• Published 21st Dec 2015
  • 7,872 Views, 111 Comments

A Sparkle of Hope - TheSillyDuck



A young boy, a little girl, a chance encounter, and a big heart. All of these things will lead to changes in the Sparkle household that no one is prepared for, but will enhance their lives in ways that no one expects.

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A Welcome to Remember

Twilight Sparkle bounded out of her mother’s car towards the school. “Bye, Mom! I’ll see you after school!” Out of the corner of her eye, she saw that Spike was swinging again all by his lonesome. Today. She paused and sighed at the sight of him.

“Ok, sweetie, remember what we talked about! Start small!” Velvet gave her daughter a sympathetic smile and blew her a kiss. Her daughter nodded before disappearing through the front doors to the school. As the doors swung shut Velvet let out a small sigh as she glanced at the playground to what caught Twilight’s attention.

Twilight’s day dragged on incredibly slowly. Despite the fact that the girl was in her favorite environment, she again found her attention drifting out of the classroom windows. Instead of wonder at who the small boy was, now the question was what she would say to him. How could she approach him? What in the world they could even talk about? She found herself so distracted that she was almost late for her next second class

Snapping out of her thoughts at the end of the fourth period, she trudged her backpack towards the cafeteria. Maybe I can think better on a full stomach. Holding her hands to her belly, her stomach gurgled on its own, attesting to just how hungry she was. “For once, you and I are in agreement,” she whispered to herself.

“Twilight, do you mind if I speak with you, dear?” Principal Celestia said as she walked towards her.

“Principal Celestia, I—”

“Relax, Twilight,” she spoke, a smile gracing her face. “You’re not in trouble. After our discussion yesterday I was worried that it might have been a bit too much for you. Today your teachers have all been saying you appeared even more distracted than before. I only want to make sure you’re doing okay with… you know, all of this.”

Twilight breathed a sigh of relief. “No, Principal Celestia. Nothing is wrong. I just…” She paused, unsure how to broach the topic. “I’m trying to figure out how to talk to Spike. I… umm… I kinda want to, maybe… be his friend. And even invite him to dinner, but I don’t even know if he’d want to talk to me, much less come over. Would it be okay if he came over for dinner?” The studious girl folded her hands in prayer, looking up to the administrator longingly.

Even if had Celestia wanted to say no—which she didn’t—seeing the adorableness of the ten-year-old girl stumbling over herself and asking for approval to have Spike over for dinner would have destroyed any resistance she might have had. The grown woman had to physically fight against the urge to pick up Twilight and hug her with all her might.

The principal bent down on one knee and wiped a tear from her eye. She reached a hand into her pocket and pulled out a small piece of candy. “He likes taffy,” she said with a smile as she handed the small girl the candy. “As far as what to say, just talk to him, Twilight. He’s just a little boy, not an alien from another planet.”

“I know that,” Twilight protested, biting her lower lip.

Celestia’s heart broke at that. It was ‘unprofessional’ but she hugged the little girl right there. She just couldn’t resist. “Twilight, you don’t have to say anything specific, just talk to him. Just like you would any other little boy.”

“I’ve… um… never really talked to a boy before.”

“What about your brother?”

“Shiny? He’s not a boy, he’s… my B.B.B.F.F.”

Celestia stared at the little girl for a moment before her hand came up to cover her mouth as she let out a small chuckle. The innocent heart of such a little girl. Ah, youth. How wonderful they are.

“Then just think of Spike as your L.B.B.F.F., if it helps.”

“I… I suppose I can do that. I asked my parents if we—” Twilight’s eyes widened and her hands came up to cover her mouth. Did I really just say that out loud.

“Oh, you talked to your parents about Spike? Did they… say anything about him I should know?”

Twilight stared up at the principal, the woman that essentially determined her future. She’s not angry at me? Why isn’t she angry at me? I told somebody! I told more than one person! I told my mom and dad and Shiny! What if Shiny told all his friends! “No, they just said to invite him over for dinner.”

Celestia smiled down at the girl, a hand reaching out to rest on the small girl's shoulder. “Twilight.”

Twilight mumbled a word of acknowledgement but her eyes were focused on the ground. Thousands of thoughts were running through the young girl's head, none of which would see the light of day, but they still bothered her to say the least.

“Twilight, look at me. I’m not angry that you told your parents. I’m glad you talked to them.” She ran her hand softly across the little girl's chin. “If Spike wants to go to dinner with you tonight, he has my permission, but Twilight?”

“Yes?”

“You’re only going to know if you ask him.”

Twilight finally looked up to meet the principal's eyes. Celestia was smiling brightly at her, confidence radiating from the older woman. Straightening up, her hands finally dropping from her mouth, she smiled brightly back at the headmistress. I can do this. The worst he will say is no. But why does the thought of him saying no hurt so much. Why do I want him to say yes so badly? Is it him, or that I don’t want to be lonely any more? Is this selfish of me? No, we’d both be gaining a friend, and he a family that would love to have him.

Twilight nodded, her little bangs bouncing on her forehead with the movement. She held up her right hand, her little fingers closed into a fist with her thumb sticking up. “You can count on me Principal Celestia!”

Celestia smiled before standing back up to her full height, she gave a small wave before turning around to walk back to her office. Do your best Twilight Sparkle. I just know you can get through to Spike, and I just know he’ll be a good friend to you as well.

Twilight watched the tall headmistress until she disappeared from view. Immediately releasing a breath she didn’t know she was holding, she turned towards the cafeteria.

“Okay Sparkle, now’s your chance! You can approach him at lunch. Everybody should be in the cafeteria by now. Spike should be there too! Uh, wait. He’s normally in the office. Shoot, I didn’t pack my lunch today. I guess I can go grab my lunch and take it to the office. But what if he’s not in there! Calm down, Twilight. Why am I talking to myself...“ Twilight slapped a hand to her forehead before slowly making her way down the hall.

One long line later and she finally had her tray of poorly made, questionably edible, questionably colored, food. Am I really that hungry? I can make it to dinner. Twilight’s stomach grumbled again answering her own question. With a sigh, she lazily cast a glance around the room, her eyes passing over a spiky green head of hair before immediately locking onto it. No way… He’s eating lunch in here today! I wonder if Principal Celestia asked him to...

The cafeteria was beyond loud with children running around with teachers trying to calm them down, yet Spike just seemed to be in his own world. He was sitting at an empty table in the back corner of the room. No one seemed to have noticed him; all the other students that attended the school were each at their own tables chatting amongst each other.

Students began shuffling past Twilight as she continued to stare towards the back of the room. With a deep breath, she made her way down the center of the room, her gaze staring down at her plate. Okay Twily, you can do this. First things first, just ask if you can sit with him!

Two steps from the seat in front of the young boy she stopped, her hands shaking the items on her tray. Spike blinked up at her, his mouth forming a small circle as he curiously looked at her.

Twilight smiled softly, her eyes meeting his. “H-Hi, c-can I sit w-with you?” Nailed it!

Spike smiled and nodded slowly, his small hand gesturing to the seat in front of him. His eyes held a note of worry, but were somewhat hopeful as well. It gave Twilight a little boost of courage as she sat her tray down and pulled the seat out. Sitting down, she folded her hands in her lap and stared down at her plate.

Great, step one, done. Step two, Twilight blinked twice. I didn’t even make a plan. What is wrong with me! I normally have a list! I don’t even have time to make a list, plus it’d be really awkward to start making one in front of him. Just ask him something, ask him his name! Genius Sparkle. Simply Genius.

