The impact was solid, Raindrops could feel the vibration in the ground beneath her. Ditzy had fallen from at least ten meters up.
There was no time for watching her language. What would've normally earned her punishment was the only way she could verbally express her horror. She galloped to her fallen friend with wide eyes and a sinking stomach. Expecting the worst, she scanned for any obvious injury as soon as Ditzy was in clear sight.
No blood, a bit of feathers still floating down, no blood, nothing looks too bad...no blood.
Eyes looked up and down as the distance closed, Raindrops' heart a jackhammer in her chest. Even though the situation didn't appear to be too drastic, her friend had just fallen from much higher than Raindrops had the last time she broke her wing. She remembered the pain as she thought back to the crunch and splinter that paled her father's face, and her heart thumped faster. She felt horrible. It was all her fault that she was going to have to carry her new friend to the hospital a day after they met.
Eyes looked again, Ditzy was laying on her back. Raindrops searched Ditzy for broken bones and battered limbs. She knew something would have to be put back into place. That is, if she was still alive.
But at least there wasn't any blood.
This wasn't how Raindrops planned to spend her afternoon. The sudden excitement from watching her new friend's first leap into the sky was brought crashing down when... well, Raindrops cursed herself for the unintentional pun. Good God, why was it taking her so long to reach Ditzy?
Finally, with strained breathing and a loss of color, Raindrops slowed to a halt before her fallen friend. She continued her search. God, she hoped there wasn't any blood. Her impromptu examination was stopped by something she hadn't expected in the least, an ear to ear grin that was framed on Ditzy's face. Her eyes were a bit askew, but that wasn't too shocking, and she was laughing in the most light hearted and childish way, a sign that should have told Raindrops that she was fine.
“Oh no, she must have hit her head.” was the first, horrifying thought that came to her as she looked down at Ditzy's blissful state. In the situation at hand, her thoughts weren't as silent as she hoped they would be.
“What?” Ditzy calmed her laughter just enough to audibly express her inquiry. Her eyes focused as she rolled over from on her back, stood up, and flapped her wings to shake off the grass that had settled upon them.
Raindrops' face was still quite pale, and this furthered Ditzy's confusion. Now, it was her time to mimic her characteristic expression of inquiry.
“What's wrong? Didn't you see me?” She was unsure and excited at the same time.
Silence, Rains gaze was directed at Ditzy, but small movements in her eyes scanned over her entire body, before they came to rest in a peculiar fashion. Raindrops was not necessarily looking at at Ditzy, but rather through her, as if some far point off on the horizon was beckoning her call. The liquid blue sheen that veiled the orbs in her skull was now a matte finish that matched her linen cheeks.
“Raindrops!” Ditzy called, hoping to relieve her from her trance.
Raindrops shifted her eyes again. They returned to their normal state, albeit a bit wider.
“Are you okay?” Raindrops said, her voice slightly cracked with the increase in volume. She was still breathing heavily, caused by a combination of running and shock.
Ditzy cocked her head at Raindrops, something was wrong here. After a few moments, she pulled her gaze away and looked at herself, flapped her wings once more, and did a little prance in place. “Yeah, I'm fine.”
Ditzy blinked and continued speaking. “I know what happened, I'm going to try again.” she said, turned around, and reared to take off again.
“Wait!” Raindrops yelled. Not seeing that her response did anything, she resorted to drastic measures and grabbed Ditzy by the tail with her mouth.
Ditzy felt the tension, stopped, and performed an emergency landing. Raised eyebrows were becoming more and more commonplace. Ditzy looked at Raindrops, looked at her tail, and then looked at Raindrops again.
Raindrops spit out Ditzy's tail, and shook her head. “What are you doing?!” she yelled.
Ditzy's eyes went wide at the sudden outburst. “W-me?! What are you doing?!”
“Trying to stop you from killing yourself!” she retorted.
“What are you talking about?” Ditzy flicked her tail, and turned around to face Raindrops.
“Stop yelling!” Raindrops yelled.
“I'm not y-” Ditzy sighed. This was getting risky. “What's going on?” she asked calmly.
“I don't know, you tell me. I'm not the one that just fell from thirty feet! I thought you were dead when you hit the ground.” Raindrops was getting more and more frustrated. The color was absent from her face, creating a monochrome expression of fear and nausea. The blue sheen was back, now in the form of tears on the verge of flooding. Ditzy however, did not notice the severity of Raindrops' emotional state.
