Angels Of Blue

by Dawn Leaper


I'll Tell You All About It

Oft when the solemn, dreamy Night flings wide,
The star-clasped splendour of thy mystic page,
She reads me tales unheard by all beside,
Secrets of many a past and future age.

She tells me how the Undying Poet wrote,
Upon His boundless blue in words of fire,
Whole through the ecstatic air was heard to float,
The burning praise of every angel's lyre.

It is a promise of eternal bliss,
Of light and life and love beyond the sky.


'Oi, Soarin,' a whispered voice echoed around him. 'Wake your lazy flank up, you idiot.'

Soarin groaned and mumbled incoherently, rolling over. He was lying on something soft, and he could feel the sun's mellow warmth kiss his back. The cloying air ruffled his mane and feathers in a soft breeze, smelling of freesia, and jasmine.

And then a new aroma wound its way into his nose, a distinct, painfully familiar scent, that smelt like cinnamon and chilli and green apples, sweet and spicy and crisp all at once.

A raspy laugh rang through his ears, which perked up so fast they nearly ripped off his head.

Soarin's eyes burst open.

It couldn't be...

It took him a moment to process where he was. It was some kind of long hall, with no exit or entrance or windows. Long, arching voussoirs stretched up into the ceiling, fading into thin, trailing landskeins.

It was clear that they were in the sky, for the walls were composed of languidly oscillating clouds that surrounded them from every angle, and a circular light source directly in front of him, that seemed to be a tunnel of sorts, illuminated the fluffy structures, casting a golden glow around the open space.

The sky broke through the wispy clouds overhead, punctuating the cushioned space with sprinkles of cornflower blue.

Near the tunnel of forever-light, which burnt like the sun in the sky, was an old oak desk, vacated, a long wheel of parchment attached to a typewriter.

And on the list, which sprawled down the desk and on into the hall's misty floor, were names. Lots and lots and lots of names, each typed neatly in black ink, and next to them, with what Soarin could see from his limited perspective, was what looked like dates.

He pulled himself onto his feet, squinting into the light source and shading his eyes as it grew brighter and brighter. Suddenly, the light refracted into shards of dimmer light, and Soarin rubbed his eyes as a blurry figure crossed the horizon.

Slowly, as his eyes adjusted to the fluctuating levels of light intensity, he started to be able to make out a firmer shape from the figure.

In his heart, he knew who it was, anyway.

It was a mare, her stature slender and wings long, keen and gleaming, bending the light in thousands of different directions. Her coat was a lustre cyan, melting into gold from the tuscany light that silhouetted her. Her fetlocks were teal, with accents of gold, and the feathers at the end of her wings, her primary and secondary sets of feathers, were gold also.

His heart shattered into a million pieces, like the lightbeams that bounced off her body.

'Rainbow Dash...' he whispered, his voice barely audible. His breath choked up in his chest, and his brain refused to acknowledge what his eyes saw.

And as her face came into focus, and the blinding lights dimmed down, he could see her radiant smile, her bright eyes that seemed to burn with the life of a thousand suns, her mane and tail gleaming in the spectral shards of light.

'I do believe that's my name,' she giggled, and her laugh was like broken windchimes.

Soarin fell to his knees.

'Is it really you?' He asked, every inch of him trembling. He had lain eyes on the only thing he had wanted to see for the past seven months, and yet, the shock had somewhat numbed his system.

She was beautiful, he thought. Of course, she had always been beautiful, he had remarked upon it every day, but the thought struck him like a thunderbolt sent from Celestia herself. It was as if she flown in the divine winds, bathed the rivers of Bellerophon, and a little piece of Heaven had been sewn into her soul.

The gold in her feathers and fetlocks certainly hadn't been there before, and he just noticed the small emblem resting between her eyebrows on her forehead. A silvery pattern of swirls and thin diamonds and lightning bolts and sunbeams and loyalty runes that started at the bridge of her nose and spread into a delicate crystalline-looking pattern.

She was like a goddess, he thought. An angel of blue.

