• Published 7th Jun 2014
  • 2,502 Views, 183 Comments

I Want To Take You Flyin' - MintyJoy



After Rainbow Dash moves to Ponyville, Applejack and Dash slowly become friends. But as their friendship grows, Dash realizes some different feelings about her friend. One stormy night, Dash tries to explain those feelings to Applejack.

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Scapegoat

Chapter 6

Scapegoat

Rainbow slammed the door on her home as she marched inside. After huffily landing on the couch, she began to stare at the ceiling. What was she going to do? She had failed the Sonic Rainboom a thousand times now, how was she going to win this competition? She gritted her teeth as she rubbed her chin, still a little sore from her recent crash into the library. There was so much to worry about, and that trick needed more work than there was time for. And then there was also Applejack.

“Goll-ee. I’d love to see you strut your stuff in that competition.”

Ever since the Running of the Leaves, Dash had been having troubles being around AJ. It seemed to be those eyes. If she looked too close, she’d fall in. But they were just friends, obviously. There was no way she liked Applejack. At least, that's what she thought. The whole thing was very confusing. And AJ herself wasn’t making it any easier.

She cursed at the ceiling as she thought of how eager the farm pony was to see her perform. It really wasn’t fair at all. She wanted her to come so badly, but she knew it wasn’t going to happen.

“Ah’m sorry, Rainbow. Ah’m just not meant for the sky.”

Frustration filled her veins. In more than one way. Why did AJ have to limit herself like that? Why did she kick herself in the ego over and over? That pony was far from prideful. The sad face of her friend kept appearing in her mind, disappointed and upset. Dash couldn't stand it. And the fact that AJ could upset her with that face made her angrier. She threw a pillow across the room.

“STOP IT!!”

Suddenly, the phone rang.

The phone was a new addition to the home. Only one pony had its number. The pony who installed it. The pony who told her to use it often. The pony that told her to be careful, and responsible, even if he wasn’t always.

Dad.

Dash fell of the couch and scrambled for the phone before it was too late. She stood, cradling the phone to her ear and rolling her eyes.

“Hi, Dad.”

“Hey Dash! Judt checkin’ in.”

“I know.” She smirked. He’d been calling for the last month since he left to claim his job back at the weather factory. She didn’t want to leave her friends, and she claimed she was old enough to live on her own. He knew she was. He just wasn’t. He ended up leaving her the house and his job as a weather pony since she had been taught how to clear the sky since she was young, but he also left the phone as a sign they were not truly separating. She giggled as she thought how dependent he was.

“The Best Young Flyers Competition id today, right?” The voice sounded stuffy, and there was a sniffle heard from the other line.

Dash frowned. “Yeah, it is. You okay, Dad?”

“Yeah, I’m judt fine! I’ll be there, don’t worry!” The sound of somepony with a tissue.

“Dad.” Rainbow’s voice was stern. “You’re sick, aren’t you?”

“No I’m not! I am not going to midd today for anyting!” Loud coughs followed.

“You are sick, Dad! You need to stay in bed!” Dash’s face got red with disappointment and frustration.

“No!!” He sounded like a stuffy toddler.

“Dad, if you try to come today I will personally take you back to bed, and miss the competition!”

Silence for a moment.

“Fine. I have the feather flu.”

“That’s a good Dad.” Rainbow smirked fondly at the phone. “Don’t worry, I’ll do fine at the competition.”

“How will I know?” The voice sounded just as disappointed as she was.

“You’ll know when you see it out your window.”

Dash felt this was a little bit of a lie, since she still couldn’t pull off a Sonic Rainboom, but she had to find a way to calm Dad down.

“Okay, I’ll be watching.”

“From your bed?” Dash asked suspiciously.

“From my bed.” Dad agreed.

