• Published 3rd Nov 2019
  • 1,041 Views, 24 Comments

Our Day in Disdain - Rainb0w Dashie



Rainbow Dash is forced to confront the ghosts of her past and the life she left behind. Lest the one she built for herself crumbles in her hooves.

  • ...
7
 24
 1,041

Chapter Nine: Barely Contained Rage

The creak of hinges brought Dashie out of an unrestful sleep. She listened, but all she could hear was the wind fighting with the silence. She fell back asleep.

Again she was roused, by coughing this time, not her own. She laid very still, listening for the source of the noise, but again, she heard nothing.

“Maybe she’s in the living room?”

She opened her eyes. Darkness draped over the furniture, the curtains, and the walls. There was nothing there.

A rustle disturbed the quiet. Dashie moved her eyes towards the direction of the sound and in the doorway two ponies peered into the room.

She froze. A third pony appeared, this one carrying a small lantern in his mouth that lit up the entire room. Dashie swallowed.

“I see her there, in the corner!”

***

It was well past 9 pm by the time Rainbow Dash made her way back into Ponyville. The town was silent and dark, except for the Town Hall which was full of light, piercing through the dark night sky like a lighthouse on the coast. A beacon in an otherwise shadowy town; drawing her like a moth to a flame.

Rainbow Dash made a quick descent and glided to a landing on the Town Hall’s’ portico. There she was greeted by Pinkie Pie, who was practically dancing with anxiety.

“Pinkie Pie, what’s going on?” Rainbow Dash said, removing her flight goggles. “Why did I get an emergency telegram saying I had to be here as fast as possible? I didn’t even have time to change out of my Wonderbolts outfit.”

“It’s really bad, Rainbow Dash,“ Pinkie Pie dragged Rainbow Dash by the hoof. “You have to see this.” She said as the two mares passed through the double entrance doors.

Rainbow Dash could hear the rumble of a crowd before she even stepped into the foyer, but as she entered the assembly it sounded like the inside of an angry beehive. The room was packed to the rafters with the entire town’s adult populace; all shouting over each other trying to make themselves heard.

Rainbow Dash removed her hood, and her rainbow-colored hair fell over her forehead. She looked around the hall in mute confusion, trying to understand the demonstration of fear and anger that was raging on in front of her. some of the ponies were crying, others held their hooves over their face in shock and disbelief, a few even looked full of rage they were barely able to contain; and everypony was talking at once.

“...it really her?”

“...she was going to do it again, I just know it....”

“...paralyzed from the neck down and...”

“...not safe in this town as long as…”

“What’s going on?” Rainbow Dash pantomimed to Pinkie, who only responded by pointing to a separate bit of commotion going on somewhere deeper inside the crowd.

Rainbow dash pushed her way through the crowd, leaving Pinkie Pie by the entrance as she worked her way towards the center of the room where she could see a grey-coated pony tied to a chair. The town’s mayor was also there, trying to keep the crowd at a respectable distance while one of her staff members tried to talk to the pony.

And as Rainbow Dash pushed through the last layer of crowd, she could see the pony’s coat wasn’t actually grey -but blue- like her own, but soiled with dirt and dried blood. The pony’s head hung weakly, and Rainbow could see splotches of purple, red, and pink in the peeking through the pony’s dirty mane.


“All you have to do is tell us why you did it, Dashie.” The staff member said to the pony in the chair. “we’re not going to hurt you.”

“What the hay is going on here?” Rainbow Dash said as she approached the scene. “What are you doing to her?”

“she’s a murder!” Voices shouted from the crowd.

“She tried to kill Twilight”

“She’s a monster”

“Please everypony.” Mayor Mayor mare said, failing to keep order “One at a time.”

Rainbow Dash asked again, having to yell just to be heard, but the crowd grew louder and even more incoherent.

The rainbow mare grit her teeth and her wings flared. With one strong beat of her wings Rainbow Dash whipped up a gust of wind powerful enough to force everypony in the crowd to take a reflexive step backwards, and before they could even think to react the wind was followed by a resounding clasp of thunder the rattled the clerestory windows in their frames; and in a moment’s instance everypony was silent.

