• Published 26th Apr 2015
  • 4,322 Views, 283 Comments

Wonderbolt Trials and Tribulations - White Comet

Rainbow Dash finally gets the opportunity of a lifetime; a chance to join the Wonderbolts and fulfill her lifelong dream. She presumes that from this point on, it'll be smooth sailing. She was wrong...

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Chapter 5

Rainbow Dash dropped her plate off at the canteen then proceeded to walk out of the mess hall after she had finished dinner. As she pushed through the door, she noticed that the blackboard had been updated with who was eliminated today. She paused and scanned through the list, not taking any notice of anypony on it unless she knew them. She didn’t bother checking for her name, she knew she would be kept in. Why wouldn’t they keep her in? She was Rainbow Dash. Okay, she had a few hiccups on some of the test, but who could flaw her awesomeness? Thankfully, no one she knew was on her list.

She continued back to her room to take a short rest after dinner. As she approached the door, she passed a pony with a saddle bag strung around his back, walking towards the exit. The sight gave her an uneasy feeling in her chest, knowing that she could very well be next. Although she only had to think about it for a second before her confidence took over. She was Rainbow Dash! No way was she going to fail!

When she walked in, she saw that Torque was reading a magazine and White Comet was reading a book. She understood Torque’s reading, as it was nothing too taxing, but how White Comet could read a physics book after a day of mental strain never failed to amaze her. Normally, she would go and grab her Daring Do book and relax for a little while, but she was feeling too mentally drained after the 3rd and final test. The whole test was basically a riddle that sent them back and forth across the grounds for the rest of the day.

As she neared Torque, she saw that he was reading a magazine about airships. She chuckled at the sight, briefly catching his attention before he returned it to his magazine. “I guess that’s gonna be your first purchase on a Wonderbolt’s salary?” She joked as she moved towards him.

Torque’s lips formed a small smile in response. He was starting to lighten up to his teammates, but he still didn’t feel the need to converse unnecessarily. “I…suppose…”

Rainbow Dash chuckled awkwardly at his response, still finding his lack of communication a bit difficult to circumvent. “So…” there was only her and him in the room, besides White Comet, but he looked too focused on his book to be paying attention to them. Now as a good a time as any to ask him. “You seemed pretty…enthusiastic when you went after Riptide in that test.” She had to be careful with her choice of words. He wasn’t exactly the cooperative type when it came to conversations, but if she worded it in the right way, maybe she could get something out of him.

He chuffed in response, “I guess…” his tone implied that he wasn’t getting what Dash was trying to get at. Just the way she wanted it.

“Did you…want to beat him?”

He stopped reading and looked over at her, raising an eyebrow. “Isn’t that the point?” He replied, still not getting the point.

“Well, yeah…” Dash rolled her eyes, “what I mean is, out of all of us, who do you want to beat the most?”

“Grrr…” Riptide gritted his teeth as he searched for an answer.

‘Gotcha!’ “It’s Riptide isn’t it? I saw that look on your face when you went after him.”

“…Fine,” he huffed, “so what if it is?”

“You seemed to get pretty fired up when you got the opportunity to go after him. Do you have a problem with him?” Seeing as she couldn’t beat around the bush any longer, Rainbow Dash threw a more direct question at him.

“No, no, of course not,” he replied sarcastically, a half smile on his face. Rainbow Dash had to double-check that it was him that just said that. It sounded way too energetic and enthusiastic to be Torque’s voice. “Why wouldn’t I have a problem with that…that…” his voice suddenly turned gruffer as he gritted his teeth. “That talentless sack of shit that thinks he can use daddy’s money to buy his way into everything he ever wants!” He growled.

Rainbow Dash took a sharp step back and flattened her ears at his sudden outburst. “Care to explain what happened?” She carried on as best she could, but was still partially in shock as his sudden outburst.

He suddenly put his magazine over his face. “I don’t wanna talk about.” He quickly said as he rolled onto his side and covered the other half of his face with his wing.

Rainbow Dash released a heavy groaning sigh and walked away. Torque sure was hard work, but at least he was starting to warm up to his roommates, despite his opinion of them merely being his competitors. However, it was clear that he had a problem with Riptide. What that was exactly, however, would have to wait for another time.

She glanced at White Comet as she walked over to her bed. “You looked pretty good out there today.” She called to him as she sat down.

