• Published 31st Dec 2017
  • 423 Views, 6 Comments

I Think I Love You - Crescent Minor

Rainbow Dash never thought she'd be spending this Hearth's Warming party with the Lord of Chaos.

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Isn't That What Life Is Made Of?

The party was coming to life in the grand hall below. The layers of music and comfortable, glad voices were rising to meet the blue pegasus, who had just arrived through a small, high window. She turned and shoved it closed, keeping a tight seal against the whistling cold wind. The atmosphere inside washed over her coat, warm and smelling of food and pine, relieving the freezing temperature. Rainbow Dash looked over the crowd of ponies below, gathering at the tables of food, around the gramophone, and a ring of amazed, upturned eyes had formed around the massive, glittering tree. Garlands of green pine and red ribbons festooned the walls, housing that centerpiece well. Twilight’s crystal castle looked decorative every day of the year, but even so, this was beautiful.

The ponies playing, talking and eating below were so at ease, thinking only of the meaning of the season. Such a peaceful atmosphere … it would be all the funnier when she broke it.

Rainbow chuckled to herself in sheer anticipation. She’d wanted to prank the Hearth’s Warming party last year, but her uncle Blaze had been in Ponyville for the first time in a while, and she hadn’t wanted to miss her opportunity to spend time. But this year, she was free agent, and a whole extra year of buildup would make this even more unexpected. Her saddlebags held a great many potential pranking tools. Firecrackers, balloons, paint, standard stuff. Even some less-standard stuff, like a hollow piñata and hot sauce, were in there somewhere. She wasn’t sure exactly what she wanted to do, so she’d brought enough to keep her options open. She’d play it by ear, see what this party needed as it went on.

But, first things first. Rainbow tilted her wings and circled downward, aiming for a clear bit of floor near the base of the tree. Her hooves clicked on the crystal as she landed, and she approached the large pile of shiny wrapped boxes. She’d left it a little late, but one present needed delivering.

Rainbow pushed aside a couple of record sleeves and pulled out a wrapped box. Hidden underneath the yellow tissue paper was a folded-up welcome mat embroidered with a picture of a sour-looking black cat and the words ‘No Visitors on Nightmare Night’. The tag read ‘Fluttershy’ in Rainbow’s heavy hoofwriting. She’d snapped the decoration up moons ago, knowing it was the one bit of Nightmare Night décor that her friend was sure to use. Rainbow trotted up to the tree, and placed her present on the pile.

Immediately to her left, somepony plonked down a large, rounded box; it wasn’t ‘wrapped’ so much as it had paper taped all over it, several different patterns, with bows and stickers hanging off of random places. It looked like whoever had made that mess only had a vague idea of what the point was of decorating a gift in the first place. As she was staring at it, she distinctly heard a scraping sound from somewhere inside, and she flinched back with real concern. “Huh? Is something alive in – oh.” She’d turned to ask the pony who placed the box, only to see it was no pony.

The lanky draconequus smiled at her easily. “Oh, don’t worry, it doesn’t need to breathe.” His hoof and claw decided to leave the ground as he spoke. “So, enjoying your Hearth’s Warming?”

She did not return his smile; if he was at this party, she had to be on guard. Rainbow glared at him and beat her wings, rising to his eye level, and said, “Listen here, Discord. You’d just better not ruin this party, too. No goop monster, no bringing all the food to life and making it attack us, none of that. Understand?”

Discord did not react with any sort of fear or submission like he was supposed to, but waved her off with his talon. “Psh. Calm yourself. I won’t entirely disrupt your evening. I have a few little things in mind, nothing that will bring the castle down.” He twisted in the air and started to glide away.

“What – it – hold on!” Rainbow darted around in front of him. “I’m serious! No tricks this time. Can’t you just hang out like a normal, uh, non-pony?”

Discord smirked. “What makes it a party if it isn’t fun? And, hmm …” He turned his attention to her saddlebags, and raised an eyebrow. “You’re not really one to talk. Are those firecrackers?”

“Huh? Are you – don’t look through my bags!”

He laughed at her angry face, and said, “Oh, you’re very amusing, but I wouldn’t order me around. Just stay out of my way.” With that, he snapped his claws and magicked himself away to Celestia knew where.

Rainbow hung in the air for a moment, gritting her teeth, before mumbling, “No. No, no, he’s not doing this again. This is the night he doesn’t ruin!” She circled higher, scanning the party for the one pony who might be able to control that force of idiocy. For a minute, she looked futilely over the main crowd again and again … until a bit of yellow and pink caught her eye, off on its own on the upper balcony overlooking the hall. Feeling a little stupid for trying to locate Fluttershy in the crowd of all places, she flapped her way up to the overhanging ledge, mentally preparing to explain the problem.

Rainbow alighted next to Fluttershy on the upper walkway. Up above the party, the noise was gentler, echoing around them somewhat quietly rather than hitting the ear directly. It felt a little too isolated to Rainbow, but she understood why Fluttershy decided to stay up here. The other pegasus was sitting on the floor, holding in her forelegs a … Rainbow wasn’t sure what it was called, she was no good with land animals. Grey mini-bear? Whatever it was called, its left hind leg was encased in plaster, probably broken. Fluttershy set a plush blanket on the cold crystal floor and made a few adjustments with her wingtips.

“Okay, you’re going down on a nice bed, just hold on …” Rainbow heard a little of her calming patter to the animal as she approached, and found herself smiling. Fluttershy leaned down to, very slowly, set her mini-bear on its right side. Rainbow came up next to her as she straightened up. “There you go, Nimble.”


Fluttershy started. “Oh! Hello, Rainbow.”

Rainbow looked down at the tiny long-tailed bear, and saw it was glaring at her suspiciously, propping itself up on its front legs to show her its teeth. She drew one hoof back to make sure she wasn’t in nipping range. “Uh … you brought one of your animals to the party?”

“Oh, Nimble can’t be on his own yet. I keep telling him he needs to stay still and make sure his tibia is healing correctly for a few days, and then it’ll be safe for him to walk around on supports, but – Nimble, no …”

Rainbow looked from Fluttershy to the mini-bear. It was making some awkward efforts to stand, half-dragging itself away from them, ears pulled back. She put her hoof on its back, pressing just firmly enough to make it lie back down. It complied under protest, giving annoyed chitters. Fluttershy stroked between its ears, though it still looked angry. “I’m sorry, Nimble, but you have to stay.”

“That, uh, that little bear seems kinda … what?”

Fluttershy had chuckled. “He’s a raccoon, Rainbow Dash. But ‘little bear’ is also true in a way. They’re in the same sub-order, you know.”