“Now does somepony want to explain to me just what the hell is going on?” Rainbow Dash ordered as the last echoes of her thunder finally faded. “Why is she tied up like this?”

“Ww-we were just trying to find out what she was doing in Ponyville” The mayor’s staff members said. Rainbow Dash knew him as Rocky Inkwell, an earth pony with sandy brown hair and a silver coat who, for lack of better words, Rainbow found to be very generic. Not that there were any hostilities between the two, she just never had an affinity for somepony as by the books as he was “She sent somepony to the hospital and we just wanted to know why.”

“It was Twilight!” a mare from the crowd yelled with a hilt to her voice. “She broke Twilight’s back!”

The crowd began to murmur again, but before they could get any roudier Rainbow Dash barked at the crowd to be quiet. She then turned back to Rocky.

“What’s this about Twilight now?” She said before finally getting a good look at the mare in the chair. “Dear Celestia, what did you do to her?”

Rainbow Dash pushed past the staff member out of the way and inspected the mare’s wounds.

“Her nose is broken and her right eye is almost swollen completely shut.” Rainbow Dash said. “You just tied her up like this? Why didn’t you take her to the hospital?”

“We… We weren’t trying to hurt her...” Rocky said timidly.

“Well what were you trying to do?”

Rocky couldn’t formulate a coherent answer under Rainbow’s intimidating tone and line of questioning.

“Answer me!” Rainbow yelled as she grabbed Rocky by the scruff of his collar “If you weren’t trying to hurt her then what were you trying to do? Because she looks pretty hurt to me.”

“We were just trying to make her leave town” Rocky managed to whimper out after Rainbow Dash tossed him to the ground. “Rough her up a bit, you know? Scare her into leaving.”

“We?” Rainbow Dash asked. “Who else was doing this with you?”

“There weren’t many.” Rocky said. “Just a few ponies I was able to get together when we saw her coming into town. Pulled her into the alley as she was walking past the antique shop.” Rainbow Dash leaned forward to shift her weight and the pony instinctively covered his face as if Rainbow Dash was going to strike him. “But we weren’t going to hurt her. Honest! We just wanted to scare her into never coming back. But that was before she hit cheerilee with a bottle and Cheerilee went berserk on her.”

“And she deserved it too!” Cheerilee shouted from the crowd.

Rainbow Dash turned to face Cheerilee and was greeted by the angry purple mare looking back at her through several bandages covering one half of her face.

“And what happened to you?” Rainbow Dash said exasperated. “What did you all do to each other? I leave for a week and you all practically kill each other.”

“She blinded me, that’s what happened.” Cherilee spat with barely contained rage while she talked. “Hit me right over the eye with a bottle and the glass destroyed my cornea. I’m completely blind in my left eye now.”

A small murmur started brewing in the crowd again, responding to cheerilee's energy.

“Have you all gone crazy?” Rainbow Dash practically yelled. “ Celestia could have all of your hooves for malfeasance if word of this got back to her.”

The crowd reeled back as if in horror and the murmurs changed to that of fear instead of anger; even Cheerilee’s.

“..really do that, can she?”

”... ancient law..”

“...I’d flee to Griffonstone before I let somepony cut off my hooves...”

“That law was written over a thousand years ago,” a pony finally spoke up. “There’s no way it still holds true today.”

“Well what else would she do in a situation like this?” Rainbow dash looked back at Dashie, who had not moved at all since she’d got there, and then at Rocky who was still on the ground. “We have at least five ponies pre-meditatively attacking another mare way past the point of physical harm.” she looked at the crowd this time. “And what would you all have done to her if I didn’t show up today? You all would’ve probably killed her. And what then?”

Nopony spoke.

“And what then?!” Rainbow Dash yelled. “What would have happened if you cowards ended up killing her? What would Celestia do?.. What would I Do?” Rainbow Dash paced frantically. “She’s just one pony, for crying out loud. One pony, beaten to a pulp and tied to a chair. Look ‘it! Nopony even bothered to take off her saddle-bag. How fair is that?”

“Now wait a minute” Cheerilee said with real fear in her voice. “We didn’t do any of that to her. I only hit her in the stomach.”

