• Published 25th Apr 2012
  • 9,426 Views, 266 Comments

Harmonic Spectrum - Lux Klonoa



The Elements of Harmony... What happens when one single pony uses all of them at once?

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3. Kindness, Generosity, and Laughter

Darkness. Pure, total darkness. Nothing but an empty black void around her. It was as black as black could possibly be. It was all there was and all there ever could be, going far into the seemingly endless distance, both ahead and in her surroundings.

Yet, she stood there on all fours, motionless and still as a statue, with her eyes closed and without a semblance of wind moving her rainbow mane and tail.

Soon enough, Dash slowly lifted her eyes open.

...Huh? What...?

And only after she opened them did she find herself in this great endless void of surrounding darkness where nothing could be seen.

What in the world...? Dash began to look at her surroundings, widening her eyes a bit and finding nothing else besides her own being. Where... where am I? It, it's totally pitch black in here! Yet, I could still see myself in here...

So she noticed, seeing her front blue hooves standing on the seemingly invisible floor that was filled with the same darkness. She lifted one hoof up and put it back down a few times, tapping the floor. As she felt, there was something solid there that she couldn't see.

Weird. I'm standing here on solid ground, yet it looks like there's nothing that I'm standing on. Nothing but darkness here...

Confused, the blue pegasus looked around again.

...and darkness everywhere as well.

She turned around and began to search for anything and anyone that was visible to her rose-colored eyes.

“Hello? Anyone in here with me?” she called, turning and facing in different directions. “Anyone? Anypony? Helloooo...?”

She waited, hoping for an answer from someone and hoping to shed some answers about this place. But all she heard was nothing but complete and utter silence. It was as quiet as it could possibly be, and not even the constant breeze of air and wind was present. It felt like everything had gone deaf in here.

“...Hello...?”

Again, nothing but silence. Her calls for answers were for naught.

As she continued to look around, Dash's eyes began to tremble and her face was slowly being filled with the emotion of fear, her mouth opening a bit as she took a hoof back. With utter silence and the void of darkness, the notion of being alone in this dark place was entering her head.

“...Okay... This is creeping me out a bit. Just where in the hay am I? Helloooo...?!”

The pegasus' constant moving and turning was increasing at a frantic pace, with her face looking more fearful by the second. Soon, she began to walk around. A few seconds later, her walk began to turn into a run. She ran and ran, going into a different direction with every second as she tried to search for an exit out of here.

Where am I, really?! Is there no exit out of here? I couldn't be stuck in here forever, could I?

With every second that passed and with no exit in plain sight, Dash's heart was beating at a rapid pace, her lungs rapidly breathing in and out. Her eyes were wide open and her pupils had shrunk to a great degree. Fear had completely taken over her now, and there was no sign of her calming down, so as long as she saw was complete darkness everywhere.

No! I, I can't be alone in here! I just can't! There's no possible way!

Dash, with her most fearful expression, continued to stampede around the dark void in a rapidly frantic pace, breathing as hard as she could as her very being was completely consumed by fear. She was all alone in here, as much as her mind didn't want to accept it.

Yet, suddenly, something had stopped her.

“Oof!”

At that abrupt moment, like a ball that was thrown at a solid wall from a high speed, the pegasus was swiftly knocked back by a sudden unknown object, rolling back a bit and stopping with her front side and face on the ground.

She groaned a bit, with her eyes shut tight and her teeth clenched, having pain in her head where the unknown force had hit the most.

Ow...! What, what just hit me...?! She thought, touching her head with her hoof and trying to mend the pain. Or, did I just crash into something? That was sudden.

Shaking her head, Dash opened her eyes to look ahead, still mending the pain with her hoof.

Huh?

As her eyes regained focus, the pegasus saw what had stopped her frantic running. Something that suddenly appeared out of nowhere in this dark void that was thought to be empty.

What? A mirror...?

So it was. A lone gold-plated mirror, sitting silently on a small brown stand in the middle of this darkness, several feet away from her where she couldn't see her reflection.

Dash steadily stood back up on all fours from the invisible ground, looking ahead at the mirror. From this distance, it appeared to be about the same size as her.

Where did this come from? I thought there wasn't anything in this dark place.

Staring at it for a few seconds, she then proceeded to walk over to it, glancing all around her again with a frown of fear on her face.

...This place is getting creepier by the second. Seriously, where did this come from? I was running around trying to find an exit out of here, and this hits me from out of nowhere? Very weird.

As Dash walked over to the mirror, however, the fear in her mind and heart, head and chest, was slowly fading away, making her notice.

...Huh? What's going on...? Why, why am I no longer feeling afraid of this place? Dash thought, stopping. Huh?

The fear faded from her, much to her confusion. Now, strangely, the sense of peace had entered her mind and heart, making her calm as well, as if she was lying down on a chair at a sunny beach. Then, something, from somewhere she couldn't physically perceive, was telling her to walk to the mirror. A presence, it felt like.