Twilight opened her mouth to say something and then raised her eyes to the young boy in front of her, instantly snapping her mouth shut. He was staring at her, his face blank of emotions.

Twilight instantly dropped her gaze to his plate in front of him. It looked as though he had attempted to eat the mush they attempted to serve as lunch, but he couldn’t get through more than half of it. It’s too bad I didn’t pack my lunch today, we could’ve shared it. Or I could of asked mom to pack me an extra sandwich and some snacks. Great plan Twily, why didn’t you think of it earlier.

“It’s not very good is it?” She raised a hand to point at his tray.

He dropped his gaze to look down at it, the corner of his mouth pulling into a smirk before shaking his head, his spiked hair rustling with the movement.

You talked to him! Great! Keep going.

“So… d-do you like this school? I like this school very much. I think the academics are great, academics meaning like literature or reading, math and sciences, and all that work they give us in the classrooms. Not that you didn’t know what that means! Not that it’s bad if you didn’t know what it means. But it’s okay if you didn’t! I mean, I-I… I’m just going to shut up now.” Twilight placed both hands over her face, blushing hard and avoiding the boy’s eyes.

After a moment, Twilight felt a gentle touch on her arm. She looked between her fingers to see that Spike had leaned forward and was patting her arm to let her know it was okay, he wasn’t offended at all. He just smiled at her, amusement flickering in his bright green eyes.

He sat back in his seat when their eyes met, her arm dropped back to her lap before she sat up straight and closed her eyes. He watched as she extended her right arm out in front of her before balling her hand into a fist, pulling the arm tight to her chest as she inhaled before extending the same arm out, fist curled and a breath released slowly from her mouth. Her eyes opened back up, confidence flaring in her lavender irises.

“Sorry about that, I’m just really nervous. I’ve never made a friend before, not that we’re friends yet! I’ve just seen you out on the playground by yourself a lot, and I’m always by myself so I thought maybe we could be by ourselves together!” She slapped a hand over her face. “I mean hang out together instead of being alone all the time. I’m usually stuck up in the library by myself, it’s nice to get studying done and all, but being alone all the time is, well… lonely.”

Spike dropped his gaze to the table, his throat working. He squeezed his eyes shut and curled his tiny hands into fists in front of his tray.

“Spike?” Twilight reached a hand forward, placing it on both of his closed fists.

His eyes opened slowly, tears began building up as he clenched his teeth. He just stared down at her hand, the tears leaving trails down his cheeks and dripped off onto her, but she didn’t pull her hand away. She merely lifted her other hand and wiped under his eyes, her hand then reaching up to softly brush his hair out of his face.

Twilight didn’t say anything else, she just continued to hold his hands and brushed her fingers softly and soothingly through the young boy’s hair.

They sat there for awhile, the room around them still a chaos of noise and movement. Eventually the bell rang signifying the start of the next class period, the rest of the students quickly dumped their trays and other assortment of trash before filing out of the massive room.

Spike and Twilight continued to stay in their seats, the young girl, of course, biting her lip as she glanced around. Being late to class was not good in her book. The T-word was not in her dictionary, and if she had it her way it never would be.

“H-how do you know my name?” Spike asked softly, so softly if it wouldn’t have been quiet in the room Twilight wouldn’t of heard it. Her gaze instantly swung back to the boy after having been looking at one of the teachers motioning for her to get going.

“Principal Celestia told me when I asked her. As much as I’d like to continue this conversation we’re about to get in trouble. How about I walk you to class and then we talk after school is over?” What did I just say? Did I just say I’d walk him to class? I’m so going to be tar- don’t you even think it Sparkle! Just get him to class, and say you had to use the bathroom or something when Mr. Noteworthy asks why you were la- the last one to class. Keep it cool Twilight. Just walk him to class and you can talk later. You still have to ask him to come over for dinner. Why did he get so nervous when you said his name? Nevermind. Questions later. Move now.

Twilight stood up from her seat, her hand moving from Spike’s to pick up her tray. She waited for him to stand up with his own tray before making her way to the garbage can. Both dumped their barely touched food before resting the trays on top, then making their way out the door.

“Okay, where’s your class?” Twilight shifted her gaze from looking both directions down the hall to the young boy standing next to her.

Spike looked up at her before pointing a small hand to the left.

Twilight nodded before grabbing his extended hand and dragging him down the hall, Spike stumbling over his smaller legs as they went.

After some more silent directions from the young boy they finally made it to his classroom. His breath coming in small pants as he bent over, his free hand resting on his knee as his other continued to hold the older girl's hand.

Twilight blinked down at him. Was I really walking that fast? I know he’s shorter than me, but I can’t believe he’s out of breath. Oh well, we’re here now.

“Alright, well I need to go to my class now. It’s down at the other end of the hall. I’ll meet you at the playground after school alright? I might be a little late. I have some books to drop off at the library but I’ll be there. Okay?”

Spike looked up at Twilight questioningly. “I don’t even know your name.”

Twilight blinked. How could I forget to introduce myself? My parents taught me better than that! Great first impression.

Twilight went to open her mouth but the door opened and a teacher she had seen around the halls but never had spoken to was looking down at them.

“Spike, is everything alright? Is this girl bothering you? Young lady, you’re supposed to be in class.” Spike’s teacher pushed her glasses up on her nose as she spoke.

“Yes ma’am, see you after school, Spike!” Twilight turned on her heel and tossing a wave at Spike before running down the hall towards her class. Well, I’ll just have to introduce myself later. Geez, that teacher looked mean. I hope Spike is doing okay in that class.

Skidding to a halt in front of her classroom, Twilight took a breath before opening the door. Mr. Noteworthy was reading something out of a book but he lowered it to stare down his glasses at the young girl. Twilight laughed awkwardly before hurrying to her seat.

Throughout the remainder of the class, he would periodically glance up at Twilight, but said nothing about her showing up late to class.

***

To Twilight, her remaining classes flew by. She had talked to Spike and was no longer fretting about that initial conversation, but now she was fretting about an entirely different problem.

How do I ask him to dinner. Well, I know HOW to ask him to dinner, but how do I ask him? I mean… ugh, think Twilight! Think think! You can do this!

Fortunately for Twilight, and much to the chagrin of her classmates, each of her remaining classes were punctuated by pop quizzes or quiz-bowl games. To Twilight, she truly was in her element, something that helped distract her from her obsessive thoughts.

The ringing of the bell signaling the end of her last class completely tore that sense of security away from her.

As the classroom cleared of students, Twilight delicately packed away her belongings, each book and pencil placed carefully in its labeled spot in her backpack. Ok Twilight, you can do this. You’ve already talked to him once, the hard part’s done. All you have to do is walk up to him and strike up a conversation, just like Celestia said. How difficult can that be?

Walking out to the playground she saw him in his usual spot. Spike was on the swingset again, all alone, again. The few kids who had remained after school had started to wander towards the curb as their parents arrived to pick them up. Twilight stood still, just watching him swing back and forth, not paying the other children any mind.

Slowly, she walked up to the swing set and gingerly set her backpack next to the support. Sitting on the swing next to him, she kicked her feet back and forth without really moving, dragging her toes in the slightly damp wood chips layering the playground.

“Hi,” Twilight said sheepishly. “I’m Twilight Sparkle.”

Spike glanced over at her, slowing down his swinging just slightly, an action that was barely noticeable.

