OLYMPONIS - FORGE COMMONS - SO LATE IN THE EVENING IT'S PROBABLY MORNING
Shale Strata walks quietly to the huge and renovated lobby of the Forge, looking around for all the details that have been polished and renovated in him and Amethyst's absence. He stops to look at the statue of Swift Wing, still looking poised for battle in stony silence, facing some unseen foe.
Shale Strata walks a bit closer, sitting down in front of the statue.
Shale Strata looks up, smiling softly: "...damn you. You did it, in the end. I'm still not sure how, but we all owe you." He sighs a bit, though it is a happy sigh of contentment: "Olymponis thrives now. Without me or Amethyst intervening, even. So we can enjoy..."
Shale Strata blushes a bit, smiling fondly at some obvious memories: "Well, you can probably guess." He looks back up at that silent statue: "Anyway... I possibly owe you the biggest apology of all." He blushes a bit more: "...and a 'thank you' of huge order of magnitude. I... felt you. And now I am here, talking to you as though you could listen."
Shale Strata chuckles a bit, but continues his silent, barely audible musings: "...damn you, I really did feel for you too. When I was... well, you know. Her." He looks down, sighing a bit: "Though that does leave me confused a bit..." he lifts a purple forehoof he did not have a few weeks ago: "...and I'm not just talking about this."
Shale Strata looks back up at the silent stone: "I guess you have no more answers to me. Possibly for the best."
Shale Strata chuckles softly and shakes his head, getting up. He takes a few steps away, then looks once more to the statue: "It was nice talking to you, regardless. Thank you, Swift Wing... thank you." He starts walking away, his mind obviously cleared by the 'conversation'.
THE REGAL BEDROOM - A FEW MOMENTS LATER
Shale Strata walks to the room, trying to be quiet as he moves to the bed in the darkness.
Amethyst Vein rolls over at the sound of Shale's return, sitting up in the darkened bed. "Shale?"
Shale Strata nods, then realizes it's completely dark so it's not of much use and coughs softly instead: "Yes, it's me. Couldn't sleep, went for a walk."
Amethyst Vein gets out of the bed and walks over to give Shale a quick nuzzle before continuing on to the window. She draws aside the curtain and looks out and down. "I understand. It's... a bit hard being back... especially when they went and changed everything on it." She digs a hoof into the soft white cloud of the floor. "Especially now that we live in a cloud..."
Shale Strata follows Amethyst to the window, nuzzling her neck again: "Yes... I feel like I don't know what I am supposed to do here." He smiles a bit: "Well, aside from the obvious with you, love."
Amethyst Vein laughs a bit and drapes a wing over Shale. "We can do that anywhere, though." She sighs softly, though it's not clear whether the sigh is happy or melancholy. "Everything is changing, including us."
Shale Strata leans a bit: "Yes... when we came back the other day, I was not prepared for everything that had changed." He chuckles a bit: "Did we really hold things back that much, or did the Council want to surprise us? Or both?"
Amethyst Vein laughs. "Probably a little of both. I like to think that we might have been too worried about our own problems to really listen to what the council wanted. But a few renovations doesn't fix Olymponis. We have to change its ponies too. The time has come to stop looking to the past, to stop looking to tomorrow, but to look ahead to our future..."
Shale Strata raises an eyebrow, looking at Amethyst in the low light: "That may well be... but talking with the Council members after we came back, I get the feeling us two might be the only ponies who have been staring at past greatness, for the most part at least."
Amethyst Vein walks back to the bed and flops down. "Maybe. But these sound like questions for tomorrow, I think."
Shale Strata follows Amethyst to the bed: "Yes." He pauses, not sure if he wants to bring it up, but decides to do it anyway: "Amethyst, I... I..." He flops down next to her, not sure how to phrase this: "At times, I feel... a bit... wrong." He sighs, breathing in Amethyst's mane scent.
Amethyst Vein cuddles up against Shale and rests her chin over his neck. "Wrong?"
Shale Strata whispers in a soft voice barely audible: "Like... like that other lifetime was the right one, at least in one sense. Like I am... maybe not quite the stallion I thought I was."
Amethyst Vein hugs Shale close. "Oh... well... you were in my head... and Monolyth's magic is very strong... maybe it's just an after-effect?" She kisses at his cheek. "Hopefully it will pass."
Shale Strata swallows a bit, but turns to kiss Amethyst: "You are probably right, my dear. Maybe it's nothing, and I'm just worrying over it for no reason."
Amethyst Vein hugs Shale close. "I hope so... we should talk to Sue again and have her make sure that the link wore off correctly."
Shale Strata hugs, nodding a bit as he nuzzles Amethyst's neck: "Yes, that would be for the best I think. But for now, I think... we should sleep some. These things probably make more sense in the morning."
Amethyst Vein kisses Shale softly. "Hopefully. But I want you to be happy..."
Shale Strata kisses back: "I am happy with you, at least. I will worry about this if Sue doesn't find anything strange on us and it persists." His tone betrays some of his own doubts, but he doesn't voice those.
Amethyst Vein squeezes Shale closer and closes her eyes. "It'll be OK..."
Shale Strata hugs Amethyst tight, soon drifting to sleep.
Amethyst Vein follows Shale into sleep soon after.