• Published 17th Jan 2012
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Skating Lessons - Sonic Rainblast



Rainbow Dash learns about virtues the hard way.

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Skating Lessons

Winter: a time of the year when the weather team would work to and fro distributing volumes of dark cumulonimbus throughout Equestria’s regions. Pegasi and clouds jam-packed with snow would be seen as a unit, traveling to cities and towns and providing them heaps of winter’s main element. While freezing cold air and long fights were downsides of this job, they were minor to the pegasi, for years of experience had taught them to cope with the seasons’ varying asperities. With this current season, snow was something most of them couldn’t wait to spend fun in, especially for one particular pegasus who was heading straight for Hoofington with a huge snow cloud filling her hooves and a cerulean scarf hugging her neck.

Just one more destination left in her queue, and Rainbow Dash would be finished for the day. While her wings were fighting against the glacial winds, thoughts of dominating snowball fights engrossed her mind from focus, an activity very suited for a pony with her character. The cyan pegasus would love to indulge in a snowball fight with her friends, or with other ponies in Ponyville. She would be launching snow left and right at her competition and manage to outshine them all in deftness and relentlessness. Of course, Rainbow would rather slaughter ponies with snow than endure long flights among freezing temperatures, but priorities mattered to her. While fifteen hours of nonstop work and incessant cold took a toll on her fur and wings, they had no affect on her steadfast grin.