“You kicked her in the face, Cheerilee.” Rocky said, too afraid to get off the ground. “You kicked her hard enough to flip her over, then you started hitting her in the stomach.”

“Yeah… I guess I did.” Cheerilee said, hints of shame starting to flavor her tone. “But I don’t know how any of that other stuff happened. Her eye, the cuts on her hooves. That had to’ve happened after we left.”

“She couldn’t have just done it to herself” Rainbow Dash said, her voice giving out slightly at the end, her throat sore from all the yelling. “And why would you just leave her?”

“We had to get Cheerilee to the hospital” Rocky said, looking up at Rainbow Dash. “She was going to bleed out.”

Rainbow Dash shuddered violently before reeling around.

“WHY DIDN’T YOU TAKE HER TO THE HOSPITAL TOO?!” Rainbow hollered as she picked the pony up by the collar again and slapped him repeatedly. “HER. NOSE. WAS. BRO. KEN.”

She left him on his hooves this time.

“Why didn’t any of you think to take her to the hospital the minute you saw her like this?!” She said to the crowd, pointing back at Dashie. “Look at her, the damn thing can’t even hold her head up.”

The members of the crowd were slowly starting to come back to their individual senses. Some mares in the crowd could be heard audibly sobbing. “I’m so sorry, Celestia.” another could be heard calling out, and ultimately the angry hive-mind had departed once they saw Rainbow Dash repeatedly strike the staff member of the mayor. who had been completely silent during the entire commotion.

“Untie her right now.” Rainbow Dash said after regaining some of her own composure. “I’m taking her to the hospital.”

Rocky Inkwell didn’t argue and untied Dashie as fast as she could. Dashie got up from the chair slowly. Crying out in pain as just the motion of standing up clawed at the many different wounds on her body. When she was finally standing on all four hooves she shook like a newborn foal.

“She still needs to answer to her crimes” a stallion called out “She’s seriously injured three ponies now.. Something has to be done about it. “

“She hasn’t said a word since she was brought here,” another pony in the crowd responded. “I think she has a concussion.”

“We can’t just let her trot on out of her though.” The stallion replied. “She put Twilight in the hospital, she committed a crime and she has to answer to it.”

Rainbow Dash pressed a hoof to her forehead and let out a frustrated sigh.


“Alright, fine.” Rainbow said. “I’ll take her to the back room and try to get her side of what happened. But if she’s in no condition to talk I’m taking her right to the hospital. She needs serious medical attention.”

The crowd murmured to themselves before ultimately agreeing, and Rainbow Dash began to take Dashie to the back room. Dashie tried walk on her own but could not even support her own weight, so Rainbow Dash slung Dashie’s hoof over her shoulder and helped her to the back room.

“We have to go to the hospital.” Dashie said weakly.

“I know.”

“...Where are we going?” Dashie said, confused, as if forgetting what she had just said.

Rainbow Dash shut the door behind them as they stepped inside the backroom which served as a reserve waiting room for clients waiting to have meetings with the mayor. Rainbow Dash laid Dashie down on of the couches and took a moment to collect herself. She took some steady breaths as she listened to rhythmic ticking of a nearby clock, the sigh of the wind coming through one of the windows that wasn’t closed properly, and the far away chatter of office workers in other rooms trying to get the last of their work done for the night.

Rainbow Dash’s ears were ringing, and her body shook from adrenaline. When she was finally able to compose herself, when she was sure she wasn’t going to throw up her dinner, she looked down at the mare on the couch and asked flatly:

“What are you doing here, Chroma?”

Dashie didn’t say anything, or even look at Rainbow Dash for that matter.

“Chroma, I’m talking to you.” Rainbow Dash said with more authority this time. “Why did you come here?”

Dashie shut her eyes, like a child being scolded.

“Answer me Chroma!”

“I came here looking for you.” Dashie finally said.

“But.. why?” Rainbow Dash said “Why this town? You know after what happened last time how this town is. You know you were ordered never to come back.”

“I didn’t have anypony else to go to.” Dashie was actually crying, which is why she wasn’t meeting Rainbow Dash’s gaze. “You know that.”

