Six mares. Fifteen combinations. Infinite possibilities.
Rainbow strutted around in the black flight suit that clung to her lithe body, and Rarity’s eyes followed every twist and turn of the smooth, nearly glistening fabric as Rainbow tested it with every stretch of her limbs.
“Damn, Rarity. This feels awesome.”
Rarity gave Rainbow a kiss and slid a hoof against Rainbow’s chest, feeling her handiwork, before grabbing the zipper.
Rainbow grinned. “What’re you doing?”
Rarity snorted. “Taking it off.”
* * * * * *
Fallen apples litter the orchard, and Applejack stands at Fluttershy’s side instead of walking down the rows of trees picking up every last one, and they watch as an army of rabbits, squirrels, and birds clean the apples hungrily.
“I told you they could do it,” Fluttershy said, smiling as she leaned against Applejack.
Applejack grinned at her. “Wonder what we could do to pass the time instead.”
Fluttershy squirmed and spread her wings as Applejack’s lips met hers.
* * * * * *
Pinkie Pie stares into the room in silence, looking at all of her friends, the party hats, the cake, the confetti, the presents.
“You… you surprised me,” she finally said.
Twilight just smiled even wider as she walked up and gave Pinkie a kiss.
“I told you I was studying Pinkie sense for a reason.”
Okay, so, there’s this really cheerful pink pony, right? Right. And she’s basically the best pony in the entire world, nay, the entire multiverse, because she loves everybody and she wants to make everybody happy and yet she has hidden depths and gloriously angsty backstory, because absolutely nobody wants to grow up on a gray and lifeless rock farm.
I mean, how do you even grow rocks? What do you do with the rocks once they’re grown? There are a lot of unanswered questions here.
So anyway, there are these other ponies, who are the pink pony’s friend, and they are all secretly in love with the pink pony because, let’s be honest, who wouldn’t be in love with her? I’m just saying. Anyway, so they’re all in love with her, but none of them tell her, because they do not want to be the ones to upset the delicate and volatile dynamics of the entire friend group. The pink pony goes on sadly unaware of her five friends’ feelings, never knowing the truth, never knowing the sweet, sweet embrace of another mare.
It is tragic. Completely and utterly tragic. But isn’t love unrealized always a little tragic? Yes. Yes, I think it is.
“Sharks.” Twilight leveled an incredulous expression at Rainbow Dash.
“Yeah, sharks!” Rainbow waved her forehooves open and closed in imitation of a pair of enormous jaws.
Twilight raised an eyebrow. “But you said she was a mile in the air.”
“She was,” Rainbow said. “These were flying sharks.”
“Flying sharks,” Twilight repeated.
“I know, isn’t it awesome?” Rainbow grinned wide. “They’re just as dangerous as regular sharks, but they can fly!”
“Uh huh.” Twilight tapped her hoof on the desk.
Rainbow dug under a pile of papers. “I forget how she gets out of that one, but she does, and it’s really awesome. Where did I put it?”
“It’s three in the morning,” Twilight grumbled as she walked through the library main room. “Whoever that is, they have some nerve to disturb me at this hour.” Her magic lighted a candle and she opened the door. “Do you have any idea …” Outside stood a really wet and tired looking baby dragon. ”Spike, I was wondering when you’d come back. It’s three AM, I have just started my second pot of tea. Come in, let’s get you dry before you catch a cold. You should have been in bed hours ago.” Twilight took a step back and let the dragon walk in.
The dragon whelp suppressed a yawn as he walked in. “I know, but Rainbow Dash wanted to complete the latest chapter of her story. You know that novel she has been obsessing over for the last weeks?”
A towel floated over from the bathroom in Twilight’s magic. Spike grabbed it from the air, and started to rub his skin until he was dry again. Then he opened a closet and got a mop to clean up the small puddle he had left on the floor.
Twilight sat down at her desk and shooed away Owlowiscious before he could swipe a cube from her sugar bowl. She gave the bird a hard stare. “Oh, I know what you’re up to, mister!”