He lowered his book and peered over the top of his glasses at her. “I was aiming higher, but what I got will have to do I guess.” He replied with a smile.

“You’re not the only one thinking that,” Rainbow Dash replied as she started preening.

After she was doing preening, she laid back on her bed, resting. She closed her eyes, but she didn’t take a nap or sleep. She was just enjoying the feeling of not having to move. Her body was feeling pretty worn out, but after a bit of rest, it would be ready to get active once again. Her mind, however, was almost completely kaput. She’d never had to do so much thinking in one day in her whole life. Being unable to think too hard about anything at the moment, it was almost like she was sleeping.

About 45 minutes later, she felt a familiar itch in her legs and wings. They were bored. They wanted to be doing something. Her mind tried to convince them otherwise, but they were having none of it. She had plenty of free time this evening, so it was worth doing something. The only thing she could think of that she needed to improve upon right now was swimming. Well, there was nothing else she had to do.

She rolled off her bed and slowly walked towards the door. Her 2 other roommates were too engrossed in their book and magazine to notice her walk out. She didn’t want to break their concentration, so she just walked out unannounced.

The sun was setting, but it was still reasonably light. Even so, the lights inside the building were still turned on. As she reached the gym, she saw some recruits and Wonderbolts training on some of the equipment. Apart from the Wonderbolts, there was nopony she recognised, so she just carried straight on into the pool area.

The pool room was empty, not a pony in sight. She had the whole thing to herself. Although she was glad that nopony would be around to see her failed attempts at trying to swim better, it still had a strange spooky aura to it. The pool had lights underwater, illuminating it from the bottom up.

Rainbow Dash walked over to the edge of the pool at sat down. She was in no rush this time, so she decided that she could take things nice and slow. Besides, after today, she needed to slow it down a notch.

She slowly dipped her hind hooves into the water, taking in the slightly cooler temperature. Once her body had adjusted, she slowly edged herself forwards until her hind legs were completely suspended in the water. Feeling satisfied that she was ready for the temperature, she dropped herself off the edge and into the water, her head only slightly bobbing above the surface, but she was still able to stand.

She walked out a bit further until she got to a depth where she couldn’t stand. She floated around for a few minutes, getting used to the feel of the water and how she could use it to propel herself. After she found herself what seemed like a good technique, she put it into practice, and started swimming towards the deeper end of the pool.

Despite it feeling like she had improved since she was tested on it the other day, she still felt really slow.

She admitted defeat after she reached the end, and started doggy paddling in the opposite direction, since it required less effort and let her think for a minute. ‘I guess I really need somepony to train me. There’s gotta be something I’m doing wrong…’

Her train of thought was suddenly interrupted when she felt something grab her hind hooves. Before she even had a chance to react, she was yanked and dragged underwater. Once she was underwater, whatever grabbed her had released her, and she started flailing her limbs around widely in a desperate attempt to get to the surface. In her unpreparedness, she hadn’t taken a breath, and was desperate for air. She spun her head around a few times to try and see if she could see what got her, but her vision wasn’t very clear underwater. She could barely make out anything in the blue.

As she broke the surface, she took a big gasp for air, and rubbed her eyes to clear her vision. She brushed her mane back, as the weight of the water made it droop over her eyes. She glanced to the left and right, but she didn’t see anything around her that could’ve grabbed her.

“Boo,” a familiar stallion’s voice came from behind her.

Rainbow Dash spun around 180 degrees to face the direction the voice came from. “Soarin?”

“Hey Rainbow,” he greeted, smiling.

“What the hell was that all about?” She demanded, “there’s better ways to make an entry, you know.”

“Just testing you,” he replied with a wink. “What brings you here anyway?”

She shrugged, “I just thought that since this was something I needed to work on, I thought I’d come down and practice. What about you?”

“Meh,” Soarin shrugged, “I just like to randomize my schedule a bit sometimes. Swimming’s pretty good for the whole body.”

“Yeah…” Rainbow Dash looked away and sighed, “except my body never wants to cooperate.”

“I’m sure its just a technique thing. If you don’t do it that often, of course you’re not going to be that good at it.” He explained, “when I first joined the Wonderbolts, I wasn’t that good either, but look at me now!” He suddenly dove underneath Rainbow Dash and surfaced the other side of her, making a big splash that Rainbow Dash got caught in. “See?”