“Heh. Okay. That raccoon seems kinda ticked off.”

She nodded, still stroking its ruffled fur. “Yes, Nimble’s not used to ponies. Or being inside. He’s been a bit upset the whole time he’s stayed with me. Pinkie brought him in after he accidently pulled a garbage can on top of himself outside Sugarcube Corner. The little guy wanted to eat the expired candy they threw away.”

It raised its head and growled, prompting Fluttershy to stop touching it. Rainbow’s muzzle wrinkled. “Nimble’s not very grateful.”

Fluttershy turned to her, frowning. “Rainbow Dash, most animals can’t understand ‘grateful,’” she began with some reproach. “All he knows is that he’s in pain and he’s not where he wants to be. We can’t be upset with him for that, can we?”

Rainbow shifted, a little uncomfortable at the gentle disapproval, especially so because she still thought Nimble was being a little jerk. “Uh … yeah, I guess. But, anyway …” She looked Fluttershy square in the eye and said, “Do you know Discord’s planning to pull some prank at the party?”

“Mm hmm.”

“Exactly, so – wait …” She blinked. “Why are you so okay about that? He always ruins stuff!”

“He doesn’t always –”

Rainbow huffed. “Fluttershy!”

“Okay, maybe sometimes. But I made an agreement with him this time: he’ll clear anything funny he wants to do with me first. No castle-crashing this time.”

“… Oh. Well, I guess that’s better …” She faltered, trying to find her vehemence again. “But … but he won’t be clearing it with me! I was going to do some cool stuff, but what if he messes it up? What if I swap the Hearth’s Warming carol records with some DJ Pon3 albums –”

“You brought DJ Pon3 albums?”

“Well, duh. But what if I do that, and he’s already made the player grow legs and walk away? Or worse, what if everypony sees us both doing pranks and thinks I’m copying him?”

Fluttershy, though still smiling at her, also raised any eyebrow. “So what you’re really worried about is him spoiling your fun?”

“I – well, now that I know he’s not going to summon the Smooze, yeah!” Rainbow retorted.

Fluttershy suddenly brightened, so much so that her wings lifted. “I know! Why don’t you two come up with something together?”

Rainbow’s ears dropped. “Uh … I don’t know, ‘Shy …” she replied evasively, lying. The truth was that she did know; she very, very much did not want to work with that crazy draconequus. How could anypony enter a partnership, however temporary, with such an uncommitted, off-the-wall weirdo? It wasn’t like working with Pinkie; she had hidden depths of reliability and cared about everypony else under her random airheaded exterior. With Discord, the conceited, wild first impression was exactly what he was.

“Well, let’s see how he feels about it.” Fluttershy turned away, and said to some empty space next to them, “Um, Discord?”

A flash of white light ignited, and he popped into existence, towering over them. Rainbow shot to her hooves. “Gah! What? Were you listening the whole time?”

Discord rolled his eyes and smirked at her. “No, no, I just heard my name.” His haughty smirk softened into real cheer when he looked to the other pegasus. “Yes, Fluttershy?”

She looked up at him and began, “I know you’re working on a good joke for the party …”

“Oh, yes!” The tip of his tail waved in excitement.

“But since Rainbow wants to prank everypony, too, I thought maybe you could collaborate!”

His tail went still, and confusion twisted his expression. “Co … labortate …”

Rainbow leapt on his hesitation; maybe this one thing, they could agree on. “If he doesn’t want to, that’s –”

“Now, now …” Fluttershy gripped her hoof; it somehow both felt soft and was the right level of firm that she couldn’t comfortably break it. She reached for Discord’s paw, and took that too. And then the little yellow pony began to slowly pull Dash and Discord together, tiny step by tiny step, as she cajoled, “Come on, you two, it’ll be a great chance to get to know each other. And I’m sure with such mischievous friends working together, you can do something really funny.”

They looked at each other, wearing similar wary expressions.

“What’s the matter? It’ll be more fun this way. You can combine your resources!”

“Resources? Fluttershy, I mean no offense to you as a pony, but what resources could she offer me?”


Fluttershy smiled at Discord, and asked, “Weren’t you just telling me –”

He balked, and snapped, “Uh, no! No, I was not!”

“ – that you didn’t want to bomb in front of a crowd again –”


“ – and you’d like a mortal’s perspective on what would be funny?”

Discord pouted. “I didn’t say I’d like one … but I suppose I could use one …”

Rainbow cleared her throat. “Excuse me! I still don’t want to be ‘used’. I know what’s going to happen. We’re going to plan a prank, and then this guy’s gonna go off-book and ruin the whole thing.”

Discord drew himself up and patted his chest. “I would never!” With a flourish of his paw, he produced a cupcake – a rainbow-patterned cupcake, she noticed with some annoyance – and held a straight face as he splattered it against his right eye. Fluttershy giggled under his next words. “I hereby pledge to play my part in any concerted effort to bamboozle, startle, amuse or otherwise mess with the guests of this party.” A snap of his paw cleaned the conjured icing and cake off of his face, and he added, “Provided that part is big enough. I will not stand for being stuck in the proverbial chorus.”

Rainbow stalled another few seconds, then conceded, “Fine, I guess you can get some attention out of it. But no stealing the spotlight all for yourself.”

Discord stroked his beard. “I make no promises. I’m a natural star.”

“There’s nothing natural about you …” Rainbow muttered.

Thank you.” Discord smiled sharply. “Now, how do you feel about gravity?”

“It’s pretty overrated. Why?”

“Perhaps we could temporarily suspend it when everypony starts singing carols! They’d be in the middle of their song, and then they’d all lift of the floor and dangle in midair. Picture all the confused flailing.”

She bit the corner of her mouth to keep from smiling. “Maybe …That could be fun …” She managed to supress her smile and said, “But how is that funny? They’d just hang there for a second, then you’d drop them. No punchline. And …” She lifted herself into the air unconsciously as she kept talking. “Call me an egghead, but I think a prank should be clever. Y’know? It’s gotta have something to do with the pony, or with the situation. Like I once pranked Twilight with invisible ink because she’s always writing stuff. That wouldn’t be funny with a pony who doesn’t write; they’d never even notice.”

Discord stroked his beard, pondering. “True … you have a poison joke sense of humour.”

“Don’t know what you’re talking about, but sure. So we should relate the prank to Hearth’s Warming. What if we put something in the star that made it blow up when they turned the tree lights on?”

