picked up the foam board and presented it in front of me with my magic. Twilight and Cadence joined in with bright grins to record Spirit's reaction.

Spirit at first furrowed her eyebrows in confusion, as if she didn't understand what she was looking at. However, in a matter of seconds, it became clear. The pieces of her drawings were all together, and every little piece now combined to reveal the bigger picture.

"I know it's not perfect…but it's better than just being 'trash', right?" I stated. "It'd be a waste to throw away such a talented artist's work, but like I said, maybe the work become so much more meaningful by what happened. Because it took Twilight, Cadence, Spike, and me to get to the result of this. And if you ask me…I think it's kind of better this way."

Spirit continued staring at this masterpiece in silence. She carefully took hold of it with her hooves and stared intensely at it with tears welling up in her eyes. She sucked in her lips and almost tossed the piece over to the table to the side. She immediately squeezed me with all her might as I began to feel the coat on my chest began to dampen. "Thank you so much…everyone." She continuously sniffled and cried as I patted her on the back.

We prepared to take the train back to Ponyville after tonight's summit.

"You forgive me too, right…?" Spike worriedly asked Spirit.

Spirit shared a bright grin. "Of course."

Afterwards, she gave him a meaningful hug.

"Despite today…It was nice seeing all of you." Cadence shared.

"You too, Princess Cadence." Twilight responded. "It was fun. Even though I had to go through all those sleepless nights." She giggled.

"You should take care of yourself more, you know?" Cadence delicately and caringly ran her hoof through Twilight's mane.

"I'll be fine, I swear." Twilight assured. "I gotta do the most I can while I'm still young. Besides, I've got the prince of shining light over here." She glanced towards me with a small smile.

"I'll keep an eye on her." I promised Cadence with a small chuckle.

She hugged the both of us before she allowed us to board the train. "Take care. I'll see you real soon."

Spirit made sure to hug Cadence goodbye before she joined us on board.

We gathered together in a grouped section by the window where Spirit continued to gaze at her work every now and then.

"Thank you so much…really…" She expressed very softly once again. "Just when I thought there was no point…or use trying to fix things…you all did it for me…"

"You're our friend, Spirit." Twilight truthfully said. "It's what we do. We look out for each other and pick up each other when we take a big fall."

Spirit looked up and lightly stared at Twilight for a moment before she returned to her work. "Can we…really be friends…?"

Twilight chuckled at that question. "Of course. Why wouldn't we be able to?"

Spirit remained silent for a moment before she lightly shook her head. "Thanks, Twilight."

Twilight and I turned to see each other. She lifted a smile at me, and I returned the favor.

However, going over today, there was so much I didn't know about Spirit, even after all that she said when we got the castle in Ponyville. The question is… Is it important info worth going through the hassle to learn? She obviously doesn't feel comfortable sharing such info with me, despite trusting me completely.

When you can't share information with somepony, despite being able to tell them practically anything, doesn't that mean that that particular information could possibly harm said pony? For instance, she didn't want to tell me that she was a part of me because she thought I would never believe her and probably stop talking to her. But the thing is… I believe her. I believe she's a part of me and she's pretty much even proved that. So, what is it that she's keeping from me? Again, that's the question.

Is it worth finding out?

Only Time Will Tell.

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