|Coming to Grips with the Future|
"And I can distill that from this... and find that in the cleaning isle at S-Mart..." Sunset Shimmer can be heard murmuring to herself as she walks into the UR, most of her attention on the notes on her smartphone. Though she must be paying some regard to her surroundings as she steps around tables and other patrons without actually running into anyone. "... A lot of these have human world equivalents, I wonder if the city has a greenhouse somewhere..."
Rayne blinks as the familiar voice walks by her, and looks up from her dish. "Sunset?" she asks. "Uhhh, I've not noticed a greenhouse, myself, but I'm sure there's one somewhere in Neo-Edo. W-What are you working on?" She doesn't seem quite the confident person that Sunset may have gotten used to seeing in the past month, but she at least seems as friendly as usual.
Sunset stops and turns her head head as she hears her name from a familiar voice. "Oh, hello Rayne! I didn't notice you when I walked in." The girl sidesteps a waitress passing through and turns around to walk back to the table. "Oh, just some possible research. Some small experiments to see if Equestrian alchemy can interact with Twisted's reality. Fortunately I can use what I learned of chemistry at Canterlot High to find equivalent ways of getting less shall we say unorthodox reagents."
Rayne smiles to Sunset, grateful for the distraction from her own thoughts. "Alchemy, huh? Well, so far I've seen everything work, so it probably will?" She then frowns. "Or maybe it will just for you... Sometimes it seems the magics of one universe can stick primarily to the people and objects that might come from it, but not work outside of those people and things..." She then looks up again, holding her right index finger up as she has another point to make. "That said, your 'unorthodox reagents' may well be found quite easily if you find the right shop. You never know what you're going to find out there."
Sunset nods her head a bit. "That's part of the reason for trying. Won't know for sure without a little experimenting to confirm it." Flicks the fingers of one hand through her hair to tuck some stray bangs behind her ear where it belongs. "I haven't even nearly explored the entire city yet, especially with the new 'addition' as it were. Mind if I have a seat?"
Rayne motions to another seat at her table. "Please, go ahead. I have to confess I've not spent enough time over the bridge, myself, though I did have a rather successful trip to the mall." She flashes a grin at that. "Successful in that I spent most of my liquid assets in one go there. Somehow, I'd forgotten how expensive good looking clothing can be, especially the shoes."
Sunset hehs softly as she pulls the chair out and sits down. "That was one advantage of having a friend who was into fashion -and- a seamstress. Two really, though Fluttershy didn't really design her own like Rarity did."
Rayne nods. "I at least have the advantage that I can repair my clothes to looking like new with a spell, meaning I can wear my nicer clothes on a more daily basis without worrying about ruining them. But we're here now, in... Twisted." She frowns, for some reason. "I don't have access to the money I'd built up over the centuries, but I'd rather loose that than close friends." She winces ever so slightly after saying that.
Sunset frowns a little herself, reaching over to give Rayne a sympathetic pat on the shoulder. "I think most people that have wound up here would agree. We've all got people we were close to, and while it's good to take the opportunity to make new friends we can't forget they ones we've had to leave behind, either."
Rayne flinches at the pat on the shoulder, but at least she doesn't jump out of her seat this time. "Sorry, sorry, still working on that. Yeah, Yeah... Gotta... make our new life here." This puts an odd look of trepidation on her face, but she shakes her head to clear that away. She looks back up to Sunset with another smile. "This is home now, after all, right? So we've all gotta make the most of it."
The flinch is still enough to get Sunset to wince and quickly pull her hand back. "I'm sorry Rayne, I forgot," she apologizes swiftly as she settles back in her seat. "But, yeah, can't spend all one's time looking back, there's plenty to look forward to still."
Rayne sighs and leans forward, her elbows on the table and resting her forehead in her hands. "Yeah, so much to look forward to. I'm not sure I've ever been this stressed out, frankly." She leans back with another sigh. "Sorry, sorry. I'm just finding myself suddenly thinking more about the future than I have in a really long time." She offers Sunset another grin. "I'm really more of a let what comes be kind of person, you know? Thinking about the future ain't my specialty."
Sunset chuckles a little. "Sometimes you're more alike to Rainbow Dash than just the hair colors." She noticed the more solemn than usual manner but didn't want to step out of place by bringing it up herself. "Well, if you ever need someone to talk to, I'm sure you can find me or any one of your friends here to listen." She's not feeling particularly hungry so she does just wave over a waitress to order herself a smoothie.
