Sealevel
Sealevel
Lv.7 1474/1540

(中英对照)代号向日葵∶谐波计划(全篇机翻)

第五章【初稿,可正常观看(非机翻)】hapter 05: Housewarming 第五章:居家温馨

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爱琳踏在森林中黑暗的土地上,蹄子已经裂开了。空气有些湿润,掺杂些腐植在阴暗中生长的气息。树枝划破了她的外套,划伤了她。不停地奔跑让她喘不上气,每一次呼吸都感觉有一把刀刺在了肋间。她被催促着,拉扯着,朝着一个方向狂奔,一个声音时不时在耳畔低语、发笑。她尝试着停下脚步,却失败了,她的心在颤抖,一种无能为力的绝望感涌上心头。

实际上,在恐惧与痛苦之下,爱琳意识到这又是那个噩梦。前方是一片空地。虽然她看不见,但已经认识到她在做梦的那部分身体已经期待很久了。穿过几个草丛,爱琳踉踉跄跄地走了过去,心中的恐惧生出了几丝慰藉感,随后一起消失在了疑惑中。

露娜正站在这片空地上,显得既高大又高贵,深黑色的鬃毛缓缓在她身边流淌。爱琳确信这是之前从来没发生过的事情。

“你好,爱琳。”露娜公主说道。

疼痛感在不经意的瞬间消退了。爱琳向前走了两步,她的大脑对于什么是真实的,什么根本不存在的,一片混乱。“露娜公主。怎么了……?”

“你在做一个噩梦,我想是一个曾经就做过的噩梦,对吗?”

“是的。”爱琳扫视着四周,第一次注意到远处景物在视线的边缘变得模糊,就像它们只有在被直视的时候才存在。有点……瘆马,“不过也隔了一段时间了,这是这几周来第一次。”“我很抱歉。”露娜低下头。“我应该早一点提供帮助的,不过在之前我没办法找到你的梦境。”“哦…”爱琳向下扫视着自己。她现在有些想念之前那个像陆马的身体了。她看着腿上流血的伤口在目光下逐渐消失,她皱着眉,“是因为我不属于这片魔法的世界?”“很有可能,”露娜回答道。她环顾四周,像是在思考着什么。“当我在中心城和你谈论关于翠绿王子的感受时,我没有意识到孔雀石对你造成了如此大的伤害。”

“我…明白。”爱琳犹豫了一下。露娜的言语中带着歉意,爱琳花了一点时间思索公主的回答,“好吧,我坚持我的想法,我不能因为孔雀石对我所做的事情来责怪翠绿。”

露娜低下头,耳朵朝前竖了起来,“不过,也许他的存在一直在让你回想起那段经历?”

“嗯,我…”爱琳颤栗着,眼睛却低下去看着地面。“是的,没错。我很抱歉。”

露娜摇头。“你不必道歉。我们都该记住这件事,或许你该再来一次城堡。我们可以赶他——”“不要那样做!!”爱琳脱口而出。露娜弓着眉看着爱琳,爱琳的脸红了。可能没多少马会对着公主那样讲话,“我是说…我不想被当成一个病号对待。我没事。我会解决的。”心中坚定了决心,接着,她的视线周围,爱琳看见几个模糊的影子站在两侧。“即使会花一段时间,但我能处理好,我有我的朋友陪着。”当爱琳盯着露娜时,露娜的脸上面无表情。然后她看向那些影子:右边是暮光,苹果杰克和萍琪,左边是小蝶,瑞瑞和云宝。露娜回头对着她温柔地笑。“非常好,我很高兴这里不再需要我了。”一双有力的翅膀像午夜时的书页一样展开,向下拍打。上升的时候,露娜道,“我该走了,回到朋友们的怀抱去吧,爱琳,晚安!”

梦境开始扭曲,森林溶解成了一个万花筒,所有东西都围绕在她周围,很快她就消失不见了。梦境开始褪色,形状变得模糊,像雨中淋湿的水彩画。爱琳向左看了看,然后向右看了看。梦中的朋友们依然和她站在一起,温柔地笑着。

“嗯,和以前不同的地方。”爱琳说。然后梦中咯咯笑的萍琪把椰奶油派拍在了她的脸上。

 

 

“额,还不错。”拉卡四周看了看她的朋友同时是大学同学的办公室。各种小玩意,更多的是装饰品,被和一些像家庭相册或剪贴簿的东西摆在书架上显眼的地方。从四面墙上,甚至桌子上,照片里大笑着的孩子和青年对着她一脸欢喜。她对着她的朋友挑了挑眉。“这很温馨,也很玛姬。”玛姬边摆手边笑。“好了,你知道为什么的。我整天都泡在办公室里,这里可能已经成我的第二个家了。”她贴近身子说道:“我没想到你会在我打完电话的第二天就出现在面前。我不是说过传送门要再过一个月才能打开吗?”“玛姬,我得实话实说了。”拉卡扭头朝两边警惕地看了看,就像有人在偷听一样,前倾身子,耳语道:“我开始讨厌这样的生活了。”玛姬脸上露出一种浮夸的惊恐表情,喘着粗气。“不!你不是 ’摇滚star’ 拉卡 拉威尔,那个环游生物学家!”她抓着她的双手在下巴处合十,“说,不是这样的!”拉卡咯咯笑了起来,就像很久没笑了一样,至少在她上次和玛姬在研究生合宿期间没有,当然她的老朋友依旧在用那个傻傻的外号。“好了,我觉得就是我出现这点功夫,我就可以修正这个计划的所有问题。”拉卡答道,身体收了回去,脸上是得意的笑容,“我的团队聚齐了,对吧?” “大多数人都在这儿了,”玛姬答道,“那么,好吧,我们还要找一些地理学家,气象学家和其他一些专家。我们还需要一些医务人员、安保人员和工程师。”拉卡挑起一条眉。“安保?” 

“那个行星有生命存在。”玛姬耸了耸肩。“虽然目前还没有发现文明的痕迹,没有建筑,没有无线电波,什么都没有。但那不意味着本地生物就没有危险。所以,是的,安保人员,荷枪实弹的那种。”

“你想知道我的看法吗?”拉卡的眉毛和双臂一样交叉在了一起。“我们没必要带着敌意去一个新世界。”“我们也没必要手无寸铁。”玛姬回击道。她叹了口气,把手在桌子上放平,“没有商量的余地,我不会让我最好的朋友死在外星食肉动物的肚子里。”“好吧。”拉卡转了一下眼球。“尽管这样,但你必须承认,那不失是一个有趣的方法。”

听到这里,她们都咯咯的笑了起来。有一小会儿,谈话陷入一段舒适的沉默。接着拉卡注意到她朋友脸上一个一闪而过的表情,叹了口气,猜得到接下来会发生什么了。她等很久了,但并不意味着她喜欢这样,尤其当对方是玛姬的时候。

“我很抱歉,拉卡,但你知道我必须要问,”对问这个无可避免的问题,玛姬做好了准备,“你的身体最近怎么样?”拉卡咬着牙咧嘴笑了笑,至少玛姬的歉意还算比较体贴,并不带着可怜的意思。“我很好,玛姬,”她说着,“完全好了,没有癌症迹象。”“很好,”玛姬点头道:“不过你——”

“我的上帝,拜托,玛姬,所有认识我的人都会对我说一遍。” 她隔着桌子瞪着她的朋友。“是,我是轻了不少。是,我是看起来很糟糕。但我很好,真的。”

玛姬也对她邹起了眉。“我不是想要说那个。”拉卡身体后倾,打量起她。“哦?”

“我想说的是我们这里有一套攀升设备。你听说过了吧?”看到拉卡突然蒙圈的表情,玛姬笑了。“哦。”“对。”玛姬抄起双手向后仰,看起来有些得意。“我们可以用我们的攀升设备双重检验来确保你的安全,解决我们送你出来之前出现的任何问题。”

“哦,”拉卡重复着。“那么,那要花多久呢?”

玛姬作苦相。“那是台老设备,我们没法像新机器那样作针对性的修正,也许我们会让你待一周,或者更久。”“哦,嗯,”拉卡思考了一会儿,摇了摇头。“算了,等我回来再说吧,我要确保有足够的时间来完备计划”

玛姬前倾身子靠着椅子,皱着眉头。“拉卡,我们有一个月,还多,实际上。我们有大量的时间。”

拉卡大笑着摇头。“玛姬,我知道你并没怎么去过那片土地,你要相信我,计划这个东西多长都不嫌久。”

“好吧,好吧。”玛姬举起双手来了个髪国军礼。“不如就从给你未来的队友作介绍开始?”

“噢,好!”拉卡激动地坐了起来,眼中闪着光芒。“你给我派过来了一只独角兽,对吗”

“只有一只,尽管以后会从中心城来一队的小马,但光谱魅力(Spectral Char)将直接向你汇报。”

“哦,我等不及想见到他了!”拉卡兴奋地拍起手,“我觉得他肯定很棒。”

玛姬的脸僵了一秒,慢慢地也笑了。“哦,他在忙其他事情。行吧,现在我们就去看看他,好吗?”

 

—————————Twilight———————————————

天还很早,小马镇的街上的闹市景象也才刚刚开始。暮光忍住哈欠,不时后悔昨晚入睡前花了太多时间阅读那本厚厚的、插图丰富的书——《奇异的动植物》(Fantastical Flora and Flora)。

是很棒的一本书,但此时此刻她更希望把时间花在睡觉上,萍琪派就没这么多烦恼了,看到她在自己身边一边快乐地蹦蹦跳跳,一边哼着歌,至少在暮光看来,精力充沛得有点过头了。萍琪半小时前就到图书馆了,用一篮子新鲜出炉的马芬早餐停下了暮光嘟囔的嘴,她一直嚷着一两个小时,最多三小时就回来。

怎么看马芬当早餐都是很不错的,篮子里还剩了半打,萍琪一路蹦着,篮子在她头上竟也平衡得很好。暮光混乱的思绪又回到了蹄头的问题上,“所以,小蝶拒绝拿钱?”

听到这个,萍琪停下了上下跳动,四蹄应声着地,皱着眉头,走在她的身边。

“她是的,”萍琪说道,耳朵耷拉了下来,“Something about it being a gift from Sunflower and she couldn’t take money for it,now”

“但我们四个都同意了呀,”暮光失望地说道,“我们都凑了钱,给爱琳买了一套羽毛护理套装。并且如果我问苹果杰克和云宝黛西的话,她们也一定会加入的。”突然想到萍琪说的话,“等等,她说这是爱琳送的礼物?”

“对鸭。”萍琪摇头。“我也不明白。哎呀,最让马摸不着头脑的应该是我才对,而不是小蝶!”

暮光摇头,“好吧,我想,我们可以过一会儿再去找她,就在我们看完爱琳后,当然。”

萍琪的脸上又重回灿烂,“当然!”

他们走着,或者对于萍琪来说,跳着。看见爱琳的房子,暮光感觉到了小小的满足感。她很有幸能帮朋友找到这个地方,并且当时爱琳对她的新住所的感激之情已经让暮光心满意足了。

穿过院子大门,她们两个叩响了房门,几秒后,爱琳开了门,看见她们两个有点喜出望外。

“嘿,朋友们!”爱琳说着露出一个大大的笑容。

“你好啊,向日葵!”萍琪说着,“我们能进吗?我们带了礼物和马芬!”

“严格上是暖房礼物,”暮光笑着加了一句,“是一些我们觉得你应该用得上的东西。”

“当然可以进来了,”爱琳站开让出了路,“有一点乱,但请别介意。”

“哦,我确定我们不……”暮光脚步放缓了,看着一堆纸箱,有些已经被打开了,里面的东西撒了一地。

“wow。”

“我知道。”爱琳头低了下去,蹄子在地板蹭来蹭去,看得出有些窘迫。“我刚才在找东西。”

“要帮忙吗?”萍琪丢下了马芬篮子问道,“找东西我超在行的!”

“哦!不,萍琪,没事!”爱琳两眼瞪圆,脸上夸张的笑容。“实际上我已经找到我想找的那些东西了,很高兴你们能来,因为那就是要给你们的礼物!”

萍琪喘着气,“我们也有礼物?”

“没错!”爱琳笑的时候眼中闪着光,“但首先,要我给你们拿点什么吗?我有昨晚聚会剩下的各种各样的好吃的东西。哦!我还发现了我妈偷偷藏在我行李里的一个应急包,里面有一堆饼干。”

“哦哦哦,饼干!”萍琪的耳朵竖了起来,“哪种的?”

“好的,有一些巧克力曲奇。”

“很不错,”萍琪了解了般地点头。

“还有一些花生酱的,一些糖饼干,和肉桂饼干(snickerdoodle)”

“太棒了!”萍琪说着,然后皱着眉,斜着眼看着爱琳。“什么是肉桂饼干?”

暮光疑惑地看着萍琪。“呃,萍琪?”正要开始说话。

爱琳抬头向萍琪说:“你们没吃过肉桂饼干?”

“呃…我不觉着怎么样,那是什么?”

爱琳笑着,“那可是有史以来最好吃的一种饼干!我要给你尝尝!”说完便小跑向着厨房,回头喊道:“暮暮,你也想来点吗?”

“呃,好?”暮光迟疑地说。

“好的,一分钟!”爱琳说着穿过门口消失了。

暮光转头向咯咯笑的萍琪。“萍琪,我很肯定你知道什么是肉桂饼干。”

萍琪一脸无害地眨眼睛:“哦?”

“是的。”暮光皱着眉,“我肯定,我想你以前自己也做过。”

“有吗?”

“是的。事实上,镇子里还有一只叫‘肉桂饼干’的小马,带着肉桂饼干的可爱标记。”

“真的吗?”

“真的!”暮光跺着蹄子。“你怎么可能……不记得……”

她看着朋友的脸,渐渐说不下去了。当然,她在笑。但现在,萍琪的眼睛里又闪着调皮的光。

“哦……”暮光的脑袋里开始回过了神。“哦!” 她小心地瞥了一眼厨房门口,可以听到里面餐具叮当作响。她向萍琪倾过身去,压低声音说:“这是一个恶作剧吗? 我们是在捉弄爱琳吗?”