Rainbow Dash didn’t look too amused as her mane slowly drooped over her face. “Oops. Sorry, hehe…” he chuckled.

Rainbow Dash smirked as she brushed her mane out of the way, then pounded the water with her hoof, causing water to splash up in his face. “Hey, C’mon!” He laughed as he splashed back at her.

The 2 of them spraying water at each other caused them to propel themselves in opposite directions until they were out of range of each other. They then swam back towards each other. “Jerk,” Rainbow Dash said sarcastically.

“Hey, you started it!” He replied with a chuckle. “Anyway, I think you’ve been doing pretty good these past few days.”

“You think!?” Rainbow Dash suddenly beamed at hearing she was getting praise from her idol.

“Well, yeah,” Soarin replied, “remember when you did the apex hunter the other day?”

Rainbow Dash nodded, “mmhmm.”

“You really made Spitfire turn her head then. You know why?” As he said that, he put a cheeky grin on his face.

She raised an eyebrow, slightly confused at what he was getting at. “Why?”

“Because you just accomplished something that she couldn’t do; beat White Comet. And boy was she pissed.” He couldn’t help but laugh at his last sentence.

Rainbow Dash’s jaw opened up slightly as she looked away to think about it for a second. When she was done thinking, she looked back at him. “So that’s why she looked slightly angry when I walked past her as I completed the test.” With Soarin’s explanation, it suddenly made sense to her. "Although I don't think it counts, seeing as I didn't beat him at his own game..."

"Own game or not, beating him is beating him." Soarin replied, “we were teasing her about it for most of the day. Boy it was a lot of fun. You not only got Spitfire to notice you, but you also managed to get Fleetfoot turning her head, as she’s the one most keen on White Comet at the moment.”

“Wow…” Impressing 2 Wonderbolts in 1 day? That was an awesome day in Rainbow Dash’s book.

“Now,” he smiled, “all you need to do is impress me more than you already have.” He suddenly did a sharp turn, “race you to the other side!” He said quickly as he pounded the water and raced towards the other side.

“Hey, no fair!” Rainbow Dash complained as she started moving herself.

It didn’t take Soarin long to put a big gap between them. As he was nearing the finish, he looked behind. She was still WAAAAY back, there wasn’t even any competition. Instead of carrying on, he just floated still and waited for her.

“I guess you really are struggling with this aren’t you?”

“Told you I was bad,” she replied, “I came down here to see what I could do to improve.”

“Well, I can spot 2 things for starters,” he replied as he got into a swimming position to show her what she was doing wrong. “You need to extend your legs as far as you can. I can see that you’re still keeping your legs bent as you stroke. That's what's restricting your speed. By extending them fully, that’ll help you get more power out. Also, don’t try and make another stroke right after finishing one. Let yourself glide for a while, you’ll get much more out of it.”

Rainbow Dash quickly took in what Soarin was telling her, smirked at him, then started using what he just taught her to head off in the opposite direction.

After getting about halfway towards the other side, she noticed that she was travelling considerably faster. Soarin’s advice helped a lot. “Now you’re getting the hang of it!” His voice suddenly appeared left of her.

She glanced over at looked at him, “yeah, this is much faster. And less tiring too.”

Soarin smirked, “now all you gotta do is catch me!” He suddenly accelerated hard and pulled away from her. Dash put more effort into her strokes, but he still slowly pulled away. He was the clear winner by about a pony length when they reached the other side.

“Nice going there, Dash.” Soarin said as he pulled himself up and out of the pool.

Rainbow Dash, seeing what he was doing, instinctively wanted to follow him. She put her hooves out and pulled herself up, getting halfway there before her hooves slipped. But instead of falling back in, Soarin reached out and grabbed her, using his waterlogged wings as balance, and pulled her up and out.

“Hehe, thanks,” Rainbow Dash looked away, a little embarrassed by her slip-up.

“Hey, I didn’t see anything.” He replied with a wink and started walking around the right side of the pool. Rainbow Dash followed him.

“So, what’s Fleetfoot got in store for us tomorrow?” Rainbow Dash asked nonchalantly, but was certain of his answer.

“You know I can’t say anything, Dash.” He replied with her predicted answer. “However…”

As his voice trailed off, Rainbow Dash’s ears perked up.

He looked over at her and smirked. “It’s Fleetfoot. You don’t have to use too much of your head to make some guesses.” He said with a wink.

