• Published 1st Jan 2012
  • 1,805 Views, 38 Comments

Strategies of War - TheSharp0ne



Equestria is pulled into a war it never saw coming, and Twilight Sparkle is right in the midst of it

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Chapter 2

Chapter 2

|Normal| |Adventure| |War|


“Can you help us? Can you HELP US?!” Rainbow Dash was furious. She ran up to him and put her muzzle to his. The suddenness of this caused Blitz to back up, but Rainbow Dash kept moving forward, causing both of them to head towards the back of Blitz’s house, muzzle to muzzle.

“WE’RE not the ones you should be HELPING!” Rainbow continued, voice level continuing to rise. Twilight glanced back at the end of Blitz’s living room and noticed his map of Equestria. She noticed there was writing on it, but was unable to read it before the pair of pegasi crashed into the wall, the force of it shaking the structure and causing the map to fall behind Blitz’s couch.

“Do you KNOW what you’ve DONE?!” Rainbow said, glaring down at Blitz, who had fallen to the ground from the impact.

“Not in the slightest.” Blitz growled, as he rose to his hooves and glared back at the mare. They were muzzle-to-muzzle again, both of whom had their wings flared aggressively. Blitz’s face was hard and impassive, but his deep blue eyes told a much different story. Twilight knew Rainbow Dash could hold her own in a fight, but something told Twilight she wouldn’t overcome the stallion if it came to that.

“Stop it! Both of you!” Twilight shouted, running up and separating the two. Rainbow Dash immediately tried to rush Blitz again, so Twilight had to hold her in place with magic. Blitz just stood firmly in place, a fire in his eyes.

“Yes, it would do well for you to calm yourself while inside my residence, Rainbow Dash, before somebody gets hurt.” Blitz said, voice stern and commanding.

“Is that a threat? Do you know who I am?” Rainbow Dash said, struggling with the invisible bonds of Twilight’s spell.

“I know perfectly well who you are: Rainbow Dash, from Cloudsdale. Completed Flight School at the top of her class. Aspiring Wonderbolt. Second pegasus ever to pull off a Sonic Rainboom. You’re also the Sixth ponysonification of the Element of Loyalty. And you have a very uncontrollable temper.”

There it was again. Sixth ponysonification of the Element of Loyalty? What was that supposed to mean? Twilight shook her head; she had more important things to focus on right now.

“Look, Rainbow Dash is sorry for barging into your home,” Twilight paused to glare daggers at the mare in question. “but you’ve upset one of our friends. And you need to apologize.” Twilight had turned her dagger-glare towards Blitz now, and was speaking with as sternly as she could.

“Upset one of your friends? But I haven’t done anything, I’ve been reading all day.” Blitz countered, nodding his head towards a few boxes of open books.

“Exactly,” Twilight said, “you were supposed to go to Pinkie Pie’s party a few hours ago, and you didn’t show up. Now she’s upset, and since you caused it, you need to fix it.”

For the second time since she met him, Blitz’s normally impassive expression faltered. It turned to that of both guilt and surprise. He sighed, and began heading towards the door. “Well then, I suppose I should do damage control.”


-------------------


Blitz was visibly taken aback when they reached Sugar Cube Corner. Pinkie Pie was the exact opposite of how she was earlier this morning. When he first met the mare, she was lively, energetic, her mane was poofy, and she never stopped smiling. Now, she just sat on her haunches, frowning. Her mane and tail were completely straight, and her colors were visibly faded.

Blitz began walking circles around Pinkie Pie, studying her intensely. The pink mare’s gaze never moved from the floor. After several seconds of studying her, Blitz called Twilight over.

“Hm, this is a peculiar case indeed. One of extreme sadness. I wouldn’t say depression, as it doesn’t come so suddenly. But I do have one theory,” Blitz said. Twilight just nodded at him; she had seen Pinkie like this before, but was curious as to what his theory was.

“Pinkie Pie is the Eighth Element of Laughter. So naturally, the one attribute she’d be brimming with would be happiness and joy. And when it comes to the Elements, that attribute, and its polar opposite, come in the most extreme. So Pinkie is literally the saddest pony in Equestria right now. But, depending on the cause, can be easily reversed.” Blitz finished explaining, and Twilight just stared at him. She didn’t expect his theory to actually seem, well, correct. She figured Pinkie was always just being Pinkie, and this was just like her Pinkie Sense: just there, and with no explanation. Just strange.

“Wait,” Twilight said, realizing something for about the millionth time today. It seemed Blitz had that sort of effect on her. “What are you talking about, ‘Eighth Element of Laughter?’ You’ve said something like that twice now. What do you mean?” Twilight asked Blitz, as he was walking towards the pink pony.

Blitz froze in his tracks as the mare spoke. He really was treading on tricky ground here. “That’s not the most important thing right now,” he responded sternly, figuring now wasn’t the best time to address that subject. “Right now, I need to cheer up your friend.”

The rest of the group of friends fell silent as Blitz approached, having been explaining to Fluttershy what happened at Blitz’s house. Rainbow Dash, Applejack, and Rarity all gave him angry looks, obviously expecting him to help their friend. Blitz ignored them; he walked up to Pinkie Pie and laid down on his underside in front of her. He spent several seconds staring at her with narrowed eyes. Finally, he took his hoof and placed it under Pinkie Pie’s chin, lifting her head so her gaze met his.

