• Published 10th Aug 2012
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Flying Through the Storm - volrathxp



Cloudchaser / Thunderlane Shipfic set in Hurricane Fluttershy.

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Chapter 1: Rainy Days

Flying Through the Storm

Chapter 1: Rainy Days

Love. Some ponies say it’s something that every pony should experience at one point in their lives. For me, love was something I never gave any thought or mind to. I wasn’t the romantic type. I didn’t pine over stallions, and I certainly never gave any consideration to the one I would spend the rest of my life with.

But then I met him. And my life would never be the same again.

I guess I’m getting a little ahead of myself aren’t I? My name is Cloudchaser, and I’m a pegasus. I live in the small town of Ponyville. And this… well this is my story.

**************************

*BEEP BEEP BEEP*

I groaned at the sound of the alarm clock blaring loudly in my shared room. Opening my eyes, I focused on the one thing in the room that really mattered. Flitter. My twin sister lay one bed over, still snoring away despite the alarm clocks insistence that we get up. Now Flitter really isn’t my twin. Ponies just call us twins because we look so much alike. My gaze drifted upwards towards the clock, the infernal device continuing to beep as my eyes locked onto the time. My eyes widened as I realized that we had in fact overslept and were now resoundingly late for work. Groaning, I reached up and hit the button to turn off the alarm.

“Flitter!” I shouted, flinging my covers off and leaping out of bed. A flap of my wings later and I crashed gently upon Flitter’s bed, instantly causing my sister to jolt awake.

“What, Cloudchaser? I’m snoozing!” She said, starting to roll back onto her bed with a sleepy yawn. I groaned, pounding upon her soft bed with my front hooves. Unlike most other pegasi, we lived in Ponyville proper and in an actual house, not a cloud one. Kind of odd I know for a pegasus named Cloudchaser, but I didn’t mind. I kind of liked the peace and quiet our small home afforded us. Even when things got a little crazy around town, like that one time Twilight Sparkle claimed she was visited by her future self or when Fluttershy took her assertiveness training a little too far. However, it was still a great place to live. Flitter lifted her head once more and grumbled at me.

“Whaaaaat?!” She whined, looking over at the alarm clock. I giggled as her eyes went wide as well, her silvery bed mane flopping over her neck as she moved to get out of bed. I hopped off the bed as Flitter made her way to our bathroom. I walked by, noticing that she was carefully styling her mane. I facehooved and sighed at her insistence upon looking pretty all the time.

“Flitter, we don’t have time for this. We’re already late!” I said with a frustrated tone.

“Well then it doesn’t matter then if I do my mane up then does it? Besides, maybe today will be the day for me!” She replied.

“You mean you’re finally going to ask Winter Storm out?” I asked. Flitter snorted and stepped past me, heading downstairs. I trotted down the stairs after her.

We really gotta stop getting to bed so late, I thought as I emerged into the kitchen. Last night, Flitter and I had stayed up far too late in Canterlot. In our defense, Vinyl Scratch was playing a one night only show, and some old friends from Cloudsdale had put the clincher on our plans. Couple this with every other night this past week ending up with my sister and I staying up all night after work and you had the recipe for two pretty tired pegasi. The warm sweet smell of cinnamon soon filled my nostrils as I noticed that Flitter was making breakfast instead of getting ready for work.

“Mmm… that smells delicious Flits,” I said. “But we’re late. We gotta get going to work.”

“Yeah, but you’re right. We’re already late. We should at least start the day off right with some breakfast,” she replied. She handed me a bowl of the oatmeal and I sighed.

”Fine, but we’re eating on the way alright? If we’re lucky we can get there before Rainbow Dash finishes her morning rounds,” I said. Flitter nodded. She grabbed her own bowl and her saddlebags. A few moments later we stepped out of our house and began the journey to work.

The sun was already shining brightly over the small town we called home, Celestia’s shimmering orb providing for all of her subjects. I took in the warmth from its rays and smiled. Today is going to be a good day, I thought. I can just feel it.

We made our way across the town square, taking in the scenery as we trotted along. Ponies of all shapes, sizes, and colors had begun to arrive in the town square, getting ready for that day’s market. At the far end of the square I could see the familiar sign belonging to Sweet Apple Acres. An orange earth pony was hauling the day’s apple crops onto the cart below it. We ate in silence, stowing the bowls into our saddlebags once we had finished.

Within a few minutes, we arrived at our destination: the Ponyville Weather Office. The squat structure managed to look solid and forbidding, which was impressive for a building made of clouds. We entered the small office and made our way to the timecards. I grabbed mine with my teeth and punched it, hoping that nopony had ---

“Cloudchaser! Flitter!” I heard the stern mare’s voice before I saw her. Oh no… I thought as I turned around, seeing my boss trotting up to my sister and me. Despite the fact that our boss was a bit of a lazy pony at times, she was our boss simply because she was the most dependable weather pegasus in all of Ponyville. Her rainbow colored mane was a waterfall of color on her slender blue neck as she stepped up to us.

“Oh… hey Rainbow Dash, fancy running into you here…” I said nervously as I tried to avoid the cyan mare’s gaze. “I uh… thought you would have been out already.”

