Two pegasi stallion ponies, who had just entered the park, rushed towards the Rainboom water slide in hopes that they would be able to beat the possibility of having to wait in a long line to ride.
“Dude, hurry!” said the stallion with brown mane and tan coat.
“I’m going, I’m going!” said the stallion with the dark brown coat and the crème colored mane.
“I knew we should have arrived earlier,” said the first stallion. Who knows how many ponies are waiting to get on by now?!”
His question was answered when they finally approached the entrance, and only saw one pony in front of it.
“Sweet Celestia! I can’t believe it. Dumb-Bell look, no line!” said the tan colored stallion.
“It’s a miracle, Hoops!” Dumb-Bell responded.
Both pegasi approached the entrance and met the cyan pegasus that was already in front of the entrance, wearing the waterproof vest that restrained her wings against her body.
The cyan pegasus noticed the two who approached her, and immediately recognized them as her old school-mates who went to flight school with her. She lowered her expression to one of slight annoyance, obviously showing that she is not in favor of bumping into these nitwits.
“Well, well, well! Look who it is! It’s Rainbow!” Hoops said once he noticed the prismatic mane pegasus.
“What are you doing out here and not on the slide?” Dumb-Bell asked.
Rainbow simply pointed a hoof at a small sign that hung between the two poles that held up the ride sign, and blocked anypony from entering the line.
The two looked at what she pointed at, and then they both stood shocked at what it read.
“Closed?!?!” Dumb-Bell said.
“What do you mean closed?!” Hoops asked afterwards. It was surprising that he could have read the sign anyways since his brown mane covered his eyes.
“They said there’s some sort of a leaky pipe or something,” Rainbow responded. “I’ve been waiting out here for them to fix it ever since I came in.”
“How long ago was that?” Hoops asked, curious as to how long she had been waiting and to how long the ride has been down.
“They said it’s been this way since this morning. I can’t remember how long ago it was, but it’s definitely felt like over an hour.”
“An hour?” Dumb-Bell said, quite surprised that the mare’s been out here for that long. “You’ve been waiting out here for the ride to open for an hour?”
“Yep, and I’m not moving until it does,” Rainbow responded matter-of-factly.
The two stallions looked at each other, then to Rainbow, then up at the slide.
“So you’re just gonna stand there?” Hoops asked. “There are other slides in the park you can get on ya know.”
Rainbow rolled her eyes at having been told this twice. “Yeah, I know that. I’m just making sure that I’m going to be the first one to ride the Rainboom before any other pony.”
“Whatever you say,” Hoops said while shrugging. “We’re gonna come back once the ride opens... IF the ride ever opens.”
“Have fun,” Rainbow said sarcastically.
The two stallions left Rainbow alone to wait in front of the Rainboom’s entrance. While they left, they started discussing what other slide to get on next.
Rainbow Dash had returned to pacing back and forward in front of the slide again once the two stallions left. Her frustration level slowly grew as time continued. “Come on, open already,” she said quietly.
Fluttershy slowly dipped a hoof into the water in an attempt to get used to the temperature. She continued to sink it in until the water reached her knee, where she yanked her hoof back out of the water.
“There’s just no way, it’s too cold,” she said out loud to herself. She stared out at the moving water and the ponies floating lazily along it. “I wonder how those other ponies did it.”
“Simple, you just jump in!”
Fluttershy was mildly startled by somepony behind her answering a question that was mostly directed to herself. She turned around to see who answered her question, and she saw a mint green unicorn trot up to stand beside her.
Fluttershy recognized her as another resident of Ponyville, and lightened up. “Lyra! It’s so nice to meet you here.”
“Likewise!” Lyra responded. “And about the water, you just need to get in immediately so your body can get used to it.”
“A-are you sure. I don’t know if I can handle it.” Fluttershy looked down at the crystal clear water, hesitant on giving it another try.
Lyra tried to be helpful in movitating the shy pegasus to get in. “Sure you can. If those ponies can do it, then so can you. Just watch.”
Fluttershy watched as Lyra entered the pool immediately without hesitation. She was submerged up to her shoulder by the time she reached out to hold on to a hand rail so she wasn’t swept away by the slow but strong current.
She stuttered as she spoke. “S-s-see, n-n-no-nothing t-t-to it!” She was clenching her teeth as she forced a reassuring smile towards Fluttershy. “N-n-now y-you tt-t-try!”
