• Published 28th Nov 2012
  • 6,272 Views, 111 Comments

Read it and Sneak - hawthornbunny



An alternate ending to 'Read it and Weep', where Dash decides to steal Twilight's Daring Do book.

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Read it and Sneak

Rainbow Dash's hooves clung tightly to the armrests of her wheelchair as the nurse pony whisked her out of the hospital lobby far faster than necessary. The doors opened up with a slam and she was thrown outside into the beautiful sunny day, trundling to a stop on the path outside.

Normally, the first thing Rainbow would have done in this situation would be to test out her newly healed wing. But Twilight had to show up with... that book.

Daring Do and the... what was it? Rainbow Dash couldn't even remember the name. It hadn't mattered. She only cared about what was going to happen to Daring Do now.

The adventurous mare was going to be killed, that much was certain. There was no way she could get out of the trap she had been in when Rainbow Dash had been forced to put the book down. Dash couldn't even conceive of a way in which she could escape. But there was still fifty pages of the book left! Could there be more story after that? And didn't Twilight say there were more books?

She looked back toward the hospital, pleading to be let back in, but the doors slammed shut, leaving her in disappointment.

"How will I ever find out what happens to Daring Do?!" she cried.

She launched herself out of the wheelchair and gave it a frustrated kick, sending it into the bushes. She began to pace outside the hospital, trying to plan, but the thought of Daring's fate was distracting her.

"I can't take this!" Rainbow Dash said to herself as she trotted back and forth. "Is Ahuitzotl going to get away with the statuette? What's going to happen to Daring?"

Grrrr, think, Rainbow Dash. What would Daring Do do? Something clever, of course. Some crazy plan that required wits and daring, a certain look-danger-in-the-eye-ness that Rainbow admired greatly.

"A-HA!" said Rainbow Dash, her ears perking upward as an idea came to her. "Twilight has a copy of the book!" But her triumph quickly turned to embarrassment as she remembered how that conversation had gone. "But I can't ask her after I called her an egghead and all..." She leaned back and flopped on the ground, even more frustrated.

Then it hit her. She knew exactly what Daring Do would do in this situation. There was a priceless artifact, belonging to a powerful wizard, locked in a magical fortress with a guard dragon.

She would steal the book from Twilight.

***

Borrow. Rainbow corrected herself as she flew across the fine blue sky toward her home. I'm going to borrow the book from Twilight. If I can steal it, I can put it back. She'll never even notice it's gone.

Her wing was still aching a little and she knew she wasn't going to be doing much more flying than this today. But she could at least get home, and prepare her sneaking gear.

She glided to the clearing where her cloud home hovered high above the grassy ground, the enormous cloud tower balanced impossibly on an insubstantial foundation. All of her friends told her that her home looked magnificent, but she couldn't see it herself. This was pretty standard Cloudsdale design. She rarely even bothered to fix the leaks in her rainbow pipes. Still, she did love her home just for its easy access, which allowed her to glide straight into her bedroom and land on the sturdy cloud floor.

For a moment she was taken by surprise. The room was looking a lot tidier than it had when she had left it a few days ago. Her duvet was clean, the mattress looked as fresh and fluffy as a cirrus cloud, and all her meteorology gear had been stowed in an alcove. Oh, of course. Fluttershy. Rainbow remembered. The yellow pegasus had insisted on looking after Tank while Rainbow was in hospital, even though Rainbow was pretty sure a tortoise could handle itself for a few days without any problems. She had a suspicion that Fluttershy just wanted to interview her pet to see if he was being looked after properly.

However, it was annoying that Fluttershy had chosen to tidy up the place, as now Rainbow couldn't find what she was looking for. She opened up her wardrobe and began searching for her sneaking outfit, hangers clattering as she swept aside the few items of clothing she had. Eventually she found it neatly folded on the bottom of the wardrobe next to a pile of old socks: a jet black, one-piece bodysuit that would hide her bright mane and coat.

That's not gonna be enough. Rainbow thought to herself. This is Twilight we're talking about. She probably has magical detectors and magical forcefields and magical laser tripwires.

She searched her drawers for other items that would be of use, but came up empty. Stealth just wasn't something a stunt display performer was accustomed to. Even her sneaking outfit had been a gift from Pinkie...