Discord’s mouth twisted, looking skeptical. “That could be unexpected … but then they’ll all look at the tree instead of at us…”

“Um, excuse me,” Fluttershy interjected, only for Rainbow to interrupt.

“Yeah, yeah, I know what you’re thinking, ‘Shy, and we can come up with something better. Be a little more off-the-wall. Everypony who suspects a prank would think of the star, first thing. Let’s mess with something less obvious.”

“Besides, wouldn’t everypony think there’d been a magical accident?” Discord pointed out, conjuring a ball to toss in one claw, fidgeting in thought. “Instead of saying to themselves, ‘oh, we’ve been had! Our grand celebration has been made a mock! Don’t I feel foolish?’ they’d say ‘Oh no, call the repairpony!’”

“Ooh, that’s true.” Rainbow began to fly in contemplative circles. “So whatever we do, it should lead back to us. Or we just yell ‘gotcha’ when it happens.”

“Feh. There’s no showbuisness in yelling ‘gotcha’. If we’re going to draw attention to ourselves, and we certainly are, I won’t participate unless we really make them look.”

“Like, how?”

Discord glanced around the balcony, paying particular attention to the decorations. “Hmm … ah!” He plucked a sprig of holly from the wall, and rolled it in his paw. “What lovely red berries, and that white trim … I like it!” A little flourish, and a crown of holly appeared wrapped around his head, tucked against his horn and antler. “When we draw everypony’s attention, we ought to be dressed festively.”

Rainbow snickered. “What in the clouds are you doing? Planning on picking somepony up?”

He frowned at her odd mirth. “I could pick somepony up, but you said that wasn’t funny enough.”

Rainbow cackled, dropping to the ground in laughter, which only confused the draconequus further. Fluttershy supplied, “Oh, Discord, she means, um … wearing holly has a particular history as a Hearth’s Warming tradition. If you’re wearing it, it means you’re looking for somepony to kiss. And um … it’s generally agreed that only mares wear it. If a stallion were looking for a Hearth’s Warming date, he’d wear pine. But it’s only an old custom, it’s not so important. If you want to wear holly, that’s okay …”

Discord’s face cleared. “Oh, is that all? Well, no matter.” He snapped his talon.

The blue pegasus started to catch her breath, sitting up on her haunches. “Oh, wow, that was g –” She fell silent, her smile dropping away in surprise.

Rainbow had never even considered the possibility of a female draconequus, but that was unmistakably what she was looking at. Discord’s body, though just as mismatched as before, was far sleeker this way. The odd bits of him – no, her – that used to jut out were smaller and followed the line now: the snaggletooth, the bushy eyebrows, the spines on her tail, all shrunk and smoothed out. The last word Rainbow would ever have applied to Discord was ‘aerodynamic’, which she still did not, but it was a little more appropriate. In place of the goatlike goatee, she had a flowing white mane, blended with the coarser black hair further down her neck.

An uncomfortably intense swell of warmth ran over her whole coat, and Rainbow went still, hoping to the sky that she wasn’t visibly blushing. Her stomach clenched in embarrassment at her very first thought: Oh, ponyfeathers, she is so hot.

She cleared her throat. “There. I trust this satisfies your pony customs?” Her new voice made Rainbow’s ears twitch. The first ponies that came to mind at the sound of it, though they were the weirdest two she could think to put together, were Celestia and Trixie. That voice was distinguished and smooth, but incredibly smug.

Fluttershy’s only reaction was an affectionate smile. “It does! But you don’t have to, you know. Only if you want to.”

“Well, I’m the best-looking existential being at this party, I deserve to be suitably ostentatious.” Discord looked to Rainbow. How could her eyes be so pretty with such bizarre colours? “What do you think, prism pony? How do I look?”

Many years of experience keeping her wings under control spared her the humiliating flare, but she couldn’t help a slight shiver in her pinions. “Uh …” This was not good. If Discord had any idea what she was thinking right now, she would never live it down. That immortal demon would keep making fun of her until long after death.

Rainbow scowled, and snapped, “Weird, that’s how you look. Since when can you do that? You’ve never done that before.”

Fluttershy piped up from behind Discord, “Actually, she does this every now and then. You’ve just never seen it.”

“So it’s ‘she’ now? What even are you?”

Discord turned her snout up, and replied with a vain lilt, “I’m a spirit of chaos, my dear. I’m whatever …” she ran her paw through her luxurious new mane, “… I want to be.”

Oh, don’t touch your hair … damn it! Her feathers quivered a second time. She looked at Fluttershy just to take her eyes off Discord ... and her best friend was biting back an amused smile. Horseapple. She could tell. Of course she could tell. Why wouldn’t her friend instantly see through her?

Rainbow ground her teeth slightly and blurted out something. “Ugh, that’s … weird. You’re so weird. I’m out of here, I’ve gotta … check the tree.” She took off and flapped away across the grand hall, sure they were staring after her.

The pegasus tried to look busy stalling in midair around the top of the tree, her head down and staring intently at the pine needles as thought they were remotely interesting. After a few minutes of awkward hovering and deep breaths, the raw embarrassment of the scene she’d just fled cooled, just enough that she could understand what had happened.

Really, it wasn’t that surprising that she’d been attracted to Discord as soon as he suited her preference, not when she compared it to someone else she’d felt the same thing for. Her first crush had been on someone just as temperamental, trouble-making and disloyal, way back in her fillyhood. She hadn’t known any better at that age, and it had taken her a very long time to understand that those feelings didn’t mean Gilda was anything resembling a good friend. Desirable was not the same as dependable, especially not with her.

Rainbow crossly smacked at a popcorn string around a bough. It was humbling to realize that her taste in mares was still so terrible, and evidently might’ve even gotten worse since she was a foal. At least Gilda hadn’t attempted treason on all ponykind. But she’d felt a momentary something for Discord? Ugh …

“What’s keeping you? How long does it take to ‘check a tree’?”

“Whoa!” Rainbow whirled around to see Discord – male, thankfully – hovering just behind her with an impatient look. “Uh, hey. You’re back to normal?”

“Normal? How dare you. No, I’m just back the way you’re used to me.” He rolled his eyes in disapproval and explained, “Perhaps now we can continue our plans? I didn’t take you for a pony so easily weirded out. I hope you’re as good at pranking as everypony says.”

She puffed her chest out. “I sure am. That’s why ponies say it!”

“What were you checking the tree for?”

“Uh … I was just, um … I was checking out the ornaments, seeing if we could, I don’t know, do some prank with them, but nope, no, heh, I was wrong.”

He rubbed his beard, confused. “Didn’t you rule out the tree?”