After a little more chatting and then their exchange of ‘I love you’s, Dash put the phone down with a sigh. Not even her dad was gonna make it. Her only family. All she had was Fluttershy. She walked upstairs and curled up on her bed even though it was covered with Cheetos. She wasn’t going to sleep. She was going to not-cry for a few minutes, that’s all.

“Wait. You went into the competition knowing NO FAMILY was going to be there to support you?”

“Yup. It was going to be a rough day. But then you guys did actually show up, which helped a little.”

“Ah’m glad we did too. You needed it.”

“Although, having you there was a teeny problem.”

Dash peeked outside the performance curtain, her eyes immediately going to the platform her friends were on. She smirked as she looked at each one of them. Twilight was sitting patiently for the contest to start. Fluttershy was also quietly sitting there, smiling at Pinkie Pie who had some weird foam… thing in the air that had a #1 on it. And then Applejack. Applejack was closest to Rainbow, facing away with her eyes on the weird foam shape that her friend was holding.

The strange tingling feeling was back.

Dash dove back through the curtain, terrified by it.

After frightfully swapping a few contestant numbers, Dash finally started pacing the room. She had to sit down, or she'd waste all her energy, so she tentatively sat. First it was a normal sit. Then a crouch-sit. Then a tightly curled, shaking, nervous wreck of a ball. Thoughts of her being catapulted through the skies and out of the stadium, breaking her body on her father’s window came flooding into her mind. She was about to disappoint her dad, her friends, her heroes, her princess, and her-”

Rainbow stopped for a moment.

No.

No-no-no-no-no-no. No way.

Applejack was many things, but she was not THAT.

The idea of it made her quiver harder. What was wrong with her? Was all she knew to be true just a mumbled mess of goo? Was she really that spineless, that stupid to even think that? She really was a nervous wreck! Were her lines of direction really so erased by her day dreams? She looked around the room.

The whole place was a giant blur, her vision out of focus from her nervous breakdown.

This was it. This was the lowest point in her life. If it got any worse, she would surely combust into flame, or explode, or melt like a witch swimming in a pool.

“Number 15! Let’s go!”

The quirky voice came from above her as she felt someone prod her with her hoof.

Well, it definitely got worse.

She watched all her life swim before her as she continued to vibrate and jitter. It was a miracle that the fully beautified Rarity could even get her to stand. Oh wait, she didn’t. It was the backstage pony.


Rainbow Blaze sat back against the headboard of his bed, a box of tissues on his lap. The doctor has come in to see him a few times, but he had refused to go to the hospital. He had a window to watch.

The room had gotten super stuffy since that morning, and now he could feel the beads of sweat on his forehead and under his mane. It was uncomfortable to be sick, but it was even more uncomfortable being hot, sweaty and sick.

Disobeying the doctors orders, he got out of bed and walked towards the window. His head swam as he had stood up to quickly, and he caught the bed post to keep from falling. After he had regained composure, he went and pushed open the window and stepped onto the balcony.

The fresh air felt amazing even as Blaze shivered from his fever. It cooled off behind his ears and he ran his hooves under his mane as to expose under that as well. After this, he placed both hooves on the banister.

Good thing he did, too.

An explosion shook the whole house and sent a shockwave of wind rushing straight at Rainbow Blaze. He gripped on for his life as the gust blew at his robe and tugged on his mane. Finally it was over, and he looked up.

A beautiful rainbow decorated the sky with a shine so bright it almost required sunglasses. The sight could have brought tears to any eye. But this was especially a sweet moment for this father.

Blaze leaned on the banister with the fondest of smiles on his face, pride filling him to the rim. He knew exactly what had happened, and he couldn't be happier than in this moment, as sick as he was. Quietly he whispered sacredly as the rainbow began to fade:

"Good girl."


“And so ya did it.”

“What?”

“You did the sonic rainboom, even though you were a mess.”

“Well, yeah, because my friend’s life was on the line. But I didn’t fully realize that until three days later, in your orchard.”