Walk to the mirror...?

She looked at the mirror once more, and the mysterious, disembodied presence then urged her to go to it. It was an urge that, somehow, she could not question nor ignore this time.

...Hmm...

Dash proceeded on. Weird, she thought once again. How could she go from being afraid to suddenly feeling peaceful and calm like this? And who or what exactly was telling her to go to the mirror?

She pressed on. Slowly but unexpectedly, like a balloon that was slowly being inflated, the sense of peace and calmness grew within her each time she took a step towards the mirror, making her notice and confusing her even more. Soon, to her further surprise, she suddenly felt herself changing as well. Not just inside of her, but physically as well.

Walking further and further along, these calm peaceful feelings within her continued to grow, advancing to a point where it began to overwhelm her. Yet, she continued on, thanks to the urge instilled in her by the formless presence. Then, she felt that these same growing feelings were actually trying to bring out something within her. Something very deep, and as she neared the mirror now, the feeling of being changed in and out had rapidly grown. Both of her mane and tail, she felt, were shapeshifting themselves, becoming wilder as she walked closer. Her coat felt like lightning was shocking and jolting through it.

Last but not least, the pegasus had the sense of her entire body getting stronger by the second, with her hooves receiving this newfound strength the most, feeling like she could punch through a massive wall with them.

Yet, despite all this, despite her mouth being a bit open and her eyes being a bit wide in response to these sudden things taking place inside of her and out, Dash reached the gold-plated mirror and saw her appearance in it.

Whoa...!

To her great surprise, gasping a bit in front of it, Rainbow Dash was no longer the blue pegasus she once was. She was a white one. Her rainbow mane and tail weren't the same as well. They became great flames of rainbow flaring off from her head and her behind, with colored embers flying away from them. Her eyes were no longer rose-colored, but a ruby shade of red, instead. As she noticed last, a familiar golden necklace with a red, jeweled, lightning bolt-shaped emblem on it had been placed on her neck.

Her folded pegasus wings then felt the need to unfold themselves, shaking and jolting a bit like water trying to burst out of its container and trying to be free of its confines. She heeded this urge and unfolded them, blooming out like a flower. Surprising her further, gasping again, her unfolded white wings were no longer the small ones they were before. They were larger in size and in the number of feathers that had increased. To her, they now resembled the wings of the two ruling Princesses in Equestria, looking almost angelic as theirs.

Staring at herself like this with the pure white coat, ruby red eyes, rainbow flames, large wings, and the apparent Element of Loyalty on her neck, the many feelings that overwhelmed her before were at their maximum. Yet, somehow, she stood here, no longer affected by them. This huge peace and calmness was something she had never felt in her life before, and the sheer strength she had inside of her now was something she never had as well. Furthermore, she soon knew and recognized what was trying to get out before from the depths of her very being.

It was her very own soul, and she was looking at it right now in the mirror. Her soul that was on display.

My... soul...? But, I, I don't understand. Why do I look like this right now? And what's with all these strong feelings inside of me? ...I really don't understand! Why does my mane and tail look like they're on fire?!

The pegasus continued to stare at herself in the mirror, albeit confused now. Her head was now filled with several questions about this new appearance of hers, as if wondering why she was in this dark place wasn't enough for her. Indeed, why did she look like this right now? Why did she feel that her body had gone through some extremely rigorous training to the point where she could destroy a building completely with just one hoof, not to mention being filled with a steady stream of strong, yet calm feelings within her? And why was the Element of Loyalty on her that appeared from out of nowhere?

The stream of feelings within her also felt rather familiar to her. But what was it exactly? Dash couldn't recall. She couldn't put a hoof on it.

Staring at herself still, Dash lifted up one of her front hooves and gazed down at it. It was white, just as the mirror had shown, surprising her even further. Putting it down, she then looked all over herself: down at her chest, her back, and at her sides and wings. Seeing one of her cutie marks, she noticed that it looked a bit different. The cloud part of it, where it had been white before, was now a storm grey color.

Dash was what she looked like in the mirror. She had, indeed, completely transformed. Why she had transformed into this, however, was a mystery to her.

...Hmm, very, very weird... Why am I totally different than before? …Huh?!

Suddenly, as she quickly noticed, the dark void she stood in was abruptly filled with a dark shade of red.

Whoa, what the hay?! ...Huh?!

As she soon saw, what appeared to be a large number of black shadowy blots began to ooze into the now-red void. They were surrounding her from a distance, seemingly oozing in from the ground and levitating themselves above it, rotating in the counterclockwise direction. After a second, the blots then began to shapeshift themselves into something, expanding and contracting at a steady rate, until they began to resemble something that Dash recognized.

...What? Is this, is this Ponyville?! And is that... Canterlot?!