“Hello, Pinkie. My name is Blitz,” he began, but Pinkie was just staring at him with a sad look on her face. “I’m sorry I did not show up for your party earlier. I did not quite feel comfortable with the entire town there, and because I moved here last night, I’ve been rather busy. How about in a few days, once I am settled in, you can hold another party and I can be introduced to everyone. What do you say?” Blitz finished, extending his hoof to the mare with the offer.

Pinkie Pie just stared at him for several seconds. Blitz saw no visible effort by Pinkie to consider his offer, and he was about to attempt another tactic when suddenly the pink pony that was in front of him disappeared.

“OKAY!” Pinkie Pie shouted, suddenly appearing next to Blitz. He jumped to his hooves, startled by the sudden outburst. Pinkie Pie had already begun bouncing in circles around him though, her mane and tail once again poofy and her coat back to it’s vivid pink.

Blitz grinned, obviously proud that his idea worked. He turned around and headed towards the door, leaving Pinkie Pie to bounce in circles spouting random party ideas and saying how it was going to be the most super-duper-awesomest-spectacular party ever.

Blitz smirked at Rainbow Dash, who’s mouth was slightly agape at the scene that just played out before her eyes. Blitz looked at the other three ponies near the door, two of which were regarding him carefully.

“Once again, I am sorry I caused her former condition,” he said, slightly elaborating on the <i>former</i> part, “but it was easily fixable.” Blitz continued, face and tone once more impassive.

“My work here is done.” he stated, pushing past Rarity and Applejack, ready to head home and sleep.


-------------------


Blitz was up at exactly four A.M. He got up from his bed and fixed himself some cereal and coffee for breakfast. He ate in silence, thinking over the events of last night. He really was not getting off on the right hoof with the majority of the Elements. Especially Rainbow Dash. Blitz smiled as he remembered his confrontation with her less than eight hours ago. He admired her sense of protection towards her friends.

Wait. Friends. That’s what he needed to do. Make friends with the Elements. Well, not exactly become their friend, but he definitely needed to make amends if he was going to be staying here for a while. Being on the Elements of Harmony’s bad side would not be good. Besides, some of their talents could prove useful in the coming months. And he wouldn’t exactly be able to evaluate Twilight Sparkle if he was on ill ground with her friends.

Blitz finished the remainder of his breakfast and looked outside; the sun was only just rising, and he thought of who else might be awake. Applejack, he thought. She’s a farm pony, of course she’d be awake at the crack of dawn.

Knowing his destination, he headed out the door and inhaled deeply. He loved the air here. Rural towns always did have the cleanest air. Blitz stretched out his wings, and took flight down the road in the direction of Sweet Apple Acres.


-------------------


Blitz’s nose was assaulted with the sweet smell of apples as he approached Sweet Apple Acres. Blitz knew the orchard was large, but he really didn’t expect it to expand for as far as he could see. The orchard really was vast; every single tree for as far as his vision reached had dozens of red apples on them.

He noticed there were already farmhoofs that were busy at work bucking apples off of every tree, each one striking the trees with precision. Blitz saw Applejack come out of the newly constructed barn and he flew down to meet her.

“Hello, Applejack.” Blitz greeted as he landed in front of the mare.

“Howdy Blitz.” Applejack said, stopping where she was. “Yer up mighty early.” she remarked, obviously surprised someone other than a farmpony wasn’t still asleep.

Blitz shrugged, “I’m not much one for sleeping in,” he said, “I much prefer to wake up early and get a head start on the day.” he explained, Applejack nodding in agreement.

“What brings ya’ by?” she asked. Blitz could tell she was regarding him with slight suspicion.

“I’m here to say sorry,” he sighed, a slightly awkwardness in his voice from not being one to apologize. “We got off on the wrong hoof with the party last night, and the whole thing with Pinkie.”

To someone with a trained eye, Blitz would have seemed to have an ever so slight expression of regret on his face. Applejack waved a hoof dismissively. “Ain’t me ya’ should be sayin’ sorry to. But ya’ already said sorry to Pinkie Pie, and as far as Ah could tell, ya’ meant it.”

Blitz was visibly surprised at this. “You aren’t mad at me?” he asked. He was the suspicious one, now.

“Naw, ain’t no big deal, s’long as ya’ learned yer lesson.” Applejack responded, a smile on her face at seeing Blitz’s reaction. “Though Ah s’pose if’n ya’ really wanted to start back on the right hoof, ya’ could start by tellin’ me a bit ‘bout yerself.”

Blitz thought for a moment before he spoke. “Isn’t that what the party Pinkie is holding in a few days for?” he countered. The expression Applejack wore told him she wasn’t going to accept his excuse.

“Fine,” he huffed. “First of all, I grew up in the southern regions of Equestria.” Blitz continued. Applejack’s expression now told Blitz she didn’t quite believe him.

“Ya’ ain’t got yerself no accent though.” she said. “Ya’ sound more like one of them ponies from up North.”

“Well, Ah did spend a lotta time up North after Ah moved outta my parent’s house. So it ain’t no s’prise Ah sorta adopted their type’a talk.” Now it was Blitz’s turn to smile; Applejack’s face had disbelief plastered all over it. Granted, Blitz’s southern dialect wasn’t as heavy as Applejack’s, and it still had a bit of northern twang mixed in with the southern, but it was definitely present.

