With the setting sun slowly fading over the horizon, a soft orange glow was cast across the six ponies sitting at the dining room table. On one side sat Sunny, Rainbow, and Ace. Bon Bon, Twilight, and Lyra sat opposite to them. The tension was thick with, what seemed like, hostility.
“Rainbow, I'm sorry for what...” Twilight began, but Dash quickly shifted her gaze away from her former marefriend. Her eyes started to well up with fresh tears, but she fought against them. “... what I did. It was wrong of me, and I knew that it would probably hurt you. I just felt so... so... bottled up! Like I was about to explode! I love you and I can't take not being able to tell anypony!”
Rainbow gave a sigh and looked towards Twilight. She could see the sadness, the hurt she had caused the purple unicorn. Everything she had done, she had done out of her love. But she didn't listen to what I told her. Then, and when I left the note at my house. I told her NOT to come find me! Her new found anger blinded her once again to Twilight's true intentions. “You didn't listen to the ONE thing I asked of you!” She was raising her voice, causing her marefriend to recoil. “I even said not to come find me! I would come see you when I was ready! Yet, here you are!” She slumped down in her chair, grinding her teeth.
She could hold them back no longer, and the tears once more started to flow down Twilight's cheeks. Bon Bon quickly gave her a hug, in an effort to comfort her.
Sunny stood up, trying to help in any way possible. “Fillies, it's quite late and Rainbow does get quite irritable if she's tired.” A glare came from the pegasus next to her. “How about we all take a good night's rest and talk about this in the morning?”
Twilight, seeming to have regained a bit of composure, nodded while sniffling. “That sounds like a good idea. We'll just get out of your mane...”
“Nonsense!” It was Ace's turn to speak up. “Wedgeworth can show you to the spare bedrooms. No need to find other accommodations.”
The three fillies thanked Dash Sr. for his generosity and filed out to find where they would sleep. Rainbow also tried to get up and leave, but she was stopped at the door. “You aren't going anywhere until you explain just what is going on here.”
With her head low, Dash turned and walked back to the table. She sat down, and told her father everything. How Twilight had asked her to lunch, the night under the stars, the running of the leaves, everything. When she was done, she once more braced herself for a harsh reaction. One that, again, didn't come.
Ace sighed and placed a hoof on Rainbow's shoulder. “It sounds to me like you're being the selfish one in this relationship.”
There was a muffled *thump* as Dash's jaw hit the table. “Wait, you aren't mad either!?”
Ace just laughed. “Why would I be? You're my daughter, I'll always love you!” He nuzzled her neck. “Anyways, I've always had my suspicions... I just wish you had told me earlier instead of hiding it.”
“But, won't the other Cloudsdale elite look down on you for having a daughter that's a... a... fillyfooler?”
“The better question, sweetie, is would I really care.” He smiled, and continued. “Besides, we aren't those snobby Canterlot elite.”
Rainbow managed a smile as well, and stood up once again. “You have no idea how relieved that makes me.” She turned to leave the room. “Wait, you wouldn’t be able to have any relationship advice, would you?”
“Well, all I know is that your mother and I have stayed together for so long because of how honest we were with each other. Secrets and hidden emotions just build up walls between those you care, you need to let it all go.” Ace smiled and waved his hoof at the door. “Now, it’s late. Why don’t you head on off to bed. I’m sure you could use the rest.”
Dash nodded was gone up the stairs in a flash. “Hehe, that's my girl...”
Twilight awoke late in the morning. The sun was already high in the sky, and sounds from the kitchen could be heard. She slowly rolled out of bed and stood up, making sure to make her bed before leaving. She slowly trotted down the stairs, still blinking the remnants of sleep from her eyes.
She entered the dining room and stopped dead. It was so much bigger, so much nicer in the daylight. The morning light shone into the room, illuminating all of the cloud surfaces and causing them to give off a brilliant white glow. Twilight shook her head, and focused on the task at hoof. Reasoning with Dash. She went to walk in but was quickly stopped by a rumbling in her belly. Alright, breakfast first... she thought.
It seems that everypony was already up and sitting at the table, and they all seemed to be talking to one another. Everypony, except for Rainbow. She sat to one side, quietly munching at some cornflakes.
“Well, good morning Twilight!” Sunny called as she noticed the purple unicorn standing there. “Come sit down and let Wedgeworth get you something to eat!”
She walked to the table and settled down. In no time, Wedgeworth was standing next to her and awaiting her order. She muttered something about toast, and he left in a flash to fix it for her.
Now that everypony was seated and calm, more or less, Ace motioned for Dash to move closer. “Twilight, Rainbow and I had a nice little chat last night.” The aforementioned pegasus shifted, trying to show her displeasure. Ace took no notice. “She told me everything that had been happening, and I think I got a hoof on it.”
Sunny took over for her husband. “Rainbow has always been concerned with her image. She wanted to be the fastest, the coolest, the one everypony looked up to. She really felt that if the town, or even her friends, knew about her true self that they wouldn't like her anymore.”