“I’m sorry if I was weird earlier. I… I can imagine what that would be like. Some random girl just walking up to me and talking to me, knowing my name without even introducing herself? I’d be a bit freaked out too. I-I was just nervous.”

Spike continued to swing without so much as even looking at the shy girl.

Twilight huffed and got up to reach into her backpack, searching for something. Spike simply sat there, looking at her, a curious expression on his face. A quick “ah hah” escaped from Twilight’s lips, as she pulled her most prized possession out of her backpack. She turned to Spike, holding up her Smarty Pants doll.

“This is Smarty Pants, my number one assistant and closest friend.” Twilight held the stuff animal out in front of her, smiling brightly at the button-eyed pony.

Spike looked at the doll curiously, his brow scrunched together and his tiny mouth forming a circle.

Twilight looked over at him and laughed. “I know she seems a little worse for wear. I've had her since the day I started at this school. My dad gave her to me. She’s someone I can always count on and play with, even when things weren’t so good. She goes with me everywhere, helps me do my homework, and study for my tests. When I get lonely she just listens to me talk and I feel a lot better. Plus no matter how hard I squeeze her she won't run away.” Twilight giggled, demonstrating by squishing the little pony to her chest.

Spike smiled at the older girl. His little hands squeezing the chains suspending his seat on the swingset.

Twilight's expression fell a little and she pulled Smarty Pants away from her to look in the tiny, mismatched blue and red button eyes. She smiled sadly at her before turning to Spike. “Sometimes it helps to just be able to play with a friend.” She extended her arms to pass the toy over to the green-haired boy. Smiling, she asked, “Would you like to hold her?”

Spike blinked a couple of times before unfurling one of his fists from around the chain to point at himself, as if to ask if she meant him.

Twilight nodded, smiled softly, and held Smarty Pants outward towards the young boy. Smarty’s little paws extended out to Spike as if the doll wanted a hug.

Spike stared it for a moment before hesitantly reaching out, his tiny hands brushing against the older girl's as she passed him her prized possession. The young boy looked curiously into the button eyes of the well-loved stuffed pony. On closer inspection he noticed matching patches on the doll’s forehooves, tiny blue squares sewn into the grey pony. He gently placed one of his thumbs on a patch and rubbed it softly before looking up at Twilight.

Smiling kindly, Twilight rubbed the palms of her hands on the skirt of her dress.

“That was sort of an accident, Shiny thought it was funny to nail Smarty to a wall above where I could reach. She hung there for hours until my parents got home and saw her. My dad pulled her off the wall and together he and I patched her hooves. Shining got in trouble for it though. He couldn’t have dessert that night, and he got to watch Smarty and I eat ours. My mom and dad told him he was supposed to be baby sitting me, not torturing me. He told them I was getting on his nerves so he had to do something. To this day I don’t let him near Smarty Pants, she’s too good for him to hang out with anyways.” Twilight giggled girlishly, while Spike just smiled. “He’s sorry for it now. Even offered to get me a new one. But I told him there’s only one Smarty Pants and he could never replace her.”

Spike turned back to Smarty, his smile never falling. Gently, he pulled the small pony into a tight hug and nuzzled his face into her mane, the little strings tickling his nose caused him to chuckle.

Twilight got back on the swing and began swinging back and forth, enjoying the afternoon air of the autumn day. She didn’t go very high, but the movement still caused her to laugh carelessly.

Spike held tightly to Smarty with one hand and kicked up, swinging in tandem with the older girl. Both laughing lightly, the breeze blowing their hair and twin smiles never leaving their faces.

Neither had the need to strike up a conversation at the moment, they were both content to just swing back and forth, never going higher than one another. Smarty’s string mane flopping up and down while the young boy squeezed it tightly to himself, his other hand holding tight to the chain.

***

Twilight Velvet pulled up to the curb, brakes squeaking as she ground to a stop. A smile graced her face as she looked over to the school’s playground and saw Twilight and who she could only assume was Spike swinging together, Smarty Pants held between them.

Celestia looked out on the playground from her office, the golden sun setting into the horizon behind the children. She smiled to herself as Velvet pulled up to the curb and Twilight sprinted toward her mother.

Twilight popped open the door to her mother’s car, dropping her bag into the seat and sticking her head in to talk to her mom. “Hi mom.”

“Hi sweetheart, have a good day?”

“Mhmm, Celestia said ‘yes’ to Spike coming over to dinner. Are you still okay with it?”

“Of course darling, why don’t you go ask him. Looks like your Principal has come out to see him off.”

Twilight froze. Crabapples! I forgot to ask him!

“Thanks, mom!”

Twilight ran back up the walkway to the front of the school, she stopped short in front of her headmistress and a confused Spike.

Spike wasn’t quite sure what was going on, but he knew whatever it was would give him a chance to talk to the older girl. She wasn’t that much older than him, but he didn’t know what grade she was in. It’s not that he didn’t have the chance to ask her, but that he was too shy, and slightly scared to ask.

Celestia had come out to talk to him. Which in and of itself was strange because she normally left him to himself until it was time to go back her home. There they would eat dinner and then he would spend the rest of the night reading books from her personal library.

His caretaker had told him that Twilight had asked permission for him to come over for dinner with her family. Shock had taken a hold of him and he turned to watch the dark haired girl bound toward them from the awaiting car.

Spike watched silently as the the older girl and the principal talked, a miscommunication revealing itself as Twilight had forgotten to even ask him.

Why is she going through all this trouble to hang out with me? Do I even deserve this kind of attention? Did Principal Celestia put her up to this?

Unintentionally Spike squeezed the little stuff pony still in his possession to his chest, nuzzling his face into her mane and releasing a sigh.

Twilight turned to him, and then, smiling brightly, asked, “You do want to come with me, right, Spike? You can hold on to Smarty. I don’t mind sharing her, plus between me and you, you’re cool enough to hang out with the both of us.”

Blinking a couple of times, he looked up. His face contorting once again into confusion.

“To dinner I mean, would you like to come over to my house for dinner tonight?”

Spike frowned and looked at his shoes. I’ve never been to anybody else's house before besides Principal Celestia and orphanages. If I go, Twilight might ask me about where I was before I came to this school. What if I do something they don’t like or break something? I don’t want Twilight to stop talking to me, I don’t want to be alone anymore.

“Spike? It’s okay to be scared. I’ll be right by your side, and my family is really nice too! They won’t be mean to you or anything. Shiny might tease you but he’s harmless, just a big teddy bear. I promise I won’t let anything happen to you, and Smarty Pants will be there too! We’re your friends.”

Spike instantly shot his eyes up to the older girl. “F-friends?” he spoke for the first time, his eyes watering and his arms squeezing Smarty tightly once more.

“Of course we’re friends, Spike! I know we don’t know that much about each other yet but I read a book recently that told me friends are people who hang out with each other and talk about stuff. We haven’t really done either of those things but I’d like to! If you give me a chance I’m sure we’ll be great friends, and maybe one day you can think of me like your big sister. If that’s alright with you I mean.” Twilight bit her lip and kicked her shoe across the concrete path, her hands clasped behind her back.

“Big sister?” Spike’s grip on Smarty loosened and she dropped to the ground. Tears were running down his cheeks and he lifted his hands to rub at his eyes, his teeth clenched.

Twilight didn’t even hesitate to pull him into a hug, burying her face into the green mop of hair that rested on the young boy’s shivering body. She whispered heartfelt words to sooth him.

