Multiple pecks to the face woke Spike from his slumber. He slowly opened his eyes to find a small baby phoenix pecking a spot between his eyes.
“Alright, alright, I’m up,” he said. The phoenix flew a few inches away from him as Spike sat up in his basket. He reached for a nearby clock. “Peewee, it’s 4:20 in the morning. What could possibly be so important that you had to wake me up?” Upon closer inspection, Spike could see that the phoenix had a disgruntled expression on his face as well as bags under his eyes. Peewee pointed to the exit of the room where light from the library’s foyer spilt in. Spike got out of his basket and headed to the foyer with his phoenix following him. When he entered the foyer, he found his guardian pacing in front of a chalk board. Peewee silently squawked.
“Seven hours? Really?” Spike asked. Peewee nodded. “Well, that can’t be good. Something wrong, Twilight?” The purple unicorn looked up at him and the phoenix on his shoulder as they descended the staircase.
“Nothing’s wrong, Spike” she said still pacing. “I’m just trying to solve a puzzle.” When Spike reached the bottom, he looked at the chalkboard. On it were three balloons made out of chalk surrounded by a heart. Two of them were cyan while the other was yellow. The baby dragon rubbed his eyes.
“Great, this again,” he mumbled. “Twilight, this is the fourth night in a row that you’ve been constantly pacing in the middle of the night. You’ll only tire your mind if you keep doing that. Rest for a bit. You might find a solution in the morning. Besides, you’re keeping Peewee up. You don’t want an angry fire bird in a place full of books do you?”
“Fine,” she said heading to their shared room. “But you’re going to help me with this first thing in the morning.” Peewee flew from Spike’s shoulder and into a cage. A blanket was brought over it as Spike yawned. He slowly made the trek back to his basket with his eyes getting heavier with each step.
The sun was slowly rising over the horizon as Spike returned from dream land a second time. When he opened his eyes, he found Twilight staring at him with bloodshot eyes.
“Sweet Celestia!” he screamed tumbling backwards. He untangled himself from a pile of blankets and basket and stood up. “Have you been standing there staring at me the entire night?”
“I said that you’d help me first thing in the morning,” Twilight replied. “And it’s the first thing in the morning.”
“I never agreed to that,” Spike walked to the library’s foyer with Twilight following him. “And that didn’t answer my question.”
“I used a time spell to propel my mind forward,” Spike removed the blanket from Peewee’s cage. “So my body is physically rested while my mind may not be. And no, I was not staring at you for the entire night; I was staring at you for the past hour.” Twilight blinked while Spike placed birdseed in the cage.
“Huh, blinking has never felt this good before. Weird. Anyways, I need help solving the puzzle.” The pair made their way to the kitchen where Spike put two pieces of bread in a toaster. He filled a tea ball with tea leaves and placed it in a kettle.
“Tea?” he asked holding the kettle. Twilight shook her head. “Suit yourself. So, the puzzle that you’ve been trying to solve. It has to do something with Pinkie, and based on the heart on the chalkboard, I can safely assume that it has something to do with love. Am I wrong?” Again, Twilight shook her head. Steam rose from the kettle’s stout. Spike poured the kettle’s contents into a nearby tea cup.
“Tell me, what seems to be the problem?” he asked.
“I can’t solve this puzzle,” Twilight answered.
“Clearly, but what exactly about this puzzle puzzles you?” two pieces of toast were launched into the air. Spike held out a small plate and the pieces of toast landed on it. “Do we still have hummus?”
“Check the fridge,” she said. “I’ve been planning. I’ve planned out dates that the two of us can go on. I’ve planned out both quiet and extravagant things that the two of us can do, but no matter how hard I try, I can’t figure something out.”
“And what would that be?” Spike asked. A beige substance was spread on his toast.
“What’s the first step to actually getting Pinkie to going out with me?” Spike’s toast stopped its journey to his mouth.