“Wha- what in tarnation...” by now Blitz had burst into a fit of laughter, Applejack’s inability to process his sudden change in tone being quite amusing for the stallion.

“Ah admit, is’sa... Bit weird talkin’ like Ah normally did when Ah was a colt, so used ta’ proper pronunciation an’ all that.” Blitz chuckled.

Applejack was just beginning to regain her composure; she shook her head and glanced over towards the orchard. “Hehe, Ah’d love t’stay an’ chat, Blitz, but we’re in th’ middle of Applebuck Season an’ well, Ah got mahself a job to do.”

Blitz nodded in understanding. With the size of the orchard, the dozen or so farmhoofs he saw would need as much help as they could get if they were gonna get all of the apples harvested before winter.

“Well, ya’ wouldn’t happen ta’ know any o’ th’ others that might be awake ‘round this time, eh?” Blitz asked, a little disappointed Applejack had to go. He liked Applejack; she was a very down-to-earth pony, and they had a bit in common.

Applejack thought for a moment before she spoke again. “Ah think Fluttershy might be awake. She has t’ get up an’ feed them animals of hers.” Blitz figured that made sense, but he had no idea where Fluttershy lived.

“She lives about over there.” Applejack said when Blitz asked. Her hoof was pointed off towards the edge of the Everfree Forest.

“Thankya’ kindly, Applejack.” Blitz said, nodding his head slightly to the mare. He took note of the subconscious movement, deciding he took up his old manners when he began speaking in his old dialect. He took flight in the direction Applejack pointed in as she waved her hoof goodbye. “Y’all come back anytime ya’ want, sugarcube!”


-------------------


Blitz heard a high pitched “Eep!” as he knocked on the front door to Fluttershy’s cottage. He waited a few more seconds before knocking again. A second “Eep!” was heard.

“Fluttershy, would you answer the door please?” Blitz called through the door to the yellow mare.

“No!” came her reply. Blitz sighed and tried the door knob. It was unlocked, so he opened the door and walked in.

“Fluttershy?” Blitz asked as he walked in. He looked around for a moment, confused. He saw dozens of birdhouses, some mouse holes, and many other areas for animals, but no Fluttershy. He was about to head upstairs to look for her, before he noticed a pink tail sticking out from behind the couch. He walked around the other side and looked down at Fluttershy, who was curled up and hiding behind her pink mane.

Blitz thought for a moment, then laid down in front of her with his legs folded underneath himself. Fluttershy stuck her head out of her mane for a brief second, before ducking back behind it with a muffled “Eep!”

Blitz looked at Fluttershy for a moment before he spoke. “I heard you were a very shy and skittish pony, but I didn’t quite expect you to be this skittish.” One of Fluttershy’s eyes was visible now, and she regarded him with extreme caution.

“And you don’t really know me at all.,” he continued, “I’m basically a complete stranger to you. That’s probably why you’re so wary around me. You don’t like meeting new ponies.” Blitz said with a calm voice. Blitz frowned, realizing something. “And the fact I just waltzed into your home without permission probably doesn’t reflect well on me.” he said, still staring at the yellow mare in front of him.

“N-no... Not really...” Fluttershy agreed quietly. She had peeked the rest of her head out from behind her mane and stood up slowly.

“Well, I do apologize for that,” Blitz said, standing up to meet Fluttershy. “though the reason I came over was to apologize for last night.” he continued, as he walked around to the other side of the couch. “You tend to animals, yes?” Blitz asked, recalling the information he read on her.

“Oh, um, yes, I do. I was about to, um, fix myself some breakfast, but I don’t need to if you wanted me to do something.” Fluttershy said. Blitz was surprised she was willing to skip a meal to offer to help someone.

“Oh, go ahead and fix yourself some breakfast.” Blitz said, not wanting to cause Fluttershy to not eat.

“Well I can fix you something. That is, if you want anything...” Blitz waved a hoof dismissively at the offer.

“No thank you. I already ate breakfast.” he replied.

Fluttershy headed for her kitchen, but stopped and turned around at the door. “Um... I can fix you some tea, if you want.” she offered, not wanting to leave her guest without anything. Blitz considered it for a moment, then accepted the offer. He didn’t like tea, but he wasn’t going to turn down the offer of a cup of it for fear of seeming like an ungrateful guest.

Blitz sat on Fluttershy’s couch while he waited for her to finish making her breakfast and the tea. He heard various sounds of pots and pans clanking around as Fluttershy started cooking her food. From the sound of it, she was cooking some type of steamed vegetables.

Several minutes later, Blitz heard the whistle of a tea pot and after a short delay, Fluttershy appeared in the doorway. “The, um, tea is ready.” she mumbled, stepping aside some so as to let Blitz through. He smiled as he stood up, and walked to the doorway, letting the mare go first.

The kitchen was rather simple. Like many homes, it also doubled at the dining room, with the table set off at another end of the room. There was a simple pantry, a stove, fridge, and all the other common cooking devices lining a wall of the kitchen. Fluttershy had already put her breakfast, which consisted of two eggs, some hay, and an apple, on one end of the dining table. Blitz took a seat at the other end of the round table as Fluttershy finished putting some ingredients in the tea.