Oh, wow, that story is not going to survive Twilight Sparkle’s editorial wrath, now is it? I’m surprised that Spike is willing to spend so much time writing down Rainbow Dash’s story, let alone give her the advice he’s gleaned from spending so much time in libraries. I was amused by how Twilight seemed to finally accept that Dash’s story might be worth her time only to have it shoved in her arms moments later.
Well, me and Dash, we looked at each other, and we each said… “Okay.”
And we wrote the first thing that came to our heads,
Just so happened to be,
The Best Fanfic in the World, it was The Best Fanfic in the World.
Look into my eyes and it’s easy to see
One and one make two, shipping’s that easy,
It was destiny.
Once every hundred-thousand years or so,
When Celestia shines and Luna glows
And the love doth grow…
Needless to say, Discord was stunned,
Whip-crack went his serpent tail,
And the beast was done.
He asked us, “Be you alicorns?”
And we said, “Nay. We are but ponies.”
Ahhh, ahhh, ahhh-ah-ah,
Ohhh, whoah, ah-whoah-oh!
The Prompt: This is not The Greatest Fanfic in the World, no, this is just a tribute.
This is a thirty-minute writing prompt; you have thirty minutes (not including time spent thinking and planning) in which to write a story inspired by today’s prompt. Because this is Super Saturday, you have seven hours from the start of this prompt to submit your stories; submissions will be closed at 7:00pm PDT, 10:00pm EDT, and 2:00am GMT. If you don’t happen to have a Tumblr account, you can submit your story by emailing it (in the body of the email, not as an attachment) to firstname.lastname@example.org; do not submit using Tumblr’s email submission system, as it tends to deliver us only the titles of the stories submitted using it.
A long time ago, me and my marefriend Dash here… we was racin’ down a long and lonesome road…
(The prompt is in three hours, at 12:00pm PDT, 3:00pm EDT, and 7:00pm GMT.)
Hey squirt, what are you doing?
You’re kidding, right?
No. No no no no. You can’t just flop on a cloud and shut your eyes, and call it a nap. That’s not a nap. It’s an insult to the whole idea of napping!
Move over, squirt, lemme show ya.
First thing is, you gotta pick the right cloud. You got most of that right, I’ll give you that. It’s got just the right amount of fluff—not so soft that you sink through it, but not so firm that it leaves you sore when you wake up.
Problem is, it’s in the wrong spot. Look at where you’re at, Scoots. Anypony in Ponyville can find you here! And if they can find you, they can wake you up and bug you.
Yeah, I know. Till you can fly on your own, your choices are limited to the clouds that drift low enough to climb to. Hang on tight, squirt, I’m gonna move this thing.
There. Much better. You got shade, and privacy, and trees for you to climb back down.
Wait, what are you doing? Just ‘cause you found the right spot doesn’t mean you’re ready to start napping. You haven’t stretched yet.
“‘Tis Twilight’s fault.” Luna’s voice was muffled by the pillow she’d buried her head under. She was sprawled across the luxurious sofa in the Royal Sisters’ shared entertainment room. A half-full bottle of mead sat on a nearby table. An empty lay on the floor.
Celestia, sitting on the loveseat with a wineglass floating beside her, found the energy to smile at her sister. “Why would you say that?”
“She has stolen the ambassador’s intelligence and taken it for her own. There can be no other explanation.”
A wisp of green smoke swirled in through the fireplace. It gathered itself up over Celestia’s head, spun and imploded with a small pop. A crystal materialized as the smoke vanished, which Celestia caught with her magic.
“It seems my student has sent us a report, and she used her new toy. Perfect timing, wouldn’t you say, Luna?”
Luna peeked out from under her pillow. “Verily. Please, put it on lest I return to that griffin with baster in hoof.”
Celestia hid a chuckle behind her glass as she levitated the crystal over to the contraption they’d imported from the Crystal Empire.
