Alex slept soundly. He had planned to make up for all the time he had lost the past few days. And luckily for him, he hadn’t been dreaming about Discord this time. He dreamt about something MUCH better.
Pink eyes. Blue coat. Cute voice. Rainbow mane…
“Mmmm, Colors…” Alex mumbled, still dreaming.
“Yes?” Her voice said.
“You’re pretty…” Alex mumbled again.
“Oh, am I now?” She giggled.
Something was wrong… That voice hadn’t come from his dream. He had actually HEARD that. After a moment, Alex realized where the voice had come from. Right next to him.
Not daring to open his eyes, Alex formulated a plan to get out of this embarrassing situation.
“Boy-oh-boy… I sure do love rainbows!” Alex said, trying his best to mumble understandably. “Their COLORS are so PRETTY.”
“Yeah right,” Dash said bonking him on the head with her hoof. “Get up!”
Feigning surprise, Alex sat up.
“Colors! When did you get here?” Alex lied, unconvincingly.
“You were dreaming about me!” Dash accused.
“Uh, no!” Alex said. “I was dreaming about a rainbow!”
“You said I was pretty when I talked to you!” Dash argued, whilst resisting the urge to blush. “What about that?”
“I… Uh… I thought the rainbow… was-- was a talking rainbow!” Alex stammered
“Uh huh.” Dash said, deciding to turn the tables on him, “So, does that mean you DON’T think I’m pretty?”
Alex felt like a deer caught in headlights. She was clever, he had to give her that.
So, He could say ‘yes’ and be embarrassed, or… he could say ‘no’ and make her angry. Of course, there was one more option.
“I… Have nothing to say on the subject.” Alex said simply.
“Well, let’s see if I can’t change your mind by the end of the day” Dash said confidently.
“Why…?” Alex asked, “What’s happening today?”
“Your first flying lesson!” Dash exclaimed, jumping in the air, and soaring around the room.
“But… Can’t I sleep a little longer?” Alex asked, falling back on to his pillow. “What time is it anyway?”
“6:00!” Dash said, landing next to the clock on the wall. “You know what they say! The early bird gets the Sonic Rainboom!”
“That doesn’t even rhym—“
“No arguments! Come on!” Dash said, smacking Alex’s rump through the blanket, earning a quiet whinny from him.
“Okay!” Alex said quickly jumping out from under the covers.
“That’s better!” She said with a grin. “Let’s go!”
Alex stood at attention in front of Rainbow Dash, who was wearing now wearing a black and white striped cap, with a whistle around her neck.
Dash had insisted that today would be the best for learning, since the weather was going to be clear most of the day.
And, with her patented flying methods, Dash was sure that Alex could make some head-way before the storm started. She had taught a couple of fillies to fly, but she had never had experience teaching a grown stallion with zero flight experience. Still, he had told her about his first time in this world, and how easily walking came to him. So, hopefully, flying would come naturally as well.
“Alright, listen up!” Dash said to him, “You’re here to learn how to fly, right?”
“Um… Yes?” Alex said slowly.
“Come oooon Spot!” Dash whined, with her usual voice crack. “You have to get pumped, or else this is going to take way longer!”
Alex wasn’t sure how true that statement was, but it couldn’t hurt!
“Alright!” Alex shouted, “Let’s do this!”
Dash grinned, happy to have him playing along.
“Good!” She said, snapping back to ‘coach mode’ “Let’s get to work!”
Things were going to be easy. Alex could feel it.
“Okay… One more time…” Dash said dejectedly, as she watched Alex pick himself up off the ground, again. “And remember, jumping doesn’t help! It only gets your face in the dirt!”
“What else am I doing wrong?” Alex asked, wiping some dirt off his face. He had been following every instruction he had been given to the letter. Flare your wings, beat them downward, and the rest should just… happen!
“You can’t be so stiff!” Dash said, “Loosen up!”
Alex breathed out, and shook his head back and forth. “Okay, here I go!”
Taking the stance he had been shown, Alex relaxed and flared his wings.
“Now, remember! Straight up and down!” Dash shouted to him.
Nodding to her, Alex started flapping up and down as quickly as he could, but, nothing was happening.
“Not so fast, and not so shallow!” Dash instructed, “Make slower, FULLER beats, just like I showed you!”
“But, I’ve read so many books on flying!” Alex said, “And they all say that beginners should flap their wings like this!” He said, adjusting his wings, and flapping differently.
