Rainbow Dash glanced down at her saddlebag, letting a light sigh escape as she looked over the bunch of rolled up parchments protruding from the sack. With a gulp and a deep breath, she lifted her hoof and tapped on the door.
A voice called from within. "There's no need to knock ya know."
"Ah, heh. Right." Rainbow pushed through Ponyville Library's front door and made her way over to Twilight Sparkle's desk, setting her saddlebag down in front of her.
"What's this about, Dash?" Twilight inquired, placing a hoof to her chin.
"I, uh..." Rainbow scratched the back of her mane and looked off to one side. I shoulda prepared for this...
"Is everything alright? You're acting kinda funny..." The concerned unicorn stood up, peeking inside the bag.
"Yeah, yeah. I actually just wanted to show you something." Rainbow slid the bag out of her reach and grabbed the rolled-up scrolls with her teeth, setting them down.
"And what's this?" Twilight curiously looked them over.
"Well, you know how the final book in my favorite series just came out? Yeah, I decided to make my own fan-continuation, and I wanted you to take a look... if you aren't too busy." Rainbow blushed and chuckled.
"Ah, I see." Twilight lifted the papers with her magic and spread them out over her open book. "I'd love to read this for you, and I'll give you all the advice I have to offer. Just give me... about eighty minutes to read this over."
"Alright, sure." Rainbow leaned over on the table and rested her cheeks on her forehooves.
Twilight took a deep breath and sat back on her chair, leaning forward to begin reading.
Rainbow twiddled her hooves, wondering if she'd made the right choice in letting Twilight see her writing. She impatiently tapped the desk and watched her friend's focused eyes scanning over her work. She huffed and wondered what could possibly be going through the unicorn's mind. Then Twilight grinned.
What was that for?! Rainbow's mind began to race. Oh crap, I messed up. She thinks I'm an idiot...
Sensing Rainbow's gaze, the purple mare peered up at her friend. "Dash, please stop staring – you're distracting me. If you'd like, you're welcome to go have a seat over there while I read."
"Right, sorry." Rainbow Dash blushed and stood up, clumsily trotting backwards and plopping down on a nearby sofa.
Twilight nodded and went back to reading while Rainbow stared at the ceiling.
Why did I decide to do this? She's not gonna like it... I'm so stupid! She smacked herself in the face and dragged her hoof down, attempting to wipe the anxiety away. She's gonna laugh at me, I know it!
Rainbow's pessimistic thoughts kept her occupied for a while as the clock ticked away. Every so often, the quiet would be broken as Twilight flipped through the pile of pages, almost stoic as she did so.
After several of these page-turnings, Rainbow could contain herself no longer. "So where are you at?"
"Shhh. I'm almost done."
The pegasus looked over to see that Twilight now had a quill in her magic and was taking notes on a separate parchment as she read. She groaned, and let her head plop rather forcefully back down onto the cushy arm of the couch. "Hurry up will ya?"
Twilight shook her head at the mare's impatience. "Just a few more... minutes. Okay?"
The sound of the clock ticking, and Twilight's periodic dipping of the quill and tapping it to the paper on the desk began to sound almost rhythmic as Rainbow waited, fidgeting with anticipation.
Tick-tock... tick-tock... tick-tock tap, tap tick-tock tap tap tap tick-tock, tap tick-tap-tock-tap
"Guh! Are you done yet?!" Rainbow shouted, leaning up suddenly.
"Yeah yeah, hold your horses." Twilight quickly jotted down a few more details and rolled the scrolls back up in the proper order.
"Hey, it was a long story, alright? And you should be thanking me for this. I didn't have to read it you know..." Twilight pointed out, crossing her hooves.
"You're right, I'm sorry... Well? What did ya think?" She smiled, her eyes wide.
"Dash... You blew me away with this story. I'll admit, it's much more than I expected. I really didn't know you had it in you." Twilight laughed and trotted over to her, the scrolls floating along behind her in an aura of magic.
"Really?" Rainbow said, her eyes gleaming with pride.
"Yes, really. However, I did find a few issues I'd like to discuss with you." The studious unicorn returned to her seat and gestured at her notes.
"Issues?" Rainbow gulped and followed.
"Nothing serious, just a few tips to keep in mind for your future writing, and in case you want to edit this one up a bit before you show anypony else." Twilight turned the first page around to face her friend, then looked up into her eyes. "First thing's first: writing errors. This is a list of all the misspellings and grammatical errors I spotted. Nothing major – it happens to anypony writing anything. We all make mistakes now and again."
Rainbow Dash blushed and looked the list over. "Wow, this is kinda long..."
"It's thorough," Twilight explained. "The next two sheets are about a few things that caught my attention. Come look."