He was right. She didn’t have to think too long about that. “…Something to do with racing?”

“Hey, how should I know? You know I can’t tell.” He replied sarcastically. “Good guess though...” he made a sudden turn to head towards the hot tubs. He walked over to the closest one and turned it on, messing around with 2 or 3 of the settings before stepping his hooves in.

“Well, you know how fast I am. Fleetfoot’s gonna be practically begging me to join after tomorrow.” Rainbow Dash spoke sarcastically. She didn’t need to trash-talk in front of Soarin, he saw firsthoof what kind of speeds she was capable of.

Soarin sat himself down before he replied, “well, I’ll be sure to watch and see how that goes.” He let out as a relaxing sigh as the water jets massaged his body. He looked over at Rainbow Dash, who was just standing there awkwardly. “Are you just gonna stand there, or are you gonna get in?” He questioned as he motioned with his hoof for her to join her.

Rainbow Dash was taken aback by his question. A Wonderbolt, more specifically a male one, just asked her to get in a hot tub with her “Uhhh…” was the only word to get past her parted lips as she felt the heat rise in her cheeks.

Soarin raised an eyebrow. “…Well…?”

“Uhh…well…” Rainbow Dash looked away and rubbed her leg with her hoof whilst chuckling nervously.

“Ooh…” Soarin looked away himself, understanding what he had implied. “Look, I’m not…y’know, trying…” he blushed as he tried to reason with her.

“That’s okay,” Rainbow Dash suddenly perked up. She was still blushing slightly, but she put on the best smile she could as she moved forward to step inside. She was very quick to forget what just happened because she valued her unique friendship with Soarin. Because she didn’t treat him like she was just another fangirling mare, he treated her like she was an actual friend. It had nothing to do with the fact that he was a Wonderbolt.

She stepped into the water and sat in the seat opposite him. The warm water a nice contrast to what she was just swimming in. Because she had just gone from one extreme to another, the effect of the temperature change was amplified.

She sighed as she relaxed back in her seat and closed her eyes. “Relaxing, isn’t it?” Soarin said.

She opened her eyes up, “sure is,” she replied. “I like stuff like this from time to time. I just don’t like the whole spa treatment, y’know.”

“Oh, tell me about it,” Soarin replied with a chuckle as he rolled his eyes. “Although the masseuses here give one hell of a massage…”

“So when are we getting tested by you?” Rainbow Dash questioned.

“I don’t know yet,” Soarin replied. “It was gonna be me tomorrow, but Fleetfoot almost begged me to swap with her, so…maybe the day after tomorrow. Providing nothing else happens…” He sighed, “I haven’t even thought up a plan on what I’m going to test you guys on.” He closed his eyes and rested both his forelegs just on the edge of the hot tub, brushing the control panel slightly. He gently began to lower himself until his shoulders were submerged in the water, with just his head poking out above the bubbles. “Guess I’ll just wing it.”

“Wing it?” Rainbow Dash questioned, raising an eyebrow.

“Yeah, I’ll make something up the night before. If I can’t think of anything between now and then that is.”

“Oh,” Rainbow Dash replied, nodding, then smiling. “I guess that stops me trying to pry what’s happening next out of you, eh?”

Soarin chuckled in response, “I bet you’ll still try.”

“Oh, no doubt about it!” Rainbow Dash laughed at the joke they shared, then looked into the water as she noticed something. “Did the water just get hotter?”

“Not unless you just pee’d. I sure didn’t.” He replied nonchalantly.

Rainbow Dash giggled at his choice of words. "Wow, what a gentlestallion," she said sarcastically. “You really don’t give a shit what you say most of the time do you?”

“Well, when the situation requires it, like when I’m on duty, I can be more restrained. But when it’s casual, I just let my mouth run wild. Got me into trouble plenty of times.” He opened his eyes suddenly as he noticed the temperature change Dash was just talking about. “Wait,” he raised an eyebrow and looked over at the control panel. In his relaxation, when he put his forelegs over the edge, he accidently twisted the temperature gauge. He put it back down to what it was previously.

“What kind of trouble?”