“I’m actually done for the morning,” Rainbow said, puffing out her chest. That was another thing she liked to do. She always boasted about her speed, no matter what it was for. The only thing that made her boastful behavior tolerable was that it was accurate. She really was the fastest flier in Ponyville, and she had no problem letting you know it. “Gotta get ready for tonight. I have a lot of paperwork to do before then.”

“Tonight?” I ventured, trying to steer our conversation towards something that didn’t involve Rainbow asking why we were late… again.

“Yeah, we’re having a big meeting over at Twilight’s place tonight. You’ll need to be there,” she said as she trotted past me, heading towards her small office. Whew… I thought as I wiped the sweat from my brow. She didn’t --- “Oh and Cloudchaser? You two were late again. I know this may not seem like that important of a job to you girls, but you should at least show up on time. We can’t leave Ponyville hanging after all.” I sighed.

“Yes Rainbow, sorry it won’t happen again,” I replied. Rainbow nodded and disappeared into her office. A few moments later I could have sworn I heard snoring coming from it. I looked over at Flitter in defeat.

“I guess we’d better get to it then,” she said. “See you at lunch?” I nodded, grabbing my assignment card for the day off of the board. Cloud Clearing – Carousel Boutique the card read. I sighed. At least the first part of the day was going to be a relatively easy job. There were hardly ever any clouds over Rarity’s dressmaking shop. I bid Flitter good bye as she went off to her own assignment and began my delayed flight towards Carousel Boutique. The hardest part of flying out to Rarity’s place is the boutique’s relative position near the edge of town, so it took me a while to get there. Along the way I could see that the rest of Ponyville was beginning to wake up. I waved to Fluttershy as she was skipped into town from her small cottage on the part of town closest to the Everfree Forest. Pretty soon the skies above the colorful residence of Ponyville’s most fabulous dressmaker came into view. I groaned when I saw them. There were clouds scattered about everywhere! Clearly somepony hadn’t been maintaining this section of town too well.

“Well, I guess it’s time to get to work then,” I said as pulled myself up the nearest outcropping of clouds and gave a swift buck into the first cloud, dissipating it with relative ease. Cloud clearing was always something I found rather tedious and a bit boring at times. There really wasn’t much to it after all. Fly to cloud. Buck it. Fly to cloud. Buck it. Repeat as many times as there are clouds. So naturally, my mind wandered as I worked. I wondered what Rainbow Dash had meant about some big meeting, and why I needed to be there. Part of me wondered if I was going to be fired, considering all the tardies I had accrued in the past few months. I shook the thought away, knowing in my right mind that even Rainbow Dash couldn’t be that heartless. Despite her flaws, she was still one of the best bosses in all of Equestria. Still, what could be going on that was so important? Maybe there was some big weather event that was going on. Having only lived in Ponyville for a few months, neither Flitter nor I really knew what the town did for major weather. I sighed, continuing my work and being bored out of my skull while doing it. It really didn’t seem like I was making much progress though, there were far too many clouds to be normal in this piece of sky.

“Ouch!” A yelp from behind me brought me back to reality as I realized that I hadn’t bucked a cloud this time, but another pony. I wheeled about, seeing a dark grey pegasus stallion with a silvery mane and tail flapping his wings and holding his forelegs up to his chest. My eyes widened and I shot over to him.

“Ohmygosh I’m so sorry! Are you alright?” I said frantically. The other pegasus chuckled nervously and nodded.

“Yeah… Yeah I’m okay. Wow, you have a mean kick,” he said, rubbing his chest.

“Sorry. I was kind of lost in my work and didn’t see you there,” I replied, smiling sheepishly at the poor buck.

“It’s alright. I probably shouldn’t have snuck up on you like that,” he said. “You’re Cloudchaser right?” I cocked my head at this. How did he know my name? I thought as I realized I hadn’t seen this pegasus around town at all. Who was he?

“Yeah, that’d be me… but who are you? New in town?” I asked. The pegasus nodded.

“Been commuting here and doing weather work over the last month or so from Cloudsdale. Mostly rain weather. Name’s Thunderlane. My family just decided to move here last week so we could be closer to work. That’s probably why we’ve never seen each other before,” he said, smiling. I nodded as I let my eyes wander a bit. He was pretty toned up for a pegasus. My gaze drifted up his legs to his flank. Are you seriously checking him out? A voice in the back of my head said. I felt a little heat rise in my cheeks as I realized that I sort of was indeed checking out this buck’s flank. His voice snapped me back to paying attention to his face. “Cloudchaser? You alright? You kind of spaced out there a bit.” I shook away my blush, hoping that he hadn’t seen it.

“Oh um… yeah I’m fine. Sorry, I just spaced out again,” I said. “That happens from time to time. So you work with rain weather? That’s pretty cool.” The buck puffed out his chest a bit.

“Yeah, I mean, it’s just a lot of fun is all,” he said, trying to play the essential work of rain management off as unimportant. I giggled at his obvious attempt.

“So what are you doing all the way out here?” I asked curiously. Forget out here… what was this stallion doing talking to me, me of all ponies?! I was uninteresting, even a little boring. Thunderlane pointed at the clouds around me.

“I saw you out here by yourself, bucking all these clouds. Figured I might as well make some friends in this town, and thought I’d offer some help,” he said. Oh? What a gentlecolt, The voice in the back of my head said. Shut up you, I thought in response.

“Don’t you have your own work to get to?” I replied. He shook his head.

“I’m actually off for a few days here. So I’ve got plenty of time,” he said. He flew next to me and bucked a cloud, causing it to dissipate into mist.

“Really?” I said, feeling very confused. “I mean, thank you but I don’t want to impose on your day off.”

“Nah. It’s cool,” he said. “So… Cloudchaser eh? What’s your story? You live here in Ponyville too?” I nodded as we worked side by side, clearing a few more clouds.

“Yeah, I live here with my sister. We’re from Cloudsdale originally though,” I said.

“Really? Gee, I’m sorry it seems like I should know you then,” Thunderlane replied. “You got any family up there I should know?”

“My parents are big hot shot weather ponies up there. They sent my sister and I down here to Ponyville to be out on our own. You know, see the world and all that jazz,” I said. “They thought it would be good for us I guess.”

“Ah,” the stallion said as he bucked another cloud. I couldn’t help but stare just a little. He really was kind of cute. There was still a bit of a nagging thought at the back of my head as to why this stallion was here, taking interest in me. I hesitated for a moment.

“Thunderlane?” I said finally. The dark pegasus looked over at me.

“Yeah?” He said.

“Why are you here? I mean, you didn’t have to come. It’s your day off!” I asked.

”Well… you really looked like you could use the help,” he said. My eye twitched at this. What. I thought, glaring at him.

“What…?” I said blankly.

“Well… I just meant that since it was just you that you would need a little help,” he replied.

“What, you think you could do it better than me or something?” I said, anger flaring in my eyes. “Mister Big Time Rain Weather Pony?”

“No, no. Not at all. Well, I mean I probably could but…” He started to say. My eye twitched again.

“You think I couldn’t clear this sky in ten seconds flat,” I stated with a challenging tone. His eyes widened and he shot me a rakish grin. “What are you smiling for? That was mean, you jerk.”

“Oh. So you want to play it like that do you? Alright then. I challenge you to a race then. We’ll divide the sky over the boutique in half, and the first one to clear their half is the winner,” he explained, pointing at the clouds behind us. “Deal?”

“Alright hotshot. You’re on. But if I win you have to admit that Cloudchaser is a better flier than you,” I said, pointing a hoof at his chest to emphasize my point.

“Deal. And when I win, you have to give me a kiss,” he replied cockily. My eyes went wide instantly. What what what? I thought, trying to process what he had just said. I felt the heat rising back up into my cheeks. I shook it off and stared at Thunderlane. He had a wide grin on his face. Jerk, I thought, sighing. It’s just a kiss I guess. Why am I so hung up on this? I don’t even really buy into all this relationship stuff anyways.

“Fine. You have a deal,” I said quietly. Thunderlane cocked his head at me.

“I’m sorry, what was that?” He said. I groaned.

“If you win, I will give you a kiss,” I said a little louder. He grinned wider. I don’t think I’d ever seen another pony grin as wide as he was. “You’re still a jerk by the way.”

“Point taken. Shall we begin?” He replied. I shook my head.

“It’s just the two of us, we need somepony to judge,” I said, an idea forming in my head. “One second! Be right back.” Before he could say anything else I had begun to zoom down to the ground, landing in front of Rarity’s front door. I pushed open the door to the Boutique and stepped in. “Rarity? You in here?” I called out. I heard the humming of the white mare as she came out from the back room.

“Welcome to Carousel Boutique where everything is chic and trés magnifique! How may I help you today?” Rarity began to say before she saw me. “Oh. Cloudchaser, darling. How do you do today? Come in for a dress or what have you?” I shook my head.

“I uhh… I need some help. You see, there’s this stallion, and…” I began. Rarity cut me off with a titter.

“Oh darling. Of course I’ll help you. It would be a crime against love itself if I were to turn down a friend in her romantic ventures,” she said. I blushed fiercely at this.

“No… that’s not it. He’s just outside, we’re clearing the clouds above your store and he wants to make a challenge of it,” I said, explaining the situation to the white unicorn. “We just need somepony to judge so that it’s fair.”

“Oh. Well I don’t see any problem in that. Are you sure there’s no… romantic undertones to all of this dear? You look a little flustered,” the purple maned mare said.

“I do not!” I shouted reflexively. “I mean… no none at all. He’s just being a jerk who needs to be put in his place that’s all.” Rarity giggled at this.

“Darling, I think it’s well established that all stallions are jerks sometimes. Why this one time, I met Prince Blueblood and sometime I simply must tell you about his atrocious behavior,” Rarity replied as she followed me out into the yard in front of her boutique and I explained the rules of our little challenge. She winked at me as I flew back up to where Thunderlane was waiting. The cocky buck hovered there, his forelegs crossed over his chest.

“Okay, now I’m ready. Rarity is going to start us off and she will declare the winner,” I said cheekily. “That way it’s all fair.”

“Excellent,” Thunderlane said. “See you when you’re done with those clouds.” He sped off to the far end of the cloud cover, taking his place upon a nearby cumulus. I plopped down onto my own starting point as I heard Rarity’s voice drift up from below.

“Alright, now let this be a clean match between you two. No interfering with the other’s side and only stop when your side is fully clear,” She shouted. I looked over at Thunderlane, who grinned and winked at me. What is it with the winking?! I thought as I glared at him. I stretched myself out a bit, getting ready to pour on the speed.

“Ready, on your marks… get set… go!” Rarity yelled up to us. I kicked off the cloud, pouring enough energy into it from my launch to clear it from the sky at the same time as I surged forward. Cloud after cloud fell before my victorious hooves, and I grinned widely as I came upon my last set of clouds. I couldn’t really hear what Thunderlane was doing, but I’m sure he was eating my dust! I bucked the few clouds I had left and spun about, hearing the clopping of hooves below from Rarity. Yes! I did it! I --- I began to think, my brain sputtering out of control as I saw my opponent. His entire side was completely devoid of clouds, and I realized that part of the clopping of hooves I had heard before was coming from him as well. He even had that huge grin on his face again. Jerk! I thought as I floated over to him.

“Well, that certainly was entertaining,” he said, chuckling a bit. “Didn’t think it would take you that long, that’s for sure.” I glared at him.

“Laugh it up tough guy,” I said as we floated down to Rarity. The white mare had a bright smile on her face as we landed next to her.

“Well, the winner by a mere five seconds is mister… umm I don’t believe I caught your name?” She said to the dark pegasus.

“Oh, it’s Thunderlane,” he said shyly. I noticed his eyes taking in the sight of the demure mare. They even drifted down past her mane and all the way down her flanks. Oh. That’s just great. So he’s a chauvinistic jerk too! I thought. More power to him though. Rarity’s way high maintenance. I don’t care one bit that he’s looking at her. No sirree.

“Mister Thunderlane, and I might I say what a dashing color your mane is. It goes well with your coat darling,” Rarity replied.

“Th-Thanks?” Thunderlane stuttered. I nearly burst into laughter right then and there. Oh this is priceless! One oodle of attention from a pretty mare and he turns to putty! I thought.

“No, thank you. I must be off now; I’ll leave the sordid little details of your wager to you. Do come into the Boutique sometime though darling. The things I could do with a suit for you would be simply divine!” Rarity said, her eyes lighting up at the possibilities. She gave me a little wink and stepped up next to me, whispering in my ear.

“Knock em dead,” she said quietly before trotting off back into her store, leaving us quite alone not only in her yard, but in the street adjacent to her domicile. In fact, it seemed like everypony had pretty well cleared out of this part of town, probably for mid day lunch breaks and the like. Just my luck, I thought as I turned back to see Thunderlane, standing there staring dreamily after her. I chuckled nervously as he snapped back to attention when he realized he was being watched.

“Ho there lover boy,” I said jokingly. The buck’s eyes averted to the ground and he looked away for the moment.

“Uhh… right. Sorry, just a little distracted,” he said. I giggled.

“Right. Distracted,” I replied. A faint blush rose to his cheeks, just barely but it was still there. “So. Looks like you won, you big jerk.” I emphasized the last part to get his attention. His smug demeanor returned and his blush disappeared almost instantly.

“Well, of course. I mean, I was glad to help you out of course, but there’s still the matter of my prize for winning,” he said confidently. I rolled my eyes at him.

“Ugh. Fine. You did win fair and square after all,” I said, stepping up to the silver haired buck. I reached in and swiftly gave him a kiss on the cheek. The moment my lips connected, I felt the heat rising off of him as an even bigger blush graced his face. I wasn’t there long though. I pulled away a few minute seconds later and turned away, hoping the stallion didn’t see my own blush that was currently heating my ears. The nerve of this buck! I thought angrily. I turned back after several cold and silent seconds, staring at the stallion.

“There, happy now?” I said shakily. He nodded mutely. “Good. Well look at the time, I should probably get going. Gotta get back to the office and get my assignment for the rest of the day!” I said quickly as I darted off past the silver maned pegasus. I shot off into the air, leaving him behind standing there alone in the street. Stupid jerk. Getting me to kiss him like that, I thought. I had only just met the guy and already he had rubbed me the wrong way. Still, I didn’t know why I was so flustered about all this. I’d never been one for relationships, and I had never really pondered the whole idea of romance. I groaned, trying to push the thoughts out of my head as I reached the Weather Office. I trotted in and clicked my timecard, signing out for lunch. I looked up at Flitter’s card. She hadn’t been back yet. With nothing better to than to wait for my sister, I sat down in our waiting room and looked down at my hooves. I struggled with trying to not think of a certain silver haired buck. Every time he came up, I felt conflicted. I was certainly angry with him about the whole situation. Not only had he managed to embarrass me by proving my flying skills weren’t as good as his, but then to top it off to have me kiss him afterwards? I was downright furious about that part! But then there was another part of me trying to logically explain what had happened, the part of me I wasn’t sure if I really wanted to be listening to right then.

“Sis?” A voice called. I looked up to see Flitter trotting in, a bright smile on her face. The moment she saw me though, her expression turned to one of concern. “Hey, what’s wrong? You alright?” I nodded.

“Yeah… I’m fine. Long morning, I’ll tell you later alright? Let’s just go get some lunch,” I replied. She nodded, knowing to not prod any further and went over to punch out of the office. I put on as big of a smile as I could and followed behind my sister. Flitter was chatting excitedly about her morning. I really wasn’t in the mood for much conversation, since a certain pegasus jerk kept popping into my head. As we landed at the restaurant Flitter asked again if I was doing okay and I smiled and nodded. No sense in getting her all worked up over this, I thought. Lunch came and went without much more talk on the subject. I mostly stayed quiet as Flitter continued her animated chatter about everything from new dresses to Winter. Stallions, I had thought. Rarity was right. They’re all jerks. Amazingly enough, we got back on time, and I punched in just as Rainbow Dash came out of office. The rainbow maned mare smiled at me as she walked by.

“Have a good morning Cloudchaser?” She said. I nodded shakily.

“Y-yes,” I said, biting back a comment on my unexpected help. Rainbow smiled.

“Well, I’m changing up your afternoon a little. We need you to head over to Sweet Apple Acres and help put together a light shower for Applejack. I’d be over there myself, but Fluttershy needs me for something else and I still have to get ready for our meeting tonight,” the cyan pegasus said.

“Oh, okay. Sure thing Rainbow Dash. I’ll get right over there,” I said.

“Good. Tell your sister she’s been signed up for it too. You’re going to be working with a relatively new guy, so be nice to him alright?” Rainbow replied as she pushed the door open. As she flew off, I groaned. There was only one relatively new guy that I knew of, and I had just left him an hour ago standing in front of Carousel Boutique. I shook off the feeling of dread and called out for my sister, who was nowhere to be seen.

“Flitter!!” I yelled as loud as I could. Thankfully every other pony was out of the office at the moment. My sister popped her head from behind a chair. She had her headphones on with her little Trotman player she bought with her last paycheck. She pulled the headphones off and smiled.

“Yeah Sis?” She said sheepishly.

“We’re being reassigned for the afternoon to Sweet Apple Acres,” I said, motioning for her to follow me. With a nod of acknowledgement, Flitter stepped in behind me and put her headphones back on, dancing on air as we took off. Within a few minutes of flight time we arrived over Sweet Apple Acres, where the farm’s proprietor Applejack awaited. We landed next to the orange mare as she tipped her hat at us.

“Afternoon you two,” she said, smiling wide. “Y’all here for the rain?”

“That would be us. So, where are we setting up this rain shower at?” I asked, turning the conversation to the task at hand. Applejack pointed with a hoof towards one of the many apple orchards that the Apple family cared for on their property.

“The south field needs the shower time real bad. Rain ain’t been too even lately and it’s sorely missing out on some much needed downpour,” the orange earth pony said, cocking her head. “Wasn’t there supposed to be three of you?” I looked around. She was right. Where was that big jerk anyways? Maybe he was still standing in Rarity’s yard, all dumbfounded over my little kiss. It would serve him right for embarrassing me like that.

“Yeah, supposed to some new guy,” I replied. Maybe we’d get lucky and he wouldn’t show up. A passing shadow and the flutter of wings told me otherwise. Thunderlane landed in between us, looking very confident with himself, at least until he saw me. He shook it off and turned to Applejack.

“Sorry I’m late. I uhh… ran into a spot of trouble on the way over,” he said. Applejack nodded and the stallion moved over to where we were standing. “Uh… hey Cloudchaser. Who’s your friend?” I glared at him.

“Sis? You know this guy?” Flitter asked curiously. I nodded.

“We met earlier this morning,” I said flatly. “Flitter, meet Thunderlane. Thunderlane, this is my sister Flitter.” The stallion waved and my sister giggled. She winked at me. What is it with the winking?!! I thought, groaning. Thunderlane rubbed the back of his head with his hoof nervously. “I thought you were off for a few days,” I continued.

“Yeah about that… look… I wanted to umm…” he stammered. I shot him a glare that shut him up instantly. Flitter looked over at me with a concerned look on her face. I could already tell I was going to have some explaining to do when we got home that evening.

“Save it,” I said. “We have a job to do, so let’s go do it shall we? So we’re not wasting Miss Applejack’s time?” Thunderlane started to say something else, but stopped as he must have decided to not press his luck. Was he trying to apologize to me? I thought as I turned away from the buck and shot up into the sky. Flitter followed after, trying to get my attention over how I’d been acting. I waved her away as I came upon the first rain cloud and began moving it into place over the orchard’s south field. Rain clouds, unlike normal white fluffy clouds, all came from one source: Cloudsdale. Like most weather in Equestria, rain clouds were manufactured by the Weather Ponies in Cloudsdale and then shipped out all over the country to provide rain. I distinctly remembered Mom and Dad telling me how the whole process worked. Every year they got all the pegasi together from one town and they would funnel all the water up from a reservoir or lake up to Cloudsdale where the water would be used to make more rain clouds. As I moved another cloud into position, my sister and Thunderlane were also moving in their own clouds. I remembered that Mom and Dad said they picked a new town every year and that it was almost like some sort of competition. My eyes went wide when I had a realization.

The meeting. Of course. How stupid of me to think otherwise! I thought with a groan. Rainy season was coming up and it was getting close to the time when the rain clouds would need to be made to provide rain to all of Equestria! Naturally, Ponyville would get its chance to take part in the games. That must have been why Rainbow was so serious this morning. It was a great honor to be picked to provide rainwater to ponies everywhere. I then groaned even louder as I remembered that they would naturally put Rainbow Dash in charge of the whole thing. The cyan mare’s competitiveness streak would surely be the end of all of us. By the time I had gotten finished processing all of this information, we had completed our task of putting together the rain clouds. It was a nice little rain shower, perfect for getting Applejack’s trees some much needed nutrients. All that needed to happen now was the get the rain started.

“Alright, I’m gonna go in and hit the clouds and get them going,” Flitter said as she zoomed towards the cloud formation. It was then that I saw it: a storm cloud. Not just any storm cloud, but a nasty black storm cloud. I panicked. How did it get there? Did I accidentally stick that in there when I was so lost in thought? Storm clouds were notorious for being highly dangerous. The only pegasus I personally knew that could buck on a storm cloud and live was Ditzy Doo, and even then she usually shocked herself silly. I moved to call out to Flitter to try and stop her.

“Flitter!” I yelled. It was too late. The grey pegasus mare hit the edge of the cloud formation in a dash, followed by a swift buck. The clouds rippled with energy and I saw the storm cloud begin to jolt into the other clouds around it. All the color drained from my face when I realized that Flitter hadn’t seen the offending cumulus yet. I buzzed my wings, surging forward past a very surprised Thunderlane to try and catch my sister, who was now happily hopping from cloud to cloud. I started calling out again when I neared the accumulation of rain clouds, but a massive jolt of thunder and lightning ripped through the air and cut me off. Rain began to pour from the clouds onto the orchard below, completely drenching me as I scanned the skies for my wayward sister. The light from the next lightning strike nearly blinded me and I found myself disoriented. Where is she? I thought. Where are you Flitter? When my eyes cleared I couldn’t believe what I saw. Instead of the single storm cloud, there were now several interspersed with the normal rain clouds as the storm began to build and grow. Not only that, Flitter was nowhere in sight. I flew up, hoping that maybe she had been smart and flown away from the storm.

“Flitter!” I yelled again, but the sound of the wind and rain drowned out any words I could muster. I was cold, wet, and downright scared. Another lightning strike stabbed the tops of Applejack’s trees, the tumultuous bout of thunder following it nearly knocking me out of the air. Nothing happened, but I realized that next time might not be so lucky. Oh no. The storm’s too close to the trees, I thought. I was at a complete loss at what to do, trying to think about what Mom and Dad had told me before about handling rogue storms. My mind drew a blank however since the absence of my closest family member was reigning supreme inside my head. I buzzed back and forth, paying as close attention as I could to the building storm. To be truthful, it was getting out of hand fast.

I called out for Flitter again. By then I was completely soaked to the bone, my teeth chattering and my body exhausted from all the flying. If I make it out of this, I’m going to need a long warm bath and a bed, I thought. I spun about at a strange sound, thinking for a moment I had heard Flitter calling out to me. There was nothing in sight besides more grey sky and the rain itself, which had picked up and had now turned into a full on torrent of water dumping from the clouds above. I froze, unable to think about what to do next. My eyes flittered back and forth from the storm and the ground, unable to decide where to go. I know Flitter better than any other pony; she would go get help or something… right? I thought as I surged upwards once more, trying to get myself above the cloud cover where I might be able to do some damage to this thing.

I heard the sound again, almost sounding like somepony calling out to me. I couldn’t see where it was coming from, but it was getting louder. I dodged another lightning strike as I soared upward towards the formation, which had become completely blackened. My vision began to get hazy the closer I got to the clouds, the rain pounding down into me with wild abandon. I just had to find Flitter, I had to. She was my sister! I was going to get this thing under control and make sure she was safe! I was ---

“Cloudchaser!!!” A voice called out, cutting through the rain right next to me. A pair of hooves reached out and grabbed a hold of me. I struggled a bit, but between the cold and the beating from the storm, my body was pretty much ready to give up. I turned my head back and saw Thunderlane. His front legs were wrapped around my body as he surged forward, a determined look on his face.

“Th-Th-Thunderlane?!” I managed to chatter. “Where’s Flitter? Is she alright? Have you seen her?” The stallion nodded as he pushed past another lightning strike.

“She’s fine, but knocked out. I managed to get her out before things got too bad. Are you alright?” He yelled over the roar of the wind. I tried to nod in response, but was too tired to do anything but try and meekly acknowledge the stallion’s question. “Chase? Aww… come on stay with me. Just hang on, we’re almost there!” My eyes closed and I felt the patter of the rain begin to lighten as we broke free of the storm. I felt Thunderlane’s hooves remove themselves from my body as I was deposited onto a nearby cloud next to my sister. I opened my eyes to see the stallion turning back towards the storm. He was getting ready to take back off.

“Wait!!” I called out. He looked back for a moment, a pained look on his face.

“No time!” He replied. “Somepony’s gotta get this thing under control before it wipes out the orchard!”

“You can’t! You’ll get hurt!” I shouted at him. Stupid stupid stupid stubborn mule! My brain screamed. He gave a slight cough and then cocked a grin. I realized that he was pretty well soaked and tired too.

“They don’t call me Thunderlane for nothing!” He said, soaring off into the sky. He slammed into the side of the storm formation, bursting apart a particularly nasty black cloud. He dodged the lightning that expelled from the cloud and sped off to hit another. Truth be told, it was actually rather impressive. A groan from beside me indicated that Flitter had awoken. I turned over to her and held onto her tight, tears beginning to flow freely from my eyes.

“Sis?” She said weakly. “What happened?”

“There was a storm cloud tucked inside somehow, Thunderlane… Thunderlane pulled us out of there when I went in looking for you,” I said, my teeth still feeling very chatty due to my soaking wet coat and mane. “I thought… I thought I lost you.”

“I’m alright, Sis. I’m fine,” Flitter said, pushing up into a sitting position. “Where’s Thunderlane?” I pointed back at the storm, forcing Flitter into full awareness mode as her eyes locked upon the dark pegasus stallion who was fighting the thunder and lightning. “What?! He’s crazy! That thing is monstrous!”

“I know. He’s going to need some help. Flits, I want you to fly as fast as you can and get Rainbow Dash. I’m going to go try and help Thunderlane,” I said determinedly, wiping my tears away. Flitter began to protest.

“You can’t do that, you almost died out there yourself!” She said.

“And if I don’t, he might die too. He can’t do this by himself, and Dash is the best chance we have at beating it for good,” I said. “She’ll be over at Fluttershy’s place.” Flitter groaned.

“Alright, but be careful” She said after a moment, getting up and stretching her wings out. I grinned.

“I’ll be alright. I’m more worried about this thing causing a fire on Applejack’s orchard,” I said. “Besides, I owe that jerk some payback for earlier.” Flitter managed a small giggle at this.

“He’s kind of cute by the way,” She said, grinning broadly at me. I facehoofed. “You have some explaining to do later missy!” She said, and hit the air, soaring off towards Fluttershy’s cottage. I stood and took another look over at the menacing storm, its rapid growth dwarfing the damage Thunderlane had done, which was significant. Bracing myself, I pushed off and sped along, heading for the notch in the ill tempered cloud formation. I could see Thunderlane at the very edge of the beast, trying his very best to dissipate what clouds he could while the storm did its best to defy him. I raced past the stallion, surprising him as I bucked into one of the storm clouds, blasting it into harmless mist.

“Chase?!” Thunderlane called out. Since when did I have a nickname? I thought, snorting at the buck.

“I’m good. We need to get this thing under control. Just like earlier, if we work together we can do this!” I shouted back. The wind had begun to pick up as we hovered on the precipice of the storm.

“I… Alright, but I wanted to tell you something!” He replied. “I’m sorry! For earlier. It was rude of me to embarrass you like that. I just wanted to tell you that’s all.”

“Is this really the time?!” I asked, groaning. Shut up you, he’s apologizing! The voice in the back of my head said. The stallion nodded and I facehooved. “Fine. I’m… I’m sorry too. I shouldn’t have just left you there, and I should have been a little nicer to you. When we get out of this… do you want to just start over?” He grinned.

“Deal. Friends?” He said, extending a hoof. I smiled and took it in return, shaking it.

“Friends,” I said, before turning back to the storm. “You ready?” He nodded and we took wing once more, heading right into the heart of the beast.

**************************

“Of all the stupid things you could have done, you had to go and get a storm cloud?!” Rainbow Dash yelled. I looked down at my forehooves and sighed. We were sitting inside Dash’s office, being thoroughly berated over the incident at Sweet Apple Acres. Shortly after Thunderlane and I entered the storm to try and clear up what we could, Dash showed up with Flitter and few of the other weather pegasi. Together we managed to completely get rid of the thing. Nopony truly knew which of the three of us had moved that storm cloud in, but I had a sneaking suspicion it had been me while I was lost in thought. If it hadn’t been for Thunderlane, we’d have ended up being hurt badly or worse. Thankfully, Applejack wasn’t angry about the mix-up, since none of her trees had been destroyed during the incident. All three of us apologized to the country mare, but she waved us off. From her perspective, it made sense. We had handled the problem, we were honest about it, and her crops had gotten the rain they needed.

Dash on the other hand, was completely ballistic over the incident. It was times like this that I wished she wasn’t my boss. Dash always expected the best from her team no matter what, and mistakes like this one were not well received with the cyan mare. Thunderlane and I had been brought into her office afterwards for a little talk.

“Look, I know that you two had some sort of… run in this morning. I heard it from Rarity when I was over at Fluttershy’s,” Dash continued. I gawked. Of course Rarity would be the one to gossip a little about things going on around town, especially if it had to do with her idea of ‘romantic ventures.’ I just hadn’t considered that it would get around so fast. I wondered who else Rarity had told. I groaned when I realized that the unicorn had probably been watching my little kiss as well. “Is this going to be a problem for you two?”

“N-n-no Rainbow Dash. Definitely not,” I stammered, stealing a glance over the stallion. He was silent. I sighed and looked back up at the cyan mare.

“Good. I don’t want to have to bench either of you, with how busy we’re all going to be in the next few weeks,” Dash said, checking her clock for the time. “Look, it’s almost time to head over to Twi’s place for the meeting. Why don’t you two go get yourself dried off before you come over?” She reached into her locker, bringing out a nice warm towel and tossed it my way. I caught the towel with my teeth, laying it over my back to wait until we got outside. I nodded, nudging Thunderlane in the shoulder. He slinked out of Rainbow’s office, ears low and mane flat. I said my thanks to Dash as I left, the cyan mare nodding and winking at me. What is it with the winking?! I thought once more, sighing as I stepped up next to a very sullen looking Thunderlane.

“Wow, she was not happy,” he muttered, earning a chuckle from me.

“You’ll get used to it. She’s pretty competitive, but she’s got her heart in the right place,” I replied as we exited the Weather Office’s front doors. Flitter was waiting outside for us. She had already dried off, and had a bright smile on her face. I smiled in return and moved in, giving her a spine-crushing hug.

“You sure you’re alright?” I asked as I let her go.

“Oh stop. Seriously, I’m fine Sis, really!” Flitter replied, chuckling. I sighed.

“I’m just glad you’re okay. Hey look, start heading on over to the library for the big meeting. I’ll be over there shortly, alright?” I said. Flitter nodded and looked over at Thunderlane.

“Thank you for getting me and my sister out of there,” she said, giving the stallion a quick peck on the cheek. He chuckled nervously.

“N-no problem,” he replied. Flitter grinned and winked at me. Why do they keep doing that?! I thought. Before she turned and took off, she mouthed at me You’ve got some explaining to do later. I groaned as she began heading towards the opposite end of town to where Twilight Sparkle lived in the town library. I looked at the stallion beside me. He was waving bye to Flitter with a smile on his face.

“Hey umm… you know I never did get to thank you properly for saving my life,” I said, grinning.

“Oh, that’s… that’s okay. I’m just glad you’re alright is all,” He said, looking away for the moment. I reached up and pulled his face towards mine and planted my lips on his for a brief moment. It was…awkward, warm, and a little wet. But it felt kind of nice. While I’d never been one for this romantic hullabaloo, there was just something about this buck that I couldn’t place a hoof on. He certainly wasn’t difficult to look at, and while he was cocksure and a bit of a jerk, he was genuinely a nice guy deep down. I pulled away, blushing fiercely at what I had just done. Thunderlane on the other hand, had his eyes closed and was still engrossed in the now non-existent kiss.

“See you at the meeting?” I said, breaking him out of his stupor and back to reality. He had a goofy grin on his face. I laughed a bit at how silly he was being. He rubbed the back of his neck nervously as I took the towel to begin drying my wings off.

“S-s-sure thing Chase. I’ll see you there,” he said. I took the towel and ran it over my wings, feeling a little bit better as they began to dry off. I grinned and tossed the towel at him, hitting him square in the face with it.

“See you Thunder,” I said as I stretched and shook my wings out and took to the sky, heading towards the library. As I flew, I pondered what my life might be like with the cocky stallion at my side. He’d already proven himself to be a loyal friend in the face of danger. I sighed, a deep pit forming in the middle of my stomach as I came to a harsh realization. One that I wasn’t totally sure I wanted to address at the moment, but couldn’t get out of my head for the life of me.

Am I falling in love with him?

--------

Next Time!

Training begins! Will Cloudchaser be able to keep her wing power up and stay in the game? Will Thunderlane do anything else but cough? Will Snowflake show up and say “YEAAHH!!”? Find out next time on “Flying Through the Storm Chapter 2: Training Hard”!

Author's Note:

Well.  This is my first attempt at really writing a shipfic.  You see, I’ve tried my hand at this where I randomly generated a ship with Thunderlane and Spitfire, but that never got published and it never really panned out for me.  I had a hard time wrapping my mind around Spitfire’s character, and thus I abandoned it.  I’m also an author of a Fallout: Equestria sidefic, so that was also taking precedence at the time.

Then I hit upon a streak of inspiration.  I kept Thunderlane, because I really liked his character even though no one practically knows who he is other than that he’s “that coughing pegasi from Hurricane Fluttershy.”  But instead of Spits, I hit upon using Cloudchaser as my main character, along with her sister Flitter.  (At least that’s my interpretation of the two)

And wow.  This came out of it.  I’m very pleased with it, and I do plan on continuing with this.  Cloudchaser came out much better than I could have ever imagined, and I’m very happy.

That being said, I’m always happy to take any criticism or feedback on my work.  That’s what helps me grow, after all.

Now, time for the plugs!  First off, this isn’t my first time around the block on writing fanfics.  I am currently in the middle of writing a FOE Sidefic known as “Fallout Equestria: Starlight” which at the time of this writing has accrued over 9000 views and is over 220k words overall!  That right there is an accomplishment!  If you like FOE sidefics, please feel free to head over and check it out, I greatly appreciate all new readers!  I also have a tumblr set up for Radiant Star, my main character of Starlight: http://askradiantstar.tumblr.com

I’d like to thank good old Wirepony for his editing work.  He’s my editor for Starlight, and is a fantastic editor to have around.

One of the things I like to do with Starlight is to plug other people’s stories, because I like to share what I like to read with others, and that tradition is not going to stop here.  Obviously though, instead of plugging FOE stories here, we’ll be plugging shipfics instead!  So.  The first one ever for me is a neat little story that you might have heard of called “Mendacity” by Dromicosuchus.  It’s a neat story where Bon Bon is actually a changeling that’s lived in Ponyville with Lyra.  It’s really good, so check it out!

Updated Notes!

So… if you haven’t noticed by now, some things about this chapter are a little different.  I’m currently in the process of rewriting the first three chapters of ‘Flying Through the Storm’ based on the great and powerful feedback from the EQD pre-reader I received my submission back from.  Let’s just say, there were some things that definitely needed brushing up on.  Rest assured, the story itself and the plot is not changing, just shoring things up here and there to make things flow better and to reveal things in a better manner.
-V

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