Rainbow Dash awoke to the constant sound of a monotone beep, her mind still reeling over the events that had transpired over the last day. Even though the tone rang in her head, making her migraine that much worse, the pain and the heart monitor let her know that she was still alive. She was in a single patient room, the walls a sterile white, with various instruments lining the walls. To one side of the room, there was an A/C system pouring cold air into her room. On the other, there was a metal door with a small wire reinforced glass window in the center.
She leaned her head back onto a soft feather pillow, clenching her eyes shut in an attempt to purge her mind. Dash pulled her leg up to rub her face, but the leg felt... different. There was a large bandage wrapped around it, but it seemed much heavier that it had been before. She shrugged the feeling off, touching her hoof to her face. It was much harder than she had remembered, and also seemed to be chilled. Now that she had began to think about her leg, the entire thing felt the same way. It felt like her bones were cold, a sensation that she had never felt before. She continued to examine her leg, not noticing anything else out of the ordinary.
A white mare entered the room, looking down at a clipboard she was holding in her hooves. Not wanting to be seen awake, Dash did her best at faking sleep. She closed her eyes lightly and let her hoof drop down to her side, nearly making her scream in extensive pain. The nurse shot her a quick glance, thinking she had heard some sort of commotion coming from Rainbow Dash. She looked back down to the clipboard and walked over to Dash's bedside, changing her IV's and altering some information on the papers she had been holding. The nurse glances at Dash before talking, noticing that her eyes were cracked open just enough to spy on her.
“Ms. Dash, there is nothing wrong with being awake.”
Rainbow Dash continued to play possum, hoping that the nurse would be fooled by her acts. She tried to fool her, but there was no sign that the nurse that was letting up.
“I know you're awake, and since you are Ms. Dash, I need to ask you a few questions,” she told Rainbow Dash.
Rainbow huffed in defeat, sitting up in her bed. “Ugh, whatever. Just ask –” Dash said as she screamed in agony, accidentally putting all of her weight onto her bandaged leg.
“Ms. Dash, you need to be more careful with that leg. You don't want to loosen any of the plates in there,” the nurse told her.
“Wait, plates? Why do I have plates in my leg? It's not like I plan on eating it anytime soon,” she said, her voice dripping with sarcasm.
The nurse glanced at Dash, not amused with her tone. “Not those kind of plates. Metal Plates. You have pieces of metal in you leg to make sure that it stays together and upright. Its going to be painful for a few months, but you'll be able to get back on it eventually.”
“That is is awesome!” Dash yelled, throwing her hooves into the air without thinking. “Ow...”
“Your leg may also feel cold, but that is just normal. Now I need to ask you a few questions, if that is OK with you.”
“Yeah, shoot doc.”
The nurse flipped through the pages of paperwork, pulling out a pencil and preparing to write. “So, how are you feeling Ms. Dash? Any headaches or pain?”
“My head hurts, and so does my body a little bit,” she told her, rubbing her own ribcage.
“OK, that means that the painkillers should be working just fine, so that's ok,” the nurse old her. “Do you mind if I ask something a bit more personal?”
Dash looked down, contemplating on what the right thing to do would be. She opened her mouth to speak, but only air came out. Her mouth opened again, this time a voice breaking the silence. “Yeah,” she sighed, “go ahead.”
“So, you are in a relationship with somepony, right?”
She blushed heavily, “No. Well, yes, but not really... so no?” she said questionably.
“That may be your problem there, Ms. Dash. Ever since you removed your Soul Feather, it seems that you haven't been entirely yourself. This could have been caused by your confusion over whether or not you are a couple, or at least that is what is implied,” she told Dash, flipping through some more papers and taking notes.
“There's just one thing about my special somepony though...”
“Go on,” the nurse insisted.
“Well, it's kinda a mare.”
The nurse looked at her with an awkward smile, not sure what to say to Rainbow Dash to make the situation feel exactly right. She took a moment to think, shuffling through some more papers before standing up.
“I'm not exactly a psychiatrist, Ms. Dash, but I do know someone who may be able to help you with how you're feeling.”
Rainbow glared at her angrily, “I don't need help with how I'm feeling! I know exactly who I am!” She yelled at the nurse.
“Tell me then, Ms. Dash, why was it you acted the way you did?” she retorted back, leaving Dash baffled and speechless.
She continued to walk away from Dash, leaving her mouth agape. The nurse left the room, and just as it had been before, the room fell into a silence only broken by a constant beep. Dash laid her head back and shifted her body to attempt to get into a more comfortable position, but it was to no avail. Her mind was full of thought, teeming with activity although it had wanted to sleep. It had tried to be cleared multiple times, but each time she did that, it seemed like more was added to her already packed mind. She wanted to rest, but she just couldn't. It was like she needed someone here, someone to lull her to sleep as her parents once did with stories of ancient kingdoms and adventures. But there was one story that had always stuck in her mind, that was the story of the love between a Prince and his Princess.
