Amazingly, the next two classes went by without issue for young Spike.
Even without his friends, AP English with Mr. Dunken turned out to be rather fun, even if it was just first day note-taking. Spike was happy though because none of the bullies that he had encountered earlier during the day were in the class. The other students didn’t seem to even notice that they were sharing their AP class with an eleven year old, they all concentrated on their work without giving him a second look. His next class, pre-algebra, turned out much the same way. Just the way Spike liked it.
Or just the way he would have liked it if not for one simple fact. His thoughts had a mind of their own, and the one thing they wanted to think of was the fact that he had both been kissed by, and kissed, Sweetie Belle. Granted it was only a cheek kiss, something more akin to a peck, but it still caused the boy blush profusely and wish that he could just disappear. That he wouldn’t have to face her again, to face what he… did.
It also didn’t help that any thoughts of not facing her made him feel almost... sad. Almost like a future without her in it was physically painful.
Such thoughts refused to go away, as such it came as a surprise when the bell rung, signaling the end of math. But even that wasn’t the end of it.
“I like Rarity. I’m in love with Rarity, not Sweetie Belle,” Spike whispered to himself without intending to.
Then why did I kiss her?
“It was just a friendly kiss! Nothing more, just like she did to me.”
Was it just friends for her?
Am I sure?
“I… I… umm… I like Rarity though…”
Then why’d you kiss Sweetie?
“It was just a peck on the cheek! and she did it first. This is all her fault. I wouldn’t even be having this conversation with myself if she wouldn’t of…”
“It… It doesn’t mean anything. I love Rarity and that’s the end of it. I’ll just completely ignore Sweetie Belle for the rest of the day and this will all be over.”
“So you don’t want to see her for the rest of the day, huh?” A voice whispered in his ear behind him as he walked down the hall.
Spike had just left his classroom and made his way down the hall towards the cafeteria, but stopped quickly when the voice tickled his ear. His face contorted in confusion as he processed the words the voice said.
“Yes… no… I… um… I mean no. I don’t want to not see Sweetie Belle for the rest of the day. I think.” Spike frowned before his eyes widened, mouth dropped open in shock.
“Soooo you do want to see her.” The owner of the voice walked around him to stand in front of him, casually leaning against the lockers next to them with her arms crossed across her chest, and a smug smile on her lips.
He glared at her. “You’re messing with me, aren’t you, Scootaloo?”
“Hey, I wasn’t the one that got all kissy kissy this morning,” Scootaloo said.
“She kissed me!” Spike protested.
“Oh, what about this?” Scootaloo asked as she held up her cell phone with about ten different text messages between her and Sweetie Belle. Spike didn’t need to read it to know what it said.
“She… told you?”
“And Apple Bloom‽” Spike frowned, his eyes dropping to trace the tiled ground as he kicked his toe at the floor.
“Ye-p,” Scootaloo said popping the p and grinning sharply.
“I’m so bucked…” he mumbled.
“I kissed, I mean… we, um… I…”
“Spike, chillax already,” Scootaloo said with a smile as she wrapped her arm around the boy’s shoulder and they started walking to the lunch room together. “It’s just a kiss, not the end of the world. Here, I’ll show you.”
Spike blushed as he felt Scootaloo peck him on the cheek. “See, nothing big, who cares?” Scootaloo said with a smile.
Spike froze, his feet planted firmly in place as he watched Scootaloo continue walking, her hands clasping behind her back as she tossed a grin over her shoulder.
What. The. Buck. She just kissed me! Scootaloo! Who next Apple Bloom‽ If this is a joke Celestia please end me now where I stand.
“You coming or what?” Scootaloo asked when she noticed he wasn’t following.
“Umm… yeah, coming,” Spike said, a blush on his cheeks as he ran to catch up.
They entered the busy lunch room side by side, their senses took in the smell of freshly cooked foods, the massive number of people all sharing the same place, and the smiling faces of their friends waving them over to the table they procured.
“Shoot, we’re the last ones here,” Scootaloo said with a pouty face. “Rainbow would be pissed.”
“Tell you what, why don’t you go join the rest, and I’ll get us our food.”
“No need for that, Romeo, I’ll get my own.”
Spike laughed, “You’re a friend, Scootaloo. Let me do this for you.”
“You can do girly romantic junk for Sweetie all day long but that crap doesn’t do it for me. Sorry bud,” Scoots patted his chest lightly with a smirk before turning to get in line for her food. “I’ll get yours though. That way you and Sweetie can keep making kissy faces.”
“You said kisses don’t matter!” Spike protested.
Scootaloo blew him a raspberry. “I lied, now go spend time with your girlfriend, pretty boy.”
“She’s not my girlfriend!”
“What’ever you say, Romeo.” The purple-haired sports girl rolled her eyes.
“I like Rarity!” Spike urgently whispered, stomping his foot.
She shot him an annoyed look. “Me thinks thou does protest too much.”
“I’m serious! I don’t like Sweetie Belle, I like Rarity!” Spike shouted, much louder than he intended to, shocking both himself and Scootaloo.