“Well, I just … um …” she stuttered.

He waved a claw dismissively and took hold of her hoof. “Oh, never mind, doesn’t matter. What does matter is I just realized we ought to be planning our scheme somewhere more private.”

Rainbow barely had a moment to tense before he snapped his talon and the world disappeared into white light all around them.

The next sight of her home dimension that met Rainbow’s eyes was a small, unfurnished room, sparkling blue like the rest of the building. She didn’t know where in the castle they were specifically, but at least she could still hear the party; he hadn’t taken them too far away. She yanked her foreleg out of Discord’s grip, annoyed at the involuntary teleporting. A second snap, and Fluttershy appeared with them, along with her blanket and her sullen raccoon. She barely even seemed surprised, only concerned, stroking Nimble’s back to calm him down.

“Discord, I’ve told you not to apperate the animals. Angel’s used to it, but it scares the others.”

“I’m not crazy about it either, by the way.”

“Oh, hush, Loyalty. It’s faster than you ever could be,” Discord tossed off dismissively. Rainbow’s wings twitched with anger. “Now, where were we?”

She heaved a sigh, and said, “We were talking about our prank … and you wanted us to think of something … Something unmistakably ‘us’.” Rainbow got a little bit of a smile, and said, “You know, I once pranked all of Ponyville putting rainbow dye in their cookies!”

“Hmm. Acceptable calling card, I suppose … I once poured chocolate from the sky, does that do anything for you?”

Their brainstorm went on, tricks and tools and past exploits surfacing and resurfacing. Rainbow began to feel less apprehensive about all this; Discord just might be fun to prank with. But when they both had their own ideas, the only thing that could rein them in was the voice of kindness.

“That’ll never splash enough ponies! I didn’t sign on to mildly inconvenience a few random so-and-sos.”

“No, it’ll work! We’ll swap the punch bowls, and then, we could plant my firecrackers in the –”

“No, you two, no bombs!” Fluttershy cried. “How many times to I have to remind you?”

“Aw, a firecracker’s barely a bomb. Besides, how are we supposed to shock the guests if we can’t blow anything up?”

“Well, you’ll just have to be a little more creative.”

“I tried,” Discord jabbed his thumb in Rainbow’s direction, “but this one said that tearing holes in the universe is getting too complicated.”

“It is! Pranks don’t have to be all fancy … unless somepony keeps shooting down anything that might be disruptive. You know what a prank is, right ‘Shy?”

Fluttershy sighed, and said with exasperated flatness, “Please stop planning to break things.”

Discord slapped a paw over his eyes and Rainbow groaned. “Alright.” He raised his talon, still not looking. “We need a moment to let the creative juices flow without the mediator. I’m putting you and Thimble back on the balcony.”

“Disc - !”

And Fluttershy was gone.

Rainbow furrowed her brow. She kind of understood why he’d done that, it did feel a little stifling having such a naysayer around. But Fluttershy had seemed upset, and technically, they had promised to work with her.

“Hey, bring her back.”

“I will, I will. In a few minutes,” he tossed off.

She gritted her teeth. “No, now. I said bring her back. She was being kind of annoying, but you can’t just blink her away like that.”

“Why not? I’ve done it before. She’s never complained.”

Rainbow bristled. “So what? What makes you think you can treat ponies like that, just throwing them around?”

“If she minded, she would tell me. She tells me everything! We’re best friends, after all.”

“Best friend?” Rainbow sputtered. “You think you’re her best friend?”

“Why, of course I am!” he replied, half-singing. “Who else?” He raised an eyebrow, losing some of his mirth. “You didn’t think it was you, did you?”

She snarled, and flew up to his eye level to jab her hoof at him. “I’ve been with her since we were fillies! You didn’t even know what friendship was until two seconds ago.”

Discord leaned back, and planted his paw on her chest, shoving her away. “Get out of my face!”

“Don’t touch me!” Rainbow smoothed her fur and faced away from him. “You know what? Maybe we shouldn’t do this at all.”

“I have had it up to here, you impertinent little foal. What’s been ruffling your feathers all night?” Discord demanded.

Rainbow looked over her shoulder. “Really? You really want to know?”

“Yes, really.” He conjured a tape recorder to click and hold out. “For posterity. What’s your big important problem? Why do you keep yelling at me?”

She set her teeth, and decided to let him have it; he’d asked. “You’re a jerk. I don’t trust you. And I don’t want to trust you.”

His face opened in surprise. “You don’t? What’s not to trust? I wasn’t aware we had any outstanding debts …” He made a point of creating a little ledger to leaf through.

“Are you serious?” she asked, incredulous.

“Oh, never, but I am sincere. I sincerely don’t know what you could be talking about.”

“You locked me and my friends in a cage and you fed us to a centaur because you thought it’d be fun!”

Discord went quiet, dropping everything he’d summoned into nothing, his face blank. “What?”

“You really thought I’d just forget that?”

He swallowed. “I thought that was in the past. There was a song and everything, and Twilight said I was her friend.” A slight edge of sadness was in his voice, something Rainbow hadn’t expected to hear.

She shook her head, glaring at him. “I don’t get why Twilight was so quick to let that go. And I really don’t get why Fluttershy likes you so much, after you said right to her face that her friendship didn’t matter to you as much as getting to do whatever you want.”

“I – well, that’s not really what I said at all, and I didn’t mean – it – that’s not fair!” Discord’s mask of hurt cracked, and he glared at Rainbow with rising anger. “You have no idea why I threw in my lot with Tirek, you’re getting it all wrong! You can’t possibly understand –”

“Oh, I understand you just fine!” Rainbow yelled, flaring her wings. Words she’d turned over in her head for years finally had an occasion, and she threw them in his face. “You’re a … a wild animal!”

“I – what did you just call me?”

“I said you’re a wild animal! You’re not a pet because they actually do something for somepony. You’re like that raccoon who only comes to Ponyville to steal food. You do whatever you want and you don’t care about anything else. I give it another few months before you get bored of playing nice around Fluttershy, and you turn your back on her, on all of us, again. We’re not friends because you don’t have friends. You don’t deserve them!”

Discord froze. The only sign of life from him for a long moment was his gradually brightening eyes, their yellow light glowing and shimmering ever more intensely until literal flames leapt up around them and he bared his fangs, livid. “You’re going to regret that, little pony.” His talon came up and Rainbow felt his magic wrap around her like invisible chains when he tightened his grip on thin air.