“老实说,暮暮。” 她脸上又露出了笑容,“我不知道你在干什么,但是,是的,我只是在开一个小玩笑。”

“哦,好呀! !”暮光拍着蹄子,咯咯地笑了起来。“可以带我一个吗?”

萍琪的眼睛眯了一会儿,她的嘴闭成了一条直线。暮光僵直地站着,萍琪打量着她,大概是在判断她是否准备好帮助她搞恶作剧。当萍琪的脸突然露出灿烂的笑容时,暮光松了一口气。

“当然可以,暮暮!”萍琪笑着答道。她眯起那双闪烁的蓝眼睛,凑近暮光的耳朵悄悄地说着:“你必须要确保自己很放松,表现得要很随意。最重要的是绝对不要引起向日葵的注意,否则整个恶作剧就毁了。”

“明白!”暮光用力地点了点头。“哦!她来了!暮光忍不住兴奋地跳了起来。

萍琪瞪大了眼睛。她压着语调说:“暮暮,记得要表现得平常一点!”

“明白!暮光深吸一口气,呼了出来,试图让她平静下来。“明白。”

暮光很快就露出了一个平常的微笑,爱琳小跑着回到客厅,背上放着一盘饼干。

“嗯,我们开动……吧?”爱琳停下来,歪着头,看向暮光。“你还好吗,暮暮?”

“什么?”想到爱琳可能已经明白这是个恶作剧了,暮光感到一阵慌乱。她慌忙地瞥了萍琪一眼,萍琪也睁大了眼睛望着她。她回头又看向爱琳,花了更大的力气使她的笑容显得很平常。“有什么问题吗?”

“嗯,只是……没事了。”爱琳摇了摇头。“没什么大问题,总之,肉桂饼干 !开动吧。”

暮光如释重负,松了口气,爱琳显然还在蒙在鼓里。她用牙齿把盘子从背上拿了下来,坐了下来,把盘子传送到她翘起的蹄子上,举起来,让另外两只小马挑一块金黄色的饼干。暮光用她的魔法抓起一块饼干,咬了一小口。

“嗯!” 暮光被这个恶作剧搅和得心不在焉,除了一股模糊的肉桂味外,甚至都没有细品饼干的味道。“真是太美味了!”

“你妈妈是个很棒的烘焙师。”萍琪舔着嘴唇。从爱琳震惊的表情来看,暮光只能推测是因为萍琪一口就把整块饼干吃掉了。“我能再拿一块吗?”

“哦,呃,当然。” 爱琳再次把盘子递了过去,让萍琪再拿一块饼干。然后她扭头看向暮光问道:“你确定你没事吗?”

在暮光看来,爱琳脸上是一种怀疑,还带着一丝惧怕的表情,她的几缕鬃毛破坏了她平常的直发风格,她向她的朋友挤出一个更平常的微笑。“是的,当然!为什么不呢,哈哈?”

萍琪在她旁边偷笑,暮光也忍不住笑了起来。这个恶作剧越来越难继续下去了!

“只是……呃,如果你要找洗手间,就在——”

爱琳没能说完这句话,因为萍琪已经笑得倒在地板上大叫了。暮光的防线崩溃了,她也笑了起来。主要是因为恶作剧成功了,但同时让她松了一口气的是,是萍琪先露馅的。爱琳只是困惑地看着他们,脸上带着迟疑的笑容,这让暮光笑得更开心了。

“嗯,伙伴们?” 当笑声渐渐小声时,爱琳说,“你们都怎么了?”

暮光的肋骨笑得正在作痛,但她还是努力说出了话:“没错!这是个恶作剧!我们一直都知道肉桂饼干是什么!你被捉弄了!”

不知什么原因,这让萍琪又开始了新一轮的狂笑。尽管暮光不清楚这次萍琪又在笑什么,但也咯咯地笑了起来。爱琳也加入了进来,因为她终于明白了这是个恶作剧,至少暮光一开始是这么想的。

“那个,” 爱琳说着,用蹄踝(球节/fetlock)擦去了眼泪,“太差劲了,这根本算不上恶作剧。然后她朝暮光咧嘴一笑,接着说:“你脸上的表情……我还以为你便秘了呢!”

“我不是——”暮光说着,被打断了。

萍琪又发出了一声大笑,仰面躺着,把四条腿都踢向空中。爱琳也笑了起来,笑得她的腿都有点抖了。现在,暮光是成了一个局外人,一边咯咯地笑,一边感到有些莫名其妙。

一两分钟后,最后一轮的笑声开始变小了。

“谢谢,暮暮。萍琪仰面躺着,舒畅地呼了一口气。“因为这次恶作剧是个很傻的主意,但你的表现让它的效果比我期盼的还要好。”

“等等,我不明白。暮光在另外两只母马之间来回张望,完全蒙了。“怎么会是一个傻主意呢?我们骗到她了呀!”

萍琪向上看着她,笑得哼了一声,然后抱着肋骨呻吟起来。“好了,暮暮,我肚子笑得太疼了!”

爱琳看着她,脸上,完全是一副被一只被开了个大玩笑的小马逗笑的表情。

暮光摇了摇头,一脸懵逼。“我不明白。”

每次她想尝试问出更多的情况弄清现状,朋友们就会大笑起来。

 

——————————————Luna————————————

 

露娜公主,夜之卫者,梦之守护,月的操控者,在她刚打开那扇皇家姐妹私马餐厅的大门时,遭遇了袭击。当时她一直计划着在休息前吃丰盛的一餐,再和姐姐好好地谈一谈,得到的却是一只绿色的小空角兽避开她的四蹄,跑向了身后的走廊。马上,这位小马驹的保姆便一头撞了上来,只听见一声惨叫。露娜往后退了半步,眨了眨眼睛,那匹撞到她的母马拖着后腿踉踉跄跄地向后倒去,最后一屁股坐在了地上。保姆是一只名叫蜜糖心(Honey Heart)的淡金色雌性独角兽,她晃着头,正在看自己撞上了什么。

当她发现自己全速撞向的是露娜公主时,蜜糖心的眼睛都鼓起来了,她喘着气,站了起来。

“万分抱歉,公主殿下!”蜜糖心低下头行礼,嘴几乎都贴在地板上了。“今天早上,小殿下一直很……闹腾”,苦着脸接着说,“和往常一样。”

露娜转动着耳朵,捕捉着那只在走廊上夺路而逃还在咯咯笑的小马驹的声响。片刻后,翠绿王子愤怒地发着牢骚,被露娜用魔法托着带回了餐厅。

“()无伤大雅,”露娜说着便把王子往门口带,“我想你在找这个吧?”

“不!”那位不大有皇家风范的王子大叫着:“不,不,不!”

这是他所知道的为数不多词汇中的一个,新词汇的出现往往具有惊人的规律性。但还有些显然是他从他的侍卫那里学来的,这就使得塞拉斯提亚宣布某些词语和短句是不可以在小殿下身边使用的。

“感谢你,殿下,”蜜糖心说着又鞠了一躬,“小殿下真的是一个——”

“坏蛋!”翠绿大声叫了出来,展现出他日益增多的词汇量中的另一个词汇。

蜜糖心愣住了,一丝谨慎的表情闪过脸上,“我想说的是‘挑战’。”

她清了清嗓子,点亮了独角,从露娜那里接过小殿下。翠绿的腿开始在半空中狂蹬,他的小翅膀疯狂地扇动着,他开始用自己最糟糕的词汇来表达自己的不开心,“坏蛋!不!坏蛋!”

“这可不是一位王子该有的言辞。”露娜告诫道。

现在,很明显,是翠绿王子第一次意识到还有其他小马加入对自己的再次禁闭,他不再生气地瞪着保姆,而是直勾勾地盯着露娜。

“姑姑呜!”他直接冲着他的保姆的左耳尖叫着。蜜糖心 缩了一下,耳朵折了下来。露娜朝她投以同情的一笑,然后转向她的侄子。

“早上好。今天过得怎么样?”

“好。抱抱!”翠绿伸出两只前蹄,挣扎减弱了。

露娜扬起眉。“当我们想要什么的时候,会说什么?”

翠绿王子疑惑了好一会儿。然后他突然露出了灿烂的笑容。“请, 抱抱?”

“很好,侄子。”露娜投来一个温和的笑容。她俯下身来,趁他还在蜜糖心的魔法里飘着的时候,给了他一个温柔的拥抱,然后在他的脸颊上亲昵地吻了一下。门口两旁的守卫们让露娜的说教显得有些严肃,这是他们的作用。蜜糖心再次鞠躬,“谢谢你抓住他,公主。他每次早餐的时候都有些活跃,并且他真的很擅长跑路。”

“我们没必要这样,不是吗?”露娜说着,终于完全进了餐厅,带上了身后的门。她换了副严肃的表情,“现在,侄儿,准备好像匹大马一样去完成你的早餐了吗?”

他罕见地回答了声“好的!”

翠绿跑了过去,扑通一声坐在了矮桌旁的地毯上,相对安静地待在那里,保姆开始帮助他完成早餐。一个穿着一件普通黑裙子,系着一条白色的围裙的女佣过来拿走了露娜的菜单。在女佣下去准备早餐的空隙,露娜转过头对正试着引导小殿下吃饭的蜜糖心说道:“我的皇姐又忙着没法和我们共进早餐了吗?”

露娜并没有有意去发姐姐的牢骚,但从这位保姆紧绷的神情看来,她的话的确是那样的。当蜜糖心回答的时候,她非常小心地掂量着语调,看起来皇宫里的员工都喜欢在她身边这样说话。

“是的,殿下。看上去塞拉斯提亚公主有一早上的事情要办。”

“嗯噗,什么事情会重要到让她再一次错过和她妹妹以及崽子吃饭的时间?”

露娜确信蜜糖心知道自己并不只是在问一个无聊的问题,在她当保姆的职责中,她会被随时告知塞蕾丝缇雅的日程安排,为了以防发生突发事件而不能及时赶到。

“啊哈,好吧,”蜜糖心摆弄着她的蹄子,“塞蕾丝缇雅公主提到过要在参加完贵族委员会后才能过来。”

“我知道了。”

雌驹沉默了,只听得见翠绿不停地咿咿呀呀。这个王子,尽管从生理上来说只有几个月大,但却有着至少两岁大马驹的身体和心理状况,和一只小猫的精力和好奇心。露娜看着他露出了微笑,蜜糖心正尽她最大努力让小殿下吃下早餐。

“你对他很好。”露娜提到。

这份肯定让蜜糖心很高兴。“我只能尽我所能,公主殿下。” 她的言语中隐藏的谦虚与她自信的语气和平静的目光相比有些突兀。“毕竟,我自己也有几个孩子。再说照顾小殿下真的是一件很有意思的事情。

一大团苹果酱飞了过来,溅湿了保姆的半侧脑袋,在脖子上黏糊糊地流着,露娜吃惊地缩了一下(winced)。

“真的很有意思,”蜜糖心陪着笑脸重复着。

露娜偷笑,保姆用一块亚麻布擦干净了自己。一会儿,一只独角兽推着餐车进了房间。除了一碗甜粥,露娜还点了几个小馅饼,几片新鲜的水果在银盘里,一杯新鲜苹果汁,让早餐更加丰盛。

女佣鞠了一躬便转身离开房间。

“可以的话,留下餐车。”露娜说着,“塞蕾丝缇雅也许会过来。”女佣再次鞠躬,“当然可以,殿下。”

房间中再次只剩三马,露娜、翠绿、和蜜糖心,还有两名会很快会过来待命的佣人。露娜喝着粥,翠绿玩过了劲儿,肚子鼓鼓的,打了个打哈欠。

“差不多该睡一觉了,”蜜糖心轻轻说着。

“呃嗯,”露娜应着,摇头道,“不太合时宜。塞蕾丝缇雅想在他打瞌睡前看他一下。”

“当然了,殿下。”

露娜静静吃着,翠绿的头越低越低,他的眼睛像猫头鹰般每隔一分钟就合一下。最后,王子的注意力已经无法支撑他的脑袋了,他扑通一声倒在垫子上,像小狗一样蜷成一团。

露娜看着蜜糖心,示意她过来。那只雌驹垫着步子,避免吵醒王子,坐下来疑惑地看着露娜。

“蜜糖心,也许你能回答我一个问题,”露娜压着声音说着。“可以的话,公主,我很乐意回答。”

“我的皇姐以前从未抚养过任何孩子,最近的也只是收一两个学生。她也幸亏能靠你和城堡里的几个佣人照顾孩子,但我的很好奇,塞蕾丝缇雅和翠绿的关系到底怎么样?”

雌驹的脸上闪过一丝惊恐的神色。“我不会揣测——“

“不,你当然不会。”露娜很快地回答,“别害怕,这段谈话将只是我们两个之间的事,我发誓。”

蜜糖心用余光瞟了一眼房间里的两个佣人。露娜叹了口气,面向他俩。

“现在刚好是去吃点点心的最佳时间,你们不觉得吗?”

独角兽们交换了一下目光,然后回头看了露娜一眼,一齐鞠躬。离开时,顺手轻轻地把门关上了。

“我或许该开门见山,”两马刚走,露娜便开口道,“我很担心。看起来我的皇姐把翠绿大部分时间都交给了城堡里各种佣人。这难道还不奇怪吗?”

“我…我不知道,露娜殿下,我真的——”

露娜前倾身子,一只蹄子搭在蜜糖心的腿上。“不必害怕报复,我只是想简单了解一下塞蕾丝缇雅是不是在推卸她对她儿子职责。”

蜜糖心的眼睛里闪着光,脊背僵直,“她绝不会!”

她一边把腿挪开,一边恶狠狠地说道:“塞蕾丝缇雅对他极度关心和有耐心,联想到她有那么多的职责,我很惊讶于她能如此冷静和处变不惊。”

露娜忍不住轻轻笑了起来,让保姆一头雾水。

“我发觉我在不断地提醒自己,从我被囚禁在月亮上开始,已有千年,”露娜解释道,“你描述的塞蕾丝缇雅和我记忆中的判若两马。”

“怎么会这样?”蜜糖心急切地问了后,才赶紧加上了迟到的:“公主!”

