The five stages of waking up.
Rainbow Dash yawned. She tossed her sheets to the side and stood up groggily. She stumbled till she found herself in front of her huge mirror, and smiled, eyes shimmering with ambition.
"I’m awesome,” she snickered while flexing her nearly non-existing muscles. It annoyed her a ton. Lately she had been working her flank off, but it was so bucking hard to gain any muscles or shed some fat. Well, the perks of being a mare.
A few feet from the enormous mirror in the bedroom, she had her calendar. She stretched a little in front of the shiny mirror and then flew off and looked bored through the calendar. Nothing special, as all the days the last weeks. Suddenly her whole face lighted up like Celestia's sun on sun-celebration day.
Soarin was coming today.
Dash smiled sheepishly. Her very own coltfriend-who also happened to lead Squad Wonderbolt-was coming to see her.
She still could not believe this, and she was slightly embarrassed how…giddy and warm this thought made her. But even though she was as happy as could be, she was still curious why his visit was so random.
Dash flew down to her kitchen, which was furnished in light blue, and navy colors as the rest of the house with cloudy furniture. She was on her way to get some hay-bacon strips from the fridge but stopped herself.
Since all the hard workouts didn’t help she guessed she had to start watching what she ate a little bit more.
God, she even had a stamping card at the local Ponyville HayBurger, something she wasn’t necessarily proud of.
Yes, she liked to push her body to the limit, but usually not in a healthy way but more in a 'how-much-pizza-could-she-eat-before-she-couldn’t-move-anymore' way. The calories were adding up…
She shook her head. It was too early in the morning for all these boring egghead-thoughts.
Who was she, Twilight?!
She slammed the fridge door, and instead found two bananas and an apple. She ate quickly, washing it all down with a big glass of orange juice. But the look in her eyes could have roasted a chicken on its period. She really loved her usual hay-bacon strips.
Dash opened the door and enjoyed the view.
She shot up into the sky. She usually went for a flight around Ponyville, then had a meeting with the weather team, afterward she worked on her strength and went for a long flight again as the sun was going down.
But today she didn’t have any weather team responsibilities, so she decided to go check on her friends. After the usual workout-round around Ponyville.
She looked down while flying up and freefalling at various speeds. THIS was her destiny. Flying was her life. She filled her lungs with delicious, fresh oxygen.
Pumping her wings even harder, she shot up like an eagle. She loved this so much. Loved the feeling of freedom.
Nobody could take it away from her. Nopony could destroy the independence of flying. It was just her and her wings.
“Sup’Twi?” Twilight lost the book she was holding when the sudden squeaky voice startled her. She looked up to the window and flattened her brow.
“Wow, Rainbow Dash. I just love when you do that instead of using the door.” Twilight's voice almost drowned in sarcasm.
“Haha, I know! Cause I’m awesome!” Dash answered in her usual manner, not really getting any of the sarcasm-part.
“Shouldn’t you be getting ready for Soarin's visit?” Twilight suddenly asked.
Dash flew up and bopped Twilight on the head.
“Twilight, Twilight, Twilight…How did you know he is coming? Are you psychic, or did you just spend too much time with Pinkie lately?”
Dash laughed but her brain started working on top gears. How could Twilight know that? Conspiracy theories began falling into her brain.
Maybe Twilight was a…SPY!
No, that was just silly. Uggh, her brain didn’t even work properly without the hay-bacon!
Twilight blinked confused. ”Well it’s pretty obvious that he should be coming today…”
“And why is that so?” Dash eyed her suspiciously, but suddenly lost all interest in Twilights answer.
On Twilight's table, with a glory of light falling on it, was a giant hayburger. With extra hay.
The delicious scent got registered by her smell-receptors, they were trained up exactly for situations like this one.
Screw her diet, she could start again tomorrow. She licked her lips and did not even listen to Twilights answer.
She bent down ready to attack the burger, but the moment she leapt up in the air, Twilights magic embraced her and yanked her down.
“Oh no, Rainbow Dash! Bad pony, bad pony, that’s MY hayburger!” Twilight scolded her while giving her head a hit with a paper roll.
“But, Twiliiiiight…!” a moan raised up from Rainbows throat and her face changed into the best puppy-imitation she could make. Twilight was not the one to give in when the subject was food though.