Tears wracked his small form, his hands reached forward to clench into the skirt of the young girl's dress. Why?... Why now?... I was doing fine on my own. I didn’t need anybody. Celestia, why? Why are you just standing there, watching this, watching us. Can’t you see this hurts me? She’s just going to go away, just like everyone else. Twilight’s going to leave me. Why did I let her get close to me? I’ve barely known her a day and it already hurts so bad to think she might go away. I can’t, she can’t go. No one has ever called me their friend before. I want to be her friend, and maybe one day… one day I can think of her as my family. Family… oh how horrible it is to hear everyday other kids being picked up by their moms and dads, their weekend plans, the trips, the moments of love between them.

Harsh sobs left the young boys mouth, his tears soaking Twilight’s dress but she didn’t seem to pay it any mind.

Celestia just watched, her heart aching, but this was something that Spike needed, and with the look on Twilight’s face it seemed to be something she needed as well. Lifting her gaze, Celestia watched as Twilight’s mother got out of her car, watching the same moment. The both of them knew that intervening would cause more harm than help.

Ten minutes later the two young students were quiet, tears were dry and they just held each other. Twilight stroking his back slowly, and Spike sniffing trying to catch his breath. Smarty Pants lay at their feet, staring up at them.

Spike looked down at the raggedy maned doll and then up at Twilight before meekly nodding his head up and down in answer to her question.

“Yes-yes-yes-yes-yes-yes-yes!” Twilight skipped circles around the boy before coming to a halt in front of him. Looking at the smirk on Celestia’s face and the wide-eyed look on the boy she stopped, smoothed out the front of her dress, and spoke. “Um… yes,” she said with a reserved smile.

Looking to Celestia with a raised brow, the principal nodded at the young girl. “C’mon, Spike!” Twilight grabbed his hand and pulled him from the swing, almost dragging the boy to her mother’s car. “Mom! He said yes!”

Twilight Velvet smiled at her daughter as she unlocked the car, allowing the children to clamber into the back seat.

As Velvet pulled away from the school Twilight was nearly bouncing in her seat. “This is going to be so much fun, Spike! We can talk, and play, and read books, oh! So many books!” Casting a glance at the boy she frowned. “Okay, maybe not so many books.” The boy visibly sat taller in his seat. “But we’re still gonna have fun!”

***

Arriving home, the children bounded through the door, delicious smells of sautéed vegetables and toasted breads wafted through the air and graced their noses. Night Light was in the kitchen hard at work preparing the evening’s meal, a fifth place was already set around the dinner table.

“Hi Dad! This is Spike,” she added, pulling the boy through the door to the kitchen. “I’m gonna go show him my books!”

Night Light scarcely had a chance to turn around and see the lavender and green blurs whiz past him through the kitchen and up the stairs. Turning to his wife with a quizzical expression, Velvet’s smile said it all. He shook it off, smiled, nodded, and went back to the cooking.

As Twilight bounded up the stairs and toward the door to her room, Shining Armor was walking out of his. He stepped back to avoid the near catastrophic collision of little children and too much energy. He reached out towards his little sister in hopes of calming her down.

“Woh there, Twily! Is this the little guy you were talking about?” Spike’s gaze dropped to his feet. “Hey, c’mon buddy. Any friend of Twily’s is a friend of mine,” he said with a smile.

Spike looked back up at the teenager with a smile. He’s my friend too? “I-I’m Spike. It’s a pleasure to meet you…”

“Shining Armor. Glad to meet you too, Spike.”

“Ok, introductions good. Books now. C’mon, Spike!” Pulling the little boy by his arm into her room, she slammed the door behind her. Shining Armor chuckled to himself before walking down the stairs, hopes of stealing bites of what was soon-to-be dinner running through his mind.

“So, Spike, this is my room.” Twilight gestured around her with a smile. Bookshelves lined each wall save for the one her bed was pushed against. Academic trophies lined the tops of each shelf, their golden ornaments glinting in the light from the ceiling fan.

“Personally I’ve always been a fan of history and science,” Twilight said, pulling down several large tomes. “But there’s something to be said for comparative mathematical formulas and the implementation for experimentation through exponential divide and radical equations…” Twilight tapered off as she saw the blank expression on Spike’s face.

“Orrrrrr maybe something a bit more…” she coughed, “low key? What sort of things do you like, Spike?”

“Oh, I don’t know… stuff, I guess.” Spike rung his hands together, trying to stave off the uncomfortable feeling that was overtaking him. She wants to be my friend but she doesn’t even understand me. “Time and pressure, I guess. Things I’ve had plenty of.”

“Why Spike! I didn’t know you were a fan of geology!” The boy’s eyes perked up at her understanding of what he had just said.

Reaching behind a trophy on a top shelf, she grabbed a large, crystalline geode. Handing it to the boy, she spoke. “Shiny got this for me at our last trip to the Crystal Empire’s mines. He said it was called a—”

Spike interrupted, “An amethyst quartz. With a six sided pyramid. Did he find it like this? This is incredibly rare!”

Twilight smiled at the look of wonder in Spike’s eyes as he entered his element. “Yeah, we were walking through on one of the tours after a recent excavation and that was hidden under a pile of slag. I don’t think he was supposed to take it, but he did anyways. Best. Big brother. Ever!”

Spike chuckled as he looked over the geode, the intricate lines dancing in the crystal, the shades of purple and lavender mixing in a whirlwind throughout.

“You know, Spike, I just so happen to have a Trivia Pursuit—science game here, and it’s got a whole section on geologyyyyy.” When Twi spoke she tried to put as much emphasis on the word geology as possible to try and goad the boy into a game.

“It. Is. On!” he cried in return.

***

Twilight bit her lip, her eyes closed in deep concentration, as she tried to figure out the answer to Spike’s question.

“Come on, Twilight, it’s easy!” I hope she’s not just letting me win.

The little brat. Looking down at her own measly two colored pieces for winning a category, she sighed as she looked over to the five he already had. That wasn’t even taking into consideration the three games before this that he had already won.

“Shining Armor, Twilight, Spike, dinner’s ready!” Night Light’s voice bellowed up the stairs and into her bedroom.

Saved by the dinner bell! “Sorry Spike, dinner time, let’s go eat!”

Spike laughed to himself, “Sure thing, Twilight. Besides, it’s not like the game is going anywhere,” he said with a smirk.

Green haired little brat.

Reaching her hand out to the little boy, she smiled again. “C’mon Spike! You’re gonna love my dad’s cooking.”

Tentatively, he reached out and grabbed her hand, letting her pull him into the hall and down the stairs. Is this what it’s like to have a friend? I… I like this.

Walking into the kitchen, Night Light was serving up helpings of stir fry onto each of the five plates around the table.

The small boy spoke up, “Can… can I sit next to Twilight.”

“Of course you can, kiddo,” Night Light responded.

Looking across the table at Spike, Shining Armor couldn’t help but speak up as he sat down. “So does this mean I can bring Cadance over for dinner sometime? I figure with how we usually eat it shouldn’t matter that she’s a vegetarian, right?”

Without even looking up, Night Light responded to his son. “Well I don’t know son, have I met herbivore?”

Twilight and Velvet both snickered, Shining Armor grew red in the face, and Spike nearly spit out the water he had just taken a sip of.

“Don’t worry about it, Shiny,” Night continued, you can always take her to the new movie playing this weekend too.”

“Really? What’s it about?”

“Oh I don’t know, about two hours, give or take.”