Rayne says, "Yeah, yeah.... I'm just not quite ready to talk to myself yet about this particular complication. So.... How've you been then? Have you found... a place yet?" From the way she said that, it doesn't sound like she's talking about a place to live. "I don't think I've heard what you're doing for a living yet."
Sunset starts to reply but then realizes Rayne was asking that in a more figurative sense. "Right now I've just been doing odd jobs and errands around town while I do these little research projects. But there's a point to it." Though she has to pause to take her smoothie when it's brought out, and takes a sip of it before continuing. "Since I'm rather familiar with the process of adjusting to a new world from experience, Serenity suggested I try setting up some sort of consulting service. You know, helping the newcomers fit in." She taps a fingertip on the table, as if indicating 'here' in a general sense. "But to do that, I need to be more familiar with Twisted as well, and I can't do that just sitting down at one job. Not yet, at least."
Rayne nods as Sunset explains her plans. "That... makes a lot of sense. I've been pondering starting something like that in TASK, and I was going to put Ren on it. I was worried about jurisdictions and whatnot, but that might not be an issue soon." She blinks as she says this, almost surprised at herself. "Huh." She shakes her head again, "I might be able to pull something to make your plan a bit more official." She really does sound surprised at what she's saying.
Sunset sips at her smoothie a bit more, then pauses to raise an eyebrow at Rayne. Another slrp follows and then she stops to swirl it a bit with the straw to keep the drink from settling. "Oh, what's on your mind now?"
Rayne says, "Ngrrr..." She rubs her head in a bit of frustration, but she brought it up, she needs to explain it. "Okay, so... From what I understand, and I'll point out that I'm no real expert... Twisted used to be ruled by a council, right? A bunch of people making the decisions, running the city, all that fun stuff... Then something happened and now there's just one guy doing it, seeming to think it's a great idea to run a whole city just by himself... He's why the 'town hall' is just an arena. So, uhhh... Look, I only know the basics, so I'm sure I'm glossing over almost everything, but still... A lot of people aren't happy with the current guy, so they're going to set a new council into place." She frowns a bit harder at this, looking ahead without her eyes focused on anything in particular. "...And for some reason they thought I should be on it."
"Is that's what has you a bit on the edge?" Sunset's just putting two and two together so she's probably not entirely right. But it would explain how Rayne's been not quite herself right now. "Having all the power in one person can sometimes cause problems in a long run. There's no one to keep a balance, just one person is not going to be able to do the right thing every time, all the time. Things just don't work that way."
Rayne nods to Sunset enthusiastically. "Oh, absolutely! There's no way one person can see every side! That's why these potential members were picked as they were, uhh..." She frowns, trying to recall what everyone represented. "Kotal to represent law and order... Someone to represent those that have always been around or something, Luna to represent those that... were redeemed? Or seeking redemption? Someone else to represent the downtrodden or something like that, and then there's me, who is to represent the people that are just trying to make a new life here. With the different sides, we can see it all... At least I think that's the idea?" She definitely looks stressed out by the prospect.
Sunset nods her head. "That is the general concept behind a council government, yeah. Multiple points of view to see a matter from. And a wider base to draw ideas from as well. Sometimes it can take longer to get things done with multiple inputs, but in the end I think you get better results, too. Because there's no one person trying to decide their one way is the only right way. Most problems do have multiple possible answers."
Silencia walks into the restaurant, looking a bit annoyed. She wanted to ask a thousand questions about the events of the other day, but the god was gone before she could speak to him. Her look of annoyance quickly fades away when she sees Rayne and an unfamiliar girl sitting at a table. She makes her way over to the two and smiles. "Hello!" Sunset gets a friendly smile. "I don't think we've met. I'm Silencia, may I ask for your name?" She does notice the stressed look Rayne is showing and she sighs. Silencia can guess why her colorful friend is stressed. "Everything okay, Rayne?"
Rayne says, "Right, right... I'm not going to argue that a council isn't a good idea. I'm just.... incredibly nervous about being a part of it." She actually pales slightly as she says it, lost in thought for another moment. In fact, as Silencia greets her, it actually takes her a few seconds to respond. "Eeeeh? Oh... Yeah, I guess. Hey, promotion incoming, right? Ha ha..." Yeah, that was far from a genuine laugh."