“If you want a free meal, go to Rarity. She’ll have to share with you, unlike me.” Dash crossed her hooves and tried to double the power of the puppy-stare, but Twilight just rolled her eyes.
“Seriously Dash, shouldn’t you be preparing for Soarin's special day?” Twilight sighted.
“WELL I…Wait, what?” Dash looked up at Twilight confused, the red lights began to blink in the back of her brain and she had a feeling of having forgotten something important.
“Well… is it not his birthday today? Don’t tell me you forgot Rainbow Dash!” Twilight begged.
“Heh, I wouldn’t say forgot.” Dash smiled sheepishly. “But I just, didn’t really remember. Thanks for reminding me!
Dash quickly flew out, with a humiliated expression on her face while squishing her cheeks. She wanted to hoof-palm herself. How could she have forgotten about her stallion's birthday?!
“Wait, Dash! I can help you if you want!” Twilight shouted after her.
Dash turned to Twilight “NO!” she screamed, shaking her head vigorously.
Twilight looked at her surprised.
Dashes cheeks got splashed with red. “Heh, sorry. But no thanks, I screwed up enough already, I have to do this myself. I want to be the best marefriend ever. And everything haves to be perfect…He is a Wonderbolt after all…A hot Wonderbolt,” she began talking to herself as she turned away from Twilight.
“Well, good luck…” Twilight turned away and started reading her book again while she chuckled. Rainbow Dash trying to be a good marefriend. Even holy Celestia couldn’t have known this day would come.
Rainbow Dash was frantic. This day had to be ABSOLUTELY perfect! She thought about what would make Soarin happy. Think, think, think! This was EXACTLY what to mass inside her head was supposed to be used to!
A firefly lit up over her head. “PIE!” Dash yelled out loud and picked up her speed in the direction of sweet apple acres.
None of them saw the small yellow pegasus with a pink mane who was standing just a few feet away from the house.
She didn’t want to interrupt them, but she wanted to help.
Shy was too scared to talk or let them know she was there.
“Oh, Pegasus feathers, my shyness has ruined so many opportunities for me," she cried to herself and fluttered home with her head down.
“PIE! I NEED APPLEPIE, APPLEJACK!” Dash shouted as she crashed into Applejack, making them fall in a heap on the barn floor.
“What the hay are ya doing sugarcube?!” Applejack asked while she pushed Dash off her and stood up.
“SOARIN'S BITHDAY! PIE! SOARIN! COLTFRIEND! HAY-BACON! SOARIN!” Dash shouted while she was trying to catch her breath from the quick flight.
“Well, ah’m sorry, but we are actually outta pie at the moment and…” She didn’t finish because Dash pressed her nose up Applejacks and looked at her angry.
“OUT OF PIE? NOOOOO!!! MY LIFE IS RUINED! JUST BECAUSE YOU DON’T HAVE PIE! WHY DON’T YOU HAVE PIE?!” She yelled, her voice so loud it blew down Applejacks hat.
Applejack flattened her brow. “Ya know, it’s not that easy, ya can get the recipe if ya want and ya can see yerself. Plus unlike ya, Ah have responsibilities,” AJ answered calmly. “And calm down a bit, what are ya, twelve?” she joked seeing how hyper Dash was.
“Yeah, on a scale from one to ten! Because I’m awesome! So give me that recipe! Gimme, gimme, gimme!” She jumped up and down, Pinkie style, but then, realized what she was doing.
”Ehhh, please?” She blushed lightly.
“Okay, let’s bake a pie. This should be easy," Dash said to herself with a confident smile while putting on her hair-band. Of course she could bake a pie.
Determination sparkled in her eyes when she thought how happy Soarin will be when he sees this party. Party. PARTY!
Rainbow Dash threw down everything in her hooves and nearly smacked her head upon the ceiling when she realized she had forgot one of the most important parts of a party. Decorations!
How could Pinkie pull this off every day?!
“PINKIE!” Dash crashed into her pink bouncing friend at Sugarcube Corner.
“Dashie, calm down! I have the confetti, ballons, party canon and happy birthday banner ready and packed!” Pinkie bounced up and down happily.
Dash froze completely. Okay, Pinkie Pie was weird, bit SERIOUSLY?! HOW the holy Lunar plot did she know? Dash shook her head.
“I’m not even gonna ask how you knew that I needed all that…” she didn’t finish because Pinkie suddenly pulled a kitten from behind her back, bent down and held the kitten up in an offer-ceremony-style.