So it seemed, though something was quickly off to her as she saw. Moving around and viewing them, what now surrounded her were black shadow silhouettes of the buildings that graced Ponyville, appearing to be in great disrepair and ruins. Parts of them had fallen off, with their still-standing doors being full of holes in them. Debris was everywhere, scattered near and far from the buildings. The once-tall town hall tower had broken in two, with the other half having fallen into a group of buildings nearby, creating even more debris.

What caught her attention the most, though, was the seemingly floating island of rock in the distance past the mirror, and on that rock was Canterlot, having been pulled from its mountainside rest and placed on the rock for an unknown reason. Despite being placed on a rock now and unlike Ponyville, the majority of the palace and city was still largely intact.

Before Dash could even figure out what was going on here, suddenly, a very loud string of laughter was heard all around, rocking the area a bit and reaching all the way down to the very depths of her pony ears.

It was a string of laughter that she recognized in an instant. She quickly turned around to face its source, and what she found had shocked her, making her gasp loudly with her red eyes wide open. What largely loomed over her was a black silhouette of a dragon-like being, with its limbs resembling the limbs of many animals. The silhouette sported a wicked smiling expression on its face, smiling directly at her.

Discord!

---

“AAAH!!”

The pegasus jolted up from her bed, screaming a bit with her eyes wide open. With her body having been shaken up by fear, she frantically looked at her surroundings, quickly noticing that she was back in her bedroom.

Realizing this, Dash looked down at her hooves and upper body, seeing that they were back to blue. She lifted her right hoof and then swept it through her rainbow mane, feeling that it was back to its usual flowing style as well. The many feelings that overwhelmed her just mere seconds ago were gone from her, all except the strong, yet lingering feeling of fear that remained.

She put her head down, breathing a bit heavily and putting her hooves down as well. After a few breathers, the pegasus let out a huge sigh of relief from her, closing her eyes and calming herself down. She realized that it was just a nightmare after all.

“A nightmare... Wow,” Dash said, calmly.

After calming down, Dash wiped her eyes with the upper part of her hoof. She then opened her eyes and sighed again, looking at the open window to her left. She saw that it was morning, with the bright golden rays of the sun radiating inward and illuminating her room in golden light.

Letting out another sigh, the pegasus proceeded to get off of her bed, kicking the blanket off and standing near the right side of the bed on all fours. Walking off with a still-tired look on her face, she proceeded to start the day off.

---

A few hours had passed, and the sun was now set in the middle of the blue sky.
High above the town of Ponyville, the blue rainbow-maned pegasus was now lying her entire backside on a lone cloud that floated slowly along, with a sad, yet blank look on her face, her half-closed rose eyes staring into the sky above. Since she was the leader of Ponyville's weather team and ultimately its weather caretaker, she didn't need to do anything today, much less a few days from today anyway, as the town's crops and plants needed some sun for a while. As she preferred, these next few days were her lazy days, doing nothing but sleep on a cloud all day. That, and spend some time with her friends as well.

Indeed, she would be happy about it now, if it wasn't for something that happened last night.

“Maaaan... Why do I have to be the Element of Loyalty?” moaned Dash, calmly, sighing. “Talk about having your dreams get crushed like that.”

Even though she proudly accepted it, Dash couldn't get over the choice that she made last night in front of the Wonderbolts’ captain, Spitfire. For years and years since being a little filly, she always wanted to join the famous acrobatic group, and yet, to risk leaving the world in danger in pursuit of achieving that dream... In the end, as much as it crushed her dream, she knew she had to back out of it. She knew she had to stay loyal to her friends, as well as Equestria itself.

Dash sat up on the cloud, looking over the town below.

“It looks like I'm gonna be stuck here forever, then, taking care of the weather and staying with my friends... What other choice is there, really?”

Staring at the town for a bit, she then proceeded to stand up on all fours and sighed again.

“Ugh. Look at me sulking off. Imagine if somepony sees me like this when I'm usually not sulky most of the time. I better get over this, then.”

Unfolding her wings, Dash took a look around the town with her sad frown disappearing.

“I oughta find something to do to help me get over it. Hmm... I wonder how Applejack's doing in the hospital? I better check up on her.”

Facing the direction of the hospital, she jumped off the cloud and began to fly over to it, flapping her wings and then gliding down towards it.

Right in the middle of her glide, though, she saw something in the lower corner of her right eye, making her look while still gliding.

Down in the town streets of Ponyville, something speedily zoomed past the walking ponies, causing some of them to move out of the way. As Dash noticed, it was a scooter that rolled past them at a fast speed, and riding on top of it was a small, orange, pegasus filly with a pinkish-purple mane and tail. The filly wore a blue helmet with white racing stripes on top of her head, and she was constantly fluttering her small wings to keep the speed going on her scooter.

