52w, 2dTwilight's Library
32w, 3dfimfiction's favorites
17w, 15hCompleted Story Compendium
11w, 5dthe creation center
- Show All Groups
12w, 1dChildren of Equestria
8w, 1dIndependent Stories
8w, 1dRainbow Dash Shippings
8w, 1dBest Stories Ever
13h, 32sEQD on FIM
The space of the waiting room felt like it had closed around Rainbow Dash and Dr. heartfeld, leaving them in a vacuum where they were able to comprehend only each other's presence and the things they said. Rainbow Dash was completely still on the outside, but the inside of her head kept telling her different ways to properly react to the things the old, faded tan stallion had just told her. Though she had an idea what had happened in Scootaloo's past, she was still somewhat unprepared for hearing the truth.
Dr. Heartfeld was a patient pony. While Rainbow was picking up the pieces of information one by one, he sat still and watched her with a pair of curious, yet calm eyes, eager to hear her response while still giving her the required time to absorb what he had said. With a straight back and a dignified expression, he sat ready for Rainbow's judgment, whatever it would be. This was, after all, the reason she had asked him to tell her the story of the unfortunate orange filly in the first place.
"Hold on," Rainbow Dash said in terrified confusion, signaling halt with her hoof at the old doctor while she was steadily shaking her head to collect her thoughts, eyes down. "So, you knew everything about how Scoot's dad left her?"
The old stallion nodded a single time. "I did."
"And you knew that she had trouble trusting other ponies, yet trusted you like you were… what did you say again? A reserve dad?" She raised her head to look at him, her gaze settled for interrogation.
"That is correct," he replied, nodding yet another time. "I was one of the few ponies she could trust. It's probably because I knew about what was going on in her life, unlike everypony else."
"Yeah, I'm not good with all that psychology mumbo-jumbo," the pegasus said with a tone that pushed the stallion's speculations to the side. "But even I can see that you screwed up pretty bad when you tried to send her away to an orphanage. I mean, you knew Scootaloo had trouble trusting ponies. What the hay were you thinking?"
"Well, I-," the doctor started with a sigh, but he was cut off before he could even begin explaining when Rainbow Dash once again halted him with her hoof. She was looking straight in his eyes, her face showing a silent anger and lots of determination. Though she seemed a little intimidating, she carried no ill will, but only anger as the to-be guardian of Scootaloo.
"Actually, I don't care what you were thinking. I just know you made a huge mistake." Rainbow Dash lowered the hoof she was pointing at him and lessened the intensity in her facial expression a tad, though she still kept her gaze rather strict. "But you did it for her, right?"
"Of course I did," the stallion answered bluntly, a little surprised at the question. "I would never do anything to harm her. My timing with the orphanage was just… wrong… I should have taken her in for some time myself; get her used to the idea and such instead of just thinking it would be all right…" He looked to his hooves with a guilty face that carried a lot of regret. "But I didn't… I only have myself to blame for that."
"Yeah, yeah," Rainbow Dash said, waving her hoof in front of him as if to say she did not care about that either. "I don't really wanna hear about what you 'could' have done. All I needed to know was if you knew that what you did do was wrong, and since that's the case, I don't really need to tell you that myself."
"I'm not sure I understand," the doctor said with a low, puzzled voice.
"Yeah, um…" Rainbow Dash was trying her best to keep a cool appearance. Avoiding eye contact and awkwardly scratching her cheek while she was talking. She somehow found it easier to keep her cool while in the air, so she flew off the ground a few feet, effectively breaking out of the personal space they had made during the conversation, and crossed her hooves in an attempt to seem as chilled out as possible. "Well you're sorry, right? It's pretty obvious when you look at how you acted in front of Scootaloo. As long as you're sorry and you show it and you say it, she should be able to forgive you, don't you think?"
"Well, I don't really care about being forgi-," the stallion started, but he was once again cut off.