I hope Applejack will be ready by the time I’m done, Rainbow Dash thought while adjusting her cerulean scarf. Thinking about snowballs fights would definitely evoke her friend, for Applejack had proved herself a rigorous rival in several of their brawls, plus persistent in their snow-catapulting contests. Her energy, like an infinite fire, continued despite the cold as the cyan pegasus saw Hoofington dead ahead. Just as this cloud probably couldn’t wait to release its light and fluffy content upon the city, Rainbow Dash was raring to join or create one heck of a snowball fight after this.

~~~~~

"Done and done!" Rainbow Dash proclaimed to no pony in particular. Despite her tuckered out wings and numbed hooves, the feeling of being done was thoroughly delighted. On her way back to Ponyville, she kept an eye out for any of her friends, or a snowball fight she could jump right into. There was bound to be. The level of the snow was high enough to cover a filly to her neck, not to mention the quantity of it in and around the town. No excitement in the outskirts it seemed, unfortunately.

C'mon. There's gotta be one happening somewhere.

Ponies were out and about with their business, from finding more decorations for their taste to merely admiring the wintry scenery during a carefree gait. Rainbow Dash increased her speed as she flew into town, where stores, abodes, and street lanterns were decked for the holidays. Her magenta eyes took in the spanning assortment of festive objects. Patterns of green and gold garland, wreaths with real berries on them, silver and gold bells, stars big and small, colorful lights, and even mistletoes were profuse and dovetailed on each and every facade. Rainbow couldn't help but smile at her town's spirit in the holidays. There were so much color and festiveness that it made her consider spreading the tradition in her home. Getting an evergreen tree and garnishing it with blue lights and Wonderbolt-themed ornaments would be fittingly perfect.

Rainbow chuckled to herself. She bet Pinkie Pie would go all out on decorating Sugarcube Corner. It was probably a crazy cornucopia of every possible holiday decoration plus candy (real or fake). All she knew was that candy canes were inevitable when it came to the perfect building embellishment.

After finishing her display gazing, Rainbow Dash concluded with a sigh that there were no snowball fights present. Landing with a soft crunch on the snowy ground, she switched to searching for any of her friends on hoof. Her wings really needed a break.

Rarity was ruled out; Rainbow figured she would be piled high with orders of winter clothes or better yet devising this season's fashion trend over an outmoded one. Fluttershy probably wouldn't be available either.

Because she swore to help every animal big and small to gather food for hibernation or to assist birds with migration, Rainbow recalled her friend’s enthusiastic words. Dismissing the conception with an eye roll, she continued her fruitless walk with her head down, unaware that she already reached the opposite side of Ponyville. It was until then that a sound infiltrated her train of thought.

"Huh?" Rainbow Dash looked up, realizing where she was and the sound that sidetracked her. She could only tell how it sounded; something was scraping or being scraped. Also, she heard laughter, laughter that was unquestionably familiar. Turning right to the distance, Rainbow found the source: Pinkie Pie was gliding across a frozen lake on her hind legs, forelegs stretching high to the air, wearing a surprisingly fitting sky blue scarf. (It must be because of her eyes.)

Over there was something a pony could do in her spare time. The site of activeness was only a trot away, but Rainbow Dash wasn't remotely intrigued by ice skating, for she deemed it too casual for her appeal. It was plausible for her pink friend to enjoy an activity such as this, on the other hoof. Sliding on ice did seem rather enjoyable, especially how Pinkie was currently showing it.

Taking muffled steps forward, Rainbow Dash watched the freedom Pinkie was displaying. Seeing the spins and jumps her friend performed had the pegasus' gaze fixated on the act, but there was a noticeable tinge of grace in them Rainbow Dash could discern. Graceful was one word that rarely described Pinkie, but apparently it did with her ice skating. Rainbow saw her execute several rapid spins at once and land faultlessly, ending up skating backwards and adding a "Woohoo!" to finish.

Woah, now that's new. Rainbow grew closer to the area as she was more captivated by the show. She thought ice skating was nothing but a boring and actionless waste of time, but witnessing Pinkie Pie flourish in the technicalities of it changed her biased perspective. Interest now had the cyan pegasus wanting to try, to try pulling off such cool tricks, to try gliding on the frozen field with Pinkie. Drawing near to the scene proved her growing curiosity, as well as her inattention to what was in her path.

"Ooof!" Her distraction caused her to trip over a concealed tree root, thus sending her tumbling down the path, unable to stop. "Pinkie Pie! Look out!"

Pinkie Pie was in the middle of a pirouette prior to Rainbow's warning. It was too late to evade as Pinkie was knocked forward by her incoming friend and they slid into a mound of snow. Seconds of inactivity passed until two heads popped out of the pile, shaking all the snow off.

"Oh, hi Rainbow Dash!" Pinkie Pie greeted in her usual fervor as though nothing had happened.