“Huh? Scootaloo?” Dash noticed, stopping her glide and facing the direction that the filly was going.

As she was heading towards two colt ponies carrying a large couch near the top of their heads with their upper hooves and standing in bi-pedal positions, nearing it with a focused expression on her face, Scootaloo quickly jumped off of the scooter before she hit the couch, leaping over it with her wings still fluttering. The scooter went under the couch, and the filly landed back on it as it exited, continuing to propel it with her wings.

Without a single break in her concentration, the filly headed towards more of the pony pedestrians walking ahead and swiftly swerved left and right to dodge them. Coming towards the fifth pedestrian, she made a small jump with the scooter, swerving right again and performing a 360-degree spin at the same time, landing after the spin and continuing the ride.

“Wow, kid sure has some nice moves there,” Dash said, impressed by what she witnessed, grinning a bit as well.

With nothing but an empty street ahead of her now, Scootaloo looked around while continuing to flutter her wings. Then, in the corner of her eye, she spotted a familiar-looking, rainbow-maned, blue pegasus floating above the buildings.

“R-Rainbow Dash!” yelped the filly with surprise, with a wide-eyed happy look on her face as well. “Oh my gosh, she's watching me!”

Seeing Dash up there who was watching her scooter ride, the filly couldn't help but feel excited and ecstatic to the point where she was looking directly at her instead of the road ahead. She had always looked up to the blue pegasus for a long time now, idolizing and admiring everything about her and her awesome abilities that she had. She wanted to be like her in every way, but most importantly, she wanted and wished for Dash to become her big sister.

That alone was why she was on this daring trip through Ponyville on her scooter: to get Dash’s attention and to impress her. She wanted to show how awesome she was as well, which quickly reminded her.

“Oh, man, I better focus!” Scootaloo exclaimed, snapping out of it, still looking left. “I better pay attent—”

“LOOK OUUUUT!” Dash suddenly screamed to her, spotting something in the filly's way.

“Huh?!” Scootaloo looked. What she saw ahead caused her to gasp in shock, her pupils quickly shrinking. A large black piano being carried by another pair of colts was heading straight ahead for her, catching her off-guard.

A series of loud crashing and off-note piano sounds was then heard, catching the attention of everypony nearby. Dash herself almost witnessed the crash, forcing her eyes shut with one hoof. A second later, she opened them and moved her hoof away. What she saw and heard next had shocked her, making her gasp.

“Scootaloo!”

Dash quickly flew off towards the crash site, where the sound of loud wailing cries was heard, further catching the attention of all the ponies in the area.

---

“Gosh. It sure takes some waitin' to do before you're up and runnin' again.”

Applejack sighed, staring at the ceiling above while lying down on the medical bed in one of the many rooms in the Ponyville Hospital. It had only been a day since she was rescued from the burning and crumbling barn, and as much as she wanted to be her apple-bucking self again, she still, indeed, needed to recover from the many burns that were inflicted on her coat.

A few seconds had passed. Suddenly, she heard the hospital's entrance doors hit against their surrounding walls loudly, making her jump a bit. A group of loud, chattering, alarmed voices was then heard, along with what sounded like a hoof stampede and somepony wailing on a high note, the tone of it sounding rather distressed and painful. Applejack recognized the wailing cry and knew who it belonged to.

“Scootaloo?” She lifted her head up to look at the open doorway ahead.

The stampede and the wailing cry became louder and louder, and soon, she saw them. Like a train speeding through the railroad, a group of medical personnel ponies ran past, moving a stretcher carrying the crying Scootaloo along. Rainbow Dash followed them shortly after, flying in the air as she followed.

“What in tarnation...? What in the hay happened to her?” Applejack wondered aloud, surprised by what she saw.

In the hallway, Dash continued to follow them in the air, distraught by the filly's constant wailing. A two-door entrance was fast approaching them, with a sign above it that said, “I.C.U.” Seeing this, she knew she had to stop here, as only patients were allowed.

“Stay tough in there, kid! You're going to be alright!” she exclaimed, slowing down her flight. “I know it!”

Dash came to a complete halt in the air, watching as the injured filly and the staff plow through the doorway, with the doors closing in behind them.

“At least, I hope so...” The pegasus stared at the doorway with a worried look on her face. Knowing that there wasn't anything else she could do for now, she turned around and began to slowly fly back in the hallway.

Soon, she came towards an open doorway leading into a hospital room, spotting Applejack on the bed.

“Oh, hey, Applejack,” Dash greeted, entering the room and landing in front of the bed, sheathing her wings.

“Rainbow Dash,” greeted the orange pony. “What was that ruckus just now? Is Scootaloo hurt?”

“Yeah, really bad. Her hoof ankle's been snapped. She was riding around in Ponyville on her scooter, doing stunts and dodging ponies, when she saw me in the air above. I tried to warn her of the ponies carrying a piano that was coming her way, but it was too late.”

