White Knight Syndrome
IC date: Spring 62, 1007
OOC date: May 21, 2012
PCs: Blackbird, Rusty-Gears, Mad-Mare
NPCs: Rock-em, Sock-em
GM: None

It's been four days since the harbor's been blocked off, and the wonderful ponies of Horseshoe Harbor have so far treated it like an extended weekend. Sure, a few boats have been shot at, and they've done a decent job of keeping anything from sailing in or out, but how badly has it really impacted the fair residents? Why, some of the very organization that's keeping sailing from happening have ended up being the local tavern's best customers! What kind of blockade keeps local business afloat with their own bits?

The kind that wants to build a reputation apparently. Tonight there was a celebration in the Rusty Bucket, a celebration that has wound down to embers, leaving many patrons to stagger to their homes, or to other places to drink even more than they already have.

The ones that had put on the party? They've stumbled out to wander the harbor, eyeing buildings with greedy, if tipsy gazes, hardly mindful of any other pony that might unwittingly step in front of them. A curiously off-white mare, flanked on either side by two brown and burly 'goons', the three of them wander down the street, singing the most off-key, loudest, and filthiest song they can put their trio of voices to. Far as they're concerned, a good way to end a night of 'getting to know' (read bribe with booze) the locals.

On this lovely evening, Blackbird has invited Rusty out to perhaps grab a book from the library with him. He very nearly asked her for a bite to eat, but chickened out at the last minute (and thus: book at the library. Smooth.) So, now armed with a few technological books and some comfortable chatter, they're exiting, and he's gathering up his courage again.

"So…I was thinking," he starts, slowly, eyes focused elsewhere than her. "I was thinking…maybe, y'know. What I mean to say, is… Well, there's some time, where…er, that is—" /Just spit it out/.

Rusty-Gears chuckles and smiles over at Blackbird warmly. She had rolled with all of this pretty well; perhaps she found his awkwardness endearing, or perhaps she simply did not notice how awkward he was. She liked the library! Nothing wrong with a book run. Might be a bit late at night for it, but hey! When you need a book, you need a book.

She giggled good-naturedly at his stammering, tilting an ear towards him. "Yes?" she prodded gently when he paused for a breath.

Awww! Like a scene from a shy romance story, the timeless tale of one shy colt's chance to be brave, buck up, and spit out an all important question!

Then we go from romance, to romantic comedy.

Who would have guessed that at that exact moment, the trio of troublemakers would happen to arrive! Somewhere along the way the two goonponies decided to get into a tussle, involving a great deal of shoving, shouting, trampling of innocent plants…and now a drunken collision! For sure, the fates can't let Blackbird do something so gutsy without a twist, the Syndicolt Organization has arrived to save the day!

A great crash of sound, and the library steps whereupon the two potential loveponies were about to meet eye to eye, were suddenly invaded by the two big brown brutes, one chasing after the other, whom totally isn't looking where he's going since he's too busy sticking his tongue out at his pursuer. With poor Blackbird right in their charging path! Maddie, gleefully chasing after the pair, though at a safer distance so as to judge the action, is the only real warning given prior to impact zero, shouting an ever helpful:

"Get out of the bloody way ya bleedin' bookworms!" Followed by a string of not-so-tame drunken slurring that may or may not be insulting everypony who ever dared walk this forsaken land. Heavens what a mouth!

"Uh— uh, well," Blackbird stammers, getting more nervous as she prompts him for an answer. But, suddenly, there's a pony charging at him and his eyes widen as he snaps his head up, and really there's not enough time to react. "Oof!" The goon crashes into the professor, and he goes tumbling rump over teakettle, landing on his head in the bushes. Eyes spinning, he flops over, and tries to get his bearings. "Someone get th' license plate number of that boat?" he slurs.

Rusty-Gears gives a startled yelp, knocked aside herself as the two ponies barrel through. She clambers awkwardly back to her hooves as best she could on the stairs, darting over to Blackbird worriedly. "Are you alright?! Are you hurt?" To the rowdy ponies, she directed a shout of, "Why don't you watch where you're going!" before turning back to try and help Blackbird up.