"Hey there, Pinkie Pie," Rainbow replied, grinning apologetically. "Umm, sorry for messing you up like that. I was coming down to see you, but then I tripped and rolled down the hill."

"Aww, no worries. I'm allll right," she assured as they came out. "But how? Were you spying on me?" A smirk played across her face. Rainbow knew she was kidding, so why was a feeling of bashfulness growing on her?

Luckily, it didn't affect her speaking. "Me, spying? Nah, I would never do that, especially not to my friends," she half lied.

"Okie dokie!" The smirk quickly shifted to a comfortable smile, and Pinkie Pie resumed her fun in a smooth glide. Rainbow Dash caught up to her in flight while noticing many twin trails that labeled her friend's treks. It was safe to say that she had been everywhere, marring the pristine surface with the blades of her skates. The side effect didn't pose as a concern evidently, for Pinkie was too wrapped up in her prime to regard.

"How long have you been out here?" Rainbow had to ask.

"Not too long ago actually. I had put the finishing touches on the Cakes' shop before I came here to ice skate. You saw it, right? I know you saw it, because how could anypony miss all lights and colors and snowflakes and stars and candy? Oh, and you wouldn't believe the trouble I went through to get some—"

"I getcha, Pinkie. You've made a masterpiece. You've outdone yourself," Rainbow halted her chattering with a sum up.

"You bet I made a masterpiece! And the candy canes made it look so perfect! You wouldn't believe how much red and white paste and sugar I had to swirl and twirl and mix around. Oh, and I even experimented with a few—”

"Anyway," Rainbow Dash rolled her eyes as she said that, "those were some pretty cool tricks you pulled back there, Pinkie Pie."

"Thanks, Dashie! Ever since I've been an itty-bitty, little-wittle, twinkie-Pinkie, I’ve ice skated as soon as the lakes froze solid.” The pink pony pranced high into the air—her scarf flowing elegantly behind her—and landed in reverse again before continuing, further impressing the cyan pegasus.

"Of course I've had my share of crashes and falls and slip-ups, but every winter I practice,” she passed Rainbow while balancing on one hind leg, “and practice," she passed by her again, sliding on her front legs, "and practice!"

As even more irrefutable emphasis, Pinkie Pie, with her eyes closed, executed an axel jump and dove into a velocious whirlwind of countless spins, all the while awakening a very thin mist of ice granules. Rainbow Dash slowly mouthed "woah" as the marvel absorbed her into gazing attentively. The delicate vapor seemed to captivate her the most; it looked like a super cool special effect surrounding the skater, like a radical icy aura.

She had to admit: ice skating had a few elements worth trying for, and that was one reason. Another reason was the pink mare herself who ended in a finishing pose similar to an enamored gentlecolt kneeling for the love of his beautiful mare.

"Pretty neat, huh?" Pinkie Pie said, her voice re-operating the gears in her friend's head.

To Rainbow Dash, saying "awesome" would have been an understatement. It was clear that her friend had skills as that of a pro ice skater. Like a real natural! Imagine how capable she had been in her fillyhood. The cyan pegasus almost did, and right now, she was fully influenced to give the sport a shot.

"Awesome, Pinkie Pie!" she called out to her and then flew to her. "Hehe. Who would've thought you had such skill in a sport? Best ice skating I've ever seen."

"Aww, you're just saying that," Pinkie smiled.

"But I mean it. And now you made me wanna try it. So whaddya say, Pinks? Will you, w-woah!"

Her request went incomplete as soon as she landed on the slippery ice, inattention plaguing her again. Friction couldn't assist Rainbow, and she fell down stomach first, hooves splayed helplessly. The comical slip brought Pinkie to laughter, but she knew what her pegasus friend was asking.

"Teach you ice skating? Sure thing! Anything for a friend, right?" She helped Rainbow Dash up to mid-air. "But you'll need ice skates, of course. Although this one time I skated with my bare hooves, and it was so much more fun! But only because the ice was reallllly, really, really—"

"Umm, Pinkie? Where can I even get four ice skates?"

"Oh, well . . ." The ones she had on were the exact ones she used for perforating the ice in last year's Winter Wrap-Up, the time of her last session. How so much fun that time was, how her vivacity got in the way of properly doing her job as ice scorer, how actually funny it was seeing Twilight crash into . . .

"Oh, yeah!" Pinkie awoke from her reverie. "I bet Twilight has some that she'd be glad to let you borrow."

"Twilight? She can ice skate too?" Rainbow Dash furrowed a brow.

"Nope. In the last Winter Wrap-Up, I asked her to help me with cutting the ice. She was super-duper happy to help, but Twilight was more crasheriffic than skateriffic. She spun all out of control and crashed into a pile of snow, with me and Spike in it. She wasn't cut out for the job, but at least her spirit counted."

Rainbow chuckled. Now that sounded more like their bookworm friend to have a blunder in a sport she never even tried. Good thing for herself, she will be given experience and practice about it, and by an expert, too. Rainbow wore a grin, a peculiar grin that showed she was opt to learn ice skating but also precipitated conceit.

“Alright, Pinkie. Be back in a flash!” The psyched pegasus sped off in a rainbow blur, heedless to the subtle pain still living in her wings.