"Pinkie Pie! Of course." Rainbow said, rubbing her hooves together with a gleeful chuckle. Pinkie would certainly have the kinds of items Rainbow was looking for, and even better, was the only pony who could be sworn to total secrecy about it. She stowed her suit in a black saddlebag, and leapt out of her window again.

***

"I'm afraid Pinkie is elsewhere today," said Mrs Cake, her voice muffled inside a baggy, silver suit with a transparent faceplate. "The authorities say we need to wait a few days for the radiation in her room to fall to a safe level. I believe she's staying with Ditzy Doo?"

"Oh, okay. Thanks, Mrs Cake." said Rainbow.

"Would you like something for the road?" she asked, pulling over a box and opening it to reveal a dozen muffins with what looked like chocolate chips, except they were green. Very green. In fact, Rainbow was sure chocolate chips weren't supposed to pulsate ominously like that. "It's on the house."

"Er, no thanks, Mrs Cake." said Rainbow with a nervous smile. "I just got out of hospital, you know what they're like. Eat your veggies, get three solid meals, blah blah blah. Thanks anyway!"

Mrs Cake nodded sadly and sighed, putting the box back onto a huge pile of unsold items, as Rainbow Dash left, smiling at a tiny pegasus foal who was hovering in the doorway in his own baby-sized radiation suit.

Ditzy's home was a few streets away, so Rainbow headed there on foot, cutting through the marketplace. Applejack was there with her stall as usual, but she was doing a roaring trade today and didn't have eyes for anyone but her customers. Rainbow Dash slunk through the crowd unnoticed.

At Ditzy's door, Rainbow Dash grasped the golden knocker in her mouth and gave it a solid couple of knocks, before stepping back several steps to put some distance between her and the door. Rainbow had had plenty of first-hoof experience of how dangerous it was to be in Ditzy's vicinity.

The door opened moments later, and two yellow eyes appeared out of the shadows, each searching independently for whoever had knocked. A moment later, the grey mare emerged into the sunlight, smiling as her eyes managed to lock on to Rainbow. "Oh hey there, Rainbow Dash!"

"Hey Derpy," said Rainbow, still standing well back.

"How's the wing? Pinkie told me what happened." said Ditzy, with a sympathetic frown. "I know what that's like, I once broke both my wings at the same time."

"Ouch!" said Rainbow, suddenly horrified. "How in Equestria did you do that?"

"Lighthouse." she said, but didn't elaborate. "So what's up? Weather emergency?" She looked up into the cloudless sky. "Sun emergency?"

Rainbow Dash shook her head. "Everything's fine. I'm looking for Pinkie?"

"Oh!" said Ditzy. "Pinkie Pie is staying with me for a few days." She turned around. "Hey, Pin-"

A pink blur suddenly shot out of the door, slamming into Rainbow Dash and sending her crashing into the house opposite. A flowerpot wobbled and fell onto her head with a crack.

"OW!" Rainbow Dash yelled at the pink pony now standing over her. "PINKIE! What is wrong with you!"

"I'm sorry, Dashie!" said Pinkie, her eyes wide in alarm. "You were in danger! You really shouldn't stand in the middle of the road."

A wagon suddenly shot past at tremendous speed, whipping all three pony's manes and tails to one side.

Rainbow Dash watched it speed down the street, and rolled her eyes. "Pinkie, I'm not blind, I can see when there's traffic coming. But thanks anyway."

She pushed Pinkie away and stood up, grimacing as her bad wing gave a jolt of pain. She stretched it out tenderly, but luckily it still seemed to be in one piece.

"So what's up?" asked Pinkie cheerfully. "Are you out of hospital now?"

Rainbow snorted, flicking flowers and dirt out of her mane. "Yeah, they kicked me out. Iiiii... need to have a chat with you. In private."

Pinkie simply nodded, and they went back across the road to Ditzy, who looked rather curious.

Rainbow put a hoof on Ditzy's shoulder. "Sugarcube Corner are giving away free muffins." she whispered in the grey mare's ear.

The pair of wall-eyes widened, and with a sudden whoosh, Ditzy turned into a grey blur and shot to the end of the street, capturing somepony's hat in her slipstream as she disappeared round the corner. Rainbow chuckled and followed Pinkie into the house, closing the door behind her.

Seconds later, a piano fell out of the sky and smashed itself to pieces in the middle of the road.

***

"So..." Rainbow began.

"Veggie salad?" interjected Pinkie, offering a bowl of green leaves.

"No thanks." Rainbow declined politely. "I need some technical support. Got a little escapade planned."