Dinner with the Sparkles was something Spike had never imagined he would ever get to be a part of. That being said he never thought he would experience a family dinner at all that included him as one of their own.

Night Light’s jokes brought laughter to the young boy, warmth joyously building up in his heart. The table was never quiet for long as they had passed the plates around, and proceeded to enjoy quality time with eachother.

Watching Twilight’s older brother Shining Armor hide his face embarrassingly, and even Twilight smiling ear to ear almost brought Spike to tears. For the moment, it really felt like these were his older siblings and the two kind hearted parents were his own too.

“Oh, Shiny, I showed Spike the geode you got me, he knew everything about it!” Twilight’s exclamation caused the shy boy to blush and earned a grin from her older brother. “It’s true,” Twilight exclaimed at her brother’s reaction.

“I don’t know about everything,” Spike interjected, “I just like geology. rocks, crystals, and gems are just really cool to me.”

“Oh oh! I know, Dad? Can we take Spike with us next time we go to the Crystal Mountains?” Twilight specifically timed her question to coincide with her father taking a bite, ensuring his answer could only be a nod of the head. Spike quickly went back to his food as the family delved into a discussion on another vacation and subsequently their usual business.

So this is a normal family, Spike thought, I wish I could get used to this.

As dinner came to an end, Spike’s smile never once deviated from his face. For the first time in a long time, Spike knew what it was like to have friends and a family.

Shining Armor helped his father clear the table as Twilight dragged Spike back to her room to finish their game. All good things must come to an end though, as Twilight Velvet’s voice carried through the house.

All too soon it was time for the young, green haired boy to go home.

“Spike! It’s time to go, dear. I promised Principal Celestia I’d have you back before you turned into a pumpkin!”

I don’t want to go. Looking at Twilight with an uneasy smile, he hugged Smarty Pants one more time. “Can… can we do this again sometime?”

“Of course we can, Spike!” Instead of hugging Smarty Pants, she hugged the small boy with all her might. “But c’mon, we can’t do this again if you get in trouble for being late. I’ll walk you down,” she said, reaching out with her hand to the small boy.

Twilight started babbling at top speed about something she was learning in class as they made their way to the doorway. Mrs. Sparkle wasn’t even five steps behind them. She had grabbed her keys and would be the one taking him home, which he was glad for. As much as he loved being with Twilight, he felt like he was going to break down again at any moment. Even if he felt embarrassed about it he knew in his heart Mrs. Sparkle wouldn’t judge him for it. Not that it would matter if she did or not. Spike didn’t care much for other people's opinions, he did as he pleased and did the minimum work to keep others away. Being in the Sparkle home today though was definitely a different experience for the little boy.

“Spike, before you go I just wanted to say what a pleasure it was to have you with us tonight and you are welcome to join us anytime. In fact, I might send off Twily here and keep you. She wouldn’t mind to much, I’m sure your principal would love to have someone to help her with all that paperwork she has.” Mr. Sparkle had just come out of his study, his reading glasses settled low on his nose as he smiled down at the young boy, while ruffling his youngest child's hair.

“Dad! Stop it!” Twilight wrapped her tiny hands around her dad’s wrist and was struggling to pull his hand away from her head. Night Light merely chuckled and lifted up his hand, pulling the little girl off her feet. He wrapped his other arm around her to hold her on his hip as he kissed her forehead, causing Twilight to giggle girlishly.

Spike smiled up at the two of them, the look of joy on his “B.S.B.F.F.” warmed his heart. A soft hand wrapped around his shoulder, causing him to look up into the kind eyes of Twilight Velvet. She was smiling peacefully, her gentle touch causing Spike to lean into her as she spoke.

“Are you ready to go home now, Spike? I’m sure principal Celestia is waiting on you. Plus you all have school tomorrow, isn’t that right, Twily?”

Twilight looked up from talking quietly with her dad, her smile bright and welcoming. Spike couldn’t help but grin back at her.

“Oh yeah! We do have school tomorrow, not that I forgot or anything. I just meant we can hang out tomorrow before and after school, if you want to that is. Maybe we can have lunch together again? It’s better than just sitting alone. Do you want to Spike?” Twilight looked at him, hopefully and curious.

How can I say no to that? Maybe Principal Celestia will let me come over here again, and maybe she’ll let me bring some books from her library over here, or maybe Twilight can come over and play with me! I don’t have many toys, but she seems to like science stuff more than toys anyways. Hopefully she’ll bring Smarty Pants over. I really like that stuffed animal. I really like being around Twilight and the Sparkles. I wish I could stay here, even just for a little while longer. I’m not even going to be able to sleep tonight with how much fun I had. Please don’t go away Twilight. You’re my best friend.

“Of course, Twilight! I’d love to hang out with you more.” Spike smiled brightly, not for the first time this evening.

“Alright, Twily, it’s time for you and Shining to go get ready for bed. Say goodnight to your friend.” Night Light said, gently resting his daughter on her feet.
Twilight immediately wrapped her arms around Spike, hugging him close. His own arms wrapped around the older girl without a second thought. They squeezed tight, Twilight nuzzling her cheek into the mess of green hair that laid on Spike's head.

“Goodnight, Twilight,” the little boy spoke softly, his tiny fingers clenching into the back of her dress.

“Goodnight Spike, I’ll see you tomorrow. Promise.”

Spike nodded before letting go and wiping at the wayward tears that had built up in his eyes.

Twilight gave a small wave before running back down the hall and up the stairs to get ready for bed.

Night Light nodded at the small boy, kissed his wife on the cheek, and then returned to his study.

“Hey Spike! It was nice to meet you, glad my sister finally made a friend, and a good one too!” Shining armor called down the hall, tossing a wave at the boy before following his sister's path up the stairs.

Spike blinked a couple of times then grinned heartily.

Shining Armor likes me too!

Velvet proceeded to open the door to the garage, unlocking the car with her keyfob.

“Do you need help strapping in or do you got it, little man?” Velvet rubbed her hand into Spike’s hair, he batted it playfully and puffed out his chest.

“I got this.”

Spike ran to the car and opened the back door, climbing in and buckling himself in with little issue. Waiting for Mrs. Sparkle to get in, Spike glanced around the car. Before he was too nervous to do anything but look at his shoes and listen to Twilight talk. Twilight Velvet had a very nice car, maybe not as nice as Principal Celestia’s fast car, but this was still one of the nicest cars the little boy had the privilege to ride in.

Spike ran his hand across the leather upholstery, its smooth texture causing the boy to grin devilishly.

I want to have a car just like this when I grow up. Maybe even one like Celestia’s! A fast one with red racing stripes!

“What are you daydreaming about back there, Spike?” Velvet asked, looking back at him from the rearview mirror as she started the car.

Spike sat up straight and shook his head. “Nothing Mrs. Sparkle! I just really like your car.”

Velvet smiled and nodded, “Yes me too. Mr. Sparkle bought it for me for our anniversary a couple of years ago.”

“That was very nice of him.” Spike was looking out the window as they backed out of the driveway. He glanced up to the house, his heart aching as he waved goodbye to the warmest place he had ever been to.

“Spike, you are welcome over any time you want. Just let Celestia know and ask Twilight to tell me so we can make arrangements.”

Celestia’s home was across town so they had a little bit of a drive before Spike had to leave the comfort of Twilight Velvet’s company and return to the cold home he had become used to.