“Thank you, Fluttershy.” Blitz said as the pegasus in question handed him a cup of tea before getting some herself. “Now, I do know you still know almost nothing about me, and having me in your home probably isn’t the ideal thing for you,” Blitz said, “but that’s why I’m here; to become friends. Plus, I understand that you don’t like crowds, so doing this at Pinkie Pie’s party probably would not be the best time to- WOO!” Blitz cried after taking a sip of his tea, almost dropping the cup of tea from his mouth after taking a drink.

Fluttershy slightly recoiled at the sudden outburst, but recovered quickly and zoomed next to Blitz. “Oh, are you alright? Is the tea too hot? Oh, did I make it too strong?” Fluttershy asked, worry in her voice.

“Oh, oh no no no, it’s just that, wow! That was delicious, the flavors... That’s just, wow! Fluttershy, where’d you learn to make tea like this?” Blitz choked out, eyes still wide from the barrage of flavor that assaulted his tongue.

Fluttershy hid behind her mane slightly, not being very good at taking compliments. “Oh, um, I get some, um, herbs from the Everfree Forest sometimes...” Fluttershy’s voice had shrunk back to a mere whisper again, but Blitz was listening intently. He quickly downed the rest of his tea and stood up.

“The Everfree Forest?” Blitz said questioningly, look out a nearby window to the all-natural forest. “Do you mind if we take a trip there to find these herbs?”


-------------------


It didn’t really take much convincing to get Fluttershy to take Blitz to where she gathered most of her herbs. Though they were more on the edge of the Everfree, not exactly in the forest like Fluttershy originally stated. And when he asked for her to take him here, he completely forgot she needed to feed her animals, so the next hour was spent helping to gather up all of the different critters that roamed her land and feeding them. The trouble though was getting some of them to actually eat.

Blitz tried his best to ignore when Fluttershy had to use The Stare, but he couldn’t. It scared the hay out of him. And not much can do that.

“So how far away is this area?” Blitz asked, not really seeing much but trees at the moment. They weren’t very far into the Everfree, only a few dozen paces. He could still see the green grass of a nearby field off to his right.

“Oh, it’s not that far. It’s just over there.” Fluttershy said as she pointed her hoof off to the left slightly. At first Blitz couldn’t see anything but trees, but after walking a few more paces a small clearing came into view with dozens of different types of herbs and plants.Most of the plants were some sort of shade of green, but there were a few that were yellow, and some that were even red and orange.

“Well, I’m suddenly wishing that I had brought my saddlebags...” Blitz said rather quietly. Fluttershy was about to speak, but a rainbow blur shot overhead, rustling the leaves of the trees and causing birds to take flight from their nests.

“Oh, Rainbow must be more careful how low she flies, she’s upsetting the birds.” Fluttershy scolded lightly in her usual quiet tone. Blitz took note of the direction Rainbow Dash had flown in before speaking to Fluttershy.

“Well, I thank you for showing me this place, Fluttershy,” he said as he began to hover off the ground. “but I must leave for now. Are you going to be alright getting back to your cottage?” Blitz asked. It was a stupid question, but he didn’t want her to feel as if he was abandoning her out here despite her being so kind. Fluttershy nodded, and Blitz rose a little higher.

“Well then, I thank you for your time, and it was nice helping you feed your animals.” Blitz called down, as he flew off in the direction the rainbow-maned pegasus went moments ago.


-------------------


Blitz flew steadily in the direction Rainbow Dash went. He could already see her; she hadn’t flown that far away, and was obviously practicing tricks over a clearing. Not wanting to be spotted by the pegasus immediately, he flew under the tree line, before touching ground and walking to the edge of the clearing.

Blitz observed the mare carefully, watching her as she flew about. She seemed to be doing some sort of high-speed routine, always performing the same set of tricks three or four times before taking a short break. He knew she was a skilled flier, but even he knew it was dangerous to attempt high speed aerial maneuvers with no clouds below you. Though the recklessness of Rainbow Dash was not the issue Blitz saw.

Blitz remained at the tree line for several more minutes, continuing to watch Rainbow Dash perform her constant cycle of tricks. Eventually he concluded he had seen enough, and walked out a dozen or so paces into the clearing. He stared up at the blue pegasus as she continued to do her series of spins, loops, and weaving in an out of invisible objects.

Rainbow Dash was in the middle of a barrel roll when she stopped in the middle of the descent, having noticed Blitz in the clearing. “What are YOU doing here?” Rainbow said, jabbing a hoof at the forest green pegasus in front of her. “Are you SPYING on me? Huh?!” Rainbow Dash said in an accusing tone.

Blitz raised an eyebrow at this statement questioningly. This mare sure is an odd one, he thought. “No, I saw you fly over the forest and followed you over here. I noticed you were practicing flying and I watched you-”

“AHA! So you WERE spying on me!” Rainbow Dash interrupted. She had now crossed her hooves over her chest, head held high in apparent victory.

Blitz’s face remained blank and unchanging. “I repeat myself, I was not spying on you. I simply came here to apologize about last night. Though, after watching your little flying routine, I should probably give you some tips.”