Neither of the goon-ponies are any worse for wear after their well-timed run-in with the hopeless romantic. The pair of burly ponies tackle at each other for a good minute, with Maddie cheering them on from the steps, before all three realize they've been shouted at! Three pairs of eyes peer up at Rusty, three heads tilted like they were seeing her for the first time, ever. Which is accurate enough, right?

Then all three explode into raucus laughter! The two goons have to lean on each other for support, their drunken minds taking that as the best joke, ever. Watch where they're going! As if! Naturally Maddie recovers from the fits first, unable to hide mirthful tones and giggled snorts between words, slowly staggering towards the pair, totally intending to get all up in Rusty's personal space. "Why don't /you/ watch where /we're/ going? What, weren't we loud enough for ya? Do we gotta carry foghorns around so people know to stay outta our way? Go jump off a pier, babe. Or better yet, let us push ya off!"

Blackbird gets up to his hooves and shakes himself off, practically sounding the cowbell with the way his head shakes. "I'm fine. Just a little spill." But, his ears perk at that particular verbal retort from the pair, and suddenly, his hackles seem to be raised. He takes a deep breath, and stalks forward toward the group, not a worry in the world, apparently. Not a worry, that is, except for what they've done to tick him off. "HEY," he snaps. "Let's see a little decency around here, you arrogant oat-brains! I'm not about to let you talk to anypony like that, least of all her!" Puff! >:(

From afar, Mad-Mare wonders how you feel 'bout getting Blackbird involved in a duel. '-'
You paged Mad-Mare with 'Sure! :D He'll probably do terribly and that will be fine :D'.
Rusty-Gears blinks and frowns at the words, ears flattening as she opened her mouth to retort, though she was distracted by Blackbird getting up. She gave him a quick once-over for any injuries, looking a bit relieved to see him relatively intact. And apparently having a sudden burst of bravery! She blushed faintly and stepped up beside him, shooting a still-rather-irritated glare at the rowdy stallions and their ringleader.

Aww, now he's standing up for her! And she's standing up for him! And Maddie, well… She's still giggling at them both, the fact that there's huffy and snappy words coming their way bringing up a childish "Ooooooooooh" from the rougher stallions. They've both managed to find their feet, coming up to stand at either side of the main mare, all three grinning like loons.

"You're not about to do what now, little ponies?" Maddie breathes, the air in front of the trio so thick with booze scent that they could probably get others contact-drunk. "What'cha gonna do to stop me, huh?" She puts on a mock-worried face, a hoof to her mouth, "Ohno! Boys, he's got a book! Ahh, run for the boats!" This makes the two goons nearly tip over again, new fits of laughter shaking the three.

Maddie never takes her eyes off Blackbird though, her grin only getting wider, "Or maybe you got a little oomph to back up attitude? Hmmmmm?"

Blackbird's face is burning, but he steels his expression, taking a threatening step forward. You don't move to a pirate town without a little oomph in your background, after all! "You want oomph? I've got oomph. I'll buck you into next week, you flea-bitten excuse for a pirate! Now either entertain me with a fight, or get out of our way so we can continue our night without /interference/." GLARE. So much glare. Unlike Rusty, his saddlebags are component-free. Just books. Maybe he could bean one of them with an EE textbook.

Rusty-Gears blinks and frowns, bracing herself a bit as well. She was never one to back down from a scrap, and this was… actually somewhat impressive, coming from the same colt who'd just been stammering and blushing. But she had a feeling these ponies weren't the sort to back down either. Which led to her doing quick mental inventory of what she had in her saddlebags right now and what could potentially come in handy.

"Ohoho! So feisty!" Maddie's practically bouncing on her hooves, delighted and entertained with all the reaction's she's getting! This completely makes up for, y'know, being humiliated in front of the mayor. And a bunch of schoolfoals. Hmph. Foals. It should be noted though, both of the goonponies have somehow managed to control their own laughter, both of them giving Blackbird a mirror image of raised eyebrows.