And she radiated a joy, a warmth, a blissfullness. As if she had been told the greatest secret of the Universe, the meaning of life. As if she had everything she could ever want, and more.

But... she was different. Not like he had last seen her. Soarin had wondered if people in Heaven looked like their old selves, or their young selves. And yet, she was just... ageless. Neither old nor young.

But all the glamour and the gold and the aura was stripped away as they locked gazes. She was just... her. Just home. Just comfort. Just love.

Just his Dash.

'Well, duh,' Dash snorted, wrinkling her nose, 'who else could be this awesome?' She added with a wink. 'I mean, check out my cool gold feathers and shit.'

Soarin's mouth curled up into a smile. It really was her.

'DASH!' he exclaimed, sprinting across the cloud to reach her. He could nearly already feel the softness of her fur beneath his hooves, feel her warmth on his neck, smell her sweet, spicy, green apple scent as he buried his muzzle in her mane. Here she was, practically tangible, robust and vivacious and shining with vitality. She was so close-

He slammed into something, hard, and cold, and most definitely solid. 'Ow...' he moaned, rubbing his nose.

When he looked up at his wife again, her smile had faded.

He reached out again, more tentatively this time. It was like there was an invisible wall between the two of them, and when he reached out into the air, a golden pulse of light originating from the place he had touched his hoof rippled across the barrier, revealing it's true, colossal extent.

It stretched and stretched in all directions, infinitely, endlessly, uncrossable.

'Why... why can't I cross it?' Soarin asked, breathing hard.

Dash smiled sadly, and touched her hoof to his on the other side of the wall, a mirror image. Just like his, a ripple of light fluctuated from the point at which she touched the wall, and yet, it remained unmoving.

'It's not your time,' his wife breathed out quietly, 'that's odd.'

'What do you mean, 'it's not my time'?' Soarin asked, 'What is this place, Dash? Why are you here?'

'Thee has't been bestow'd a most wondrous honour,' a creaky voice came from their side. It sounded like an wiry tree swaying in the wind. 'Her Lady Valiance, the Mistress of the Moon, hast answ'r'd thy wisheth. Thee has't an hour to talketh.'

Dash looked to her left hesitantly, at an old, grey pegasus, who's wings faded into a snow white, the same colour as her mane. A pegasus who's silver half-moon spectacles rested placidly on her withered face. A pegasus whose voice spoke of wisdom, whose eyes had seen many things, whose ears had heard many secrets, and whose lips had told none.

A pegasus who definitely had not been sitting at the desk a mere moment ago.

The pegasus nodded, seemingly granting permission, her face expressionless and even a little bored.

'Who is she?' Soarin whispered.

'That's the Soulkeeper, but you can call her Marge,' Dash whispered back, 'this is the Gate,' she gestured to the tunnel of forever-light behind her, 'and I came here to greet you.'

'The Gate?' Soarin asked, 'The Gate to what?'

At that, Dash chuckled. 'Oh, come on Soarin. I know you're no Starswirl the Bearded, but surely even you can figure this one out.'

Something clicked inside Soarin's head. 'This is the gate... to Heaven?'

'Bingo,' Dash grinned, before her smile faded, 'although I have no idea what you're doing at the Gate if you're not dead.'

'Did you know I wasn't dead?'

'Of course I did.' She rolled her eyes, in a fondly exasperated manner. 'I've been watching you every day, Soarin. I always know what you're doing.'

Soarin's heart warmed a little at that.

'Why are you at the Gate?' Soarin asked, lifting an eyebrow. Surely dead people stayed in Heaven?

'Like I said, to greet you. Make sure you don't freak out and lose your shit at being dead. Although most people don't, Queen Fausti says it's being given a familiar face in the time where everything seems unknown that calms people down. She choses one person to greet the new soul.'

'How does she know who to choose?'

Dash shrugged. 'She just does.'

Soarin and a million questions. Who was Queen Fausti? Had she seen her family? What about their friends? How many people were there in Heaven?

Eventually, he settled on 'Who greeted you?'