“Have you thought of asking her out?”
“Of course I have. But I haven’t decided on the right method to do it.”
“What about being direct?” Spike said with toast in his mouth.
“That’s the tenth fallback plan. But that’s only going to be used as an emergency. Rarity said that something like this should be done with a grand sweeping gesture.”
“Rarity most likely knows best when it comes to these things. So it’s probably a good idea to listen to her,” he placed his tea cup down. “What have you thought of so far?” Twilight’s horn glowed and a piece of parchment appeared in front of her. A pair of spectacles were on her stout as she looked over the paper.
“Let’s see,” she said pushing her spectacles up. “I could go with a romantic sonnet, a song, a message using magic, a love letter telling her about how I feel, or I could move the heavens themselves.”
“That last one doesn’t seem doable,” Spike poured himself a second cup of tea. “And besides the song, none of them seem Pinkie-ish.”
“What do you mean?”
“Pinkie is a happy chaotic pony who works to make everypony happy. Besides the song, do any of these things seem like Pinkie would do to win somepony over?”
“No, they don’t,” A second tea cup was pushed in front of Twilight. She held it in her magical grip and brought it to her lips. “What do you suggest?”
“Let’s think like her for a bit,” Twilight blinked. “I know, it sounds impossible, but humour me. She’s happy, childish, smarter than most give her credit for, and very passionate about what she does. Out of those four personality traits she has, which one do you want to appeal to?” Twilight sipped her tea.
“The happy part,” she said. Spike took one final bite into his toast. Both him and his guardian sat in relative silence for a few moments. The sound of chewing was in both of their ears.
“I’ve got an idea,” Spike said lifting the second piece of toast. “Pinkie likes games and puzzles, they make her happy right?” Twilight nodded.
“So,” he continued. “What if you tell her how you feel though a puzzle and then ask her out after she solves it?” Twilight placed her tea cup down.
“That’s… actually really clever,” she said. “How exactly am I going to tell her through a puzzle though?”
“Buy a five thousand piece jigsaw puzzle,” Spike wiped crumbs off his fingers. “Paint the surface pieces white, assemble it, and then write out whatever message you want. Knowing her, she’ll solve it rather quickly. The message should have a balance of both heartfelt emotion and romantic language.”
“Perfect. One problem though,” she said. “I’m not a romantic. I can write out heartfelt emotion, but I can’t write like a romantic. Not like the modern definition of a romantic anyways.”
“Peewee and I will help you,” a squawk came from the room beside them. “We’ll help you find the right words.”
———————[Time Limit Reached]———————
“Thanks Spike,” Twilight got up and headed for the exit. “I’m going to go to the toy store to buy a puzzle. I’ll pick something up for you and Peewee as a reward.”
“Thanks!” he yelled. As soon as the library’s door closed, Peewee flew in front of Spike’s face and let out a large string of angry screeches. “Look, I’m sorry that you’ve been volun-told for this instead of you volunteering for it. But you have the soul of a poet, and you’re much better with words than Twilight and I are. Are you willing to help?” The baby phoenix landed and turned his back to Spike.
“What will it take for you to help?” Spike asked. Peewee turned around and looked at the remainder of Spike’s toast. The toast was put on his plate and pushed forward. Peewee chirped happily as he stood in front of the plate. He then began to sing.
“Whoa, whoa, whoa, slow down,” Spike said. “Let me get a piece of parchment to write this stuff down. This stuff is perfect for Twilight.” He ran off into the library’s foyer as Peewee happily pecked at the toast.
Norse Pony’s comments: I am filled with squee at the idea that Peewee is the poet and writer in the household. That is a ridiculously cute headcanon. Also, Twinkie. I loves me some Twinkie. I enjoyed Spike’s character here, with him being the rational and thoughtful counterpart to Twilight’s nervous wreck. The story itself was well-constructed. You showed Twilight’s neurotic side skillfully, and paced the reveals of information well.