• Published 25th May 2018
  • 2,295 Views, 989 Comments

Little Consequences - Skijarama

Princess Rainbow Dash and her friends have found themselves in the newly restored Crystal Empire, and now struggle against the forces of Queen Chrysalis and the enigmatic King Sombra in an effort to reclaim Canterlot and save Equestria.

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Going Home

Twilight Sparkle stood in the infirmary with her saddlebags on her back and her eyes glued to the bed she would now be leaving behind. For the last five days, that large room and whatever she could see through the magically reinforced windows had been her whole world. The only ponies she knew where the doctor who had routinely helped her with her physical therapy, which had taken much less time than had been anticipated, as well as Rainbow Dash, Spike and Princess Cadance. The other two princesses had apparently gone back to Canterlot after she had met them.

She adjusted her saddlebags a little as she stood there. Contained within were what little remained of the items and supplies she had apparently brought with her, as well as a small selection of seven or so books that had been donated to her by locals who wanted to make her recovery as pleasant and as informative as possible. ‘Their way of giving back’ she had been told.

The doctor stood by the door with a warm smile on her face, observing Twilight quietly. She had a bright yellow coat with a vibrant purple mane and tail, both of which were kept in neat buns. Her maroon eyes betrayed years of experience and a sort of gentle understanding and kindness that had more than once given Twilight pause. Her cutie mark was a red cross made up of finely cut and polished rubies. “Ready to go yet miss Sparkle?” she asked in a gentle voice, trying not to pressure Twilight.

Nevertheless, Twilight slowly nodded. “I think so,” she replied hesitantly. She took one last long look at the infirmary, then turned and made her way for the exit. She paused in the doorframe with the doctor by her side and looked down the long hallway to either side. Her face scrunched up with a sheepish cringe, and she let out a weak, awkward chuckle. “Eh heh… I don’t know where I’m going…” she admitted before looking hopefully at the doctor.

She just nodded along in kind understanding. “I know. I was going to guide you out anyway. Right this way, please. Princess Rainbow Dash is expecting you in the plaza,” she said softly before starting down the hall to the left. Twilight fell into step behind her, taking the chance to really admire and examine the architecture as they went. She found herself almost stopping more than once to just admire the beauty of the place, as well as many of the ancient pieces of art that hung from the walls, more or less unchanged from when they had vanished off the face of the world a thousand years ago. She was so entranced that, more than once, she almost bumped into somepony in the halls. She would quickly offer hasty apologies, only for them to be brushed off with smiles and understanding nods.

As far as Twilight could tell, she was seen as a hero to these ponies, along with her circle of friends. She knew she had been there to help stop somepony named Chrysalis, and somepony else named King Sombra, although Rainbow was given most of the praise for that one. She had heard the doctor’s take on it, but surprisingly, Rainbow and Spike had not talked about it with her yet, citing that they wanted to wait until they were home and had a chance to really process everything.

Of course, Twilight couldn’t remember any of the events themselves or the other friends of hers that had been present. She couldn’t help the guilty feeling in her chest as she tried to remember their faces, but couldn’t. She had some very loose ideas of what they looked like, thanks to Rainbow and Spike’s descriptions, but nothing concrete. Fluttershy was apparently especially close to her and Rainbow, on account that they had all known each other since they were young, and Rainbow had gone out of her way to go into detail about her. The others were still given details, of course, especially Rarity once Spike started talking about her. It was pretty clear the little guy was head over heels in love with this apparent fashion designer, and Twilight had to contain a small smile as she remembered Rainbow teasing him about it.

Eventually, though, her thoughts were pulled away from studying the architecture and contemplating what little she knew about her friends when a rush of cool air washed over her face. Blinking and shielding her eyes from the sun with a foreleg, she realized they were now outside, and the sun was high overhead. The sky was pristine, without a single cloud in sight, giving her a breathtakingly clear view of the land for miles in every direction. Even past the far edges of the city, she could see the tops of the tallest hills of snow, and the distant peaks of colossal mountains.

She could see ponies going about their days, talking to each other and laughing and smiling. Many of them caught sight of her and gave respectful nods of their heads at the sight of her. With her wings twitching nervously on her back, Twilight plastered on a large grin for a moment before she looked directly ahead. Her grin fell away when she caught sight of Rainbow Dash looking back at her from next to an ornate chariot of white and gold. Spike could be seen as well, looking back at her with an unreadable look on his face from the back. There were two ponies hooked up to the front of the chariot; a thestral and a pegasus, both in gleaming dark blue armor.

“Twilight,” Rainbow greeted with a small smile on her muzzle. It was clear that it was a strained smile, Twilight noted. She descended the steps a few paces, once again looking around at the massive palace over her head and the buildings that surrounded the plaza. Her eyes settled on the Crystal Heart in the end, watching as it slowly spun in place. She felt something, then, immediately knowing that it was a message from the relic itself.

Sympathy and condolences. It was trying to comfort her over the loss of her memories.