Dash smiled, chuckling a little. 'Silver. I came to the Gate, and the first thing he said to me, was 'well slap me on the arse and call me fish-face, you sure as hell took your damn time.' Apparently the Queen couldn't choose between my mom or dad, so she picked neither of them. Fluttershy was an option as well, but the Fausti couldn't pick from any of my friends either.'

'Sounds like you caused a lot of trouble up there before you'd even arrived,' Soarin grinned slightly.

'Well, you know me,' she shrugged, mirth in her eyes, 'never a dull moment.'

'Oh, do I ever. Dash... what's Heaven like?'

Dash bit her lip, her eyes dreamy. 'Oh, it's awesome. One day, when you get up here with me, I'll show you the Halls of Bellerophon, and the Fields of the Sun, and the Isle of Hecati. And you can see everyone again. My mom, my dad, your mom, your dad, Flutters, Spitfire, Fleet, Pinkie, Rarity, AJ... everyone's up here. Heck, I think I've even seen Clover the Clever once or twice.'

Soarin smiled sadly. 'It's sounds great.'

'Yes,' Dash replied, her eyes narrowing as her voice sharpened slightly, 'it does. But don't go doing something stupid to get up here quicker, you hear me?'

Soarin was horrified. 'No, never, I would never.'

'Good. Now,' she continued in a softer tone, 'will you tell me about my kids? Are they alright?'

Soarin chuckled. This was something he could talk easily about.

'Dawn's Juniper had her baby,' he grinned, his cheeks warm, 'we are officially great-grandparents.'

'I know,' Dash melted, 'I like to watch little Junebug when she's sleeping. Like a frickin' guardian angel,' she chuckled, doing a neat flip.

'That you most certainly are.' Her husband replied, laughing for the first time since he had seen her.

And they talked, for what seemed like too little a time, as he told her about their family and all the small little details that only a grandpa would notice, all the lovely calls he had with his little grandkids, and they talked about her, and her life and her legacy. And it wasn't strange, or weird, or unsettling. It was comforting, and teasing, and utterly normal, and as easy as breathing.

And much too soon, Marge was ringing an ancient bell (who knew where she had gotten that from) and they had only a minute left.

He was suddenly struck by a melancholic thought. Dash would never get to hold her great-grandchildren, and when their hour was up, he would have to go back alone. The bitter memories that had been subdued the moment he laid eyes upon his wife resurfaced all at once.

Dash sensed his change in mood. She had always been able to.

'Oh, my Soarin,' she sighed, 'you've been so sad.' She reached out a hoof as if to try and comfort him, but was blocked by the barrier.

'It's... it's just hard without you. I miss you.'

'I miss you too. And I- I'm so proud of you,' Dash said, smiling through her tears that he realised had only just appeared. 'You've been so brave.'

Soarin's heart broke all over again. He was being to lose count of how many times that had happened in the past year. He didn't really know what to say, so he said the three words that somehow managed to convey everything he was feeling at once.

He had just gotten her back and now he was losing her all over again.

'I love you,' he told her, again and again, as he felt a drowsiness pull him further and further down. On the other side of the wall, Dash sank down to her knees with him.

'I love you more,' she grinned, 'and I am never one to be bested.'

Soarin smiled, his eyelids heavy and drawing closed, 'Don't I know it...'

'Sleep, my love. Sleep, knowing I will always watch over you,' Dash breathed, wishing she could stroke his mane through the invisible wall that separated them.

'Whenever you see a rainbow- or anyone doing awesome shit- think of me...' she chuckled slightly at herself.

'I already do... I always have...' Soarin murmured, barely coherent. He felt funny, as if he were flaking apart into bits of dust flying from a sand dune.

'What's dying like...' he breathed, now completely lying on the floor. 'Does it hurt?'

If his eyes were open he would have seen the painfully bittersweet expression on his wife's face.

'Chin up, you big ol' goof,' she whispered, her tears running gold down the barrier, 'and I'll tell you all about it when I see you again...'