“Huh, so that's what happened... Ouch, poor filly.”

“Yeah,” nodded Dash, still with a worried look on her face.

“Well, talk about bein’ reckless, then. No doubt that the little filly's tryin’ to be like you, Rainbow,” Applejack said. “The way she looks up to you and whatnot.”

“...Yeah, I've kinda noticed for a while now,” said the pegasus, rubbing the back of her head with her hoof and looking away, smiling afterward. “I mean, she did put up and manage that big fan club about me a while back. It was quite awesome of her to do that.”

Putting her hoof down, she looked over to the window to her left.

“I think I oughta pay her back for doing that, really. Well, when she's been fixed up, of course. Hmm.”

“I think you really oughta, Rainbow.” Applejack smiled.

“Eh, we'll see. I hope she'll be fixed up, though...” Dash frowned with the worried look again.

“She will. Don't worry, sugarcube,” said the orange pony. “After all, your wing got broken once and you've recovered from that, didn't you?”

The blue pegasus nodded, looking at her. “Yeah, I did... Anyway, how goes your hospital stay, Applejack? Feeling better at least?”

“Yeah, a little,” replied Applejack, looking down at her own body. “But as much as I don't like it, it's gonna take a while for the hurtin' to stop. 'Bout a week, the doctor says. Honestly, I can't wait to get back to my farming work and buckin' them apples out of them trees, since the others are still out on vacation and all. But 'till then, I'm stuck in this gosh-darned hospital room.”

The pegasus chuckled, grinning a bit. “Well, guess you now know how I felt when I was in here last time.”

“I guess.” Applejack chuckled, looking at the pegasus.

Just then, Dash was reminded of something. “Oh yeah. By the way, uh, about the Changelings that trapped you yesterday...”

“Yeah? What about 'em?”

“Well, it turns out that those bug freaks are out there planning something. I don't know what exactly, but it definitely isn't good,” Dash said, looking concerned, turning and facing to her right with her eyes downcast. “All I know is that they're stealing love from ponies again.”

“...What?!” The orange pony looked a bit surprised and alarmed. “But I thought Twilight said they didn't have that ability anymore?”

“They still do, apparently.”

“Gosh.” Applejack blinked her eyes a few times. “How do you know this, Rainbow? Did Twilight tell you? If she didn't, you've gotta tell her right away!”

“Already did this morning, A.J., and by now, she's likely informed Princess Celestia already. As for how I know, well, it's a bit of a long story to tell.”

The blue pegasus turned and walked over to Applejack's left, stopping there and sitting down, facing her.

“So, yesterday, I received a letter from the Wonderbolts saying...”

---

After telling Applejack what happened last night at the Manehattan stadium and receiving applause from the orange pony for being truthful and honest to herself, Dash left the hospital with the intent of coming back later to check up on the filly who idolized her.

A few hours had passed. The sun had done its usual rounds in the sky above, descending from it in order to pave the way for the shining bright moon and the darkness of the night that it had brought along. Ponyville was now illuminated in the night sky's shade of midnight blue and the white light of the moon that sat above it.

Inside one of the lit rooms of Ponyville Hospital was the orange filly, Scootaloo, lying on the bed next to the window to her right and wearing one of the hospital's patient gowns. Her mane had been ruffled a bit, thanks to the earlier crash, and her lower right hoof had been encased in a white cast that immobilized it. Various bruises were seen on her, almost blackening her coat, and a bandage had been placed on the right side of her forehead.

The filly lay there, staring at the ceiling above with a bit of a sad look on her face.

“Man... I really should have paid attention earlier. If only I was watching where I was going, then... then Rainbow Dash wouldn't have seen me crash like that.” The filly sighed. “Now I got her worried about me.”

Causing Dash to worry and be distressed about her was the last thing Scootaloo wanted. It was also a complete embarrassment for her, crashing into something that she could've easily dodged with her skill and without getting distracted.

“I oughta say sorry to her for making her worry like that, and... I think I oughta tell the truth to her as well,” she said, her eyes downcast. “Hm...”

Just then, she heard somepony speaking outside the door of the hospital room. A voice that she instantly recognized, causing her to glance at the door.

“So how's she doing, doctor? Is she going to be alright after what happened?”

“Well, in addition to a few bruises here and there,” replied the doctor, speaking by the door. “Luckily, she's only sustained a fracture in her right hoof ankle as you saw. Nowhere else as far as I'm aware. So, she's going to be fine as long as she stays in here for a few days, just as you stayed in here a few weeks ago when you were injured.”

“Right.”

“By the way, Rainbow Dash, I still can't believe you snuck into the hospital like that, all just for a book. You should've just asked the receptionist at the desk instead of doing that.”