“You ready to go?” Rainbow asked gently, drawing her out of her momentary trance.

Twilight shook herself and gave a slow nod. “I think so... As ready as I’m going to be, anyway,” she answered in a reluctant voice before continuing to move towards the chariot. She heard the doctor step back into the palace and quietly close the door behind her, allowing her to move forward undistracted. She still took her time, though, just soaking in all of the sights and sounds of the world around her.

Rainbow watched her come for a little bit before hopping up into the back of the chariot close to the back. She then turned and leaned over the edge to offer Twilight her hoof. “Come on, Twilight. It’s time to go home…” she said softly.

Twilight reached out and took the hoof, allowing herself to be helped up into the back of the chariot. She took a seat so that she was essentially sandwiched between her two fellow passengers. For a moment, the three just sat there, waiting for something. Then Rainbow glanced back at the Palace with a frown. “Come on, Cadance, you were supposed to be here by now…” she said under her breath impatiently

“Cadance…” Twilight repeated the name slowly, her brain working to conjure an image of the pony in question. “She’s the pink alicorn that’s in charge of this city now, right?”

Spike gave her a nod. “Yeah. Rainbow and Cadance handled all of the legal stuff and royal procedures for the transfer of power yesterday. I was surprised with how okay the locals were with it; I guess they can tell Cadance is a good fit,” he explained before joining Rainbow in scanning the area for the pony in question. “She was supposed to be here to see us off…”

As if on cue, a voice rang out through the crowd. “Wait for me!” Cadance called, becoming visible above the heads of the ponies as she came flying in from outside the plaza. She gave her wings a few majestic flaps before setting gracefully down next to the chariot, short of breath. Once she was stable, she let out a puff of air and gave the trio in back a small grin. “Sorry I’m late; I got held up in the throne room.”

“Nah, it’s good. Glad you made it,” Rainbow replied with a smile of her own. “And thanks again for taking over for me here. I know I was asking a lot of you.”

Cadance shook her head and dismissed the apology. “Don’t worry; this is my calling, not yours,” she said with a smile before looking at Twilight. Her smile took on a sad quality that made Twilight shift uncomfortably in her seat. “So, Twilight… how are you feeling? Are you sure you're ready to leave?”

Twilight hesitated, then nodded. “Like I just told Rainbow, I’m as ready as I’m going to be,” she confirmed before looking down at the ground. “I’m not going to get my memories back by staying in one place. I need to go home.”

Cadance offered a small smile. “Of course…” she said softly before leaning forward to give Twilight an affectionate nuzzle. Twilight winced back from the contact but didn’t protest beyond that. She didn’t return the gesture, either, and when Cadance pulled back, there was clearly a look of disappointment in the princess’ eyes. Still, she didn’t let it kill the mood, and Cadance backed away to stand tall and give Rainbow a hard look. “Now, Rainbow Dash, just so you know, I haven’t given up on you two, so neither should you,” she declared, causing Rainbow’s cheeks to light up just slightly with a blush, though Twilight just looked confused. Cadance than gave Rainbow a wink. “So take care of each other, okay? And keep me posted.”

Rainbow gave a stiff nod. “S-sure…” she still managed to smile, despite her slight embarrassment. She glanced at Twilight, hoping for a flicker of something similar, but all she got was the wandering eyes of somepony who had lost track of the conversation and was awaiting an explanation. Rainbow looked away for a moment, then looked back at Cadance. “Alright, well… goodbye, Cadance. See you when I see you,” she said before nodding at the drivers. “Scythe, Stark, take us home.”

The two bowed their heads and then began to pull the chariot down the street at a brisk canter. Ponies got out of their way as they passed, bowing for Rainbow and waving for Twilight. While Rainbow offered small smiles in return, Twilight watched with wide eyes. Did all of these ponies hold them in such high regard…?

Soon enough they were able to safely pick up their speed to a full-blown gallop. As they tore down the street, Twilight was surprised to find that she didn’t even feel a single bump in the road, just a slight vibration through the floor of the chariot. Their drivers then unfurled their wings and lifted into the air, gaining an impressive amount of speed and leaving the Empire far behind.

The following day, the frozen north was far behind them. They had stopped to camp at the base of the mountains on the southern slopes after the sun had set and resumed the journey at dawn. The seemingly endless green hills, wetlands and small patches of forests rolled out beneath them for miles and miles. Mountains could be seen poking up into the sky far in the distance, and a large and lush river cut and wound through the plains below. Twilight looked out at it all with wide, wondrous eyes. She’d been awestruck by the sight when she had seen it in the light of the sunrise and had not once stopped being enthralled by the amazing view, even now, hours later and well into the afternoon.

