Ohmygosh, ohmygosh, ohmygosh! I’ve done it now. Let’s go outside, have some ice cream! Great idea Twilight! You’re a genius! Yeah, go ahead, let him sprinkle his ice-cream with a ton of industrial rainbow that wasn’t even approved as a consumable! Sure, what could go wrong! Take a changeling for a walk, it’s not like he is going to fall over and play dead in the middle of the city, huh?
The purple unicorn galloped behind the crowd who was carrying an unconscious Wub, her face swollen and red. She didn’t move and a few ponies were keeping her head in a position that would allow her to breathe.
The ponies at the front shouldered the glass doors, nearly shattering them against the hospital walls. A Pegasus filly dashed towards the reception, explaining in erratic words that a unicorn needed immediate help. The nurses and doctors reacted with amazing speed and coordination – the patient was put into a room and swarmed with nurses and doctors running checks and asking ponies what exactly happened.
“Let me through! I must see her! She’s my friend!” yelled Twilight, fighting for a spot between the agitated crowd.
“She’s your friend? What happened? Never in my life have I seen such a swollen face!” said a nearby colt wearing a white coat.
“Well, it was like this….”
To everypony’s amazement, Wub consumed the ice-cream in one bite, gulping it down loudly without a flinch. The pony turned around and smiled to the crowd who was beginning to cheer. Their voices got cut, however, by the unicorn’s face color changing from pure white to green. Then yellow. No, red. Orange. Purple. The kaleidoscope of colors continued to run through the oblivious mare’s face, until it finally stopped at red.
Wub turned sideways, looking at Twilight and squinting slightly.
“What’s this I f-” The rest of the sentence got drowned out by a loud gurgling. Wub fell to the ground stiff as a board, her face growing to the size of a healthy pumpkin. A nice, red pumpkin. With two bloodshot eyes and a swollen tongue sticking out of a malformed muzzle.
“Wub!” screamed Twilight as she was shoved aside by a brown colt.
The pony quickly bent over the mostly white unicorn, putting a hoof to her neck and checking for a pulse. It was there, but was rapidly slowing down. And her breathing was very erratic, with increasing times between inhales.
“Quickly, we must take her to the hospital! This must be an allergic reaction!” shouted the stallion, beckoning a few others from the queue to help him. In a few swift motions Wub was placed on firmly between a few stallions. One of them, a Pegasus, kept the mare’s head leveled with his wing, as instructed by the brown colt.
“W-Wait!” called out Twilight, finally ungluing herself from the spot and catching up to the crowd. “Is she going to be alright? Wait!”
Sugarcube Corner emptied faster than anypony could say Chimmy Cherry Changa. Pinkie was left alone, her hair a bit less fluffy than usual.
“I told him it was spicy,” she murmured. Guilt nibbled at her conscience, as she was fairly sure she felt a combo right before the whole rainbow-face-collapse-run-to-the-hospital scene. Double ear twitch. Knee itch. A slight pause, followed by a tummy gurgle. That combo meant … pony in danger.
“Nurse! Adrenaline, fast!” called out the pony doctor, on the fly picking up a syringe and sticking it into Wub’s neck.
“Everypony, out! The doctors need to focus, please!” The nurses fought back the worried crowd, muscling them out.
Twilight, despite claiming to be a close friend of Wub, got thrown out the doors too. Unable to see what was going on in the room, the crowd slowly drew a bead on Twilight, who shrunk in size under their stares.
“She’s your friend, huh?” asked the brown colt who reacted to the situation first. “If you two are friends, then how could you take her for ice-cream she was allergic to?”
“I…uh” muttered the mare, her ears shooting downwards.
“Yeah, what gives? I mean, you just stood there and watched her lie there?!” shouted another pony, repeating the concerns of other by-standers.
“And that rainbow? What kind of an idiot eats something like that?”
“Is it even legal?”
“Wait till the proper authorities hear about this!”
“Shame on you!”
Those and other voices kept assaulting Twilight. As if she wasn’t sick with worry herself.
What if he changes in the middle of whatever they are doing in there? What if he wakes up and attacks them in his bewilderment? Oh, how could I have been so stupid! Irresponsible! It’s all my fault. I hope he’ll be alright…
“Excuse me, miss!” A nurse pony shook Twilight’s shoulder. The ponies around were quiet now, staring with stern faces at the librarian. “You are the closest pony to a relative, yes? Please, come inside.”