“Tips? Ha! I’m the best flier in Equestria! I’m the one that should be giving you tips!” Rainbow Dash gloated, whilst, quite literally, flying circles around the pegasus stallion. “Heh, you think you’re such a hot shot at flying, why don’t you race me?” she challenged, voice full of arrogance

Blitz sighed and looked up to the mare, who had resigned herself to hovering above Blitz once again. “Look, Rainbow Dash, I don’t want to race, I just wanted to-”

“What’re you, chicken?” Rainbow Dash said mockingly. “C’mon, I’ll go easy on you!” She called down to Blitz.

“If it’s a race you want,” Blitz said, a sly grin forming on his face. “a race it shall be. But since you’re the challenger, I get to decide the location and stipulations.” He knew just how he could use her arrogance against her. He knew that she would never decline due to his rules. She had convinced herself a long time ago she could win at any race.

“Alright, lets hear it then!” Rainbow Dash exclaimed, finally landing on the ground in front of Blitz. “I’ll be flying circles around you the whole time!” Rainbow Dash said, flaring her wings.

Blitz’s sly smile grew as he heard this. Rainbow Dash wasn’t stupid, he knew, but he guessed she could be an utter foal at times. “Alright then. It’ll be an endurance race. Around Ponyville. Two hundred laps.”

Rainbow Dash’s ears drooped slightly as she heard the number of laps proposed by Blitz. “Two hundred? That’s a lot, don’tcha think?” she said, folding her wings up against her side.

“I was under the impression I got to choose the stipulations, no? And I’m being fair. They in no way hinder your ability to perform at your best.” Blitz managed to retain his emotionless expression, in an attempt to psyche out his opponent.

Rainbow Dash’s down-cast eyes shifted from left to right slightly, before she looked up and flared her wings out once again. “Heh, alright! Lets do it! two hundred laps ‘round Ponyville! I’ll be finished before you can say haystacks!” Rainbow Dash exclaimed, attempting to convey a sense of confidence through her voice.


-------------------


The sky was clear over their heads. The radiant sun was just past its peak, but still beating down on them with intensity. Blitz didn’t know how she did it, but Pinkie Pie managed to set up a starting line on two small clouds about fourty paces off the ground. The strange thing about it was that the checkered banner was attached to two metal poles, which should not have been able to stand on the clouds.

Blitz had originally suggested Twilight be the one to keep track of their laps. He believed she’d be the most unbiased towards Blitz out of the rest of her friends, but Rainbow Dash had insisted Pinkie Pie be the one to keep track.

Blitz was a little hesitant to agree, given his incident with the mare, but eventually did after Rainbow Dash presented a reasonable argument. Blitz didn’t quite remember the specifics, but it ran somewhere along the line of how energetic she was and something to do with announcing.

Blitz flew up to the starting line and looked out over Ponyville. It wasn’t that large of a town, but Blitz still knew it would take a considerable amount of time to complete two hundred laps. Though, if his plan went accordingly, he’d never have to finish.

Before Blitz was able to run through his plan once more, however, Rainbow Dash landed sharply on the starting line. The force of her landing caused small pieces of cloud to break off from the main body and dissipate. She stuck her hoof out and pointed in front of them, slightly to their left.

“You see those? Those mark the path. Go inside the little area they make and you get disqualified for cheating.” Blitz followed her hoof as she spoke, which was panning around Ponyville to point at the objects she was speaking of.

They were small pillars of cloud, about twice the height of Blitz and about as wide as he was long. Blitz turned his head and looked at Rainbow Dash with a questioning look. “When did you manage to set those up? I’ve been with you almost all this time.” he asked, trying to think of when Rainbow Dash could have set up the pillars.

“Me? Oh, I didn’t put ‘em up. Pinkie did.” Rainbow Dash said, pointing off to the right, where Pinkie was perched in a nearby tree. When Pinkie noticed she was being acknowledged, she smiled widely and began waving a hoof rapidly.

Blitz stared intently at the pink earth pony. Then he shifted his gaze to the cloud pillars. Then back to the earth pony. Then back to the cloud pillars. Earth pony. Cloud. He shook his head in an attempt to get the thoughts out of his mind. “She is an... interesting one,” he mumbled, after regaining his composure.

“Nah, she’s just Pinkie,” Rainbow Dash said flatly, as if she’d had to say that plenty of times. Rainbow Dash walked up to the starting line, then turned her attention back to Blitz. “Well? Are you just gonna stand there or are we gonna race?”

Blitz crouched down and flared his wings out as Rainbow Dash signaled to Pinkie Pie to begin the race.

“ON YOUR CUTIE MARK! Hehe, see what I did there?” Pinkie began giddily, shouting through a mega phone she procured. Rainbow Dash yelled at her to stop messing around, and Pinkie continued.

“GET SET!” Blitz braced the muscles in his wings, feeling the soft breeze flow around them.

“GOOOO!!!”

As soon as they began, Blitz was about eighty percent sure he had already won. Rainbow Dash rocketed out of the starting line, the sudden displacement of air causing Blitz’s mane to get blown in all sorts of different directions. As he flew, he watched Rainbow Dash speed around and around, nothing but a blue blur with a small rainbow wake flowing behind her.

Blitz had to admire her speed. By the time he had completed his first lap, Rainbow Dash was already on her fifth. He suddenly realized why she had Pinkie Pie keep count; with her going as fast as she was, it would be very difficult for a normal pony to keep count. Though an energetic Pinkie Pie? That was probably a piece of cupcake to her.