I guess ice skating won't be so bad after all. It's just sliding on ice, so how hard could it be? Yeah, it'll be easy shmeezy. If Pinkie Pie can do it, so can Equestria's best flyer!

Rainbow nodded to herself as overconfidence ruled over her mind, giving her a view in favor of her ego. She believed the competence that expedited and sustained her skill in flying would help her in ice skating. If you mastered one thing, you could easily master another, right? If you pulled off a Sonic Rainboom, you could pull off something easier like ice skating, right? That was how Rainbow saw it, and she stuck to it like super glue. Her adroitness should pull her through without a doubt.

Before Rainbow Dash could prospect more from her delusion, a blue jay whisked past her, just inches away from contacting her head. She watched it go by in the distance before having a red cardinal grab her attention. Then a green jay and a yellow canary came to her field of vision and passed by.

What's with all these birds? Rainbow stopped after asking herself, and her answer was approaching her: a flock of various birds ranging from brisk hummingbirds to slow flamingos.

"Woah!" Rainbow flinched and covered herself as the multitude flew onward. Fortunately, none of the birds touched her. Her vision was aggravatingly obscured as well as sounds of flapping wings replacing the peacefulness. What the heck was with all of these birds, and where in Equestria could they be go . . .

Migration. How could she possibly forget? She was certainly lucky to come across the flock's path of travel in order to jog her memory. Rainbow rolled her eyes and resumed her flight to Twilight's home.

However, she didn't go far, for she flew straight into something, something that wasn't the size of a bird, but rather the size of a pony—a very soft pony. Plus, her visibility was overtaken by the color pink.

Who couldn't it be?

Rainbow Dash pulled away and shook her head, hoping for clarity to return. As soon as it did, she saw Fluttershy wearing beige earmuffs and a frilly pink scarf that accentuated her mane.

"Oh, I'm so sorry, Rainbow. Please excuse me for that," Fluttershy's gentle voice doled out an apology. "And excuse the birds, too. They're quite a hoofful."

"More like more than a hoofful," Rainbow retorted facetiously. "Lemme guess. You're taking those birds south for the winter, right?"

"Why, yes," Fluttershy answered, regardless of the vapid tone. "You know I always escort birds of all kinds to the southern part of Equestria, where it's all warm and thriving with summer." The smile she had on showed that she reasonably wished to spend time with what she loved: her animal friends and the longing season of summer. Sadly, her fidelity to the creatures in Ponyville was what kept her back. The altruistic pegasus had to stay true and attached to it, but that wasn't why her smile formed to a frown.

Fluttershy groaned. "Ooh, but that flock always flies ahead of me, no matter how many times I try to stay in front. All I wanted to do was help them."

"Then they must know where they're going, Fluttershy," Rainbow reasoned. "It's like a sixth sense they have, and right now those birds are following it, all the way to the South, heading to their destination."

She wrapped a reassuring hoof over her shoulders before concluding. "Sometimes you're just too helpful with animals, Fluttershy. I'm sure they'll make it safe and sound."

Fluttershy winced at the advice at first, but she softened to accept its credence. "Well, i-if you're certain about it."

"Of course I am! Have I ever steered you wrong?"

"Well . . . actually." She had rather not answer the inflated question, so she slipped in a previous facet to nix it. "Umm, speaking about destinations, where are you heading to?"

It worked like a charm. "Oh, I was just gonna borrow some ice skates from Twilight, because Pinkie Pie is gonna teach me all about ice skating. I may be new to it, but I know it’s gonna be a snap for me. I mean, nothing’s impossible for the winner of the Best Flyers Competition, right?"

Anypony could have concerned herself with the vainglory dripping from Rainbow’s last two statements. Alas, Fluttershy was all too preoccupied with hearing those two words. "Ice skating? That sounds wonderful! I wouldn't mind trying if I had the time. A-and some ice skates, too."

Fluttershy would have never imagined an audacious pegasus like Rainbow Dash attempt a more casual pastime. She shortly pondered why until an idea took place, an idea that excited her wings into rapid flutters.

"Oh, I know! How about I come watch you practice? I just have to take care of a family of porcupines and re-insulate the chicken coop first. I could cheer you on just like with your flying! Wouldn't that be great?"

"Uhhhh . . ." Rainbow scratched her head, uncomfortable from either to accede or from Fluttershy's wide smile. Her friend had spirit; it was only her extremely light voice that made the cyan pegasus unsure of agreeing. However, she couldn't say no for the risk of making her sad. And only to not make her sad.

"Yeah, sure, just like before. I would really appreciate the encouragement. Just make sure you cheer loud enough for me to hear."

"Oh, don't worry. I promise," Fluttershy nodded as she flew off to tend her tasks at home. Left alone, Rainbow gave a long sigh.

As long as she thinks she’s loud, it’s fine with me. Besides, I need somepony to watch me ace tricks in ice skating. Now to go get those skates.

