• Published 19th Jul 2013
  • 5,499 Views, 177 Comments

Rainbow Triumphant - Trinary

AU: A retelling of "Sonic Rainboom" episode, set in Dashverse (A universe where Rainbow Dash became Princess Celestia's student. A follow up to "Rainbooms and Royalty")

  • ...

Chapter 1

Chapter One

Rainbow Dash paced back and forth, critically examining her pupil. “Okay Fluttershy, time to show me your warface.”

It was a beautiful morning (thanks to her own awesome weather skills, Rainbow congratulated herself), and she was spending her lunch in the park with Fluttershy and Dinky Doo.

Dinky looked up, sipping at a cup of juice as she watched from the sides. “Ooh! That sounds dang’rous!”

“Dangerous? Oh my…” Fluttershy eeped, shrinking down slightly. “Could we try practicing cheering some more? I think my screaming and hollering has really gotten better.”

Dash facehoofed. She liked Fluttershy, she really did, but there were sometimes her meek and mild nature could really grate on a pony. “Come on, Fluttershy,” she urged. “I need to have a really strong cheering section to stand out when we get to Cloudsdale!”

As if reading her thoughts, Dinky nodded eagerly to Fluttershy. “Rainbow Dash is gonna be in the Best Young Flyers compe—competing—compe—contest!—with Mommy and Miss Cloud Kicker!”

Rainbow hid a smile behind her hoof as she nodded. The Best Young Flyers Competition wasn’t just any old event. It was the biggest and most important contest for pegasi in the entire year! The Wonderbolts watched the up and coming flyers at the competition and almost all of the Wonderbolts had placed high in such competitions themselves.

If Rainbow Dash was going to make it to the Wonderbolts she had to place well. And by place well, Rainbow meant win. No point shooting for second place, after all. She was shaken from her daydreams of glory when Dinky suddenly gasped, struck by inspiration. “You should sign up too, Miss Fluttershy!”

Fluttershy swallowed nervously. “N-no, thank you, Dinky. I’m not an expert flyer like Rainbow Dash or the weather team. And the idea of all those ponies … watching me …” she squeaked gently. “I’d rather help Rainbow Dash out by cheering for her, like this: Yay.” Rainbow sighed and started doing wing-ups in the grass, hooves folded behind her back as she waited for Fluttershy to muster up the courage to continue.

“A’kay!” Dinky sat back on her safety blanket, Favorite. “So ya gotta do the warface thing, ‘kay? Like this--Grrrrrr!” Dinky growled adorably.

Fluttershy cooed gently at her. “Aww … you mean like this?” The canary yellow pegasus oh-so-gently bared her teeth and gave a slight growl that inspired thoughts of constipation rather than a warface. Still, Dinky decided to humor her by letting out a little squeak and cowering under Favorite, giggling gently. Not catching on, Fluttershy gasped and threw her hooves up to her mouth. “Omygoodness! I'm so sorry Dinky!”

“It's a'kay!” Dink chirped.

But Fluttershy was in full nurturing mode. “I didn't mean to scare you! Oh you must've been so afraid!” She scooped the little filly up and gave her a fierce hug--about the only fierce thing Fluttershy was capable of.

“Only a little, but it's fine! Favorite helps me be brave.” Dinky beamed as she hugged her blanket around herself and Fluttershy. “Do you have a Favorite too? 'cause that might help you be brave.”

“I don't have a Favorite,” Fluttershy answered, smiling as she nuzzled Dinky. “But I do have my teddy bear.”

Dinky looked up at her curiously. “Ooooh! What's his name?” Fluttershy whispered something softly. “Huh?” She leaned closer, tilting her head to better hear her.

“Um, Mister Snuggy-Wuggy Bear.” Fluttershy blushed faintly at the admission.

“Aww!” Dinky squealed. “That's cute!”

Rainbow Dash rolled her eyes and cleared her throat as she finished her wing-ups. “All right, come on guys. There’s gonna be a lot of ponies cheering for me at the competition and I want to be sure that you can stand out.”

“Yeah!” Dinky cheered as Fluttershy set her down. “Cuz yer gonna do the Rainboom and win and be really, really cool!