Pegasi could move about very swiftly. With a good beat of their wings, a Pegasus pony could cover the same distance an Earth pony or Unicorn would cover in ten steps. So a race around Ponyville was about the same as if an Earth pony raced a track in school.

To an untrained, or rather, unobservant eye, Rainbow Dash was going just as fast as she was previously. But Blitz could already see she was losing pace and slowing down. While he was on his eleventh lap, Rainbow Dash was on her forty fifth. She should have been on her fifty first lap by now. But Blitz had no problem keeping pace. For the past ten laps he’d clocked in at forty three wing beats on all of them.

It was somewhere around lap eighty for Rainbow Dash that there was a visible decline in her speed. She was only completing about three laps for every one that Blitz did. When she passed him, Blitz could hear her breathing was getting quite heavy. He, on the other hand, was still breathing just as fine as he was at the start of the race.

It was somewhere around lap one hundred and twenty for Rainbow Dash, and eighty five for Blitz, that the residence of Ponyville began to gather near the finish line. Blitz didn’t really want to embarrass her in front of her neighbors, but he understood why they started gathering. You see two ponies flying a make-shift track built around town dozens of times, you’d start to get curious. He shrugged off his concern for Rainbow Dash’s pride and kept on flying.

Blitz wasn’t gonna lie. After going a hundred and thirty laps, his wings hurt. Heck, his entire back hurt. But if his muscles hurt, that meant Rainbow Dash’s must be screaming. What was she on now? He figured it was somewhere around one fifty.

He didn’t think she’d last much longer, since she had slowed down considerably. They were going about the same speed now, though Blitz was sure he was a few wing strokes ahead of her pace.

Blitz was rounding the last bend before the finish line, when he saw Rainbow Dash, who was just ahead of him, collapse on the cloud platform that made up the finish line. There were a few overly dramatic gasps from the small crowd that had amassed below Pinkie’s tree. Blitz flew over to the finish line and stopped next to Rainbow Dash, who was lying on the cloud, breathing very heavily.

“Ah, get up.” Blitz said as he maneuvered his head under her midsection in order to lift her up onto her hooves. Once he had accomplished that, he had to steady her with his wing so she wouldn’t collapse again. “Just breathe, it’ll be alright. Deep breaths, keep your head up high.” Blitz ordered.

He took a deep breath or two himself; flying over hundred laps was not easy, no matter how physically fit one was. But he did his best not to show just how tired he actually was. When he was confident Rainbow Dash wouldn’t collapse again, he withdrew his wing and folded it against his side once more.

“Water.” Rainbow Dash croaked, fur and mane matted together from sweat. Blitz acknowledged her request, and had a nearby pegasus stallion go get some. A minute or so later he returned with a full bucket, which Rainbow Dash gulped down quickly.

“Woah, not so much at one time. You’ll send yourself into shock. We don’t want you throwing up all over the place,” Blitz said, moving the bucket away from her. Though it was rather pointless, for when Blitz looked into the bucket, nothing but droplets were left at the bottom. He sighed, and had another one be brought over.

“How- how many... laps did I... do?” Rainbow Dash heaved, the question directed towards Pinkie Pie.

“One hundred and seventy three!” Pinkie Pie shouted back via her megaphone. The ponies under her perch winced in pain as Pinkie’s loud megaphone-enhanced voice reached their ears.

“And how many... did you do?” Rainbow Dash asked Blitz. She was still huffing, but she managed to speak a bit easier this time.

“One hundred and sixty nine, before I stopped to help you,” Blitz said flatly. “Though, that doesn’t really matter. What matters, is the lesson behind the race.”

“What...? You mean... the whole... was just to... teach me a lesson?” Rainbow Dash huffed in between breaths. A mixture of annoyance, confusion, and exhaustion was plastered across her face.

“Yes. You see, when I was watching you training, I noticed you were just practicing the same few tricks over and over.” When Blitz saw that Rainbow Dash didn’t understand, he continued further. “You want to be a Wonderbolt, correct?” he asked, leaning a little closer to the mare. She nodded, and he drew his head back as he continued.

“Tell me, generally how long is a single Wonderbolts performance?” he asked the exhausted pegasus in front him.

Rainbow Dash had to take a few moments to gather her thoughts through her exhaustion before answering. “About... ten minutes... maybe more.”

“Yes, about ten to twenty minutes for a single performance. And when you’re practicing your routine, how long is it? About a minute or so? Maybe less?” he paused briefly to let Rainbow Dash think on it some.

“You see, you’re practicing as an aspiring Wonderbolt, when you should be practicing as if you were already one. If you do manage to get into the Wonderbolts, you’ll have been so used to practicing your short one minute routine you’ll use for an audition, that you won’t have the necessary endurance or focus for the long performances the Wonderbolts do.”

“You’re training yourself to win the first few skirmishes, when you should be training yourself to win the battle itself. Do you see, now, what I am saying?” he asked Rainbow Dash. He had stepped rather close to the mare now, in an attempt to emphasis his point.

“Yeah... I see what you’re sayin’” Rainbow Dash said. She had managed to steady her breathing some by now, and wasn’t feeling quite as exhausted as she was several minutes ago.

“If you think of a routine that would take about ten minutes, when you do get to try out for the Wonderbolts, you’ll not only impress them, but you’ll show them you’ve already begun to train as a Wonderbolt, and not just an applicant.” Blitz finished, glad that he was able to instill some wisdom into the rainbow-maned pegasus before him.

