• Published 22nd Aug 2012
  • 3,483 Views, 128 Comments

Element of Loyalty - AirDasher

War is at the border of Equestria, the six elements of harmony will have to answer the call. They are to choose one among them to enter the war, but will that pony be the same when everything is setteled?

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Chapter 4

Rainbow Dash's first impression was excitement when they got the news that only 20 kilometers up the road was a griffin scout base. But right now she was just angry as her current position was bombarded with magical mortars. They were in a valley, the only way in was through a field that led directly to the small village. The griffins had seen them coming and prepared for counter attack. When the first mortar had hit the ground did the ground forced charge the city. BAD move, they had already planted magical mines in the ground. When the first earth pony step on it, he was sent flying in the air, his right back hoof that had stepped on the mine was completely gone, not one bit was left. Sending blood and fear through the ranks in front beside and behind him. All the mortars that rained down on them made it almost impossible to fly. Lightning Twist crawled up beside her “W- fin- oth-r” Rainbow tilted her head as the explosion from the mortars shocked the very core of the pegasus. Lightning Twist came closer “WE NEED TO FIND THE OTHE-” The explosion from that mortar sent a pillar or dirt and rocks up in the air together with the screams that soon followed as one unlucky soul had been hit.

Rainbow Dash nodded “I’ll meet you here in five!” Rainbow started to crawl to her right as Lightning Twist crawled to the left. Rainbow Dash’s gaze fell to the blood on the ground, even to some of the motionless ponies that lied on the ground. They would soon have a break to advance as the griffins needed time to reload their cannon. Rainbow Dash craned her neck to get a look over her shoulder to see if Lightning Twist had more luck than she did. Rainbow noticed Agile and Shooting Springe was beside her, but where was Lighting Charger. Rainbow Dash felt a panic rise inside her chest and move to her hooves. The cyan Pegasus was quick to look around after Lighting Charger. Rainbow’s eyes scanned as fast as they could over the field but mostly found armored ponies either in a bundle, or alone, in the blood soaked ground. Often in the mud as well. But her eyes couldn’t find the one target she was looking for. Rainbow was sent to the ground as a mortar exploded right next to her, Rainbow Dash tried to breath as the mortar had knocked the air out of her longs. Rainbow Dash gasped for air a couple of times before the much needed oxygen finally reached her lungs. Rainbow Dash exhaled a few times “Too close for comfort...” Rainbow Dash rolled over on her belly again, her eyes finally found its’ target. Only 5 feet to her left was a heavy armored pegasi with dark blond mane and tail. Rainbow Dash crawled in his direction, a sudden mortar strike covered her side of the field in dust, Rainbow wasn’t to let this chance slip away. Rainbow went from a lying position to a full out sprint in a blink of an eye. Rainbow saw the dark blond pegasus and threw herself at the ground sliding up next to him.

Lightning Charger looked with bewildered eyes. “What are you do-ng here!?” Rainbow watched behind him as another pillar of dirt and dust flew into the air. “W- need to regroup and get tho- mortars out! Follow me!” Rainbow turned around and started to crawl toward the designated area. The mortar rain stopped, all the ground unit hurried to find a unicorn that would create a shield around them once the “Rain” continued.

Lightning Twist eyed the Rainbow maned pegasus that walked in their direction. Lightning Twists eyes scanned over the armor as a couple of stones had tried penetrate the side of the armor. Rainbow Dash walked up next to Lightning Twist with Lightning Charger right behind her. Lightning Twist looked over the groupe. “We need to mortar silenced, It’s slowing our advance to greatly. We already have some casualties and don’t need more. So let’s head to one mortar each and take out whoever fires it and turn it around on them instead.” Rainbow smiled at the thought of using their own weapon against them. Lightning Twist looked at Rainbow “ I got something in mind for you Rainbow Dash,” Rainbow looked at Lightning Twist a bit confused, “A bit for you thought.” Lightning Twist chuckled lightly. “We need you to be a distraction, to take the fire from the mortars away from our ground units. It means, fly low and try to distract them as best you can.” Dash’s smile faded, “I’ll do it if needed.”

Lightning Twist smiled and placed a hoof on Rainbows right shoulder “Hey, it’s going to be alright. You are the fastest flyer I’ve ever seen. Besides, it’s hard for you to be subtle about your flying with that rainbow streak after you.” Rainbow smiled a bit.