“Hmmm…” Soarin rubbed his chin and glanced upwards, “what’s the best one…oh, I know.” He smiled as he looked back at her. “Almost 2 years ago at our last show in Manehatten, we gave out VIP tickets to our after party. One of the mares started talking to me at the bar. She started talking to me a bit about her sister, then a few seconds later, speak of the devil, she appeared. Turns out her sister was my ex from a while back…yeah, it was awkward. Anyway, her sister left, and we started talking again. She then asked me ‘what’s the best thing you’ve ever done’ or something along those lines…” he took a pause to snicker… “Apparently…” he snickering interrupted his sentence, so he started again. “Apparently ‘your sister’ was the wrong answer.” He couldn’t hold it in anymore and burst out laughing at his final word.

Rainbow Dash joined him in bursting out laughing, splashing about in the water slightly. When their laughter died down, she looked back at him. “Nice to see where your sense of humour sits.”

“Oh, there’s plenty more innuendos where that came from.” He replied in a proud sounding voice. “Trust me,” he said with a wink.

“I’m glad we share the same sense of humour,” she said with a laugh. “So what happened next?”

“Well,” he rubbed his cheek, “that slap’s still reverberating,” he laughed and glanced up at the clock on the wall at the deep end of the pool. “Welp, I’ve got things that need to be done. It was fun to hang out with you again, Dash.” He said as he pulled himself out of the water.

“Uh, likewise,” she replied, blushing a little. Although it wasn’t exactly headline news, she was still struggling to comprehend the friendship she had with Soarin. He was a Wonderbolt. He had other friends who were also Wonderbolts? And he chose to hang with her? Surely other Wonderbolts would be way more awesome than little old her…okay, she took that back. They were equally awesome, but surely he’d prefer to hang around with his regular friends rather than her?

Her thoughts suddenly popped a question into her head. “Hey, I keep seeing you hanging around with other ponies during breakfast and such in the mess hall instead of going to your VIP area. Why do you do that?” She asked as she walked out with him.

Soarin shrugged, “I just wanna learn a bit more about our candidates. We look for more than just flying skill you know, Dash. Something you’ll figure out quite quickly if you make it past the first part.”

Rainbow Dash’s raised an eyebrow, “why’s tha--…nevermind.” She quickly remembered that his lips were sealed, and that he wouldn’t tell her a word.

“In times of conflict, we are a military force. Remember that. That will be something you’ll be trained and tested on after we’ve thinned you out.” He playfully covered his mouth and rolled his eyes. “Woops, I’ve said too much,” he said sarcastically.

Rainbow Dash prodded him in the side, “you big tease. I bet you love stirring up trouble really.”

“Hehe, guilty as charged,” he admitted sarcastically, then turned into the stallion’s locker room. “I had fun this evening, Dash. I’ll see you tomorrow.”

“Yeah, see ya tomorrow,” she replied as she headed into the mare’s locker room herself.

She went straight for the shower and washed the remainder of the chlorinated water off of her. Mostly trying to get it out of her mane and face, as lingering chlorine around her face had a tendency to make her eyes water.

Once she was washed to her satisfaction, she headed back to her room. As she walked through the door, she saw Crash Dive and Horizon sitting in the middle of the room, appearing to be setting up playing cards. “Oh, just in time, Dash!” Crash Dive called. “Wanna play?”

Rainbow Dash shrugged. “I guess…” She wasn’t expecting this to be dropped on her so quickly, but she didn’t want to say no either.

“Great! Who else!?” He asked around.

“I’m in,” Dahila replied as she hopped off her bed and walked towards them.

“Depends on the rules…aw screw it, I’ll play,” Riptide replied as he joined them.

“Well, we all know what rules you’d play with…” Dahila grumbled as she rolled her eyes.

“Comet, you in?” Horizon looked over to him and asked.

White Comet looked away from his book and over at Horizon. He thought about it for a moment, then shrugged, “why not?” He said as he closed his book and walked over. He kept his glasses on though. He only ever seemed to wear his glasses for reading. Rainbow Dash came to the quick decision that she would question him on it in a minute.

“Bright, you playing?” Dahila asked.

Bright Skies looked over at her, but then glanced downwards.

“Brighty?” Dahila questioned again.

Bright Skies mumbled something, but it wasn’t very loud, so she could barely hear.

“Didn’t quite catch that, say again?” Dahila replied.

She groaned slightly, but then took a breath. “I…don’t know how…to play…” she spoke quietly, but just loud enough for them to hear. She flicked her head to bring her sky blue mane over the right side of her face.