Celestia was not a horrible caretaker. She did everything in her power to make sure Spike was comfortable. He never wanted for anything, but he also didn’t want very much. Food and clothing were sufficient. It was just… empty. The one thing Celestia could not provide Spike with was the warmth of a loving family.

Spike didn’t tell Celestia much about his past besides him being without a family or a place to call home. His information was in a foster care system computer, and that consisted mainly of him being tossed from home to home, the families not satisfied with a quiet little boy who didn’t interact with others.

Celestia was the first person to not poke and prod at him for information. She just asked him simple questions and when he wouldn’t answer she'd leave him to his own.

I wish I had a family like Twilight’s. They didn’t question me like all those other families. They made me feel like I really belonged. To bad Mr. and Mrs. Sparkle already have two kids they love. They don’t want some stupid broken boy that—

“Spike, is everything alright? You seem to be scowling pretty hard back there. If the wind changes your face will get stuck like that.”

“W-what‽”

Velvet smiled, her eyes filled with mirth. “It’s a joke, Spike. It means that your face will get so used to being grumpy that you’ll forget how to smile.”

Spike frowned and then blinked, “I don’t want to be grumpy.”

“You don’t? I thought you liked being all frowny faced.” Velvet was trying not to smile but Spike could tell she was just messing with him.

The little boy fought a smile of his own as he crossed his arms across his chest. “I don’t like frowning.”

“Well that's good because we both know Twilight would pester you until you can’t remember how to frown.”

Spike was quiet for a few moments before he looked up at his best friend’s loving mother.

Could I talk to Mrs. Sparkle about my problems? She seems like she would listen and maybe help me with what I’m feeling. Is this jealousy? Am I jealous of Twilight Sparkle for having a loving, caring family? Something that I don’t have?

“Spike, love. Is everything alright? You can talk to me if you want to. I’m not going to pressure you.”

Spike opened his mouth to tell her everything that was weighing on his heart but his throat closed up. He snapped his lips closed and clenched his teeth.

The car was quiet for a few moments before Velvet spoke softly.

“Spike, whatever happened in the past, know that Twilight would never stop being your friend because of it. You’re the first person she’s ever wanted to bring over to dinner, or really talked about at all. She usually just comes home to tell us what she learned in school. It caught us all off guard when she came to us about wanting to invite you over.”

Spike blinked, the hurt in his eyes melting away into curiosity. Twilight doesn’t have any other friends either? She’s never brought someone over before me? Why me? Twilight’s so nice and caring. Smart and nerdy. How could the other kids not want to be her friend? Maybe they just aren’t cool enough to hang out with her. Yeah, that’s probably it. But why am I? Why do I get to hang out with her?

Spike clenched his tiny fists against his knees. Tears began to build up in his eyes as he stared down at his hands.

“You really are something special to have brought my daughter out of her shell, Spike,” Velvet said with a smile, occasionally glancing over to see the boy trying to keep himself together.

Slowly, several tears washed down the boy’s cheeks. Whether they were tears of joy at new friends or tears of sorrow at times long gone, Velvet wasn’t certain. What she was certain about was that after just one meal with the boy, her mind had been made up.

Slowing to a halt in front of Celestia’s home, Velvet killed the engine. “We’re here, Spike, are you ready to go in?”


I’d rather stay with you and Twilight, thought the boy. Spike nodded slightly, a smile crept across his lips. Then again, Twilight said she wants to hang out again, and we can’t do that if I get in trouble for being late getting home.

“Come on, Spike. I’ll walk you in.” Getting out of the car and walking around to the passenger’s side, Velvet opened the door for the little boy, extending her hand to him. Spike, having never lost his smile, reached out and took her hand.

Celestia looked out her front window, watching Twilight Velvet walk hand in hand with her charge as they approached the house.

“Welcome home, Spike,” Celestia said with a sense of regality as she opened the door. Even at home, the woman never lost her sense of poise or self control. “Did you have fun with Twilight?”

Spike ran the remainder of the way and hugged his caregiver tightly. “So much! Can I do this again? Can I, can I?”

“Well, I think that would be up to Mrs. Sparkle, don’t you, Spike? Go put your things away and get ready for bed, I’d like to speak with her.”

“Ok, Celly!” Spike dropped his backpack on the front room sofa and tossed his coat onto the armrest, running through the house towards his room.

“Celly?” Velvet asked with a sly grin.

“When I first took Spike in he would always call me ‘Miss.’ or ‘Principal’ or something formal. I could never quite get him to call me ‘mom,’ but I didn’t want him being overly formal with me. Celly seemed like a good compromise.” Velvet simply nodded in understanding.

“So how did the dinner with Spike go? He wasn’t too much trouble, I hope.”

“Oh not at all! It went swimmingly, Celestia. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Twilight get along so well with another child before. She’s taken to treating Spike like one of the family, and I don’t think Spike stopped smiling once all night. He and Twilight were like two peas in a pod.”

“That’s wonderful to hear, Mrs.Sparkle,” Celestia smiled kindly nodding as she crossed her arms over her chest. “I was quite worried he would stiffen up and be moody once he got to your home.”

“Please, call me Velvet, and no worries. Spike was wonderful to be around. Twilight had him talking almost the entire night and my husband, Night Light, made the poor thing almost split his sides laughing.”

“Really? That’s wonderful to hear, Velvet.” Celestia’s smile seemed a little forced, something Velvet caught on to quickly.

“Is everything alright? I know we’ve just met, but if there is anything I can help with it would be a pleasure of mine to assist.”

Celestia was quiet for a few moments before sighing, her hand lifting up to run her fingers through her hair.

“I just don’t think Spike is happy here. I’ve tried and tried to get him to open up to me, to smile. I’ve gotten him everything his heart could desire, but I can’t give him the stable life he needs. I can’t be home to nurture him, and raise him as my own. I…” Celestia sighed, her hand sliding down her face to rest over her mouth.

Twilight Velvet was silent, the words sinking in. She just wants Spike to have the best life possible, and it hurts her that she can’t provide that. How awful it must be to care about someone but not be able to give them what they need? How awful it must be, especially with a child you cherish? Oh, Shining and Twilight, what if me or Night were in this situation?

Velvet’s brow dipped low, her face contorting with confusion, a memory of the conversation from the previous day drifting across the front of her thoughts.

“Does that just mean he’s listed in a computer or something?”

“No darling, it means he was in the foster care system.”

“Foster care?”

“It’s… for young kids that are still looking for a mommy and daddy to take them in, to raise them. Foster care places them with loving adults who care about their wellbeing until they’re found by a loving family that will raise them as one of their own.”

“Can we afford to take in someone who doesn’t have a family?”

Celestia sighed once more before looking up at Velvet.

“It’s nothing for you to worry about. I’m very glad Spike and Twilight hit it off so well and that he enjoyed his time with you all. If you wouldn’t mind I’d be happy if they got to do it again sometime soon.”

Velvet nodded slowly, a smile curling onto her lips.

“Actually, there is something I’d like to talk to you about…” Velvet said, almost smiling.

***

“Shiny, can I talk to you for a minute?” The youngest sparkle had dipped her head into her older brother’s room as he was peeling the covers back to get into bed.

“What’s up, Twily?” Shining Armor sat down on his bed and patted the spot next to him.

Smarty Pants in tow, Twilight ran and jumped onto her brother's bed, causing them both to bounce and laugh in contentment.

“What do you think of Spike?”

Shining had lifted his left foot to rub his heel but he stopped to glance over at his little sister. She was sitting crossed legged, cuddling Smarty close and staring hard at the royal-blue carpet of his bedroom.