“Yeah, guess you're right, it’s just I promised my friends I would come back safe and sound .” Lightning Twist kept her gaze on the cyan mare.“Then keep that promise, If you’re able to draw all the fire at you and this succeed, I’ll make sure you can visit them for a few days.”

Rainbow’s smiled increased tenfold.

Lightning Twist and her unit had taken cover in the hillside to wait for the mortar rain to start again. A sudden explosion caught everyone off guard; Rainbow Dash readied herself. “Game, ON!” Rainbow’s hind hoof kicked off the ground at a speed and strength few could match, Rainbow Dash propelled herself through the air as she flapped her wings furiously to gain height. Rainbow saw the mortars were placed behind the village. Rainbow flew up in the clouds, scouting for any signs of griffins in the air. None she could see had even noticed her up there.

The rainbow Pegasus came closer and closer until she was about right in front of the village. A sudden gust to her left made her lose her balance as she did a barrel roll to the right to gain it back. The heavy armor made it indeed harder to fly. A sudden screech made her aware that she had been spotted, Rainbow Dash cursed as the golden armor was excessively visible against the blue sky and white clouds. Rainbow watched as the black dots in the town rose into the air before it gained speed toward her. Rainbow Dash cursed her armor yet again as she wouldn't be able to out-fly them, Rainbow was even unsure if she was more agile than them at the moment. Dash dived right down against the incoming griffins, Rainbow trusted that her armor would keep her safe from the incoming attackers. Rainbow Dash dodged the first griffin with ease. Her nose dive seemed efficient at first as most of the griffins dodged her. However, one of the griffins stood her ground. Rainbow didn’t have time to dodge as she crashed head first into the griffin. The time seemed to slow for Rainbow as she heard the sickening crack as the griffins rib cage broke. Rainbow was sent spinning toward the ground together with the griffin. The cyan pony flared out her wings trying to get balance again. The force against her wings sent painful needles through them, Rainbow dash kicked away from the griffin that had stopped her assault and hoped it would be enough to straighten herself again. Rainbow Dash watched in horror as the ground came closer and closer. Rainbow pulled up as best she could, the ground still came closer and all she could do was watch

NO, Rainbow Dash didn’t give up, her strength returned in her wings as she flapped them even harder and started to straighten out her dive. Rainbow Dash’s hind hooves just barely scratched the ground, Rainbow flew at full speed toward the city, only a few inches lower, and she would hit the ground. Dash heard the screech behind her again; Rainbow Dash shot a glance over her shoulder only to find 10 or more griffins fast approaching. They had the advantage of the dive. The cyan Pegasus looked forward just in time to dodge a house and fly into a main street of the village. The griffins behind her weren’t that lucky and flew right into the house. Rainbow kept flying through the narrow streets.

Dash looked over her shoulders only to find half of the griffins gone “HAAA! Guess I am more agile even with a heavy armor!” Rainbow Dash failed to notice the cart up in front of her, just as Rainbow Dash turned her head, did she fly into the cart head first. Rainbow rammed through the cart but lost most of her speed. Rainbow’s helmet was thrown off, the griffins flew right past her as the sudden lack of speed. Rainbow looked in horror as the group in front of her turned; She flapped her wings in the other direction trying to gain speed. Rainbow Dash shot another glance over her shoulder only to sight the biggest griffin she had ever seen. Rainbow watched in horror as his claws were aimed for her back. Just as he flung at her, did she barrel role to the right. Rainbow felt a sharp pain in her left side.

The mare turned around and faced the rest of the griffins. It was easier to dodge them once she saw them coming, but the pain in her side prevented her from turning to much to the left. Rainbow Dash dodged another griffin as she was finally gaining speed again. This was a mad hunt; Rainbow flew past a corner of an average sized looking house and saw a pile of smoke rise. To her left. “The mortars!” Rainbow flew to the left as best she could, it was a large street, but the wall of the building on her right came dangerously close as her hooves made contact. Rainbow did the first thing that came to her mind, run. Rainbow flapped her wings as she ran on the wall. A loud crash behind her indicated that yet another griffin was down. Rainbow Kicked from the wall as best she could and propelled herself in the direction of the mortar making sure she was seen. Rainbow flew between the seven mortar holes that was there and made sure she had their attention.