He began walking towards the edge of the platform, when Rainbow Dash’s voice drew his attention. He turned his head back toward her, a grin on her face.

“Hm?” he asked rather lazily.

“I still technically beat you.” she said, a sly smile spread wide on her face.

This elicited a grin from the stallion, who merely gave one nod of his head to her, cowcolt style. He turned towards his front again and flared his aching wings, about to take flight.

“Oh, and Blitz,” Rainbow Dash said, once again requiring Blitz to turn his attention towards her, eyebrow raised in question. “Apology accepted.”


-------------------


Blitz walked into his living room, still trying to dry his wings with a towel. He didn’t show it in front of the other ponies at the race, but he was extremely exhausted. And very sweaty. Very, very sweaty and exhausted. So the first thing he did when he got home was take a shower.

He still had one more stop to make today, and he guessed that it would not be in his best interests to show up dirty and drenched with sweat.

Blitz looked at the clock as he got comfortable on his couch. 17:23. Well, it actually read 5:23, but he still interpreted time as it were on a 24-hour clock. He had roughly two hours before Luna raised her moon. He used to enjoy watching Luna’s moon as it took over the sky. The soft glow it spread over the world, the stars, and the night. But now...

Blitz shook his head free of his thoughts. Now was not the time to think like that. He had places to be, things to do, and dabbling in his thoughts would not help him to complete his goals. He quickly downed two apples he bought from Applejack the other day, and set out into the small village of Ponyville.

He could already tell by some of the looks that ponies were giving him that he was now some what famous in town. Or quite possibly infamous. He did, after all, humiliate their resident weather mare and mini-celebrity, Rainbow Dash. But he didn’t pay much attention to them. He had to make his way to Carousel Boutique.


-------------------


“Welcome to Carousel Boutique! I’ll be down in a moment!” chirped Rarity from somewhere upstairs. Blitz could hear the clop of her hooves against the floor as she made her way towards the stairs.

“Dresses can be found towards the back of the store, while stallions’ clothing can be found towards-” she cut herself off when she spotted Blitz. “Oh. It’s you.” Rarity said in a low tone, a hint of venom seeping into her words.

“Yes. It’s me.” Blitz responded, meeting her gaze.

Rarity trotted over in front of Blitz, her eyes trained on his. “Can I help you?” she asked simply.

Blitz couldn’t help but smile slightly at this. Whether it was her mocking his simple statement he made last night, or whether she was just attempting to be a gracious store owner, he didn’t know. But it amused him nonetheless.

“Ah, no. I just came here to apologize for the way I acted last night. I shouldn’t have brushed off the party. I didn’t know it was a tradition you had here in Ponyville.”

Rarity’s expression turned to that of surprise for a moment, before going back to its previous state. “Oh, hm. Apology accepted.” Rarity responded, before turning back to work on some of her designs.

While normally Blitz would have been glad that his visit here was short, he was unconvinced that Rarity was sincere in accepting his apology. “Wait, that’s it? You’re just going to accept my apology, just like that?” the stallion asked, suspicion in his voice.

Rarity turned back towards him and blinked in confusion. “Yes. You apologized like a gentlecolt, so I saw no reason not to accept it.” she stated, as she trotted back over to the green pegasus.

“Now, if you don’t plan on buying anything, I will ask that you leave. I am very busy, and have a store to run.” Rarity said, trotting over to some dresses to inspect them for any flaws.

Blitz thought for a moment before saying anything. “Actually, winter is approaching, and I don’t happen to have a coat to wear. I don’t suppose you have anything I could try, do you?” he asked, walking alongside Rarity.

“Oh, of course I do, darling!” Rarity’s face lit up at the idea of Blitz being interested in an article of clothing. “While I do mostly have mare’s clothing, I have a bit of stallions’ apparel for those that decide to come here.” Rarity said, leading Blitz over to a small section of her store that contained coats and winter apparel.

Blitz could see there were all different styles of coats all varying in color. “I don’t seem to have any that would match your coat, dear.” Rarity said, a hint of annoyance present in her voice. She scanned over her inventory before her eyes lit up again. “Aha! How about this one, darling? It matches your eyes perfectly!” Rarity exclaimed, levitating a thick blue coat out from a rack.

Blitz studied it for a moment, then shook his head. “No, how about... This one!” Blitz said, pulling a plain-looking black coat out, and holding it up to Rarity.

Rarity’s eyes widened slightly at the lack of style and fashion of the coat. “Black? But why? And it’s just so... So bland, darling.” Rarity said, curiosity filling her voice.

“Well, bhlack doesh abshorbh more heat than lighter colorsh.” Blitz said, the coat impairing his ability to speak properly. He waited until Rarity had levitated the coat for him before he continued. “And I’m not looking for style. Just something to keep the cold at bay.”

Rarity thought for a moment before responding. While she did make it a habit to have the customer buy the most fashionable clothes, the customer was always right, and if he wanted the coat, it wasn’t her right not to give it to him. “Well, I do suppose it goes with your mane.”

Rarity began trotting towards her register, before she stopped, suddenly realizing something. “Oh, I completely forgot that this was an earth pony coat. And I don’t have any versions to suit a pegasus. And with all the work I have piled up to do, I probably won’t be able to modify it until tomorrow.” she said with an apologetic tone.

