• Published 5th Dec 2011
  • 38,966 Views, 1,684 Comments

Flying High, Falling Hard - Soundslikeponies

Twilight, Dash, and Spitfire have a trainwreck of a relationship.

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Chapter 14: After the Heat Dies Down

After the Heat Dies Down

Flying High, Falling Hard by soundslikeponies

Twilight woke up on the couch. First light was filtering in from the windows, giving the room an orange glow, and there was the sound of hoofsteps. Twilight sat up and rubbed her eyes, looking to the source of the sound to see Dash walking towards the door.

“Where’re you going?” Twilight mumbled sleepily.

Dash froze and turned around, chuckling nervously. "Sorry... I have to go help the weather team out today. I tried to let myself out quietly so you could get some more sleep." Dash covered a yawn with her hoof. "Celestia knows, I could use more sleep."

"Will you be back soon?" Twilight asked, playing with her mane. "Since Spike is still in Canterlot, it can get really quiet around here."

"Hey come on, Twi, don't get too clingy," Dash joked.

Twilight looked down at the sofa. "Oh. Sorry..."

"Don't worry about it. I'll try and finish up quickly for the day. I'll even drop by during my lunch break and bring us something to eat, how's that?" Dash said, giving her a reassuring smile. "We just have to start some prep work for a storm coming up, so it should be a short day."

Twilight gave her a weak smile. "Alright, I'll see you at lunch." She stumbled up off the couch and walked over to grab a couple books from the shelves. "I've been needing a new project. I guess I'll try and find something today that I can start on to keep me busy."

Twilight saw Dash pause in the doorway and watch her browsing the shelves for a moment, before she left and closed the door. Twilight let out a sigh and looked at the shelves of books in front of her—a normally exciting prospect that didn’t seem very glamorous at the moment.

Dash unfolded her wings and, with a mighty flap, took off into the sky. She skimmed along the top of the library tree, her wings rustling the leaves on its branches as she flew up over it and towards the weather center.

Ever since the first date they shared where they had fallen asleep together, Twilight had been slowly getting more and more attached to her, never wanting to leave her side. It had been such a long time since she last slept in her own bed. Every time she left Twilight would put on a sad puppy look that just killed her.

Dash approached the weather center. All the weather pegasi stood outside it, chatting before the day's work. One particular blonde with a slate coat spotted her flying in, and waved. Dash landed next to her. Ditzy Doo was probably the only pony she really talked to on the weather team. Mostly due to her having the misfortune of being paired up with her.

"Hi Dash!" The mare had great golden eyes—but one of them often drifted away from where she was looking, usually when she got excited or nervous.

"Hey, Ditzy," Dash said, giving her a weak smile; she hadn't talked to the mare for a while.

"What'sa matter, Rainbow? You sound kind of burned out. I thought you’d be happy after winning that competition."

Dash smirked and shook her head. "It's nothing really. I'm just glad it's a short work day."

"Yep—well, not for me. I have a shift over at the post office after this. I had to take a second job. They haven't been giving me as many shifts here since that one time I accidentally made lightning hit the old apple orchard windmill..." Ditzy trailed off, her voice losing most of its enthusiasm as she spoke.

"I'll see if I can give you some of mine; it pays better than being a mail mare, and I need some more practice time anyway."

Ditzy's face brightened up. "Oh, thank you so much! You have no idea how much that helps!"

She wasn’t lying when she said she needed practice time. Despite winning the Best Young Flier competition, she had gotten much less flight practice done in the past few days than she usually did.

Dash smiled, despite her mood. "Don't worry about it, like I said it's nothing. I don't need the bits." She tried to stay nonchalant and cool, but a small tell-tale blush gave her away.

Dash and Ditzy quieted as the lead weather pegasus walked, called for their attention, and began to explain what they needed to get done that day.

A mountain of books surrounded Twilight. The shelves nearby were empty, their contents a part of the haphazardly-piled stacks that surrounded her. She skimmed through the pages of a book—one that she had already read twice. At this point she wasn't sure if there was a single book in the library she hadn't read. It would be a good idea to order some new books for the library next time she went by the post office.

Her face lit up with an idea, and she got up, knocking over her stacks of books while doing so, and walked over to her desk, levitating the quill out of its holder and dipping it in a small jar of ink.

She began to write on a piece of parchment. Her magic glowed around the quill, its movements swift and nimble from years of practiced writing, the ink flowing out into a fine cursive writing that was impeccably neat. Twilight placed the quill in its holder, and sat back to admire her work.

Dear Princess Celestia,

I'm sorry this letter isn't about what you requested. I'm still working on that and trying to figure out how to describe what it is I’ve learned from being with Rainbow Dash. I just wanted to write this letter to ask how things have been in Canterlot. We didn't get a chance to speak at the Best Young Flier competition, and I just wanted to let my parents know that I'm doing well, and that I'm having a great time in Ponyville.

Your faithful student,
Twilight Sparkle

Twilight rolled the letter up, tying a red ribbon around it with a self-satisfied smile. Now I'll just get Spike to send this off to Princess Celestia and I should get a reply pronto!