Fluttershy easily noticed Lyra shivering in the waters and was thinking about turning tail right then and there. But she still wanted to give the lazy river a try. All she had to do was get over the freezing temperature of the water. She gave it a thought before she breathed in deeply and let her confidence take over.
She trotted down the first few steps and immediately sunk her hoof in just like the first time she tried to enter. She didn’t stop this time when the bitter cold water stung her legs, and didn’t stop when her chest was submerged as well.
She bit her bottom lip as she braved the temperature with all her might. She looked at Lyra, who smiled back at her.
“Good job Fluttershy! You’re in!” Lyra said.
Fluttershy smiled at Lyra’s compliment. She then took a few more steps into the lazy river, before she was swept off of her feet and into the current. She yelped and flailed her hooves splashing the water, having not expect the current to be so strong.
She stopped panicking once she felt Lyra’s hoof across her back. “Woah, calm down Fluttershy, it’s okay! You can stand up in the water you know,” Lyra said. Fluttershy then reached down and felt the bottom of the river. She began to walk when she got more comfortable moving with the current.
Lyra let go of Fluttershy. “There you go! Now let’s find a raft.”
Both ponies treaded against the current in an attempt to slow themselves enough to find an inner tube that they could float on. After they avoided bumping into other ponies that passed them, they found two stray doughnut-shaped tubes floating towards them.
Fluttershy got hold of one of the rafts and lifted it over her head. She put her fore-hooves through the hole under it and held on to it so it could support her weight.
She glanced at Lyra and saw that she had jumped out of the water to lie on top of her raft on her back and allow her flank to rest in the hole in the middle of the inner-tube.
“This is great, isn’t it?” Lyra asked Fluttershy.
Fluttershy didn’t answer. She simply allowed the water to drift her in the direction it took them. She noticed that the water didn’t feel as cold as it did when she first entered the river, which made her feel very relaxed.
Lyra leaned back and closed her eyes to bask in the mixture of sunlight and shade as they slowly passed many tropical trees and bushes.
“So Fluttershy,” Lyra began. “I didn’t take you to be the kind of pony who would want to come to a place like this. Did you try any water slides yet?”
Fluttershy responded with her usual inside voice, almost to a level where it’s hard to hear what she’s saying. “Oh, no. I’m not here for the water slides. Pinkie and Rainbow Dash are riding them and Applejack and I are relaxing a little.”
“She’s taking a nap at the place where we dropped off our things.”
“Well, you should probably try at least one of the slides. I’m sure there’s one here you might like.”
“Oh, I don’t know. I mean, I’m not too keen on thrills. Especially the ones that are, um, thrilling.”
“Aww, come on Fluttershy.” Lyra sat up as she spoke. “You gotta try something other than the lazy river. I know you’re scared of them, but you gotta live a little. You need to get over your fears and try something exciting for once.”
Fluttershy thought about this a little as she gazed at the lush scenery around her. She looked upon the fully grown scrub palms and saw palmettos that sat at the edges of the lazy river. The pointy leaves looked as sharp as knives.
Fluttershy looked back at Lyra, who was waiting for an answer. “I might consider it,” Fluttershy finally said.
“Good to hear, Fluttershy. Like I said, I’m sure there’s one in here you’ll like. There’s plenty to choose from.” Lyra then leaned back into her relaxed position, closed her eyes, and put her hooves behind her head.
Fluttershy continued to think about facing her fears and riding a water slide. “Which water slide could I try?” She thought to herself. “Should I try one of the big ones… no, no, that just won’t do. Maybe I should find a small one, just to get used to them. Yeah. No harm in trying one that isn’t big and scary like…” She glanced up at the Rainboom, which is still noticeable no matter where she or any other pony is in the park. “Uhh… yeah! Definitely not one like that.”
She nervously chuckled at the thought of her trying the Rainboom or one of the two slides around it.
“I wonder if Rainbow or Pinkie has been on it yet,”
Pinkie yelled as she and Vinyl Scratch were tossed and turned in a double seat inner tube that was flying down the chute of another water slide they had boarded. Corner after corner, dip after dip, they swung left and right as they quickly progressed down the unforgiving fiberglass flume.
“INCOMING!” Sitting in the front seat, Vinyl yelled and pointed straight ahead to warn Pinkie that something was about to come.