"Say no more, Pinkie's got you covered!" said the pink mare with a grin. "So what is it?"

"Well..." Rainbow thought for a moment, "I shouldn't really say. It's secret. Need-to-know basis only."

"Aww, Dash, you know you can trust me to keep a secret." said Pinkie with a wink.

Rainbow frowned inwardly. Normally she'd have let Pinkie in on this straight away, but she hadn't forgotten that Pinkie had laughed at her along with everyone else when she'd told them she didn't read. Not to mention that Pinkie was hardly the most reliable of ponies. Only an idiot would bring her along on an important stealth mission.

"Nope, sorry Pinkie." said Rainbow, shaking her head. "It's top, top secret. Orders from, uh, Luna herself."

Pinkie's eyes narrowed suspiciously. "Princess Luna gave you a secret mission? Right after you got out of hospital?"

"Top secret." Rainbow repeated, rubbing a drop of nervous sweat from under her ear.

"Okie dokie!" said Pinkie, instantly brightening to her usual self. "So what do you need, Dashie? I don't have my full supply with me, obviously, but I've got climbing ropes, snorkels, suction cups, whoopie cushions, flippers, clippers, zippers, snippers, grappling hooks, railguns, little rubber balls with horns on the end that go HONK!, stink bombs, gas bombs, berry bombs, a little thing that goes around in a circle and cuts holes in glass -"

"Just show me the merchandise, Pinkie." said Rainbow with a grin. "And remember - TOP secret. Not a word to anyone, not even Derpy."

***

Princess Luna hummed cheerfully to herself as she guided her charge, a white stone orb of inconcievable size, through the night sky. Equestria slept peacefully below her. She had considered getting a little creative with her orbiting lately, although she would have to run it by her sister first. Any major lunar wobbles could have unforeseen consequences in Equestria if they weren't balanced by the solar orbit the following day.

Far below her, Rainbow Dash had her own concerns. She was locked in a moral battle with herself. "Is this the right thing to do?" she asked herself as she hid behind a tree in the town square. Twilight's tree-library-home was half a furlong away, and all the lights were off. Rainbow knew that Twilight often stayed up late studying, but it was past midnight and she was certainly in bed by now.

Rainbow was dressed in her sneaking outfit, which covered her from mane to toe in jet black, leaving only her face, wings and rainbow tail showing. "I mean, they all laughed at me when I said I didn't read. Obviously they think I should read the book..."

She frowned and stiffened. "It's exactly the same as if you're asking Twilight for the book, Rainbow Dash. You know she'd lend it to you. So all you're doing is... not asking, right?"

She shook her head, her mane squashed out of sight under her hood. "Daring Do wouldn't doubt herself like this. Here we go."

She crawled along the ground in long, reaching steps. Nopony was out at this time, but she wasn't going to take chances. Streaks of moon-bleached rainbow flashed from bush to bush as she shot between them, getting closer and closer to the tree house in a jagged route.

Rainbow poked her head out of a bush next to the front door. "Perfect." she whispered, wiping her brow. The sneaking outfit wasn't well ventilated, she could feel the sweat soaking her mane. "Now, I just need to figure out the best way -"

"Whooooooo?"

Rainbow shuddered, her eyes wide in shock, and threw herself back into the bush.

A shadow swooped overhead, flickering past the moon, a jar-sized winged creature. Rainbow punched her hooves together in annoyance. "Owlowiscious!" she hissed, before putting her hooves over her mouth. Owls had superb hearing and her narration was likely to get her discovered.

"Whoooo?" said Owlowiscious, his voice more distant. Rainbow watched him disappear over a row of houses. It looked like he hadn't noticed her. Must be hunting, she hoped. I'm going to have to do this quick before he comes back. Now, how do I get in? Not the front door, obviously. That's the first place you'd set a trap.

She flew up to a wooden balcony on the first floor, and tried the wooden door set into the tree trunk, carefully opening it just a crack. She was in! It was too easy. Twilight obviously had no sense of security... Rainbow hmmed. Twilight Sparkle was a clever and dangerous opponent, with powerful magic at her command. She'd want Rainbow to think it was easy.

Rainbow Dash pulled open her saddle bag with her mouth, and took out a small pink toy, round and fluffy, with four shiny plastic wings and huge compound eyes. She chuckled, remembering the prank she and Pinkie had pulled at Sweet Apple Acres with these fake parasprites. Applejack had freaked out and spent a morning frantically running around the farm with a banjo.