"I see why you like him~ He's pretty cute for a bookworm." Maddie continues, grinning her half-crazed look at Rusty now, /completely/ ignoring Blackbird's threatening gestures in favor of pretending to be all chummy with the filly instead! "Well I /love/ feisty, and I love this quaint little place. I don't think we're ever gonna get bored here."

Eyes back on Blackbird, the Mad Mare dips her head, batting her booze-addled visage, "How 'bout you come back with us, and we'll fight it out on my ship, hmm?" Her eyes flick back to Rusty, "You don't mind, do you? I promise I'll give him back in one piece~"

Blackbird blinks, and suddenly it slides into place. The strangers, the attitude. The giant metal ships. Her words about never getting bored. "Oh! You're the ponies blockading the harbor. No wonder you're such arrogant jerks." Still, his anger isn't abated, and he plants his hooves. "Sure, how about, we fight, and if I win, you and yours get the heck out of Dodge, and Rusty gets an apology. Deal?"

Rusty-Gears blinks and frowns, laying her ears back and peering suspiciously over at the mare. "To your ship?" No, no, she didn't like the sound of that. She shot Blackbird a sideways glance, frown deepening a bit. "Are you sure about that?" she asked, keeping her voice low. "There's three of 'em out here and two of us. There there'd be one of you and probably lots of them, and I don't want to blow a hole in a ship you're standing on."

Maddie's ears perk! There was a bargain in there! This night just keeps getting better! She looks, from filly to colt and back, contemplating as well as someone with as much alcohol as blood will allow can.

"This sounds like a real fun time, lil' stud." she finally says, leaning against one of her goonponies. "Okay~ How 'bout tomorrow? You come out to my ship, bring yer little filly friend here with you, as my guests. You'n I get a little tussle going, and if you win I'll leave. Peacefully, even. No more shooting ships, no more plotting to blow the town up or kidnap ponies or burn the forest."

She yawns, like all this thinking during boozetime was catching up to her right quick, the off-white mare's grin focused on Rusty, though her words are obviously meant for Blackbird. "But what do /I/ get if I win? You better have something you can put up that's equally valuable, little stud."

Blackbird blinks right back, as Rusty puts in a /logical/ opinion. "…Well, when you put it that way…" he murmurs back. His ears flick, though he can't deny that the fact that she'd plan to blow a hole in the ship makes his heart happily skip a beat. Aw, inventor-driven wanton destruction? For meeee? You shouldn't have! But he ponders, there. No time for distractions! Hmmm. "If /you/ win… I have treasure you can have. And it's /dang/ good too. Family heirloom-type stuff." He offers a hoof. "Deal?"

(OOC) Blackbird's treasure is ~knowledge~
(OOC) Blackbird: Because he's a jerk like that. XD
(OOC) Rusty-Gears: XD clever clever. Blackbird knows his movie tropes.
(OOC) Mad-Mare: Phrased mysteriously, and totally harmless if he gets his plot kicked. Perfect!

Logical? Rusty? That's not an over-common occurance! But probably necessary in this occasion. She didn't trust this mare, she got the distinct feeling something was being planned here and she didn't like it. BUT, she had an invite along, at least. That made any plans of hole-blowing easier to fathom. And she could make sure they didn't pull anything nasty that wound up hurting Blackbird badly. She kept frowning, but gave a slow nod.

Maddie shifts on her hooves, the goon she's leaned against propping her up so she doesn't fall asleep mid-negotiations. The offer is both disappointing and strangely alluring to the Mad Mare, her greed having a wrestling match with her dramatic whims. "Hearloom, you say? Priceless, even?" She mulls, eyeing Blackbird's hoof. "…That's not what you're supposed to offer." She sounds almost heartbroken! Those booze-laden, half-crazed eyes flit up to catch Blackbird's own irate, devious, somehow (in her mind) fiery gaze. "You're /supposed/ to offer yourself. Y'know? Heroic sacrifice? Save the bloody day? Not some lame 'I got my rear kicked' trophy I can sell at a pawn shop! How're you supposed to do some silly, sappy, stupid last-minute-save-the-town-for-your-sweetheart-win if your life isn't on the line?"