"And you shouldn't say you don't care about being forgiven," was the sentence Rainbow used to interrupt, bringing the stallion's puzzled expression back upon his face. She did not smile, still obviously trying to look cool and calm, but her eyes were giving away as much kindness as her words. "No way I'm gonna let Scootaloo run around and bear a grudge like she's doing right now. As long as she's living with me, she's gonna have to be able to let things go and live in the present. Otherwise she'll never be able to be really happy, don't you think?"
The old doctor was stunned for a second. He was looking at Rainbow Dash with a much different perspective than usual. Seeing her float before him with that serious face and determined posture made his mustache vibrate a bit, slowly allowing a growing amount of laughter escape him. "Yes, I definitely think so. Boy, I never would have expected you of all ponies to say something like that."
"I'm full of surprises," Rainbow Dash said proudly, followed by a healthy snigger.
"You really are," the stallion said with a thoughtful smile as he kept his studious gaze on her. "You know, you really do resemble of her."
Rainbow Dash leaned in. "Of who again?"
"Copperbolt," the stallion replied with an even greater smile. "Always the positive one. It's no wonder Scootaloo likes you."
"Oh, yeah," Rainbow said thoughtfully. She looked out the window, down the long road that led to her home, where she sent Scootaloo. "She really had an amazing mom, huh? I never would've thought that Copperbolt had a child… then again; I didn't even know she died… I only heard about how she had to give up her career…"
"As soon as she stopped being a Wonderbolt, the media lost its interest," the stallion said gently. "She had only been one for a short while after all."
"Yeah…" Rainbow kept afloat, eyes still locked on the road. Her head was filled with thoughts, making her slightly oblivious to her surroundings for a moment, but she quickly shook her head to get back on track. "Anyways, I guess I gotta get this whole thing settled. I really gotta have a chat with that kid, don't I?"
"That might be a good idea." Heartfeld nodded in agreement. As soon as rainbow Dash flew over to the counter where the light-purple mare stood, and had probably been standing throughout their entire conversation as evidenced by her dumb expression, Heartfeld thought the scenario of Scootaloo living with Rainbow Dash over once more. He quickly came to the conclusion that this was the best possible thing that could happen, and crossed his hooves with a sense of relief. "I'm really glad she found you."
With a pen and a lot of paperwork ready in front of her, Rainbow Dash smiled at the old doctor and replied, "As long as she is too."
Rainbow Dash made sure to look around the area around her house a few times to see if she could spot Scootaloo somewhere. The orange filly was nowhere to be found, which either meant she did not go home as Rainbow told her to, or that she had somehow managed to fly up to the house all on her own. With the strong winds and the fact that Scootaloo was rather new at flying, her being able to fly all the way up there would have been a rather impressive feat. But there was no denying that the young filly had talent, so Rainbow would not be surprised if she had in fact managed that task. The rainbow-maned pony then took flight, heading diagonally up to the cloudy terrace of the house and proceeded to open the unlocked door.
Sure enough, inside the white and fluffy furniture-stuffed cloud room was the little orange filly. She was skipping around the room, laughing heartily as she played catch with the slow shell-copter that was Tank. Even the tortoise seemed to be smiling vividly, albeit with as much intensity as a hundred year old pony would be able to muster. They did not seem to notice Rainbow Dash in the doorway. They were much too busy having a good time, which made Rainbow Dash smile in delight at them getting along well. She did not want to interrupt them. But she knew she would have to spoil the fun at some point.
When Scootaloo hid herself behind the cloud couch, Tank did a slow turn with his head as if he had noticed the presence of something in the doorway. Whether it was animal instinct or a pet's passion was not something Dash could put her hoof on, but it was obvious that the flying reptilian was overcome with joy at the sight of its master. It let out an ugly disgruntled noise that Rainbow Dash had steadily taken a liking to since she adopted him, finding it as cute as the yelp of a puppy. The noise also made Scootaloo pop her head up from behind the couch to see what the fuzz was about, and as the green chopper hasted to embrace the rainbow mare, the little filly beamed up herself.
First Tank, then Scootaloo. They took turns welcoming Rainbow Dash with a passionate hug. The two ponies were grinning and giggling heartily while Tank flew in circles on the side, grunting his little song of joy. He seemed happier than ever.