Her excitement was infectious. Fluttershy started hovering off the ground. “I'm so excited for her I could just--shout!” She took a big, deep breath as Dinky covered her ears with her hooves. “Woo-hoo.” Having gotten that out of her system, Fluttershy looked down at Dinky. “Sorry, I'm just a big old loud mouth sometimes.”

“It's okay! I'm 'cited for Rainbow Dash too! And Mommy!” Dinky beamed.

Fluttershy smiled. “Well you're a very good filly.”

Dinky traced her hoof shyly across the grass and blushed. “Thank you, Miss Fluttershy.”

Rainbow shook her head, almost able to taste the cute in the back of her throat. Then she heard a sound that made her ears perk up. It was the sound of something crashing into the bushes. “By the pricking of my hooves, something derpy this way moves.” She cast a knowing look into the bushes.

Sure enough, a familiar gray pegasus, her mane and coat liberally coated with twigs and leaves, stumbled out of the bushes a moment later. “H-hi everypony!” Derpy sheepishly giggled. “Had a bit of a rough landing...”

Rainbow rolled her eyes knowingly as Dinky quickly scampered over to the newcomer and latched onto her. “Mommy!”

“Muffin!” Derpy beamed as she hugged her back. “Oh my sweet, sweet little filly...”

Fluttershy let out a soft aww before coughing slightly. “Um, excuse me. Sorry about that. Rainbow Dash? I need to go check on the animals before we go to Cloudsdale tomorrow. I need to make sure Angel has everything he needs. I’ll see you later.” She flew off with a wave to Rainbow Dash, Derpy and Dinky.

After she was gone, Derpy looked back to her daughter. “Muffin, were you helping Rainbow Dash get ready for the big competition?”

“You know it!” Dash answered for her, glee written all over her face. “In the Best Young Flyers Competition! Totally gonna win and be awesome!” Dash danced around Derpy and Dinky in a circle, pumping her front hooves up in the air for emphasis.

“Yeah, you are!” Dinky bounced happily around Derpy. “An' Mommy'll win too!”

Rainbow let out an awkward little cough as she stopped dead in her tracks. “Ehehe … uh, sure. I'm sure Ditzy will do awesome too, right Derps?”

Derpy nodded, smiling proudly. “I'm there to have fun!”

“Winnin's fun, right?” Dinky asked innocently.

The grin on Derpy’s face fell a fraction and she started to rub the back of her neck sheepishly. “Well--”

Fortunately, Rainbow Dash knew just what to say. “Sure is!” she rubbed Dinky’s head fondly.

Recovering, Derpy cleared her throat. “It's fun too.”

“But it's more fun when ya win, right?” Dinky pressed. Rainbow started to nod when Derpy’s wing ‘accidentally’ opened up in front of Dash’s face.

“You should always try to win, Muffin.” She nuzzled her daughter, then let her gaze flicker back to Rainbow.. “But if you don't, that's all right too.”

“Huh?” Dinky asked, looking as confused as Rainbow felt.

Ditzy elaborated. “You should try your hardest to win, but go to have fun too.”

Gently pushing Derpy’s wing out of her face, Rainbow stepped forward. “And we are totally gonna have fun by being the most awesome pegasi ever, right Dinks?”

“Yah-HUH!” The little filly bounced up. “'Cause you're jus' that!”

Rainbow mussed Dinky’s mane. “This is gonna be so cool! You and Fluttershy have really been doing good work training to be my--er, I mean our--” she corrected after a sheepish look at Derpy, “--cheering section!”

Dinky gasped loudly in amazement. “Rilly!? We're that good?”

“You're better than good--you're amazing!” Rainbow grinned.

“AWE-some!” Dinky hugged Dash tightly. “Thanks for teachin' us to be so cool! I wanna get it juuuust right for cheerin' you on!”

“Well, I can't wait to show you your very first Sonic Rainboom, Dinks!” Rainbow grinned and booped Dinky’s nose. She was still getting used to being a godmom. Well, sorta; Derpy had asked her way back when she was pregnant with Dinky. Rainbow had even been the first pony--aside from Derpy and the doctors and nurses but they totally didn’t count--to even see Dinky when she was born.

