Later that night, after all of the others went home, Rainbow Dash paced back and forth endlessly outside the door next to Pinkie's room. She waited for somepony to give her some news. Her head darted upward as Nurse Redheart left the room and looked straight at her, looking distraught. She put a hoof on Rainbow's shoulder and shook her head.
"You can . . . go in now . . ." she sniffed. "I'm sorry . . ."
Rainbow Dash gasped and rushed into the room. She stood by the bed and watched Pinkie slowly open her eyes and smile at her.
"Hi Dashie . . ." she said.
"Pinkie . . . is it . . . really-"
Pinkie nodded her head slowly. "I'm sorry, Dash."
Rainbow Dash stood by the bed as the doctors cleared the room. She knelt down and held Pinkie's hoof tight. Tears streamed down her face. Pinkie Pie turned her head slightly to face her friend.
"Oh, Pinkie . . . how am I going to survive without you?"
"You'll be fine *huff* Dashie . . . just keep smiling . . ."
Rainbow Dash buried her head in the bed sheets and sobbed for a moment. Pinkie held her head up with her free hoof. She brushed the tears away.
"Promise me Dashie . . . You'll keep smiling," Pinkie coughed, her voice fading to barely a whisper.
"O-okay . . . I promise. Cross my heart and hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my eye," Rainbow Dash sniffled, trying very hard to wear a big smile.
Pinkie Pie giggled softly. "Giggle at the ghostly . . ."
Rainbow Dash smiled. "Guffaw at the grossly," she sang. They finished the song together.
Rainbow Dash embraced Pinkie Pie as she started to fade. "I love you, Dashie . . . I always will . . ." she whispered.
Rainbow Dash hugged as hard as she could as Pinkie drew her last breath.
"Don't forget . . ."
Rainbow Dash sobbed as Pinkie went limp in her outstretched arms. There was no Pinkie Pie. There was no Pinkamina. There was no anything left in this empty shell.
"I won't . . ." Rainbow Dash said through her rattling sobs. "I'll smile twice as hard for both of us."
She held what was left of Pinkamina Diane Pie in her arms and hummed their last song together over and over. She stood up. She couldn't stay here forever. She had to go tell the others. Her eyes still overflowing with tears, she hugged her friend's lifeless body in her arms once more, then she tucked her into the bed and shut her eyes: her once bright, happy blue eyes. Rainbow Dash let out a long, empty sigh. Pinkie was dead. Nothing was going to bring her back. Her heart ached with horrible pain and sadness. She left the room, but before turning out the door, she looked back at the seemingly sleeping Miss Pie.
"I'll always remember to smile . . . And I'll never forget you . . ." she whispered, leaving the room and walking down the empty hall.
There was nothing but horror and guilt in Dash. She closed her eyes and stopped walking for a moment. Behind that closed door was her friend: her best friend in the whole world. And she was gone.
"I . . . I can't . . . believe it . . . I Wished so hard for her to be okay. Why would you do this to me, Celestia?! What did she ever do to deserve this?!"
Rainbow Dash collapsed in the hallway, hyperventilating and crying uncontrollably. Dr. Hooves stepped out of his office and helped Dash up.
"She's- she's . . . Gone . . ." Rainbow sobbed.
"You need to calm down, Miss Dash. Come into my office. I can get you something to help ease the pain."
Rainbow Dash couldn't speak. She simply followed him, in a fashion more fitting to Fluttershy than to the brave and strong Rainbow Dash. She was a broken mare. Without her other half, she felt like she was nothing. Applejack, Twilight, Rarity, and Fluttershy were just her friends . . . Pinkie was her sister, her life, her world, her best friend. She was gone, and so was the part of Rainbow Dash that made everything okay. She collapsed into a chair. Dr. Hooves looked worriedly into her eyes.
"Rainbow Dash, please try to relax. I know Pinkie Pie was your friend, but-"
"Shut up! You don't understand, she was more than that! She was my best friend in the whole world, and nopony can replace her," Rainbow Dash pounded her head on the table.
She breathed in slowly. "Pinkie said to smile. Smile, Dash," she thought to herself over and over. She regained her composure, her eyes quite swollen and red.
"I'm sorry . . ." Dash sniffed.
"I understand. Why don't you go home and rest? You need it. I know it's hard right now, but trust me, you'll be okay."
Rainbow Dash nodded and stood up.
Meanwhile, at Twilight's library, Fluttershy, Rarity, Applejack, and Twilight herself stood together waiting for news.
"Y'all think she'll be okay?" Applejack asked.
"I hope so . . ." Fluttershy replied.
"We all do dear," Rarity sighed.
Twilight stood staring out the window. She felt sick. She closed her eyes and felt that something was odd, that something was broken. There was a panicked slamming against the door. Twilight flattened her ears to her head. Something was different. Something strange. She rushed to the door.
"Girls . . . it's Rainbow Dash," Twilight whispered, her chest clenching up with fear.
"What?!" everypony yelped at once.
Twilight held her breath and opened the door. Rainbow Dash collapsed into her arms, her entire body wet with tears and sweat.
"No . . ." Twilight said, confirming her suspicions.
Rainbow Dash sniffled and looked up, giving a soft nod and letting go of Twilight, running into the room.
"She's gone!" Rainbow Dash sobbed, collapsing onto the floor.
Rarity gaped. "No . . . it can't be . . ."
Applejack leapt up. "She seemed better though! This is some kinda' joke!" she screamed, tears flowing down her cheeks.
Fluttershy shuddered in the corner of the room. "Not Pinkie . . ."
The five girls huddled together and tried to speak, choking out hardly a single word through their tears.
"What are we going to do?" Twilight sniffled, trying to stay calm.
Nopony answered. Twilight didn't know what they could possibly do now. It was too late. She hugged the others and sobbed. Everything was broken: the elements, their friendship, everything. Kindness didn't matter, honesty wasn't important, generosity was worthless, loyalty wouldn't help anypony, and more than anything, magic didn't make a difference in the world.