“那时的小马国更疯狂,”露娜慢慢地摇了摇头。“在我的记忆中,塞蕾丝缇雅从来都不是‘冷静’或‘处变不惊’的。”

“那你会怎么描述我?”

露娜楞了一下,转向餐厅的门,已经被打开了,塞蕾丝缇雅站在那里,脸上挂着愉快的笑容。

“我会说‘热诚’但又‘任性’。”露娜朝她咧嘴一笑,朝一个空垫子点点头。“一起来吧,皇姐。”塞蕾丝缇雅一边朝着空垫子走,一边微笑着看着熟睡的翠绿王子。几个烘焙糕点裹在塞蕾丝缇雅金色的魔法里,从餐车飘向塞蕾丝缇雅桌子上的盘子。

“所以,我是听到你很担心我抽不出多少精力在翠绿身上吗?”塞蕾丝缇雅躺在垫子上问道。露娜回答时,她咬了一口糕点。

“是的,皇姐。我无意冒犯,我知道对于一个公主来说,要抽出时间处理私人事务是多么困难的事情。”露娜展开翅膀,竖起羽毛。“星星知道我一晚上维护梦境是个多大的挑战,我不在的时候,人口大大增加了。”

塞蕾丝缇雅叹了口气,“是的,这就是和平稳定的代价,不过我愿意承担。”她又咬了一口糕点,然后若有所思地咀嚼,咽了下去。“不过,或许你说的也有道理,我会试着卸掉更多工作,以确保有更多的时间陪他。”

“可以,”露娜点点头说,“毕竟只是暂时的,等他长大了,就可以和我们一起掌管这片土地。”

塞蕾丝缇雅以一种不太公主的方式哼了一声。“露娜,别那么快就为他规划未来。虽然我们自己的生活没有太多的选择,但我希望他能选择自己的道路。”

“那么,也许我们可以让爱琳当四公主?”露娜轻描淡写地问,试图用柠檬馅饼挡住自己的笑容。

塞蕾丝缇雅呛了一下,然后把一杯苹果汁升到她的嘴旁,迅速地喝了一口。“别拿这个开玩笑!”她苦恼地说。“我花了一个小时试图说服那个固执的贵族委员会,让他们相信她不会有任何头衔或政治权力。”

想到那些惶恐的贵族们,露娜感到好笑,他们可能认为他们“古老”的血统受到了威胁。

“他们真的这么相信我们会让她做一个小马国的统治者?”露娜笑着问。

“要么真是那样,要么是他们希望通过攀升装置把所有拥有贵族血统的马都变成空角兽。” 塞蕾丝缇雅又哼了一声,这次是厌恶。“而且,我得加一句,只有贵胄。”

露娜转了转眼珠。“自然”。

“嗯,公主们,请原谅我打扰一下?”

翠绿已经睡着了,蜜糖心很安静,她已经完全忘记了她们俩在一起的时候,两姐妹还在说话。

回应她的是塞蕾丝缇雅,“怎么了,蜜糖心?”

“我无意打断您,不过,或许我把小殿下带回他的房间去睡会更好一些。”

塞莱斯蒂热切地看了小马驹一会儿。“是的,是的,当然。还有,谢谢。”

“我的荣幸,殿下,”蜜糖心说着,站起来鞠了一躬。

保姆的角闪着光,王子,连同垫子一起,被轻轻地举到空中。她的动作很轻,甚至都没有打乱他的呼吸节奏。塞蕾丝缇雅脸上带着愁闷的表情,看着保姆离开,小马驹漂浮在她前面的垫子上。当他们身后的门关上后,她转过身去看着露娜,表情变得坚定起来。

“我不会辜负他的,露娜。” 塞蕾丝缇雅皱了皱眉。“我要给他一个他从没有过的童年,我发誓。”

露娜站了起来,绕着桌子走了一圈,最后在年长的公主旁坐了下来。她把一只翅膀搭在塞蕾丝缇雅的背上,用鼻子蹭着她的肩膀。

“我知道你会的,姐姐。”露娜温和地说。“我知道你会的。”

-----------------Erin--------------------

爱琳房间里的事情终于平息了,暮光发现这个“恶作剧”一点也不像她试图表现得平常那么有趣之后,生气了一阵子。不过,蹄边的礼物到是很快把每只小马都带回了现实。

“这是一些烘焙用的香料!”萍琪说着,推过一个包给爱琳。“然后这是一些配方!” 她狡黠地看了暮光一眼,把书递了过去,加了一句,“里面甚至还有一份不错的肉桂饼干的配方。”

“哈,哈,”尽管尽管暮光边说边带着微笑。

“谢谢你,萍琪。”爱琳笑着收好东西,把它们放在了茶几上。

“好吧,我也带了一些东西过来,”暮光用魔法从她的鞍包里抽出一本书,将它托向爱琳。“这是小马镇的完整历史,我认为你会喜欢它的!”

“哦,暮暮!谢谢你!”

“还有呢!我还带了《初学者魔法练习》,虽说是幼儿读物,但我觉得,因为你以前从没用过魔法,或许它对你会有一定帮助。”

“哦哦哦!”爱琳感激地看着那本书。接着她四下看了看,“我今天出去买东西的时候,或许应该记得买一个书架回来。”

“那么,我们的礼物呢?”萍琪眼睛发着光问。

“萍琪!”暮光责备道。

爱琳笑着,站起身来,“稍等,我去给你们拿。”

萍琪和暮光带着不同的耐心等着她。爱琳从中间那一大堆箱子的另一边走了过去,靠墙堆放着八个礼品包装的小盒子,爱琳看了标签后,从里面拿出了两个。她把两个箱子放在背上,小心翼翼地走回两只小马坐着的地方。

“在你们打开之前,我要你们承诺不会告诉其他马。我希望给你们所有马一个惊喜,好吗?”

暮光立马点头说道:“当然!”

“诚心发誓飞呀飞,眼里塞个蛋糕杯。”萍琪一边说着一边滑稽地做着动作。

“好吧,很有效,我猜。”爱琳咯咯笑了。

她递过礼盒,一个带着生日蛋糕和气球的礼盒给了萍琪,另一个星星花纹的给了暮光。独角兽的魔法很快扯开了包装,看到里面的东西,暮光喘着大气。

“这是…?”

“哦,老天!”萍琪说着,目瞪口呆地看着暮光的礼物。萍琪开始用牙齿撕下自己礼物上剩下的包装纸,湿乎乎的纸屑飞了起来。同时,暮光也小心地打开了箱子,纸板轻轻滑开。

“哦,天……爱琳,这太棒了!

艾琳笑的很开心,“你喜欢吗?”

“喜欢!” 暮光小心翼翼地把平板电脑从盒子里拿了出来。“哦!它的背面有我的可爱标记!”

“什么? ! 萍琪在匆忙中把自己的盒子弄坏了一点,里面是一台亮粉色的平板电脑和一些配件。眼睛睁得大大的,萍琪慢慢地、小心地把平板电脑拿出来,翻过来,后面有三个印在背面的气球。“哦……”

暮光的是和她肤色很相配的紫色,背面有她的可爱标记。她盯着它看了很长时间,然后看着爱琳。“它们上面都有我们可爱的标记吗?”

爱琳点了点头,当她看到她的朋友们是多么喜欢这些礼物时,她高兴得浑身发抖。“我找到了一个可以为你们定制平板电脑的地方。并且,如果你不想只用语音指令,每台都配有三支手写笔。”

“哦,哇……哦,哇!”萍琪一遍又一遍用着蹄子滑着,爱琳很高兴,因为她要求安装了加强型屏幕保护器。“它能做些什么?”

“好吧,让我们看看。”爱琳思索着,用蹄子拍了拍下巴。“在小马镇安装好wifi之前,很多应用程序都无法运行,但一旦安装好,你们就可以互相打电话、发送图片、信息或电影……嗯……哦,暮暮,你的里有一大堆科学和历史书籍,还有一些小说。一些纪录片。还有一本日记,如果你想用的话。萍琪,你的有一个烘焙数据库,还有成吨的(a ton of)音乐和电影。”

萍琪的眼睛一眨一眨的。“一整吨(a ton)?”问道,用蹄子把东西挑了起来。

爱琳笑了。“嗯,不是字面上的成吨(a ton),但是足够你不重复不间断地看一个多月。我记得你喜欢动画和喜剧,所以我在装的时候放了一堆。”

“爱琳,这……”暮光眼看就要哭了,爱琳被吓了一跳。“这真是太棒了!谢谢你!”

爱琳笑了,她的心里暖洋洋的。“这是我的荣幸,暮暮。”

“向日葵,我只有一个问题,”萍琪的声音出乎意料的严肃。

爱琳不敢相信萍琪最后只会问一个问题。“怎么了,萍琪?”

“我该怎么打开它?”

爱琳笑了。“为什么我不给你们俩上一节如何使用它们的速成课?”

大家一致同意,这是最佳的解决办法。三个朋友坐了下来,爱琳开始高兴地教他们使用新高科技玩具的一些基本操作。

 

 

 

本章已完,下面是机翻中英对照

 

 

Her hooves were cracked and broken as they pounded along the dark soil of the forest floor. The air smelled damp, of rot and of things growing in shadow. Branches whipped at her coat, cutting and bruising her as she ran. Her breathing came in gasping sobs, the painful stitch in her ribs like a knife being driven in every time she drew a breath.

 

她的蹄子在森林地面的黑土上踩得又响又破。空气中弥漫着潮湿的气味,有腐烂的味道,还有阴影中的东西。树枝抽打着她的外套,在她奔跑时割伤了她。她的呼吸变成了抽泣,每次她一吸气,肋骨就像刀一样刺痛。

 

 

 

She was being herded, or pulled, towards something horrible, all while a voice muttered and laughed in her ears. Her heart was thudding, and a panicked sense of desperation was welling in her as she tried, and failed, to stop herself from running.

 

她被赶着,或者被拉着,走向一个可怕的东西,这时一个声音在她耳边低声地笑着。她的心怦怦直跳,当她试图阻止自己逃跑时,一种恐慌的绝望感涌上心头,但她失败了。

 

On some level, underneath the terror and pain, Erin was aware of it being the same old nightmare once again. There was a clearing ahead of her. She couldn’t see it, but the part of her that was aware she was dreaming had been anticipating it for some time, now. She broke through some bushes and stumbled into the clearing with a sense of relief welling up behind her terror, only to have both fade away in mute confusion.

 

在某种程度上,在恐惧和痛苦之下,艾琳意识到这又是一场同样的噩梦。她前面有一片空地。她看不见它,但她意识到自己在做梦的那个部分,现在已经期待它有一段时间了。她穿过几丛灌木,跌跌撞撞地走进空地,恐惧的背后涌起一种如释重负的感觉,结果两人都在默默的困惑中消失了。

 

Princess Luna stood alone in the clearing, tall and regal, with her dark ethereal mane streaming away from her. This was something that Erin was almost certain had never happened before.

 

卢娜公主独自站在空地上,高高的,雍容华贵,乌黑飘逸的鬃毛从她身上飘散开来。这是一件艾琳几乎可以肯定以前从未发生过的事情。

 

“Hello, Erin,” Princess Luna said.

 

“你好,艾琳。”卢娜公主说。

 

The pain faded the instant Erin stopped thinking about it. She took a few steps forward, her mind whirling in confusion as her sense of what was real and what wasn’t started reasserting itself. “Princess Luna. What...?”

 

艾琳一停止思考,疼痛就消失了。她向前走了几步,脑子里一片混乱,意识到什么是真的,什么是没有的。“月神公主。什么……?”

 

“You were having a nightmare. One that you have had before, I presume?”

 

“你在做恶梦。我猜是你以前吃过的吧?”

 

“Yes.” Erin glanced around the clearing, noticing for the first time how the landscape around her blurred and fuzzed at the edge of her vision, like it was only actually there when she was looking directly at it. It was… disconcerting. “Not for a while though. This is the first time in weeks.”

 

“是的。艾琳扫视了一下周围的空地,第一次注意到她周围的景物在她的视线边缘模糊模糊,好像只有当她直视它的时候,它才真的在那里。这是…令人不安。“不过暂时还没有。这是几周以来的第一次。”

 

“My apologies.” Luna bowed her head. “I would have offered my assistance earlier, but I could never find your dreams before now.”

 

“我的歉意。卢娜低下了头。“我本想早些提供帮助,但在此之前我永远找不到你的梦想。”

 

“Oh…” Erin glanced down at herself. She was dreaming of her previous body, the one resembling an earth pony. She frowned at the bleeding cuts up and down her legs, which vanished even as she looked. “Because I wasn’t part of the magical field?”

 

“哦……”艾琳低头看了自己一眼。她梦见了她以前的身体,一个像地球小马的身体。她皱起眉头,看着她腿上的伤口,就在她看的时候,伤口已经消失了。“因为我不是魔法界的人?”

 

“Most likely,” Luna replied. She looked around the clearing with a thoughtful expression on her face. “When I spoke to you in Canterlot about your feelings regarding Prince Verdant, I was unaware of exactly how much harm Malachite had done to you.”

 

“很可能。”卢娜回答。她环顾着空地,脸上带着若有所思的表情。“当我在坎特罗跟您谈到您对弗登斯亲王的感情时,我并不知道孔雀石对您造成了多大的伤害。”

 

“I... see.” Erin hesitated before continuing. Luna’s statement had the feel of an apology to it. She took a moment to consider her answer. “Well, what I said still applies. I can’t blame Verdant for what Malachite did to me.”

 

“我……看到的。艾琳犹豫了一下才继续说。卢娜的声明给人一种道歉的感觉。她花了一点时间考虑她的答案。“嗯,我说的仍然适用。孔雀石对我所做的一切,我不能怪青翠。”

 

Luna titled her head and perked her ears forward. “Though, perhaps, he serves as a reminder?”

 

卢娜歪着头,竖起耳朵。“不过,也许他是在提醒你呢?”

 

“Uh, I…” Erin shuddered and she dropped her eyes to the forest floor. “Yes. He does. I’m sorry.”