“What is i-” Pinkie was cut off when the two riders shot through a waterfall that was cleverly placed directly in the middle of the chute.
Both riders wiped the water out of their eyes. Once their vision was clear, they both suddenly noticed that they were approaching a drop very quickly.
“Here we go!” Vinyl yelled.
Soon the two mares were sent over the edge, floating slightly out of their inflated tube as they went down the drop.
This time, both mares yelled. “WAAAA HOOOO!”
Celestia’s sun was no longer in the middle of the sky, but it was still shining brightly over the land from its position closer west. The breeze that had been blowing through the park ceased, thus the sound of rattling leaves of the palm trees were removed from the ambience of rushing water and ponies having a fun time in the summer heat.
One pony’s voice, however, was not being added to the fun ambience. Rainbow Dash continued to reserve her fun for a specific water slide in the park. She stood waiting for the Rainboom water slide to open so she could still claim the spot of being the first pony to ride it.
She had been waiting for this day to come for over a week. Ever since she read the brochure for the water park she found in her mail box, she felt that the water park was practically calling her name. She felt especially excited about visiting when she read about the Rainboom speed slide within the brochure. The boring statistical facts that filled an entire page, the reviews from critics saying that the slides were too dangerous to be opened, and the one photo of the water park once being blanketed with morning fog, and the Rainboom slide tower was the only structure within the park that stuck out above the thick ground clouds.
Since she was low on money, she thought she would travel with a group and pay them back at a later date when she had enough bits. She had first asked ponies in her weather patrol team that she thought might like to visit, but was turned down by all of them when some said they were going with their family and friends, and others said they were not going at all. She then turned to Applejack, who agreed if Rainbow assisted her in bucking apples from trees to make up for the time they would be gone.
So Rainbow wasn’t left to go alone with just Applejack, she also went to Fluttershy. She, of course, refused to go when she saw the brochure and the many thrilling water slides that adorned its many pages. But Rainbow then mentioned about the lazy that was within the park, and told her that she didn’t have to ride the water slides if she didn’t want to. After that Fluttershy agreed to go.
When the morning came, Rainbow woke up extra early to wake up her friends that would be accompanying her on the trip. Applejack was easy to get up due to her being a farmer that wakes up at the crack of dawn, and Fluttershy didn’t prove to be too difficult to get up as well. Unfortunately, Futtershy had to find somepony at the last minute to take care of the animals in her home while she was gone, which was what delayed the group from being early to getting to the park.
They set off in a hurry after Fluttershy got Junebug to watch her cottage. By the time they arrived at the park, they found the enormous line to get in, and that’s where it all started.
Rainbow Dash wasn’t going to waste a week of waiting for this day to come by not keeping her promise of being able to call herself the first rider on the Rainboom speed slide. She would be able to go back to her pegasi friends at the weather patrol and brag all about it in their faces and watch them feel bad for not going to the water park with her in the first place. That part was sure to be fun.
Unfortunately, that part is starting to seem increasingly distant the longer she waits in front of the entrance for the park to repair the ‘leaky pipe’ that’s keeping the ride closed indefinitely. Rainbow’s frustration level continued to grow as she waited in front of the ride. She paced to and from the entrance to the slide, occasionally glancing upwards at the tall structure of fiberglass that stretched all the way from the top to the ground.
Rainbow was still grunting and pacing, when she heard the sound of another pony approaching. She looked up to see an old stallion with an orange vest and a tool box walking toward the entrance to the slide. The top of his pale yellow striped mane was thinning, and his brown face was almost as wrinkly as Applejack’s grandmother, Granny Smith.
He looked at Rainbow once he approached, and gave a warm smile. His accent was quite western and worn with his age. “We-he-hell, what do we have here? Somepony’s quite eager to be the first one on it, now isn’t she?!”
Rainbow could already guess he was the pony responsible for getting the slide into operation, but wanted to be sure. “Uhh, I’m guessing you’re the mechanic that’s here to fix the ride, right?”
“I sure am,” he said quite proudly. “I’m gonna get this puppy workin’ in no time, just you wait!”
Rainbow was a little heated at the fact that the mechanic was now arriving to fix the slide. “I’ve been waiting here all morning for you to do your job. Where have you been?” she near-yelled back.