“But you were all the way in Manehattan.” Rainbow Dash said, taking care to try and control her tone. “Didn’t you get picked up by a family out there?”

“No!” Dashie cried out “Everypony else did. Nopony wanted a foal as old as I was, a foal who couldn’t fly, a foal ‘who had tendencies like mine’” She said with sarcastic air quotes. “Then when I got too old they told me I could no longer stay at Second Stable. They kicked me out!”

“Aren’t they supposed to give you money or something when that happens?” Rainbow Dash was having a hard time maintaining her anger. As tough as she was, she was still a woman and with the mare before her - bruised, dirty,crying- she could feel maternal instincts taking control and wanted nothing more than to nurture this mare, to hold and coddle her and wipe her tears away; even though it would most likely stain her fur with how dirty the mare was.

“They did.” Dashie said wiping her eyes to no avail. “But it was only enough to afford a train ticket. It’s nothing but luxury apartments and studio homes in Manehattan. I couldn’t even buy any food out there, let alone a flat or an apartment. So I came here to look for you.”

“Look Chroma” Rainbow Dash sighed. “I-”

“It’s Dashie.” She said sheepishly.

“What?” Rainbow Dash said.

“Dashie…” She said again. “My name is Dashie.”

“No…” Rainbow Dash’s voice rumbled like thunder. “It’s Chroma.”

“But everypony calls me Dashie.”

Something snapped inside Rainbow Dash. Some complex emotion that comes from the combination of the fatigue from flying an hour straight in a spandex flight-suit that doesn’t breathe, the adrenaline from standing up to a pissed off town ready to lynch a seriously wounded mare, and the confusing maternal instincts swelling up inside of her. Something that her brain was not ready to process yet and instead defaulted to her anger.

“Your name is Chromatic Strokes.” Rainbow said with such sudden intensity that it caused Dashie jump back in shock. “My name is Dashie. Was Dashie, but you stole it from me.”

“I didn’t steal it” Dashie said indignantly. “Everypony started calling me that.”

“No!” Rainbow Dash was yelling now. “Pinkie Pie started calling me Dashie, and you liked the way it sounded so much that went around introducing yourself as Dashie. That was my nickname, and you took it from me just like you took my clothes, my toys, and whatever else that I had but you didn’t” Rainbow Dash pressed her hoof twice into Dashie’s chest for emphasis.

“I just wanted to be like you.” Dashie said almost inaudibly, trying to choke back the pain in her chest.

“Look Chroma, I don’t care!” Rainbow Dash said.“Just like always I’m stuck cleaning up your messes. This is supposed to be my weekend off from the wonderbolts. I was expecting to come back home and celebrate the biggest accomplishment in my life but instead I have to go back out there and try to convince an entire town not to murder you… And I don’t even want to know what you did to Twilight,”

Rainbow Dash turned her back on Dashie “Knowing your history she probably said something you didn’t like and you attacked her for it.”

“I didn’t mean to hurt her.” Dashie said ashamed. “it was an accident.”

“I said I don’t want to know.” Rainbow Dash waved her hoof dismissively “Just get out of here before the whole town decides to kill you. And if you go anywhere, take yourself to the hospital first.”

Dashie tried to reach out to Rainbow Dash, to get her to turn around and speak to her, but it was no use. Rainbow Dash was dedicated to her stubbornness and would say nothing more to Dashie.

“Fine… I’l leave” Dashie said after a moment, but not before fishing something out of her saddlebag and offering it to Rainbow Dash. “Here, I want you to have this before I do.”

Rainbow Dash looked back to see Dashie holding a photograph in her mouth.

“Fine.” She sighed and took the picture.

Rainbow Dash looked at the picture, and Dashie memorized the details of her face, as if she were seeing it for the first time.

Rainbow Dash did not look away from the picture, nor did she say anything in response. Instead, in a moment of looking, her face regained all the tired lines the pleasures of her life had smoothed away. The comforts of Ponyville and the accomplishment of becoming a Wonderbolt were erased in a second, leaving nothing in her eyes but emptiness and ache. For a moment, fierce longing and regret fought across her face.

Then they were gone, and when she looked up so too was Chroma; leaving only the faded photograph of Rainbow Dash and a mare called Dashie.