Gah! What the buck are you –”

With a swipe of his arm, he flung Rainbow back against the wall. She hit the crystal and dropped to the ground. There was a loud snap of his talons as she struggled back to her hooves, and something felt horribly wrong. She looked at her back.

Her wings. He’d taken her wings again.

“Bad move, insulting the lord who can do that. Stupid pony.” He cackled.

Rainbow’s stomach pitched with fury, and she charged at Discord. His eyes were shut in laughter, the time was perfect. She’d pictured doing this many times, and had long thought he may not be able to work his unfair reality-warping powers if he couldn’t see what he was changing. Rainbow leapt for his face, and jabbed both forehooves at his glowing yellow eyes, smacking them with full force and provoking a pained, angry roar. He blindly swung his paw at her, which she just managed to dodge. Losing her wings was terrible, but she was still fast. She could still hurt him. “I’m gonna tear your wings off, you monster!”

“Grrrhhg … try it, insignificant little …” He flailed, willing objects into existence, knives, rocks, shears, only to lose his grip on them and let them slip back out of reality within seconds. Still unable to open his eyes, he whipped his tail around, clipping Rainbow’s hoof and knocking her to the floor. She scrambled upright and ran for his face again, readying her hooves to give his eyes another punch.

What in Equestria are you doing?!”

The combatants froze. Rainbow dropped her hooves. The pony at the door stood quivering, her wings outstretched in alarm. She galloped into the room and shoved herself between them, turning to Rainbow to force her to step away. “Rainbow Dash, don’t you dare hit him.”

He took my –”

“Yes he did, I can see that, but let me handle it.” She turned to fix Discord with an angry frown. He was just barely opening one eye, and Rainbow felt a little proud how bloodshot it was. “Discord,” she began, “give Rainbow back her wings.”

A tense groaning sound came from his twisted muzzle, slipping in and out of a hiss as his tongue flickered, but he slowly, painfully, raised his talon to snap his claws. In a brusque flash of light, Rainbow’s stolen limbs were back in their rightful place, and she nervously flapped them and ran her hoof over the layers of feathers, still very much upset that they could be taken so easily. She opened her mouth. “You son of –”

A firm hoof was against her lips, and angry teal eyes surprised her into silence. “Enough.” Her best friend’s voice had become so gentle that it had looped all the way back around to terrifying. Spitfire didn’t have such an air of command. “Sit down, and we will talk about this.”

Rainbow and Discord both settled to the floor, sitting upright. Fluttershy let a few seconds of glaring and tense silence go by before she said, “Now, Discord, Dash. I was not out of the room for very long. I heard you yelling and threatening each other, and I had to rush back to you so fast that I couldn’t carry Nimble with me without hurting him. So I had to fly away and leave him. With Twilight. Who he’s never met and doesn’t trust.” She sighed sharply, looking between them. “Do you know how it feels to be left alone at a party with ponies you don’t know? It’s awful! And you two just made me do that to Nimble. So whatever you were fighting about, I hope it was important.” She looked to Discord. “You first. What happened?”

“He came at me first!”

“I said, Discord first.” Fluttershy took a composing breath. “Go ahead.”

He growled and wiped his streaming eyes with his paw. “Miss Technicolour Dream Horse called me a wild animal.”

Fluttershy tilted her head with a confused face. “I’m sorry?”

“She said I’m selfish and fickle like a wild animal and I don’t deserve to have friends.”

Fluttershy approached. Rainbow Dash had been perfectly secure in what she’d said, and finally saying it had felt great … until right at that moment, looking back into Fluttershy’s eyes. “Did you really say that to him, Dash?”

“I – it was – well …” Sadness and hurt was visible in every line of Fluttershy’s body, and it made defending her words feel ever more impossible. Rainbow clenched her teeth and scoffed angrily, looking away from her friend’s expression to respond, “It’s just what I think! Besides, he’s not my friend.”

“Now, that’s not true, Rainbow. He’s very important to me, to Starlight, and you have had good times with him. And do I need to remind you that he helped save you from the changelings? You are friends, and friends do not treat each other that way.”

Rainbow shot Fluttershy a disbelieving look, but couldn’t bring herself to say anything.

“And Discord, friends don’t hurt each other, no matter how angry they are. Nothing she says to you is an excuse to take her wings.”

What? She said nopony should be my friend!”

“Yes, and that’s very hurtful. But ‘nothing’ means ‘nothing’. You can’t respond with violence. We’ve talked about this.”

He huffed and met Rainbow’s glare from across the room. Fluttershy paused, looking between them, her ears folded back in thoughtful disquiet.

“Okay … Rainbow?”

The pegasus in question broke the staring contest. “What?”

“Why don’t you tell me why you said that to Discord?”

Her wings fluttered behind her angrily. “I really need to explain? Guh … isn’t it obvious?”

Discord growled, and Fluttershy replied shortly, “Yes, you do.”

Pressed into speaking, the bitter words came unstuck again. She rolled her eyes and said, “Gee, where do we start? How about we go all the way back to when he flipped my brain inside out, all of ours, and tore our group apart just to break Twilight’s spirit for fun? What about when he took advantage of you and wrecked your house and Sweet Apple Acres? Or when he trashed the Gala just because you didn’t take him as your date? He’s always hurting ponies! Not even for any reason, just because he feels like it! Horseapples, I haven’t even brought up that one time he, I don’t know … locked us in a cage and let Tirek eat our magic!” Rainbow stomped up to Fluttershy and pointed a hoof at her. “Now I know he hurt you then! You were crying in Applejack’s hooves!”

Fluttershy’s expression was oddly neutral. “Rainbow, I forgave him. He was sorry, and I forgave him.”

Rainbow shook her head. “Well, of course you did. That’s you. You’re so nice to him. But –” The rest of her sentence filtered into her head, and Rainbow fell silent, not wanting to say it.

Fluttershy sighed. “You think that was a bad decision.”

“Shy …”

“You think I trust him too much. Isn’t that right?”

Rainbow lowered her wings. The satisfying rush of rightful anger had worn down; now it was just cold worry curdling in her stomach. Her voice dropped into a cautious murmur. “He’s taken advantage of you. He’s left you out to dry. And you just keep on forgiving him, but he keeps doing this stuff, over and over.” She shot the draconequus a suspicious glare. “One of these days, he’s going to hurt you again. It’s only a matter of time.”

A gasp of indignation, and Discord surged out of his corner toward them. The Wonderbolt instinctively leapt between the charging beast and Fluttershy, flaring her wings in preparation for another fight. He came to stop right in front of them, his whole body coiled with aggression. “How dare you!” he cried, an entirely different kind of shine coming to his eyes. “If you really think I’d do anything to –”

“‘Think’? You do that all the time! I can’t believe you’re still allowed in her house!”

