• Published 27th Jan 2014
  • 11,058 Views, 185 Comments

Not Another Alicorn! - LordBrony2040



Nothing to see here folks just another lousy fic combining alicorn ascension, divine parentage, and the fallout one of the episode we just don’t talk about aka Mare Do Well.

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Chapter 5

Chapter 5: Echoes

Luna paced back and forth as Celestia finished her explanation. By the time she had herd the whole thing, she was leaving cracks in the floor. Luna didn’t know whether to be sickened, or angry at the things Celestia had just told her. “Tia, this is…how could you?”

“It was my daughter Luna! If it meant saving her I would have done anything! So I took every option open to me!” Celestia defended herself.

“YOU USED NECROMANCY!” Luna shouted. “That art is an affront to everything we stand for! A bastardization of life!”

“Andromeda’s experiments-”

“DO NOT SPEAK THAT NAME IN MY PRESENCE!” Luna shouted as her eyes began to glow.

Celestia frowned at her sister's reaction. “Do not act as if you are the only one she caused pain sister.”

The two goddesses locked eyes and wills, and Celestia turned away. “It didn’t even work,” she said before lowering her head to hide the gathering tears. “What did come of it only seemed to mock me. Every one of them mock me.”

As she watched her sister cry, the anger drained from Luna and she sat down on the carpet. “She called me that stupid name…you know, the one she made for me when she was still too young to say princess, right?”

Celestia giggled. “You hated that name. I think that’s why I encouraged her to keep doing it.”

Luna was silent for a moment. “No I meant,” she said before shaking her head to clear the confusion. “No I meant Rainbow Dash, she called me P-Lu. You‘re right, it is rather confusing. If it wasn‘t for the cloud, even their cutie marks would be identical.”

“…wait, what?” Celestia asked before her brow furrowed.

“Their cutie marks,” Luna repeated. “I know it’s odd to see a rainbow lighting bolt but plenty of ponies have identical or similar-”

Celestia raised a hoof to silence her. “No not… Is Rainbow Dash asleep at the moment?”

The question made Luna quirk an eyebrow. “Sister?”


An hour later, the two sisters walked out of the new princess’s bedroom while Rainbow’s snoring echoed throughout the halls.

“That’s not possible.”

Luna raised an eyebrow as she finished closing the door to Rainbow’s quarters and followed her sister down the hallway while the larger mare slowly shook her head in defiance of what she had just seen. After catching up with Celestia, she let out a soft humph. “Oh, so now you believe me. Well, give me a fitting explanation then.”

The pair turned down the hall and came out to a balcony that overlooked the castle gardens. Celestia looked down at her hedge maze and sighed. “Thankfully I cleared my schedule for tomorrow,” she mumbled to herself before addressing Luna. “I’m going back to our old castle to check up on my research notes. I want you to pay our sister a visit.”

“Sister-”

“I know this might be…hard for you Lulu,” Celestia told her with empathetic eyes before the goddess steeled herself. “But I just studied Necromancy, Andromeda invented it. If anypony knows what’s going on, its her.”

The goddess of the night let out a growl, but nodded in consent. “Very well. But you know how much I hate pulling an all-dayer.”


The one thing that Rainbow Dash absolutely hated about her apartment in the palace was that it had a perfect view of the rising sun. The onslaught of light that awoke her far too early wasn’t stopped by the frilly pink curtains that covered her window. Even when she didn’t have work to do, her mother’s celestial object kept her from sleeping in.

Of course, the knocking on the door didn’t help much either.

Rainbow Dash let out a moan and rolled out of bed before getting the kinks out of her wings and flapped over to the door. “Hey, what’s so-oh, it’s you,” she mumbled as she noticed Cadence was the one standing on the other side of the door instead of Twilight.

“Good morning Rainbow Dash,” Princess Cadence said a little too chipper for someone who had just gotten out of bed. “I thought we might do something together this morning since we got off to a bit of a rocky start.”

“Isn’t it a little early for…hay, anything?” she asked.

