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Changing Lanes 35: The Night Life

By AutoPony
Created: 18th December 2020 10:52:01 AM

  1. >As the afternoon begins to transition into evening, you lounge in Luna's room, head buried in a book.
  2. >The chair you are in suddenly tips back, and you tilt your head back as well.
  3. >A pair of bright turquoise halos greets you.
  4. >"Hi, Anon."
  5. "Hi Moonbutt."
  6. >Luna blushes, giggling as she slowly allows your chair to sit level again.
  7. >"Why are you so obsessed with calling me that lately?"
  8. >You spin around in your chair to face her.
  9. "I'm not sure. It might be because you got a moon on your butt."
  10. >She blushes more, turning and wiggling her rump at you teasingly.
  11. >"You mean this one?"
  12. >Nnngh.
  13. "Yeah, that one."
  14. >At the same moment, Celestia walks by the open door.
  15. >Her eyes suddenly widen, before she hurries off to the other side.
  16. >"At least close the door!"
  17. >Luna laughs, stopping and turning around.
  18. >"Oh come on sis, we were not doing anything!"
  19. >She gets no response from Celestia, who has apparently high-tailed it.
  20. >The blue mare takes a seat on a cushion next to you, leaning over your armrest for a kiss.
  21. >You waste no time in obliging her, her silky soft lips too tempting to pass up.
  22. >After a moment, she pulls back, smiling.
  23. >"So, what did you do today?"
  24. >You lean back in your chair.
  25. "Not much, really. I finished buttoning up the Superbird today, that took a little while hooking up the wires and vacuum lines. Other than that, I raided the library, did some reading. How 'bout you, any noteworthy things happen serving as Princess of Equestria?"
  26. >She shakes her head, continuing to smile.
  27. >"No, it was very quiet in fact. Other than some paperwork and a few ponies requesting an audience, there was not much happening around the land, it would seem."
  28. "I was wondering why you were so full of energy. You have tomorrow off, don't you?"
  29. >Her face lights up.
  30. >"Yes, yes I do. The night is ours, perhaps we should do something."
  31. >You scratch your head.
  32. "Like what?"
  33. >Her face twists.
  34. >"Well, I don't know. Perhaps we should go for a cruise through Canterlot?"
  35. >You brush her mane, grinning.
  36. "I think that's a great idea, Luna."
  37.  
  38. >the Superbird seems happiest running at 45 mph, so you oblige her until reaching Canterlot's busy streets.
  39. >The engine runs at a smooth 1000 rpm, pulling without effort, the deep exhaust note at a leisurely rumble.
  40. >It is just beginning to change into spring in Equestria, with the weather around Canterlot a bit warmer than normal, as usual.
  41. >Both the driver's and passenger's windows are down to take in the lovely night air.
  42. "I take it your sis has never been a fan of winter."
  43. >Luna giggles, her mane thrown back behind her by the wind.
  44. >"No, she is not fond of the cold. Ever since I can remember, she's always made it warmer than usual wherever she lives. Winter tends to not happen around her."
  45. "The perks of being in charge of the sun, I suppose. You take any liberties in the night sky?"
  46. >Luna puts a hoof to her chin, thinking.
  47. >"Other than creating constellations, not really. I take that back, Nightmare Night, I always ensure there is a full moon."
  48. "Just to add to the atmosphere of the night, huh?"
  49. >She nods.
  50. >Up ahead, the warm glow of the lights of downtown Canterlot lighten the rapidly darkening evening sky.
  51. "Anything new and exciting in Canterlot we should check out? Or just a cruise through the city?"
  52. >"Well, there is an upscale nightclub that just opened up a week or two ago, we could go to that?"
  53. >You turn to her, confused.
  54. "I never took you for a pony that enjoys the nightlife."
  55. >She returns your confused look.
  56. "What I meant was... nevermind."
  57. >You begin slowing down, reaching the tighter streets of the city.
  58. >As you rumble through, ponies on either side of the street stop and stare, both in curiosity and shock.
  59. >Right, this is the first time you've actually taken the old girl through the city.
  60. "So, where is this place, Luna?"