"Did you get it done?" Scootaloo suddenly asked with the widest of smiles and glitter in her eyes.
Rainbow Dash suddenly found herself a little uncomfortable, knowing that she would have to spoil the moment soon, but she still returned the smile and nuzzled the filly's head. "You now officially live with the awesomest pony in Ponyville, kiddo."
The filly once again leapt in for a hug. "This is so great! Now we can be together all the time, and we can go on trips…"
"Hey, Scoot?" Rainbow Dash said quietly in an attempt to get the filly's attention, but she was already jumping around the place in excitement, her mouth running wild with excited blabber of the things they would do from there on. Rainbow Dash took in a deep breath and tried again, this time with just enough force in her voice for the filly to notice. The result was a puzzled expression on Scootaloo's face as she sat down to quietly listen to what Rainbow Dash had to say. "I'm happy you're excited about staying with me and all, but we really gotta talk about something."
Scootaloo tilted her head a bit and raised an eyebrow. "Talk about what?"
"Well," Rainbow began with a slightly worried tone, afraid of how the conversation would go. She was after all new to being responsible. "I talked with Dr. Heartfeld as I said I would. But I had to know something before I could… well… defend you or whatever…"
Scootaloo kept looking at her with a slight bit of worry in her eyes, but Rainbow Dash shook her head to shake off the discomfort and continued, "Yeah, I asked him to tell me your story. Everything he knew."
"What!?" Scootaloo yelped in shock, making Tank retract to his shell for a moment.
"I pretty much had to," Rainbow Dash defended immediately, fearing that the filly would overreact. "I mean, how else would I know why you're mad at him?"
"You could have asked me!" Scootaloo yelled in anger.
"I've already done that, but would you tell me!?" Rainbow Dash found herself yelling back.
The filly became quiet. She diverted her gaze from the rainbow-mare in front of her, staring blankly to the side. Rainbow took a moment to calm herself so she would not let her temper get the better of her. Being a hothead was something that came naturally to her, but this time she had to be the calm adult, no matter how frustrated Scootaloo was. She rubbed the space between her eyes slowly, massaging herself back to being composed, and let out a bit of her breath.
"Scootaloo," she began with a low tone of voice as soon as she had calmed down enough, and the filly forwarded her lips to show that she was pouting. "Listen, I know things have been hard for you. I still can't say I completely understand, because I've never really experienced the same things as you, but… I still think I know you better than most ponies."
"Why?" Scootaloo asked, still looking to the side, keeping up a defensive appearance.
"Because you're like me," Dash answered with a friendly smile. "Well, not really like me. I mean we're pretty different in a lot of ways, but I think deep down we're the same kinda ponies." She moved a little closer to the filly, but did not touch her yet; afraid she would somehow make things worse, "We're both pretty stubborn aren't we?"
"So what?" Scootaloo replied with a hard-shelled attitude. She turned away from Rainbow Dash and crossed her hooves. Yet even if she was pouting, her wings were trembling just a bit, enough for her fragility to be noticeable.
"Yeah… pretty stubborn," Rainbow Dash continued, ignoring the filly's grumpiness and trying to sound as soothing as she could, "And proud too. We don't want anypony to feel bad for us, ain't that right? We don't want anypony to think we're weak, so we put on this… I dunno what to call it exactly..." She rubbed the back of her mane in awkward thought to find the right words to use in this situation. So far, Scootaloo was still pouting, "Attitude, I guess. When something's making us sad, we just smile and pretend nothing's wrong, right? I know I do at least."
The filly's backside was now trembling with greater intensity. Every once in a while a sniffing sound came from the front, and the movements that usually followed that sound, such as whipping the head back and using a hoof to wipe off the face, were kicking in as well. Rainbow Dash noticed this. She smiled a little at the fact that she seemed to be getting through to the filly, but kept her eyes silent and caring all the time.