Rainbow felt she had forgotten something and pulled backwards making a loop. Already as she pulled up and was upside down did her eyes widen as she looked directly into the golden eyes of the griffin from earlier. Rainbow’s gaze was fixed on the large creature, Dash noticed he had a scar over his left eye and his wings were covered in old wounds that had healed over. Rainbow clapped her wings at her side and propelled between his wings before they shot out and flapped once more. The mare could feel her tail make contact with his head as she passed between his large wings. A sudden explosion snapped her out of the shock as a mortar had exploded in a tree she had passed sending the old wood to the ground. Dash knew she had their attention and started to fly towards the Village again where she would have the advantage.
Rainbow whipped between the streets as fast she could, noticing that more and more ponies were in the streets the deeper into the village she flew. A building to her right exploded in front of her sending glass, wood, and stone in the air. Rainbow covered her eyes and flew through it; the griffin at her back was still in pursuit. The cyan pegasus shot a look over her shoulder to see him hanging behind. Dash grinned as she saw for once that she was gaining the upper hoof against him.
Rainbow’s gaze moved forward again and she turned to right at a corner, as it was much easier to maneuver that way. Rainbow finally felt things were going her way. A sudden sharp pain in her left side made her close her eyes in agony. Dash’s wings folded as she pressed both hooves against her left side. She opened her eyes just in time to see a house in front of her.

Rainbow Dash ignored the extreme pain in her left side and turned to the right once again, her hooves made hard contact against the wooden side of the building as she was forced to run again. Rainbow’s joints flared up in pain as the impact of the wooden wall. It was harder than she had hoped for. The mare gritted her teeth, hearing an explosion. Her ears perked up as the sound came from the other side of town. Rainbow looked behind her and noticed that the griffin was gone. Dash could finally slow down. Her breathing was everything else but controlled. She was exhausted from flying around in the city for so long, together with watching her back all the time. Rainbow Dash landed in the town’s square where most of the ponies had gathered up. The rainbow-maned pony saw Lightning Twist, Agile Haste, Shooting Springe, and Lightning Charger in the middle of the crowd. Rainbow landed at the edge of the group, “Rainbow Dash!” She didn’t even have time to land before somepony shouted her name, Rainbow looked up to see Shooting Springe wave her up. Dash forced a smile as she covered her wound with a hoof to walk up. The crowd gasped as she walked past them, the look of pride in Shooting Springe’s face changed as she saw the walking soldier. Rainbow Dash saw all eyes were on her left side. Rainbow looked down where she thought her hoof covered most of the wound, but she was wrong. It only covered a small part of it. Her eyes widened as she for the first time saw the wound herself. It started where her shoulder ended and stopped right in front of her hind hoof muscle. The armor had been penetrated like butter. Rainbow looked up at the unit she belonged to, Lightning Charger and Agile Haste were already beside her to help support the weight. Rainbow moved her wings to their back to allow the two pegasi to sustain her weight. The crowd was cut in half as a path opened at once; Lightning Twist was already on the way to find a medic.

Rainbow Dash let out a groan as they walked through town, “I could’ve sworn it wasn’t that large.” Agile haste made sure she did not touch her left side as she walked. “How could you not notice?! That wound is large!”
Rainbow forced a smile. “I was occupied by getting the attention of the mortars, together with the griffins that followed me.”
Lightning Charger gaze shifted over the scenery. “Looks like most of them crashed into buildings if you ask me...”
Rainbow shot him a cocky smile “They weren’t as agile as me!” Lightning Charger looked down to the mare at his side. “You’re crazy, you know that?” Rainbow smiled back “If I wasn’t, I wouldn’t have taken the job.” Agile and Lightning Charger chuckled.

Lighting Twist landed in front of them. “The medics have set up their base down this street and at a tavern.” Rainbow watched as Lightning Twist folded her wings back to her sides. “Great. Just a short distance to get patched up.” Lightning Twist eyed the sky blue pegasus “Shooting Springe is already at the medic camp waiting for us.” Rainbow folded her wings and set up her speed to a trot, “H-hey! Not so fast, Rainbow Dash!” Rainbow Dash recognized the voice as Agile Haste.
“The faster we get there the faster I can get patched up.” Lightning Twist followed their speed “Not a good idea, Rainbow.” Dash's left hooves collapse and she dropped to the ground “RAINBOW DASH!” yelled Agile and hurried up beside her, Lightning Charger was right behind.