 

“呃,我……”艾琳打了个寒颤,垂下眼睛看着森林的地面。“是的。他所做的。我很抱歉。”

 

Luna shook her head. “No need to apologize. It is something we will keep in mind, should you visit the castle again. We can keep him away—”

 

卢娜摇了摇头。“没必要道歉。如果你再去那座城堡,我们会记住这一点的。我们可以把他赶走——”

 

“Don’t do that!” Erin blurted without thinking. She blushed as Luna arched an eyebrow at her. There probably weren’t that many people who said things like that to the Princesses. “I mean… I don’t need to be treated like I’m broken. I’m not. I’ll deal with it.” A resolve firmed in her chest, and, out of the corner of her eyes, she could make out several indistinct figures standing on either side of her. “Even if it takes a while, I can deal with it. I have my friends with me.”

 

“不要那样做!艾琳不假思索地脱口而出。她脸红了,卢娜对她挑了挑眉毛。可能没有多少人对公主说过这样的话。“我的意思是……我不需要像对待一个破碎的人那样对待我。”我不是。我会处理的。她胸中下了决心,从眼角的余光里,她可以分辨出站在她两边的几个模糊的人影。“即使需要一段时间,我也能应付。我有朋友和我在一起。”

 

The look on Luna’s face was unreadable for a long moment as she stared at her. Then she looked at the figures: Twilight, Applejack and Pinkie to Erin’s right, Fluttershy, Rarity and Rainbow on her left. Luna looked back at her with a gentle smile. “Very well. I am glad to see that I am not needed here.” Powerful wings unfurled like twin sheets of midnight and beat downwards. As Luna rose into the air, she called out, “I shall leave you, then, to the care of your friends. Erin, sleep well!”

 

卢娜盯着她看的时候,脸上的表情好长一段时间都看不清。然后她看了看这些数字:右面是暮光之城,右面是苹果杰克和小指,左面是蝴蝶,左边是彩虹。卢娜回头看着她,脸上带着温柔的微笑。“很好。我很高兴看到这里不需要我。强大的翅膀展开,像午夜的两张床单,向下拍打。当卢娜升到空中时,她喊道:“那么,我将把你留给你的朋友们照顾了。”艾琳,睡好!”

 

The dream distorted, the forest dissolving into a fractal kaleidoscope of colors, all centered around the Princess, who promptly vanished. The colors of the dream started to fade and wash away as the shapes became blurry and indistinct, like a watercolor in the rain. Erin looked to her left, and then her right. The dream-created versions of her friends still stood with her, smiling gently.

 

梦境扭曲了,森林变成了一个分形的彩色万花筒,所有的一切都围绕着公主,公主很快就消失了。梦的色彩开始褪色,随着形状变得模糊和不清晰,就像雨中的水彩。艾琳看了看她的左边,又看了看她的右边。她的朋友们在梦中创造的版本仍然陪伴着她,温柔地微笑着。

 

“Well. That was sure different,” Erin said. And then a giggling dream-Pinkie smacked her in the face with a coconut-cream pie.

 

“嗯。这当然是不同的,”艾琳说。然后一个咯咯笑的小手指用椰子奶油派打了她的脸。

 

~~* Raka *~~~ ~ * Raka * ~ ~

 

“So, this is nice.” Raka looked around her friend and colleague's office. Various small items, mostly touristy stuff, were displayed prominently on bookshelves, sharing space with what looked like scrapbooks and family albums. Photos of grinning children and young adults beamed at her from every wall, and even from the desk itself. She quirked an eyebrow at her friend. “Very homey. Very you.”

 

“所以,这很好。雷卡环顾了一下朋友和同事的办公室。书架上摆放着各种各样的小物件,大多是旅游用品,和一些类似剪贴簿和家庭相册的东西放在一起。每面墙上都有孩子和年轻人对着她微笑的照片,甚至办公桌上也有。她对她的朋友皱了一下眉。“非常的温馨舒适。很你。”

 

Maggie Henson laughed and waved her hand. “Well, you know how it is. I spend so much time in the office, it might as well be my second home.” She leaned forward and said, “I wasn’t expecting you to show up the very next day after I called you. Didn’t I mention that we can’t open the gate to Harmony for another month?”

 

玛吉·汉森笑着挥挥手。“嗯,这你是知道的。我在办公室里待的时间太长了,简直就像我的第二个家。她身体前倾,说道:“我没想到你会在我给你打电话的第二天出现。”我不是说过我们不能在一个月之内打开通向和谐的大门吗?”

 

“Maggie, I have to be honest with you.” Raka cast a wary glance over her shoulder, as if someone might be listening in, before leaning in and stage-whispering, “I’ve grown to hate being on the road.”

 

“玛吉,我必须对你说实话。瑞卡小心翼翼地瞥了一眼她的肩膀,好像有人在偷听,然后探进身子,在舞台上低语:“我已经开始讨厌在路上了。”

 

Maggie gasped with a look of mock-horror on her face. “No! Not Raka ‘Rockstar’ Nayar, the globetrotting biologist!” She clasped her hands together under her chin. “Say it ain’t so!”

 

玛吉倒抽了一口冷气,脸上带着恐惧的表情。“不!不是“摇滚明星”拉卡·纳亚尔,周游世界的生物学家!她双手在下巴底下合在一起。“说不是这样!”

 

Raka giggled like she hadn’t done in a long time, at least not since she’d last shared an apartment with Maggie during grad school. Of course her oldest friend would still want to use that stupid old nickname.

 

瑞卡咯咯地笑了起来,就像她很长一段时间没有这样做过一样,至少从她上次在研究生院与玛吉合租公寓时就没有这样做过。当然,她的老朋友仍然想用那个愚蠢的老绰号。

 

“Well, I thought the sooner I came out, the sooner I could fix all the mistakes in the mission plan,” Raka replied, leaning back with a smirk on her face. “Is my team assembled, yet?”

 

“嗯,我想我越早出来,我就能越快修正任务计划中的所有错误。”拉卡回答道,向后靠了靠,脸上带着一丝得意的笑容。“我的团队集合好了吗?”

 

“Most of them work right here,” Maggie replied. “So, yes. We’re interviewing a few geologists, meteorologists, and some other specialists. We’ll also need some medical staff, security and engineers.”

 

“大多数人就在这里工作,”玛吉回答说。“所以,是的。我们正在采访一些地质学家、气象学家和其他一些专家。我们还需要一些医务人员、保安和工程师。”

 

Raka raised an eyebrow. “Security?”

 

瑞卡扬起了眉毛。“安全?”

 

“There’s life on the planet.” Maggie shrugged. “No signs of civilization so far. No structures, no radio transmissions, nothing. But that doesn’t mean that the local wildlife can’t be dangerous. So, yes. Actual security, with actual guns.”

 

“地球上有生命。”玛吉耸了耸肩。“到目前为止还没有文明的迹象。没有结构,没有无线电传输,什么都没有。但这并不意味着当地的野生动物就不会有危险。所以,是的。真正的安全,真正的枪支。”

 

“You know how I feel about that.” Raka’s eyes narrowed as she folded her arms across her chest. “We shouldn’t be going armed to a new world.”

 

“你知道我的感受。瑞卡眯起眼睛,双臂交叉放在胸前。“我们不应该带着武器去一个新世界。”

 

“We shouldn’t be going helpless, either,” Maggie countered. She sighed and laid her hands flat on her desk. “It’s not up for negotiation. I’m not going to have my best friend end up in the belly of some alien carnivore.”

 

“我们也不应该束手无策,”玛吉反驳道。她叹了口气,双手平放在书桌上。“这不是谈判的问题。我可不想让我最好的朋友死在外星食肉动物的肚子里。”

 

“Fine.” Raka rolled her eyes. “Though, you have to admit, that would at least be an interesting way to go.”

 

“很好。瑞卡翻了个白眼。“不过,你必须承认,这至少是一种有趣的方式。”

 

They both chuckled at that, and for a while the conversation lapsed into a comfortable silence. Then Raka noticed a look come over her friend’s face and sighed, knowing what was coming next. She’d been expecting this, but that didn’t mean she had to like it. Especially not from Maggie.

 

听了这话,他们俩都咯咯地笑起来。有一会儿,谈话陷入了令人舒服的沉默。这时,瑞卡注意到她朋友脸上的表情,叹了口气,知道接下来会发生什么。她已经预料到了,但这并不意味着她必须喜欢它。尤其是麦琪。

 

“I’m sorry about this, Raka, but you know I have to ask,” Maggie asked in preparation for the inevitable question. “How’s your health these days?”

 

“我很抱歉,瑞卡,但你知道我必须问,”玛吉在准备这个不可避免的问题时问道。“你最近身体怎么样?”

 

Raka grinned at her through clenched teeth. At least Maggie had the decency to look apologetic about it, rather than pitying.

 

拉卡咬牙切齿地对她咧嘴一笑。至少麦琪还有点礼貌,对这件事表现出了歉意,而不是怜悯。

 

“I’m fine, Maggie,” she said. “Full remission, currently cancer-free.”

 

“我很好,玛吉,”她说。“完全缓解,目前没有癌症。”

 

“Right,” Maggie said, nodding. “It’s just that—”

 

“对,”玛吉点点头说。“只是——”

 

“For goodness’ sake, Maggie, I’ve gotten this from everyone I know.” She scowled across the desk at her friend. “Yes, I’ve lost a lot of weight. Yes, I look awful. But I’m fine. Really.”

 

“看在上帝的份上,玛吉,我认识的每个人都这样对我说。她隔着桌子怒视着她的朋友。“是的,我瘦了很多。是的,我看起来很糟糕。但我很好。真的。”

 

Maggie frowned right back at her. “That’s not what I was going to say.”

 

麦琪也对她皱起了眉头。“这不是我要说的。”

 

Raka leaned back, eying her warily. “Oh?”

 

瑞卡向后靠了靠,小心翼翼地看着她。“哦?”

 

“What I was going to say is that we have an Ascent facility here. You may have heard of it?”

 

“我想说的是,我们这里有一个上升设施。你可能听说过吧?”

 

Maggie grinned at Raka’s suddenly-sheepish expression. “Oh.”

 

玛姬对着瑞卡突然胆怯的表情咧嘴一笑。“哦。”

 

“Yeah.” Maggie folded her arms and leaned back, looking altogether too smug. “We could use our Ascent facility to double-check and make sure you’re fine, and correct any problems before we send you out into the field.”

 

“是的。玛吉抱起双臂,向后一靠,看上去太得意了。“我们可以使用上升设备进行二次检查,确保你安然无恙,并在派你前往现场之前纠正任何问题。”

 

“Oh,” Raka repeated. “Well. How long would that take?”

 

“哦,”Raka重复。“嗯。需要多长时间?”

 

Maggie grimaced. “It’s an older facility. We can’t do targeted fixes like the new ones. We’d have to put you under for a week, maybe longer.”

 

玛吉扮了个鬼脸。“这是一个老旧的设施。我们不能像新的那样做有针对性的修复。我们得把你关一个星期,也许更久。”

 

“Oh. Hmm.” Raka considered this for a moment before shaking her head. “No, let’s hold off until I get back. I want to make sure we have plenty of time for planning.”

 

“哦。嗯。瑞卡想了一会儿,然后摇了摇头。“不,等我回来再说吧。我想确保我们有足够的时间来做计划。”

 

Maggie leaned forward in her chair, eyebrows knitting. “Raka, we have a month. Over a month, actually. There’s plenty of time.”

 

麦琪靠在椅子上,皱着眉头。“瑞卡,我们还有一个月的时间。实际上是一个多月。有的是时间。”

 

Raka laughed and shook her head. “Maggie, I know you don’t go out into the field much, but you have to trust me. There’s never enough time for planning.”

 

瑞卡笑了,摇了摇头。“玛吉,我知道你不常去野外,但你必须相信我。做计划的时间总是不够的。”

 

“Fine, fine.” Maggie held up her hands in a gesture of surrender. “How about we start with an introduction to some of your soon-to-be teammates?”

 

“好,很好。玛吉举起双手,做出投降的姿势。“我们先介绍一下你的一些准队友怎么样?”

 

“Oh, yes!” Raka sat up eagerly, her eyes sparkling. “You’re sending a unicorn with me, is that right?”

 

“哦,是的!瑞卡急切地坐起来,眼睛闪闪发光。“你送我一只独角兽,对吗?”

 

“Just the one, though there will be a team of ponies from Canterlot as well. But Spectral Charm will be reporting directly to you.”

 

“只有一匹,不过也会有一群坎特洛特来的小马。但光谱魅力将直接向你报告。”

 

“Oh, I can’t wait to meet him!” Raka clapped her hands excitedly. “I bet he’s wonderful!”

 

“哦,我等不及要见他了!”瑞卡兴奋地拍着手。“我敢打赌他一定棒极了!”

 

Maggie’s face froze for a second before thawing into a careful smile. “Oh, he’s something else, all right. Let’s go and meet him, shall we?”

 

玛吉的脸僵住了一秒钟,然后慢慢地露出了一丝微笑。“哦,他是另一个人,好吧。我们去见见他,好吗?”

 

~~* Twilight *~~黄昏~ ~ * * ~ ~

 

It was early enough in the morning that the regular hustle and bustle of Ponyville’s streets was just getting started. Twilight stifled a yawn, momentarily regretting the time she’d spent the night before perusing the thick and densely illustrated tome Fantastical Flora and Fauna before finally turning in. It had been a fascinating book, but right at that moment she’d rather have had the extra hours of sleep.

 

早上的时间已经够早了,波尼维尔街上熙熙攘攘的景象才刚刚开始。《暮光之城》让她打了个呵欠,暂时后悔了一下,在上床睡觉前,她花了一晚上的时间阅读了厚厚的、插图丰富的《神奇动植物》(Fantastical Flora and Fauna)。这是一本很吸引人的书,但就在那一刻,她宁愿多睡几个小时。

 

Pinkie Pie was apparently having no such trouble, seeing as she was bouncing happily along next to her while humming a song that was entirely too chipper for that time of day, at least as far as Twilight was concerned. Pinkie had stopped by the library a half-hour earlier, and only the basket full of freshly-baked warm muffins she’d been carrying for breakfast had stopped Twilight from grumpily suggesting that she come back in an hour or two. Or possibly even three.