A flicker of guilt made its way into ruining Rainbow’s awesome mood. She used to be really close to Dinky and Derpy, but as she got older and more involved with her training and her lessons with Princess Celestia, she had less and less time to be there as a godmom. She still remembered being stunned when she came into Ponyville right before the Nightmare Moon stuff and seeing just how big Dinky was and how much time she had missed. Totally not cool.

So when Rainbow moved to Ponyville she decided to make up for lost time with her. The more time she spent with her, the more Rainbow wanted to see Dinky happy. “When I do it, it's gonna be for you!”

“Whoooaaaaa...” Dinky said in awe as her nose was beeped.

Derpy laughed as she went over to Dinky and picked her up. “Now that's something to look forward to!”

“Yeah!” Dinky cheered, waving her hooves in the air.

Rainbow flew up a bit. “Come on you two, let’s go into town. Muffins are on me!”

Derpy’s ears immediately perked up. “Muffins?” She quickly scooped Dinky up and deposited her on her back. “Hooray!” The two pegasi took off into town, while Dinky cheered loudly, clinging onto her mother's back.

Her practice session having gone over awesomely, Rainbow Dash zoomed through Ponyville feeling as happy and energetic as Pinkie Pie, tossing out smiles and wave to practically everypony she and Derpy passed.

Afterwards, they stopped in front of Sugarcube Corner and walked inside. Cloud Kicker was just on her way out, and her eyes widened in surprise when she saw Derpy. She hurriedly hid a paper bag behind her back. “Derpy! Rainbow! Hey … what a surprise to see you here.” She grinned awkwardly. “I was just leaving, so … ”

Derpy’s wonky eye started to stray, as if trying to see behind Cloud’s back. She sniffed deeply. “Muffins!”

Kicker groaned. “C’mon Derpy, these are my muffins! There are plenty left for you to--”

“MUFFINS!” Derpy glomped Cloud Kicker, Dinky holding on tightly. With a strain, her tiny horn lit up and Cloud Kicker’s bag of muffins jerkingly made its way over to her.

“Thanks Miss Cloud Kicker!” Dinky beamed. “I can have some of your muffins though, right?” Her pleading look withered CK’s defenses before they could even be formed.

Cloud sighed. “Of course you can…” she looked to the wall-eyed mare still hugging her closely. “...and you too Derpy.”

Rainbow smirked. “Heh, guess I won’t have to pay for the muffins after all.” They quickly moved aside to take up some seats at a nearby table as they began their muffin-brunch.

“So are you guys totally excited or what?” Dash asked, wings buzzing in excitement. “The Best Young Flyers Competition is almost here! And guess who is totally going to enter and own that contest?” She flew up a bit, buffing a hoof against her chest as she puffed up slightly.

“Me!” Derpy smiled widely. “Or--wait, you signed up too, right?”

Rainbow facehoofed.

Cloud Kicker snorted as she elbowed Derpy gently. “Dash, not sign up for a contest? Get real Derpy. I'm in too, by the way.”

Rainbow recovered quickly, grinning. “Oh, I know! This is gonna be awesomely sweet! The three of us are gonna totally own that competition! I mean, I’m going to come in first cuz, let’s face it, after doing a Sonic Rainboom in Nightmare Moon’s face, this contest is gonna be a breeze--but you two are gonna be awesome too!” she added quickly after Cloud Kicker and Derpy gave her a warning look.

Derpy shook her head and chuckled. “Modesty, thy name is Dash.”

“‘Modesty?’” Cloud Kicker repeated in a bad imitation of Rainbow’s scratchier tones. “What sorta made up word is that? Stop making stuff up, Derpy.”

Dash snorted. “Oh ha ha. Very funny, you guys.”

Kicker shrugged. “I thought so.” She nudged Rainbow with a wing. “Seriously though, we know you’re gonna kick major flank in that contest. Just don’t expect us to make it easy for you. We’ll be nipping at your hooves all the way to the winner’s circle.”