“I'm sorry to interrupt,” Twilight said “... but I already knew this. I was trying to help her get over her fear.”
Ace just chuckled. “Our little Dash has always been quite stubborn, and even I can rarely change her mind. She just needs to see that what you did was for the best, and that you care.”
“I... I know...” Dash whispered. “I was just so... so scared. Scared of everything. No matter what face I put on, every day I feared somepony would meet the real me. If I hadn't trusted Bon Bon completely, if she hadn't been my oldest friend, I wouldn't have been able to live in Ponyville with her.”
Bon Bon was slightly taken aback. “Dashie, you have no idea how much this means to me!”
Dash smiled and looked to her friend. “Well, I know you stood by for me in the past, and that’s just what you’re doing now. How couldn’t I trust you?” She paused a moment to gather her thoughts. As she did, Twilight's toast arrived. Nopony noticed. “I really care about you Twilight, and I am happy with you. I just wasn't able to overcome my fear. My parents being so understanding helped me see past that. They showed me that most ponies won't care about who I like, as long as I stay as who I am.”
Twilight held the tears back, but rushed around the table to meet her marefriend. “I'm sorry for everything Rainbow! I'll never hurt you like that again!”
“It’s not your fault, really. I’m the one to blame.”
Twilight leaned back from the hug. “Are we really going to start arguing over this?”
Dash smiled and pulled her marefriend in tight. “Just forget it. I love you, Twilight.”
“Oh, I love you too!” Twilight said, squeezing back.
Lyra lay her head on Bon Bon's shoulder, gazing at the couple. “Kinda reminds you of us, doesn't it?”
The candy pony just looked at her marefriend. “When did anything like this ever happen to us?!”
The meal was short-lived after the chat, with both pairs of ponies wanting to get home again. Dash's parents helped their daughter pack a few things she might want for at her house, and they walked the group over to Twilight's hot air balloon.
“Please try to visit more often?” Sunny asked, trying to sound pleading.
“Don't worry, I will.” Dash smiled as she gave her mom a small peck on the cheek.
“And Twilight, please do your best to keep our daughter in line?” Ace asked.
“You can count on me!” She called, jumping into the balloon. Bon Bon and Lyra were already waiting inside. “C'mon Dash, our friends will be wondering what's happened.”
Rainbow said her final goodbyes before jumping in after her marefriend. I really should visit more often... she thought as they began their descent, Cloudsdale slowly beginning fading off into the horizon.
They touched down in Ponyville around noon, with their friends all waiting by the landing site. The barrage of questions that met them as they disembarked threw them off, and after a minute Twilight managed get them to go one at a time. Fluttershy managed to go first.
“Oh Rainbow! I was worried sick about you! Are you alright!?” She exclaimed, quickly controlling her excitement. “Are... you two okay?”
“Don't worry Fluttershy, I'm fine.” She smiled, giving her friend a hug. “We managed to work everything out and I really managed to see things from Twilight's perspective.”
“I must say that we were quite rude to you Twilight. You were only trying to do what was best,” Rarity said.
“I was still out of line.” Twilight smiled sheepishly. “Maybe the direct route isn't always the best.”
“Well, ah'm just happy to see you two back together,” Applejack said with a smile. “Hopefully that's all the drama we'll have 'round here for a while!”
“Agreed!” The mares all cried out, causing them all to fall over in a fit of laughter.
“Now I don't know about you ponies, but I could use some lunch right about now. How about we go over and grab something to eat, and we'll tell you all about what happened?” Rainbow asked. The nods from the group were all that she needed. “Great, lets go!”
The group stayed out for the rest of the day, walking around and talking. The sun was already setting when they separated and the pair of ponies arrived at the Library.
“This is where I leave you, I guess,” Rainbow said. “Thanks for everything today.”
“You mean you aren't going to stay the night?” Twilight asked, shocked.
“Are you kidding!? I just didn't want to invite myself!” Dash replied, opening the door for her marefriend. “After you.”
They awoke late in the day, not having slept much the previous night. Dash sat up in the bed and stretched, causing Twilight to open her eyes. “Good morning!” She chimed to the sleepy unicorn.
Twilight managed a wave as she rubbed the sleep from her eyes. She tried to snuggle back under the covers, but couldn't seem to get comfy again. Finally accepting the fact she was awake, she stretched. “How did you sleep?”
“Perfectly fine!” Dash replied, rolling out of bed. She walked over to the mirror to check her mane before turning back to face the bed. “What do you want to do today, Twi?”
“I don't really know, nothing really comes to mind. Is there anything you wanted to do?” Twilight asked.
Dash turned to walk out of the room. “Well, I thought maybe we could visit your family since you've already met my parents, If they're anything like you I'm sure they'd be lovely!”
With her back turned, Rainbow didn't get a chance to see Twilight's reaction. She froze, sitting up in bed as one word escaped her lips. “No...”