 

Pinkie Pie显然没有这样的问题,因为她在她身边快乐地蹦蹦跳跳,哼唱着一首在一天的这个时候,至少在《暮光之城》里,显得太爽快的歌曲。Pinkie在半小时前去了图书馆,只有装满刚出炉的热松饼的篮子阻止了Twilight的怒气冲冲地暗示她一两个小时后回来。或者甚至是三个。

 

The muffins had made a pretty good breakfast, all things considered. There were still a good half-dozen left in the basket that Pinkie was somehow managing to balance on top of her head as she hopped along.

 

从各方面来看,松饼已经是一顿很好的早餐了。篮子里还剩好几个,小萍跳着走的时候,不知怎么地用头顶着平衡着。

 

Twilight’s admittedly bleary mind wandered its way back to the subject at hoof. “So, Fluttershy actually refused to take the money?”

 

暮光之城公认的迷糊的思绪又回到了这个话题上。“这么说,弗立特希真的拒绝拿钱了?”

 

That got Pinkie to stop bouncing. She landed with a thud on all four hooves and started walking beside her with a frown on her face.

 

这让小手指停止跳动。她砰的一声四蹄着地,皱着眉头走在她身边。

 

“She sure did,” Pinkie said, her ears drooping. “Something about it being a gift from Sunflower and she couldn’t take money for it, now.”

 

“她当然记得,”平基说,她的耳朵耷拉着。“这是向日葵给她的礼物,她现在不能收钱。”

 

“But the four of us agreed,” Twilight said, frustrated. “We’d all chip in and get Erin a feather-care set. And I know AJ and Rainbow Dash would chip in, too, if we asked them.” Then what Pinkie said sunk in. “Wait, she said it was a gift from Erin?”

 

“但是我们四个同意了。”暮光沮丧地说。“我们都会出钱给艾琳买一套羽毛护理套装。我知道如果我们邀请AJ和Rainbow Dash,他们也会出钱的。”这时,小平说的话就被她理解了。“等等,她说这是艾琳送的礼物?”

 

“Yup.” Pinkie shook her head. “I didn’t get it, either. Dangit, I’m usually the one who’s random, not Fluttershy!”

 

“是的。小品摇了摇头。“我也不明白。当当,我通常是随机的,而不是飘忽不定的!”

 

Twilight shook her head. “Well, we can talk to her later, I guess. After we check on Erin, of course.”

 

暮光之城摇了摇头。“好吧,我想我们以后可以和她谈谈。当然是在我们检查完艾琳之后。”

 

Pinkie’s face returned to its normal sunny expression. “Of course!”

 

小粉的脸恢复了正常的开朗的表情。“当然!”

 

They walked, or in Pinkie’s case, bounced, until Erin’s house came into view, the sight of which caused Twilight to feel a small spark of satisfaction. She’d been lucky to find the place for her friend, and Erin’s obvious appreciation of her new living space had really done wonders for Twilight’s spirits.

 

他们走着,或者用平基的话说,跳着,直到埃琳的房子出现在眼前,这一景象使暮光之城感到一丝满足。她很幸运为她的朋友找到了这个地方,艾琳对她的新生活空间的明显赞赏真的为暮光之城的精神创造了奇迹。

 

The pair of them let themselves through the gate and then knocked on the door. A few seconds later, Erin opened the doorway, eyes widening in surprise as she saw the two of them.

 

他们俩进了大门,然后敲了敲门。几秒钟后,艾琳打开了门,当她看到他们俩时,惊讶地睁大了眼睛。

 

“Hey, guys!” Erin said as she broke out into a wide smile.

 

“嘿,伙计们!艾琳说着,突然露出了灿烂的笑容。

 

“Hiya, Sunflower!” Pinkie said. “Can we come in? We brought presents and muffins!”

 

“你好,向日葵!”平基说。“我们能进来吗?”我们带来了礼物和松饼!”

 

“Housewarming gifts, actually,” Twilight added with a smile. “Just some things we thought you could use.”

 

暮光之城笑着补充道:“其实是乔迁礼物。”“只是一些我们认为你可以用的东西。”

 

“Of course you can come in!” Erin stood aside to make room. “Please excuse the mess, though.”

 

“你当然可以进来!”艾琳站到一边,腾出地方。“不过,请原谅这里太乱了。”

 

“Oh, I’m sure it’s not too…” Twilight trailed off, staring at the boxes, some of them open with their contents scattered across the floor. “Wow.”

 

“哦,我相信它不太……”暮光慢慢地消失了,盯着那些盒子,有些已经打开,里面的东西散落在地板上。“哇。”

 

“I know.” Erin was clearly embarrassed, judging by how she ducked her head and scuffed a hoof along the floor. “I’ve been looking for something.”

 

“我知道。艾林显然很尴尬,看她是如何低下头,用蹄子在地板上蹭来蹭去的。“我一直在找东西。”

 

“Do you need any help?” Pinkie asked as she passed the muffin basket over. “I’m a great finder!”

 

“你需要帮忙吗?”Pinkie把松饼篮递过去的时候问道。“我是一个伟大的发现者!”

 

“Oh! No, Pinkie, that’s okay!” Erin said with a wide-eyed, frantic grin. “I actually just found what I was looking for. And I’m glad you’re here, actually, because they’re presents for you guys!”

 

“哦!不,小粉,没关系!埃琳瞪大了眼睛,疯狂地笑着说。“我真的找到了我要找的东西。我很高兴你们能来,因为这是给你们的礼物!”

 

Pinkie gasped. “We get presents, too?”

 

小指气喘吁吁地说。“我们也收到礼物?”

 

“Yes!” Erin’s eyes twinkled as she laughed. “But first, can I get you guys anything? I have all sorts of goodies left over from last night’s party. Oh! And I also found a care package my mom somehow managed to sneak into my stuff. It’s got a bunch of cookies in it.”

 

“是啊!艾琳笑了,眼睛闪闪发光。“但首先,我能给你们拿点什么吗?”我有昨晚聚会剩下的各种各样的好东西。哦!我还发现了一个我妈妈不知怎么弄到我东西里的护理包。里面有一堆饼干。”

 

“Ooh, cookies!” Pinkie’s ears perked up. “What kind?”

 

“哦,饼干!小粉的耳朵竖起来了。“什么?”

 

“Well, there were chocolate chip, of course,” Erin said.

 

“嗯,当然有巧克力片,”艾琳说。

 

“Naturally,” Pinkie said with a sage nod.

 

“当然,”小平基明智地点点头说。

 

“There are also some peanut-butter ones, some sugar cookies, and some snickerdoodles.”

 

“还有花生酱、甜饼干和甜饼干。”

 

“That sounds great!” Pinkie said. Then she frowned and shot Erin a sidelong glance. “What’s a snickerdoodle?”

 

“那听起来不错!”平基说。然后她皱起眉头,斜睨了艾琳一眼。“什么是snickerdoodle ?”

 

Twilight looked at Pinkie in confusion. “Um, Pinkie?” she started to say.

 

暮光困惑地看着小粉。“嗯,小指吗?她开始说。

 

Erin tilted her head at Pinkie. “You’ve never had a snickerdoodle?”

 

埃琳把头歪向小指。“你从来没有偷笑过?”

 

“Hmm… I don’t think so! What is it?”

 

“嗯……我不这样认为!”这是什么?”

 

Erin grinned at her. “Only the best kind of cookie ever! I’ll go get you one!” She trotted off into her kitchen, calling over her shoulder, “Twilight, do you want one too?”

 

艾琳冲她咧嘴一笑。“这是有史以来最好的饼干!”我去给你拿一个!她小跑着进了厨房,回头喊道:“暮光之城,你也想要一个吗?”

 

“Um, sure?” Twilight said uncertainly.

 

“嗯,确定吗?暮光不确定地说。

 

“Okay, one minute!” Erin said as she disappeared through the doorway.

 

“好吧,一分钟!艾琳说着,消失在门口。

 

Twilight turned to Pinkie Pie, who was grinning hugely. “Pinkie, I’m pretty sure you know what a snickerdoodle is.”

 

暮光转向露齿而笑的小粉派。“小粉,我敢肯定你知道snickerdoodle是什么。”

 

Pinkie fluttered her eyelashes innocently. “Oh?”

 

小手指无辜地眨着睫毛。“哦?”

 

“Yes,” Twilight said with a frown. “I’m positive. I think you’ve even made them before.”

 

“是的。”暮光城皱着眉头说。“我是积极的。我想你以前也做过。”

 

“I have?”

 

“我有吗?”

 

“Yes. In fact, there’s even a mare in town named ‘Snickerdoodle’. She has a snickerdoodle for a cutie mark.”

 

“是的。事实上,镇上甚至有一匹叫“Snickerdoodle”的母马。她有一个snickerdoodle作为可爱的标志。”

 

“Really?”

 

“真的吗?”

 

“Yes!” Twilight stomped a hoof. “How can you not… remember…”

 

“是啊!暮光之城跺着蹄子。“你怎么能……不记得……”

 

She trailed off, looking at her friend’s face. There was that grin, of course. But now it had been joined by a mischievous glint in Pinkie’s eyes.

 

她看着朋友的脸,声音渐渐低下去了。当然,那是咧嘴一笑。但现在,小粉的眼睛里又闪现出一丝调皮的光芒。

 

“Oh…” Things started to click in Twilight’s mind. “Oh!” She cast a wary glance at the entryway to the kitchen, where the sounds of dishware clinking around could be heard. She leaned towards Pinkie and whispered, “Is this a prank? Are we playing a prank on Erin?”

 

“哦……”事情开始在暮光之城的脑海中闪现。“哦!她机警地瞥了一眼厨房的入口,在那里可以听到餐具叮当作响的声音。她向小手指探过身子,小声说:“这是恶作剧吗?”我们是在捉弄艾琳吗?”

 

“I’m going to be honest, Twilight,” Pinkie Pie said with a smirk. “I have no idea what you’re doing.” The big grin erupted on her face again. “But, yes, I’m just playing a little joke.”

 

“我要实话实说,暮光之城。”“我不知道你在干什么。她脸上又露出了笑容。“但是,是的,我只是开个小玩笑。”

 

“Oh, goodie!” Twilight clapped her hooves together and giggled. “Can I help?”

 

“哦,好呀! !暮光之城拍了拍她的蹄子,咯咯地笑了起来。“要我帮忙吗?”

 

Pinkie's eyes narrowed for for a moment, her mouth setting in an even line. Twilight stood rigidly as Pinkie studied her, presumably judging her readiness to assist her with the pranking. When Pinkie's face suddenly erupted into a full-blown smile, Twilight sagged with relief.

 

小粉的眼睛眯了一会儿,她的嘴排成了一条平直的线。暮光之城僵硬地站在那里,小粉打量着她,大概是在判断她是否准备好帮助她搞恶作剧。当小粉的脸上突然绽放出笑容时,《暮光之城》松了一口气。

 

"You sure can, Twilight!" Pinkie replied with a grin. Her twinkling blue eyes narrowed as she leaned in to whisper conspiratorially into Twilight’s ear. “You have to make absolutely sure you relax and act casual. It’s really super-duper important that Sunflower doesn’t catch on, or else the whole joke is ruined.”

 

“你当然可以,暮光之城!”小品笑着回答。她斜着身子,凑到暮光的耳边,诡秘地说着什么,她那双闪烁的蓝眼睛眯了起来。“你必须绝对确保自己很放松,表现得很随意。《向日葵》不流行真的非常重要,否则整个笑话就毁了。”

 

“Right!” Twilight nodded vigorously. “Oh! Here she comes!” Twilight couldn’t help a little hop of excitement at being on the giving side of the joke for once.

 

“正确!暮光有力地点点头。“哦!她来了!《暮光之城》第一次站在了搞笑的一边,不禁有点兴奋。

 

Pinkie’s eyes widened. She whispered fiercely, “Twilight, remember to act casual!”

 

小指瞪大了眼。她凶狠地低声说:“暮光之城,记得表现得随意些!”

 

“Right!” Twilight took a deep breath and let it out, trying to settle her nerves. “Right.”

 

“正确!暮光深深地吸了口气,把它吐了出来,试图让她的神经平静下来。“对的。”

 

Twilight quickly put on a casual smile as Erin trotted back into the living room with a plate loaded with cookies balanced on her back.

 

艾琳背着一个装满饼干的盘子,小跑着回到客厅,暮光之城很快就露出了一个随意的微笑。

 

“Well, here we… go?” Erin stopped and cocked her head as she stared right at Twilight. “Everything okay, Twilight?”

 

“好了,我们……走吧?”艾琳停下脚步,抬起头,盯着暮色。“一切都好,《暮光之城》吗?”

 

“What?” Twilight felt a moment of panic at the thought that Erin might have already figured out the prank. She shot a frantic glance over at Pinkie, who widened her own eyes back at her. She looked back at Erin and put even more effort into making her smile look casual. “Why would anything be wrong?”

 

“什么?暮光之城想到艾琳可能已经想出了这个恶作剧,感到一阵恐慌。她狂乱地瞥了小平一眼,小平也瞪大了眼睛望着她。她回头看了看艾琳,花了更大的力气让她的笑容看起来很随意。“为什么会出问题呢?”

 

“Well, it’s just… Never mind.” Erin shook her head. “Not a big deal. Anyway, snickerdoodles! Here you go.”

 

“嗯,这只是……没关系。艾琳摇了摇头。“没什么大不了的。总之,snickerdoodles !在这里你走。”

 

Twilight breathed a sigh of relief as Erin, apparently still fooled, reached around and pulled the plate off of her back with her teeth. She sat down, transferring the plate to her upturned hooves and holding it out so that the other two ponies could select one of the golden brown cookies. Twilight nabbed one with her magic and took a small bite.

 

暮光如释重负地松了口气,艾琳显然还在被愚弄,她四处摸索,用牙齿把盘子从背上扯了下来。她坐下来,把盘子转到倒立的马蹄子上,举在手里,让另外两匹小马可以从中挑选一块金黄色的饼干。暮光之城用她的魔法抓住了一个,咬了一小口。

 

“Mmm!” Twilight was too distracted by the prank to even notice the taste of the cookie aside from a vague sense of something cinnamon. “This is really good!”