Now she's frowning. Apparently her style of flirting hasn't had the desired results! Maybe she wasn't intimidating enough. She'll have to work on that. "Fine. Fine… Whatever. Now you've ruined the mood, and I'm gonna fight you to take my aggressions out." She clops her hoof to his, eyes rolled, looking like her PERFECT EVENING just got totally and completely blown.

Just what was she trying to do, anyway?

Blackbird lifts a brow. "Offer myself?" he asks with a blink. "I don't even know why you'd /want/ me. I'm just a schoolteacher. And as such, I'm not that dumb. /Anyway/, I'll do a last minute save regardless. The harbor's on the line." He paused, shaking her hoof, and shrugged. "Well, sort of on the line, anyway. You're doing a pretty poor job of it." He flashes a grin, and then hops back to stand beside Rusty. Out of the side of his mouth, he whispers, "How fast can you flee a sinking ship?"

Rusty-Gears grins faintly despite herself. "You know, I've never tried? But I suspect it might be entertaining to find out," she whispered back. "For what it's worth at least I'm a fair swimmer!"

Frown. Pout. Murderous glare, even! It's all Maddie can do to keep herself from going back on her word and jumping the pair right now! That'll teach them to ruin her drama! Raging and drunk now, Maddie turns her head to her compatriots, jerking it towards the harbor, prompting them to turn around and begin walking away. Much more sober than they were mere minutes ago.

"Tomorrow. My ship. Put up a white flag and we won't bomb ya~" A fake smile and a nod of her head, the seething mare spins about to catch up with her two goons. Right back to swear-mode, too, as she cusses the world out for having not a lick of real romance left in it!

"It's a date," Blackbird calls after her with a smirk. But with that, he lets out the breath he didn't know he was holding, and rubs his face, swaying a little. Eeeesh. "Well, uh. Sorry about that. Clearly it's not a /night/ without my patented Rampant Stupidity. Er, sorry to have roped you into that." Because clearly she did not rope herself. Dumb buck.

Rusty-Gears chuckles and nuzzles him lightly. "S'okay. Hey… now we have an excuse to see each other tomorrow!" she blushes faintly and shrugs. "And maaaaybe, y'know, do a little planning or somesuch, 'cause I get the feeling 'up to something' is an accurate description of that mare."

Blackbird's face goes bright red at that. Especially the nuzzling. Oh mah gaw. "Yeah," he replies, voice cracking, before he clears his throat and says a bit deeper, ahem hem, "Yeah. Planning! Would be good." He pauses, jaw working, before he follows that up with, "Want to plan over dinner?" He's playing it cool. And badly.

Rusty-Gears smiles over at him, looking rather happy at the offer. "Sure. That sounds nice. I'd be glad to."

Oop! See that cloud? Cloud nine? Despite being an earth pony, he's fluttering somewhere over it. Yep! Blackbird's face splits into an enormous grin, and he very nearly hops. (Okay, not very nearly. He does. It's a little hop.) "Really? I mean— Cool." Right, yes. Smooth. "Yeah, um. I'll pick you up at five, or so?" Okay, knees. Don't give out before you have a chance to walk away and not pass out. There's a good bunch of joints.

Rusty-Gears nods cheerily. "Sure! Five is perfect." If she noticed the hop she didn't comment. Which of course had nothing to do with trying to supress her own urge to bounce all the way back to her workshop like an overexcited filly. Nope, none at all. That would just be silly, wouldn't it. "I'll see you then!"

"Okay! Um — thanks, by the way, for, uh coming with me to the library, and…I'll see you tomorrow! With planning!" And with that, he tries not to run in a circle, and instead goes scampering off back to his own place like a schoolcolt. Because eeeeee~ (And only later does it occur to him that maybe he should have accompanied her home like a gentleman. … Oh well. Time enough for that tomorrow.)