Rainbow laughed. “Yeah you will. Hope you’ve got a place on your wall for your second place medal.”

Cloud Kicker shrugged again. “Hey, so long as I place in the top three, I can totally pick up some hotties to celebrate afterwards.” She grinned. “That’s a better reward than any first place tiara, or whatever it is.”

“What?!” Rainbow goggled at her. “Are you saying that you’d rather bang some random ponies you just met instead of getting to spend the entire day with the Wonderbolts?!” She looked to Derpy to make sure she was hearing this correctly. The gray pegasus just shrugged and bit into a muffin.

After thinking for a moment, Cloud Kicker nodded. “You’re right…” she conceded, making Rainbow nod. “It’d be much better if I won and could get a threesome with Soarin’ and Spitfire.”

Dash’s eye started twitching uncontrollably. “Y-you…” She ground out between clenched teeth. Stupid Kicker putting stupid thoughts in her head! Grr!

“Or would you like them to be saved for you?” CK winked at her friend as Rainbow’s face lit up in a mammoth red blush. “Yeah, I thought so.”

“Ugh!” Rainbow threw her hooves in the air as she fluttered up over them. “You’re hopeless!”

Cloud smirked. “Jealous, Dash?”

Rainbow landed back down in her seat and snorted. “In your dreams, Cloud.”

Cloud Kicker tilted her head in thought. “Hmm … yeah, you’d be there. With twins. Ooh, or maybe I could find two sets of twins with you in the middle...”

“Why do I even bother?” Rainbow grunted, shaking her head at CK. She just didn’t get it. This wasn’t any old event--this was the Best Young Flyers Competition! This was her chance to prove that she was just that: the best. The Wonderbolts themselves would be judging the competition, and they’d spend an entire day with the winner. Princess Celestia would be there too! And half of Cloudsdale! Everypony would get to see Rainbow Dash at her best. Let her see why she’s Celestia’s student, why she should be a Wonderbolt. Why they shouldn’t call her Rainbow Crash and dismiss her first Sonic Rainboom as a fake and...

Rainbow blinked. Huh. Thought I was over that. Weird.

“Rainbow?” Derpy fixed her roving eye on her. “Are you okay?”

Quickly shaking out the cobwebs, Dash flashed her a winning smile. “Course I am! I mean, I've totally got this in the bag. I mean, I performed a Sonic Rainboom in Nightmare Moon's face. I'm gonna blow all of Cloudsdale away with it! It's cool that you guys are entering too, but you know you're just competing for second place, right?”

Cloud grumbled slightly. “Yeah, yeah, we get it.”

Rainbow didn’t even hear her. “The Wonderbolts will probably make me a member on the spot!” Her eyes sparkled as she fantasized about donning the blue and gold uniform. She snapped back to reality in time to see Derpy and Cloud looking at her a touch crossly and she guessed that she was overdoing it. “But can you just imagine how awesome it'll be, the three of us showing up and dominating that contest?” She asked eagerly, throwing a hoof around both of their necks. “We're gonna own Cloudsdale, and every loser who ever gave us trouble is gonna choke on our wake!”

Derpy rolled her eyes. “Again; modesty. You should try it sometime, Dash.”

“Oh come on Derpy, I--we--deserve this!” Rainbow insisted. “Just think about all those featherbrains from Flight Camp who called us Rainbow Crash, Derpy Hooves--in a mean way--or Cloud … uh.” She paused. “Okay, so they didn't have a name for CK, but you know they called her nasty stuff. It's time we showed them what we're made of!” She tossed her hooves upward in what she knew was an awesomely dramatic pose.

Derpy looked at herself, then at Cloud Kicker and Rainbow Dash. “Fur and feathers?”

Rainbow facehoofed again. Hard. “Derrrrrrpy...”

The gray mare shot her friend her most bubbly, faux-innocent smile. “Yeeeesss?”

Rainbow shook her head at Derpy’s…derpyness, when the door opened and Applejack, Twilight, Rarity and Fluttershy walked in. She quickly waved them over to the table, Pinkie Pie fetching some additional seats. “Hey guys!”