Sunset glances over when a new person greets Rayne with familiarity, then asks her name. "My name is Sunset Shimmer." Sips from her smoothie for a moment, then offers Rayne a reassuring smile. "Just remember you won't have to do it by yourself, you'll have your friends to support you. But I'm sure you'll do just fine."
Silencia has a warm smile as she sits down next to Rayne, being careful not to sit too close. The girl doesn't need more anxiety. "Sweety, you don't seem fine... the only time I saw you this pale is when I healed you and you almost got a panic attack from the attention." The priestess seems a bit off today, her tone just a tad more serious than normal. Her tone is still full of warmth and reassurance though, the girl very much attuned to comforting people. Sunset's words get an approving smile. "She is right, Rayne, you are not alone. Maybe it'll help if you try to vocalise just what makes you so nervous about being a part of the council?"
Rayne smiles weakly to Sunset. "Thanks... and yeah. It'll be really weird actually being Kotal's equal in a way, though..." She then frowns. "Will this take me out of TASK? Gods, I just have no clue what this is going to be like." She blinks at Silencia (and is perfectly fine with how close she is), and looks down while nodding as Silencia makes her suggestion. "It's..." She motions with her hands, as if literally grasping for the words. "I'm not a leader by nature. I follow along with the flow, I don't seek out to change things. I...don't deal well with arguments... I panic really easily, I don't like a lot of attention-" now the words are almost coming out too fast, and she's having to stop herself to remember to breathe. "I don't have the confidence a leader needs. I don't know how effective I'll be, will I just cave in too easily?" This doesn't seem to be calming her down, instead it seems to be almost setting her into a panic anew, to the point that she's almost hyperventilating. She plants her elbows on the table, setting her hands as a firm place to plant her face. "At this rate the stress of all this is going to turn me into a dragon."
Sunset sips on her smoothie for a moment while she listens. Then replies, "I don't know. That might be the best reason for you to be there. They already have people like Khan that are natural leaders. But they need people with," Sunset taps a fist to her chest, "-heart-."
Silencia's eyes never leave Rayne's face while the warrior rants about her fears. She has to hold herself back from pulling Rayne into a hug. She needs Rayne to calm down and not get another panic attack. "A room filled with only leaders that are dominating by nature will breed discord and war." Silencia seems the exact opposite of Rayne right now, very calm and collected. Without her noticing, Silencia's hand is on Rayne's back, patting comfortingly. "Remember to keep breathing..." She quickly retracts her hand when she notices and peeks at Rayne's reaction. "You are an intelligent woman and your ideas are sound. You also have an ally by your side; Kotal. If you don't want the attention, just tell him to speak on your behalf until you are confident enough to speak and hold the attention." A soft chuckle escapes her when she mentions Kotal. "And don't worry, I think Kotal will not let you cave, I have a feeling he'll keep feeling responsible for you..."
There's definitely a lot of tensing up of her muscles and a sharp intake of breath as the back-pat happens, but there's no large reaction. She's still in her seat, at least. "Thanks... thanks. Hopefully that won't mean that people just think I'm in Kotal's camp for everything." She narrows her eyes a bit. "Gods know I disagree with him plenty at TASK... But there I'll actually get to voice it more." She sighs, calming down a bit now. "It's just... The future is always more stressful than the present. That's why I try not to think about it. Maybe... maybe when it's here, when I'm there, I'll just... flow into it like I do everything else. I was nervous enough about being Kotal's Second in TASK. I said I only agreed to do it until someone better was found... but I took to the role, didn't I? Maybe it'll be the same here."
Silencia smiles as she listens to Rayne. She seems a bit calmer and that made Silencia happy. "The future is uncertain and frightening indeed... if flowing into it helps you deal with the situation calmly then I advise you to do so. I have no doubts about your capabilities though, Rayne. Like I said, you have a keen intellect and your insecurities actually make you careful and deliberate in your actions. Your weakness is also what will make you a valuable part of the council." Silencia grins playfully, finally taking a step out of her seriousness. "Worst case scenario; If anything happens, I'll fill the room up with butterflies and help you escape the attention!"
Sunset has mostly just been listening at this point while drinking her smoothie, but can't help but snicker a bit at the imagery that Silencia makes.