“Why do you ask, Twily? Is it important that I like him or something?”

Twilight was silent for a few minutes, something that caught her brother by surprise. They shared everything together, their thoughts and their dreams. They never kept secrets from one another, so why was she so silent now?

Shining wrapped his arms around his sister, pulling her into his lap and kissing the crown of her head, the silence continuing moments longer as the siblings enjoyed the comfort of one another's presence.

“I-um… I mean, I…”

“She’s thinking about having him come live with us,” Night Light said as he walked into their room.

“What mom talked to me about the other night?” Shining Armor asked his father.

“Yes,” Night Light replied. “Tonight was something of a test run, to see how he’d fit living with us.”

“Dad… are you serious about this?”

“Did… did you not like him?” Twilight asked.

“What? No, I did, I thought he was a pretty cool dude,” Shining said.

“So what’s the problem?” Twilight asked.

Shining’s eyes moved from his sister to his father. He wasn’t shocked when the look Night Light gave him told him that he was on his own for this little explanation. “Twily, look, I know you got a big heart, but what you’re talking about is adoption. It’s taking that little boy and making him part of our family, forever.”

“I know,” Twilight said as she hugged the doll tighter to her chest. “But he needs one, and he got along so well with everyone, and we all seem to like him.” The little girl was almost in tears now.

“Twily… Dad, little help?”

Night Light threw his hands up in the air. “When’s the last time anyone’s been able to say no to that face.”

He looked down to Twilight’s pouty face, knowing his father was right. They were all at the mercy of that face.

“It’s settled then, how about you run off to bed now Twilight, I’ll be in there to tuck you in soon.” Night Light smiled at his children, moving to lean against the door frame.

Twilight turned around and hugged her brother, her small arms squeezing him as tight as she could before kissing his cheek. “Thanks Shiny, goodnight B.B.B.F.F!”

“Night, L.S.B.F.F.” Shining said with a grin as he watched the little girl run out of the room. As soon as he was sure that she was out of earshot, he turned to his dad. “This isn’t going to become a thing, is it?”

Night Light shook his head no. “Oh no. This is a one time thing. I know it’s a lot to get used to, but,” he paused and looked down, smiling a little, “it’s hard to say no to someone so pure of heart.”

“Yeah,” Shining Armor replied. “I know what you mean.”

“Give it a chance, Shining. I know it might be weird for a while but you saw the smile on Twilight’s face. I’ve never seen her so happy, especially about something not book related. Also, Spike’s a good kid, he’s just had a hard life.” Night Light grinned broadly as he walked over to his oldest son and pulled him into a playful headlock. “Plus now I’ll have someone to tell all my jokes to since you’re too old to laugh with your old man.”

Shining tried to fight off his father, laughing loudly as Night Light used his free arm to tickle the younger boy's ribs.

“D-d-dad! Sta-stop it! I can’t ta-take anymore,” Shining Armor said, laughter rumbling through his form. “I give, I give! I’ll laugh at your terrible jokes. Just pl-please stop!”

Night Light laughed loudly, his arms released the young boy as he stood up. “It’s going to be a bit of adjustment for all of us. No one expects it to go easy, if it even happens at all. But we’re all here for each other. Our family isn’t changing, just growing.”

“I know,” Shining said with a smile.

“And this doesn’t mean we love you or Twily any less.”

“I KNOW,” Shining replied, rolling his eyes.

Night Light chuckled as he placed his hand on the lightswitch. Shining took of his shirt and laid down in bed. He pulled up the blanket and nodded to his dad to shut the light off.

“Goodnight, son.”

“Night, Dad,” Shining said with a smile.

Night Light left the room, closing the door behind him before making his way down the hall to his daughter's room. The main light was off, leaving a small desk light softly illuminating the room.

“Knock knock,” Night softly rapped his knuckles against the door frame.

Twilight looked up from her book, a smile resting on her face. “Hi daddy.”

“Aren’t you supposed to be getting ready for bed?”

“I am! I just wanted to read up on some of the stuff Spike and I talked about today so we can talk some more tomorrow. It’s so cool that he knows so much about geology and science. I just can’t wait to—”

Night Light walked over and ran his hand through the little girl’s hair. “All of that can wait for the morning. It’s bed time little girl.”

“Ahh, dad, can’t I—”

“Nope, to bed. After all, you can’t learn if you’re all tired, now can you?”

“No, I guess not,” Twilight pouted as she got up and slid into bed in her comfortable pajamas.

Night Light tucked the little girl in and kissed her on the forehead. “Goodnight, Twily.”

“Night, Daddy.” Twilight’s smile proved to be infectious as Night Light turned the light off in the room. He closed his daughter’s door, leaving just a crack, just the way she liked it.

“Love you, Twily,” Night Light said to himself as he walked to his room. A lot would depend on what his wife said when she got home, but he had a funny feeling that things would work out. After all, with a daughter that sweet, how could it go wrong?

***

“No, that’s an igneous rock, not a sedimentary rock!” Twilight all but shouted.

“Twilight, don’t be ridiculous. Look at the coloring! Not to mention the weight of it.” Spike rolled his eyes and held out the small rocks in his palm.

The two kids were both sitting on the floor of Twilight’s room, looking over various minerals that made up Spike’s meager collection and trying to identify them. A playful argument had broken out between them as they seemed to each take opposing sides for each rock in the collection.

“I’m telling you, the book I read yesterday said that’s an igneous rock.”

“You have it backwards, Twilight.”

“Bet on it?” Twilight asked with a smile.

“Dessert for tonight?” Spike asked back with a grin.

"Twilight, Spike, come on downstairs now! Hurry up or you won’t get your snacks before your father takes them!"

The two quickly clambered to their feet and made a beeline for the door. With her longer legs, Twilight made it to the stairs first, but she stopped at the top, kicking the hamper out of the way to let him pass. As she watched the green-haired boy run past her she thought, I can’t believe it’s only been a week, but I already can’t remember a time without you, Spike.

Somehow, in a way she couldn’t explain, their family now felt… complete.

Rounding the corner to the kitchen, Velvet held out a bowl of ice-cream to each child with a smile on her face. Twilight and Spike each hungrily inhaled their treat, complete with chocolate syrup and sprinkles.

“Alright now you two, off to bed. You’ve both got school in the morning.” Night Light’s firm yet friendly tone managed to get the point across as both kids ran back up the stairs. Twilight ran straight to her room, Spike hesitating in front of the door just past hers.

I… I still can’t believe it. My own room. Spike thought to himself with a smile. Settling into bed, Night Light entered quietly after him.

“Goodnight, Spike. Sleep tight and sweet dreams.”

“Okay… dad?”

Night Light chuckled. “If you want.” Leaning down he kissed Spike on the forehead before getting up and walking to the door. Turning out the light, he hesitated before closing the door until just a sliver of light remained shining through from the hallway.

After several minutes of tossing and turning, Spike’s attention was drawn to the doorway. A gentle creak sounded through the room, amplified by the silence surrounding the rest of the house. Twilight gently tip-toed into the room, clutching something to her chest.

“Spike? Are you awake?”

Spike rolled over to face Twilight, nodding his head but not saying a word.

“I… umm… here.” Twilight tenderly reached out, handing Smarty Pants to the boy. “Goodnight, Spike,” she said with a smile, before backing out of his room.

Spike looked at the mismatched button eyes on the stuffed pony before clutching her to his chest and drifting off to a sound sleep with dreams of his new family filling his head.