The rainbow-maned mare then slung her head back and moistened her lips, "You know, I think that kind of pride and stubbornness is pretty cool sometimes. I mean, if you weren't stubborn, you wouldn't have made it this far in the training at all. And your pride just adds fuel to the flames… but…"
Scootaloo moved her head backwards just enough for one watery eye to be visible to Rainbow Dash. She had become somewhat milder, more genuinely interested in what Rainbow was saying; a crack in the shell. "But what?"
"But it hurts," Rainbow Dash said with her lowest possible voice. "It hurts the ponies who care about you when they can see you're locking yourself up. But that's not all… The problem is it hurts you." She stretched her hoof towards the filly, finally feeling like she could make actual contact, and gently placed it on her back. "There's such a thing as being too stubborn too, Scoot… You're isolating yourself from everypony else… You're letting all the bad thing's that's happened to you take control, and it makes you sad. It makes you angry. It makes you think that somepony who's only trying to help is some kind of enemy."
"Why do you say that?" The filly asked with a high-pitched voice. She took a big step forward and turned around. Her stance became defensive and her watery eyes narrowed in anger. "What did you talk with Heartfelt about!?"
Rainbow Dash tried to calm her: "Scoot, listen to-."
"Did he talk you into this!?" The filly shouted in rage. "What the hay did he say!?"
"Will you shut up!" Dash cried out at the top of her lungs, and Scootaloo was almost pushed back by the force of her voice. The rainbow mare was panting a bit, but she soon realized that she had once again let her temper get the better of her. She smacked her forehead and let the hoof slide over her eyes, covering them while she calmed herself, all the while Scootaloo was sitting in front of her with trembling lips. "You're doing it again, Scoot," she continued with a little more annoyance in her tone, but other than that it was back to normal. "Don't you see? I haven't even told you anything yet, but you already think I'm conspiring with Heartfeld, but that's not how it is at all… Scootaloo, I'm trying to help you…" She removed the hoof from her eyes and caught the gaze of the orange filly. "I really am… I like you, Squirt, and I want to help you… but I can't do that if you just push every little helping hoof away… You gotta learn to trust some ponies…"
The filly had restarted her sniffing, and even added a quiet whimpering to it. She looked down at the perfectly white floor, lips trembling as she stuttered her useless defense of her actions. "But… b-but I… I just…"
Once again, Rainbow Dash felt like she could move closer, and she did. This time she even moved close enough to dry away some of the tears that had stuck on the orange filly's cheeks. "I already said I wouldn't leave you, haven't I?" Dash said gently, and Scootaloo looked up at her with shaky eyes. "I mean that… I won't leave you for any reason, but that doesn't just mean like I won't go away… It means I won't leave you alone to just go off and cry on your own… I wanna be able to comfort you, but you gotta let me in so I can do that, all right?"
The filly looked back down, tears exiting the corners of her eyes one by one. "… I miss her…" she suddenly said with a low, yet high-pitched voice, finally bursting completely out of her shell.
Rainbow Dash offered her a careful smile. She reached both hooves around the filly and clutched them together, pulling Scootaloo into the comfort of her chest. "It's all right…" the rainbow-maned pony whispered sweetly. "Let it out."
"I really, really miss her…" the filly continued, her voice becoming more tear-choked for every time she said anything. She did not return the hug, but instead let her body rest completely against Dash, soaking her cyan coat with her tears as she finally let go and cried almost as audibly as she did when Copperbolt died. "Mommy… I miss my mommy!"
"I know," Dash replied as she gently rocked the crying filly from side to side. "And it's ok."
"All right, all right!" Dr. Heartfeld called out to whoever was knocking on his door in annoyance. They seemed impatient, constantly knocking the same three times in a row every thirty or so seconds. Even with this though, the old doctor did not find any reason to stress his way to the door. Had it been an emergency the hospital would have sent a magic note, unless of course every unicorn employee had gotten ill at the same time.
Another one of the knocking-waves began as soon as he reached out to open the door, hitting his eardrums hard enough for him to do a small jump in surprise, consequently waking him up completely as he opened the door.