Cadence giggled and her horn lit up to float Dash out of her room. “Oh come on. I’ve been wanting to talk to you since yesterday and the spa is the perfect place for some mare bonding.”

The word spa brought a shiver down Dash’s spine, and she struggled with her four legs to get out of Cadence’s telekinetic grip. “Okay seriously, if you don’t put me down right now. I’m going to start trying to use this thing,” she told the pink pony. “And I will not be held responsible for whatever I turn you into.”

As Rainbow Dash lowered her horn at Cadence, the pink princess quickly released her and Rainbow Dash fell to the ground. “Happy?”

“No,” Rainbow replied before she got back on her hooves. “And what the hay are you trying to drag me to some stupid spa for?”

Cadence frowned and threw her caution to the wind and went with the bold truth rather than sugarcoat it. “Because your mane’s a mess, your hooves look like they haven’t ever been treated, your tail looks like its had something living in it, and…actually, your wings are in pretty good shape.”

Oh great, it’s an alicorn version of Rarity, Rainbow thought with a frown. Then she kept the expression focus at the pink mare before she spoke. “My mane, my hooves, and my tail, none of them your business.”

Since her disagreeable companion was throwing out all semblance of manner, Cadence thought it best to do the same. While some negotiations worked on courtesy, she knew from personal experience being blunt was a tactic that was sometimes needed. “What’s your problem? I’m trying to be nice!”

“Then maybe you shouldn’t drag me out of bed and try and ship me off to some stupid spa!” Rainbow shot back.

Instead of taking the bait Rainbow was offering and getting into an argument about the merits of a spa treatment, Cadence decided to use reason to persuaded her. “You need to have your appearance done before your interview today!” Good old angry reason.

“I-my-wha?” Rainbow Dash managed to get out as Cadence’s words derailed her train of thought and sent it off a bridge to crash into a river of confusion below.

“Celestia scheduled an announcement yesterday in which she intended to show you to the kingdom and take questions. However, you fell asleep and Twilight begged her off,” Cadence explained with a frown. “So, you need to be made presentable.”

Rainbow grit her teeth. “You mean I gotta prop myself up like some kind of…” She didn’t even know a bad enough word for what Cadence was suggesting.

“Fake? False idol? Beauty pageant contestant?” she supplied before her expression softened. “Trust me, I know what its like. When I’m away at the Griffin Empire, it’s even worse. At least in the palace I can show everypony the real me. Over there, I can’t even use my preferred name. Mi Amore Cadenza, ugh.”

The new topic didn’t last long, but Dash felt some connection to the other princess. “So how come I have to get all…glamored up? I thought this title would let me do things my way. Isn't that one of the princess perks?”

Cadence gave her a small smirk that seemed to radiate warmth. “I’ll tell you a little secret about being a princess. We may be the rulers of this nation, but our people’s expectations are what rule us. We have to be their definition of perfection in order to make them feel safe and secure.”

“You stole that from Luna,” Rainbow said with a smirk.

“…Celestia actually,” Cadence corrected her with a blush at being caught mimicking another princess’s wisdom.

“No, pretty sure it was Luna,” Rainbow argued. She could remember her aunt giving that long speech on her private balcony after…when… Well, she was pretty sure it had been last night. That was the only time Dash really talked to Luna before.

The other alicorn’s stubbornness brought a frown to Cadence’s face. “Care to place a wager on that?” she asked. Luna had been imprisoned for her entire life up until Twilight and the others had freed her from the Nightmare, the fact that Rainbow Dash was arguing on her with such an impossible point irked the rational pony to no end.

“Okay! What do you want to bet?” Rainbow asked.

Cadence got a slightly less than loving smile as her head swam with the possibilities, but she settled on something that would help her task of preparing Rainbow for her interview. “If I’m right, we go to the spa.”

“Okay, and if I’m right…you have to…um…dye your hair green!”

“I…where did that come from?” Cadence asked. When Rainbow looked as clueless as her and just shrugged, she held out her hoof. “Deal.”