A little blue filly flew into bed and under her covers in a split-second, her father following not far behind her into her room. Wonderbolts posters hung from every surface in the room, showing a major obsession with the flying group. Action figures lay strewn across the ground, the father nearly crushing them as he carefully waded through the toys. He grabbed a stool and dragged it over next to the fillies bed, tossing the toys off of it. The cyan filly fidgeted in her bed, getting ready for another story time that she always impatiently awaited.
“So, Dashie. What story do you want to hear tonight?” the dark blue colt asked her, his silver hair gleaming in the light.
“I want to hear the one about the feather! You said you'd tell me that one over a month ago!”
“I guess I did,” he said in a defeated tone. He started after taking a deep breath and putting his mind to a narrating voice. “Once, in the far outstretches of Equestria, even before the reign Celestia, there was a young colt who watched over the his own little village, taking care of his friends and family and protecting them from any dangers that came their way. He lived to protect those he held dear, but there was one who he longed to be with since he was a young colt.
“He saw her everyday, looking upon the mountainside where her castle sat peacefully throughout the ages. He lived everyday thinking about this beautiful mare, and eventually there came a day where he could no longer stand to keep his love a secret. He devised a plan to let the Princess know of his love, but under anonymity.”
“What's anon...onin...imity?” Dash asked her father.
“It means that she wont know who sent it, only the pony who sent it will know its true owner,” he explained to her, continuing on with the story. “He wrote to her, explaining his undying love and longing to be with her. He wrote the letter in an elegant stroke of penmanship, sealing it with wax a kissing the seal, leaving this imprint among the letter. Before the seal dried, he plucked a single feather from his wing, pressing it into the wax.
“He delivered it under the protection of night, leaving it at the front of the castle for the guards to find and deliver it to the Princess. He headed to his home, sneaking in and quickly falling asleep under the lunar light. What he had not expected, however, is the bond that the feather had created between the two of them. The Princess had received the letter at about the time of his departure, and flattered by the words of the elegant colt, she stuck the feather in her mane. She told her guards to search the nearby villages for anypony who had that same colored feather, while she slept with the feather still stuck in her mane.
“They both dreamed that night, but it wasn't of sunny fields and pretty flowers, but one another. They met each other for the first time in dream, the beauty of each pony captivating the other. They stood in silence throughout the dream until morning came, when they awoke. Memories of their counterpart flowed through their minds, creating a bridge that let each others emotions and feelings flow outwards. The guards returned from their search unsuccessful, but the Princess had her own idea of where he may have been. For her, it was almost as if he was speaking to her directly and telling her where his tiny village was.
“The Princess arrived in his village one day, each pony bowing to her. All, but one. He stood determined to finally speak to her, no matter what the consequences or repercussions may have been. He walked through the crowds, his hooves shaking with each step towards her. His heart started racing, and a small bead of sweat began to form on his forehead. He approached her, kneeling in the dirt, and letting forth his feelings. 'Princess,' he said, 'I am in love with you; I have watched you from afar and I have had dreams of you ever since the night I had left my feather at your gate. If anything I have done has offended you, I will take any punishment deemed necessary.'
She then spoke after processing his words in her mind. Her voice was that of a thousand angels, echoing beautifully through the village. 'Sir, I may not even know you rightful name, but your words have captivated me beyond belief. I have seen you, as well, in my dreams and I would feel best if you could come with me and live in my palace, next to my side as the King of our land.' He turned back towards the crowd, who looked onto him with eyes worrying of abandonment. He turned back towards the Princess, 'I'm sorry, your highness, but I cannot simply leave my village. This is where I need to be, they need my protection. But thank you for your offer, I am truly humbled.'
He turned to walk away, back towards his home before she spoke again. 'Then that shall be, my love. By those means, I do request to stay here with you.' He turned back, running towards her. 'We can make accomodations,' He told her pressing his lips to her, giving her a deep kiss.”
“Ewwww!” Rainbow said making a gag face.
“And then they went on to live together, happily ever after and rebuilding the village. The end,” he said speedily.
“Daaaaaaaaaad!” Dash whined, “That's not the end of the story!”
“I know it isn't, but the rest is a story saved for another night. Just remember,” he said, pulling her wing out slightly and pointing, “that we all have this feather that can let us connect with the ones we love. Just remember, that it isn't understood what can happen when you do give somepony your Soul Feather, so be sure they are the one that you truly love before you even think about it. Now, to bed with you!” he said, tickling Dash.
“G'night, Daddy. I love you,” she told him with a warm smile.
“I love you too, Dashie,” he said as he left the room, blowing out the candle and closing the door.
Dash wiped the tears that she had leaked from her eyes, remembering that that was the last story her father had told to her as a filly. That was the most memorable story that he had ever told her, and that was why she had given it to Fluttershy. Rainbow Dash felt as if she was the one, the only one in the world for her. She sighed, thinking that Fluttershy may not actually be the one. Dash shook her head. NO! Fluttershy is the one, she told herself. She sniffled and wiped the mucus from her face on her hoof. The door swung open as a brown colt walked into the room, followed by a pink maned, yellow coated pony.
“Fluttershy?” she asked, more tears flowing from her eyes.