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Rainbow Dash staggered through the muddy depths of the Everfree Forest. Her wings were numb, her eyes were sore with tears and her mane was matted to her head with sweat. She stopped at the next lake she found, slowly diving and landing on the muddy ground. She rocked from side to side, desperately trying to ignore the merciless screaming infesting her . She started breaking down into tears, unable to fight against the evil barrage attacking her mind. Hiccups started to engulf her already sore throat, causing an explosion of pain with each one. She had reached her limit. She couldn't take it anymore.
"They know!! THEY ALL KNOW!!"
"P-pl *hic* ease. ..... J-j-just *hic* g-go away."
" *hic* NO!!.
"KILL THEM NOW!!"
She knew nopony could hear her, so she screamed as loud and as hard as her lungs would allow her, trying to relieve all the pain that had built up inside her over the past few hours. Her screams echoed through the hollow trees around her, complimenting the sheer volume of the strangled cry. She screamed and screamed for as long as she could, before she could no longer stand the excruciating pain that engulfed her throat.
She took a deep breath and collapsed onto the floor, her legs unable to cope with the pain circulating throughout her body . Laying on her side, barely conscious, she looked into her reflection in the water, a fragile blue pegasus staring back at her. It was still her, that was least one glimmer of hope the poor pegasus had, but for how long? She stared at herself with barely enough energy to breath. Just then, for a split second, she saw Applejack in the reflection of the water. Rainbow Dash shrieked as she saw the gruesome image of Applejack stood over her , equipped with a large, bloody knife, with an insane grin spread out across her face. Rainbow Dash recognized the grin, it was the grin she wore when she broke down and murdered Pinkie Pie.
Rainbow Dash quickly darted her eyes across the forest, but saw nopony else there, and so she looked back into the water. At first there was nothing there, but, as she stared into the dirty water, somepony began to form in front of her. No, not somepony. She knew who it was. It was herself, staring at back at her with a mad smile, an otherworldly blackness booming from within her eyes. Rainbow Dash recoiled at the sight, fear grasping her heart.
"Hello! .... BOO!! Hahahahaha!!"
Rainbow Dash summoned what energy she had left to pull herself away from the river, before crawling towards the nearest tree and cowering in a muddy puddle, covering her eyes with her hoofs.
"N-no. *hic* NO!! *hic* .... Please. Go away. I-I-I did what you *hic* said last time! Just go away!!"
The familiar voice sent a shiver down her spine. Rainbow looked up, her eyes glazed with tears, to see Applejack looking at her, her face contorted in a mixture of confusion and sadness. Rainbow could barely speak without the stinging pain in her throat cutting her off.
"Nothing! *hic* Nothing." Rainbow Dash wheezed. She tried to compose herself, but was unable to stop looking back at the lake behind her.
Applejack walked over to her. Rainbow was paralysed with fear, not knowing what her sick mind was going to make her do. She closed her eyes as tight as she could, desperately trying to flush out the relentless voices screaming at her from within her already fragile mind.
"No! *hic* D-don't! St-"
Applejack pulled Rainbow close to her and wrapped her arms around the blue Pegasus. Applejack then placed her right hoof on her head, gently stroking her colourful, yet ruined, mane.
"It's okay sugar." Applejack sighed, tears still flowing from her eyes. "It's okay to cry."
Rainbow felt .... calm. The voices ceased for the first time in months. She couldn't believe it! She could finally think with a clear mind, without the fear of the voices that usually plagued her thoughts. Overcome with joy she wrapped her arms around Applejack and squeezed her tight.
"Unf! .... Hey. It's alright."
"I'm sorry." Rainbow Dash sobbed. "I'm so *hic* so sorry."
Applejack cradled Rainbow's head in her arms, holding it firmly, as she looked into her pained magenta eyes.
"Now you listen Rainbow." Applejack said with a stern voice. "You have absolutely nothing to be sorry for. It was ..... some sick pony who took her life. Not you. You remember that."
Rainbow couldn't bare to look into the earth pony's eyes. The horrific combination of fear, anger and unbearable guilt almost made Rainbow scream right in her face. If only she knew. What would it do to her if she realised that her best friend was a heartless killer, that she is trying to comfort the pony who took Pinkie's life.
But she didn't know. Rainbow just started grinding her teeth, trying to savour every last second of the temporary peace she was experiencing.
"There, there Rainbow." Applejack patted her head gently. "It's okay. I'll always be here for you, you hear me? I know how much Pinkie meant to you. Consarnit she was my best friend too! And I'll be darned if I'm going to loose another one."
"I. .... I'm *hic* sorry."
Rainbow Dash smiled. It had been so long since she last did that she had almost forgotten how to. Applejack smiled back.
"Say sorry one more time and I'm gonna smack yah."
They both quietly laughed, before slowly leaning into each other. They remained in a long embrace, as the night slowly passed on.