“C’mon Bright, we don’t mind teaching you for your first time.” She looked over at the others, “right guys?”

“No problems this end,” Crash Dive replied.

“The more the merrier,” Horizon added.

“I haven’t played that much myself, so the feelings mutual.” White Comet chimed.

“See, c’mon!” Dahila motioned with her hoof for her to get down there.

Bright Skies brushed her mane back so she could see and hesitantly walked over to him.

“Is it even worth asking Captain Grump?” Crash Dive asked.

Dahila rolled her eyes, “Torque, you playing?”

“No.” His answer was short and snappy.

“Not at least once? You might like it.” Horizon tried to persuade.

“No.” He said in the same tone as before.

“C’mon dude, we--”

“No!” He was particulary blunt as Riptide tried to speak to him. Rainbow understood why, but now wasn’t the best time to talk about it.

“Have it your way, Grumpy McGrumpass.” Crash Dive said as he started dealing the cards to all the players. Horizon helped him out by grabbing a silver square-shaped suitcase containing the chips. As they were dealing, Dahila started explaining the rules to Bright Skies.

With nopony else to talk to, Rainbow Dash looked over at White Comet. “What’s up with the glasses? I never see you with them during our tests.”

He looked back at her, “that’s because I only need them for reading. My vision is actually perfectly fine. I just struggle to read. I’m alright for the first few minutes, but any longer, I start getting headaches. By wearing these,” he tapped the frame of his glasses, “it stops me getting headaches.” He slipped them off his face to examine them. They were rimless, and had an extremely thin frame. They almost looked invisible. That was probably the idea behind the design.

Which popped another question into Rainbow Dash’s head. “Those look expensive…”

White Comet chuckled, “they are. But my Dad’s an optician, so he got me them at the most reasonable price in the world; free.” He smirked as he slipped them back onto his head.

“Lucky you,” Rainbow Dash replied, “My Dad works in the weather factory in Cloudsdale. I’ve sorta followed in his hoofsteps up to now…” Rainbow Dash reminisced. The talk of parents made her think about her own. They wouldn’t stop going on about how proud they were that they finally got accepted into the tryouts. She didn’t know who she’d disappoint more if she lost her lifelong dream. Herself or her parents.

“My Dad’s a biologist,” Dahila chimed in. “That’s how he met my mom. She’s a florist.”

“I had a funny feeling that would have something to do with the reason you were named after a flower,” Riptide added. “It’s a beautiful flower, I can see why they chose it for you.”

Rainbow Dash felt her insides turn inside-out at the mush that just spewed out of Riptide’s mouth. Dahila made a similar barfing motion, along with a “bleugh” sound. “That was exactly the opposite of what you normally come out with, except just as bad.” She fed back to him.

Riptide shrugged and held up his hooves, “What? You thought I was all one-liners and innuendos?”

“Well, yeah,” Rainbow Dash replied, joining in the conversation. Her lips formed a smile that couldn’t stop getting wider as a joke popped into her head. “What set of lips are you trying to get between anyway Riptide? Because you don’t seem to be very good at either.”

At her joke, everypony in the room burst out laughing and rolled onto their backs. Crash Dive dropped the cards he was dealing and the force of his snort blew them across to the other side of the room. White Comet was unable to draw in more air from his laughing, so once he was out of breath, he just made a wheezing sound and pounded the floor. Even Bright Skies couldn’t resist a hearty laugh. Riptide heavily blushed as his face scrunched dumbfoundly.

It took a good few minutes for the laughter to die down. Riptide just sat there stupidly, embarrassed beyond belief from being at the receiving end of the joke. “You done?” He grumbled.

“Just about…” Dahila replied with a few snickers. “Anyway, we all said a little bit about ourselves. What about you, Rip? What are your folks like?”

He shrugged, “my Dad runs a business. That’s about it.”

“Really, what business?” Dahila continued to question.

“Can’t quite remember the name…it’s something he and Mom setup. She designs horseshoes and other hoofwear, and Dad does the making. Dad and his team can churn ‘em out pretty fast though, which is why it makes more money than your average brand. Uhhhh…Lakeside? I think that’s the name of the company, something like that.”

Dahila’s jaw pretty much hit the floor at the mention of the company name. “Your folks OWN Lakeside!?” She exclaimed.

“Uhh…yeah…” he replied casually, a bit taken aback by Dahila’s reaction. He didn’t expect it to come as such a shock.