“Alex, what did I say the LAST time you told me about books on flying?” Dash asked.
“That I should stop being an egghead..? “ Alex asked.
“Exactly!” Dash said, “Now, just like I showed you!”
Nodding again, Alex sighed started beating his wings up and down just as she had told him. However, he was still having zero luck.
“Just like that!” Dash encouraged. “Try to go a little faster!”
“Okay!” Alex said back to her, doing as she said.
Flapping faster, in the full strokes she had told him, he was surprised to feel himself becoming less attached to the ground. He wasn’t sure how he would ever be able to change this into full flight, but this was very promising for him.
“I can feel it working!” Alex shouted, with a beaming smile on his face.
Seeing the pure child-like excitement on Alex’s face, Dash couldn’t help but smile right back to him.
Flapping his wings harder, Alex could feel them starting to tire. So, he decided to go for broke, and go as fast as he could. And, just before they completely gave out from exhaustion, he felt himself lift away from the grass. It hadn’t been more than a quarter of an inch got a quarter of a second, and his wings burned like crazy, but he had definitely done it!
“I did it! I got off the ground!” Alex shouted, jumping up and down.
“I saw!” Dash said, happy to see her training methods working so well.
“Me too!” Pinkie said, running toward the two with a cupcake balanced on her forehead. “I made this to celebrate!”
Alex watched as she dropped in on the ground, and then bounced off, in her usual way.
Walking forward, Alex and Dash both inspected the top of the cupcake.
It read: ‘Congratulations on your first quarter of an inch of flight Alex!’ --Pinkie
Alex SHOULD have been confused, but, Pinkie had run into so many different situations with so many different baked goods, that he had grown numb to it all. As far as he was concerned, this was completely normal.
“Thanks Pinkie Pie!” Dash called to the now distant pony. Before turning to Alex with a stern look on her face, “Oh, and by the way, I’m putting you on a strict diet, so you can build muscle faster, and get higher off the ground!”
And with that, Dash leaned down and ate the cupcake.
“A Diet... Really?” Alex asked, not liking the sound of it.
“No. Not really,” Dash said, her mouth still full of cupcake. “I just wanted to eat your cupcake.”
“All you had to do was ask, I would have shared it with you.” Alex laughed,
“Yeah… But, I wanted all of it.” She said, after swallowing the last of it.
“Anyway,” Alex said, “How long until I’m able to actually fly?”
Dash thought for a moment. “I’d say… No more than a few weeks.”
This surprised Alex. He thought it would have been longer. “Is that really all?”
“Well, normally, fillies train for years, and learn to fly early…” Dash explained, “Their wings gain muscle, and with it, they’re able to lift themselves off the ground.”
“Okay…” Alex said, listening for more.
“But, if a Pegasus grows up, and never learns how to fly, their wings turn out weak, and unable to support flight.” Dash continued, “But, even though you’ve never flown, your wings look like they belong to a FLYING pony. Not a flightless one. So, all the muscle is there. All you have to do is learn how to use it properly.
Alex was surprised that Dash knew so much about flight. But, then again, it was her passion in life.
“So, you ready to keep trying?” Dash asked.
“Um… My wings actually feel like they’re on fire…” Alex confessed, “Do you mind if I sit down for a few minutes?”
Dash thought about it, then, decided that he should have to work for his breaks.
“I don’t know…” Dash said, “Maybe if somepony called me pretty… I’d let you sit down.”
Alex smirked. She was making this too easy for him.
Dash watched in confusion as Alex stood up, then walked over to the nearest pony to him, and whispered something in his ear.
“I think you’re pretty!” The pony shouted to her, after listening to Alex’s instruction.
“Wow!” Alex called, “Somepony called you pretty! Guess that means I can go lie down!”
And with that, Alex trotted away from the pony, and back in to the library.
She had to admit, He was good.
After a moment, the pony who had called her pretty walked over to her.
“Sorry if I inconvenienced you at all.” The pony said to her.
“Naaa, it’s fine.” Dash said, laughing lightly as she looked up to him. “Hey… I don’t think I’ve seen you around… What’s your name?”
“Oh, I’m the Doctor.” The pony said to her, extending his hoof.
“Nice to meet you, Doctor!” Dash said shaking it, with a smile, “I’m Rainbow Dash!”
“Say…” The Doctor said slowly, “What can you tell me about your friend…?”