He straightened enough to loom over her, baring his crooked teeth. “You’re a dense, limited little filly who could never understand what Fluttershy and I have! That she’s still friends with the idiot she met at flight camp, that’s what I can’t believe,” he sneered.

“Well, somepony has to have her back.”

Discord gave a very deep growl. Behind her, Fluttershy gasped. “Rainbow!” In a flurry, she took off and hovered between the two of them. She held her hooves up to Discord. “Whatever you’re thinking right now, don’t do it. I won’t have you fighting.”

“Fluttershy,” he said, his voice deceptively controlled. “Please move.”

She put her hoof on his chest, and guided him back into sitting. “Try to calm down. I asked Rainbow to speak, and she did. Now, it’s your turn, and she has to listen to you.” Fluttershy settled in her original position, between them, but not blocking them.

Rainbow lowered her wings and sat, with reluctance, still burning a hole through Discord with her eyes. The draconequus grumbled, glaring into one corner and lashing his tail. “Ugh … do I have to talk about my ‘feelings’?”

“Well, if you’re going to yell at somepony for not understanding them, then yes you do.” Fluttershy’s reply came in a matter-of-fact tone, and Discord settled somewhat at the sound of her voice.

He met Rainbow’s dead stare, and began. “I am not a wild animal. And I would never hurt Fluttershy.”

A dismissive scoff came to the tip of her tongue, but Rainbow swallowed it. Fluttershy would be upset if she didn’t at least try to listen to this.

“Her friendship matters to me very much, and I am loyal to her. Because with her, I can … sit still.”

Rainbow tilted her head in confusion, leaving Discord to sigh with frustration. He looked to Fluttershy, who motioned for him to keep trying. He took a breath, and continued. “You’re too young, and too used to this solid, predictable dimension to understand how easily and how deeply I feel bored. To be bored turns a second into an eternity, a miserable eternity. Boredom is like death, and many centuries of my life were spent simply trying to evade it, with any distraction I could think of. I played with chaos constantly; every joke I could think of, every new idea I could surprise myself with, I’d put it into practice. And ponies, you’re such emotional little things, so used to your predictable patterns, playing tricks on you was the most fun.

“But nothing lasted, not even playing with ponies. I would grow bored of every joke so quickly, and I’d need to think of another, and another, something bigger and funnier every time. I just kept running from boredom … until I’d taken it all too far, and your lovely princesses came to free their subjects from my reign of terror. Then … stone.”

Something about his horrified, disgusted tone summoned the memory of sitting in her hospital bed to the front of Rainbow’s mind, and she shuddered involuntarily. “That … that must’ve been awful.”

“One thousand years. I couldn’t even move.” He and Rainbow both had to take a deep breath. Fluttershy went to his side, and touched his paw in comfort. He continued.

“But, well … skipping ahead to the day I decided to try this ‘friendship’ thing with Fluttershy. I had my doubts it could possibly be fun. But I’d felt something for her that had never happened before, that maybe making her happy could be ‘fun’ in a different way. Something that wouldn’t grow boring so easily. Doing something quiet and friendly like talking over tea would bore me with most anyone else, but with her … it never occurs to me that I need to run off and play my old games. I never feel boredom creeping in. I can be content to sit still. It’s … it’s all very new.”

Rainbow nodded, but kept her face stern. “And Tirek? If you were so content, what happened there?”

Discord frowned at the floor. “Okay … I …”

Fluttershy stroked his paw. “Take your time, Discord.”

It took a few slow breaths before he picked his sentence back up. “I was … I was a Tartarus bound coward, alright?” he spat out. With the words out, he slackened a little, slightly relieved to have the admission over with. “Things were going fairly well with Fluttershy, but I just found it so hard to believe that would last. I was waiting for the day when the contented peace went back to being boredom, and now that I had a friend I couldn’t let down, I wouldn’t be able to fall back on my old tricks. I’d be trapped in boredom, by ponies, again, and with no way out. I was afraid that taking Tirek’s side was my last chance to be free, and evade the dreaded boredom forever.”

“You were afraid?”

He grumbled, disgusted, but said, “Yes. And I know it’s not worth anything to you, but I’m not proud of that.”

Rainbow’s brow furrowed. “I – No, it is worth something. I just … I didn’t think you could be sorry.”

“Well, shows what you know. I can. And I am.”

“Okay …” She shuffled her hooves in discomfort, unprepared for feeling guilty. “Listen, I just wanted to protect Fluttershy. And, um … I’m sorry I lashed out at you to do that.”

Discord stiffened, made a slight choking sound, but managed to say, “I’m … sorryItookyourwings.”

Rainbow raised an eyebrow, but shrugged and said, “Alright, I believe you.”

He exhaled in a rush. “Thank you, that was not easy. And I can certainly relate to getting a touch carried away protecting someone. Though it hurts that you think you need to protect her from me.”

Fluttershy politely cleared her throat, drawing their attention at once. “Excuse me, friends, but if I could just say … I don’t need nearly as much protection as you think.”

Rainbow’s eyes dropped to the floor, her face flushing, and Discord chuckled. “Oh, well, alright,” he said.

“Heh … noted.”

She brought her hooves together. “Now, I’m sorry to leave, but if you’re okay, I really need to go back and get Nimble. He’s sure to be quite upset by now.” She turned and lifted her wings.

Rainbow’s eyes widened with a bolt of inspiration, and she cried, “Wait, ‘Shy! I just thought of what our prank should be!”

Fluttershy looked over her shoulder, and Discord lifted from the floor, ears forward. “Oh, do tell!”

“Which Hearth’s Warming story were you planning to tell?”

“Um, I thought The Little Creatures would be good this year. It is a bit scarier than the others, but I think everypony likes it. Why?”

“Great, that’ll work fine. What we should do is …”

When she’d finished explaining, Fluttershy was smiling hugely. “That sounds wonderful!”

Discord tilted his head back and forth. “I don’t know … there’s not much suffering in that …”

“Yeah … it’s pretty painless,” Rainbow agreed. “It’d be kinda boring any other day. But it’s Hearth’s Warming. Maybe we can settle for painless. I mean, you have to admit, it is still going to be fun and we are still going to be the center of the party.”

“That’s true.” Discord looked from Rainbow to Fluttershy, and finally smiled. “Alright, I’m in!”