Once the agreement was made, Cadence motioned with her head for Rainbow to follow her down the hall. “Come on, Celestia’s teaching Twilight at the School for Gifted Unicorns.”

-Meanwhile at The School for…you know what, we’re just calling it SGU-

“Oh no you don’t!”

Pinkie Pie?

“We are in no way shape or form ever going to make any connection to that horrible spin-off series which ended the Stargate franchise!”

But-

“NO!”

Sigh

-The School for Gifted Unicorns-

Twilight worked furiously to take notes as Celestia continued her lecture on the ethical use of magic. It was times such as these why Twilight realized the sun goddess only took the best of the best for her personal students: Twilight didn’t think there were that many ponies who could keep up with her verbal instruction.

Although an all around wonderful teacher overall, Celestia’s one weakness was when it came time to give academic lectures to her students. In her defense, Celestia was more of a hands on doer kind of teacher that liked to teach via demonstration and interaction. There was also the fact that she had to cram a lot of teaching into a rather limited schedule. Because of this, when it came to lessons that were strictly explanation, Celestia doled out the information as fast as possible and woe be to any of those who would ask a question.

“Now we come to the question of the subject of the constructs themselves,” Celestia said as she continued her lesson while Twilight nodded. Although the class was a ‘refresher’ course in ethics, it seemed to deal more with the ethical considerations surrounding ancient magic that Twilight didn’t even know existed before Celestia mentioned it.

The question of why Celestia was teaching her such things did enter Twilight’s mind, but she had no idea as to what the answer was and had yet to ask.

“As I stated previously, the power and desire of the caster shapes the construct’s will and complexity. Some of them can do little more than follow simple commands, while others have the full range of emotions. But what is the ethical ramifications for this magic? Certainly it would seem that creating simple constructs to say…assist the less-able ponies that are getting on in years around would be a good thing?

“But what of say…well, any job really,” she continued. “Construction? Labor? Perhaps we could also use them as guards and soldiers in case something should threaten our nation. While it would save lives, could there also be a downside to such an action?

“What of the constructs themselves? Is it right to create them in the first place? If a being can respond to commands, then it must have some measure of intelligence, and as the spark of life comes from magic, can their existence be called a form of life?”

Twilight blinked slowed her note taking process when she heard the door to the lecture hall open. Celestia didn’t seem to notice and continued to talk while Cadence and Dash walked into the room. “Hey girls, what’re you doing here?”

“Great, Princess Celestia’s in hardcore lecture mode,” Cadence mumbled. “Looks like this turned out to be a waste.”

Dash frowned. “Hardcore what?”

“It’s some magic theory lesson that she’s got so memorized she can put herself on autopilot to the point where nothing else in the world reaches her,” Cadence explained.

“Wait…she’s like, sleep teaching?” Rainbow Dash asked.

“Yes.”

“Okay, then a good kick should get her-”

“Rainbow Dash!” Twilight shouted as soon as the words left her friend’s mouth. All attempts of taking notes vanished as she turned around to glare at the rainbow-mane alicorn. “You did not just suggest kicking Princess Celestia!”

The accusing tone made the newly ascended goddess flinch, and she gave an innocent chuckle while cowering from the purple unicorn‘s disapproving glare. “Slip of the tongue?”

Cadence rolled her eyes, then sighed. “Well, I guess this is a bust.”

“Hey, we made a bet!” Rainbow exclaimed ass he stood back up to try and match her face to face. But, she was a good deal shorter than the other alicorn. “You can’t just back out now.”

“The whole point of going to the spa was to get you looking presentable for your interview,” Cadence said. “Plus, by the time Celestia is done, it will be time for lunch and your lessons with Twilight.”

In response to Cadence’s comment, Twilight shook her head. “No, I only went over my plans with Rainbow last night. I still need Celestia to approve everything I plan to teach her-oh no, my notes!”

As Twilight whirled around to see where Celestia was in her lecture, Rainbow shook her head at the sight and Cadence frowned at Twilight’s panicked reaction to falling behind her teacher. Although it had been a few years since they’d last seen each other, the Twilight that was descending into a mess over a few missed comments by Celestia seemed a long way from the carefree and loving filly she had used to know. “What the?”