Rainbow wound the key in the toy's back several times, before tossing it through the open door into Twilight's home. It flickered into life, wings beating faster than the eye could see, producing a dull hum as it hovered through the first floor. Rainbow watched for beams of light, shining eyes and sharpened logs swinging on ropes, but the toy simply flew to the other side of the darkened room and began bumping into the wooden wall.

Rainbow rolled her eyes. "I guess Twilight didn't actually learn anything from the book." she said, pushing the door open and slowly hovering in.

She landed gently on the floor, trembling a little with nervousness. This was the worrying bit - finding the book. She had no doubt that the book would be easy to find - Twilight would have seen to that - but that was assuming it was in the library. The way Twilight had described it, it had sounded like a personal copy, and that meant it was probably in her bedroom. Rainbow didn't think she'd be able to sneak in there.

She trotted down the winding wooden staircase to the ground floor, using her wings to keep her hoofsteps light. She groaned as her injured wing ached with the effort, but she was rewarded by the sight of shelves upon shelves of neatly stacked books, reflecting in her violet eyes as they widened with glee. She rushed to the nearest shelf and began looking.

"Fiction... A, B, C, D... wait, who's it written by?" she frowned. Then, over on a low shelf she saw it. A whole shelf of books with that bold, blocky logo that she knew meant endless hours of adventure and excitement in far-off mystical lands. "Yeeees!" she cried, rushing over to the shelf. There really was a whole series, at least fifteen books! Rainbow gave a gleeful little dance, and began to search through the books for the one she had been reading.

***

"Spike!" hissed Twilight.

Spike grumbled and turned in his basket.

"Spike! Wake up!" whispered the unicorn again, poking him with her horn.

"Ow, what, what?" grumbled the little dragon. "Twilight, it's -"

"Half past midnight," she said, as the dragon sat up. Twilight's head was silhouetted in the dark bedroom, but her eyes were bright and wide with concern. "Spike, I can hear someone downstairs. I think somepony has let themselves in."

"Well, they probably just want to borrow a book, don't they?" Spike said, yawning. "I'm sure they'll go away if you just wait a few minutes."

Twilight rolled her eyes. "I'm going down to see who it is," she said, her horn glowing softly, brightening into a white flare at the tip. "Stay here."

"Can do!" said Spike, settling back into his cushion as Twilight opened the door and began trotting down to the first floor.

A few seconds later, he frowned, knowing that guilt wasn't going to let him sleep. He flopped out of his basket and rubbed his eyes. "Hang on, I'm coming."

Rainbow's ear perked under her hood, interrupting her celebratory hugging of her acquisition. A shadow moved across the wall as a light source began moving upstairs. She listened to the light hoofsteps. Twilight!

"Oh, thunderclouds! What do I do?" she whispered to herself. She quickly slipped the book into her saddlebag, and crawled behind a large reading table with a golden unicorn head statue perched on top of it.

There was a squeak and a yelp from Twilight as she began walking down the stairs. Rainbow groaned. That was the parasprite toy, Twilight must have stepped on it. Luckily only Pinkie knew of Rainbow's involvement in the parasprite prank, so she was safe for the moment.

Twilight levitated the parasprite, a flicker of horror on her face which turned to a frown as she realised it wasn't real. She looked across to the open balcony door as Spike came down, dressed in a sleeping gown and slippers. "They came in through the balcony," she said, a curious look on her face as her horn glowed, telekinetically closing and locking the balcony door.

"Why?" asked Spike, his eyes sagging tiredly. "The front door is always unlocked."

"That's a good question," Twilight said suspiciously.

Rainbow shuddered, clutching the book to her chest as Twilight came down to the ground floor library, her horn-beam sweeping the room. The pegasus didn't dare to breathe. She wished she could just teleport out of here like Twilight could.

"I know you're here," said Twilight aloud, as Rainbow's teeth began to chatter. "Come out and give yourself up."

Rainbow watched the four purple hooves trot slowly past, waiting for an ultimatum, but none came. Twilight was likely just as unsure as she was in this situation. However, Rainbow did have one advantage: she'd come prepared.

"I'm not going to hurt you," Twilight continued, trotting toward Rainbow's hiding place. "Come on now, it's late-"

Twilight's horn flared as she saw a dim metallic flicker of light, a little chrome ball hurled by the hidden intruder. It shattered at her feet and splintered into tiny fragments which were quickly swallowed by an expanding cloud of rainbow-coloured gas.

