A spring day
Marble Memory, Skyheart
Summer rapidly approaches, and in that vein a new phase has begun in the life of Solar Solstice, machinist stallion: it's time to restart smoothie sales! His trundles along the Square on his way to the market, carting a strange device behind him: a thing full of tubes and gars and levers and the distinct scent of fruit. 'Solar's Sensational Smoothies' reads the sign, along with pictures of oranges and mangoes and other fruits known only through trade and travel.
Marble is still trying to make up for his wife the fact they had to tear down a wall to rescue him yesterday. So, it's with great curiosity he approaches this... monstrosity Solstice is setting up.
Solar_Solstice smiles as he gets his first customer. "Hey, Mr. Memory! Welcoem to Solar's Sensational Smoothies! What do you want? Do you want orange, mango, pineapple, dragonfruit?"
"U-uh... th-that's... Doctor... Memory." Marble says nervously. Why does it matter? Marble doesn't know. "Um... d-do you have anything with... bran?" Marble says, with great anguished worry.
Solar_Solstice blinks. "Uh...you sure you don't want the yogurt shop?" he says. "I'm afraid I don't have bran right now, though I could. Hmm...there's an idea, bran in smoothies?" He muses over this for a while. It sounds very crazy, but...
Skyheart arrives at the marketplace looking somewhat frazzled and not entirely alert. He stumbles over to the stand, hoping something sweet would help calm him down.
It sounds like Marble'd be the ONLY pony in Equestria who would want a bran smoothie. "How about... a peanut butter cookie smoothie for my wife?" Marble asks.
Solar_Solstice blinks again. "We only do fruit here...but there's another idea. A peanut butter smoothie? Hmm..." He taps his chin thoughtfully and rather dramatically. "I could whip something up for next time! Still gotta figure out how to keep the cream good in the machine, though."
"Do you have anything I could give my wife so she'll forgive me?" Marble says worriedly. Clopping his hooves together nervously.
Skyheart patiently waits his turn, but he seems a bit twitchy.
"Uh...a mango-pineapple smoothie? That's a pretty popular one," said Solar.
"I'll take... three." Marble says, and says, "She's *very* mad at me."
Solar_Solstice gives Marble a long, curious look before turning around and flicking a few levers. The machine whirrs into action, the gears spinning and the tubes pumping in a medley of mechanism. "So, uh, I hope you don't mind if I ask...what exactly happened?"
"U-um... I kinda... got trapped in a ventilation duct. It was in the papers, I'm sure. They had to knock down a wall and cut me out of my wife's studio..." Marble says.
Solar_Solstice had missed a few papers thanks to his work, so this is, well, news to him, but as Marble relates his story he forces himself to nod politely and not smirk. "Oh, that kinda thing, huh? Well, nothing that a nice smoothie won't fix, uh, as it goes." The machine whirrs to a stop, and near the bottom a hatch opens to reveal three fresh cups of smoothie. "Made from fresh fruits!" Solstice declares, deftly scooping up each cup and placing it before Marble.
"Does it go? This is about as bad as the time I almost burned our kitchen down!" Marble says, distraught. He's been through a lot these past couple of days. He takes the smoothies and forgets to pay for them. "Thank you."
Solar_Solstice takes the bits happily. "Take care of yourself, Mr. Memory! The Realm kinda needs you."
Skyheart finally steps up to the counter once it seems the transaction is done. He twitches a little and rubs the back of his head. "I ah... What do you have?" he asks. He almost looks like he's either had too much coffee or gone a while without it. Hard to tell.
Marble stops right next to Skyheart and looks bewildered. "Goodness. What happened to you, Skyheart?"
Solar_Solstice notices Skyheart's condition, and it distracts him enough that he must press: "Mr. Memory's right! What's happened?"
Skyheart shakes his head. Hiw words are quick and full of almost random pauses. "M-Me...? Oh... n-nothing... I just... ah... Been working. Trying to. Didn't sleep. K-Kept going..."
Solar_Solstice gazes at Skyheart with concern for a moment before shrugging it off. Well, if he thinks he can manage... "So! I have about a dozen flavours, but I can combine them however you want. I have mango, strawberry, pineapple, orange, dragonfruit...I can even put avocado in!"
Skyheart raises a hoof and points to each of the things he wants. "Er... strawberry, raspberry, and er... uh... you have pomegranate?"
"It'll cost extra for more than two flavors," Solar Solstice says, "but sure! I've got some prepared pomegrate juice around here..ah, there!" He flicks a different set of switches, and the machine doe it's thing, whirring and spinning and chugging in a rather lively manner. Very soon, the hatch deposits a tall paper cup with Skyheart's choice of smoothie. "Here you go. Enjoy!" )
Skyheart nods a few times before taking the smoothie. "R-Right... how much is...?" he starts to fish through his bags taking out stack after stack after stack after stack after stack of poems that smelled like fresh ink. Some of them had small designs on them, a few were frostbitten, some had birdseed on it (but that might be from the bag) and a few others had stuck together. He apparently didn't let the ink dry. He finally produces an ink-stained bitpouch and plops it on the stack.
Solar_Solstice watches closely as Skyheart ruffles through his bag, concern returning. "You...you wrote all those in one night?"
Skyheart says "Huh? No no no no. That was this afternoon... er... this part... It's ah... been a work in progress. I have more." He comments as he starts to rife through his bit pouch. "What do I owe you?"
"Six bits," Solar Solstice answers. "What are you working on, exactly? It's gotta be important if you spent all this time on it."
Skyheart fishes out closer to eight to ten bits on accident and just slides them over before starting to pack up. "W-Well it's just stuff that comes to me. Had a bit of a must hit me in the back of the head with a waffle iron so... Still haven't sorted through everything yet..."
"A waffle iron? What?" Solar Solstice declares, worried. "Were you actually...wow, that's...I don't know..." He trails off, a multitude of anxieties afflicting him suddenly. "Come again?"
Skyheart rubs the back of his head. "Well... I guess that was the wrong expression to use." He packs up the rest of his papers and starts to sip at the smoothie. "Thanks."
Solar_Solstice blinks and scratches his head. "...Yeah, probably," he admits. "Anyway, I hope you get some time to relax soon. See ya later!" He waves Skyheart goodbye and awaits the next customers.
Saturday, June 14, 2014