“Yeah…she kind of does this sort of stuff when it comes to tests and Celestia,” Rainbow explained rather poorly.

“Oh my…this is…is there anything we can do?” she asked.

Rainbow Dash frowned for a moment and tapped her chin with her hoof. Then, she looked up as if a light bulb had come on over her head and cleared her throat. “Shoo-be-do.”

Cadence frowned. “What-”

“SEA PONIES!” Celestia shouted out a second after Cadence tried to speak.

All three of the smaller horned ponies in the lecture hall felt their hackles rise as Celestia cried out and leapt into the air. Her horn ignited with a blinding light that Twilight had to shield herself from in order to prevent permanent damage to her eyes while the alicorn’s were able to get away with simply looking away from the sun goddess’s blazing horn.

However, before she could release her power and level half of Canterlot in a blind panic, Celestia noticed where she was and powered down. Then she slowly floated back towards the ground while her mane blew around to hide the blush on her cheeks. “Ah-hem…well…” The goddess shook her head fiercely, then cleared her throat. “Any questions?”

In her later years, Twilight would constantly remind Celestia that she asked for it.

“WHAT THE HAY WAS THAT?” the unicorn demanded as she threw out her hooves in exasperation.

Celestia took a few moments to look around the room, her gaze settling on Rainbow Dash for a moment before she moved her attention back to Twilight. “To what are you referring to my student? The ethical choice of making a living creature for the sole purpose of servitude, or its long-term effects on society at having a labor/fighting force-”

“SHOO-BE-DOO!” Twilight yelled while pointing a hoof at Celestia.

A shiver crept down Celestia’s spine and her body visibly trembled. But, before she could reprimand her student for her use of…that term, a snicker came from higher up the flight of desks, and Rainbow Dash broke out into unbridled laughter, much to Cadence’s confusion and Twilight’s horror.

“Uh, what’s going on?” Cadence asked.

“Rainbow Dash! Stop laughing at Princess Celestia!”

“Can’t…too…much…funny,” the blue alicorn got out between laughs.

The Goddess of the Sun groaned at the sight of her confused niece, her accusing student and…Rainbow Dash laughing her flank off at Celestia’s outburst. Then it’s as Luna said. No one still alive except for her sister should have even been aware of that…musical phrase, and Celestia’s aversion to its creators. But, two oddities and a single night of research were not enough for her to draw any real conclusions on her descendant’s condition.

“Okay seriously, how did you do that?” Cadence asked as she looked at Rainbow rolling around on the ground.

As Rainbow was still too caught up in the hilarity of the slip, Celestia covered for her. “Aurora.”

Twilight and Cadence looked over to the large Alicorn, while Rainbow Dash’s laughter ended and she peeked up from behind the desk. “Hm?”

“Rainbow Dash is a descendent of my daughter,” Celestia explained. “Considering our relationship at the end, I wouldn’t be suppressed if she has a few half-remembered family stories about me, including my aversion to…ugh, sea ponies.”

The explanation seemed to satisfy Cadence and Rainbow Dash, judging by the way the confusion lifted from the mare's face. Twilight just found more questions to ask. “Okay so…what’s a sea pony?”

“Something you never have to worry about my student,” Celestia assured her. She had sealed the last of those creatures away in Tartarus shortly after its construction.

With Twilight taken care of, Celestia turned her attention back to the other alicorns. “Did the two of you need something?”

Cadence nodded. “Yes auntie. I was wondering. You were the one who told me…”


“I can’t believe I’m doing this.”

“Shh! Do you want to get caught?”

Four cloaked figures moved through the back alleys of Canterlot, careful not to draw attention to themselves. Intent on a hidden purpose, they quickly darted in and out behind cover, careful to avoid being seen. Luckily, the few ponies that did notice them were too put off by their dark appearance to investigate.

They hurried up to the rather rundown side of a building and came to a stop at a door that had been boarded up. The lead pony reached up and knocked on the door, then waited for the eye slot to open. “Password?” a gruff voice on the other end asked.