~~~~~

"Aw, yeah!" Rainbow Dash, returning to the setting where another talent may be born, grinned in content at the specialized hoofwear outfitting her hooves. The new feeling of wearing them made her even more fired up on succeeding. She couldn't wait to grind the ice with her sleek blades and perform radical tricks.

Ice skating, here I come!

Finally arriving back, Rainbow spotted Pinkie Pie still skating to her heart's endless content. What she realized next had the cyan pegasus momentarily detracted from her fallacious endeavor, mouth agape.

There she saw Pinkie Pie going in a wide circle while holding her left hind leg up to the air, her body in a Y-shaped stance. Talk about indecent! Rainbow had never known ice skaters would execute such a suggestive act as part of some routine. If that was the case, the cyan pegasus would have rejected the sport automatically. Yet . . .

Why can't I stop looking?

Mind as well having her stimulated wings stiff while mid-air, Rainbow landed inaudibly at a good distance, still getting used to standing on four thin slices of metal.

As soon as she did so, her pink spectacle ended the shameless pose (thank the sun and moon), only to link it with a gyratory jump and into another volley of spins. This time, however, Pinkie Pie, still on one hind leg, crossed her hooves vertically and bent her right hind leg inward, turning herself into a spiral of cotton candy. Rainbow could have sworn her rotating was moving faster than her own racing speed; this was confounding. She watched carefully as Pinkie then leaned back at a least fifty degree angle, her locked hooves curved above her, and her practically eternal speed still continued. For several seconds, Pinkie maintained her amazing feat until erecting her form and decreasing her speed noticeably. Like a champion ice skater, she brought it to a close by decelerating to a stop, fanning out her hooves, and beaming the proudest smile Equestria has ever been graced with.

Now that was more of what Rainbow Dash wanted to do, minus the finesse that is. If it weren't for the ice skates, she would be clapping and whistling like an avid fan yearning for an encore. Anticipation permeated Rainbow much more than the prevalent cold. Competence was on her side, and with it, she just might attain the faculty her gifted friend had in ice skating.

"Hey, Dashie! You're back!"

Shoot!

Rainbow Dash did a double take to see if her wings were still active. Thankfully, they went down during her being captivated. Rainbow sighed in relief. Who knows what might have resulted had it not been for watching Pinkie's portrayal of prodigy.

"Yep! I'm back with my skates," Rainbow replied, dashing to the frozen lake's edge, and waved a hoof to display one. Pinkie Pie glided right to her friend. "Am I all set?"

"Yesiree bob! Now that you're prepared, Pinkie Pie's skateriffic skating lessons shall begin!"

And so does my time to shine, Rainbow thought, the overconfidence controlling her once again.

"Now first, we gotta see how good you are on the ice. It takes lots of balance to stand well on such a slippery surface. Think you got it?"

"Ha! I know I got it. Balance is my middle name," Rainbow assured with stains of brashness in her talk.

"It is?" Pinkie tilted her head. "Rainbow Balance Dash? Cool!"

"Ugh. No, Pinkie, it's just an expression. But anyway, here I go!"

Rainbow Dash faced the plane of frozen water. She could see herself out there: Rainbow would stream across the lake's circumference, cooperating with speed and incising her continual marks of awesomeness. With resoluteness as her mainstay, she would go forth with a triple somersault into the air and land impeccably, afterwards flashing a couple poses while in motion. For a different stunt, and to utilize some of her incredible speed, she would deliver one of the fastest spirals in the history of ice skating. After a (double!) axle jump, a high velocity spiral would bring to life rings of rainbow from her chromatic features while summoning tons of that icy mist around her and have it swirl its cool particles.

Ha, that would definitely be something awesome to feel. Rainbow Dash gave the surface a scowl. This was nothing. All she had to do was muster up all the confidence from wings to hooves, put all worries out, and step right onto the . . .

Holy horseapples!