Dear Princess Celestia,
I blink the tears from my eyes. I feel a little calmer already.
I realized yesterday that I never wrote you a letter after defeating Discord. Maybe in all the excitement of defeating him and the award ceremony I just forgot. Maybe I’ve been avoiding it. I had to take a hard look at myself after what happened and I’ve realized a few things.
As much as I’ve enjoyed being in Ponyville, and as much as I’m grateful that you let me stay here, I realize now that I’ve gotten lazy. I believed once that friends didn’t matter, and that they just took time away from study and work. And I think I might have swung a little too far in the other direction. My checklist for yesterday only had three things on it, and I didn’t even bother checking them off.
The fate of Equestria really did rely on my making friends. And now it relies on me keeping them.
I see them walking away from me again, and I have to hold my eyes shut for a moment before I continue.
I thought it would be easy. I won’t make that mistake again. I have to be prepared for everything now.
Your Faithful Student,
* * * * * *
“Twi-Twilight! Your mane’s all gray, and your face has more wrinkles than Applejack’s granny, and—and—Twilight, what happened?”
“I… I don’t…”
The full force of age crashed over Twilight like a wave smashing into the stone cliffs of Vanhoover. Pure, unbridled age sucked the energy out of her. She gasped as her knees wobbled, her legs collapsing like toothpicks. Her side smacked against the metal floor with an ominous crack.
“Twilight!” Pinkie shrieked. Before Twilight could blink she was enveloped in Pinkie’s warm embrace, her face nuzzled repeatedly and dabbed with wet kisses.
Twilight blinked back tears of pain, having to blink more than a few times in an effort to see past the film that had clouded her sight. She still was able to spot Rainbow Dash reaching for the amulet. “Don’t touch it!” she croaked.
“If you touch it, it might kill you!”
Rainbow Dash leaped away from the pulsating artifact and in one smooth fluid motion was by Twilight’s side. “Then what do we do?!”
“I think she broke a rib!” Pinkie said.
Twilight bit back the bizarre urge to laugh. “Try several.” A fresh stab of pain sucked away her breath.
Rainbow Dash bit her lip. “Listen, I’ll go get help, all right?” She raced for the door.
“T-tell Pickaxe to contact Princess C-Cadance!” Twilight forced out.
“Right! Pickaxe!” Rainbow’s hoarse shout echoed until the sound of her charging hooves faded away.
“Twilight… ” Pinkie nuzzled her, staining her face with tears. “I’m sorry… It’s my fault.”
This time Twilight couldn’t restrain it; she let out a chuckle. “No, it’s mine. I was the one foolish enough to use that spell without more carefully researching the possible consequences.”
“I-I don’t understand.”
Everything hurts. Throbbing, insistent pain as real and terrifying as the blood soaking through the clouds around her. Her blood. Rainbow Dash shakes her head to try and clear it and nearly loses her measly lunch as a wave of nausea sweepst over her in a tidal wave. Something terrible happened to her right ear this time, from the way it burns when she moves it.
Wings? workable. Legs? All moving, not broken. Ribs? Rainbow sucks in a huge breath and tries not to scream. Cracked. Blood drips down her face from some cut beneath her mane, and she’ll have one hell of a shiner tomorrow.
It wasn’t too surprising, really, what had happened. Somepony… Hoops, probably, had bothered Fluttershy again, and so Rainbow had done her usual thing and roughed up the whole gang of them in return. They’d promised to leave Fluttershy alone after she’d won the race, but they still went at it, and Rainbow’d come into her shared room and see Fluttershy curled up and shivering on her neatly made bed. Nopony got Fluttershy that worked up and got away with it. Not only that, but Rainbow’s honor was at stake. When they messed with ‘Shy like that, it was like they were saying Rainbow’s win didn’t count for anything. And that was almost as bad.