Rainbow lied still on the ground. “If you tell anyone...” Agile and Lightning Charger let out a breath of relief “Rainbow Dash tried to stand up but failed and fell again. “A little help over here?” Lightning Twist walked up beside her and offered a hoof. “We’re a team; we care for each other, when one is pinned to the ground. The other helps. Why won’t you just accept the help that is given?” Rainbow Dash looked away. “I want to prove I can do it on my own..” Lightning Twist looked dumbfound. “Prove you can walk? Rainbow, you just took the fire of seven mortars alone, even faced a two and a half unit alone. Why in Equestria would you want to prove you can walk?” The cyan blue pegasus’s eyes shifted, she met the gaze of Lighting Twist. Rainbow couldn’t really explain it but, she always felt like doing things her way. Dash always felt the need to prove she was strong, but the gaze from Lightning Twist was full of worry and sympathy, something about her gaze told her it was okay.
“You don’t have to prove anything to us.” Rainbow grabbed her hoof, Lightning Twist pulled and the mare rose to her hooves. “I’m sorry; I should thank you for helping me, not push it away once it is offered.” Rainbow looked up and met Agile, Lighting Charger, and Lightning Twist’s gaze. They were all smiling at her; Charger craned his neck to look down the street.“Let’s get you fixed up.”
Rainbow Dash waited for the doctor to finish bandaging her side. They had used over an hour to get the armor off her as the metal had been bent in towards her wound making it extremely painful to remove. Rainbow had also lost a lot of blood, which was the cause of her falling earlier. She watched as the unicorn doctor cleanse her wound with magic before he wrapped her entire midsection with gauze. The unicorn looked up from the wound and at Dash. “You will have to lay still for a while,” the pale, tan pony looked down at her wound again. “I want you to switch gauze every day so we don’t need to be afraid of an infection.” Rainbow nodded to the doctor. “Good, then we are all done here.”

The Pegasus was bound to lie still at least 3 days before she could do anything. She often got visits from her unit or other ponies thank her for what she had done. Rainbow’s eyes moved to the door of the tavern as it opened, revealing a dark blue coat. “Lightning Twist! How’s it going out there?” Lightning Twist chuckled at the optimism of the mare.“I’ve come to keep a promise” Rainbow Dash shot her a glance “So?” Lightning Twist nodded “You’ve been allowed to leave as soon you’re healthy enough.” Rainbow couldn't hold back her stifled laugh. Her laughter was short as her gauze became a crimson red. Lightning Twist looked at the wrap, then to Dash. “You need to lay still Rainbow.” She rolled her eyes. “I’ve heard that a lot.” Lightning Twist walked towards the door, she stopped in the entryway. “Good work, I knew you could do it.” Lightning Twist walked out the door and closed it behind her. Rainbow grabbed a piece of paper and started to write on it. Suddenly the door opened again, Rainbow Dash looked up from the paper to the pony in the door. Lightning Twist, and Lightning Charger had entered. They sat down a chest in front of her bed. “You ruin way to many armors, so we figured you should take the one Princess Celestia got you. It’s much stronger than the regular armor we wear.” The rainbow-maned Pegasus smiled as they both left the room again.

The days went slowly after Rainbow’s departure, Applejack was nowhere to be seen since it was Applebuck season. Rarity was too busy on a big order for a fashion show in Canterlot. Pinkie pie was helping the Cakes on a big delivery that was going to Canterlot, as the fashion show was going to draw a lot of ponies from far and wide. So it was a lot of baking to do. Fluttershy was too preoccupied by helping a sick bunny to do anything else. And Twilight herself was also occupied by her studies to even try and do something social with her friends.

Applejack looked to the blue sky, almost expecting a rainbow to streak across it. She wiped away the sweat on her forehead. Her eyes shifted once again to the tree in front of her. The orange Earth Pony turned and gave a swift kick to the tree, rewarded with enough apples to fill two buckets. “Applejack!” AJ jumped and looked up to the sky to see a grey mare with a blond mane flying towards her. “Howdy Derpy! Ya got some mail for me?”