“Alright, just let me go make sure Nimble’s down for the night …


The mood was pleasantly quiet, the colourful lights softened. All the ponies attending the party had clustered by the tree in a loose circle, to tell and listen to Hearth’s Warming stories. Twilight, as the host, had started them off with her own selection, but that was nearly an hour ago now. Fluttershy stepped into the center of the their circle,

“Gather ‘round. I’ve got a story to tell, folks … and it isn’t going to be pretty.”

Sighs of recognition came from the older ponies, while the younger guests murmured with intrigue, never having heard the Hearth’s Warming story that started so ominously.

Sitting next to her, Applejack leaned over and whispered, “Hey, RD, she picked your favourite this year!”

“Yeah, she did.”

In her careful, gentle way, Fluttershy began to tell the story of a mysterious, adorable little creature adopted by a well-meaning but naïve colt. She sternly outlined the rules of caring for the creature, its feeding, its sleep, the attention it needed. Then, with a tone of disappointment in her character, told of how the careless colt broke every single one. When he forgot to keep out the bright light, his photosensitive little friend suffered. When he knocked over his glass of water and wet the poor thing, it rapidly multiplied like a parasprite; what a terrible thing, when he clearly could not even care for one. And when he fed his clutch of critters at the wrong time of night, that which he’d known not to do, this was the last straw.

“Everypony makes mistakes, friends, but when you’re caring for something, someone, your mistakes happen to them. And there’s only so much a creature can take,” Fluttershy advised. She paused, holding the foals in suspense … and then, in skin-crawling detail, described how the cute little animals, having had enough, metamorphosed into voracious, spiny monsters with blotchy skin, sharp teeth, and a violent sense of humour. The foals stared with wide, frightened eyes, and Rainbow stared with a gleeful grin.

Curled in Fluttershy’s mane, shrunk to the size of a chameleon, Discord patiently listened to her cautionary tale, awaiting his cue. When she told everypony about how the monsters escaped the colt’s house and rapidly multiplied, wreaking havoc across his entire unsuspecting town, he almost gave away his position laughing.

In a tone that bordered on regretful, Fluttershy told of how the colt had to find and kill every one of the monsters, how he had to correct his mistake with violence. “If only he’d been more careful, friends, none of them would have to suffer. But by now, setting fire to their nest was just the only way to save his town …”

Finally, Fluttershy came to the final scene, when the colt and the last living monster fought in his favourite toy store, breaking everything, smashing displays, clawing and kicking. “He and the monster circled, gauging their opponent. The monster bared its fangs …” She paused, forcing everypony to wait with bated breath. And then, she spoke in a jarringly casual tone.

“And it said, ‘This morning, I woke up with this feeling …”

Confused sounds came from all the ponies around them, and Rainbow couldn’t help chuckling.

“Wait, they can talk?”

“I don’t get it.”

“… I didn’t know how to deal with.” Fluttershy continued.

“What?” Applejack said shortly.

“Fluttershy, what are you doing? That’s not how it goes,” Twilight remarked, somewhat indignant at the wrongful delivery of the text.

“And so I just decided to myself …” Her voice was very slowly morphing, inching closer and closer to a lower register, and her words drifted from speaking into singing. “To hide it to myself …

“Oh, what is this?” Rarity asked with slight irritation.

Discord slithered down over Fluttershy’s shoulder and gradually became bigger, revealing himself as the singer. “And never talk about it, and I didn’t go and shout it …

Their listeners gave many sighs and gasps of realization, and sitting next to her, Applejack smiled and shook her head. “Aw, no …”

Rainbow took quick glances from side to side. Everypony needed to be watching him before she could make her move.

When you walked into my roooom …” Fully formed, Discord stepped away from Fluttershy, giving her a parting stroke over her shoulders with his tassel, and then leapt into the air with a burst of conjured pink butterflies. “I think I love you!

Snickers began to roll through the group. Fluttershy blushed at his choice of decoration. There was no better moment; Rainbow quietly backed out of the group, and dashed to the tree. She crouched behind it to be sure she was out of sight, then shrugged off her saddlebags, pulling out the only two items she needed.

So what am I so afraid of? ” Discord was really milking it, swanning about dramatically like an overexcited drama student, and every eye in the room was on him. Rainbow couldn’t stop grinning even as she struck her match. The firecrackers caught within seconds, and she tossed them a measured distance away. They landed in the perfect place, far enough from the ponies not to hurt them, but still just close enough.

I’m afraid that I’m not sure of …” Discord clutched his chest and let his long neck droop in a pretend swoon. “A love there is no cure for!

The wicks burned down, and the thrilling cracks and flashes rang out. The startled cries of the other ponies made Rainbow’s heart skip with the excitement, and she sprang from her hiding place through the resulting cloud of smoke. The ripple of surprise just at seeing her was so satisfying, especially Applejack’s hilarious double-take that the spot next to her was empty, and she hadn’t even gotten to the best part. Rainbow drew in a deep breath, and raised a hoof.

I think I love you!

The answering laughs were even louder than the initial declaration. “Isn’t that what life is made of? ” Rainbow leapt into the air herself, and flew to meet Discord. They locked eyes, feeling the slightest moment of indecision in their improvised performance, then raised their forelegs. Pressing her hooves into his claw and paw, they mutually agreed to ignore any awkwardness. They had it in them to perform this love song, lingering tension be consigned to Tartarus.“Though it worries me to say, I’ve never felt this way, ” she sang.

Heeeyyy …” Discord supplied.

Believe me! ” They fell into step vocally, better than Rainbow even thought they could. “You really don’t have to worry! I only want to make you happy! ” All around them, the last groans and protests petered off, overtaking by beautiful rising mirth, and the whole room began to stomp in time.

And if you say –” Discord clamped his mouth shut and pointed at Rainbow, and she instinctively took his direction to finish the line.

Hey, go away!

He pressed a claw to his chest, and Rainbow allowed him to be the sole voice for the lyrics, “I will!” His eyes sparkled, and Rainbow’s heart thundered at the rush of a trick pulled off. “But I think better still –” They began to spin in the air, and both picked the vocals back up to sing, “I’d better stick around and love you!

Discord gradually lowered them as they spun, turning their circles into a corkscrew, and the ponies beneath them parted to make room. Hooves and claw touched down on the crystal floor, and the two pulled in a breath for the final lines. “Do you think I have a case? ” They both pointed at each other at the same time as they sang, “Let me ask you to your face, do you really love me? ”

This was it, this was the finish. Rainbow filled her lungs and spread her wings, ready to belt the last bit. Discord snapped his claw, and renewed cheers went through the hall, but she couldn’t break concentration to look and see what he’d done.