“Uh, heh heh,” Dash nervously chuckled. “Yeah, sorry about that. Let's just say that I wanted to keep a secret.”

“Hm, right. Well...”

With his hoof, the doctor opened the door to the filly's room, looking at her in the bed.

“Here she is, then. Let me know if there's anything you need, by the way.”

“Alright. Thanks, doc.”

The blue pegasus proceeded to walk in while the doctor went down the hallway.

“Heya, kid,” Dash greeted, smiling and walking over to her. “Feeling better after that bit of an accident?”

“A little,” Scootaloo replied. “I mean, it still kinda hurts, but not as much as before. I can barely move my hoof with this thing on.”

“Well, that's because it keeps it together, so that it fixes itself up faster,” said the blue pegasus, stopping to the filly's left and facing her. “Otherwise, if that thing isn't on, it'll heal up really slow, and you'll be stuck in here for weeks, instead.”

“I know.” Scootaloo sighed sadly, looking down at her cast.

Dash proceeded to sit on the floor, still smiling at her. “Hey, you'll be outta here, up and running, in no time, kid. Trust me, I had to go through the same thing as you a few weeks ago, staying in here 'till my wing fixed itself up. It was certainly a boring couple of days back then, that's for sure. Well, at first, anyway.”

“...It's not that, Rainbow Dash. It's...”

“What?” Dash asked, her smile fading away.

The filly opened her mouth to say something, but not a single word came out of it. She closed it and sighed sadly, looking away from the blue pony that she looked up to. Scootaloo was hesitating to make an apology to her and to tell her the real truth on why she was riding the scooter today. Doubts had clouded her mind, like an army trying to push into the enemy territory, only to be held back by the enemy themselves.

How would Dash react if she told her the truth, of trying to be awesome like her? Would she be mad, or would she praise the filly for it? Would she take her under her wing and become her big sister, or would she promptly ignore it? Would she even accept her apology at all?

These questions continued to fog her mind, until she realized that these doubts of hers would not be confirmed or denied unless she told her.

“What, Scoots?” Dash asked. “What is it?”

Finally making her choice, the filly closed her eyes and sighed sadly again. She opened them and gazed towards the face of her idol.

“Rainbow Dash, I... I'm sorry," Scootaloo said, calmly, with her eyes downcast.

“Huh? Sorry? For what?”

“For making a big embarrassment of myself by not paying attention on where I was going, and for making you worry like that,” replied the filly. Her eyes gazed up at the pegasus again. “I really should have watched out for that piano, and if I did, I would've stopped myself or dodged out of the way... and maybe I could've continued, just to impress you.”

“Impress me?”

Scootaloo nodded. “All so, you know, you would take me under your wing an-and let me become your little sister and all... That was the real reason why I was out there riding the scooter, all so I could just get your attention.”

Hearing her, Dash was a bit surprised at this, looking wide-eyed. A little orange filly who wanted to become her little sister and be like her, following in her footsteps. Then again, as Dash realized with a calm smile on her face, it wasn't so much of a surprise after all, and it only confirmed her suspicions when she was talking with Applejack earlier.

“So that's why, huh?” The blue pegasus chuckled. “Scootaloo, my awesome little filly, there's no need for you to apologize like that.”

“Huh? Really?”

“Really,” Dash emphasized, leaning forward a bit and looking at her with an almost kind look on her face. “Oh, sure, you got distracted by seeing me and crashed into that piano because of that. But that was just a mistake, and everypony makes mistakes. Hey, we make mistakes all the time! Even I do, from time to time.”

“You do?” asked Scootaloo, looking curious with a bit of a wide-eyed look.

“Well, yeah, but... don't tell anypony that,” Dash said, looking behind and all around her to see if anyone was watching them. “If you do, I'm gonna deny it.”

She looked at her and smiled calmly again. “So you're looking for somepony to take you under their wing, huh?”

“Yeah.” The filly nodded, smiling innocently. “Will you please, Rainbow Dash?”

Just as the blue pegasus was about to answer, suddenly, they heard something that seemed to be coming from outside. To them, it sounded like a couple of airborne jets that were heading towards their direction. A sound that Dash instantly recognized, with a bit of a wide-eyed look on her face.

Gazing over to the window ahead past the filly's bed, the blue pegasus quickly stood up and trotted over to it, placing her front hooves on it and sticking her head outward to look.

“The Wonderbolts!”

Up in the air above, the blue-suited team of eleven pegasi was flying towards the direction of Ponyville at high speeds and in a flight formation that resembled the shape of an arrow, leaving trails of storm clouds in their wake. As Dash watched them approach and pass over the hospital from above, her face slowly went from a surprised expression to one of sadness, frowning as she heard the jet-like thundering roars fade away from the area. Her head tilted downwards as she couldn't help but be reminded of last night's events again.

“Whoa... Was that really the Wonderbolts?” Scootaloo asked, with her eyes a bit wide-looking.