Ditzy looked up. “Oh come on, it didn't feel that high.”
Raindrops' mouth hung open. “How would you know, you never even flew before.” She shook her head again. “That's not the point, why are you so calm about this?”
Ditzy's mouth followed suit. “Why are you so upset?”
“Because when my mom fell from that high, she never got back up!”
Oh god the blood. Why was there so much of it? The grass was stained ruby and mirrored the sky. It wasn't her mother's blank expression that stuck young Raindrops, nor was it her father's desperate cries for help as he held her limp body. The rush of the medical officers that pushed her out the way didn't phase her a bit, and the three months of silence from her father had no effect.
It was the fucking blood. Everywhere. On the ground, in her mother's lungs, on her father's hands, on the doctor's clothes. The smell wouldn't leave her nostrils. It stained her mind like the countless rags that tried to stop the liquid from leaking out her already dead corpse.
She woke up tasting it, she went to bed smelling it. It followed her like a plaque.
But there was no blood now. Ditzy's neck wasn't bent at a sickeningly wrong angle, and the force of the impact didn't rupture her jugular. So, there was no blood today, at this moment.
“No, that's not important.” Raindrops slammed her eyes shut, and waved a hoof in front of her face.
She was lying, of course it was important. The images were branded into the back of her eyelids, every single blade of grass that was washed in crimson... but she needed to focus.
“You!” Raindrops snapped her head back up, causing Ditzy to recoil a bit. “What's wrong with you?”
Ditzy tried to talk, but only a coarse “What?” passed her lips in an expression of shock.
Raindrops hit herself. “No, I'm sorry, I mean...is there anything wrong with you? Please, just....just be okay.”
Ditzy felt her own eyes moisten. “I'm...I'm fine, really. Nothing hurts. I'm okay.” She leaned forward and put her hoof around Raindrops, who now had her head bent as low as it could possibly go.
“How are you alive?” Her words came out weak and raspy.
She didn't have an answer. At first she thought that her fall was no reason for the amount of concern her friend was expressing. But, when Raindrops told her that her mother had fallen from the same height, and...and died. Well, nothing was really making any sense. While she was contemplating what had just happened, Raindrops was busy writhing from Ditzy's hold.
“Follow me.” she said, now free from Ditzy's grasp.
“The hospital, its not that far.” Raindrops replied, already walking in the direction of the clinic.
“Raindrops, I don't think...” Ditzy started.
“Please, just do this for me.” Raindrops stopped in her tracks. Ditzy couldn't see her face, but she could tell that tears were now falling freely down her cheeks.
Ditzy didn't really think it necessary. She felt fine, the fall hadn't even knocked the wind out of her, which was odd to say the least if what Raindrops was saying was true. No aches, no scrapes or bruises. She complied though, not following out of necessity...but something hurt deep inside Raindrops, something she didn't really want to show anyone. It didn't take a psychologist to see that.
Both were quiet during the walk to the hospital. Raindrops because she was more concerned with her friend’s safety, and Ditzy because she was scared to upset Raindrops more than she already had. She would walk a couple feet in front of Ditzy, occasionally stopping and looking back to make sure she was still there. Her cheeks were damp, and the slightest shades of pink. Ditzy on the other hand felt nauseous, and couldn't help but think that a major part of this was her fault. She wasn't exactly sure how, but it was definitely enough to clench her stomach. She thought the least she could do was accompany Raindrops to the hospital to ensure everything was okay.
“I don't know if you've noticed, but this is a hospital. We're busy taking care of real patients with real illnesses.” The owner of the voice was quite tall, wore glasses, possessed a dark brown coat, and a darker brown mane. He was very intimidating.
“Please, I 'm just asking you to take a look at her. She fell from very high up, and I need to make sure that everything is fine.” Raindrops was pleading to the doctor. Her distress didn't seem to overrule that fact that Ditzy was standing there, quite embarrassed of the whole situation, but unharmed nonetheless.
“You already told me that.” the doctor said as he glanced over to the amber-eyed patient, and then back to Raindrops. “Needless to say I don't believe you. Unless Celestia herself came down and blessed your friend over there, your story doesn’t hold up.” He nodded his head as a makeshift goodbye as he turned hoof and walked down the corridor from which he had arrived. “It's not very funny either, and I have an amazing sense of humor.” he called back over his shoulder.