"Aaah!" yelped Twilight as the colourful smoke exploded across the library, blinding her and stinging a little in her throat. She put a hoof to her nose and coughed. A large dark shape blew past her, faster than she could see, and scrambled up the stairs.

"What's going on?" called Spike, from the top of the stairs. He gave a cry as Rainbow Dash swept toward him, her eyes wide as she collided with the little dragon.

"Gah! Rainbow Da-?" Spike began to say, but Rainbow covered his mouth with her hoof and flew with him into a nearby room, bumping a table of alchemy equipment as she landed. She gasped, her injured wing stabbing with pain. This was not going well.

"Please, Spike, don't give me away." Rainbow pleaded as she shut the door and pushed a table in front of it. "I just want to borrow a book. Don't tell her it was me!"

"Rainbow, it's the middle of the night!" said Spike in disbelief. "Why are you sneaking?"

"I can't tell you. Pleeeeease, Spike. You know you can trust me!" she panted, pulling her hood down to give her mane some air. She made for the window, looking for the latch.

Spike scratched his crest awkwardly. "I... I don't know, Rainbow, she's gonna find out even if I don't tell her. Besides, I don't think you're going to escape now. That window doesn't open."

"Oh... horseapples..." Rainbow said fearfully as she heard Twilight's hoofsteps. She really should have planned this better. It would have been so easy to wait until Twilight was out of the house, but she just had to come up with a risky, daring plan instead.

"Spike! Spike! Hold on, I'm coming!" yelled Twilight. There was a bang as Twilight tried to open the door and found it blocked.

Rainbow Dash opened her mouth to give herself up, but yelped in surprise as something cold poured over her head and back. She turned around to find Spike emptying a bottle of purple potion over her.

"It's the best I could think of!" whispered Spike, as Rainbow felt a sickly squirming feeling in her stomach, her eyes bulging as her outfit and skin pulled tight and squeezed her so hard that she began to shrink. She looked at Spike in alarm as she suddenly came to his eye level, then shrank even further, the dragon becoming a gigantic monster lizard by comparison as she shrank to the size of a sparrow.

"Spike!" she squeaked angrily, fluttering her wings in a confused panic as Spike grabbed her and perched her between a couple of his tail spikes. The door glowed and sparkled pink, and burst open magically, a determined and worried looking Twilight standing behind it.

"Spike!" Twilight cried, looking him over. "Are you okay? Where is she?"

"I, uh..." Spike began, his eyes darting nervously. "I think she escaped! She pushed me into this room and barricaded the door."

"She..." Twilight looked at him suspiciously. "Spike, the door is barricaded from the inside. She's still in here."

Spike's cheeks began to flush red. "Yeah, uh... she..."

Twilight sniffed the air, her horn glowing again to levitate the empty potion bottle. Spike shifted around, the tiny Rainbow Dash clinging to his tail as he kept her out of view. "And that's my experimental Miniaturisation Potion, or was. She's in here, and she must be very small. Well, that makes this easier."

Spike backed toward the door nervously. "It does?"

Twilight nodded. "I haven't been able to make a stable Miniaturisation Potion yet, it only lasts for a minute or two. We just have to wait for her to grow back to her normal size, and then we've got her."

"What, uh, what makes you think she's still here? She might have escaped by now." Spike suggested, his sharp teeth grinning sheepishly.

"She's still here, Spike," said Twilight, looking down at her assistant sternly, "because you're covering for her. Who is it?"

Rainbow carefully leapt off Spike's tail and glided down unseen, landing underneath the alchemy table, just as Spike made a break for the door. She watched him grab the handle, only to find that Twilight's magic was keeping the door firmly closed.

I just need a crack. Any space small enough to fit through and I'm out of here. thought Rainbow. Her clothing and equipment had shrunk with her, and despite the tense situation it amused her to think that there was a tiny Daring Do book in her saddlebag. If only the Miniaturisation Potion lasted longer, she would happily have stayed toy-sized to read it.

"It's someone I know, isn't it?" said Twilight, the little dragon wincing under the interrogation. "Tell me, Spike!"

Spike cringed. "She swore me to secrecy, Twilight! I can't give her up."