“Hooficure,” the lead pony whispered before she slot closed and she stepped back.

The door opened outwards, taking the boards with it and showing to the two robed ponies that had not been here before the boards were simply for show. Then the herd of four rushed inside before the door slammed shut behind them. Once they had passed through the hidden entrance, a pair of ponies approached the four and waited for them to disrobe.

Twilight went first, using her horn to remove her robes before she helped a struggling Rainbow Dash with hers. Cadence had no problems. As for the fourth member of their group, Twilight was witnessed to the odd sight at being eye level with her teacher for a few moments when the sun goddess shook off her clothes, then she took a moment to adjust her size from that of a normal pony to a divine alicorn.

As soon as the glow faded from Celestia’s body, she stretched much like a dog awakening from a long sleep to readjust its spine. “Ugh, I’ll never understand how Luna’s able to shift her shape so casually,” she grumbled while accidentally treating the other three mares to the sight of her upraised plot while she wiggled a bit to get her spine to pop.

Cadence and Twilight had the decency to look away and not mention it, Rainbow on the other hand…she hummed a little tune to herself for a moment that sounded eerily familiar to the other two ponies before finishing with, “and do a little shake.”

The reactions were immediate. Celestia noticed the awkward position she was in and immediately shot up to look at the ponies behind her. Cadence glared at Rainbow, Twilight sputtered out an apology to Princes Celestia for her friend’s crude behavior, and Rainbow simply guffawed.

“Princess I’m so sorry! Rainbow, apologize!”

When Rainbow Dash opened her mouth, only more chuckling came out. She shook her head and wiped away a tear, only met with the face of Princess Celestia herself when she looked back.

“Rainbow Dash, do you know long it has been since a pony has laughed at my actions before today?” she asked in a cool tone.

All of a sudden, Dash found it easy to quiet down. She became focused in the moment and gulped from looking at the goddess‘s frown. “Ummm…no?” she squeaked.

Then Celestia straitened and shrugged. “Guess that means it’s been a bit too long then,” she said with a smirk before turning around and taking a few steps towards the ponies waiting for her. “And be careful, it’s said those that mock another for their appearance are secretly jealous.” Then, just to emphasis the fact, she shook her rear in Dash’s direction.

“Wha- H-hey!” Dash cried.

Twilight…just…gaped at the sight.

With her three companions silent for the moment, Celestia walked through the door at the other end of the room and came out into one of the Canterlot Spa’s back hallways. She looked to one of the ponies that had taken their robes and nodded a greeting. “My companions and I would like to start with a massage. Princess Rainbow Dash also needs her mane groomed, but I suppose that could wait until after a drip in a therapeutic hot tub.”

“Very well your highness, would you like a single table or massage room for two?”

“Two,” she replied before looking back towards her little ponies. “Come along Twilight. Cadence and Rainbow Dash can share a room as well.”

The smaller unicorn ignored the groan of protest that came from behind and hurried to catch up with her mentor. “So Princess, I was thinking about…”

Twenty minutes later, both of the magical mares were laying on their respective tables as the spa ponies worked on the various kinks in their muscles. Both of them had quite a bit of tension in their system, thanks to Celestia’s transformation and the past two hours of Twilight’s life.

After exhausting all the conversational topics that quickly came to mind, such as Twilight’s plan for Rainbow Dash’s education, thoughts on her family, learning about Cadence’s engagement to Shinning Armor over breakfast this morning (which still had her pretty miffed since it happened the day after Discord’s return and Twilight hadn’t heard a thing about it until today), Twilight finally relaxed enough to ask something that had been bugging her.

“Why Rainbow?”

“Hmm?” Princess Celestia asked before she turned her head towards the purple unicorn. “What’s wrong Twilight?”

Twilight took in a breathe to steel herself. “Why her? She…she’s [Rainbow Dash! She’s loud, and annoying, and a braggart! Just look how she’s been acting since we got in Canterlot! She doesn’t give you proper respect, she barely ever thinks of other ponies feelings and…and… I’m your student! Why her and not…me?” she finally got out with a whine before her face twisted in emotional pain.