Rainbow trotted behind her friend and leaned over her shoulder to read with her.
"Here are a couple of things I wanted to ask you about. These sections stuck out to me, and... well, you get the point."
Daring Do stared out over the unfamiliar landscape from atop a cliff, familiar and comforting thoughts entering her mind. Though the strange new world stretched out below her boasted a beauty like nothing she'd ever seen before, it still failed to compare to the gorgeous purple eyes she knew were waiting for her when she returned home.
"I can only assume you were referring to Haypenny, Daring Do's personal assistant and researcher. Right?" Twilight looked up and grinned.
"Yeah... I, uh..." Rainbow blushed and cleared her throat.
"Well, the thing is that I don't recall her eyes ever mentioned as being purple before. Also, I'm not so sure that Daring was that fond of her."
"Well..." Rainbow looked away and huffed. "It's my story, and I wanted there to be romance, okay?"
Twilight's eyes widened and she scooted back. "Yeah, it's okay. I was just pointing it out, is all."
"Fine, what's the next thing?" As soon as Twilight looked back down, Rainbow shuddered and blushed, feeling more embarrassed than ever.
Trapped! Daring began to kick the walls around her, hoping to find a weak point. Not-so-surprisingly, there didn't seem to be a single one. She spread her wings and fluttered to the roof of the sealed-off cavern. She rubbed a hoof against the ceiling and felt the rocks crumble away. Suddenly, the cavern began to fill with water! She looked down to see a stone shaped like a dragon's head, with water gushing out from its open mouth. She closed her eyes and began to think. She knew there had to be a solution, some sort of way out. She just needed to keep calm.
"I wish you were here with me, I really need you right now." Daring sighed, then forced herself to stay cool. "You're so smart... What would you do if you were in my place?"
Her eyes snapped open, an idea forming. She rushed down to the rising water and dived under. The dragon-head was in sight, still gushing water.
"The rest isn't important, but once again, Haypenny is mentioned. Why?" Twilight rubbed the side of her head. "She was never a big part of the series, and was definitely not so highly regarded by Daring Do. I don't get it."
"Look, I liked Haypenny, okay? I can mention her if I want, so what's the big deal?" Rainbow retorted, frowning and crossing her hooves.
"It's not that big of a deal. It's just that your readers will be as confused as I am. They won't be thinking about how you for some reason liked Haypenny; most of them probably don't even remember who she is." Twilight sighed and pushed the paper away, bringing up the last one.
"Alright, this last part is kind of important. I realize you like Haypenny, but she's far too underdeveloped in both the main series and in this fan-fiction. The next segment just doesn't work, but it's so beautiful."
Daring Do sat, her muscles aching, and stared out the window of the train.The Crown of Nightmare Moon was secured, its dark powers rendered useless. Daring, of course, felt relieved by this, but couldn't quite figure out what was missing. No matter what she accomplished, no matter how much praise and love she received from everypony around her, there was always something missing. There was always something she longed for, an experience not yet experienced, a question still unanswered.
She exited the train from the Dragon City, the ashy remains of the crown still in her saddlebag, and an empty pit in her chest.
"Daring! You're safe! I missed you so much, I'm so glad to see you... So glad." Haypenny rushed to the pegasus' side and wrapped her front hooves around her neck.
Daring Do winced beneath the tight hug. "Careful there..."
"I'm so sorry, are you alright?" Haypenny backed up and began looking her friend over, searching for injuries.
"Just a little sore is all, nothing serious." Daring hugged Haypenny, then it all became clear.
It wasn't until that very moment, that she finally felt complete, that her journey finally meant something. Daring lifted her two weary front hooves and wrapped them around her closest friend's neck. "I'm glad to be back. I... I think I..."
Haypenny nuzzled her neck, gently massaging the mare with her cheek. "I'm glad to have you back. Let's go home, and please, promise that you'll never leave me again. I can't bear the thought of losing you, and it's all I think about when you're gone. You're my best friend, and I love you Daring Do, I really do."
Daring nuzzled her back and breathed against her ear. "I love you too, Penny. And I promise, I'll never leave your side again. Every time I was in trouble, I thought of you, and how I couldn't let myself die, not yet. There was something I still had to do..."
"...What was it?"
Without another word, Daring kissed her. The world disappeared around her and she knew her journey through life had finally come to an end. Of all the mysterious, magical artifacts and amazing treasures Daring had encountered on her adventures, a simple kiss proved to be the most amazing thing the world had to offer.
"Rainbow, this is... Well, coming from you..." Twilight laughed and placed a hoof on her horn. "Coming from you in particular, this is beautiful. I've never seen this side of you before."
She smiled softly at Rainbow, who blushed madly and suddenly took great interest in a piece of lint on the floor.