"I appreciate your loyalty, but you won't have to." said Twilight. Her horn glowed brightly, and suddenly pink light began to shine in through the windows as a glowing forcefield quickly formed around the entire tree, enclosing it in an impassable barrier of magical energy. "Whoever it is, you're not getting out now. The quicker you give yourself up, the less annoyed I'm going to be."

Rainbow groaned. That was it. There was no way she could take on Twilight in her own library. Dejectedly, she began the long walk across the wooden floor to give herself up. As she reached the edge of the table, her stomach began to churn again and her insides bloated, swelling her back up to her normal size and shape. The alchemy equipment rattled as her head clunked on the edge of the table. "Ouch." she said listlessly.

"Rainbow Dash!" said Twilight, after a moment of surprise. "Of all the ponies I was expecting, you are pretty low on my list!"

"Believe me, she does have a list. I wrote it." said Spike.

Rainbow Dash groaned and collapsed at the unicorn's feet. "I give up. You got me."

"What in Equestria are you doing? You're supposed to be in hospital!" Twilight said in disbelief.

Rainbow sighed as she laid on the floor. She couldn't even think of a convincing lie. "I wanted to steal your book. This book." she said, opening her saddle bag. Twilight levitated the book out, bringing it in front of her eyes. "Daring Do? But you -" she looked at Rainbow, then the book, then thought for a moment, and her eyes lit up as she quickly put everything together. Her lips widened into a smile.

Rainbow Dash laid her head on the floor and closed her eyes. "That book is the greatest thing I've ever read. But they kicked me out of the hospital before I could finish it!"

"Wow," said Twilight, now sounding very amused. "I knew the books were good, but I didn't know they could drive a pony to breaking and entering!"

"Good? Try awesomely amazing. That book is undeniably, unquestionably, un-put-downable!"

Twilight nodded, the happy nostalgia of her first read coming back to her, making her smile dreamily. "Well, I'm glad it was just that and not anything more serious, Rainbow. But why did you try to steal it? You know I would have loved to lend it to you. I've tried for ages to get the others to read these, but they're just not as into adventure fiction as I am."

Rainbow's head and mane drooped sadly. "I was too embarrassed. I've made fun of you so many times for being an egghead. I just couldn't face the humiliation!"

"Oh, Rainbow, I wouldn't have laughed at you." Twilight said with a smile.

Dash raised a brow and looked up at her doubtfully. "Yeah, sure."

"Well, maybe a little," she admitted slyly, "but I'd never discourage anyone from reading! I think it's great that you've found something new to enjoy. That's worth far more to me than any amount of personal vindication."

Rainbow smiled and got to her hooves, looking Twilight in the eye. "Thanks, Twilight. I'm... sorry I broke into your house."

Twilight looked solemn. "As one egghead to another, I accept your apology. And I'm really glad you enjoyed the book." She levitated it back to the blue pegasus. "You can borrow any of the copies in the library, or my personal copies if they're on loan."

Rainbow pulled the unicorn into a grateful hug, smiling. "You're the best." she said, slipping the book back into her saddlebag. "I'll let you get back to bed."

She followed Twilight out of the room, stretching in preparation for flight as Twilight unlocked the balcony door, but suddenly she felt a tug on her tail. It was Spike.

"Rainbow... that wing is still hurting, isn't it?" he said, a wide, innocent look in his eyes.

Rainbow shrugged. "A little, yeah." she lied. It was killing her. The little dragon was more observant than she realised.

"Oh, no." said Twilight, shaking her head. "I know what that means. Spike, go up and set up the spare bed, please."

"Really Twilight, it's fine..."

"Consider it payback." said Twilight with a grin, levitating Rainbow's bags off her back. "You can read it in the morning, but for now, you're going straight to bed. Doctor's orders."

"You're not a doctor." Rainbow protested weakly.

"Not yet," Twilight agreed. "I'm not letting down the forcefield, Rainbow. Go to bed."

Rainbow was too exhausted to try to battle Twilight a second time. She trotted upstairs and collapsed into the spare bed just as Spike finished setting it up. Seconds later, she was snoring loudly and dreaming of adventures in the jungle.

Twilight came up moments later, and levitated the blanket to cover the pegasus properly, before slipping comfortably into her own bed. She considered fifteen minutes of lost sleep a good exchange for a new Daring Do fan - not to mention a new fan of reading, the greatest pastime in the world.

As the last light in the tree went out, the spherical pink forcefield shimmered and quietly melted away.