As soon as metal contacted ice, the supposedly prepared pegasus slipped down onto her face when her front legs slid outward at a large and unbearable angle. Traction just straight out rejected her! Her whole face was now pressing against the cold, flat, and unforgiving ice. She definitely did not expect such a slip-up, and worst of all, Pinkie saw it.

"Oooooh," Pinkie Pie scrunched up, knowing that must have been painful, yet it was a tiny bit funny to see a quick fall like that. These kinds of mishaps always happen to beginners, even at the very start. "You okay, Dashie?"

A muffled groan was the reply as Rainbow Dash steadily set her hooves straight and pulling her face up, sounding like a sticky kiss lifting off of somepony's cheek. Yep, she gave the ice a huge smooch thanks to the fall.

"Blech!" Rainbow hung out her tongue in disgust, eliciting fervent giggles from the pink mare.

"I'm sorry, but that was pretty funny," she admitted between them. "I thought you said balance was your middle name." She converted her giggles into laughter now that she made it a joke. Rainbow's cheeks burned with embarrassment, while a fraction of her amassed confidence went into the inferno.

"Of course, urgh, it is," she struggled with her speaking and standing up. Balancing on these skates was like tightrope walking, but not that she ever tried it. As soon as she managed one hoof, it was difficult to manage the other. Plus, she couldn't even lift her hind legs without feeling the anxiety of falling again. Little by little, the confidence dwindled out of her with each failed attempt at something simple: standing. Underestimated by an inanimate object.

You've gotta be kidding me.

Discomfiture had always been a hateful ally, but why now? Why in front of the mare of her dreams? She groaned again and hid her glower in the ice. This stupid ice wouldn't give her one chance of starting properly. Why now must she be frustrated over an easy first step? Why?

By Celestia's wings, I can't get a bucking grip on this! Ugh! I swear this ice is such a—

"Want my help now, Dashie?"

Rainbow Dash shot her face up. The last thing she wanted was help. Learning from an expert friend would be okay, but in most occasions she taught herself. She didn’t need anypony’s help when it came to flying, and look at her now. But this isn’t flying; ice was her enemy now, and she wanted to let it know who was boss. As much as her dignity will be crippled, Rainbow felt this would be a good time for it.

"Yes, Pinkie Pie," Rainbow capitulated with a sigh.

"Don't feel bad, Dashie. You'll get the hang of it for sure," the instructor, as one should, kept alive the optimism.

Easy for you to say.

"Now then." Pinkie Pie slowly brought Rainbow Dash up and back to ground. "It's important to take it slowly, like baby steps. Start with one hoof, then the other, then the other, then the other! All the while having balance. Alright?"

A suspire with a nod was Rainbow's reply, proving herself prepared. "Alright. Here we go."

Facing her spot, the determined pegasus gingerly placed her right hoof on the ice. The slippery feeling returned, threatening to take over, but she knew how to counter it.

Gotta keep balance, she reminded herself. The essential whim finally cooperated with Rainbow, having now both of her fore hooves stable and straight. Mentally rewarding herself, she proceeded with the right hind leg. Miraculously, less trouble assailed her this time. Something she made so puzzling she now deemed it easy to grasp. Her fourth and final hoof was next, and with no problem it reached the crucial point of balance. There the novice ice skater stood firmly and proudly on top of her antagonist; no shaking, no faltering, no wobbling, and no bobbling were provoked, and all she needed was a little help.

“Alright, Dashie! You got it on your second try!” Pinkie Pie cheered. “I bet it would take days for most ponies to get used to standing on ice, but you did in it no time flat. How does it feel?”

Totally awesome!

"Eh. I've accomplished bigger things than this," Rainbow shrugged, indifference masking her spirit. It only took little effort to overcome, while it takes a lot more to execute perfect loops in the air continually. Just a mere setback. "I'm a pretty fast learner. So what's next?"

"What's next is part two: sliding!" Lunging forward, the pink pro skater slid straight across the lake's entirety and back, light winds flowing against her mane and scarf. "Just like with standing, sliding takes balance, and you have to be calm and in control. Let the skates guide you. Go with the flow. Easy peasy?"

"Lemon squeezy!" Rainbow nodded.