“You don’t… like… me?” A small, sad, high-pitched voice asked from behind him.
The voice was like daggers plunged into his heart.
Spike turned around, the action was the longest in his life, like every half-second was a year. He saw the green-eyed girl with tears starting to form in her eyes. From the looks of things she was about to come up behind him and hug him, but stopped short when she heard his shout.
“Sweetie, I didn’t mean… I… Umm….”
The dam broke and the tears fell, hard. Sweetie turned around and ran as fast as her legs could carry her away from the green haired boy.
“Sweetie,” Spike whispered after her, uncertain how to act.
“Spike!” Scootaloo yelled.
He turned, “What?”
“Go after her, numb nuts!”
“But… but this is your fault! If you hadn’t of pushed me—”
“Shut up and go!” She hit him on the back, the blow pushed him in the direction Sweetie had ran off to.
What have I gotten myself into! I swear if this day doesn’t end soon I’m going to lock myself in my room and never come out again.
Spike took off running, pushing past older students that gave off irritated comments, but the young boy was far too focused on finding his crying friend to care.
Sweetie wasn’t fast, for that Spike was grateful. But for all the time spent with Twilight and his studies, physical attributes wasn’t on the list for improvement or really on the list at all. As such, even though he caught sight of her a few times, it still took him a while to catch up to her. Something only achieved when he saw her round the bend and run outside to the back of the school.
He ran outside the side door after her, his heart felt like it was breaking, not just from the physical exertion but from the mental image of the tears falling from that beautiful young face. When he got outside, his ears almost instantly picked up her sobbing.
He saw her then, she was sitting on the ground against the side of the school, her back rested against the bricks with her knees curled up to her chest. Her soft sobs muffled quietly as she held her face in her hands.
She looked up for a moment, but didn’t have the strength to run anymore. “G-go away, Spike…” Her head dropped back to rest on her knees as her arms wrapped around her legs. Tears still slid down her cheeks but she was no longer sobbing.
“I’m sorry,” Spike said as he approached her to stand in front of her. “I, um…”
“You what?” Sweetie asked, a venomous bite to her tone as her eyes lifted to stare up at him. She didn’t glare, which surprised the young boy. She just looked extremely… broken. The light in her eyes that he had always associated with her was now only bright as embers from a dying flame.
I’m responsible for this… The thought only made him feel worse.
“I didn’t mean it,” Spike said as he slumped his shoulders and sat down on the ground next to her. “Scootaloo was teasing me about the kiss you gave me, and, you know, the one I gave you, and I kinda… said something dumb.”
“You didn’t mean it? What exactly didn’t you mean, Spike? Not liking me or liking my sister.” Sweetie Belle’s voice sounded more hurt than angry, it caused the little boy’s heart to race.
“I… I’m not going to lie, Sweetie Belle. I do like your sister, a lot actually. She’s pretty, gorgeous actually. The most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen! She’s so generous and nice, and always smells so amazing, like flowers! She’s smart and whenever she’s around she just brightens the room.” Spike sighed dreamily, the memory of his beloved kissing his cheek the first day she met him drifting through his mind before he shook the thought away.
Every platitude the young boy placed at her sister’s feet caused Sweetie’s heart to jump that much further into her throat.
Spike paused when he saw the look of utter pain on her beautiful face.
What am I doing? I just made this worse! Quick, fix it. Say something, stupid!
“But I… ummm…”.
Great going Boy Genius. So articulate with your words. Ugh… even I’m mad at me, and I’m me!
“But what, Spike?” Sweetie asked. Her voice seemed neutral, devoid of any emotion, almost like what he said next would decide more than Spike could ever guess.
“I like you, too…” Spike admitted, surprising himself more than anyone else. What‽
“You… like me?” Sweetie asked. “Like, as a friend?” Her tone, the way she said it, was almost almost like it hurt her to say it.
“I um…” Spike looked up at her. He wanted to lie, he wanted to tell her yes, as a friend. But he couldn’t, not while staring into those green eyes, her pink and purple hair, the way the white-dress uniform made her seem simply angelic. Not to mention her perfume, that even now penetrated his senses, leaving him weak-kneed.
He just couldn’t do it.
I… do I like Sweetie? Obviously I like her, she’s my friend. But I mean, like-like? Like I do with… Rarity? He glanced up, her face… there was something about it, even upset, it made him happy to see it.
I… do I? I… umm.. I don’t know. What did Twilight say? Start with what you do know. So… what do I know? He looked up again, his eyes taking in the young girl’s features, the soft look of her cheeks, the dried tears resting upon them. I know I never want to see tears in those eyes again.
“Spike?” Sweetie asked as she frowned. “Sorry for putting you on the spot like that, you don’t have to answer. I shouldn’t have asked, I—”
“No,” Spike interrupted. No? Okay… not what I was going for. Try again. Be confident.
“No?” Sweetie asked curiously, her hand coming up to wipe her tears away.
That’s not being confident!
