Better Late Than Never
IC date: Winter 54, 1007
OOC date: 2/11
Location: Horseshoe Harbor, Town Square
PCs: Windrose, Skyshear
NPCs:
GM:

After the last few weeks one was almost glad to have plain good old fashion snow. In fact, it had been a busy day involving snow, making up for what was melted and soggy from the final tantrum of the maelstrom before it was snuffed out for good. But there was more than just snow to handle.

Windrose flapped her wings to land next to the fountain and tucked them to her sides as she pulled a thermometer out of her vest, and leaned over to stick it in the pool surrounding the centerpiece of the square. After a moment she lifted back up to check. "Good, good, water should be properly frosty by tomorrow and refreeze in a few days."

When it comes to weather, things need to be done in triplicate, and at least three weeks in advance. So even though the Harbor has been having some interesting times lately with missing weather ponies back in Autumn and now with the reports of a massive maelstrom on the way to make the entire place slide into the ocean, the requests for new weather ponies have been slow going. Very slow going. First they needed to assess the situation. Then they needed to assess the abilities of the weather ponies waiting to be dispatched to a city. And THEN…

… Talk about a mess, right? Right. But have no fear, because beurocracy comes out on top for once!

Fomf! A blue pegasus bursts through one of the snow clouds above in a dive. She's clinging to what looks like an orange snowboard, although none of her hooves are currently in its straps. Flight saddlebags are wrapped around her midsection, and are bulging with her belongings. "Alright, girl! This is your first real assignment!" Skii goggles instead of regular flight goggles are on her face, obscuring half of it. "Let's show these harbor ponies how to really cut some wind!"

Wings flare out when she gets close to the ground, and she slows her decent rapidly. She's already wriggling her way out of her saddlebags by the time she's only a few feet from the ground. "Okay! Somepony point me at the maelstrom!"

Yup, beurogracy in action! Two days too late.

"Welp, that about wraps up for the night." Tucking the thermometer away, Windrose starts to talk off… only to end up dropping back to the ground to duck as something comes shooting by overhead. .. on a snowboard?

Ears perk as she looks up, her directional tenacity picking out which way the flying form landed, and hurries in that direction herself. "Skyshear?!"

Which naturally is followed by the appropriate greeting for such occasions… that is, a flying tackle for hugging.

Whump, Skyshear's saddlebags drop on the ground next to her. The cloudboard is handled with a bit more care. "Looks like it hasn't hit here yet. That's odd," Skyshear says, readjusting her tinted goggles slightly. "They said it was urgent. Maybe- Huh?" Sky's ears lift up at the sound of her name.

And then WHUD, she finds herself being reintroduced with the ground rather forcibly. "Oohf, oww…" Skyshear mutters, as she shifts around to try and get a good look at her 'attacker'. "Who the hay-…" She pauses when she gets a better look at that curly mane. "Windrose!?" And then the hugger becomes the huggee, "Heey! Long time no see! They brought you in to deal with the Maelstrom too, huh?"

At least the hug is good helping a pony up as well. "Pffff. I've been here for a few months. Relatively speaking." Part of that was spent in an alternate reality. Does that count? She's not going to think too hard about it. "I just kinda got wrangled into helping because they were short hooves and…" Then she stops as her thought process backs up a few paces, and her ears flick to the sides. "Wait. They only -just now- processed the requests for weather assistance?

Cue slapping the hoof of the foreleg not hugging her friend to her face. "Typical…"

Once Skyshear is back on her hooves, she pulls her off kilter goggles back straight upon her muzzle. "You bet!" She flashes the fussy pony a bright grin, not even bothering to worry that her tumble has her side all damp and muddy. "And guess what, MY turn came up!" She seems pretty happy about it, too. "Battling a maelstrom…" She almost sounds in awe, "Now THAT is what a weather pony should be doing, not stuck doing stupid weather reports." She makes a face in disgust at the work she'd been assigned to out of a lack of city positions coming up. "If I show them what I've got, maybe they'll finally let me get out of the factory for good!"

She looks around quickly, ears perked up. "So where is it? I thought that a maelstrom would have more storm-ness."

Windrose groans softly. Mostly because now she's the one stuck with letting her friend down. "Uh.. well… you know how we always joke about how long it takes Cloudsdale's beaucracy to get anything done?" She turns Skyshear towards the harbor and waves a hoof. "They -just- smashed down that weird spire that was causing it, like, this weekend." She doesn't mention it involved -flying- a ship into it, that would just be rubbing salt in the wound.

"But!" Quickly she hugs the other pegasus back to her side. "That doesn't mean we couldn't use another trained set of wings. It's a port town, always need somepony to look after the weather, make sure the ships can get in and out."

Then her tone drops into a snarky one. "Trust me. This place attracts weirdness like the north pole attracts a magnet."