 

“嗯!暮光之城被这个恶作剧搞得心烦意乱,除了隐约感觉到一点肉桂的味道外,根本没注意到饼干的味道。“这真是太好了!”

 

“Your mom is a pretty good baker.” Pinkie was licking her lips. Judging by Erin’s shocked expression, Twilight could only assume that Pinkie had eaten the whole thing in one bite. “Can I have another?”

 

“你妈妈是一个很好的面包师。小粉在舔她的嘴唇。从Erin震惊的表情来看,暮光之城只能推测Pinkie一口就把整只猫吃掉了。“我能再喝一杯吗?”

 

“Oh, um. Sure.” Erin held out the plate again so that Pinkie could take another cookie. Then she looked at Twilight and asked, “Are you sure you’re okay?”

 

“哦,嗯。确定。艾琳又把盘子递过去,好让平基再拿一块饼干。然后她看着暮光之城问道:“你确定你没事吗?”

 

As far as Twilight could tell, the look on Erin’s face was one of suspicion. With a sense of dread, and with a few strands of her mane breaking away from her normal straight style, she forced an even more casual smile towards her friend. “Yes, of course! Why wouldn’t I be, ha ha?”

 

在《暮光之城》看来,艾琳脸上的表情是一种怀疑。带着一种恐惧感,几缕鬃毛打破了她正常的直发风格,她强迫自己对朋友露出更加随意的微笑。“是的,当然!我为什么不呢,哈哈?”

 

Pinkie snickered next to her, and it was all Twilight could do not to start laughing too. This prank was getting really hard to maintain!

 

小粉在她身边窃笑,暮光也忍不住笑了起来。这个恶作剧越来越难以维持了!

 

“It’s just… well, if you need the bathroom, it’s right over—”

 

“只是……好吧,如果你需要上厕所,就在——”

 

Erin wasn’t able to finish the sentence because Pinkie fell on the floor shrieking with laughter. The dam burst in Twilight, and she started laughing, too. Mostly because of the successful prank, but also in relief that it was Pinkie who broke first. Erin just gave them a bemused look with an uncertain smile, which made Twilight laugh even harder.

 

艾琳没能说完这句话,因为小手指笑得倒在地板上尖叫。大坝在暮色中决堤了,她也笑了起来。这主要是因为恶作剧成功了,但也让人松了一口气的是,是小平先开的玩笑。艾琳只是困惑地看了他们一眼,脸上带着不确定的微笑,这让《暮光之城》笑得更厉害了。

 

“Um, guys?” Erin said as the laughter started to die down. “Everything okay?”

 

“嗯,伙计们?当笑声渐渐消失时,艾琳说。“一切都好吗?”

 

Twilight’s ribs were aching from laughing so hard but she still managed to say, “Yes! It was a prank! We actually knew what snickerdoodles were this whole time! We so got you!”

 

暮光之城笑得肋骨都疼了,但她还是勉强说了声:“是的!那是个恶作剧!我们其实一直都知道snickerdoodles是什么!我们抓住你了!”

 

For some reason, this set Pinkie off into a new round of guffaws. Twilight giggled, though she wasn’t really sure what had set Pinkie off again. Erin joined in, finally getting the joke. Or, at least, that’s what Twilight thought at first.

 

出于某种原因,这让小品陷入了新一轮的狂笑。暮光之城咯咯地笑了起来,尽管她不确定是什么又把小粉激怒了。艾琳也加入进来,终于听懂了这个笑话。或者,至少,这是暮光之城最初的想法。

 

“That,” Erin said, wiping a tear away from an eye with a fetlock, “was almost too lame to even be a prank.” Then she grinned at Twilight and added, “That look on your face… I thought you were constipated!”

 

“那个,”埃林说,用fetlock擦去眼睛上的一滴眼泪,“太差劲了,连恶作剧都算不上。然后她在暮色中咧嘴一笑,补充说:“你脸上的表情……我还以为你便秘了呢!”

 

"I wasn't—" Twilight started to say.

 

“我没有——”暮光之城开始说。

 

She was interrupted when Pinkie whooped with renewed laughter, rolling onto her back and kicking all four legs in the air. Erin joined in, laughing so hard that her legs went a little wobbly. Twilight was the odd one out, now, chuckling along but confused.

 

她被打断时,小手指又发出了一声大笑,仰面朝天地打滚,四条腿都在空中乱踢。艾琳也笑了起来,笑得她的腿都有点摇晃了。现在,暮光是个古怪的家伙,一边咯咯地笑着,一边感到困惑。

 

After a minute or two, the latest round of laughter started dying down.

 

一两分钟后,最新一轮的笑声开始消失。

 

“Thanks, Twilight.” Pinkie let out a happy sigh while still lying on her back. “Considering it was such a silly idea for a prank, you helped it turn out so much better than I expected.”

 

“谢谢,《暮光之城》。Pinkie躺在床上,开心地叹了口气。“考虑到这是一个愚蠢的恶作剧的想法,你帮助它比我预期的要好得多。”

 

“Wait, I don’t understand.” Twilight looked back and forth between the other two mares, feeling totally lost. “How was it a silly idea? We got her!”

 

“等等,我不明白。暮光在另外两只母马之间来回张望,感觉完全迷失了。“这怎么会是一个愚蠢的想法呢?”我们给她!”

 

Pinkie looked up at her, snorted with laughter and then groaned, holding her ribs. “No more, Twilight. My tummy hurts from laughing too hard!”

 

小品抬起头看着她,笑得哼了一声,然后抱着她的肋骨呻吟起来。”,《暮光之城》。我笑得肚子疼!”

 

Erin was looking at her with an entirely too amused expression for somepony who’d just had an awesome prank pulled on her.

 

艾琳看着她,脸上带着一种非常有趣的表情,就像一个刚刚跟她开了个大玩笑的人。

 

Twilight shook her head, confused. “I don’t get it.”

 

暮光城困惑地摇了摇头。“我不明白。”

 

Any attempt to gain further understanding of the current situation was complicated by her friends' renewed laughter.

 

她的朋友们重新发出了笑声,使她进一步了解当前形势的任何尝试都变得复杂起来。

 

~~* Luna *~~~ ~ * Luna * ~ ~

 

Princess Luna, Warden of the Night, Guardian of Dreams and the Regent of the Moon, was assaulted very nearly the moment she opened the door to the Royal Sisters’ private dining hall. She had been planning on a hearty meal and a calm discussion with her sister before retiring for the day. What she got instead was a small green alicorn colt dodging between her legs to reach the hallway behind her, followed a moment later by the colt’s beleaguered nursemaid slamming into her with a startled cry.

 

卢娜公主,夜之守护,梦之守护,月之摄政者,几乎在她打开皇家姐妹的私人餐厅的门的那一刻就被攻击了。她一直打算在今天就寝前饱餐一顿,并和姐姐平静地讨论一番。她得到的是一只绿色的小艾里康小马,它从她两腿间闪开,跑到她身后的走廊上,片刻之后,那被围攻的小马保姆惊叫一声,向她猛扑过来。

 

Luna blinked as she was knocked half a step back. The mare who had run into her staggered backwards in a protracted fall that ended up with her finally landing on her rump. The nursemaid, a light golden unicorn mare named Honey Heart, shook her head before looking at what she’d run into.

 

卢娜眨了眨眼,被撞了半步。那匹撞到她的母马踉踉跄跄地向后倒去,拖了很长时间,最后倒在了她的屁股上。保姆是一匹名叫“甜心”的淡金色独角兽母马,她摇了摇头,看着自己撞上了什么。

 

When she saw that she had, in fact, run full-tilt into Princess Luna, Honey Heart’s eyes bulged as she gasped and scrambled to her hooves.

 

当她看到自己实际上是全速冲向了卢娜公主时,甜心的眼睛鼓了起来,她喘着气,用蹄子爬着。

 

“A thousand pardons, Princess!” Honey Heart bowed with her muzzle very nearly on the floor. “The young prince is being… rambunctious this morning.” With a grimace, she added, “As usual.”

 

“请原谅我一千次,公爵小姐!“甜心,”她的嘴几乎贴在地板上。“今天早晨,年轻的王子……胡闹起来了。她做了个鬼脸,接着说,“像往常一样。”

 

Luna rotated an ear, catching the sound of the giggling colt as he bolted recklessly down the hallway. A moment later, Prince Verdant squawked indignantly as Luna lifted him in her magic and began floating him back towards the dining hall.

 

卢娜转了转耳朵,听到了小马不顾一切地冲进走廊时发出的咯咯笑声。过了一会儿,当卢娜用魔法把他举起来,开始把他飘回餐厅时,弗尔顿王子愤怒地尖叫起来。

 

“It is of no concern,” Luna said as she brought the prince back towards the doorway. “I believe this is what you were looking for?”

 

“这无关紧要。”卢娜把王子带回门口时说。“我想这就是你要找的东西吧?”

 

“No!” shouted the somewhat-less-than-regal prince. “No no no!”

 

“不!不太像帝王的王子喊道。“不不不!”

 

It was one of only a small number of words that he knew, though new words were appearing with startling regularity. Some, apparently, he had learned from his guards, which had prompted Celestia to pronounce that certain words and phrases were not allowed to be used near the young prince.

 

这是他所知道的为数不多的几个单词之一,尽管新单词的出现具有惊人的规律性。有些显然是他从他的侍卫那里学来的,这就促使塞莱斯蒂宣布某些词语和短语是不允许在年轻的王子身边使用的。

 

“Thank you, your Highness,” Honey Heart said with a bow. “The young prince has been quite a—”

 

“谢谢你,殿下。”甜心鞠了一躬。“年轻的王子已经相当——”

 

“Butt!” Verdant cried out, demonstrating yet another word from his ever-expanding vocabulary.

 

“屁股!弗登斯叫道,从他不断扩大的词汇量中又举出一个词来。

 

Honey Heart froze with a very cautious look descending over her features. “I was going to say ‘challenge’.”

 

甜心的心僵住了,一种非常谨慎的目光从她的脸上掠过。“我想说的是‘挑战’。”

 

She cleared her throat and, horn lighting up, took the little prince from Luna. Verdant’s legs began galloping in midair while his little wings flapped crazily. Once again, he demonstrated his unhappiness by unleashing the most terrible invectives in his vocabulary.

 

她清了清嗓子,点燃了号角,把小王子从卢娜身边带走了。青翠的腿开始在半空中飞奔,他的小翅膀疯狂地扇动着。他再一次用他词汇中最可怕的咒骂来表达他的不快。

 

“Butt! No! Butt!”

 

“屁股!不!屁股!”

 

“That is language quite unbecoming a prince,” Luna admonished.

 

“那是与王子身份极不相称的语言。”卢娜警告说。

 

This, apparently, was when Prince Verdant first became aware of the fact that there was another pony involved in his re-incarceration. He left off glaring at his nursemaid and instead gaped at Luna.

 

显然,这是当王子弗顿第一次意识到,有另一个小马参与了他的再次监禁的事实。他不再对保姆怒目而视,而是目瞪口呆地望着卢娜。

 

“Auntie Wu!” he shrieked directly into his nursemaid’s left ear.

 

“吴阿姨!他对着保姆的左耳尖叫起来。

 

Honey Heart flinched and folded down her ears. Luna offered her a sympathetic smile before addressing her nephew.

 

甜心畏缩了一下,垂下了耳朵。卢娜向她露出同情的微笑,然后对侄子说。

 

“Good morning. How are you today?”

 

“早上好。你今天好吗?”

 

“Good. Hug!” Verdant’s struggles ceased as he flung his forelimbs out.

 

“很好。拥抱!弗尔登斯猛地伸出前肢,停止了挣扎。

 

Luna arched an eyebrow at him. “What do we say when we want something?”

 

卢娜对他扬起眉毛。“当我们想要某样东西的时候,我们该说什么?”

 

Prince Verdant looked puzzled for a long moment. Then he broke into a sunny smile. “Please, hug?”

 

弗唐太斯公爵困惑了好一会儿。然后他露出了阳光般的笑容。“请,拥抱吗?”

 

“Very good, nephew.” Luna offered him a gentle smile. She leaned in and, while he was still floating in Honey Heart’s magical grip, gave him a gentle hug and graciously endured a sloppy kiss on the cheek. The guards on either side of the doorway maintained an air of stoic indifference regarding Luna’s en-slobbering, much to their credit.

 

“很好,侄子。卢娜给了他一个温柔的微笑。她身体前倾,趁他还在“甜心”神奇的怀抱里漂浮的时候,给了他一个温柔的拥抱,然后在他的脸颊上优雅地吻了一下。门道两边的守卫对卢娜流口水的行为保持着一种坚忍的淡漠态度,这是他们的功劳。

 

Honey Heart bowed again. “Thank you for catching him, Princess. He always gets a little squirrely during breakfast, and he is quite the escape artist.”

 

甜心又鞠了一躬。“谢谢你救了他,公主。吃早饭的时候,他总是有点儿局促不安,他是一个善于逃避现实的人。”

 

“We can’t have that, can we?” Luna said as she finally entered the dining hall fully and shut the door behind her. She put a serious look on her face. “Now, nephew. Are you going to finish your breakfast properly, like a big pony?”

 

“我们不能有那个,是吗?”卢娜终于走进餐厅,关上了身后的门。她一脸严肃。“现在,侄子。你会像匹大马驹一样把早餐吃完吗?”

 

His answer was the rarely-used “Yes!”

 

他的回答是:“是的!”

 

Verdant ran over and plumped himself down on a cushion next to the low breakfast table and remained sitting there with relative calm as his nursemaid began helping him with his breakfast. One of the palace servants, a mare in a nondescript black dress and white apron, took her breakfast order. As the servant left to prepare the meal, Luna turned to speak to Honey Heart as the mare tried to entice the young prince into eating.