“Oh, silly! The great Muhorse here told me!” Pinkie yelled cheerfully while she smashed some orange frosting at the kitten’s forehead and began mumbling something about oatmeal to the cat.
Dash grabbed everything Pinkie had prepared for her and backed slowly out.
Finally the moment had arrived, she could start on the pie!
Dash threw down all the decorations she got from Pinkie down on the table and stretched out her hooves.” Time to make some awesome culinary magic.” She grinned.
AJ’s recipe didn’t have proportions, at least not ones that Dash was able to understand. She simply tossed the half pack of flour into the bowl.
Then sugar, she decided to add the whole pack of sugar.
And baking powder, ehhh….Dash decided to just add the half pack of everything else.
Half a pack of baking powder, half an apple. Half a pack of…Wait, what was baking powder really for?
It seemed pretty unnecessary, but since it was such a small pack, she just tossed in the whole thing.
Apples, eggs, apple cider vinegar…
Wait, APPLE CIDER?! She could really use something to calm her down, and her beloved apple cider seemed like a good option. How was it possible she didn’t even know she had it all this time?
She opened the bottle and poured the liquid down her throat.
But it came as quickly up again, as it went down.
That was not apple cider!
That was NOT apple cider!
Blah, she spitted it all out, her throat burning.
But it was necessary for the pie, right? She poured the rest into the bowl.
Dash was pouring in the milk when a thought struck her like lightning. She lost the milk bottle and accidentally spilled the whole bottle into the bowl.
She grimaced. Ehh…the more the better, right?
But she got distracted by the thought again. Soarin always said that he loved her the way she was herself, but he really liked when she dressed up a bit. And it was his birthday…
Dash flew out her door once again, hoping that this would be the last time, she had to get everything ready! The train would be here in two hours!
She was scared Rarity might go a little bit overboard with makeup and dressing her up, but if she said enough, Rarity would listen to her, right?.... right…? She gulped.
“Ahhhh, darling, you will look simply divine in that dress!” Rarity squealed while squishing Dash into a pink dress. The moment Dash mentioned she needed Rarity’s help, Rarity started drowning her face in makeup and made her try a thousand different way too girly outfits.
“Rarity! This. Is. Not. Cool. Enough! Don’t you have anything…I don’t know, simpler?” Dash looked at the enormous green gown she was wearing at the moment.
“Urgh, Rainbow Dash you are such a un-girly-fashion-tasted-pony!” Rarity sighted dramatically while taking off the green dress of Dash with her magic.
Rainbow flattened her brow but smirked. “Rarity, that’s not even a word!”
“But it describes you very well, darling! Okay, what if we try to brush off that bird-nest off your hair and try with a simple ponytail and a bow?” the annoyed voice indicated that Rarity had given up after all of Rainbow’s complaining.
Dash sat down again while Rarity fixed her hair and clasped on a pretty pink bow, in the same enchanting magenta color as her eyes.
Rarity had also curled her hair into bouncy cascades that reflected the light in different colors.
Rainbow looked up in the mirror. Her hair was pulled up in a ponytail with a pink bow, but it wasn’t too girly, she still looked awesome. In fact, she looked more awesome now, if that was even possible. She smirked and pulled her chest out.
“I think my job here is done for now.” Rarity smiled and walked over to one of her other projects.
“Thanks Rarity!” Dash yelled and quickly flew home.
She stopped right outside the door to her cloud house.
How could she be so forgetful today? Of all possible things, she had forgotten the most important.
What was the only reason ponies celebrate birthdays?
Presents, of course! She smacked herself mentally. She needed a present for Soarin, and she had to think quickly.
Think, Rainbow Dash, think! What will make him happy? She thought of what would make her happy if she was a stallion. Soarin was a goofy and silly pony, and he sometimes was too lovey for Rainbows taste, but his hotness weighted over that. And the cute personality of course. And his muscles…
Buck, as always she got very distracted while thinking about his well-toned physique. Her head shot up.
This gave her an idea. An awesome idea!
And all she would need would be two hoodies and some markers.
“Fluttershy! I need help!” Fluttershy slammed the door open a few seconds later, standing there with her teddybear, a blanket on her back and sleeping-beanie in baby pink on her head.
“Oh gosh, what is it Dashie? Is somepony hurt?” Her still sleepy voice cracked from worry.