Ditzy Doo landed right in front of her, and moved a hoof into the saddle bag on her right side. “Yeah, I do, I just need to find it! It know it’s somewhere in here…” Applejack smiled and rolled her eyes “Take yer’ time Derpy.” The mail pony smiled weakly before she pulled out a letter “Ah, here it is!” she handed Applejack the letter. “Thank yeh kindly.” She opened the letter and began to read. Her eyes widened as she handed Ditzy an apple. “It’s on the house!” She yelled over her shoulder before rushing into a gallop towards Ponyville’s Town Square.

Applejack sprinted into town and to the library at full speed. On average, a pony would have been heaving. But all those years of applebucking had made her stronger, and had given her more stamina. The orange mare ran all the way to the library and knocked on the door while trying to catch her breath. The sound of hoof steps from the inside got her attention as the door slowly opened. Twilight smiled as she saw her friend in the door way, “Applejack! Come on in.” Applejack didn’t have time to formalities. “Twilight! Rainbow Dash is comin’ tomorrow!” The purple unicorn almost jumped in her track at the loud outburst of her orange friend. The mare gave a look of distress “We’ll have to tell the others!” Applejack looked over her shoulder and to the busy ponies that wandered the street. “Ah know sugar cube, but couldn’t ya teleport around with yer fancy magic and tell em’ in no time?” by the time Applejack looked back at Twilight, she was already gone to spread the news.

Applejack jumped as Twilight burst out of thin air in front of her. “They are all on their way here.” Applejack looked dumbfound. “Ya’ll need to stop doin’ that…” Twilight looked at her a bit confused “Stop what?” Applejack walked into the library. “ The appearin’ out of nowhere, sugercube.” Twilight looked at her, a bit confused. But instead of thinking more about it, she moved her gaze outside the door to the horizon. She imagined the rainbow pegasus coming in her direction, soaring through the sky. She moved her gaze again to the ground where she saw her friends galloping her way.
“What is all this fuss about, darling? You know I do have a big order right?” Twilight looked at Rarity as she asked in honest concern. “I think you’ll want to hear this.” Applejack walked up beside Twilight “Ya didn’t tell them already, Twi?” Pinkie bounced up and down. “Told us what? She only told us to get her right away! I was all like ‘WHY?’ Then I told the cakes and they were also like ‘WHAT’ then I hurried here and is still all ‘WHY?’” Fluttershy shifted uneasy “Um…can you tell us, Twilight? I’m worried about my bunny...” Twilight was about to start, but was interrupted. “Ah recon gettin’ a letter sayin’ Rainbow is gonna come tomorrow is the ‘why’, Pinkie.” the group looked at her. The silence was broken by Rarity. “Are you serious, dear Applejack?” AJ’s green eyes meet her deep blue. The orange Earth Pony took of her hat and showed them the letter she had received this morning. Applejack couldn’t help but smile as she saw the emotions change on each or her friends faces.

A loud thud and the sound of clattering metal were heard. Soon after, the air filled with stomping hooves and whistling. Twilight perked her ears to a cheer of a crowd. Everypony in the room walked over to the door. The purple unicorn opened the door. Her eyes widened at the sight. The crowd had stopped cheering. In front stood a pony; her body covered in a black armor. The patterns that indicated where the shoulders was, were nothing more than lightning bolt patterns that went over them and down to the hooves. In the colors of the rainbow. Those patterns were also stretching from the shoulders and up to the neck. In the middle of the chest plate was a red bolt. The pony also had a full helmet, making it impossible to recognize by it’s face. There was however a hole in the neck of the armor for the mane. It was the six colors of the rainbow, matching the tail. The armor covered every body part fully except the wings.