As the mare entered the room, she could still hear hushed voices calling her names and pointing out her inconsideration and foolishness. All that was thankfully cut by the solid frame of the closed doors.
“Oh, there you are, Miss … um-”
“Sparkle. Twilight Sparkle,” shot out Twilight, looking over the medical pony. “Doctor, how is she? Is she going to be alright? What did you do to her?”
“Settle down, Miss Sparkle. Her life isn’t in any immediate danger. I must say, I’ve seen anaphylactic reactions before, but never so severe! Her face was as large as a Nightmare Night pumpkin! Her recovery is also probably thanks to Celestia’s blessing,” sighed the doctor, scratching his head. “She is still unconscious, but stable. We’ll keep her here until the swelling subsides. We’ll need to run a few tests-”
“What tests?” shout out Twilight, turning away from the unmoving Wub, her face still a large tomato.
“Oh, nothing fancy. We’ll take a few blood samples, check if everything is in order, then some routine-”
“You can’t!” yelped Twilight, feeling the weight of the puzzled colt’s stare. “I mean… Can’t we wait till she’s up? She’s, uh, very sensitive when it comes to that kind of examination.”
“… What?” asked the doctor, furrowing a brow.
“Can it please wait? I, uh, gotta write to her relatives! Yes, they have to know something like this happened! You need permission from them, right?”
“Not really, these are standard tests, we do those a dozen or more times a day and-”
“Pleaaaase, just wait!” whimpered Twilight, waving her hooves around in frustration. She needed to tell Celestia what happened. The situation was still salvageable. Even if the mare would have to be banished or stripped of her most faithful student title, this was more important. To keep Chip’s identity a secret. Hay knows if he can mimic pony blood. And if he can’t….
“… Fine, we will wait with the tests until our patient wakes up. Not that it matters that much,” shrugged the doctor, noting something in his notepad. “I’ll need you to come with me to the reception and fill out as much data about our patient as possible. Right this way please.”
Panting wildly, Spike finally reached the hospital. He always had trouble keeping up with ponies at full speed, given his legs were just too short. And there were only two of them, each hurting from the exercise the baby dragon had.
He let a group of whispering ponies exit the building first, noting that the overall tone of their conversation must’ve been something dreadful. Single words such as “mare” or “irresponsible” stood out, but didn’t shed any light on the topic of the discussion.
Straight from the doorway Spike recognized a purple, star bearing flank – Twilight was standing at the reception, filling some papers out with a levitating quill.
“Twilight!” called out Spike, waving a hand and trotting over to his friend’s side.
“Oh, Spike! Perfect, just great!” said the mare. She didn’t seem that thrilled though.
“What happened? I saw some ponies running to the hospital, you hot on their heels. Something wrong?”
“Yes, Spike. Something is very wrong. And we need to write to the Princess, pronto!” Twilight glanced left and right, finally grabbing the baby dragon and galloping out of the building. She managed to steal away the quill and an additional form, much to the anger of the receptionist.
“Sorry! I just need these for a minute, promise I’ll give it back!” she called out to the closing glass doors. Without much delay, she jumped sideways and behind some bushes.
“Quickly, Spike, write! Princess Celestia. Write, Spike, write! Princess Celestia. Wub in Ponyville Hospital. Need help urgently. Will be waiting in front of hospital. Twilight.” The mare was pacing around anxiously, scooping the paper barely after Spike wrote the last letter. With a bright purple glow, the parchment was rolled into a tight cylinder, one that could only be opened by Princess Celestia or a very determined spy. Hopefully, the latter didn’t exist or would miss this particular, extremely important piece of rolled patient form.
“Send it, Spike, send it now!” hurried Twilight, watching as the small dragon engulfed the paper with flames.
The green sparkling dust hovered in place for a second before bolting into the air and making a tight turn northwards – towards the majestic Canterlot castle.
All Twilight could do now was wait. Wait and hope the Princess would not hate Twilight to the point of … to the point of disowning her as a student. Or a friend.
Spike had many questions to ask, but the sad face of Twilight told him that it wouldn’t be considerate. He did all he could at that moment; came close and hugged the mare, allowing her head to rest no his tiny shoulder.