His surprise increased as soon as he saw the ponies on his doorstep. Rainbow Dash was standing tall, smiling in careful triumph at the old doctor, and on her side, attempting to hide a little, was Scootaloo. The filly was avoiding all eye contact, the orange color on her cheeks turning a little red as if the sun was setting on her face.
"Hey, Doc," Rainbow Dash said with an energetic charisma, albeit with a mature tone behind it that would not have been there only a few days ago. "Surprised?"
"Honestly, yes," the doctor said with an awkward grin, his eyes jumping between the two ponies before him. "I never would have expected you to come here. Is there something I can help with?"
"It's not so much that," Rainbow replied. She gave Scootaloo a quick nudge on the side that made the filly take a step forward. "But Scootaloo has something she wanna say to you, isn't that right, Scoot?"
At this point, Heartfeld had narrowed down the possible options of their visit, but he was still not sure whether what Scootaloo would say was good, bad or in between, so he looked at her with genuine anticipation.
"I'm sorry…" Scootaloo said with a low voice, containing a high amount of embarrassment in its tone.
"I'm sorry?" Heartfeld said, not because he misheard her, but because he was rather surprised by the filly's sudden exclamation.
"I'm sorry for running off like that… and for hating you," Scootaloo continued, still avoiding eye contact with the old stallion. "I guess I overreacted a bit… well, a lot… I know you just wanted to help me, but I couldn't really admit that until now…"
A big smile appeared on Heartfeld's face. This whole apology had left him sort of speechless for a moment, but that did not stop him from trying to form a response. "Well… I…" After a moment of stuttering awkwardly, he sighed quickly to clear his mind. "That's quite all right, Scootaloo. I'm just glad to know you're safe and sound."
The filly looked up at his mustache-hidden smile and gave him one in return, finally breaking out of that awkward mood she was in. She jumped forward and grabbed onto his forelegs, making him stumble a bit with a snigger of surprise. He quickly found himself returning the hug, smiling widely at the fact that the filly seemed to have forgiven him. Whatever Rainbow Dash had said to her, it had been more effective than he would have imagined.
"Dr. Heartfeld?" Scootaloo asked modestly while still clinging to his legs. "Would it be ok if I… you know… came to visit sometimes?"
The old doctor laughed heartily. "No need to even ask, Scootaloo. I would be honored to have you over sometimes." He looked up at Rainbow Dash. "You're welcome too, of course."
"Thanks," Rainbow Dash replied with a toothy grin. "We'll be sure to stop by then. For now, though…" She leaned down to eye level with Scootaloo. "How about we get going, eh Squirt? We got a lotta ponies to tell about us moving in with each other."
Scootaloo's face did not show any immediate signs of enthusiasm, but after a few seconds she smiled and nodded in agreement with the suggestion. She still seemed new to the idea of telling everypony her story, but for once she was open to it. She turned back to Heartfeld and tightened the hug quickly before letting go and skipping back to Dash's side. "I'll see you later then, Candyfeld," she said across her shoulders with a toothy smile while she waved the doctor farewell.
Heartfeld's smile widened as he returned the wave. "Back to Candyfeld, are we?" he laughed. "I'll look forward to that then. You two have a good time, you hear?"
"We will," Scootaloo replied with a quick nod. She returned her attention to Rainbow Dash. "Hey Dash, wanna race to Carousel Boutique first?"
Rainbow Dash grinned deviously. "Oh, you got guts, asking me to race. Wings or hooves?"
"Hooves," Scootaloo giggled. "Definitely hooves. No way I'm good enough to beat you yet in a flying competition."
"You're saying that as if you think you'll ever win," Rainbow Dash laughed.
The two of them got ready, looked back at the doctor in the doorway and simultaneously said "Bye, Doc!" And they were off.
"Goodbye!" Heartfeld called to them happily as they galloped down the road. Watching them energetically stir up the dust of the gravel path, he could not help but smile across his whole face. It was finally over. Scootaloo had finally found some peace, and Heartfeld was happy that everything seemed to end well. Those two would definitely be all right.