Dash let out a sigh of sadness again. She still couldn't get over it. But she needed to, the pegasus just thought. Else, it was just going to bother her forever as long as she kept it inside of her mind like this.

“Rainbow Dash?” Scootaloo called, hearing her sad sigh and noticing her down-tilted head. “Are you okay?”

“Yeah... I just... Hmm.”

How? Dash thought. How could she truly get over it? After a few seconds of thinking, the answer popped up in her head.

“I... I'm fine, kid.”

Turning around and placing her hooves on the floor, the blue pegasus faced the filly and smiled with a kind look.

“About taking you in under my wing... yeah, sure, I might be up for something like that,” she answered, finally. “Besides...”

Looking at the bed to see if there was room for one more, Dash hopped up on it, causing the bed to bounce upward slightly and surprising the filly with it. She sat down in front of her, and the filly tried to sit up on the bed, feeling some slight pain in her hoof ankle and being careful with it as she sat.

“I oughta pay you back, anyway, for doing one great thing for me in the past,” Dash continued. “That fan club you were the head of, back then. It was definitely awesome of you to do that.”

“Wow, really?” Scootaloo asked, smiling.

“Yeah! I've never had something like that before, honestly. All those fans in there and the rainbow wigs that you guys were wearing. Man, it truly was something else.”

“Wow, thanks, Rainbow Dash!” exclaimed the filly, happily. Hearing her idol praise her like that was making her proud of herself.

Dash chuckled. “No problem, kid. And, well, even though you crashed earlier and ended up here, I still think you had some pretty nice moves riding on that scooter, dodging other ponies and jumping over obstacles like that.”

Hearing that, the filly grinned widely, looking happier than before.

“Soooo, yeah. I'm definitely up for becoming your big sister, Scootaloo,” Dash said, unfolding her right wing and pulling the filly closer to her, leaving her wing on her. “But you got to promise me one thing, kid.”

“Yeah, Rainbow Dash?”

“Promise me that you'll never, ever crash into something again like that. In other words, try not to get distracted next time.”

Scootaloo giggled. “I won't next time. It's a deal.”

The filly moved in closer to her and hugged her with her hooves, with Dash hugging her back with the wing. Both closed their eyes happily as they shared the tender hug together, and with that, the two of them were now officially sisters.

Dash opened her eyes at the filly, with a kind look on her face again. If only to take her mind off of the Wonderbolts, she thought. That, and she truly wouldn't mind having an awesome little sister like this.

---

“Huh, that's really interestin’.”

An hour had passed. The orange pony, Applejack, was quietly sitting up in her bed, reading a magazine that belonged to the hospital, smiling as her eyes went from right to left every second. The magazine she was reading had the front cover of a farming news magazine, displaying all sorts of things that were related to farming in the world out there.

Soon, she heard the door opening in front of her, making her look at who just walked in. It was Twilight, Rarity, and Fluttershy.

“Oh, howdy, everypony,” she greeted, smiling.

“Hey, Applejack,” greeted Twilight. “Just thought we'd drop by and see how you were doing here.”

“Yes. We wouldn't exactly be friends if we didn't visit you and care about you, now would we?” Rarity said. “Especially after that awful fire incident and all.”

Applejack chuckled, putting the magazine down. “Nope, we wouldn't be. I'm glad that ain't the case, though, and I'm glad that you fellas care about me after what I've been through.”

“Most certainly, Applejack,” Fluttershy said.

The three pony friends stopped in front of the bed, with Applejack noticing that somepony was missing, making her suspicious.

“Hey, uh, where's Pinkie Pie?” she asked, with an eyebrow raised.

“Oh, uh, Pinkie couldn't join us,” replied Twilight. “It seems she's been occupied tonight with the Cake Twins over at Sugarcube Corner.”

“Ah, that's why. Watchin’ over them little fillies, eh? I hope they don’t push her over the edge like last time.”

“Yeah, we hope so, too,” Twilight said, chuckling. She then walked to the left side of the bed and faced her. “So how are you doing here, Applejack? Feeling better from yesterday?”

“A little, but I'm gettin' there. Still stings a lot, though. But I honestly can't wait to be back up and workin’ like a farmer again.”

The purple unicorn chuckled. “Of course. Well, you'll get there eventually. It's just a few more days after all.”

“Yup. I hope Ponyville can hold out on them apples and crops by then, since I have no one else out there on the Acres at the moment.”

“Ah, don't worry,” Twilight said. “I just got a report from the mayor that we still have a lot of them in stock, enough 'till you recover at least.”

“Ah. That's good to hear.”

Twilight nodded.

“Hmm. So, I heard from Rainbow Dash about the Changeling attack last night in Manehattan and that she told you about it,” Applejack said, no longer smiling. “Have you got anything from Princess Celestia yet?”