The sight of the purple unicorn about to break down and cry made Celestia get off the Massage chair. “Leave us,” she told the other two ponies before walking over to Twilight. “Is there anything else you would like to say?”

Celestia’s kind and sympathetic voice hurt more than her scolding one ever could. Twilight knew she shouldn't have been acing like she was, that she should be happy for her friend; especially after the events of yesterday with Rainbow Dash shocking Twilight out of her depression spiral.

But she just couldn't!

However, Celestia's encouragement did allow Twilight to speak again. “It’s just…I’m the Element of Magic, the strongest element! I’m the leader. I’m the one with the most friendship reports. I’m the one who defeated Nightmare Moon and Discord! I’m…I’m…”

As Twilight finally went silent and let the tears roll down her face, Celestia did her best to collect her thoughts. “And that is where your problem lies.”

“Hmm?” Twilight asked while Celestia stroked the unicorn’s mane.

For a moment, Celestia wondered if she should take the roundabout parable way of teaching Twilight a lesson, but decided on the direct method instead. “You put yourself above others Twilight.”

The unicorn in question looked up at her mentor with a frown. “No I don’t!”

“Oh?” Celestia asked. “Then why was the Element of Magic a crown, while the others wear necklaces?”

Twilight frowned. “What does that have to do with anything?”

“The reshaping of the elements was a subconscious thing,” the alicorn told her. “You may deny it on a conscious level, but your actions say otherwise. In fact your hard-line aversion to boasting may be you are aware of this flaw in your character and your inability to root out your own prideful nature.”

Celestia was also painfully aware that such feelings inside Twilight might have very well been the alicorn’s fault. After her last student’s fall, Celestia had been quite sure to give Twilight several lessons on modesty. The fact of being the best unicorn mage and student of a goddess must have been so conflicting with the constant doses of humble pie Celestia put into her diet.

“You lead, but it is by dictation rather than example. You order and force others into actions rather than lead them onto the right path by your own hoofprints,” she continued. “And what’s all this about magic being the most powerful of Elements? How can the Elements work in harmony if they are unbalanced in importance and power?”

The question threw Twilight for a loop. “But…it…the symbol for Harmony and all the books on the Elements shows magic at the center! And…and it even says so!”

Celestia let out a tiny laugh. “Twilight, does the drawer in the middle of a dresser have any more importance than the one on the top or the bottom? Does the page in the middle of a book always have the most important information? And who told you Magic was the strongest and most important Element? Who wrote all these books? Ancient Unicorns? The ponies who lorded their magic over every other tribe and creature on this planet?”

“It…well…” Twilight stammered. She frowned in thought and tried to remember. She was certain she had heard someone exalt her element as the best. It was… It was…

“Discord!” she finally exclaimed. “Discord told me…”

When Celestia raised an eyebrow, Twilight realized how insanely stupid that sounded and pulled in on herself. “Oh…maybe I shouldn’t trust what the Spirit of Chaos and Disharmony says, huh?”

“I agree, it doesn’t sound like the best of moves,” the goddess said with a smile.

Twilight took in a deep breath, and let out a cleansing sigh. “Princess Celestia…do you think I really put myself above other ponies? I… I try not to be better than anypony else. Or, think I‘m better, I mean.”

“Well, I have no simple answers for you on this Twilight,” Celestia told her. “Being able to achieve more and having more gifts isn’t a bad thing. If everypony were ordinary, then the world would never advance. In fact, being extraordinary may very well be called a burden in the case of you and your friends. You’re expected to put yourself in danger to protect others. You’re held to higher standards, and harsher punishments should you happen to fall.”

Like with Rainbow, Twilight told herself.

No, that’s not fair, she told herself. How many other ponies had bragged about their achievements in town? How many more of her friends had engaged in boasting and showing off and just gotten a roll of the eyes at their antics while Rainbow got… Twilight sighed at the numerous comparisons running through her mind. Note to self, apologize for that again.