Raindrops stared in disbelief at the retreating physician, before turning herself and exiting through the building's doors, Ditzy close behind. Raindrops intended to head home, but still was unsure of Ditzy's condition, regardless of her constant reminders that she was not harmed in the slightest. Ditzy herself galloped a bit to catch up with her distraught friend, in another attempt at comfort.
“Raindrops, I'm sorry about earlier, I didn't mean-” Ditzy started to say, but was again cut off.
Raindrops turned around and cut in. “No, please I know. Lets talk about something else.” Raindrops' eyes scanned for a topic of conversation apart from her own emotions. Much to Ditzy's surprise, her eyes (and hoof) landed on one of her cutie marks. “How about that? Tell me that story bubbles.” Instantly Raindrops cheered up, almost back to her normal personality.
“Oh...” Ditzy trailed off as she looked to the mark adorning her flank. There wasn't much of a story, well she imagined there had to be, she just didn't know it. When she asked her father about it. He contracted a nervous smile, ruffed up her mane, and told her not to worry about it. He would then sit quietly with a frown and furrowed brow. “I don't really...I mean I can't remember.” Ditzy said, eyes looking downward and a hoof making circles in the dust.
Raindrops looked skyward and rolled her eyes. “Well, of course you don't.” She said sarcastically, only before catching her rudeness and apologizing. Ditzy accepted and the pair continued walking, a few uninterrupted moments of silence and Raindrops was back to her glum demeanor.
“Well, why don't you tell me the story of yours?” Ditzy tried to sound as cheerful as possible. It didn’t work.
“No, no no. I got it...I got it the day when....” She looked at Ditzy with pleading eyes. “You know.”
“Oh.” Another attempt squashed.
The rest of the walk home was now relatively dull. Raindrops cheered up a bit, but was still down, and both were questioning how Ditzy had survived such a long fall. The grass wasn't plentiful enough to cushion such a landing. She landed on her back, yet neither her wings nor spine were hurt. Head, fine. Legs, fine. Nothing externally or internally was damaged on the lucky Pegasus, so it was left at that...luck.
“Celestia must have been looking out for you. If she can raise the sun, she can catch a Pegasus.” Raindrops joked. It was a good sign that she outlet her humor.
Ditzy laughed, but took the statement to heart. If some regal Alicorn was looking out for her, what was the reason? It probably wasn't that though. Just dumb luck.
It felt longer than usual, the path to Ditzy''s house, but after a somber stroll filled with wordless questions that craved logical solutions, they both arrived at the building that Ditzy and her father had called a home for almost a decade. Ditzy's father wasn't home, something that she had grown accustomed to. So, she reached behind the mailbox fastened to the outside wall, retrieved a skeleton key, and unlocked the door in one fluid movement.
“Neat.” Raindrops remarked. “So tomorrow, same time?”
Ditzy was surprised by Raindrops' offer to resume training to eagerly. “Yeah, um, I mean if you're okay with that. I'm fine if you want to wait a bit.”
“Well, I can't wait too long now can I?” Raindrops flapped her wings and down and feathers were thrown into the air.
“You too huh?” Ditzy remarked chuckling.
Soon enough the two, along with the rest of the winged population of Ponyville, would not possess enough feathers to fly. So, if Ditzy wanted any air time, it would have to be in the next few days.
“I just need you to promise me something.” Raindrops lost her smile and gained a serious expression that called Ditzy's attention. “I need you to be careful. No sense teaching you to fly if you're only going to break your wings doing so.” They both laughed, albeit softly and a bit nervous, it was still genuine. “It's only been two days and you nearly killed yourself.” One could plainly see Raindrops was using her jokes to comfort herself.
“Okay, I will.” Ditzy assured with a nod and a smile.
Raindrops smiled. “Alright then! See you tomorrow.” She turned, waved, and started home. She would not fly for the rest of the afternoon.
Waving back, Ditzy smiled and returned inside. As soon as Raindrops had left her sight, she darted to the nearest mirror. She checked every inch of her body for injury, but to her relief, there was none. The rest of the night was spent quietly in thought. Ten meters? Ditzy wasn't sure if their was a building in Ponyville that was that tall, and yet, she didn’t even feel pain when she landed.
She looked out her bedroom window. Celestia's sun was setting on the horizon.
“Luck huh?” she said aloud. An unknown amount of time passed before she decided to stop questioning life and all it's wonders, and drifted off to another night of dreamless slumber.