Author's Note:

A big thanks to everyone involved with this story! Oh, and to those of you who actually paid attention to my blog post promising this to be released like... a week or so ago... sorry. :twilightblush:

I had planned on releasing it in parts instead of all at once, which was part of the delay. Then there were some issues getting Ch2 out. But it's here now soo... yay! :pinkiehappy:

Comments ( 95 )
IMN
IMN #1 · Dec 21st, 2015 · · ·

As close to perfection as it could possibly get.

OH THE FEELS!!! SO. MUCH. FEELS!!!:pinkiesad2:

I Loved this story! Very Heart warming!:heart::pinkiesmile::raritystarry::heart:

Omgg... godd work god awesome

Gonna be honest, I love this story. The way you set the story up from start to finish is outstanding. Not to mention the feels are so intense and heartwarming.

Definitely a favourite :twilightsmile::heart:

~Lunatone

Cry like a baby now:fluttercry:

All of my Yes. All of my Yesses(esses). Every last one. I'm certainly adding this to as many groups as I can.

This story is the drill that will pierce the feature box heavens.

Everyone, thank you so much for all the positive support. I'm going to be honest, this story means a lot to me. I cried, I got frustrated, I even got to the point where I was terrified for Dd to even post (and i almost quit) it but I'm so glad he did.(Which is why it was late being posted) This was an amazing project to work on and I couldn't have asked for better friends to go along for the ride.
But all credit goes to Deputy cause he's one awesome Duck, and totally 20% cooler than me.

6754370

This was such a fun ride to help you with. I was proud to lend a hand, but you shortchange yourself far to much.

Great job, Moonlight Sparkle. This story would not have even been conceived of without you! You should be proud of this.

Relentless dadjokes Night Light is my new favorite Night Light.

6754339 It already has been featured! Huzzah! :pinkiehappy:

I've re-read this about three times tonight. This is the most deserving thing to hit the Featured Box in weeks... and the first story that I've enjoyed this much in a year at least. Everything is pitch-on—even Night Light's Dad Jokes. Though I did notice one line very near the end of Velvet's that was not in quotes... see if you can find it.:raritywink:

All in all, amazing. Well done writers, editor, and pre-reader. Congratulations all around.:twilightblush:

6754615
The herbivore joke was pretty good.

6754732
Found it and fixed it! Thank you so much! Hearing this sort of feedback from you, along with everyone else is just... mind blowing. I can't believe the support this story is getting! It means so much, thank you! :twilightsmile:

6754615
Yasssssssssss, Night Light was my favorite! I spent wayyyyy too long trying to come up with the right "Dad Jokes" but it was totally worth it. :pinkiehappy:

6754370
Moonlit, I should be thanking you. This was our colab but if you hadn't found the art and helped get this started I'm not sure it ever would've happened. You kept us on track (mostly anyways :rainbowwild: ) and so many of the scenes that gave me adorabetus were all you. Thank you. The credit is yours. :raritywink:

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Thank you so much! Seeing that said, especially as the FIRST reaction we got to the story? Best. Thing. Ever!!! :pinkiehappy:

6754898 this is beautiful the feels are going to overload my computer boom well I managed to avoid the overload but I think I'm going to need a new pride it gave out from the feels

Just simply amazing. Made my day.

This gets all of my feels. :)

Is it weird I started going all Spike when someone talks about geology?

Ummmmm... Excuse me? Can you please stop cramming the feels down into my throat?

100th like! This story really deserves it. Nice job! :moustache:

What a dad. They're so cute, all of them, too!:derpytongue2: It seems there is something magical afoot. What is this alternate universe, then?

Might day grant you strength, slumber as you do this night. / Another dawn shall rise to ring in / the sound of joy, each heart basked in warmth.
Awaiting further releases.:fluttershysad:

My heart hurts. This story brought me to happy tears. As someone who has watched the foster care system in Canada fail many families (I'm not a foster kid, but it's failed a few of my former friends) and it breaks my heart every time. This had me crying because the system worked well in this story.

Thanks for making me cry. Thank you.

IMN

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I spotted the mistake the Descendent pointed out later, though I was too overwhelmed to actually mention it.

Haven't read it yet but its probably about the kid being gay and so everyone feels sorry for him and now he gets free cash.

Wow! What more can I say but that this was extremely well written, well paced, and super super cute and feel inducing. Just amazing. Not overly dramatic, angsty, or cute for cutes sake, juuuust right. The best short story I've read in a long time!

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I'm glad to help. Also check for the one time that you didn't capitalize "Sparkle" as a family name in second chapter.:raritywink:

6756363 Night Light is dad-as-buck.

THIS IS SOOO GOOD LIKE OMG

A few minor spelling errors here and there. Also sometimes the dialogue/inner monologues seemed somewhat weirdly structured for Twi and Spike, like they weren't how you'd expect a ten or sub-ten-year-old to speak.

Other than those minor gripes, I liked it. Thumbs up from me. :trollestia:

I AM LOOKING UPON THE TALE. IS IT ADEQUATE? MAYBE. AM LOOKING GOOD FOR THE PART OF IT.

That was simply wonderful.

Very good story, and thanks to TD for the heads up about it.

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Sir, that is just uncalled for. Unless you have positive critique or valid criticism, don't make ludicrous claims on a story you haven't read.

Be nice.

~Lunatone

Mah feels. ;.;

10/10 would shed liquid pride again.:fluttercry:

Sir, that was beautiful. Hit me right in the feels hard. Truly a worthy read.

Not one for the human alts. but this one certainly touched my heart.

Well Done :pinkiehappy:

Almost made me tear up towards the end there, well done! I love this story!

AMAZING! :pinkiehappy: this story conveys emotion so strongly, I had to stop myself from shedding a few tears at work. (I will let them loose later as this story is added to my mental catalog of stories I can't forget.):twilightsmile:

This is an amazingly written story. It's fairly believable. Honestly, the only thing that gave me pause (and this is a slight one) was how adult Twilight and Spike sounded in their thoughts. I mean, I could see Twilight, maybe, especially just having her super smart family to talk to and books to read, but with Spike in Kindergarten I find his level of eloquence a small strech, even if he was the smartest kindergartner ever.

However, that isn't that bad of a thing, and this story sparkles with emotions and is so captivating. It's certainly one of my favorites that I have ever read, from any fandom. You've caught everyone's personalities and voice really well. You both deserve, at the very least, a blue ribbon of achievement.

So, yeah. Keep writing. You're super good.

TS

My heart.....

Great story. Definitely a different take on the family dynamic.

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knowledge of geology makes for a well grounded person. and I'm not talking a lot of schist here.

Excellent story, a joy to read.

Yeah, that was pretty great. On top of seeing more of the Sparkle parents, we see a vulnerable and maternal Celestia torn between her job and her young charge. An excellent touch, to be sure.

Props to the story, and another thanks to my favorite raven for sending me this way. This hit Christmas in just the right place. Immediately to the Favorite pile.

6756198 You, sir, are horribly, horribly mistaken.

D'aww, so much cuteness. Are you planning on making a series out of this?

This was sweet and well written. But OH! those "Dad" jokes! They were painful!

"A young, ten-year-old Twilight Sparkle". Having both here seems a bit redundant. By simply telling us that she's ten years old, you convey her age and her youth in one go.

This stoy is so sweet!:heart::pinkiesad2::fluttercry::twilightsmile::heart:

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