“No, no. You know the skyblue hoodie you got for your bear that he hated and never used? You think I could maybe get it? Pleeeeeeease?” Dash knelt on the ground in front of Fluttershy.
The pink mare just stared.
“Rainbow. Did you wake me up just because of that?”
Dash got up and grinned. “I see Miss Kindness here is a bit grumpy! And who goes to bed at 6PM anyway?”
“Doesn't everypony do that?” Fluttershy fluttered her sleepy eyes.
“Suuuure they do Fluttershy. But you know the hoodie, and the markers you use to make banners for pet-adoption? Do you think I could get that?” Soarin will be here in less than 30 minutes, and I need a present!”
“Okay, I will get them for you, just wait here.”
“Taste the Rainbow they say,” Fluttershy grumbled to herself “but they don’t warn you about how she will mercilessly wake you up at any time.”
Rainbow got to work. Soarin would be there in just 20 minutes, and she still had to bake the pie, and decorate.
On her own hoodie, that she got from her well-filled closet, she wrote:
'That’s my goofy pie-lover', with and arrow pointing to the left.
And on the other, that was exactly Soarins size, she wrote:
'Pie', with an arrow pointing to the right.
She smirked confident, pleased with her work. She threw Soarins hoodie into a blue gift bag, that was decorated with bolts.
Now, onto the pie. First she put up the banner to get it over with, and blew up some balloons.
The pie batter seemed to be bubbling and wheezing inside the bowl. That probably meant it’s ready to be baked, Dash thought exited.
Yay, as Fluttershy would have said.
She poured the batter into a form, and placed it inside the oven, that was turned up to full heat to get the pie ready as quickly as possible. But the moment she took a step backwards, she pushed something.
Then all the terrible things started to happen.
She had accidentally activated Pinkie’s party-cannon, and the moment she turned over desperately to turn it off, it was too late.
The cannon shot her down and every single inch of her body was plastered with confetti. The blast from the cannon sent her backwards, straight into the oven.
Most of the confetti fell from her, down to the floor.
A small yelp escaped her mouth the moment she heard glass shatter and felt something sharp against her back.
The pie! Dash turned over quickly and grabbed the hot form. But…
Something was not right.
The pie was bubbling and it looked like mud on a rainy day. Dash took one step backwards, and everything happened very fast from there.
Her backleg got stuck in the thread of a balloon, and before she knew what had happened, her whole body rotated 180 degrees, leaving her hanging upside down by the leg.
However, the movement shook the pie, and suddenly… it exploded?!
Small clashes of burnt pie were everywhere in the kitchen. Dash was covered in them, and the impact from the explosion made the “Happy Birthday Soarin!” poster fall halfway down.
The whole room was a complete and utter mess. The party cannon had also blown over the bowls and cups she had used while baking the pie, and Soarin’s present bag was laying on the floor, ripped open.
The whole floor was covered in sticky confetti and splatters of pie here and there.
Dash saw movement by the door.
“Hey, Dash...” He didn’t even finish the sentence, just stared at her with wide eyes.
Dash was looking at him while hanging upside down. Soarin looked from her to the mess on the floor, to the destroyed oven, to all the ballons, and then on Dash again. His eyes landed on the malformed pie in her hooves.
Dash saw Soarins eyes flicker while he took in how much of a mess she had made. She just wanted to give him an amazing birthday, and to be a good marefriend, but look how it all ended.
Tears filled her eyes. Instead of the best, she was probably the worst marefriend in the history of Equestria. It felt like somepony had punched her abdomen the moment Soarin’s eyes landed on her again.
“Pie?” Soarin smiled.
The water in Dashes eyes flooded over and she sobbed.
“Dash? Are you alright?” Soarin hurried towards her the moment he heard her cry.
Dash closed her eyes. She was a complete failure.
What if Soarin never forgave her for totally messing up his birthday?
She felt the thread loosen from her leg and she fell right into two strong arms.
Dash buried her face in Soarin’s neck, and cried silently. He was confused about what had happened, but all he cared about was that his beloved mare was crying in his arms and needed to be cheered up.
Soarin carried Dash to her couch, and the moment he delicately putted her down, she covered her head with her hooves and continued to silently cry.
The way her small body was shaking with every sob was heartbreaking to Soarin. He had to do something, but first things first, and that was to clean her up.