Applejack tipped her hat as she sat down. “Howdy Rainbow. Cloud Kicker. Ditzy.” She smiled at Dinky. “Sugarcube.”

“I’m not a sugarcube, Imma muffin!” Dinky pronounced grandly, ruining it by giggling as she happily started sipping a celebratory milkshake Pinkie had brought over as a reward for Dinky’s excellent cheering.

Fluttershy meanwhile gently sipped at a special tea she had brought in a thermos.

“You feelin' okay Miss Fluttershy?” Dinky asked, a sentiment echoed a moment later by Rarity.

“I think I strained my voice.” Fluttershy answered in a hoarse whisper. “I'm sorry, Rainbow Dash, I just wanted to cheer for you really hard.”

Dinky hopped off her seat and made her way over to give Fluttershy a get-better hug. “You did a rilly good job, too!”

Rainbow Dash nodded and patted her friend on the back. “S'okay Flutters. You did awesome! I'm sure with a little rest, you'll be all set for the competition!” She looked at the others. “What about the rest of you? All ready to visit Cloudsdale and see the most awesome competition ever?”

Cloud Kicker got up and fetched a tray of extra food back to the table. “Yeah, with Dash, Derpy and me there, it should be an awesome show.”

Rarity daintily bit into a cruller. “Well I certainly love to opportunity to travel.”

“Same here,” Applejack nodded, before adding. “Ah think. Ah dunno about all them clouds, though.”

But Rainbow waved her fear aside with a hoof. “Eh, no big deal Applejack. Twi's got that covered, right Twi?”

Twilight smiled and nodded. “Of course!” She magicked up a scroll with a list. “I have everything ready for our trip. The air balloon is ready, the supplies are packed, and I have the most recent edition of ‘Cloudsdale’s Top Places to Visit.’”

Kicker looked at Twilight. “Cloud-walking spell, or thunderforged shoes?”

“Shoes? But don't those hafta be nailed onto your hooves?” Dinky gulped nervously sinking down in her seat.

A gentle pat on the shoulder reassured Dinky as Twilight looked to Cloud Kicker. “Cloud-walking spell.” She answered both of them at once. “Thunderforged shoes have the disadvantage that they are the only things that actually touch clouds.”

“Oh phew!” Dinky exclaimed gratefully. “'Cause that's too much like gettin' a shot.”

Rainbow privately agreed. Not that she was scared of needles or getting shoes fitted, she wasn’t scared of anything! But she just really didn’t like ponies touching her hooves. Or the idea of ponies hammering things into her. A disgusted look crossed Rainbow’s face as her imagination did Cloud Kicker’s job for her and made a crass innuendo--in Cloud’s voice--about things she’d like to hammer into Rainbow. Stupid Kicker.

Fortunately, Rainbow was saved from her own mind by Twilight’s reassurances to Dinky. “You don't have to worry about shoes until you’re a bit older.”

“Ah'd prefer th' shoes,” Applejack grumbled in between bites into an apple. “It'd at least be sumthin' solid unnerneath mah hooves.”

Twilight looked vaguely offended. “Please, Applejack, magic is perfectly safe.” Applejack didn’t reply but her dubious look said enough. Rainbow bit into a donut and rolled her eyes. If Applejack’s great-great-great grandparents hadn’t done it, she didn’t want any part of it. Of course, this just provided her the opportunity to tease AJ about just how high they’d be when they were in Cloudsdale. Rainbow made a mental note to bring that up at some point during the visit.

“Yeah, the big advantage of shoes is that most ponies don't have a mage on Twilight's level handy to cast spells.” Cloud shrugged, somehow managing to support both ponies at once.

Applejack nodded. “Ain' nuthin' against magic, Ah just prefer sumthin' a little more long-term than a spell.”

“The spell last three days in any event, so there isn't any risk as long as everypony remembers that.” Twilight said. “I even have it scheduled to be renewed every morning just to be safe.”

Rarity idly tapped her hoof against her chin. “I suppose I could try to learn the spell too.”

Twilight’s eyes gleamed. “I'd be happy to teach it to you if you like, Rarity!”