Twilight froze, remembering that Spike was still in Canterlot, and it would take days for her letter to arrive by postal. Her only idea to fill the time, ruined. Twilight trotted out the door to the post office with her head hung low. I may as well order those books and send this letter off now, she thought, miserably. With any luck, she would run into someone she knew on the way there.

Spitfire stood in front of the Weather Center, taking a deep breath to steel herself. The three stallions in Cloudsdale had said Rainbow was a weather pegasus, so she figured the weather center was the first place to start looking for her.

Spitfire stepped in through the double doors into a small lobby. The walls were a plain white, with a light gray floor, and an orange mare sitting behind the reception desk looked up as Spitfire entered.

The receptionist’s eyes lit up with stars as she recognized Spitfire, and she let out a gasp, raising her hooves up to her cheeks. "Oh my gosh! Are you Spitfire?"

Spitfire groaned under her breath and put on a forced smile. "Yep, that's me!"

"Will you sign this poster I have? I'm a huge fan!" The receptionist dug through her drawers as she spoke, rattling their contents. "Ah-hah!" She cried out, finding what she was looking for. She placed a pen and a Wonderbolts poster of Soarin’ striking a gallant pose on his hind legs with his chest puffed out. His name was across the top of the poster like the cover for some cheap action movie, and he was giving the camera a dashing smile. Spitfire looked at the receptionist and raised an eyebrow, smirking.

The receptionist blushed and looked off to the side. "It's the only thing I have here," she muttered.

Spitfire picked up the pen and spun the poster around, scrawling her signature onto it. She spun the poster back around and pushed it toward the receptionist.

“Thank you,” the receptionist mumbled, taking the poster. Spitfire placed the pen back on the counter.

"Anyway,” Spitfire said. “I was wondering if a pony by the name of Rainbow Dash worked—" She was cut off by the door opening, and a familiar boisterous laugh filling the lobby.

"Oh man!” Rainbow Dash laughed, holding her stomach and talking to Ditzy. “I can't believe Cumulus actually took that bet! Such bad luck on his part too! I don't think I've ever cleared clouds faster than that! Easiest ten bits I've ever..." Dash trailed off as she noticed Spitfire smiling at her from across the room. "Spitfire? What are you doing in Ponyville?"

"Oh you know... stuff," Spitfire replied.

Dash bounded up to her excitedly. "Oh man this is awesome! We should totally hang out while you're here." Dash slung a hoof around Spitfire's shoulder, making Spitfire grateful for the way her coat's color obscured her blush.

"S-sure. Listen—uh, I've been meaning to ask you something." Spitfire watched the grey pony Dash had been talking to skip past them and down the hallway, her eyes looking in opposite directions as she skipped happily along. She turned back to see Rainbow Dash leaning forward expectantly.

"Ask me what?" Dash asked.

Spitfire hesitated, opening and closing her mouth trying to make words come out as Dash watched with a bit of confusion.

“Hello?” Dash asked in a sing-song voice. “Equestria to Spitfire.”

"I, uh, well, the thing I wanted to ask you about was...” Spitfire gulped, trying to swallow the lump in her throat. “Your sonic rainboom!" Spitfire blurted a little too loudly. "I wanted to know how you did it."

"Oh, that? That’s easy.” Dash said, removing her hoof from around Spitfire’s shoulder and moving to stand in front of her. “The first step is to start somewhere really high up, and then you go into a dive to gain speed, and then there's this thing, and it’s like... uh, whatcha call it..."Dash tapped her hoof on the ground, thinking. “A sonic barrier!” Dash finally remembered, a proud look adorning her face as she did so. “So there’s this barrier and it will slow you down a bit, but if you manage to go fast enough, then you bust through it and there’s a sonic rainboom.”

Spitfire looked at her blankly. “So you dive until you hit a barrier...”

“Yep,” Dash said, grinning and nodding.

“And then you go faster...”


Spitfire had to pause and retrace what Dash said, thinking that maybe she had missed something. “... That’s it?”

“Uh...” Dash scratched the back of her neck. “Well it sounds kind of simple when you put it that way, but yeah?”

"... You're kidding," Spitfire said, looking at her in disbelief. Rainbow Dash shook her head, completely certain in her answer.

"But what about the angle of descent!? Your wing spread?" Spitfire exclaimed, seeing the look of confusion grow on Dash's face. “Don’t you keep track of those?”

"My what-now?" Dash asked, with a puzzled look.

Spitfire dragged a hoof down her face, groaning. "How can you not know these things? Do you just go up there and wing it?" Spitfire shouted.

"Yeah, pretty much," Dash answered succinctly.

Spitfire's mouth hung open, her left eye twitching.

"I've always been terrible with that theory stuff,” Dash said. “But if we get a chance to go out flying some time I'd definitely be able to show you."

Spitfire's earlier confusion was forgotten, and she nodded her head in agreement at the idea of them flying. A light blush returned to her cheeks. The two of them together, alone. Even if it wasn't a date, she could still pretend.

"Are you free for lunch?" Spitfire asked.

"I'm meeting up with Twilight for lunch. How about later tonight?" Dash asked.