"Sure. We all know it doesn't take three weeks to fill a snow order," Skyshear waves a hoof dismissively, "But they make ponies do it anyway because they get lost half the time before they get to the snow department. What's that got to…" The realization slooowwly dawns upon Skyshear as Windrose continues talking. She looks out towards the harbor where there /should/ have been a maelstrom, her ears drooping down steadily in disapointment. "Oh this has got to be some sort of joke." She looks back to Windrose pleadingly, "Tell me you're joking."

It's pretty obvious that she's not joking.

Windrose rubs the back of her head with her other hoof. "If it makes you feel any better, my first week here I spent turned back into a foal because of some weird poison joke mojo. Be glad you didn't get stuck with that! On the bright side." She points up at the sky. "We do -actual weather- here, not just fill out requests for everything. I mean, a lot of us are just making due with instinct and determination. I'm sure Jellybean would love to have somepony with actual training!"

She pauses for a moment, and then leans closer to Skyshear as she lowers her voice into a conspiratorial tone. "And the clouds stay fluffy and light longer without traffic to tromp all over them. I bet the summer winds from the shore are wonderful for surfing." At least she knows her friend well enough to know where to dangle the temptations?

Skyshear lets out a groan of longing. Not just at the thought of doing /actual/ weather instead of just getting to write or read about it. But at the thought of being able to skysurf on good, fresh clouds and get some good wind off of the sea. "Real weather? Not just, you know, looking at it?" Her wings give a little, excited flutter, and she grins, "And clouds that don't ride like they're their made of wood? Wind that isn't stale as two month old bread?" This was her kind of place! But wait…

She shakes her head quickly to clear the daydreams. In an instant, Skyshear is off of the ground, and hovering right in front of Windrose almost nose to nose. "It doesn't matter! As soon as they hear out that there's no Maelstrom, they'll yank me right back to the factory! This place isn't due to get a full time weather pony for who knows how long!" She grabs Windrose by the shoulders, and shakes her a few times. "I don't want to go back there, Windy! I'm going to die of boredom!"

Then something clicks after a second, and she pauses. "Wait, really a foal?" She giggles, "Somepony better have gotten a picture of that."

Windrose deadpans, "Now you see why I struck out on my own instead of waiting for an assignment?" The rest of her snark remark gets interrupted by a shaking with enough vigor to make her curls bounce like a bin of rubber balls. "Skyshear, get ahold of yourself!" She puts her hooves on the other pegasus' shoulders and gives her a little shove to snap her out of it. "… Not that I can't blame you for it. But relax. You've got time to find something. If it took this long for the assignment to get filed, imagine how long it would take a recall to get through."

Followed by a pause, and then her expression flattens. "No, nopony got any pictures." Somepony probably totally got pictures.

Luckily, Skyshear isn't allowed to get worked up into an impulsive panic. That's the good thing about having somepony who knows how impulsive she can be to think ahead. Skyshear lets out a few breaths, and swipes a forehoof through her bangs to get it settled back into place.. "Yeah, yeah, you're right. Course you're right. Heh, maybe they'll even forget that they sent me out here!" They won't forget that they sent her out here. But still, there is a point. "No problem, right? We just have to prove that this place needs another full time weather pony!" She nods her head sage-like. "Yeah, perfect! And if it took this long just to get me out here, I've at least got until the end of the month!"

They won't outright forget, weather administration isn't -that- bad. But as she just cut short one panic attack Windrose isn't going to point that out. Because the lengthy delay is still pretty likely. "Who knows, maybe just the fact that there's likely to be a lot more ship traffic after what's happened will be enough." She flares her wings to stretch, then flaps a few times to lift off the ground and hover. "Com'n, lets find you someplace to stay. Inn probably has a room for a day or two." She grins somewhat anxiously. "I would offer to stay with me buuuuuut I'm staying with other ponies as is and it would be kind of rude to just drop in with another pony on top of that."

"Yeah!" At least the cheerful Skyshear is much better to be around than a panicy one. Without even touching the ground, she picks her saddlebags up by a forehoof, then snags her cloud board by one of the hoof straps. It dangles from the hoof, making it look a little odd. "Here I was going to ask you if I can bunk with you! But that'll work till I at least get settled in and you can still show me around the place!" She raises her brows slightly, "Oh yeah? Heh, well where you're bunking is none of my business!" She flashes a grin over at the other pegasus, "Pretty good to see you again though."

"I know right? Kinda ironic you'd get sent to the same place I've been settling in." Windrose starts to meander away from the square. "Jellybean is in charge of the weather work here, maybe he'll know of a loophole or something. But enough shop talk!… Just don't believe anything you hear about not being pirates. That's a big fat lie just to keep the tourists from panicing."