 

弗登斯跑过来,扑通一声坐在矮桌子旁的垫子上,相对平静地坐在那里,他的保姆开始帮他准备早餐。一个侍从,一匹母马,穿着一件普通的黑衣服,系着一条白色的围裙,叫了一份早餐。当仆人离开去准备晚餐时,卢娜转身对“甜心”说话,母马试图引诱年轻的王子吃东西。

 

“My sister is once again too busy to join us?”

 

“我妹妹又太忙了,不能来吗?”

 

Luna hadn't intended to sound critical of her sister but, judging by the way the nursemaid's face tightened in apprehension, it seemed that her statement was taken that way. When Honey Heart answered, it was in the carefully measured tone that the palace staff seemed to use so often around her.

 

卢娜本来无意批评她姐姐,但从保姆因恐惧而绷紧的脸看,她的话似乎是这么说的。当甜心回答时,她的声音是小心翼翼的,就像皇宫的工作人员在她身边经常使用的那样。

 

“Yes, Highness. It seems Princess Celestia has a very full morning scheduled.”

 

“是的,殿下。看来塞莱斯蒂公主的日程安排得很满。”

 

“Hmph. What could be so important as to miss yet another mealtime with her sister and adopted son?”

 

“嗯。还有什么比错过和妹妹还有养子一起吃饭更重要的呢?”

 

Luna was certain that Honey Heart would know that she wasn’t just asking an idle question; in her duties as nursemaid, she was kept informed of Celestia’s schedule down to the minute, just in case she needed to reach her in the unlikely event of an emergency.

 

卢娜肯定甜心会知道她不是在问一个无聊的问题;在她作为保姆的职责中,她被告知Celestia的时间表,直到一分钟,以防她需要在不太可能发生的紧急情况下联系她。

 

“Ah, well.” Honey Heart fidgeted with her hooves. “Princess Celestia mentioned that she would be joining us after meeting with the Nobles' Council.”

 

“啊,好。甜心摆弄着她的蹄子。“塞莱斯蒂公主说她会在与贵族议会会面后加入我们。”

 

“I see.”

 

“我明白了。”

 

The mares lapsed into a silence, broken only by Verdant’s incessant babbling. The prince, though technically only a few months old, had the physical and emotional development of a colt at least two years in age, and all of the energy and curiosity of a roomful of kittens. Luna suppressed a smile as she looked at him, while Honey Heart did her level best to keep the young prince eating his breakfast.

 

母马陷入了沉默,只有弗旦斯的喋喋不休打破了沉默。从技术上讲,王子只有几个月大,但他的身体和情感发育却像一匹至少两岁的小马,充满了一屋子小猫的活力和好奇心。卢娜看着他,强忍住笑容,甜心尽她最大的努力让年轻的王子继续吃他的早餐。

 

“You are quite good with him,” Luna noted.

 

“你跟他相处得很好。”卢娜注意到。

 

The compliment made Honey Heart beam happily. “I can only do my best, Princess.” The humility implied in her statement at odds with her confident tone and level gaze. “I raised several of my own, after all. And the young prince is very much a joy to care for.”

 

这句恭维话使甜心高兴得眉开眼笑。“我只能尽力而为了,公主。在她的声明中隐含的谦卑与她自信的语气和平静的目光不一致。毕竟,我自己也养过几只。照顾年轻的王子是一件非常愉快的事。”

 

Luna winced as a large glob of airborne applesauce impacted with a wet splat against the side of the nursemaid’s head and began to ooze viscously down her neck.

 

卢娜吓了一跳,因为一大块苹果酱被湿漉漉的东西砸在保姆的脑袋上,开始黏黏地顺着脖子往下淌。

 

“Very much a joy,” Honey Heart repeated with a fixed smile.

 

“非常高兴,”甜心带着固定的微笑重复道。

 

Luna chuckled as the nursemaid used a linen napkin to clean herself off. A short time later, a unicorn wheeled the breakfast cart into the room. In addition to the bowl of sweet porridge she had asked for, Luna also chose several small tarts and some fresh fruit from a silver tray. The addition of a carafe of fresh apple juice rounded out the breakfast nicely.

 

保姆用一块亚麻餐巾把自己擦干净,卢娜咯咯地笑了起来。不一会儿,一只独角兽推着早餐车进了房间。除了她要的一碗甜粥,卢娜还从一个银盘子里挑了几个小馅饼和一些新鲜水果。一杯新鲜苹果汁的加入使早餐更加完美。

 

The servant bowed and began to back out of the room.

 

仆人鞠了一躬,开始往外走。

 

“Leave the cart, if you would,” Luna said. “Celestia may join us later.”

 

“离开马车,如果你愿意。”卢娜说。“塞莱斯蒂以后可能会加入我们。”

 

The servant bowed again. “Of course, Princess.”

 

仆人又鞠了一躬。“当然,公主。”

 

Once again, the only ponies left in the room were Luna, Verdant, Honey Heart, and two servants who were waiting on any orders that might be forthcoming. Luna ate her porridge as Verdant, temporarily out of energy and with a full belly, began yawning hugely.

 

房间里再一次只剩下了卢娜、青翠的、可爱的心和两个仆人,他们在等待可能到来的任何命令。卢娜喝着粥,青翠的身体暂时没了力气,肚子也撑得鼓鼓的,开始大口打哈欠。

 

“I think it’s nearly time for a nap,” Honey Heart said softly.

 

“我想该是睡觉的时间了。”甜心轻声说。

 

“Nuh,” the prince replied.

 

“不。”王子答道。

 

Luna shook her head. “Not quite yet. Celestia will want to see him before he takes his nap.”

 

卢娜摇了摇头。“不是。塞莱斯蒂想在他睡午觉之前见见他。”

 

“Of course, Princess.”

 

“当然,公主。”

 

Luna ate quietly while Verdant’s head bobbed lower and lower, only to snap back up as his eyes blinked owlishly every minute or so. Eventually, no amount of willpower was enough to keep the prince awake. He flopped over onto his cushion and curled up like a puppy.

 

卢娜静静地吃着,而弗唐顿斯的头越低越低,只在他的眼睛每隔一分钟左右就像猫头鹰一样眨一下眼睛的时候,突然又跳了起来。最后,再多的意志力也无法让王子保持清醒。他扑通一声倒在垫子上,像小狗一样蜷成一团。

 

Luna caught Honey Heart’s eye and gestured her closer. The mare stepped quietly in order to not wake the prince and sat down, eying Luna curiously.

 

卢娜看到了甜心的眼睛,向她做了个手势。母马为了不吵醒王子,悄悄地走过去坐下,好奇地看着卢娜。

 

“Honey Heart, perhaps you can answer a question for me,” Luna asked in a low voice.

 

“亲爱的,也许你能回答我一个问题。”卢娜低声问。

 

“If I can, Princess, I would be happy to.”

 

“如果可以,公主,我很乐意。”

 

“My sister has never raised a child before. The closest she’s come is taking on the occasional apprentice. Granted, she relies upon you and several other palace servants, but my curiosity is piqued. How well does Celestia do with Verdant?”

 

“我姐姐从来没有养过孩子。她最接近的方式就是偶尔当个学徒。当然,她要依靠您和其他几位宫中侍从,但是我的好奇心被激起了。天丝佳和青翠相处得怎么样?”

 

A panicked look washed over the mare’s face. “I wouldn’t presume—”

 

母马的脸上掠过惊恐的神色。“我不会相信——“

 

“No, of course you wouldn’t,” Luna replied quickly. “Have no fear, this conversation will remain between the two of us, I swear it.”

 

“不,你当然不会。”卢娜很快地回答。“别害怕,这次谈话将是我们两人之间的事,我发誓。”

 

Honey Heart eyed the two servants in the room out of the corner of her eye. Luna sighed and faced the pair of them.

 

甜心用眼角瞟了一眼房间里的两个仆人。卢娜叹了口气,面对着他们俩。

 

“Now would be a good time for both of you to get some refreshments for yourselves, don’t you think?”

 

“现在正是你们俩各自吃点点心的好时候,你看怎么样?”

 

The unicorns exchanged a glance before looking back at Luna and bowing in unison. When they left, they closed the door softly behind them.

 

独角兽互相看了一眼,然后回头看了看卢娜,一致鞠躬。当他们离开时,他们轻轻地关上了身后的门。

 

“I shall speak frankly,” Luna began once they were alone. “I am concerned. My sister seems to delegate most of Verdant’s day to various palace servants. Is there cause for alarm?”

 

“我要坦率地说。”他们一走,卢娜就开口了。“我很担心。我妹妹似乎把大部分的青葱岁月都交给了宫廷里的侍从们。有必要惊慌吗?”

 

“I… I can’t say, Princess Luna, I really—”

 

“我……我不能说,卢娜公主,我真的——”

 

Luna leaned forward and placed a hoof on Honey Heart’s leg. “Have no fear of reprisals. I simply need to be sure that Celestia isn’t shirking her duties towards her son.”

 

卢娜向前倾了倾身子,把蹄子放在甜心的腿上。“不要害怕报复。我只需要确保塞莱斯蒂不会逃避她对儿子的责任。”

 

Honey Heart’s eyes flashed as her spine stiffened. “She would never!” she whispered fiercely as she pulled her leg away. “Celestia is extremely caring and patient with him. Considering how many other duties she has, I’m amazed how calm and serene she manages to be.”

 

甜心的眼睛一亮,她的脊梁骨直了起来。“她不会!她一边把腿挪开,一边恶狠狠地小声说。“塞莱斯蒂对他非常关心和耐心。考虑到她还有很多其他的事情要做,我很惊讶她能做到如此的冷静和安详。”

 

Luna couldn’t help but chuckle over that, which seemed to confuse the nursemaid.

 

卢娜忍不住笑了起来,这似乎把保姆弄糊涂了。

 

“I continuously find myself reminded that a thousand years have passed since my incarceration on the moon,” Luna said by way of explanation. “The Celestia you describe and the one I remember are almost completely different mares.”

 

“我不断地发现自己被提醒,自从我被关在月球上已经一千年了,”卢娜解释道。“你描述的天仙和我记得的那只几乎是完全不同的母马。”

 

“How so?” Honey Heart asked carefully before quickly adding a belated, “Princess!”

 

“怎么这么?心上人小心翼翼地问道,然后赶紧加了一句迟到的:“公主!”

 

“Equestria was wilder back then.” Luna shook her head slowly. “The Celestia I remembered could never be described as ‘serene’ or ‘calm’.”

 

“小马国那时候更狂野。卢娜慢慢地摇了摇头。“我所记得的天庭从来不能被形容为'平静'或'平静'。”

 

“How would you have described me, then?”

 

“那么,你会怎样形容我呢?”

 

Luna froze for a moment and then turned towards the now open door of the dining hall. Celestia was standing there with an amused smile on her face.

 

卢娜僵住了一会儿,然后转向餐厅已经打开的门。塞莱斯蒂站在那里,脸上挂着愉快的微笑。

 

“I would have said ‘passionate and headstrong’.” Luna grinned back at her and nodded towards an empty cushion. “Please join us, sister.”

 

“我会说‘热情而倔强’。卢娜朝她咧嘴一笑,朝一个空垫子点了点头。“姐姐,请加入我们吧。”

 

As Celestia moved towards the cushion, she spared a happy smile for the slumbering Prince Verdant. Several bakery items, wrapped in Celestia’s golden aura, floated off of the breakfast cart and towards Celestia’s place at the table.

 

当塞莱斯蒂走向靠垫时,她对睡着的葱翠王子露出了愉快的微笑。几样裹着赛丽丝佳金色光环的烘焙食品从早餐车上飘了下来,飘到了赛丽丝佳的桌旁。

 

“So, did I hear you were concerned about how much attention I can spare Verdant?” Celestia asked as she lay down on the cushions. She took a nibble of a pastry as Luna answered.

 

“那么,我听说你很关心我对青翠的关注吗?”塞莱斯蒂躺在垫子上问道。卢娜回答时,她咬了一口糕点。

 

“Yes, sister. Though I meant no offense. I know how difficult it can be for a Princess to find the time for personal matters.” Luna flexed her wings and ruffled her feathers. “The stars know I have a challenge warding the Dreamrealms all night. The population has expanded greatly in my absence.”

 

“是的,姐姐。虽然我无意冒犯。我知道一个公主要抽出时间处理私人事务是多么的困难。卢娜展开翅膀,竖起羽毛。“星星们都知道我今晚要挑战《守护梦界》。我不在的时候,人口大大增加了。”

 

Celestia sighed. “Yes, well, that’s the price of peace and stability, but I’m glad to pay it.” She took another bite of her pastry, her expression thoughtful as she chewed and swallowed. “Nevertheless, you may have a point. I’ll try to delegate more of my duties, to make sure I spend more time with him.”

 

Celestia叹了口气。“是的,好吧,这是和平与稳定的代价,但我愿意付出。她又咬了一口糕点,边嚼边咽,脸上露出若有所思的表情。不过,你可能有道理。我会试着分配更多的任务,确保有更多的时间和他在一起。”

 

“Yes,” Luna said, nodding. “It's only for a short while, after all. Once he’s old enough, he can join us in ruling this land.”

 

“是的。”卢娜点头说。“毕竟,这只是很短的一段时间。等他长大了,他就可以和我们一起统治这片土地。”

 

Celestia snorted in a very un-Princess-like fashion. “Don’t be so quick to map out his future, Luna. We didn’t get much of a choice in our lives, but I would like for him to decide his own course.”

 

塞莱斯蒂以一种非常不像公主的方式哼了一声。“别那么快就给他的未来做打算,卢娜。我们在生活中没有多少选择,但我希望他能决定自己的道路。”

 

“Then, perhaps we can enlist Erin as a fourth princess?” Luna asked lightly, attempting to hide her resultant grin behind a lemon tart.

 

“那么,也许我们可以让艾琳当第四公主?”卢娜淡淡地问道,试图把她的笑容藏在一个柠檬馅饼后面。

 

Celestia choked briefly on her pastry before levitating a glass of applejuice up to her muzzle and taking a quick sip. “Don’t even joke about that!” she said, vexed. “I had to spend the last hour attempting to convince that stone-headed Noble’s Council that she’s not going to have any titles or political powers.”