“I…I think I understand what you’re saying Princess Celestia,” Twilight said. “But…I still feel pretty jealous.”

Celestia shrugged. “Well that’s normal Twilight,” she said. “But don’t resent your friend for her achievement. Instead…try and match it.” When that got a surprised look from Twilight, Celestia laughed. “What? You think Equestria can only have one new alicorn every couple of decades or something?

She bent down to whisper into the mare's ear. “In a year or two, I think Rainbow might have to give you flying lessons.”

When Twilight finally got down from the high Celestia’s vote of confidence gave her, she got her smile under control and nodded. “Thank you Princess Celestia. I…I know this isn’t the normal way we do things-”

Celestia cut her off. “No, but I’m starting to think it should be,” she said before giving Twilight another affectionate embrace while her mind wandered. Always have I kept my students are forearms length…perhaps that…no, that was my error, and it’s time I started correcting it.


“The bet was whether I had learned the phrase from Celestia, not who said it first.”

“I still say you cheated.”

Cadence rolled her eyes as she moved onto a more important topic. “So, there’s something I wanted to ask you about Twilight,” the alicorn of love said while the spa pony above her worked on her back.

Despite the massage treatment, Dash felt herself stiffen. “Y-Yeah?”

“How often does she…freak out?” Cadence asked after taking a second to choose her words carefully.

Rainbow resisted the urge to laugh. “What, you mean that stuff at the lecture hall? When she started messing with all her notebooks and parchment? You haven’t seen Twilight lose it if you call that freaking out.”

“I saw her in her tower too, remember?” Cadence asked sadly.

This time, Dash was a little more sympathetic. “I think that was more of her confidence problem. She has moments like those too…and likes to try and spread them around,” she grumbled a the end.

“Oh…she was such a happy and carefree filly when she was younger,” Cadence said more to herself than Dash while she shook her head in confusion. “I just don’t know what happened to her.”

Rainbow Dash was silent for a moment as she mulled over whether or not she should explain things to the other alicorn. It wasn’t just Twilight’s stuff that would be put out there, but hers as well. “I…” She let out a sigh. “It’s cause she hit her big achievement so early.”

When Cadence looked over to her with a face that asked for an explanation, Dash gulped down the last of her reluctance. “When I was a kid, I performed a Sonic Rainboom, you know what that is?”

“Former pegasus,” Cadence reminded Rainbow Dash she fully unfurled her wings. “But what’s Twilight have to do with that?”

“I’m getting there,” Dash consoled her. “Right so…I was just a little filly and I did the ultimate aerial stunt for a pegasus. It was awesome, only, when I failed to do it again, and failed again, and again…well, it bucked. It got me in such a bad mood, I just gave up, moved away from Cloudsdale and started over in a middle of nowhere town that didn’t remember what the Sonic Rainboom was.

“Twilight’s the same. Same day I did my Rainboom, she was accepted as Celestia’s pupil. She had to learn all this junk, and take test after test, and unlike me, she actually passed. But, while I just lived with the pressure for a few years before giving up, she kept going. Hay, I even bet every time she passed a test, things only got harder for her. She lived with the pressure so long, freaking out just became…normal for her.”

Cadence shook her head. “Oh my…if only I had stayed in Canterlot, I could have helped her.”

The news that Cadence had apparently abandoned her friend brought out a snarl from Dash. “And what exactly was so important you had to go off and leave Twilight all alone anyway?”

“I never wanted to do that Dash…but when you’re a princess, sometimes you have to choose to do something for the greater good, even if it means causing some pain along the way,” she explained.

A roll of the eyes told Cadence what Dash thought of that idea. “And that greater good was?”

Cadence sighed. “The Griffin Empire needed a new ambassador, and I was sent to fill the role. Talks with them weren’t going well at the time, and my presence showed our nation’s sincerity to work things out.”