"But this character just doesn't have any substance." Twilight turned back to the manuscript, poking at it with a hoof. "I mean, you've barely introduced her and she's already fallen in love with Daring. Since in the canon storyline they don't have anything other than a platonic relationship, you need to develop the pair as a couple, and show how their love grew. Otherwise, it's just not as believable."
Twilight glanced sideways at Rainbow, a bright smile on her face. "Still, though, it really is a nice piece of writing. I especially love that last line."
Rainbow couldn't bring herself to speak, blushing deeper than ever before and breathing in and out deeply. Stepping towards the couch, she fell over and buried her face in the cushions.
"Rainbow, there's no need to be so embarrassed! This is really great, and I do like it. It's just... I think... Maybe you could... use a little help? I could maybe lend a hoof? If you'd like, that is."
Rainbow peeked one eye out from between the cushions.
"Are you serious? Uh, yeah, that'd be awesome!"
Twilight beamed, turning her eyes back to the writing. "Great! I'm positive that, with a little effort, this could make for a really amazing story! I have to confess though..." She paused, her hoof tapping her chin. "Why did you choose Haypenny? And where did the purple eyes come from? I mean, she has a green coat, I don't think purple would really be the most natural color to go... oh."
She turned slowly towards the couch, comprehension dawning in her eyes.
Rainbow forced her face deeper into her cushiony hiding place. "Mrrrf, leave me alone..."
"I will not leave you alone... Purple eyes, smart – are you trying to convey your own personal emotions through this writing?" Twilight stood up and trotted over to her friend, concern etched on her face.
Rainbow didn't move or speak. She simply faced the cushions and let out a long breath.
"You're using these characters, aren't you? Daring Do is you, and Haypenny is... me." Twilight blushed and looked down. "Am I right?"
Rainbow looked slowly upwards into Twilight's big, beautiful purple eyes, and gave a tiny nod. "I... I was so mad when they ended the series. I always hoped that Daring would end up with Haypenny..."
Twilight smiled and placed her hoof on Rainbow's shoulder. "Awwww... You're a hopeless romantic, aren't you?" She sighed and leaned down. "And that's exactly what you were trying to show me, wasn't it?"
Rainbow couldn't find a voice to reply, lost in Twilight's gaze.
"Dash... it's okay." Twilight closed her eyes, smiling gently, and held out her hoof.
Rainbow sat up, never having felt so insecure in her life, and smiled back. She reached out and touched her friend's hoof. "So, you liked my story?"
"I loved it." Twilight took a seat next to her, their hooves now interlocked.
"That's good, because you were my inspiration for the whole thing. I never stopped thinking about you while I was writing – I knew you'd love it if I did this. I never doubted it for a second!" Rainbow threw on a cocky grin and tapped her chest.
"Of course... Write a book for the egghead, right?" Twilight laughed and leaned forward, her muzzle now nearly touching Rainbow's. "You know me all too well. I really do love it, and I'm glad to have been your inspiration. That means the world to me, Dash, it really does. And I can't wait to turn this into our little story, together."
Rainbow gulped and closed her eyes, Twilight's warm breath trailing across her cheek.
"Dash?" Twilight whispered, slightly opening her eyes as they inched closer.
"If I was your inspiration for the entire thing, and you were projecting us each into the story, then why not write my character into the story more?" Twilight couldn't help but giggle at her own silly words.
Rainbow backed up and took on a serious tone. "Don't you see, Twi? It's not about that, it's about me. It's about how I do all these things, like... like, how I won the Best Young Flyer's Competition. Or how I impressed thousands at your brother's wedding with the best sonic rainboom ever! It's just like that with Daring Do. She goes on amazing adventures and experiences everything anypony could ever dream of, but there's always been something missing. Haypenny has never been a really big part of Daring's life, but when they're together, you just get the feeling that they're happy. At least, I do. When I'm with you Twi, I just feel happy, like all my big adventures led me to you, and you're the real prize – you're my treasure. You're all I want, and you make me feel complete."
Twilight's eyes scanned over Rainbow Dash's burning face, trying to read every emotion she possibly could. "Dash..." She suddenly thrust herself forward and locked lips with her closest friend.
Rainbow Dash wrapped her hooves around Twilight's head and pulled her tightly against herself. They continued kissing, as lovingly as the most passionate romance novel either had read. Twilight felt her body begin to tremble, and pulled away from her friend's lips.
"...Was it like you imagined?" Twilight asked, her voice soft and her breaths short.
"Better." Rainbow hugged onto her friend, and laughed. "It was so awesome, so sooo awesome!"
"In that case, I regret nothing. Now, let's go have an adventure of our own..."
This was a request by This awesome Guy
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Edited by the greatest editor in all of Equestria, Silver Cloud.