Rainbow Dash soared through the sky, pulling off trick after trick after trick. She knew from an early age that it was her destiny to be accepted into a world-class flying team, and as she gazed left and right at her teammates on either side of her, mirroring her amazing efforts (Although she had to admit that her own motions were just a bit more crisp and slightly more awesome), she knew that her wish had finally come true. Sure, it wasn’t the Wonderbolts, and that was a little bit of a sting. After all, it was them that she’d always envisioned joining. However, the most important thing in her mind was that she get to show off her skills and become recognized for them. This team might not have been the Wonderbolts, but they flew just as spectacularly as them, and there was little doubt in her mind that flying with them would be her fast track to fame.
Dash settled down on the ground after a good long session with her team. As she thought about the prospect of fame, she paused for a moment. She quietly wondered to herself why she’d never heard of the Shadowbolts before today. Here was a team of pegasi who were just as good as the Wonderbolts, if not better. Not to mention, their outfits were way cooler. The blue and yellow theme that the Wonderbolts used was pretty cool, but come on! Black and dark purple? So awesome! Maybe the Shadowbolts were famous somewhere outside of Equestria. There were more places outside of what she’d visited, after all. The concept of this excited the young filly. Here she was, joining a flying team that was already famous in other parts of the world. News of the newest member would spread along…wherever they were famous…like wildfire, and once that happened, the spotlight would be on her in Equestria too. She could picture the headlines in the papers; Rainbow Dash, Equestria’s newest pride and joy, proves her worth with the world-famous Shadowbolts. Once again…SO AWESOME!
Dash looked over to her teammates. She had yet to get their names; she’d been too busy showing off her skills to worry about silly semantics like introductions. Now that they were on break, maybe such things were in order. Dash approached the pony who’d invited her to join up, assuming that she was the leader.
“Hey!” Dash said, patting her on the shoulder. “Thanks for letting me on your team and stuff. You’re not gonna be disappointed, that’s for sure!” The Shadowbolt nodded, looking away to the rest of the team.
“Right,” she answered. “I’m sure.” Dash grinned, trying to hold back her excitement so as to come off as the cool pony she was.
“So what’s your name?” Dash asked. The Shadowbolt rolled her eyes a bit.
“I’m Nightshade,” she said. She then pointed to each other member individually. “That’s Stratus, Starry Skies, Blueball Blitz, and Charger.” Dash reached a hoof out for a hoof bump, but Nightshade didn’t return it. Dash noticed this and quickly played it off, bringing her hoof up to fix her mane.
“So when do I get a cool costume like yours?” Dash asked, inspecting the Shadowbolt uniform all over. Nightshade laughed.
“Cool your jets, Rainbow Dash,” Nightshade said with a smirk. “You’re the rookie of the team, and you’ve gotta earn your uniform.” The other Shadowbolts all grinned, eyeing Dash.
“Pfft…earn it?” Dash asked with a snicker. “I’m already the most amazing flier Equestria’s ever seen. What else could I possibly need to do to earn my costume?” Nightshade just smiled and shook her head.
“This is a regular ritual we put all of our new members through,” Nightshade answered. “Trust me, you’ll like it just as much as the rest of the team will.” The Shadowbolt that Nightshade had referred to as Stratus sidled up to Dash’s side, smirking.
“You know, Shade,” Stratus said. “You gave the first test to the last new member. What say I…test Miss Dash here first?” Nightshade chuckled.
“Sure thing, Stratus,” she responded. “Come on, Dash. Let’s go.” He gave Dash’s flank a smack, causing her to jump a bit. The other Shadowbolts laughed as they brought themselves back into the air. Dash chuckled lightly as well. She always saw members of sports teams smacking each other’s flanks. She felt like she really belonged. Dash unfurled her wings and flew off to join her new teammates. Out of the corner of her eye, she watched the five ponies she’d entered the forest with as they waited on the other side of the ravine. She briefly considered going back, but she barely knew them. This was far more important. She’d always wished to join a world-class flying team, and at long last, her wish had come true.
And here, when I chose this prompt, I thought this sort of situation had never come up in the show, but here I am proven forgetful and wrong. Rainbow Dash choosing the Shadowbolts’ offer over four ponies she barely knows and Fluttershy is a terrifying scenario, especially as we follow Dash out of the forest, because it leaves the fate of the others unknown. A clever choice for this prompt.