  61. >"It should be around here somewhere..."
  62. >As you cruise slowly down the street, a line of carriages alongside the street you are on begins to appear..
  63. "What are the chances that's for the club?"
  64. >Luna's eyes widen.
  65. >"Wow. I would say it likely is."
  66. >After a block following the line, a brightly lit building comes into view where the line ends, titled 'The Mane Attraction.'
  67. "So, where to now?"
  68. >Luna giggles.
  69. >"Anonymous, have you forgotten who you are with this evening?"
  70. >It takes longer than it should to figure out what she's saying.
  71. "Alright then. Perks of being with the night princess. But where am I going to park this? It looks like they have a valet service."
  72. >"Alongside the street should be fine."
  73. "I don't want my baby being towed."
  74. >"Do not worry. I will assure you when they see me climb out, this car will be watched over by the guards outside."
  75. >You pull off to the side, killing the engine.
  76. "Good enough for me."
  77. >As the two of you climb out of the car, the bustling city seems deafeningly quiet.
  78. >Turning to head to the club, you understand why.
  79. >Everyone as far as the eye can see is bowed down.
  80. >Luna clear her throat as she continues to walk.
  81. >"Please, citizens, I am not here on official duty. I am merely here for an enjoyable night, the formalities are not necessary."
  82. >Slowly, the ponies rise, murmuring to each other quietly.
  83. >Clearly, they aren't used to this.
  84. >And judging by the stares you are garnering, they weren't expecting your presence, either.
  85. >It makes you a little nervous, causing you to slink behind Luna.
  86. >Walking up to one of the bouncers at the front of the line, they quickly move aside without a word, letting the both of you past.
  87. >Luna pulls you close to her with one of her wings as you enter the building.
  88. >"Are you okay, Anon?"
  89. "I'm fine. Just not used to being stared at like that. It was a little unnerving."
  90. >"Well, I believe this is among the first times you and I have been seen out in public together, aside from the Grand Galloping Gala for a short while. But do not fret, the eyes will be off us from now on."
  91. >She looks around, seeing nopony in the direct vicinity, before closing her eyes and focusing.
  92. >But nothing happens.
  93. >No glow, magic, nothing.
  94. >She opens her eyes, turning to look in one of the glass panes that lines the foyer.
  95. "Uh, Luna, what did you do? I don't see anything different."
  96. >She points a hoof to her reflection.
  97. >Instead of a blue alicorn, the reflection is that of a tall, teal unicorn.
  98. >"The perks of being gifted in illusion magic."
  99. >You don't understand.
  100. "But why can I see you?"
  101. >The two of you resume walking into the club, where it opens into a dance floor and stage, where a live bland plays.
  102. >Both of you take a seat in an unoccupied booth.
  103. >"The same thing happens with my sister, I am unable to fool her with my magic. I believe it has something to do with the mental link we share, but it is just a theory."
  104. >A waiter walks by, greeting you and placing down menus.
  105. >Luna turns to you, smiling as she opens her menu.
  106. "Now then, why don't we enjoy ourselves in peace?"
  107.  
  108. >As the band currently on stage finishes, Luna rises to her hooves out of your arm.
  109. >"I will be back, I must use the facilities. Hopefully before the next song."
  110. "I doubt they'll be starting that quick."
  111. >While you have never been a fan of classical music, it has been an enjoyable night.
  112. >It's a change of pace for one, and just being with Luna, nestled together in a cozy booth has made you forget all of the troubles of the past few months.
  113. >Luna seems to be really adapting to the open mind philosophy.
  114. >Seeing a drink named after her on the menu, she felt she had to try it.
  115. >It is obvious she is a lightweight when it comes to alcohol, because after only one, Luna clearly has a bit of a buzz going.
  116. >She noticed it herself first, and has not ordered another.
  117. >As the blue mare departs the table, you cannot help but feel the eyes on you again.
  118. >One pony in particular has been eying you all night for whatever reason.
  119. >At first, with her tall and lithe build, you thought she was yet another alicorn.
  120. >While no wings disproved that thought, her bright white coat and pale pink mane stand out in the dim room.