“I did,” replied Twilight, looking a bit serious now. “She said she was going to investigate and that should her scouts find anything, she'll let me know.”

“So those ruffians are still out there doing their petty thievery after all,” Rarity said, with a bit of an angry look. “I don't care if they have to feed. It's still wrong to steal the love from us like that!”

“Well, whatever they're up to out there, whatever they're planning now, we're most likely going to have to use the Elements of Harmony to stop them for good this time,” Twilight said, glancing at the white unicorn.

“Right!” Applejack nodded. “We oughta. I mean, just forcin’ them to get out of the place like last time isn't going to stop them from comin' back over and over.”

“Yeah, if only they didn't block us from getting the Elements last time... Hm.”

Fluttershy looked around, wondering about something. Then, she looked at Applejack. “Uh, not to change the subject here, but... speaking of her, have you seen Rainbow Dash lately? I haven't seen her in a while.”

Just as she asked that, suddenly, they heard a nearly faint string of laughter coming from somewhere, followed by loud chattering. Sounding rather familiar to them, the two unicorns and the yellow pegasus looked in the direction it was coming from.

“Oh, yeah, I forgot,” Applejack said, smiling as she recognized the sounds. “Rainbow Dash told me earlier that she was coming back to visit her, and well, it looks like she's tendin' to her now.”

“Who?” asked Twilight.

---

“So Daring Do ran away from Tigris’ men after they fell into... pony manure?!”

“Ha ha ha! Yeah! Ohhh gosh!”

Dash let out a string of loud laughter. She sat back on the chair she was in, wiggling her lower hooves and laughing towards the ceiling while clutching the book close to her chest with both hooves. Scootaloo laughed aloud as well, sitting on her bed and having just heard a scene from the Daring Do book that her new big sister was reading.

“Oh man!” Dash exclaimed. “Ha ha ha! They fell into pony manure on the street below. How disgusting! Ha ha ha!”

The filly giggled. “I definitely wouldn’t want to be in their shoes like that.”

After a bit, the blue pegasus calmed herself down, trying to regain her posture and taking a few breathers. Then, she looked down at the book she held.

“Oh man... Never thought I'd see that in here. I swear, these Daring Do books are awesome!”

“Hehe. So what happened next?” asked Scootaloo, smiling.

“Let's see.” Gazing down at the book, Dash re-focused her eyes on the words. “'With the two henchmen no longer chasing her, Daring Do stood there, staring at the shining Diamond of the Ancients that she now held with her hoof. Putting it away in her saddle bag, she then looked onwards to the vast wide jungle ahead with the Temple in the middle of it, smiling with determination as she now knew that there was nothing standing between her and the long-lost treasure that it held...' End of chapter three.”

“Wow...” The filly looked amazed as she heard those last words. “So she's going to get that treasure now?”

“It looks like it,” Dash replied, shuffling through the pages. “There's only one chapter left in here, so I'm guessing that she goes inside the temple and tries to dodge all the traps and stuff, just like some of the other Daring Do books I've read. Hmm. Want me to finish it, or...?”

Before she could answer, Scootaloo's amazed look slowly changed into a tired one. The filly yawned loudly, with her eyelids now drooping downward.

“Nah, it's okay. I'm, uh, kinda tired now...”

The filly yawned again, louder and longer this time. Seeing her, Dash closed the book with her hooves and gazed at her with a kind look.

“Getting tired, eh, kid?” she asked, calmly. “Yeah, it’s getting kinda late after all. Here, let me tuck you in.”

With Scootaloo lying herself down and placing her head on the pillow, Dash stood up from the chair and walked closer to the bed. She grabbed the blanket with her teeth and pulled it up and over the filly, who fixed it up a bit with her hooves.

“We'll finish the book tomorrow, then,” Dash said. “But for now, it's sleepy time, I guess.”

“Yeah...” Scootaloo turned herself sideways, now facing her. “Can't wait to see what happens at the end.”

“Me too, Scoots. Me too.”

The filly chuckled. “Thanks, Rainbow Dash. For becoming my… big... sister...”

Scootaloo's eyes were fully shut, and the filly went off to sleep. Hearing her last words, Dash smiled kindly with her eyes half-closed and with her heart being warmed up from within her by the innocent look of the now-sleeping filly.

“'Night, kid.”

Unbeknownst to her, however, somepony was watching her from the open doorway. Peeking in by a few inches, Fluttershy had just seen what had occurred, with a surprised look on her face.

Remembering what she said long ago when the six ponies were traversing the Everfree Forest in search of the Elements of Harmony, realizing it, the yellow pegasus then smiled at this, now knowing that even a tough pony like Rainbow Dash can show a little kindness towards somepony every now and then.

Author's Note:

About Dash's representation of Laughter here, well, see one of my replies in the comments section below. ~SK

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