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Aces High 17: Engine Trouble.

Mandroid Nov 7th, 2014 (edited) 319 Never
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  1. =Aces High 17=
  2.  
  3. >You open the door to your house on a quiet Saturday midday and stick your head out. You look once to the left and once to the right investigating, as well as scanning the nearby treelines for any camera flashes.
  4. “Looks clear…”
  5. >You pull the door the rest of the way open and bend down in your bathrobe to pick up the paper.
  6. >Fancy had intstructed you to keep low since the race, total media blackout, but that didn’t stop you from having to have dodged paparazzi trying to swarm your house like ants to a hill.
  7. >Today seemed, mercifully, quiet. Some noble somewhere must have called someone a zigger or something. However that didn’t mean you were off the hook just yet.
  8. >You reach to flip through the paper for news but there you are, getting prenched by Spitfire on page one, this time from a new angle with a big headline saying “RACEWAY ROMANCE”.
  9. “Aw jeeze…”
  10. >”What’s wrong, mister Anon?”
  11. >You look away from your paper and spy Thunderstrike peddling around the street on his scooter.
  12. “Something…incredibly stupid, kid.”
  13. >”Huh?” he asks, tilting his head in that way kids do.
  14. >You sigh, it’d probably be poor tact to tell this kid about the birds and the bees.
  15. “Nothing, Strike. Just remember that pictures are forever, okay?”
  16. >You turn around and let the boy have his weekend, shutting and locking the door.
  17. >Thunderstrike may be off the hook, but that didn’t mean that someone else wasn’t.
  18. >If it had been this long and the press –still- wasn’t letting off, you and Spitfire needed to chat.
  19. >It luckily wasn’t hard to find her these days, you just had to walk through your house and follow the music.
  20.  
  21. Music: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qqszqHKIqEk
  22. >You head downstairs from the door to your living room where Spitfire is sprawled out on a mat contorted into some mind boggling position.
  23. >”Anny! Thank Celestia, get me out of this!” she says with her hind hood next to her face.
  24. >You have no choice but to cock your eyebrow as you walk over and flick off the stereo.
  25. “Do I even want to know?”
  26. >”Yoga.”
  27. “You don’t do yoga.”
  28. >”I thought I’d pick it up?”
  29. “…Kaaaaay, why?”
  30. >”Make me more ~flexible~, lover.” She says, batter her eyelids.
  31. >You roll your eyes and kneel down to untangle her.
  32. “Please don’t talk like that, it fills me with dread.”
  33. >Spitfire flops onto the mat as she rights herself and stands. “Pshaw, not if you listen to the lame stream media! We’re hot!”
  34. “Yeah but they don’t need any MORE ammo, do they?”
  35. >Spitfire trots over to table and pours herself a glass of rum.
  36. “Isn’t it a bit early?”
  37. >”It’s happy hour somewhere.”
  38. “Yeah? Where?”
  39. >Spitfire is quiet an blinks a few times in consideration. “Stalliongrad.”
  40. “Stalliongrad?”
  41. >”City of ice, snow, bad smells and vodka? It’s ALWAYS happy hour there.” She says, gulping her drink.
  42. >You sit down on a chair.
  43. “FLAWLESS logic.”
  44. >”I’m a treasure to my kingdom.” She says, putting a disingenuous hoof over her heart and taking another swig.
  45. “Seriously, cut back on that, huh? For me.”
  46. >Spitfire looks at you confused. “Maaaaan, what is with you? You sound like my mom, and step-mom, and step-mom after her.”
  47. >You jerk a thumb towards the bay window and bushes beyond it.
  48. “I just don’t wanna give those vultures out there any more ammo, you know?”
  49. >Spitfire chuckles and takes a swig from the bottle. “They love me for it.”
  50. “Yeah, I worry about that too.”
  51. >”Eh?”
  52.  
  53. >You gesture to her.
  54. “You, this, all of you. You barely own yourself, it’s all for them.”
  55. >You point outside again.
  56. >”The heck do you mean?” she asks.
  57. “I mean- look. You give more than anyone else on the team and bust your ass to be captain, working your body and mind so we’re the best, right?”
  58. >”Naturally.”
  59. “And off the track you always end up in some rag getting photographed drinking in Appleoosa or posing for some photographer or leaving a club with the entire Trottingham water polo team.”
  60. >Spitfire grins and her eyes sorta glaze over, you wave your hand in front of them.
  61. “Spits?”
  62. >”Huh, sorry?” she says snapping back. “Sorry, I was still on the water polo team…”
  63. >You roll your eyes.
  64. “My point is that you’re giving your entire professional life to the team and your entire personal life to the press.”