“It’s alright, Rarity. I didn’t bring any bits any how.” Blitz said. He wasn’t really that in need of a winter coat anyways, so it didn’t bother him much. “I’ll just come back in a few days.” he said as he turned to leave the boutique.

He stopped mid-step on his way to the door however, something catching his eye towards one end of the shop. He trotted over, making sure it was what he thought it was. Why, yes, yes it was exactly what he thought it was: a black bowler hat. Blitz let out a small “Aha!” as he recognized the odd piece of head wear.

“What is it, darling?” Rarity said as she trotted over to where Blitz was.

Blitz did nothing but grin. “Watch this.” he said. He took his right wing and flipped the bowler hat into the air, and Blitz extended both his wings as it came down. The hat landed vertically on the top of his wing, rolling on it’s brim as Blitz slowly lifted his wing to give it speed. It continued across his back, and onto his other wing. As it reached the tip of his wing, Blitz flipped it into the air, and it landed neatly on his head.

Rarity stomped her hooves on the floor in applause. “My my, bravo! Where ever did you learn such a trick?” Rarity asked, entertained by the small display Blitz had put on.

“My father used to own one of these, you see, and I suppose I just got bored one day.” he explained. He trotted over to the register and set the hat down next to it. “My uncle taught me to do that. Do you think you could wait a moment while I go get some bits? I think I’d like to buy this.” he said to Rarity as she followed him.

“Oh, nonsense, darling,” she said as she levitated the bowler hat back onto his head. “You can have it for free. I didn’t even know that was in my shop,” Rarity added, looking over in that section for anything else that she might not know was there. “and I doubt anypony would want to buy it, what with it being so out of style and all.” she said, then saw Blitz’s expression. “No offense.” Rarity said sheepishly with an apologetic smile on her face.

“It ain’t no problem, Rarity. And thank you.” Blitz said as he trotted over to the door. He turned his head back and tipped his new hat slightly to the mare before he left. It wasn’t the stetson he had when he was younger, but it would do.


-------------------


Two days had passed, and it was the day of what Pinkie had dubbed the “Re-Party,” and when Blitz was interrupted from reading by a knock on his door, he had to check his clock to make sure he hadn’t accidentally missed it again. Luna knows he wouldn’t want a repeat of last time.

“Hello, Twilight. What are you doing here?” Blitz asked the purple mare, who stood in his doorway.

“I’m here to collect you to make sure you don’t miss the party this time.” Twilight said.

“‘Collect me?’” Blitz asked, a bit confused at her choice of words.

“We’re just going to go over to the Library until it’s time to head to the party.” Twilight responded, stepping aside to let Blitz out so he could follow her.

“Where’s Spike?” Blitz asked once they had reached the library. He had visited once or twice over the past two days, and each time the purple dragon had been here helping out.

“Oh, he’s over at Sugarcube Corner helping set up,” Twilight explained, trotting over to the center of the library. “I don’t really know what you could do for the next hour. I suppose you could just find a book to read. That’s what I do to pass the time.” she said, looking around for a book she herself could read.

“I’m not exactly in the mood for reading at the moment,” Blitz said, taking a seat in one of the few chairs in the library. “You don’t happen to have any tea, do you?” Blitz asked Twilight. Ever since having some of Fluttershy’s tea a few days ago, he had acquired a taste for the drink.

“Oh, yes, I do. I’ll go make a cup.” Twilight responded, walking into the kitchen.

For most the hour that followed Twilight and Blitz spent their time talking to one another. Their topics varied, from the various books they’ve read over the years to the party that was soon to come.

“If you don’t mind me asking, what exactly does your cutie mark represent?” Twilight asked suddenly.

Blitz was a little taken aback by this. Mostly out of surprise that the topic hadn’t come up yet, than it being a sensitive question. “It mostly represents my interest and wide knowledge of history.” Blitz said. After noticing Twilight still had a confused look on her face, Blitz looked back at his flank. “Oh, yes, military history to be exact. That’s what the crossed swords mean.” Blitz said.

“Military history? But Equestria hasn’t had any wars.” Twilight said, a little confused at what he was talking about.

“Ah, but that’s where you’re wrong, Twilight. You forget the times when Equestria was not ruled by ponies. The Griffon Wars, the many different conflicts fought during the ancient Draconian Age.” Blitz said, taking on a rather far-off tone, as if he were telling some ancient tale.

“History is a marvelous thing. It’s been a dream of mine to be written down in it one day, immortalized, for generations to come. To become a legend.” Blitz’s voice dropped with his last sentence.

“I suppose that is an interesting thing to think about,” Twilight said, pausing for a moment. “I suppose being the Elements of Harmony, my friends and I have already been written down in history.” Twilight said, smiling a little. “But it is a little sad to know we won’t be alive to see history unfold hundreds of years from now.”

Blitz chuckled slightly at this. “Not necessarily...” he said, rather quietly.

“What?” came Twilight’s response.

“Oh, nothing. We should probably be getting to Sugarcube Corner, shouldn’t we?” Blitz asked.

“I suppose so.” Twilight responded, heading for the door.

Blitz pulled a small flask of Apple Cider out from under his bowler hat and took a swig. “Allons-y.”