“Now, calm down there, missy. I’m here now, aren’t I? Besides, you don’ have to wait for me to fix one slide for you to have fun; there are other slides in this park you can get on.”
Rainbow Dash face-hoofed. This was the third time she was told that, and it’s gotten old fast. “Look, can you just get the slide going. Please?” she asked.
“Alright, alright. I’ll see what I can do.” He ducked his head under the small hanging ‘closed for maintenance’ sign as he headed towards the back of the entrance, and disappear behind a bushel of trees to where the busted pipe must have been.
Rainbow watched him as he left. She was still frustrated that somepony wasn’t working on it the entire time she was waiting at the entrance, but she also felt relieved that somepony was finally working on it.
Maybe she was going to get to brag to her pegasi friends after all.
“Come on, Fluttershy! You can do it!”
“I… I can’t.”
“Yes you can. Just do it, you’ll be fine. Trust me.”
“I don’t know if… I just… it’s too big!”
“No it’s not. You can handle it as easy as I did. It’s not that big.”
“I… uh… oh dear!”
“Just push yourself Fluttershy, come on!”
“… uh… okay… here I come.”
Fluttershy sat down and gently pushed herself forward on the slippery fiberglass surface. She rode down the dip and made a small splash in the 3 inch deep water.
“I… I did it…” Fluttershy mused out-loud.
“You sure did!” Lyra responded.
Fluttershy stood back up and turned around to look back at her first water slide. It was a simple red water slide that started on a platform no taller than her head. After she moved out of the way, a little filly came down the small slide.
Even though her first water slide was in a very shallow wading pool near the back of the waterpark and was built for fillies, she was proud of the fact that she rode one. “I really did it, didn’t I?”
“I told you it would be alright,” Lyra said, trying her best to be supportive. “And the other slides are just like this one but longer, that’s all.”
“Oh, well, if they’re not as bad as this, then I guess I wouldn’t mind trying another.”
“That’s the spirit! There’s another I want you to try with me. It’s right over here.” Lyra started trotting in the direction of the next slide she wanted to get on with Fluttershy to help her get over her fear of them.
Fluttershy thought to herself as she followed. “That wasn’t scary at all… that was… fun! I guess this is the excitement Rainbow was talking about when she wanted to get on the bigger slides. I can only imagine what it must be like to get on those.” Fluttershy looked at the other slides that were visible from the area she was in. She saw the water playground that had a large dump bucket that looked like a coconut on top of it, many built-in spray guns, and long colorful body slides that wound out of it and ended in a small pool of water. She observed another more thrilling slide near it where ponies shot out of a tunnel after picking up speed and slid around in circles on the inner-walls of a bowl shaped flume, before they would then slide down a hole in the middle of the bowl and fall into into a deep pool underneath.
She also looked at the backside of the tall towering speed slide structure. She studied the tight curvatures of the yellow tunnels of the Filly Flashes, and the steep drop angle of the prismatic Rainboom slide. She wondered how much excitement those slides produced.
Lyra stopped and began speaking to Fluttershy. “Okay, I know it’s quite a step up from what you just got off of, but I’m sure this one will be fun to try.” She then pointed to another water slide.
The Swirling Hayseed was its name, and it was much different than the slide Fluttershy got off of. It was obviously larger too. The blue flume was very wide and it stretched a longer distance than most of the other water slides in the park. Riders came down the wide chute in groups bigger than two and were within large yellow circular rafts facing inward at each other.
Fluttershy gazed at the large water slide, and felt her shivers return. “Oh… umm... are you sure about this?”
Lyra stepped a little closer to Fluttershy. “Fluttershy, I want you to take a good look at the ponies occupying the next raft that comes down the slide.”
Fluttershy glanced at where the slide ended in a pool. She saw a raft come around the last corner and ride down a small dip before splashing into the pool. There was a family inside the raft, and they were all smiling and laughing as they disembarked the circular raft. Two small fillies got out of the raft first before the parents did.
“You see that Fluttershy?” Lyra pointed towards the happy family. “Those fillies and colts liked it. I’m sure you would too.”
Fluttershy took notice of the young ponies. She signed before she spoke. “Okay. I guess I can try it.”
Lyra grinned. “Really?”
“Great, let’s go!” lyra lead Fluttershy towards the entrance and up the first flight of stairs that led to the top of the structure where riders boarded.