“Can I learn it too?” Dinky asked eagerly.

“Hmm.” Twilight rubbed her chin as she thought. “We can try during your next lesson, Dinky. Though it’s a tricky spell to pull off.

Dinky’s reaction as instantaneous. “YAY!” She got up to give Twilight a milkshake-stained hug. “Thanks!” Twilight’s smile was touch strained as she hugged Dinky back, feeling the glop of the milkshake against her coat.

Rainbow found this rather amusing. “Heh, hey Twi? You got some milkshake right … here.” She tapped the side of her muzzle.

“Muffin…” Derpy sighed as she pulled Dinky back with an apologetic look at Twilight, cleaning her daughter up with a napkin. Once free of Dinky’s grip, Twilight started cleaning herself off as well, albeit somewhat more frantically and vigorously.

“See?” Dash grinned at the others. “Twilight's got it covered! It'll be awesome having you all up there to watch the competition!”

Pinkie bounced excitedly. “Oooh, I'd love to see you make another Sonic Rainboom!”

“Yeah!” Dinky cheered as she squirmed, trying and failing to scramble out of Derpy’s grasp.

“The Wonderbolts will be there! And the Princess!” Rainbow’s eyes were practically shining with glee. “They're all going to see me at my best! This is gonna be the Best. Day. Ever!”

Twilight nodded, taking a small sip of her coffee. “So what does the competition involve?”

Dinky gave the answer Rainbow Dash was thinking. “Flyin', silly!”

Reaching across the table, Rainbow playfully ruffled Dinky's mane. “Yep, you said it kiddo.” Eggheads really do overthink everything.

“It is pretty simple,” Cloud agreed. “Everypony does their routine, and whoever does the best one wins.”

Twilight leaned forward, clearly interested. “Oh, so it’s basically a stunt contest? Like a basic magic duel, but for pegasi.”

Cloud Kicker shrugged. “Well, it's a bit more complicated than that. You get judged on a bunch of different criteria, and they add it all up to decide on your final score.”

“Like coolness, awesomeness, radicalness and style.” Rainbow elaborated.

Twilight looked at her sideways. “…Aren’t those all the same thing?”

Rainbow shot her a flat look. “You just lost fifty awesome points.”

Rolling her eyes, Cloud Kicker decided to translate Rainbowese for those present. “Coolness is more of an internalized thing, while awesomeness is all about impressing others, and being radical is about constantly pushing your limits and exceeding the expectations of others.”

Everypony just looked at her for a second, Dash as surprised as the others. “…how?” She managed to get out.

“Believe it or not, I do pay attention to that kinda thing.” Cloud smiled. “After all, it's important to you.”

“Aww.” Fluttershy whispered, her voice starting to sound better.

Deciding to spare Rainbow the embarrassment of getting all sappy, Cloud went back to her original subject. “The competitions also about the little technical stuff. How well you cross your I's and dot your T's.” She grinned as Derpy gave her a suspicious wall-eyed look.

Pinkie tapped her muzzle, deep in thought. Suddenly her face lit up. “Hey! If Dashie's first Sonic Rainboom gave us all our cutie marks and made us friends, then maybe having a whole bunch of ponies watching it will make us even more friends!” She gasped at the implications. “We'll have friends with a whole city of ponies! So many birthdays! So many parties!” She squealed as she started bouncing and cartwheeling around Sugarcube Corner.

“Is it bad when I have large blocks of time set aside for ‘Pinkie will host a party?’” Twilight asked the rest of the group. As one, everypony shook their head. Even Dinky.

Rainbow Dash coughed. “Right … anyway, there's a whole bunch of cool stuff to see in Cloudsdale! The weather factories, the museums full of ancient Pegasoplis stuff---s'actually pretty cool, not lame like most museums—”

“Hey!” Twilight frowned at the affront to museums and cultural heritage. “Museums aren't boring!”

“Uh, yeah, they are.”

“No they aren't!” Twilight argued. “Why would you think that?”

Rainbow shrugged. “Cuz I get bored whenever I'm in 'em. Duh.” Sometimes it felt like Dash had to explain everything to Twilight.