Spitfire’s delusions came crashing down the moment Twilight’s name left Dash’s lips. "Oh... sure, I'll see you then." The Wonderbolt couldn't help but let out a sigh. It had really been starting to feel like there was a good atmosphere between them. Spitfire turned to walk away, trying not to let her disappointment show too badly.

"So...” Dash said, rubbing the back of her neck. “Six o'clock? In front of this building?"

Spitfire stopped and turned to her, giving her a weak smile. "Yeah, sure. Six would be fine," she answered, and trudged out the door. She heard Dash call after her one last time as she went out the door.

“Wait!” Dash shouted. "Was it something I said?"

She would let that one go unanswered.

Twilight sat on the new couch in the library, thinking about how she really needed to get out more. She had most certainly run into lots of ponies on her way to the post office, but she didn't know a single one of them. Ponyville was such a small town, so how were there so many ponies whose faces she had never seen before? She heard the door open, and shot up out of the couch a little too fast and tumbled over her own hooves, falling in a heap on the floor. She looked at the door to see Rainbow Dash snickering in the doorway, holding back her laughter with a hoof over her mouth.

Twilight blushed and got up off the floor and rushed over to Dash. Twilight leaned in and gave her a quick kiss, which she returned.

"I was thinking of going somewhere for lunch," Dash said. A wing spread to wrap around Twilight. "Wanna come with?"

"I think I'd like that," Twilight answered, smiling.

Dash lead the way, walking out of the library with her wing holding Twilight close. Dash’s silken feathers pressed Twilight against her side, and Twilight could feel the power in her wings, giving her a feeling of comfort and safety.

The sky was blue with a few white wisps strewn across it. Large, gray clouds rolled in the distance at the edge of the sky. Twilight stared at them. Dash followed her gaze.

"The weather team over in Fillydelphia has been working on setting up a real downpour for us," Dash commented. “‘Spring showers bring April flowers,’ and all that."

Twilight giggled at her butchering the phrase. But her smile faded slightly, as she noticed that mixed in with the greeting smiles most ponies had, there were a few who threw scornful looks their way.

She snuggled up against the pegasus as they walked through town, smiling, despite the looks. Dash however, was looking around and returning each dirty look thrown their way with a dirty look of her own.

When they arrived at the diner, the place was packed. Baristas scrambled to get orders out during the lunchtime rush hour. Twilight and Rainbow Dash took a seat next to each other at a table outside, and they each picked up a menu, looking through it while they waited for service.

"Oh man,” Rainbow Dash said, looking through the appetizers. “You'll never believe who dropped by the weather center today."

"Oh?" Twilight said.

"Spitfire showed up!" Dash said as she set the menu down. "She wanted to ask me how to do a sonic rainboom!"

“That’s... amazing!” Twilight said, smiling for her. “Was she there to see you?”

“Yeah!” Dash said, grinning ear to ear. “I think she was really impressed by my flying up in cloudsdale!”

“Wait...” Twilight said, looking suspiciously up from her menu at Dash. "You didn't actually tell her about the sonic rainboom, did you?" Twilight saw the guilty expression Dash had and groaned. "You can't just go around telling everypony how to perform your legendary trick! It wouldn't be nearly as special if everypony could do it."

"Well, I wasn’t really able to tell her how to do it, but I told her I would show her it later tonight."

Twilight groaned putting a hoof to her face.

"What?” Dash asked. “I’m getting a chance to fly with the captain of the Wonderbolts! What more could any pegasus possibly ask for?"

Twilight sighed and shook her head. "Well, it's ultimately your decision, but I don’t think you should tell her how to do a sonic rainboom. That's your trick, and it only remains your trick as long as you keep it to yourself." She stopped talking, seeing a stallion waiting to take their orders. "Oh, sorry! I'll have the cream of cauliflower and the rye bread." Twilight handed the menu on the table to the waiter, who turned to Dash.

"Carrot soup, and some hay fries," Dash told him, kicking back and flipping her mane.

The waiter nodded to both of them, and walked away. Twilight gave Dash a dirty look out of the corner of her eye.

"What?" Dash asked, spotting the look.

"We go out somewhere to eat,” Twilight said. “And you still get hay fries?"

"Hey, the hay fries they make here are really good, and I like hay fries!" Dash said, defending her order. "And don't change the subject! We were talking about this whole trick thing.” Dash put her hooves on the table in front of her. "I kind of agree with what you're saying and all, but I just don't know how I'm supposed to keep her interested if I don't have some awesome trick to show off." Rainbow Dash crossed her hooves and lay her head on the table, letting out a sigh.

“Just... strongly consider what I’ve said,” Twilight advised, taking a sip of her soup.

“I’ll keep it in mind,” Dash replied while looking at the surface of her carrot soup with a small frown. “But if I don’t show her that trick, there’s no way Spitfire’s going to find me interesting.”

“I know you can do lots of other neat tricks,” Twilight said, reaching across the table and touching Dash’s hoof. “I know you’re more than just a one trick pony.”

“Yeah,” Dash said, a smile finding its way to her lips. “I guess I’ll just wait and see.”

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