Rayne can't help but laugh at the threat of filling the room with butterflies, the joke apparently just what she needed at the time. "Thanks... Thanks. I think... I think I'll be fine, now... At least for a while." She offers Silencia a weak smile, but it's not the weakest she's ever had, at least. "I guess... I need to remember that they saw something in me. That they know what they're doing. And not that he just picked me out at random on the spot there." There's a bit of a frown, a bit of doubt again, as she recalls 'She'll do.' from last night.
Serenity ripples into the restaurant with a more solemn expression than a run to the dance club might elicit. Sliding past an exiting patron, Ren pauses in a 'standing' posture by the door until spotting Rayne and company. Ren waves a 'wing' briefly from the water before slipping over to the table. "I hope that another person here would not be overwhelming?" Ren ventures.
Silencia feels relieved she could make Rayne laugh. She herself allows herself to let out a giggle as well, summoning a tiny purple butterfly in the palm of her hand and presenting it to Rayne. "Always at your service!" Rayne's smile might be weak, but Silencia accepts it. Such insecurities cannot be taken care of in a single sitting. This would need time and patience and Silencia has plenty of both. "Of course they know what they're doing! Do you seriously think that you would be put in a position like this if they thought you weren't up to it?" She gives Rayne a soft smack to the back of the head, not enough to hurt, but enough to make the warrior come back to her senses. She smiles confidently at the warrior, a playful twinkle in her eye. "I will help you with your fears, whether you like it or not." She cracks her knuckles as if she's preparing for a fight. "Prepare yourself..." Serenity's arrival turns Silencia's expression back to a cheerful one. "As if you'd ever be overwhelming! Welcome Serenity!"
Sunset waves to Serenity. "By no means Ren! More the merrier as they say." Though Rayne and Silencia are doing most of the conversation right now.
Rayne, of course, tenses up again, hunching her shoulders as Silencia hits her in the back of the head. "I, yye, uh, go ahead, Ren." She offers the mullusc a nervous smile, but then looks back to Silencia with a bit more of a worried look to her face. "...What are you planning, Sil?"
Serenity nods to Sunset, then slides a chair out of the way to take its place, 'kneeling' at a sitting height. Ren looks from Rayne to Silencia with a faintly amused expression. "What are you doing to Rayne that's more frightening than near-deities who have a habit of appearing in fearsome weather phenomena?"
Silencia smiles innocently at both Rayne and Serenity. "Nothing yet..." She peeks at Rayne and grins. "I need you to think about what exactly you want to change. Your anxiety when touched?" Silencia pets Rayne's shoulder lightly to emphasize her words. "Your self-image, your insecurities? Which ones exactly?" She places her elbows on the table and rests her chin on her folded hands. "I need you to decide that. You have the control over what I do." A slight smirk dances on her lips as she has eye contact with Rayne. "Lets see how good you are with making decisions." Sometimes, when she's teasing people, Silencia shows expressions that could be pulled off by manipulative villains, this time is one of those times. She is a priestess with a mission!
Sunset arcs a brow a bit at Silencia. But then it turns into a bit of a smirk as she sees where this is going. "She's right, you know. You can have all the help in the world, all the inspiration, but change only comes fully when you're willing to make those first steps for yourself. And I know from experience." This time she remembers and resists from reaching over to give Rayne a comforting pat again. "You just need to have faith in what you can do, not worry about what you might not be able to."
Rayne says, "I...." she frowns, flinching at the touch but not much more this time. She ponders Silencia's demand for what Rayne wants to change about herself; clearly all, but what the most? Self image and insecurities? That might be what she needs the most if she's to be an effective member of the council, but she's beginning to think that may, maybe she can help that herself. Oddly enough, in her mind what she needs the most help with is her anxiety with personal contact... there's no way she can do that without the help of others. "Uhhh... the personal space thing?"
Serenity regards Silencia uncertainly during her plotting. Ren remains quiet but glances to the expressions of Rayne and Sunset as she speaks. "Admittedly, the challenges that I've faced have generally been slowly-developing ones," Ren offers after Rayne answers. "But I would put in a word about building confidence from the outside in. I gave a quite a few presentations thinking that I was only pretending to understand as much as the listeners."
Silencia smiles softly and nods. "I understand and I'll help you with that. Just take your time to think about it. Alone. Then come back to me and tell me what you want, because you need to be absolutely certain. I will not stop once I start."