THE END

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Comments ( 111 )

I actually liked this alternate take on the episode. Kudos!

This. I like it. +1

EDIT: First story you say? Nicely done.
EDIT 2: Inb4 featured.

Ah ah, really good :rainbowkiss:

First story? Impressive.
The story was great. The idea was creative, it flowed well, and your style of writing is very smooth, not to mention error-free. The best part is that I could actually picture this as an alternate end to the episode. Worthy of a fav and watch for sure!
*edit* Wow, featured. Good job. It deserved it, for sure.

I shall read this later.

1701934
SWEET JESUS REGIDAR COMMENETED!?!?!?!?! THIS CAN ONLY MEAN THAT ITS A GOOD STORY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Nice! :rainbowkiss: I think I like this alternate ending more than the real show's ending!

I enjoyed this and it felt like the show. So bravo!

she looked at Rainbow, then the book, then thought for a moment, and her eyes lit up as she quickly put everything together. Her lips widened into a smile. I'm surprised nobody's posted this already, but...

:rainbowderp::twilightsmile: You like reading, don't you Rainbow Dash?

Great Job; I'm not usually into alternate endings but this certainly hit the spot. I would have also liked to see Rainbow's letter, wether you modify it or not: It will make the story more complete

Also, a few mistakes I saw:
"Everything's fine. I'm looking for Pinkie?"
That should be a period at the end
"Sugarcube Corner are giving away free muffins." she whispered in the grey mare's ear.
Should be is instead of are and it should have a comma, not a period, at the end of muffins
which turned to a frown as she realised it wasn't real
Realized, not realised
Rainbow sighed as she laid on the floor. She couldn't even think of
a convincing lie. "I wanted to steal your book. This book." she said,
opening her saddle bag. Twilight levitated the book out, bringing it
Dein front of her eyes. "Daring Do?But you -" she looked at Rainbow,
then the book, then thought for a moment, and her eyes lit up as
she quickly put everything together. Her lips widened into a smile.
Paragragh should be split when Twilight starts talking
Also, the character tags are a bit off: while Pinkie Pie and Ditzy are in the story, they aren't really prevalent enough to be put in the description of the story itself

Not actually much mistakes actually. trust me, I'm actually a proofreader for some other beginning authors

Wow, I totally didn't expect this response! I guess I shouldn't have doubted myself. Thanks for your comments guys! :pinkiehappy:

1702286

I figured she could still fly; just not without discomfort, and not for very long. That's why she's in such a bad shape by the end.

1702321

Thanks for your corrections. I always seem to have trouble with the whole period/comma thing :)

1702378 glad to help any beginning authors:twilightsmile:

1702362 have you ever Broken your leg or arm?
It hurts like F*** to even move it or put pressure on it. Now imagine that with a wing that has to support your whole body

1701934 Chinese special forces training manual :rainbowkiss:

have you ever Broken your leg or arm?
It hurts like F*** to even move it or put pressure on it. Now imagine that with a wing that has to support your whole body

In fact I've broken both my arms at the same time, which is where I got the inspiration for Ditzy's comment :) however, three things: firstly, pegasi are magical; secondly, avian wings are quite strange, and do heal surprisingly quickly; thirdly, if it was really that serious, the hospital wouldn't take off your bandages and throw you out in a couple of days. The doctor himself said that Rainbow was 'fine' and that she'd be back in the air in a few days, so clearly pegasus wings DO heal very quickly.

1702472 nah give her some Chinese stealth armour and maybe a couple stealth boys to be safe

Now that was a great story, a good alternate ending to that episode. Good portrayal of Rainbow Dash in this episode and a decent sense of humour. I look forward to reading more stories by you Hawthorn.

Loved the story! I hope you write more!

Wow, first story, feature box, high praises and all thumbs up? What's your secret? :twilightoops: I look forward to reading this first thing tomorrow morning! Congratulations on what appears to be a great story!

1703068

Holy Celestia, I'm featured? Wow! I just didn't expect this at all, I've never had any confidence in my writing ability. Shows what I know! Thanks so much, everyone :)

1703123
Yep, featured! Lucky you! Just read it now, I couldn't wait. It is very good, you certainly captured the characters personalities really well! I am envious of you right now! :twilightangry2:

1702035

...He wasnt first...:rainbowderp:

HIDE YOUR CHILDREN!!!!!

also well done. This hardly seems the work of an ametuer and I hope to see more quality work. like,fav, follow.