“B-b-but…t-that…that makes you a millionaire!?” She said in a snappy way, her brain struggling to search for words in her shock.

“Well, my parents are…” He chuckled and brushed his mane nervously.

Rainbow Dash wasn’t very up to date on her fashion, but she knew of the brand. Rarity had mentioned it quite a few times as one of her preferred suppliers. If it was good enough for Rarity, then that was a deal sealer. She remembered that she tried to sell a pair at a discounted price to Applejack once, but she described them as being 'too poncey'.

She heard a few grumbles come from the edge of her hearing range. She deduced that they were coming from Torque, as she was sitting nearest to his bed, and he was the only pony behind her to make the noises. She didn’t look at him, but he caused her to think about why Torque disliked Riptide so much. Was Torque jealous of Riptide? That could potentially be it.

She thought about it carefully. Riptide came from a wealthy family, so Torque…possibly the opposite. Even if that was the case, it was still a petty thing to get in such a feud over, right? She mentally sighed, as the fact was, without hearing Torque’s side of the story, she simply wouldn’t know.

“What about you, Bright Skies?” As she picked the conversation back up, it had already moved on, with Dahila now asking Bright Skies.

“Well…” she looked to the floor, “I’m actually an orphan…from Baltimare…”

“Oh…” Dahila suddenly felt a little awkward as an eerie silence filled the air. “Do you...wanna talk about it?” She treaded carefully, not wanting to push the wrong button in Bright Skies head.

Bright Skies shrugged, “I don’t mind…there’s not much to say…” she half smiled, but still had a deflated look in her eyes that implied she didn’t want to talk about it.

“So…” Dahila didn’t know an appropriate question to start off with, so she looked around everypony else to see if they had anything. Rainbow Dash, White Comet and Riptide shrugged, whilst Crash Dive and Horizon were too busy sorting out the cards and chips to notice. “Uhh…” She scratched her head as she thought of a question. “What…when…” she struggled to word what she wanted to ask correctly. “When were you…taken in?”

Bright Skies stared down to the floor, “Immediately after.” Her answer was short, and pretty direct, but didn’t really give enough context.

“Immediately after…what?” Dahila tried to continue, but regretted the decision straight away after she realised that she was probably crossing the line.

“Immediately after…I was born…” Bright Skies spoke quietly. She sighed and closed her eyes, continuing to keep her face pointed to the floor. “I was a…unwanted child…”

Alarm bells suddenly went off in Dahila’s head as the awkwardness in the room continued to expand. She had crossed the line, she had DEFINITELY crossed the line. She needed to get off this topic quickly.

“How about you two knuckleheads?” Riptide quickly came to her aid and broke the ice at the same time by moving the questioning to Horizon and Crash Dive. Dahila relaxed slightly as the pressure was off.

“Las Pegasus, born and raised,” Horizon replied proudly.

“Where else do you think I got all these sweet tricks?” Crash Dive chimed as he tossed the cards around in his hooves, making them do all kinds of crazy tricks and shapes.

“So I’m guessing that one of your parents works at the casino for you to have deck shuffling skills like that?” Dahila asked.

“That would be Dad. He basically spent so much time in there that they offered him a job as a dealer.” Crash Dive said as he distributed the chips.

“He and Mom never told the story of how they met. And it’s pretty strange too, now I’m thinking about it…” Horizon tapped his chin, “he always worked indoors, and Mom was a weather pony, so she was always outdoors. It just doesn’t make sense…”

“Kinda like you then?” Dahila replied nonchalantly.

“Yeah, actually,” Horizon agreed. Well, at least he admitted it. As he set down the final hand of cards and handed them off to his brother, he bought his hand into his hooves as he pushed out the chips to each player that his brother had assisted him in counting. “Alright, let’s get started.” He announced as he examined his cards.

Dash thought about the events that unfolded today as she looked at her cards. Whilst some mysteries were solved, they only made way for more…for Dash, this was proving to be one hell of a ride…

Author's Note:

I've been waiting to write SoarinDash fluff for a while now, and now I finally got to...*squee* :rainbowkiss:

Well, it appears Torque has some beef with Riptide. I wonder what that could be, hmm? :rainbowhuh: I guess we'll have to wait and find out...

Poor Bright Skies, abandoned at birth... :fluttercry:

Thanks for reading! :twilightsmile: