• Published 1st Sep 2019
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Who Is Pinkie Pie? - Irrespective

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3. - You Should Introduce Me to Her Sometime

* * Ω * *

“For the last time, Dash, it’s not a date!” Long Run brushed past the smirking mare and checked to make sure he had his coin pouch. “It’s a friendly get-together and free cookies with Pinkie Pie, nothing more.”

“Sure, sure,” Rainbow drawled. “Why wouldn’t you be interested in her cookies?”

Long paused and gave her a flat look. “I don’t quite know how to take that.”

“Just admit it, birdbrain! You’re going on a date! It’s a restaurant, you’ll be with a mare, you’re going to learn things about her by talking, and you’re going to tell her about yourself! If you’ve got all of the ingredients for a batch of cookies, don’t try to say you’re making a pie!”

“Fine, it’s a date,” he huffed. “Whatever it takes to get you to leave me alone about this. I gotta go. If you’re going to stay here, go put on that maid’s outfit and take care of the dishes for me. Make sure you take pictures.”

“No way. I’m not cleaning up your messes,” she replied as she walked outside with him. “Especially since you could care less if I actually clean anything while wearing that. Take care of it yourself.”

“So help me,” he muttered. “One day.”

“Keep dreaming, Long.”

“Are you going to make this a threesome, then?” he asked as they both took to the air.

“Nah, I got a Wonderbolts meeting to get to, actually. But I want to hear all of the juicy details when I get back, okay?”

“Well, that depends on what you’ll give me for the information, doesn’t it?”

Rainbow Dash rolled her eyes. “Nice try. Oh, I just remembered. Captain Spitfire wants to know if you’re still coming to teach your class at the Academy next week.”

“Yeah, I still have that on my calendar. I’ll fly in next Tuesday. I think I’ll take your new recruits on a happy little flight over to Las Pegasus and back. That should give their wings a good stretch, right?”

“A cross-country flight will do it for sure. I’ll catch you later, Long.”

Long Run watched Rainbow bank to the right for a moment before he mentally reviewed his upcoming schedule. After the Wonderbolts, he was scheduled to teach a long-distance flight class in Cloudsdale for two weeks, and then he was off to Applewood and a training class for a batch of stunt doubles.

He grumbled a bit and banked towards Ponyville. While he loved being a freelance flight instructor, he did wonder if he was putting too much time into his work, and not enough time into himself. He couldn’t even remember when his last vacation had been, nor where he had gone.

That was a sure sign that he needed to reduce his workload. The last thing anypony needed was to burn out at a high altitude, and the more he thought about it, the more he realized he was reaching his limit.

Long had settled his mind on the matter by the time he touched down in front of Sugarcube Corner. Anything on his schedule after Applewood would be moved, and he was going to take a full month off. It would do him good to unwind, and it would give him a chance to figure out how to score with Princess Twilight, and thus force Rainbow into a frilly Rarity dress.

He chuckled to himself as he pushed the door open. He would never force Rainbow to make good on that, nor would he make any sort of effort to get lucky with the Princess of Friendship for that sole reason. Even if he somehow did manage to defy the odds against his success with the Princess, he wanted a relationship that was based on something more substantial than a one night stand. Besides, Twilight Sparkle was far too uptight and devoted to her studies, from what he had heard. He needed a mare who was more laid back, who was willing to take the time to just enjoy life and not have to dissect every moment of it.

He smiled and waved to the abundantly pink mare who was beckoning to him from a table in the far corner of the store. Maybe he had no chance with Twilight, but Pinkie Pie seemed nice enough. There was a chance the two of them would hit it off, and then he could trade in his wings for a baker’s apron.

Or just enjoy the most amazing baked goods ever. My waistline may never recover.

“Hi, Long!” Pinkie motioned with a hoof to the chair in front of her. “It’s very nice to see you again!”

“Thanks. Good to see you, too,” Long offered. “I didn’t keep you waiting, did I?”

“Oh, not at all! I just got here, actually.”

“You did?” Long asked. “I thought you lived here.”

“Oh! Right!” Pinkie laughed and waved a dismissive hoof. “Silly me! I meant to say I’ve been out shopping, and just got back from that! Gotta make sure there’s enough baking powder and vinegar!”

“Can’t have too much of that,” Long agreed. “So, where are those snickerdoodles you promised?”

“They should just be coming out of the oven now. The Cakes were kind enough to keep an eye on them for me while I waited for you. Let me go check and see if they’re done.”

Before Long could properly respond, Pinkie Pie disappeared, leaving behind a pink cloud that hung in the air for a brief moment. “Well, she’s definitely assertive, I’ll give her that. I wonder if she’s always like this.”

“Yeah, pretty much,” she replied from behind him, and he yelped in alarm. “Twilight says it’s ‘Pinkie being Pinkie,’ but Rarity says it’s ‘unsettling’ and Dashie calls it ‘straight up creepy.’ Still, birds gotta fly and fish gotta swim, right? If I stop being Pinkie, then who am I?”

“That is a rather deep question that I’m not sure I want to get into,” he said.

“Me neither. So, instead of that, let’s talk about something nice while we enjoy my cookies. How about that sky today! Talk about blue. Are you responsible for any of that?”

Long smiled as a plate of delicious-smelling snickerdoodles and a tall glass of perfectly chilled milk was placed in front of him. “I’m not much of a weather pony. That’s more Dash’s thing.”

“You don’t do weather?” Pinkie asked after stuffing a whole cookie into her mouth.

“I can, if need be. I’ve got the permits for it. But I was never much good at cloud manipulation. I prefer to fly around them, if I can help it.”

“So, what do you do for a job? Rainbow Dash has mentioned you fly a lot.”

“Officially, I’m a freelance flight instructor. I travel all around Equestria, mostly teaching long-distance flight and endurance training, but I dabble in stunts and basic flying techniques as needed. That’s why I’m gone so much, sad to say.”

“Oh, isn’t that dangerous?” asked Pinkie.

“Not really.” Long lifted a wing and rotated it carefully. “Done right, the worst danger I face is the occasional sore muscle.”

“It sounds like your work is really super-duper important, though. Are there a lot of pegasi who need to take your class?”

“I hope so! Otherwise I’ll be out of a job,” he laughed. “Truthfully, there’s more than enough work for me, so I’ll never be hurting for employment. On the rare occasion when I don’t have anything to do, I offer free flight classes for foals—or for adults who never learned the right way. You’d be surprised how often that happens.”

“Really? How could a pegasus learn how to fly wrong?”

“The problem is most flight instructors take a one-size-fits-all approach to teaching, but that works about as well as one-size-fits-all shoes. In fact, I suspect that’s what happened with Muffins, and why Scootaloo can’t fly.”

Pinkie leaned in and gave him a quizzical look. “You think Scootaloo was taught wrong?”

“Not wrong,” he said slowly. “Just… wrong for her, if that makes any sort of sense. I can’t say for sure, but I would bet that there’s some sort of abnormality in her flight and control muscles that hasn't been diagnosed, so a cookie-cutter approach to teaching won’t work with her.”

“But the only way that could be is if there’s something wrong with her central thaumic vein,” Pinkie said, her hoof stirring the straw in her milk as she thought. “But wouldn’t have that been caught by a doctor by now? She’s seen, like, every specialist there is.”

“Has she?” he asked. “I’d need to look at her medical file, then. I’ve worked with fillies and colts like her before, and a lot of doctors just pass off their flightlessness as thaumic hypotonia and then tell the parents there’s nothing that can be done. There’s ways to work around it, but it often takes a lot of time and therapy. You have to get down and retrain individual tendons and muscle strands, sometimes.”

“What about somepony like Fluttershy? Do you think you could help her to be a stronger flyer?”

“Fluttershy?” Long tapped the side of his glass as he thought. “I haven't ever really talked with her but she would be an interesting training case. From what little I’ve seen of her flying, her problem isn’t anything physical. It’s all mental.”

“Oh.” Pinkie slunk back, as if she was trying to hide behind her mane. “Why do you say that?”

“For the record, Fluttershy is a sweetheart, and I love her,” he said, but then he blinked. “In a figurative way,” he added quickly. “I’ve yet to meet a pony who is nicer than her. If I were to ever break my leg—or a wing—I’d rather go to her than to a doctor to be patched up.”

Pinkie perked right back up and giggled. “Really? You would?”

“She’s a peach, pure and simple. I knew her back in flight school, but not as well as I knew Dash, and I’m still ashamed to say that I wasn’t very nice to her.”

Pinkie gasped loudly. “You weren't one of those cruel bullies who picked on her, were you?”

“No, no!” he quickly said, and he hurriedly pressed on in the hopes of getting away from that furious scowl. “I didn’t pick on her, but I didn’t try to help her, either. At least not as much as I should have. We talked a bit here and there, and I remember thinking that her shyness was kinda cute. But when the bullies started teasing her, I could never find the courage to say something. I wish I’d been better about that.”

“Oh. Well, I bet she would understand why. Bullies are the worst.”

“Anyway, Fluttershy is actually quite a strong flyer, but not in the typical way. Sure, most pegasi can fly circles around her, but she can’t be beaten for endurance.”

“Really?”

“Yeah. Other than Dash, and maybe the Princesses, I don’t know of anypony who could stay aloft as long as her, myself included. If there was a way to get her over the fears—and with a little bit of training—I really think she could be a member of the Wonderbolts.”

“How do you know that?”

“A quirk of my job is that I can’t watch a pony just fly anymore,” Long said, and he settled into what Dash would call his ‘lecture’ mode. “I watch how they flap their wings, what muscles are being stretched and relaxed, and all of the other little details that go into flying, even if i’m not trying to. So I have inadvertently studied Fluttershy, and her technique is flawless. I would love to capture her method on film, somehow, and then use that to show others how they’re doing it wrong. There are no wasted motions, no inefficient positioning of the wing, no incorrect spread of feathers. A lot of ponies see flying as some crude, mechanical process, but Fluttershy has the process down to a delicate art. It’s poetry in motion, if you know what you’re looking at.”

“Have you ever told her any of this?” Pinkie asked, and Long shook his head.

“No, and I doubt I ever will, so please don’t mention any of this to her. That would be the most awkward conversation I could ever possibly have. ‘Excuse me, Fluttershy. I’m sure you don’t remember me, but we kinda sorta hung out in flight camp years ago and I want to film you flying. Do you mind?’ She’d probably think I’m some kind of psychopathic serial stalker.”

“You never know unless you try!” Pinkie said in sing-song.

“I’ll keep that in mind,” he said with a chuckle. “But enough about me gushing about other ponies. Tell me about you! It’s only fair that I learn more about my gracious host.”

“Aw, aren’t you just the sweetest thing?” Pinkie said. “Let’s see. It all started on a rock farm, when I was just a itty bitty teeny weenie twinkie Pinkie…”

* * Ω * *

Rainbow Dash idly tapped a rear hoof as she tried to listen to Captain Spitfire’s presentation. At the moment, they were going over next year’s flight shows, and everypony was offering their suggestions on what flight maneuvers should be included in the routines.

Normally, this was a topic that she had great interest in, and she had offered several suggestions during the meeting, despite being the newest member of the group. But whenever somepony else would share their ideas, the dashing young flyer found her thoughts drifting back to her hometown, and specifically to two friends who had just been introduced to each other.

Try as she might, she couldn’t help but wonder how the date between Long Run and Pinkie Pie was going. She had already decided that she would pound Long into the ground like a railroad spike if he had been anything less than a perfect gentlecolt, but she was curious to see what he thought of Pinkie’s flamboyant personality and her gift of unrelenting gab.

Thankfully, this meeting was only to get some preliminary ideas, and it was just about over. She wouldn’t have to wait much longer to get the answers she sought, and to give Long a hard time if it turned out that he actually liked Pinkie.

She didn’t think they would move much beyond friends, though. Long was a patient and tolerant stallion, but Dash knew Pinkie’s extended levels of extreme hyperactivity would probably grate on his nerves. He prefered his energy to be controlled, directed, and Pinkie was anything but.

“Hey, Crash!” Spitfire called out. “Did you decide to check out early on us?”

“I’m here,” she replied. “Fleetfoot is on to something with the double roll-off-the-top, but we’ll have to watch the spacing coming out of it. Soarin will bellyflop onto Blaze otherwise and take the rest of us out while he’s going down.”

Soarin blushed a little as the other Wonderbolts snickered. “That only happened one time, you guys!”

“Crash does make a good point,” Spitfire said with a grin. “We’ll sort that out later. Let’s meet again in two weeks, and I’ll get some flight plans drawn up. You’re dismissed.”

Rainbow took a moment to stretch her wings as she stood, and a smile came as Fleetfoot called out to her. “Hey, Fleet. What’s up?”

“Me and Soarin were going to go get something to eat from the mess hall real quick. You wanna come with us?”

“Can’t.” Rainbow shook her head. “Wish I could, but I gotta get home and take care of a few things. Can I get a rain check on that?”

“Only if you’re buying!” Fleetfoot said with a laugh. “You can take us out when Long Run comes next week.”

“Deal! I’ll see you guys then!” Rainbow said as she took to the air.

* * Ω * *

Rainbow Dash grunted as she closed the front door to Long Run’s house. She had thought that Long’s date with Pinke would be over by now, but his empty abode said otherwise. “He couldn’t still be at Sugarcube Corner, could he?”

Dash took to the air again and shot towards Ponyville. If he was there, then their date had been even more successful than she had thought it would be. The Wonderbolt meeting had gone on for a couple of hours, and Dash had figured Long and Pinkie would be done within half an hour, at best. After all, they were just having cookies together and getting to know each other.

But what if they were getting to know each other a little too well? Dash’s mood soured slightly with the thought. Long Run was a sucker for a mare with curves, after all, and Pinkie’s baking skills meant that she had all of the right curves in all of the right places. One thing might have led to another, and even though it was early in the afternoon, Pinkie did have a private room in the attic of Sugarcube Corner.

Dash put on a little extra speed. While she couldn’t fully believe that Long and Pinkie would hit it off so quickly, the mere possibility that it had worried her for reasons that she couldn’t explain.

A few minutes later, Rainbow Dash skidded to a stop outside the bakery, and a wave of relief washed over her when she glanced through the window of the store. Long and Pinkie were sitting in a back corner, and from the smiles on their faces, the date had been going extremely well. Grateful that her own wild thoughts had been wrong, Dash moved into the shop and towards her friends.

“Ah! Rainbow Dash!” Long cheered, and he motioned to the empty chair at their table. “Come, join us! We were just talking about you.”

“You were?” Rainbow asked with a grin.

“Yeah. We were talking about the Wonderbolts, and how your wingspan is perfect for handling the G forces you endure during your routines. It’s been a fascinating conversation.”

Rainbow’s wings ruffled a bit. “And you’ve been enjoying this, Pinkie? I didn’t know you were that interested in the Wonderbolts. Or flying in general.”

“Normally it’s kinda boring,” Pinkie replied with a shrug. “Especially when Twilight tries to explain how flying works in detail and with flow charts. But Long just has a way of making it interesting, y’know? I’m learning so much, I feel like I could just explode!”

“Please don’t actually do that,” Dash said while leaning away from her. “It took us a whole day to clean up the last time that happened.”

“You really exploded once?” Long asked.

“Yeah, but only a little bit. Twilight has been waaay more explosive than I have. Do you remember that one time, when she spontaneously combusted? She couldn’t figure out how the Pinkie Sense worked, and she finally just snapped! It was hilarious! I never thought she’d believe in it!”

“I wasn’t there for that one, Pinkie,” Rainbow replied. “You and Fluttershy told me about it later. I wish I had been there.”

“Why don’t you tell me about it?” Long pushed the plate of cookies towards Rainbow Dash with a smile. “I don’t think I’ve heard this story before. And what’s the deal with this ‘Pinkie Sense’ you’re talking about?”


“So, you and Pinkie seem to have really hit it off,” Rainbow Dash idly noted with a flick of her tail.

“Yeah, she’s pretty fun,” Long said with a nod. “I can see why you were so surprised that I hadn’t met her. I wouldn’t mind going out with her again, sometime.”

“You wouldn’t?” Rainbow slammed the door to Long’s refrigerator shut and whirled around.

“Why is that so surprising?” Long asked as he looked over his mail for the day. “Were you thinking we’d hate each other for some reason?”

“No, but I didn’t think she was your type.”

“I have a type?” he asked, and Rainbow rolled her eyes.

“All stallions do, even if they deny it. You really didn’t mind all of her—” she stalled for a moment as she struggled for the right word “—Pinkie-ness?”

“Not at all. She’s super sweet, and surprisingly knowledgeable and eager to learn. If that was a date, it was probably the best first date I’ve ever had.”

“That’s a first,” Rainbow muttered. “Usually Pinkie overwhelms a pony with her non-stop energy. I bet she tried to talk your ears off.”

Long shook his head. “Not really. Truth be told, I probably did most of the talking.” He glanced up and retreated slightly when he saw Rainbow’s slack-jawed shock. “What?”

“You outtalked her?! Nopony can outtalk Pinkie Pie! What did you do to her?!”

“I didn’t do anything!” he protested. “We simply had a nice, polite conversation, unlike the one this one is turning into.”

Rainbow Dash began to pace the length of his house. “Something is seriously messed up here. First, I find out you’ve never met her, and now you’re telling me you managed to get a word in edgewise? Pinkie never lets pauses happen! She has this inbred desire to fill every moment with some sort of noise! How did you manage to talk more than her?”

“Well, she’d ask a question, and then I’d answer, and then she’d ask a follow-up question. It’s not that hard to understand. Honestly, I wish the ponies in my flight classes were more like her.”

“So, are you going on another date with her?”

“We agreed to meet up again once my schedule clears up. I haven’t had a vacation in the longest time, so I figured I should take one and just relax for a bit. You and I should go do something, too. We haven’t done anything together for a while.”

This statement brought a halt to Rainbow’s pacing, and she offered a devious smile as her eyes met his. “I thought you were still sore from the last time I smoked you at bowling. I’m all for a rematch. Just give me the time and I’ll be there!”

* * Ω * *