"Right, I'll go pester the guy in the morning! There's got to be a way to let me stay here." Skyshear then blinks. Somepony could almost see the gears churning in her head as she tries to make sense about that last sentence. "Uh. So wait, there really are pirates?" What was the first hint? The ponies with eye patches? "… Well that's pretty cool. I don't have to worry about locking up my board and stuff, do I?" At least she's taking THAT well.

"There's pirates. But they're not necessarily -bad- pirates," Windrose explains… which doesn't really explain a whole lot, but pirates get picky over such definitions. "And there's zebras. And griffons. And… y'know." She turns to look to the other pegasus as they wander closer to the main part of town. "Seaponies really exist."

"Whoa, whoa, whoa, back up there," Skyshear stops in mid air, and turns to peer at her friend. "Pirates I can buy. Good pirates I can buy too. And Zebras and griffons too…" Wait for it… "… But is that seriously the price of apple pies over here?" She asks, pointing over Windrose's shoulder at a nearby vendor.

Windrose ehs, turning to look where pointed. "Well, it is the off season for apples. It'll probably go down again at summer." She turns the other way and points down the street. "You see the building over there? The salon. That's the Mane Event, that's where I stay." As the resident bedwarmer, but that's an entirely different story and she really doesn't feel like trying to explain The Winter Nightmare on top of everything else. "Ruby was one of the first ponies I met when I came here, and she's been nice enough to let me crash there when I feel like it."

"That's actually pretty good compared to Cloudsdale," Skyshear admits, eyeing one of those pies with a bit of longing. It was a long flight! But she turns her attention back on her friend instead, ignoring the gnawing in her belly for now. "Oh yeah?" Skyshear smirks, and flicks a hoof at one of Windrose's carefully curled curls, "You never did like being far away from the styling stuff! But neat that you found someone cool to help you out." She grins jokingly, ducking away before she gets a swat aimed at her. "So what's the night life like over here? Any clubs or anything?"
Windrose pfffs at the playful teasing, and flicks Skyshear's mane in return. "And you just roll your head in a cloud instead of brushing in the morning!", she retorts in kind. "I don't know about clubs, but," she flies up a bit higher so she can point over the buildings towards were the rugged and ragged Rusty Bucket was back in it's moorings, "you can party in the only tavern that helped save the world!"

After a moment she grunts. "No, seriously. When the Captain's ship got stranded they fixed that thing up to seaworthiness to go looking for answers while us weather ponies and some seapony soldiers kept the storm from getting any tickier than it already was."

"I comb!" Skyshear retorts, huffing at Windrose. "Sort of. Maybe a little bit." She just never really bothered with it the same way that Windrose did. Like, at all. But it's still clean! In a quick beat of her wings, Skyshear rises up above the rooftops to get a glimpse at the tavern. And rolls her eyes at Windrose. "Did you practice that or something? Because that sounded like it was from a brochure," She teases, grinning. "That's still pretty crazy. Maybe I'll get some good stories out of the ponies who got to deal with the thing if I hang out there!" At least she's not TOO sour about missing things.

Windrose shrugs her shoulders a little. "You here a lot of what goes on without being there when you spend a good part of your day flying overhead." Then follows it with a smirk. "You want a story? I'll have to tell you about the Winter Nightmare once you get settled in." She levels out her wings and glides down to land in front of one of the less ramshackle looking buildings. "Here's the Inn. If I run into Jellybean before you do I'll let him know there's another weatherpony in town. Or just look for the weather shed. There's not a lot of cloud buildings here, it's not hard to find." There's, like, two. Maybe three.

"Hah, been getting into trouble without me, huh?" Skyshear smirks, gliding alongside Windrose down to the inn, "I'll take you up on that later!" Her stomach growls in an attempt to get her attention towards the fact that it's empty. "… After I've got something to eat. The flight here isn't exactly like a flight down Cumulus street." When they land, Skyshear swings the board up and tucks it underneath one of her wings where it's going to be out of the way. The saddlebags are thrown somewhat haphazardly over one shoulder, and end up lying half on her wings and half on her back. "Thanks, Windy. I'm going to owe you one if this gets me out of the factory perminantly. I'll see you later, huh?"

Windrose grabs the other pegasus in a brief hug, though doesn't make a big show out of it since they're right in front of what's likely a very public place with how often sailors and traders come through. "Sure thing. Don't worry, we'll figure something out. It was great seeing you again Sky!" She flits her wings afterwards to get back in the air, though waiting for her friend to actually head inside before taking off again.

"What, me? Worry?" Skyshear grins in spite of herself. So what if she was panicking just a little while ago. "I'm totally under control." She leans very briefly into the hug, before starting into the inn. "Catch you later, Windy!" She calls back, waving a hoof. Then a little more eagerly, hurries in to get a room checked out. Maybe not the assignment she was looking for, but she'll certainly take it anyway!