  121. >Now, you see that same pony heading towards your table.
  122. >She stops at the edge of the tabletop, staring down at you coldly.
  123. "Uh, hi."
  124. >"Why are you here?"
  125. >You are thrown off a bit by the question.
  126. "What do you mean?"
  127. >She leans down towards you, you can smell the faintest trace of alcohol on her breath.
  128. >Well, there is a reason they call it liquid courage.
  129. >"I mean, why are you here in Canterlot, in Equestria itself?"
  130. "...Uh, I don't really know? It's not like I decided to fall my world and land here.
  131. >She doesn't seem to like your answer as she scowls.
  132. [Uh, Luna?]
  133. >[Is the next show starting already?]
  134. [You could say that.]
  135. >You fidget in your seat as the tall unicorn continue to glare at you.
  136. >"Lately, rumors have been swirling around Canterlot that the changelings have returned. How odd of a coincidence that around the same time, you suddenly pop up here in Canterlot, no?"
  137. >Her implied accusations burrow under your skin.
  138. "If you're going to imply something, you could at least have the courage to say it."
  139. >She throws her head back, laughing.
  140. >"I'm not implying anything, just giving you something to think about. Rumor is you also are intimately involved with one of the princesses of Equestria. I assume it is Luna, for her decision-making seems to be poor, at best."
  141. >The sheer idiocy she is preaching causes you to laugh.
  142. "Yeah, okay. why should I care about what you have to say?"
  143. >She slams her hoof on the table, startling some of the patrons at nearby tables.
  144. >"Watch your tone. I am a very important pony here in Canterlot. You would do well to tread lightly while you are in our capital."
  145. >You catch a glimpse of an ethereal, flowing blue mane behind the pony.
  146. >How long has she been there?
  147. >Seemingly finished with her visit with you, the unicorn turns, jumping back in surprise.
  148. >"Leaving so soon, Fleur-De-Lis?"
  149. >Luna's face is devoid of any emotion.
  150. >Well, at least you have a name to this rude guest.
  151. >Fleur-De-Lis looks up and down Luna's form, unable to see through her illusion.
  152. >"Pardon me, but do I know you?"
  153. >Luna's face turns smug.
  154. >"Oh, I believe you do. But it has been a while."
  155. >You do your best to keep a straight face.
  156. >Fleur-De-Lis seems to be taken off-guard a bit when Luna does not introduce herself properly, but forces a smile.
  157. >"w\Well, I just came over to speak with the guest you have brought with you this evening. He seems like quite the gentlecolt.."
  158. >"I assume that is why you waited until I was gone to accuse him of a rumor that may or may not even be true? Or that one of our very monarchs is questionable to rule, at best?"
  159. >The unicorn takes a step back, bumping into the wall next to your booth.
  160. >"Well, that is a little bit out of context, what I said was-"
  161. >Luna will have none of it, as she puts a hoof up to silence Fleur.
  162. >"I assume lying that you are an important pony here in Canterlot was also taken out of context, as well?"
  163. >Fleur-De-Lis's stomps forward again.
  164. >"I AM an important pony! Everypony in Canterlot knows me!"
  165. >Luna seems to be enjoying this for some reason.
  166. >"Being a distant relative to royalty doesn't make you important. And the only reason everypony knows you is because you are a model. All you are to these ponies is a pretty face."
  167. >Damn, Luna.
  168. >Luna turns to you.
  169. >"Come, Anon. I believe it is time we left."
  170. >You rise to your feet, heading to the entrance of the club beside Luna.
  171. >Suddenly, you feel yourself jerked back, whirled around to face Fleur-De-Lis.
  172. "Hey, what the hell are you doing?!"
  173. >"This unicorn that I do not even know may think you are special for whatever reason, as do the princesses. But I assure you, everypony else sees you as a burden on this world!"
  174. >You are pulled back by Luna, who clocks Fleur in the face with her right hoof.
  175. >The club goes silent, save for a few gasps from shocked onlookers.
  176. >"Silence your tongue, and get out of my sight before I do more to you than that."
  177. >With blood beginning to trickle from her nose, Fleur-De-Lis steps back with a wobbly gate, stunned.