“Wait here, Dashie.” He walked quickly to the kitchen and found a paper-roll.
After helping her getting most of the pie out of her hair, he settled down beside her, and folded a wing over her back. She leaned in towards him, still with wet eyes.
“Okay Dash, can you tell me what all that was?”
New water filled her eyes. “I wanted to throw you an amazing surprise party, but I totally failed. I’m a total failure! I’m so sorry Soarin!” Her crying became loud again and she buried her face in his neck.
“But why were you throwing me a surprise party?”
Dashes head shot up.
“Are you kidding me right now? It’s your birthday! I just wanted everything to be perfect, but then I don’t know what happened and…” A hoof touched her lips, preventing her from rambling more.
The tears had made her eyes big and glimmering, and she now looked up at Soarin with them, confused as never before.
Soarin removed the hoof and slowly leaned in to kiss her. But all she got was a kiss on the nose. He had a big goofy smile on his face, something that made her even more confused.
Why wasn’t he mad or sad or disappointed with her?
He probably was, on the inside.
“My birthday is next month.”
“Wait, so that is why I didn’t find anything about it in my calendar!” Dash laughed, while she dried her eyes with a hoof.
She had told Soarin about how she spent the whole day stressing about making the perfect party, but failed at everything.
“Well, even though it’s not my birthday I still appreciate all the trouble you are willing to go through just to make me happy. You are the best.” Soarin leaned in, this time for a kiss on her lips.
The kiss was everything she needed. It was so warm, so passionate and so soft, her insides just melted into a fluffy feather that tickled her like a thousand newly hatched butterflies.
She was the best. She knew that.
But hearing it from her beloved stallion made her even warmer.
She nestled her head into his neck and smelled the fresh scent of wind and sun. Soarin rested his head on top of her's.
This was a precious moment, a perfect moment, making the bond between them even stronger.
Suddenly, Soarin felt something watery under the wing he had folded over Dash. His whole body stiffened the moment he raised up his wing to see what it was.
His light blue wing was soaked with something red, and the source of this was a cut in Rainbow’s back.
“Dash, you are hurt!”
“Huh?” Dash looked at her own back. “ Oh, it must be from when I got smashed into the oven,” she explained, while laughting.
“How can you be so calm about it??? Dashie, you are litrally dying in my hooves!” Soarin panicked.
Dash flattened her brow.
“Soarin, calm down! The cut is barely visible and there are just a few drops of blood!” Rainbow laughed again.
But when Soarin saw somepony precious to him hurt, it didn’t matter how small the injury was, he HAD to help.
Quickly he swiped Dash up and placed her on his back.
“Hey!” But before she could react, they were already outside, soaring through the sky towards Twilight’s library.
After, what Soarin called it “Bandaging the wound” or as Twilight or any other normal pony would call it,“Plastering the small cut”, they flew together around in the moon kissed skies of Ponyville.
They soared through the skies, flew down, and up, and down again, playing while the wind busted their hair. But none of them cared about such superficial matters.
Soarin landed on a cloud to catch his breath, and Dash followed straight after, landing softly on the fluffy surface. She laid down and rolled onto her back.
Beside her, Soarin did the same. He rolled out his wing and stretched out his hooves towards her, pulling her into a tight hug.
Her heart fluttered, instead of making HIM an awesome day, the opposite had just happened. They stared into each other eyes for a long while.
“If you don’t kiss me soon, I’ll kiss you myself!” Dash barked challenging.
“Way to kill the mood, Dash,” Soarin laughed wholeheartedly.
But he knew better than not obey an order from Dash. He pulled her slowly in, and stretched back a few times, just playing with her.
“Not funny,” Dash growled and the same moment she pressed her lips hard towards him, ending in a passionate long kiss.
Soarin pulled back after a few seconds and stared into her beautiful deep magenta eyes, that were reflecting the milky white light of the moon.
“I love you Rainbow Dash.”
“I love you too.” Dash sighed happily, then added, “you goofball.”
Soarin laughted and tightened his grip around her.
Everything felt perfect.
They had their wings and they had each other. And that was everything they needed in life.
The moon carried on with its journey through the dark sky, watching over the two sleeping pegasi.
That was the magic of the night.
Sister sun maybe had the light and the fun, but true love was only revealed in the night, under the unique and enchanting glimmer of moonlight.
You lived by the sun, but loved by the moon.