But rooming with ‘Shy had made her softer than she had been, to the point where the bullies could get the jump on her. Used to be, she’d always be ready for them and anything they’d try to dish out. Used to be, Rainbow’d be too fast, too strong, too devious and calculating for them to even touch her. Her dad had taught her all the places where a wing was delicate, all the places where a ribcage could break, all the places where a well-placed kick would leave a pony out cold. It was how life went in the Stacks, hit or be hit. But Fluttershy had shown her how kindness could stop a blow as quickly as a wing-swipe, how a well-placed hug could end an entire fight without a bruise. And so, this time, those five colts had really put her through the ringer.
Guilt. Fluttershy was no stranger to the emotion. Ponies cracked jokes about how she would apologize for apologizing too much. The words ‘I’m sorry’ came to her tongue easier than her own name. Her friends always reassured her that she had nothing to apologize for, that she had done nothing wrong. Sometimes, they were right. It was just her over-cautious nature seeking to internalize things that she had no control over.
But there were other times when she deserved the guilt. Sometimes, she had done something so terribly, terribly wrong that just apologizing for it was utterly insufficient. She had to apologize for everything else, because it was all she could think of to do. She was sorry. So very sorry. Fluttershy was a sorry pony.
Guilt lanced through Fluttershy’s heart like a knife as she watched Rainbow Dash strain to reach the cupboard. There was something so completely wrong about seeing Rainbow reach with her hooves for something above her head instead of simply flying up to get it. Her eyes were set on the wooden handle with a single-minded focus, and she made quiet grunts of exertion as she stretched for it.
Fluttershy couldn’t bear it any longer. She flew up and opened the cupboard, fishing out the glass with Rainbow’s cutie mark and placing it in her hooves.
Rainbow Dash scowled at the cup. “I had it, Fluttershy,” she said
More guilt. Fluttershy dropped to the ground and folded her wings to her sides. “I’m sorry,” she said, casting her eyes to the floorboards. “I—I should have asked if you wanted me to get it for you.”
Rainbow’s expression softened. She set the glass on the counter and drew Fluttershy into a hug. “Hey.” She gave her a tight squeeze. “It’s okay, ‘Shy. You’re just looking out for me. I appreciate it.”
(Wine and Raridash, they are my true loves. Hey look I came back and wrote for TMP and was predictable)
The move to Canterlot hasn’t been perfect. I know that. I pride myself on noticing things, but it doesn’t take my astute eye to heed the obvious signs. Rainbow sighing, for one. Honestly, Rainbow, sighing?
So I smile at her. I levitate the precious dark bottle with tender care, with gravity and with some veneration. I angle it perfectly, enjoy the way that dark and beautiful liquid finds it’s home in the crystal that has the emblem of my House on it.
Rarity, Applejack and Rainbow Dash were running some errands in town while the Cutie Mark Crusaders were off crusading, but were surprised to see the three fillies moping in the town square. Concerned, they walked up to the trio to see what was bothering them.
“It’s no use,” Sweetie Belle said as they apporached, “we’ll never get our cutie marks.”
“We’ve tried everything, and we still haven’t found what we’re good at,” said Applebloom.
“We should at least have gotten a cutie mark in looking for a cutie mark by now,” Scootaloo said, kicking at the ground.
The three mares looked at each other, and set out to give the young ones some encouragement. To tell them that it didn’t matter if they had found their special talent yet or not, that there was something more valuable than knowing what it is you were meant to do. And what better way to do that then through song.
“Twi, you wanna tell us why you’re not casting a light spell? Cause it’s seriously starting to bug—”
Rainbow’s voice was silenced when Twilight’s hoof touched the floor, and a line of light ran across the walls, lighting the dark room. Twilight smirked at her for a moment, but she said nothing as she walked out of the hall into the chamber before them. It was a wide circular room with a high domed ceiling, and the walls were covered in carvings depicting ponies, as well as zebras, griffons, donkeys, and buffalo. There was a large circle carved on the floor, with an intricate pattern of lines and swirls filling it.