“Pfft! What’re they gonna do, invade?” Dash asked rhetorically. “Everypony knows the three tribes are the only things that can live on this continent cause we got to be the ones to work nature. The griffin trade outpost near Fillydelphia has to get us to do everything from growing crops to making rain clouds for them.” Griffins might have been able to sit on clouds and move them, but only pegasi had natural production capabilities. The Empire had to rely on other methods for their weather making.

Knowledge about anything even closely related to foreign affairs coming from Dash of all ponies surprised Cadence; even if it wasn't quite correct. “That’s…how do you know about griffins?”

“Used to know this one called Gilda. She used to be my friend till…well…we went different ways. When we met each other again, things weren’t like I remembered,” Dash admitted. I still don’t know if it was me that changed, or her.

Cadence gave her a sympathetic smile. “Well…I’m sorry to hear that. It’s always hard to loose a friend to distance and time.”

“Yeah well…Twilight’s probably the same as you remember since she’s always had her nose in a book since she was born. She’s just a little more stressed than when she was as a foal,” Dash assured her lazily as she felt the pony kneading her back muscles work out a knot.

Wanting to get onto another topic, Cadence cleared her mind of Twilight for the moment. “So, you’ve performed a Sonic Rainboom and became an alicorn, what’s next for Princess Rainbow Dash?”

Dash rolled her eyes. “Well the princess thing was never really planned so I can’t really count it as some big lifetime achievement. But soon as I’m old enough, I’m going to join the Wonderbolts! Just one more year and I’ll be…what?”

The pink princess looked away from Dash to hide her downcast expression. “It’s…nothing. That’s a nice dream Rainbow Dash, I…that’s a nice dream.”

“Huh. Okay well, I’m done. You ready to head to that overgrown bathtub we saw on the way back here?”


“I can’t believe they put that on the sign above the door,” Rainbow Dash grumbled as she let herself sink lower in the hot tub until her head was barely above the water.

Twilight frowned in confusion. “What sign?”

“The one that says bath room! I expect someone to come in any second to try and uh…use the facilities,” she explained, briefly pausing when she noticed Celestia out of the corner of her eye.

With her friend showing some manner, Twilight found herself a little impressed. “Oh please Dash, no pony is going to make that kind of mistake.”

“Hey, it happened back home when I messed with the letters on your laboratory door,” she explained.

“THAT WAS YOU?” Twilight yelled.

Celestia let out a laugh, and Cadence cocked her head in confusion. “I don’t understand.”

The question made Rainbow Dash grow a guilty smile. “I used a little paint and made the sign spell lavatory instead of laboratory.” When Twilight let out a growl, Rainbow held up her hooves in defense. “Hey, I just thought it’d be funny cause you always keep it locked! I didn’t know someone looking for a book would break the lock and actually…go.”

And this is the new face of our nation's royalty? Twilight thought to herself without any real malice, although she had quite the bit of annoyance. What made it even worse was Celestia was actually laughing from the news.

A few seconds later, when Celestia had apparently had enough merriment, she took a deep breath and shook her head. “Okay. Well, now that I have a moment of your time Rainbow Dash, I need to talk to you about your…duties.”

Out of the corner of her eye, Celestia saw Cadence’s eyes widen before the pink alicorn waved her hooves in front of her neck in a ‘cut’ motion, but she ignored it. “Now, as an alicorn-”

“Say auntie I’ve been meaning to ask you,” Cadence barged in. “Why exactly did you shout sea ponies back at the school?”

“I-”

Twilight tapped her chin. “Actually, I’ve been wandering that myself.”

“That’s not important!” Celestia insisted.

Rainbow Dash laughed as she began. “Oh, you guys gotta hear this. We were flying out over…Horseshoe…wait,” Rainbow Dash’s face twisted in confusion as she blinked several times while looking at Celestia. “Why would you…we never…what?”

The three other mares in the tub shared a look of concern as Rainbow’s speech became less and less coherent. Twilight watched her friend bob back and fourth in the hot tub before she fell forward and became emerged in the water completely as Twilight cried out for her friend.

“RAINBOW!”

Author's Note:

Far from my best work but here it is people

Enjoy!