Cause I think I loooove yooouuu ….!

They all but howled the final word in jubilation. Their voices and the excited whoops and stomping of the crowd echoed in the enormous grand hall, ringing in the air. With her head tilted back, Rainbow saw what had happened: over their heads, Discord had conjured a flaming heart, exactly as it was described in the story of the first Hearth’s Warming. She looked at him, and fleetingly wondered if he was old enough to have actually seen the unification of Equestria. Instead of asking, she offered her hoof to bump. “Nice!”

He made a fist with his talon and bumped it, grinning broadly. “Thank you. A pleasure to perform with you. That was fun!”

“Buck yeah! That was awesome!”

Ponies parted to let Fluttershy through to the front. She was smiling from ear to ear. “You two were great! Lovely detail, Discord!”

He gave a bow in her direction, as did Rainbow. “Well, we couldn’t have done it without you, ‘Shy.”

“To think, we might’ve blown up the tree and started a housefire without her guidance.”

“Heh … yeah, I think we’d’ve done a lot worse than that.”

“What?” came Twilight’s voice.

A high-pitched bouncing sound rose distinct from the din of excited ponies, and suddenly, Pinkie Pie was standing in front of them, practically vibrating with excitement. Rainbow approached. “Hi, Pinkie! That was pretty awesome, ri – huh?”

Her friend had reached out suddenly, put something on her head, snickered, and darted away in the span of two seconds. The cheers and stomps finally came to a rest; anticipatory murmurs and excited oohs from the foals emanated from around them. Fluttershy had her hoof pressed over her muzzle, trying not to laugh. A little nonplussed, Rainbow tilted her ears to feel what it was. She felt something leafy, slightly sharp, and comprehension spread over her face. She looked to Discord, who had an amused smirk, and asked, “She put holly in my mane, didn’t she?”

“Oh, yes!” he replied.

Pinkie!” Rainbow yelled.

“It’s all fair game, Dashie!” came her answering shout, prompting several bouts of laughter throughout their audience.

Discord cleared his throat, and leaned down to Dash’s eye level. “I believe they want us to kiss?”

“Yeah, I think they do …” Rainbow glanced at Fluttershy, seeking help. Her best friend only mouthed the word ‘kiss’ at her, fluttering her wingtips. Rainbow looked back at Discord. He paused another moment, then to Rainbow’s surprise, put his paw to her face.

Politely, he asked, “If I may, prism pony?”

Rainbow hesitated for a moment, then shrugged; it wouldn’t matter much, and maybe it worked with their prank overall. “Sure, go ahead, it’ll be funny.”

Unexpectedly, Discord frowned. “You know, I don’t think you’re appropriately enthusiastic. Kissing the one and only Discord is sure to make this the best Hearth’s Warming you’ve ever had.”

Rainbow rolled her eyes. “Yeah, yeah … sorry, dude, you’re just not that good of a kiss.”

“Oh really?” he retorted. He thought, then grew a devious grin on his face, one that actually made Rainbow slightly nervous. “Hmm, I think I know just what you want.”

He snapped his talon, covering his body in white light, and reappeared as – oh. Rainbow’s breath caught.

“Better?” she asked, her oddly coloured eyes shining, her curtain of soft white hair falling over one ear.

There was no supressing it, not this time. Rainbow’s wings snapped outward so quickly, she could hear the rush of air. Many ponies giggled, Fluttershy among them, and if she weren’t already blushing so badly it would have gotten worse.

“Aw, yeah …” she breathed. “Um … how could you tell?”

“I did say Fluttershy tells me everything,” Discord answered, stroking her cheek with one lion claw.

“Um … not cool, ‘Shy …” Rainbow said, though her voice was far too soft and unsteady to sound angry.

Discord smiled, and without another moment of hesitation, Rainbow leaned in and pressed her muzzle to Discord’s. The sound of the other ponies whooping and laughing was very distant to the sound of the blood rushing in her ears; her heart was pounding so hard that she felt just slightly dizzy. Discord flickered her tongue playfully and cupped one talon around Rainbow’s head to stroke her mane; one thing she could say about the draconequus, she made the most of every moment. And this was one Rainbow was equally determined to make last. Whenever they finally stopped, it would not be for Rainbow pulling away. Above them, Discord’s conjured heart still gently pulsed, casting its pink glow over this unlikely tableau.

Rainbow couldn’t say whether or not this would matter in the morning, whether there was anything here or it was all just the party. But she could say that she’d found something amazing with the last being she’d ever expected.

Author's Note:

WOOO! I finished it by the deadline! I very nearly didn’t, because despite all the notice I got on this contest, I left everything to the last minute like I always do. This was brainstormed and outlined a month ago, and what’s here is basically a first draft I hammered out in a week. How is it?

Anyone who’s seen Scream 2 might be asking, why? And the answer is, I knew I wanted their big prank to ultimately be a particularly tonally inappropriate music number, but I thought I was going to come up with a funnier song, maybe ponify something classic. That was the plan. But a whole month of trying to think of something went by, and no brainwave about a better song came to me. So the night of writing that scene, I said 'Whatever, just use the same one that inspired this scene.’ I think it only fair to leave the relevant clip here; it’s not really my own idea, after all.

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Comments ( 6 )

Jesus Christ, I have to ask, what is that card game you're using for the cover image?

It's Twilight Sparkle's Secret Shipfic Folder. It is a very funny game. The contest I entered uses random draws of the cards as prompts. You can see the forum here, to see what some of the other writers got. Mine was one of the less insane ones.

Nice, but, I don't know how to think/feel about the sudden musical number or the gender-fluid bit. It's interesting but it works.
I don't know, I think it would've been enough just having Rainbow pining for Fluttershy and having her own jealousy toward Discord.

Ah, well. Discord's gender fluidity is really just my own beloved headcanon. And as to Rainbow and Discord's romantic element being a little unnecessary, I actually agree. Thing was, I drew those cards and I had to write a shipfic with them to enter. But perhaps their character conflict all revolving around Fluttershy betrays how I really do prefer to write Fluttercord and Flutterdash. And I just really, really like Fluttershy. :yay:

That was freakin FANTASITIC!!! i really really enjoied it ^^Such a good read :D
i really wonder what could happen next xD is there any possibillity for a sequel? :3

btw really good characterization as well :DD

Well, I'm glad you like it! It's gratifying that the characterization in particular is good; it is my favourite part. I don't have any plans for a sequel currently; it was only a randomly drawn prompt, and other projects are my priority now. More importantly, I don't have an idea for what happens in the morning. What in particular would you want answered?

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