Applejack and Pinkie Pie were the first of them to run over to her. The rest of the group ran right after. Rainbow had just enough time to remove her helmet and yelp before her friends tackled her down to the ground. Her helmet landing with a clank of metal, not too far from the group as everyone was laughing. Dash groaned at the sudden impact that sent a flare through her left side. She was bombarded with questions like “How are you!?” “Long time no see, Rainbow!” “How’s the army life?” Also, “Where did you get that cool armor!” And lastly, “Welcome back!” The six slowly moved away from her, Applejack offered her a hoof to help her up. Of which Rainbow gladly accepted. Pinkie already held her helmet studying it. “Hi girls.” Rainbow smiled to her friends. “Looks like I just got 20% cooler!” AJ laughed before bumping the side of the cyan solider. Earning another groan from Rainbow Dash. “Looks like an upgrade to me, Did ya just groan?” Applejack stared at Rainbow Dash “Please don’t touch my left side...” The farm pony went in for a closer inspection. “Doesn't look broken teh me.” Rarity walked around her studying the armor piece by piece “This looks marvelous! How in Equestria did you get this armor, darling?” Rainbow stifled a laughed “ Princess Celestia arranged it.” Pinkie pie bounced over to her hugging her tight. “I’VE MISSED YOU, DASHIE!” She screamed as she threw her front hooves around her. Rainbow winced in pain making Pinkie Pie let go at once “I’ve missed you too.” Fluttershy, which had been a little outside the group, finally joined in “It’s wonderful to see you!” The rainbow-maned Pegasus looked over at her friend smiling. “I’ve missed you too Fluttershy. I’ve missed you all.”

The six mares had moved into the library. After some fighting through the crowd, they finally managed to get inside the library. Twilight couldn’t help but ask. “Rainbow, in your letter you said you would be coming tomorrow...how come you're here one day earlier?” Dash looked at Twilight. “I sent it two days ago… They told me the mail was slow but I didn’t think It was that slow...” Twilight smiled and hugged her gently. “I’m glad you’re back anyway!”

Applejack sat down on a pillow in the middle of the library, the others grabbed one for themselves and sat down in a circle, waiting for Rainbow and Twilight to settle down. Rainbow looked at her friends and smiled .“Applejack?” The orange earth-pony looked at her friend with a puzzled look. “Ya, sugarcube?”

“Could you help me get this armor off?” Applejack’s eyes widened a little. “The fastest flyer in Equestria is askin’ fer mah help, even before tryin?” Dash let out a nervous laugh “It’s not that I can’t do it myself, it’s just easier WITH some help.” AJ rose to her hooves however, walked over to her friend, and started to remove the metal armor. As the mare removed Dash’s left cage plate, her eyes widen as she saw the gauze. “Sugarcube, ah don’t mean’ to put mah snout in yer business, but how did ya get this here large wound of yer’s?” Rainbow looked over her shoulder at her worried friends

Twilight, Rarity, Pinkie Pie, and Fluttershy sent each other worried looks. “Take it easy. It will disappear in no time!” Said the Sky blue Pegasus with a smile, as she noticed how they looked to each other. But it was a reminder to her friends that her life actually stood on the line. After a few moments, the armor was placed on a table. She sat down with her five friends. Twilight broke the silence by firing a question. “What happened?” Rainbow seemed a little distanced for a moment before she spoke up. “We were going to capture a small village and a scout base. We walked right into their trap as it was in a valley; they had placed magical mines in the field, and placed mortars on the other side of town. We were like running ducks. So Lightning Twist, the leader of our unit, had the idea of taking them out. Therefore, my squad and I did as we had planned. I played as bait to draw the fire from the mortars. When I was over halfway there, did a guest send me off balance. I lost a couple of feet. The stationed....bandits there noticed me and all hell broke loose, I think around ten or so followed me, but I flew through the streets and lost most of them. So I shoot a glance backward and suddenly a cart was in front of me. I rammed right into it, I lost almost all speed, and the griffins were able to get a hit. Besides, it isn’t a war, it’s a power sick griffin named Red Eagle that is trying to get all of Equestria under one banner. He is outnumbered and on the edge of losing. Hay, even his “soldiers” are just bandits, thieves, criminals, and mercenaries. But he still doesn’t stand down and accept defeat” The group of mares looked at her in silence. Fluttershy spoke up. “I hope you come home soon, Heartwarming Eve is in two weeks.” Rainbow smiled. “The way it is looking now, I’ll probably be home in one week!” It was just as if a dark cloud had been moved away from the room as each of them smiled.

Author's Note:

A big thanks to Chewyrainbow for editing this chapter! Hope you all enjoyed the chapter and are tuned for the next one^^ If you don't know chewy i recommend sending her a message xD she's awsome!