Rainbow watched her from the side while Spike opted to get in some extra sleep by taking a nap on the floor of the chariot, his snores lost in the wind. While Twilight’s amnesia had brought her mood down, it had thankfully left her curiosity and desire to learn completely unscathed. Rainbow looked back out at the lands before them and studied the terrain, soon deducing that they were another four hours out from Ponyville. A long trip, to be sure, and they were bound to get bored sooner or later without something to talk about... she looked over at Twilight, saw the wonder and curiosity in her eyes at the landscape around them, and smiled. How could she deny that look? How could she deny that thirst for knowledge?

“See that mountain?” she suddenly spoke up, drawing Twilight’s attention. Rainbow leaned forward and pointed at a peak in the distance which was partially surrounded by mist. The river that wound below them seemed to originate from somewhere behind it.

Twilight squinted at it, then nodded. “Yeah, I see it. What’s it called?” she asked.

“That’s Mount Neighagra,” Rainbow answered. “It’s home to Neighagra falls, one of the biggest waterfalls in the known world. It feeds into the river down there, see?” she pointed it out, and Twilight nodded in understanding. “It’s enormous, and according to a few ponies I know, extremely fun to fall down when inside a barrel. It’s pretty much one giant tourist trap, and a lot of pleasure zeppelins stop there on their routes.”

“Woah… and what’s that over there?”

“Hmm? That? Oh, that’s galloping gorge. I’d say it’s nasty, given that it’s home to a lot of pretty nasty wild animals and monster, but ghastly gorge isn’t all that far from Ponyville, and it has the eels in it.”

“The eels?”

“Oh-ho, yeah. Giant land eels that live in rocks and eat ponies for breakfast.”

“They sound charming.”


“Hmm… and what about that over there?”

“Oh, that’s…”

This went on for hours. Twilight would ask about something in the distance, and Rainbow would happily tell her whatever she knew. On occasion, Spike, Scythe Glider, or Stark Jumper would chime in with their own knowledge or opinions on some locations, helping to feed the flames of Twilight’s rampant curiosity. With every new scrap of info she got, Twilight seemed to become more and more enthralled and absorbed in everything she was seeing and hearing.

From where she sat, as the sun began to set a few hours later, Rainbow couldn’t help but laugh under her breath. Twilight noticed this and gave her a questioning look. “What’s so funny?” she asked with a tilt of her head.

“Sorry, sorry,” Rainbow quickly apologized with a dismissive wave of her hoof. “It's just that you’re seeing all of this for the first time all over again. It's almost like when you were a filly in Canterlot...” her eyes and voice became reminiscing, and she looked out at the setting sun with her smile growing. “You were a genius... especially for your age. You were inquisitive, curious, always looking for new knowledge. A day for you was incomplete if you didn’t learn at least eighteen new things… and it was a special day if you managed to actually get me to learn something.”

Twilight’s ears drooped just slightly, and her smile faded somewhat. “Oh… I’m sorry I can’t-”

“Don’t,” Rainbow cut her off gently. She nudged Twilight in the ribs with her elbow and gave her a reassuring smile. “Don’t be sorry. You didn’t do anything wrong. Maybe you don’t remember it all right now, but that just means you have a whole world to learn about. So don’t be sad you can’t remember…” she reached out and touched her hoof to Twilight’s chin, lifting her head until they were looking into each other’s eyes. “Be excited that it’s all out there, waiting for you to find it all over again.”

Twilight looked back at her for several moments before nodding and giving a smile. “Right… I’ll try. Thanks, Rainbow.”

Rainbow withdrew her hoof. “What are friends for?” she asked before looking ahead at the landscape again.

Twilight’s brow furrowed at the word ‘friends.’ She looked down at the ground far below for a minute before speaking again. “Speaking of friends… will we be seeing ours when we get there?” she asked in a tentative voice.

Rainbow looked at her before giving a slow shake of her head. “No, not tonight. While we were talking about it over letters thanks to Spike, I asked them to let us have tonight to ourselves to just relax and wind down. We’ve both had a really stressful time, and you need to get familiar with home again,” she explained before giving her a small smile and nudge. “Tomorrow, though. Don’t worry.”

Twilight seemed satisfied with that, but said no more, continuing to watch the land pass them by far below. She was seeing a lot more lush green and rolling hills, with the wetlands and pockets of forests having vanished behind them as they came upon Canterlot Mountain. After several more minutes of flying, she felt Rainbow poke her shoulder. Glancing at her, Twilight saw that Rainbow was pointing directly ahead. Raising an eyebrow quizzically, Twilight turned and looked to see what had Rainbow was pointing at.

Her eyes widened and her jaw dropped. There, at the base of the tall mountain where Canterlot resides, was a humble village. The homes were small but cozy, colorful and inviting. The whole town practically bled friendliness and a sense of acceptance. She felt a stirring in her heart at the sight, and though she didn’t remember the town at all, she knew right away that it was Ponyville. A single tear fell down her cheek, and a smile formed on her face. Rainbow leaned closer to her, stopping just short of resting her head on Twilight’s shoulder.

“Here we are… Ponyville. Welcome home, Twilight."

Author's Note:

To Be Concluded...

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