  178. >"How... DARE YOU!"
  179. >A few ponies rush to her aid, while a couple stallions head for you and Luna, scowling.
  180. >"Time to go, Anon."
  181. >You feel yourself being lifted up by Luna and tossed on her back, as she gallops towards the exit.
  182. >She weaves her way through the crowd as best she can, nudging ponies out of the way.
  183. >All you can do is hold on for dear life, your arms wrapped around her neck.
  184. >The two of you burst out of the front doors to the startled cries of ponies outside.
  185. >Luna skids to a stop on the passenger's side of the Superbird, and you slide over the hood to your side.
  186. >Both of you climb in, and you hit the key, the engine roaring to life.
  187. >Matting the throttle and slinging the steering wheel, you do a smoky u-turn, flying past your pursuers, who look on in confusion.
  188.  
  189. >As downtown Canterlot grows smaller in the rearview mirror, Luna starts laughing.
  190. "What? I missed the joke."
  191. >She gets a hold of herself, leaning her head on your shoulder.
  192. >"I have wanted to do that to Fleur-De-Lis for a long while now."
  193. "Who the hell was that, anyways?"
  194. >"Fleur-De-Lis is a distant relative of Celestia and I. For that reason, she feels entitled, as if she herself is somehow part of the monarchy. In fact, she is a glamour model, which is the only reason she is a celebrity in Canterlot."
  195. >Luna pauses, then continues slowly in a more somber tone.
  196. >"When I returned to Equestria and broken free of my burdens, Celestia was considering whether or not it would be wise for me to rule alongside her again. While most ponies seemed to embrace the idea and welcome me back, Fleur-De-Lis made her opinion known that she did not trust me. And pushed it fervently."
  197. >You look down at Luna, confused.
  198. "Why would Celly listen to a glamour model's opinion?"
  199. >"At one time, she was also a royal advisor, which added to her inflated sense of importance."
  200. "So, you think we'll be in trouble? I mean, you were not recognized, but I certainly was."
  201. >Luna waves a hoof.
  202. >"Do not concern yourself, you did nothing wrong."
  203. "Alright. When the hell did you get back to the table though? Apparently I was too focused on her to see you approach."
  204. >"Well, I got back as quick as I could when you contacted me. So, I heard pretty much everything that was said."
  205. >You drive on for a few miles in silence, until you reach the entrance to the castle.
  206. >Smiling, you wrap you arm around Luna.
  207. "Not exactly my idea of a relaxing night, but I certainly can't say it was boring."
  208. >"Hm. It was certainly a memorable one. Now I remember why I do not partake in alcoholic drinks."
  209. >You look down at her, stunned.
  210. "You had one drink. Are you really that much of a lightweight?"
  211. >She looks up at you, smirking as you pull into the garage.
  212. >"To a certain extent, yes. But, I also need some sort of excuse in case somepony somehow figures out who you were with this evening."
  213.  
  214. >"Good morning, Anonymous."
  215. >Celestia greets you as you join her at the dining room table.
  216. "Hi Tia. How are you this morning?"
  217. >As she smiles, you sense there is more behind that expression.
  218. >"I am very well, thank you. I was just reading up on a report of an altercation that happened at the newest nightclub in Canterlot last night."
  219. >No sense in denying it.
  220. "News gets around that fast, huh?"
  221. >"Indeed it does."
  222. >An awkward silence follows, as Celestia continues to smile, sipping her tea.
  223. >Luna shuffles in to the room, making eye contact with her sister.
  224. >She rolls her eyes, as she apparently realizes her sister is informed.
  225. >"In my defense, Fleur-De-Lis was asking for a comeuppance."
  226. >"I didn't say anything, sister."
  227. >"You did with your eyes."
  228. >You do your best to keep a straight face as Luna pours some coffee for herself.
  229. >Celestia's eyes dart to you, as she smirks.
  230. >"So, I must ask, who is your newest special somepony you went out with last night?"
  231. >You look up at her.
  232. "Smartass."
  233.  
  234.  
  235.  
  236.  
  237. [Originally posted 2 August 2015]
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