 

Celestia在糕点上短暂地哽咽了一下,然后把一杯苹果汁升到她的口鼻,迅速地喝了一口。“别拿这个开玩笑!”她烦恼地说。“我花了最后一个小时试图说服固执的贵族委员会,她不会有任何头衔或政治权力。”

 

Luna laughed at the thought of the panicking nobles, who probably thought that their “ancient” bloodlines were under threat.

 

一想到那些惊慌失措的贵族,卢娜就笑了,他们可能认为他们“古老”的血统受到了威胁。

 

“Did they truly believe we’d make her a co-ruler of Equestria?” Luna asked, grinning.

 

“他们真的相信我们会让她成为小马国的联合统治者吗?”卢娜咧嘴笑着问。

 

“Either that, or they hoped we would use Ascent to make anypony of noble blood into an alicorn.” Celestia snorted again, this time in disgust. “And, I should add, only nobleponies.”

 

“要么是这样,要么是他们希望我们利用提升术,让任何贵族血统的小马变成阿利康。塞莱斯蒂又哼了一声,这次是厌恶地哼。“而且,我要补充一句,只有贵族院的人才这样。”

 

Luna rolled her eyes. “Naturally.”

 

卢娜转了转眼睛。“自然”。

 

“Um, I beg your pardon, Princesses?”

 

“嗯,公主们,请再说一遍好吗?”

 

Luna started. Verdant had been sleeping, and Honey Heart had been so quiet that she’d quite forgotten that they were there while the two sisters had talked.

 

月亮开始。翠绿的叶子已经睡着了,甜心的心是那么安静,她完全忘记了两姐妹说话的时候他们就在那里。

 

It was Celestia who responded to her. “Yes, Honey Heart?”

 

回答她的是塞莱斯蒂。“是的,亲爱的心?”

 

“I don’t mean to interrupt, but it would probably be for the best if I brought the young prince back to his room for the rest of his nap.”

 

“我无意打断您的话,不过最好还是让我把年轻的王子带回他的房间去睡一会儿。”

 

Celestia looked longingly at the little colt for a moment. “Yes. Yes, of course. And, thank you.”

 

塞莱斯蒂渴望地看了小马驹一会儿。“是的。是的,当然。,谢谢你。”

 

“My pleasure, Highness,” Honey Heart said as she rose and bowed.

 

“我的荣幸,殿下,”甜心说,她站起来鞠躬。

 

The nursemaid’s horn glowed and the prince, cushion and all, lifted gently into the air. She managed the feat so gently that Verdant didn’t even break the rhythm of his breathing. Celestia, a wistful expression on her face, watched as the nursemaid left with the little colt floating on his cushion ahead of her. Once the door closed behind them, she turned back to Luna as her expression turned determined.

 

保姆的角闪着光,王子,连同他的坐垫,轻轻地升到了空中。她完成这一壮举的动作是如此的轻柔,以至于弗登斯甚至没有中断他的呼吸节奏。塞莱斯蒂脸上带着渴望的表情,看着保姆离开,小马驹漂浮在她前面的垫子上。门在他们身后关上之后,她转过身来看着卢娜,表情变得坚决起来。

 

“I won’t fail him, Luna.” Celestia scowled briefly. “I’ll give him the childhood he never had before, I swear it.”

 

“我不会让他失望的,卢娜。Celestia皱了皱眉。“我要给他一个他从来没有过的童年,我发誓。”

 

Luna got up and walked around the table, finally settling next to the elder princess. She draped a wing across Celestia’s back and nuzzled her shoulder.

 

卢娜站起来,绕着桌子走了一圈,最后在大公主身边坐了下来。她把一只翅膀搭在塞莱斯蒂的背上,用鼻子摩擦她的肩膀。

 

“I know you will, sister,” Luna said gently. “I know you will.”

 

“我知道你会的,妹妹。”卢娜温和地说。“我知道你会的。”

 

~~* Erin *~~~ ~ *艾琳* ~ ~

 

Things had finally calmed down at Erin’s house, though Twilight had sulked for a little while after finding out that the “prank” was nowhere near as funny as her attempt at acting casual.

 

艾琳家里的气氛终于平静下来,尽管暮光之城发现这个“恶作剧”一点也不像她试图表现得随意那么有趣,所以生气了一会儿。

 

Still, there were presents to hand around, and that brought everypony back to reality pretty quickly.

 

尽管如此,还是有礼物可以分发,这让everypony很快回到了现实。

 

“And here are some baking spices,” Pinkie said, pushing a bag towards Erin. “And here are some recipes!” She passed the recipe book over as she shot a sly glance at Twilight, adding, “There’s even a really good snickerdoodle recipe in there.”

 

“这里还有一些烘焙调料,”平基说着,把一个袋子推给了艾琳。“这里有一些食谱!”她狡黠地瞥了一眼《暮光之城》,把食谱递了过去,补充说,“里面还有一份非常棒的《咯咯笑》食谱。”

 

“Ha, ha,” Twilight said, though she smiled when she said it.

 

“哈,哈,”暮光说,尽管她说这话时面带微笑。

 

“Thanks, Pinkie.” Erin smiled as she gathered the items up and set them on an end table.

 

“谢谢,小手指。艾琳微笑着把东西收拾起来,放在一张茶几上。

 

“Well, I brought over a few things, too.” Twilight pulled a book out of her saddlebag with her magic and floated it over to Erin. “This is The Complete History of Ponyville. I thought you’d like to read it!”

 

“嗯,我也带来了一些东西。暮光之城用她的魔法从鞍囊里拿出一本书,递给了艾琳。“这就是波尼维尔的全部历史。我还以为你会喜欢读呢!”

 

“Oh, Twilight! Thank you!”

 

“哦,《暮光之城》!谢谢你!”

 

“That’s not all! I also brought Beginner’s Magic Exercises. It’s a foal’s book, but I figured, since you’ve never used magic before, this would be something of some use to you.”

 

“这还不是全部!我还带来了初学者的魔术练习。这是一本关于小马驹的书,不过我想,既然你以前从来没有用过魔法,这本书对你会有些用处的。”

 

“Oooh!” Erin said, eying the book appreciatively. Then she looked around the room. “I should probably remember to buy a bookshelf while I’m out shopping today.”

 

“噢!埃琳说,欣赏地看了看这本书。然后她环顾了一下房间。“我今天出去买东西的时候应该记得买个书架。”

 

“So, where are our presents?” Pinkie asked, her eyes sparkling.

 

“那么,我们的礼物在哪里?”小粉问道,她的眼睛闪闪发光。

 

“Pinkie!” Twilight scolded.

 

“小指!《暮光之城》骂。

 

Erin laughed and held up her hooves. “I’ll get them for you. Hold on.”

 

埃琳笑了,举起了她的蹄子。“我去给你拿。”等一等。”

 

Pinkie and Twilight waited with varying degrees of patience as Erin made her way around to the other side of the large, central pile of boxes. There were eight smaller gift-wrapped boxes stacked against the wall and, after checking the labels, Erin pulled two of them out. She stacked the two boxes on her back and walked, carefully, back to where the other two were sitting.

 

艾琳从中间的一大堆盒子里走到另一边,小粉和暮光以不同程度的耐心等待着。靠墙堆放着八个包装好的小盒子,艾琳看了看标签,从里面拿出了两个。她把两个箱子堆在背上,小心翼翼地走回另外两个箱子坐着的地方。

 

“Now, before you open them, I need a promise from each of you not to tell the others. I want it to be a surprise for all of you, okay?”

 

“现在,在你打开它们之前,我需要你们每个人保证不告诉其他人。我想让它成为你们所有人的一个惊喜,好吗?”

 

Twilight nodded immediately. “Of course.”

 

《暮光之城》立即点了点头。“当然。”

 

“Cross my heart, hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my eye.” Pinkie mimed the actions as she said them.

 

“我发誓,希望飞翔,把蛋糕塞进眼睛里。”小手指一边说一边模仿着这些动作。

 

“Well, that will do, I guess,” Erin said with a grin.

 

“好吧,我想这就够了,”埃琳笑着说。

 

She passed over the gift-wrapped boxes, the one with birthday cakes and balloons going to Pinkie, and the one with a star motif being given to Twilight. Unicorn magic made short work of the wrapping paper, and Twilight gasped when she saw what was inside.

 

她把那些包装好的盒子递了过去,一个是生日蛋糕和气球,另一个是《暮光之城》的星星图案。独角兽魔法很快就把包装纸做好了,暮光看到里面的东西,倒吸了一口气。

 

“Is this..?”

 

“这是……?”

 

“Oh, my gosh!” Pinkie said, gaping at Twilight’s present. Damp bits of paper flew as Pinkie started using her teeth to pull off the rest of the wrapping paper on her own gift.

 

“哦,我的天哪!小品说,目瞪口呆地看着暮光之城的礼物。当小粉开始用她的牙齿撕掉自己礼物上剩下的包装纸时,潮湿的纸屑飞了起来。

 

Meanwhile, Twilight was reverently opening the box, the cardboard sliding open with a soft whisper.

 

与此同时,暮光城恭恭敬敬地打开了箱子,纸板轻轻滑动着打开了。

 

“Oh, my… Erin, this is amazing!”

 

“哦,我的……艾琳,这太棒了!”

 

Erin grinned hugely. “You like it?”

 

艾琳大咧嘴一笑。“你喜欢吗?”

 

“I love it!” Twilight cautiously removed the tablet from the box. “Oh! It has my cutie mark on the back!”

 

“我爱它!暮光小心翼翼地把平板电脑从盒子里拿出来。“哦!它背上有我可爱的标记!”

 

“What?!” Pinkie mangled her own box a little bit in her haste. Inside was a glossy pink tablet computer and some accessories. Eyes wide, Pinkie slowly and reverently pulled the tablet out and flipped it over to reveal three balloons stenciled into the back. “Oh, wow…”

 

“什么? !小品在匆忙中把自己的盒子弄得乱七八糟。里面是一台亮粉色的平板电脑和一些配件。小指头慢慢地、恭恭敬敬地把平板电脑拿出来,翻过来,里面印着三个气球。“哦……”

 

Twilight’s own was a purple that matched her coat, with her starburst cutie mark on the back. She stared at it for a long while before looking at Erin. “All of them have our cutie marks on them?”

 

暮光之城是一件紫色的衣服,和她的外套很相配,衣服后面有星星点点的可爱印记。她盯着它看了很长时间,然后才看了看艾琳。“上面都有我们的可爱标志吗?”

 

Erin nodded, joy bubbling up in her as she saw how much her friends enjoyed the gifts. “I found a place that will customize tablets for you. Also, each one comes with three styluses, if you don’t want to just use voice commands.”

 

艾琳点了点头,当她看到她的朋友们是多么喜欢这些礼物时,她的喜悦之情油然而生。“我找到了一个可以为你定制平板电脑的地方。此外,如果你不想只使用语音指令,每款手机都配有三支手写笔。”

 

“Oh, wow… oh, wow!” Pinkie was turning hers over and over in her hooves, making Erin glad that she had asked for a heavy-duty screen protector to be applied. “What kind of things can it do?”

 

“哦,哇……哦,哇!”小手指在马蹄子里一遍又一遍地翻动着自己的马蹄子,这让艾琳很高兴,因为她要求加一个重型屏幕保护器。“它能做什么?”

 

“Well, let’s see.” Erin tapped a hoof thoughtfully on her chin as she considered. “A lot of the apps won’t work until the wifi gets set up in Ponyville, but when it does you can all call each other, send pictures, messages or movies… um… Oh, Twilight, yours has a bunch of science and history books, along with some fiction. Some documentaries, too. Also a journal, if you want to use it. Pinkie, yours has a bakery database and a ton of music and movies.”

 

“好吧,让我们看看。埃琳思索着,用蹄子拍了拍下巴。“在波尼维尔安装wifi之前,很多应用程序都无法运行,但当wifi安装后,你们就可以互相打电话,发送图片、信息或电影……嗯……哦,《暮光之城》,你的应用程序里有很多科学和历史书籍,还有一些小说。”一些纪录片。还有一本日记,如果你想用的话。小粉,你有一个面包房的数据库和大量的音乐和电影。”

 

Pinkie’s eyes snapped up. “A whole ton?” she asked, hefting the thing with a hoof.

 

小粉的眼睛一眨一眨的。“整个吨?她一边问,一边用蹄子把那东西顶起来。

 

Erin laughed. “Well, not literally a ton, but you could probably play everything on it non-stop for over a month without repeating anything. I remembered that you like cartoons and comedies, so I put a bunch on there when I was loading it up.”

 

艾琳笑了。“嗯,不是真的很多,但你可能可以在一个多月的时间里不间断地玩所有的东西,而不重复任何东西。”我记得你喜欢卡通片和喜剧,所以我在下载的时候放了一堆。”

 

“Erin, this is…” Twilight looked on the verge of tears, Erin was startled to see. “This is amazing! Thank you!”

 

“埃琳,这是……”暮光之城几乎要流泪了,埃琳被吓了一跳。“这真是太神奇了!谢谢你!”

 

Erin smiled as her heart swelled happily. “It’s my pleasure, Twilight.”

 

艾琳笑了,她的心高兴地膨胀起来。“这是我的荣幸,暮光之城。”

 

“Sunflower, I only have one question,” Pinkie Pie said, her voice unexpectedly serious.

 

“向日葵,我只有一个问题。”小品说,她的声音出乎意料的严肃。

 

Erin seriously doubted that Pinkie would end up asking just one question. “Yes, Pinkie?”

 

艾琳非常怀疑小粉最后只会问一个问题。“是的,小指?”

 

“How do I turn this thing on?”

 

“我怎么打开它?”

 

Erin laughed. “Why don’t I take you both through a quick course on how to use them?”

 

艾琳笑了。“为什么我不给你们俩上一节如何使用它们的速成课呢?”

 

It was generally agreed that this was, in fact, the best course of action possible. The three friends settled down while Erin happily began teaching them the basics of how to use their new high-tech toys.

 

大家普遍同意,这实际上是可能采取的最佳行动方针。三个朋友安顿下来,艾琳高兴地开始教他们如何使用他们的新高科技玩具的基础知识。

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