Cloud Kicker rolled her eyes. “Rainbow just has no appreciation of history.”

“Yes I do,” Dash countered. “Just not the boring stuff.”

“You said the Agricultural Revolution was boring,” Twilight pointed out with a frown.

With a groan, Rainbow rolled her eyes. “Beeecause it was?”

That drew in Applejack, who sounded outraged. “Now how couldja think somethin' as important as th' Agricultural Revolution's borin'!? Why, that helped shape farmin' into what it is t'day!”

“Oh come on Applejack!” Rainbow looked at her as if she had grown a second head. “You can't tell me that farming and watching stuff grow is as cool as watching a Sonic Rainboom!”

“It's far more important!” AJ pressed.

Dash flinched as if stung. “Hey! A Sonic Rainboom saved your life. Twice! From Nightmare Moon and from living a totally boring Manehattanite life!”

“The Agricultural Revolution put more food on more tables'n ever before in history!” Applejack crossed her hooves stubbornly.

Twilight nodded. “I agree with Applejack. The Agricultural Revolution shaped Equestria in many important ways.”

Rainbow Dash crossed her own hooves, no less stubborn than Applejack. “Well, my Rainboom stopped Nightmare Moon. And without it there'd be eternal night and stuff and no crops. So my Rainboom is even more important. So there. Nyah.”

“I'm not saying what you did wasn't important, Dash, just that the Agricultural Revolution was important too--” Twilight began.

Rarity interrupted her and the argument by loudly clearing her throat. “Perhaps we could simply say that both are important, and leave it at that?” After getting all three to nod—some more reluctantly than others—she turned to Rainbow. “What else can you tell us about Cloudsdale, darling? Are there spas, theatres, fine dining?”

Dash grinned. “Oh yeah, the food!” Her mouth watered, clearly displaying her sense of priorities.

“What kinda food?” Dinky asked innocently.

“Pegasus stuff you can only make up in the sky. Cloudberry pie, lightning toasted sandwiches, snow chilled ice-cream…” She rubbed her belly. “Maybe I can get my dad to cook us some authentic pegasi meals. It’s been a while since I had a homecooked meal.”

Pinkie leaned in, almost having her snout touch Rainbow’s. “Your dad? Will we get to meet him?!”

“We could meet your mommy an' daddy?” Dinky gasped excitedly. “That'd be so COOL!”

Derpy agreed. “It's been a long time since we last saw each other.”

“Her parents are pretty nice, right, Fluttershy?” Cloud Kicker asked her. Fluttershy nodded and took another sip of tea.

“Well, I'm certainly looking forward to meeting them.” Rarity smiled.

Rainbow Dash sheepishly rubbed the back of her head. “A heh, sure … I mean, y’know, if we have time and stuff.” She paused as everypony looked at her curiously. “I mean, they could be busy.”

“…too busy to watch you in th’ Best Young Flyers Competition?” Applejack narrowed her eyes, skepticism plain on her face.

Dinky nodded. “You're fibbin', Rainbow.”

That made Rainbow wince. Caught out by the goddaughter. Harsh. “Yeah, well … I mean, I’m sure they’ll be there.” She grinned weakly. “But, they may have different seats or something.”

“Then we’ll just have to hunt them down when they come to see you get first prize,” Cloud Kicker slapped her on the back, smiling. “Won’t we?”

A sickly grimace was all Rainbow could muster. “Yeah … sure.”

“Sounds like a great time.” Twilight smiled at Rainbow. “We're looking forward to you, Cloud Kicker, and Derpy's performance.”

Derpy smiled, hugging her daughter and pulling her into her lap. “Thanks! I'll do my best.”

“Should be pretty good.” Kicker agreed. “Looking forward to making Rainbow work for her win.”

Dash snorted. “Bring it on CK. First place is mine—” She grinned fiercely at Cloud Kicker, but then added “But the top three spots are ours!”

Yeah!” Dinky cheered as she finally wriggled out of her mother’s grip and ran over to glomp Rainbow Dash. “What’re we waiting for already? Let’s go let’s go let’s go!”