One merit Octavia had to give to Buck Daniels, was that it slowly washed away any capability she had for tasting, until she no longer grimaced with each sip. In fact, she even gained the courage to move up to, 'slugging,' the drink, not that she'd ever be caught dead using that phrase. It was after several on-the-house glasses, from an unknown benefactor, that she found herself lacking the co-ordination to even pick up the glasses anymore. Her teeth simply failing to gain purchase on the sides. Upon blearily inspecting the two glass-mirages in front of her, she noted that instead of the stout glasses she had been given all night, she was instead looking at a slender, flute-like glass. A unicorn glass, for the only non-unicorn musician in the business. Terrific.
She was so engrossed in attempting to defy both nature and pony design by trying to lift the glass with her tongue, that she hadn't noticed the absence of the thudding bass that had troubled her eardrums moments ago. She hadn't noticed the DJ receive her standing ovation and cheers as she left the stage. In fact, she hadn't even noticed as the same DJ as she sat across the table from her. The club had all but emptied, and the only ponies remaining were Octavia and the strange DJ sitting across from her.
The DJ's concerned red eyes glinted from underneath the purple shades that rested atop her horn. Octavia's little bubble of glass-design irritation wasn't broken until she felt the worried hoof on her foreleg. She dropped the glass in surprise, vaguely catching the tinkling splash of it shattering on the floor.
The DJ snapped her hoof back, surprised by Octavia's sudden jump back out of her own, little world. She leaned forward, trying to see Octavia's face, and assess exactly how inebriated she was.
"You, uhh...you okay there, filly?"
Octavia had difficulty locking onto a particular hazy manifest of the polar-white DJ, so she did her best to spread her eyes between the three of them. For the DJ's part, Octavia looked very similar to a Ponyville mailmare she had seen on the news.
"I am...ferpectly pine, thanks!"
Tracking all three ponies was becoming difficult with all the swaying the room had decided on doing. Octavia didn't remember boarding a cruise ship, but she'd played on some now and then. It was also irritating that she always gravitated to the eyes of the center pony. She decided that it would be best to find some method of disembarking before the sea got any more rough.
"I'll just be on my way, thanks!"
The ill-fated attempt to sling her cello case over her shoulder and leave the club ran its course, and Octavia was soon sprawled on the floor in a mass of her limbs, hair, and cello case. The DJ couldn't help but smile at the intoxicated mare, and bent down to untangle her from her self-imposed bonds.
"Something tells me you'll have a little trouble getting home tonight. Where do you live?"
A foreleg broke free from the mass, pointing roughly to its left.
"Yeh, I think I'll have trouble finding it, then. Right, you got any friends here?"
"Alright." Vinyl slid her legs under Octavia's body, pulling her to her hooves. "Name's Vinyl, Vinyl Scratch. I'll help you home, you look like you won't hold a long journey, but my place isn't far, only a block or two."
The mutter from the grey mare could either have been a, 'thank you,' or a phonetically similar swear. Vinyl, being an optimist, hoped for the former. Octavia tried to push away from Vinyl, wobbling uncertainly on her hooves, before crumpling to the floor once more after the first attempted step. Vinyl simply sighed, picking her up once more. Thankfully Octavia was a lot more receptive to aid this time around.
Despite the added support, Octavia barely held herself steady. Her swaying motions had the obvious effect, and Vinyl leaned out of the way as she heaved the sautee'd daisies Octavia had eaten for supper over the floor. Both ponies gingerly stepped around the mess. Vinyl shot an apologetic smile to the bartender, who, despite having a broom handle between his teeth, still managed to control enough of his face to look thoroughly indignant at the additional chore. A shrug was all the DJ could offer as she left, struggling to deal with the now barely conscious filly that was draped over her shoulder.
Vinyl managed to hold the door open with her magic, trudging out into the visceral cold of late-night winter. The pony leaning against her wriggled closer for body heat, and Vinyl readjusted her grip on the grey mare.
"Hey, filly. You alright down there?"
Octavia groaned, barely keeping the urge to regurgitate in check with sheer willpower alone.
"Not gunna be a night for great conversation, eh?"
Vinyl hummed a tune as she walked, if only to stave off boredom and drown the groans from the other mare. True to her word, the journey was short. Carrying Octavia up the stairs was no mean feat. She looked light and sprightly, but seemed to have lead for a skeleton. Vinyl barely managed to drag her into her bed and throw the covers over her, before she wandered off in search of a much needed cup of coffee.
The mare had no contact numbers in her cello case, so Vinyl was at a loss for somepony to help until the mare got the alcohol out of her system. She had dealt with many fillies that couldn't handle their drinks in her time, though it was drunken stallions that were most common. Let it run its course, then send them out in the morning. She'd noticed the mare's pink eyes as she'd been halfway through her set. She practically glared at Vinyl as if she wanted her to abandon the stage. Typical that she was an orchestral musician, she supposed.
The cello was no cheap number either, the ivory tuning pegs alone said that. It wasn't until she flipped through her Musician's Weekly magazine that she noticed the pony on her bed, standing forelegs-crossed on the front cover.
"Canterlot's Earth Pony Musical Maestro."
So her name was Octavia, Vinyl had heard of her down the apple branch, actually. She had to hoof it to her, earth pony musicians were as common as pegasus scientists, or unicorn farmers. Playing an instrument with magic was difficult enough, never-mind trying to do it without the amazing horn unicorns were blessed with.
The coffee, as with every night, had a short-lived effect. Vinyl felt the usual weight of a long set draping itself over her shoulders. It was a Princess-sized bed, so there would be room to spare, surely. She didn't have work until tomorrow evening, so she would be able to help the mare on her way before she left. She tip-hoofed around the bed, being careful not to wake the grey pony as she slipped onto the bed next to her, still giving a good pony's worth of room between them. She slipped her shades onto the bedside cabinet, and turned towards the mare, noting the almost graceful way her mane spread across the pillow as she lay. The delicate lightness of her breathing, the little smile that curved across her muzzle. A light giggle at a drunkard's dream. She had to admit, for an unconscious, drunk pony, she pulled off the look very well. Vinyl turned away from her, closing her eyes and drifting off to a well-earned sleep.