It had been a few days since the competition, but the events that had occurred there were still fresh in everypony’s minds. Not because they wanted to remember it, but because Rainbow Dash hadn’t stopped talking about it. Twilight kicked her out of the library, Pinkie just talked over her, Fluttershy listened anyway, Rarity was too embarrassed to listen, Scootaloo and her friends had heard the story countless times, and Applejack’s patience was growing very thin.

Very. Thin.

Rainbow was in the orchard again while Applejack harvested apples and such, teeth grinding as the pegasus yapped on about ‘then Rarity this’ and ‘then the Wonderbolts that’. Finally, before Applejack swung at her, she snapped.

“Rainbow!”

Dash jumped back in surprise.

“What??”

“You really think Ah want to hear that darn story again?”

Rainbow tilted her head, slightly hurt.

“Why not?”

Applejack sighed. How was she going to knock this through that ego?

“Give me one good reason why it should be told so many times.”

Rainbow fell silent for a few moments, tapping her chin with her hoof. Applejack almost sighed in relief at the silence, finding the problem solved. But, to her dismay, Rainbow spoke.

“Well, I guess it's because I'm so excited.”

“Yes,” Applejack’s ears drooped. “But shouldn’t have that rubbed off by now, sugar cube?”

Dash paused again. “I guess you’re right. It’s not excitement anymore.”

AJ waited for the unwanted reply as she grumbled, “Then what is it?”

“Surprise.”

Applejack suddenly jerked upward, looking Dash straight in the eye.

“Surprise?! What are you surprised by? Are ya surprised ya saved Rarity?!”

“Well, yeah.” AJ gawked in dismay, as Dash continued. “I guess I’m surprised that my first reaction was to rescue her with so much force I did a nearly impossible trick. Even after all she did that day.”

“Well, of course!” Applejack was so taken aback she threw her hat.

Rainbow marveled, never seeing her friend so upset.

“Yer the element of loyalty, for cryin’ out loud! You forgave her, risked yer own life, and punctured the stinkin’ sound barrier in a split second just to save yer friend because she was in DANGER. And Ah am pretty sure a good friend told me you ‘never leave mah friends hangin’’!”

Applejack’s face glowered, her cheeks were flushed and her green eyes pierced Dash with her stare.

“I-I um, guess you’re right. I will do anything for my friends.” Although she was slightly distracted by AJ not wearing her hat, she realized her friend was right.

AJ picked up her hat and solved the problem.

“That’s right. You would. You react differently than anypony else, because you care deeply for each of yer friends. Enough to dive straight towards the ground at unimaginable speed. Because,” she shot Dash a smirk, “Ya are just that awesome.”

Dash chewed on that for a moment. She thought about her actions. And then her feelings towards her friends. Towards Applejack. A smile began to creep onto her face, an epiphany dawning on her.

And then it clicked. Her scapegoat.

Dash swooped down to AJ and wrapped her in a big hug, excitement filling her completely.

“YES! That’s it! It makes perfect sense!!”

She did a looptiloop and then began flying away, a laugh between a battle cry and a victory shout escaping her lips.

“Thanks Applejack!!”

The earth pony put on a very confused look, as she watched the pegasus fly away.

“Erm… yer welcome?”

This was it! This explained everything. Dash felt the way she did because she was LOYAL. It was just her loyalty to her friend. That made sense, right? It did for Dash. She soared through the sky with a giggle.

Ahhhh.

It wasn’t a crush.

It wasn’t love.

She was safe.

With another a giggle, she shot off towards home, riding on all her relief.

“Wow.” Applejack looked up.

“Yeah, it was stupid, but I would believe anything to admit it wasn’t true.”

“Ya never would fall with a fight.” The farm pony smiled fondly.

“Yeah, a fight I would soon learn I was losing.” Dash frowned.

An awkward silence followed.

“But that left me satisfied for a while. Until a certain change of scenery.”

“Are you implying…”

“Aaaaploosa!!”

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