Chip woke up with the most obnoxious face itch he ever had. Come to think of it, his whole face never itched like that. His muzzle a few times, the chin, the tip of the horn maybe. But never his whole face. He slowly pulled a hoof upwards, noting how hard the motion was, bumping into soft and swollen skin.
It felt squishy and burned under the spot he touched. He felt like scratching. Which wasn’t such a good idea. If he ever would have magma poured over his face, he would at least now know what to expect.
He felt like shouting. That wasn’t possible, as his swollen tongue could barely move in the small space his mouth now was. He tried to swallow, but the large bulb in his muzzle didn’t want to go away. It was irritating, to say the least.
Since he could not do anything else besides staring, he indulged in the activity. The room was plain and uninteresting. Bed beneath him, a table to the right, some machinery hooked up to his right hoof, beeping constantly. Well, so much for that. He remembered being in a similar room back in Canterlot, after that one moment of reunion with his hive that wasn’t so friendly or casual.
What happened to him this time? All he remembered was eating that cold ball with the rainbow poured over it. He felt a rising heat in his stomach back then, the sensation creeping all the way to his face and staying there. He thought he was blushing, which could have been a normal pony reaction after consuming the ‘ice-cream’. Suspicions of something being out of place arose when the heat in his face begun to increase, his muzzle feeling like it was being inflated from the inside. He tried to ask Twilight if that was normal, but he lost consciousness before he managed to finish the sentence.
And now, he was here. Where was Twilight anyway?
A bright flash of light caught Twilight’s attention. As she came to inspect it, she bumped into a wide chest of none other than Princess Celestia. The regal mare was as always a beautiful sight to behold, with her multi-hued mane flowing in the solar winds, her regalia shining in the sun’s rays … and her face full of worry.
“Twilight Sparkle, what is the matter? I got your message and-”
“Oh, Princess, please, I’m so sorry! It’s all my fault, I swear! I didn’t think it would end up like this, I promise it wasn’t intentional-”
The Princess put a hoof on Twilight’s shoulder. It was a light touch, yet the librarian’s knees gave in, sending her into a shivering bow.
“Twilight, please, calm down. Tell me what happened, please.”
The royal features, beautiful in every aspect, were concentrated on Twilight’s face. The tiny purple mare couldn’t keep eye contact for long and shrunk even more before the Princess spoke.
“That is troubling, Twilight Sparkle. We must take our mutual friend away from here. Do you still remember your teleportation spell?”
“Yes, my Princess,” eagerly nodded the Twilight, pressing her muzzle against the dirty ground in a low bow.
“Good. Then we shall meet in the library. Me, you and Wub. Please, try and not raise any suspicion. I shall take care of the formalities in due time.” Without another word, the royal pony spread her wings, which reflected the almighty sun in a burst of light.
Twilight blinked away the dark spots in her eyes. Her mentor was gone, having teleported away. It was reasonable not to stay too long in the open. It would be bad if anypony saw her casually lounging in the bushes near the hospital, talking to her student in a hushed voice.
“Spike, go to the library, pronto,” ordered Twilight, turning around. She grabbed the quill she borrowed and slowly made her way to the hospital entrance. As inconspicuously as she could. With a wide, I’m-not-doing-anything-suspicious smile glued to her face.
Chip was lying here for maybe what? Five minutes? Yet he was bored almost like it had been a few hours, or days for that matter. He couldn’t call out to anypony, and there was no item to interest him in the vicinity – not even a stupid ball he could throw against the wall. If he would ever do such a thing in the first place.
To his great surprise and delight, the doors opened and a purple head poked inside, a smile as genuine as jewelry sold on the street by a cloaked, rugged pony adorning its face.
“Fwaywayt” spat Chip, cursing under his breath the inability to speak . The curses oozed down his furry chin, eventually leaving wet marks on his green overalls.
“Oh, Wub, you’re up!” whispered Twilight, squeezing herself through the small gap she made. Wouldn’t it be more comfortable to open the doors fully?
“Good, good,” continued the mare, her horn vibrating with purple magic. “Hold on tight. And think happy thoughts. Those might be the only nice things that will happen to us in the near future.”
The mare leaned forward, a grimace running through her face as a bubble enveloped her and Chip. It sparkled for a second or two before popping, making her and the swollen Wub disappear with a small plop. The machines near the bed beeped for a while before finally flat lining, automatically calling in nurses and doctors to the room. An empty room.