Spike lowered his head and looked down at the ground. He didn’t want to do this, he didn’t want to face this. He wanted to run away, to leave this school and never return. Just as he had planned to do at the beginning of the day until she and her friends had stopped him. And yet, every time he considered doing just that right now, he could only picture Sweetie Belle crying. The thought was more dreadful than anything else he could think of. Even beating out the one time he had lost Smarty Pants and had to admit it to his sister.
Granted we found the doll in my laundry hamper, it still caused Twilight to enter panic mode until we found it. That lecture about being conscious of your surroundings was totally a blast. Not. But this...
That had been the worst day he could remember since joining the Sparkle household, and somehow, picturing Sweetie crying again beat it hands down.
I-I don’t know if I like Sweetie like I do Rarity, but I can’t deny I like her more than my other friends. Maybe more than even… Twilight. Ugh, I’m so confused, where’s Shining when I need him?
“What I mean is… Sweetie Belle, I... it’s that I—” Spike tried again only to bite his tongue. What do I even mean!
“Spike really, it’s okay—” Sweetie attempted to grab his hand but he pulled away.
Ugh, how do I tell her how I feel even when I don’t know how I feel? I’m too young for this, I shouldn’t be dealing with this, any of this! But… she makes me… happy. I like it when she’s around, and I miss her when she’s not… I like to see her smile, laugh, and when she kissed me; it was nothing like when Scootaloo did. I um… His hand came up to his cheek. He could still feel the warmth of her lips, could still picture every detail of the moment she kissed his cheek, and… when he did the same to her.
It hadn’t been intentional, completely on instinct, almost as if he had been kissing Twilight’s cheek, or his mom, and yet…
“No! No it’s not okay! I made you cry, Sweetie Belle! I kiss you, and then brag about how hot I think your sister is after telling the world I don’t like you?” Spike dropped his head into his hands, clenching his teeth. How could I be such a jerk to someone I love. Wait… what?
Spike stood up, brushing the dirt off from his uniform with his hands. He finally knew what he wanted to say, some of it anyway. “I do like you and no, not just as a friend.” The words were… right. They felt natural, like they simply should be.
“W-what‽” Sweetie stared up at him, shocked.
“You asked me if I only liked you as a friend. The answer is no. I don’t like you as just friends. I may not know much of anything about romance stuff, but I know this. You’re one of my closest friends in the entire world Sweetie, and I’d never do anything that would intentionally hurt you; but… I know that what I’m feeling right now is something more than just friendship, and if you’d like maybe together we can figure out what that... exactly is. So… what do you say Sweetie Belle? Will you give this a shot?”
“Us, give us a shot?”
In answer, Sweetie got up quickly and hugged him, wrapping her arms around him and pressing her chest against his. She was taller than the boy, but not by that much, his head rested against the nape of her neck, and he breathed in deeply. Immediately his own arms wrapped around her, and he hugged her back with all his might. “I’m so sorry I made you cry, Sweetie. I promise I’ll try my best to never do it again.”
“Spikey,” Sweetie cooed back.
“Get a room you two,” Scootaloo’s voice rang out.
“Scootaloo! What’d ya go in do that fer? Now they know we were watchin’!” Apple Bloom’s voice followed immediately after, just as Scootaloo’s laughter broke out.
Spike’s blush was all consuming. But when he tried to pull away from Sweetie’s grip, the girl just didn’t want to let him go.
“Sweetie, the poor boy will permanently turn a new shade of pink if ya don’t let him go,” AB said with a smile.
“Couldn’t you guys just give us a single moment?” Spike said, annoyed.
“Nope,” Scootaloo answered. “She’s our best friend and we gotta make sure you do right by her or you have to deal with us.”
“Lunch is almost over anyway, so we brought yer meals out here for ya’,” Apple Bloom shoved the ‘intimidating’ pseudo-angry-faced Scootaloo out of the way as she walked over to the hugging couple.
“Hey! I was trying to—”
“Oh shut up and get over here, leave em be. Ah think Spike’s been through enough today.”
“Yeah… I guess you’re right. But mess up Romeo, and you’ll be getting a grand tour of the bottom of my sneakers!”
“Scootaloo!” Sweetie Belle finally let go to toss a glare at her closest friend.
“What‽” The sports girl just raised her hands into the air questioningly.
Spike just sat down next to Apple Bloom, his eyes watching as his new… girlfriend? as she bickered with her friend over being over-protective.
“Soo Spike, how’s school going fer ya now?” Apple Bloom asked, handing over an apple and a chocolate milk.
He took the items with a nod of thanks and looked over to the school itself, before glancing over to Apple Bloom, Scootaloo and then, finally, Sweetie Belle. She smiled at him, that lovely grin upon her face as their eyes met. “Best day ever.”
Sweetie Belle latched onto his arm and rubbed her cheek against it in joy at hearing his answer. He smiled as he laid his chin atop her head. Truly, he didn’t know if she was now his girlfriend, if they were a couple, if they’d now kiss, hold hands, go on dates, or anything like that. But, right this second, he didn’t really care either. Everything just felt… right.
Sure, it could go downhill again, and quickly. But that was future Spike’s problem.
Present Spike was enjoying the moment. A moment he didn’t want to end.