Do not disapoint me. :sithlestia:

1702103 Do you read everything? 'Cause it seems that way.

I admit, this was a good alternate ending. Characters in-character, realistic scenario in-universe and no forced romance like I was afraid there might be! *Salutes* Good work mate.

This was a great writing style!

I felt as if it really was an alt ending NOT by a fanfiction writer, too.

It felt as though our beloved writers themselves could have done it!


You have earned a favorite from me. :twilightsmile:

Its an interesting take, the radioactivity and the shrink potion seemed a little off cannon to me but other than that it fit pretty good.

I am still trying to figure out why Fluttershy was in town in the real episode and why she was smiling the whole time. Best i figured so far is sleep over at Rarity's seeing as they are both in bathrobes spa day or something.

But yeah good job. :twilightsmile:

This was an excellent piece. It read very much like an actual episode, which I know is quite hard to pull off. I noticed a couple of errors, but they weren't quite enough to detract from the story. Good job, hawthornbunny. :pinkiesmile:

Oh and:

reading, the greatest pastime in the world.

Damn straight.

Loved it :rainbowkiss: This could fit right into the actual show.

My favorite part was the line about infiltrating a magical fortress with a guard dragon. Real life is never as glamorous as the stories, even in a TV show :rainbowlaugh: And yet, she still screws it up, even with the dragon on her side. Poor Rainbow. That wizard was just too powerful :twilightblush:

This was really good. I kinda hoped for a friendship report, but it was good nonetheless

A nice variation on my favorite episode; well done!

Not to mention that Pinkie was hardly the most reliable of ponies. Only an idiot would bring her along on an important stealth mission.

Yeah Twilight, no one would be that silly!:rainbowlaugh:

1702220
I always think of this when this episode is mentioned....

Now, I'm going to have to re-watch Read it and Weep so I can keep my canon straight....because this was awesome enough to be canon that I might get the two confused....buck it, this is now my head canon.

Also, nice references to It's About time and One Bad Apple (I still don't get that salad joke Pinkie made...)

This is really amazing. I would have actually preferred that this be the canon story for what happened because it is that good. Keep up the good work in future stories.

Oh, that was adorable! Adorable and hilarious.

1704884

I am still trying to figure out why Fluttershy was in town in the real episode and why she was smiling the whole time. Best i figured so far is sleep over at Rarity's seeing as they are both in bathrobes spa day or something.

Actually, my biggest question is why Applejack is there - but with your sleepover idea, it's all starting to make a lot more sense...

1705824

buck it, this is now my head canon.

I'm honoured, thank you!

Also, nice references to It's About time and One Bad Apple (I still don't get that salad joke Pinkie made...)

Some friends and I are still puzzling over that too. I couldn't resist putting it in. ^^

Thanks so much to you all for all your nice comments and criticisms! I really can't believe the response this is getting. I might end up having to write my own letter to Princess Celestia about not doubting yourself... :twilightsheepish:

Great Story! :twilightsmile:
Loved the way it was executed.
Still... soo many things fell that day :twilightsheepish:
hope to see more.

That was enormously enjoyable! I've always particularly liked stories that feel as though they could make episodes, and this one really does deliver on that score. I was struck by the "experimental Miniaturisation Potion" thing: did something in the S3 preview inspire that, or was it coincidental? (I'm guessing you could make it if you found a way to control the effects of Poison Joke, given "Appletini" way back in S1.) I'm wandering off the topic now, though, so I'll mention that I really liked the way you wrote Spike; he was quite adorable in this. Mind you, you've got a cheek putting that "Veggie salad!" joke in just to remind me I still don't get it! :rainbowlaugh: Doesn't take away from how satisfying it was overall, though. This gets a :yay: from me!

1707123

I was struck by the "experimental Miniaturisation Potion" thing: did something in the S3 preview inspire that, or was it coincidental?

Nope, that was totally pulled out of nowhere. I was trying to think of a way that Rainbow could hide (there's not many places you can go in a tree), and that came to me. Twilight isn't known for being a potioneer, but I can well imagine that she dabbles in it.

I really liked the way you wrote Spike; he was quite adorable in this.

Strangely, Spike is probably the character I put the least effort into when writing. :)

Mind you, you've got a cheek putting that "Veggie salad!" joke in just to remind me I still don't get it!

I don't get it either! ^^

That's one other way to do it.

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