  65. >”Yeah, and?”
  66. “And so when was the last time you did something for yourself?”
  67. >Spitfire doesn’t answer immediately.
  68. “When was the last time you did something just because you wanted to and not because it’d get you on the cover of some trashy newspaper or because it’d help the ‘Bolts?”
  69. >Spitfire makes her best cutie patootie face. “I’m here with you, aint I?”
  70. >You drop the paper from this morning on the floor in front of her.
  71. “Spits, you know I love ya to death, but forgive me if I don’t totally believe that stunt at the stadium was just you caught up in the moment.”
  72. >Spitfire sighs and hangs her head, going over and kicking at the paper. “Didn’t even get my good side.”
  73. “Not really a laughing matter, Spits…”
  74. >”Then what –is- it, Anny?” she asks, looking at you with her namesake in her eyes.
  75. >You sigh, this was an unpleasant road so you wanted to avoid as much of it as possible…
  76.  
  77. “Look, I just mean I’ve seen fliers give themselves this much to the sport and it…didn’t end well.”
  78. >”Like how?”
  79. “Like it became their life and then it…ended for some reason or another and they were lost. What happens if you get a game breaking injury, huh? What happens if you lose a wing to a razor wind?”
  80. >Spitfire recoils slightly. “That’s sorta morbid, Anny. And it aint gonna happen, you know that!”
  81. >That pisses you off a bit.
  82. “Spits, don’t talk to me like I’m some press junkie. I’m your partner and I –know- you’re more intelligent than you let on so cut the bullshit.”
  83. >That long, tense moment hangs in the air for a bit before Spitfire sighs and lowers her head, closing her eyes.
  84. >Shit, now you feel bad…
  85. >You sigh to and wave your hand.
  86. “C’mere…”
  87. >Spitfire trots over and climbs up into your lap, resting her head on the chair arm.
  88. >You scratch her ears.
  89. >”I just never really thought about it, Anny. There was always so much other crap going on like getting in and then winning captain and then keeping us at our best, and it wasn’t always easy.”
  90. >She looks up at you. “You know in our worst year with me as captain, ‘fore you showed up, Fancy made me do our finances? Said it was a cost saving measure because we couldn’t spend the bits!”
  91. >Spitfire a math whiz?
  92. “Not including endorsements, how much would each member’s pay per race be in a double summer season?”
  93. >Spitfire doesn’t even blink. “12,195 bits per racer per race.”
  94. >You’re stunned silent.
  95. “…Wow. I don’t-…Wow.”
  96. >Spitfire elbows you. “What, you said I was smarter than I let on!”
  97. >The two of you laugh.
  98.  
  99. >Once you both calm down, you point to your pack in the corner.
  100. “Look, point I’m making is, see that? Know what happens if I push that thing too hard?”
  101. >”You don’t race and we rip on you?”
  102. >Oh were it so easy.
  103. “It burns out, blows up on my back, and then I go splat from three thousand feet.”
  104. >Spitfire winces. “No helmet help there…”
  105. “Yeah, so I gotta be anal retentive about keeping it maintained.”
  106. >”So what’s your point?” she asks, rolling onto her back and looking up at you.
  107. “Point is I’m in deeper shit if my partner blows up and THEN I go splat.”
  108. >Spitfire rolls her eyes. “I aint gonna explode…”
  109. “No, but you could totally burn out. That wild child party devil reputation exists for a reason and it’ll sneak up on you if you let it.”
  110. >Spitfire is silent for a long bit as she chews the inside of her cheek.
  111. >”…Know what I think?”
  112. “Hmm?”
  113. >Spitfire rolls off your lap and trots to the stairs. “I think I’m hot as balls and wanna cool off. Pool party time!”
  114. >You faceplam.
  115. “Spits!”
  116. >Spitfire looks back at you and giggles. “But hey…I’ll meet you halfway, huh? If this starts to effect my races, which it TOTALLY won’t, then maybe I’ll listen to ya about this. But you gotta show me some proof, okay?”
  117. >You groan.
  118. “It’s not like I can –make- you listen otherwise.”
  119. >”Damn straight!” she says before winking and blowing a small peck. “Thanks for worrying, handsome.”
  120. >Spitfire heads upstairs and leaves you in your chair with your face in your hand.
  121. >That just meant you’d have to keep an eye out, right?...And make sure that she didn’t blow out during a race.
  122. >You sigh and stand, that pool was sounding good for your Saturday.
  123. “Hey yo, have you seen my black and red flame trunks?” you ask as you climb up the stairs.
  124. >You needed to take a break from the job too once in a while, after all.
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