I don’t fly anymore. Not like I used to.
I still go from place to place, of course, but when I was young flying was what I was all about, and now…
Saying that makes me sound old, doesn’t it? Well, I am. Really.
I buried little Prismacolor last week, and at the funeral, ever pony kept asking if I was the granddaughter. It used to bug me, I’m accustomed to it by now.
What can I do about it, after all?
Anyway, flying. Yeah, I was all about it. I even joined the Wonderbolts…but I found that “daredevil“ and “death-defying” don’t mean a whole lot when there’s no death to defy.
I quit, though, when I realized that the crowds didn’t care about my stunts, only about how badly I could crash or explode and still come out fine. Like it was some kind of fetish or something.
It broke my heart, but I was just too damn disgusted to stay.
Anyway, I still train the team of course. I’m Loyalty, after all. I couldn’t let them go entirely.
Soarin’ and Spitfire’s great-grandkid asked me out.
I told him about Green Flash, who retained enough wit near the end of his life to introduce me his trophy wife whenever I wheeled him around the assisted-care facility, and about burying three children and five grandchildren (this was before poor Prismacolor’s fall). I told him I couldn’t bear to see another loved one growing old and dying before my eyes.
He asked me to think about it. Idiot.
How do the others cope with this?
How can I love anyone mortal, knowing they’re going to die and leave me behind? How could I do that do myself? To them?
How do they all manage this? I’ve wanted to ask for years now, but they all seem to happy, so content. How can I burden them with thoughts like this?
Princess Celestia attended Prisma’s funeral, just like with all our loved ones. I think she feels responsible or maybe guilty, for making us Elements and putting us through this over and over again.
I asked her, because she’s been alive longer than anypony else. I told her how it hurt, how it always hurt, and how I didn’t see the point anymore.
“Do you think moments because less precious when you found yourself with so many more of them?” she replied. “Do we stop planting flowers in our gardens, knowing they will wither with the coming of winter?”
She nuzzled my cheek.
“Time and death stalk even us, but sadness is the shadow that throws the light of our happiness into sharp relief. Do not be oppressed by the length of your life, but embrace every second. That is what the Dash I know and love would do.”
And you know, she’s right. I did a loop-de-loop for the first time in decades as I though of it, not to train or entertain anybody, but because I wanted to enjoy myself in flight.
I’m Rainbow Dash, Element of Harmony, and for the first time in over a century, I’m going to live.
(Thanks for the extension. These usually end while I’m at work. Also, I suck at titles.)
Comments by Kyronea:
You’re quite welcome for the extension, although I must extend a minor finger waggle as this story is a little off the mark. Immortality doesn’t quite fit the concept of death being unstoppable, after all…and yet the story still definitely addresses the subject, because Rainbow Dash deals with a death not of her life itself, but of her way of life. She doesn’t even really live. Sure, she exists. She’s technically alive. But she wasn’t really living. And she has to face the death of loved ones all around her while she keeps going. At the end she decides she’s going to live again, but…I question how long her determination will last. This story, despite its message of hope, fills me with a bit of sadness, and a strong sympathy for Rainbow Dash.