Why in Equestria did I finish that?

"That's the spirit!" Pinkie Pie giggled and jumped off the ice. "Let's get started. Come on, get on the ice."

The trainee did as she was told, steadily but finely re-entering the frozen plane, as well as confidence re-entering her. This cold, barren medium will soon be met by the speed, flair, and coolness of Rainbow Dash. As soon as she grew accustomed to the fundamentals, the tricks and techniques will be a breeze. As for right now, calmness and control were what she needed to procure. Looking straight ahead, Rainbow Dash was ready to confront again.

"Alright, Pinkie. Here I, w-woah!"

Just like her adamant train of thought, calmness and control fell completely apart when she felt something cool and furry touch her rump. Turning her head, she froze to see a wall of plush, pink hair pushing her to the precarious ice.

And this is how Pinkie can be too helpful.

"P-Pinkie Pie? What are you doing?"

"Helping you slide, silly! Why else did I tell you to stay calm? Now go on!"

Rainbow Dash was unable to retort after the pink pony fully pushed her onto the ice, her posterior feeling the all-around cold again. Letting out a small gasp, she squeezed her eyes shut, seeing herself slip and fall in failure. Yet, her face didn't meet frigid hardness, and wisps of air basking her face proved otherwise. Rainbow allowed one eye to conceive the reality, to see that she was still moving, her locked legs leaving behind two imperceptible parallel lines.

"Hey, I'm doing it! I'm sliding!" At last, and with an open smile, she was in command of herself. Having acquired the right levels of calmness and control, Rainbow Dash kept herself collected as the lake's edge grew closer by the second. The smooth motion and icy plain had its newcomer satisfied and forward-looking, letting her reach and jump off with no trouble.

"Way to go, Rainbow Dash!" Pinkie Pie called to her loud enough for the successful pegasus to hear. "You made it all the way!"

"I know! Thanks to you!" Rainbow called back in return. "Want me to come back to you?"

"Nah, you just stay there! I'll come over!" The pink pony went ahead onto the frozen field and gracefully skated to her friend.

Ha! In your face, ice! Rainbow sneered. What better way for her to celebrate an unscathed run besides gloating? Now who's on top? That's right, me! Just a few more steps, and me and my awesomeness are gonna be allllll over you. With Pinkie Pie teaching me, nothing can keep me down and out. Rainbow Dash is all too—

Crack! Splash!

"Waaaaaaah!"

The disruptive sound, followed by the scream, disbanded the pride in Rainbow. Snapping out of her thoughts, she gasped in unbelief to see half of Pinkie Pie clinging onto the surface for dear life. The ice in the middle had given way while she was crossing, and now adversity had trapped her hind legs and rear in its sub-zero claws.

"R-R-R-Rainbow D-D-D-Dash! H-e-e-elp!" Through clattering teeth and lowered body temperature, Pinkie Pie's shaky voice cried for help. Holding on she managed, but freeing herself was a different story. The water, mercilessly cold with the asperity of vitriol, clung to her flesh, assaulting severe shivers throughout. The tremors made her body and voice shake violently and, to Rainbow's ears, painfully.

"Oh man, oh man, oh man!" Rainbow bit her lip. The cruel ice was pressuring the pegasus to rescue Pinkie Pie, to save her without any assistance. As much as she wanted to thrive on her newfound hatred for the ice, getting over to the mare in distress was far too important. Little experience and the distance were two factors that opposed Rainbow Dash; despite those odds, two resolute hooves were set on their path. Promptly, she used her hind legs to push herself forward, just enough to start sliding. However, it wasn't a sufficient force to attain a good speed. In fact, she only moved around four hoofsteps, while Pinkie was several feet away.

"H-H-Hur-r-r-r-r-y, D-D-Dash-sh-shie!" The cry, quavered by the heartless, icy depths, had awakened more effrontery in Rainbow Dash. Buck this ice! She was going to save Pinkie no matter what, slippery ice or not! She threw her left side forward; balance was her only aide.

"Hang on, Pinkie Pie!"

Move, darn it! Let me move! Let me get closer!

Even if it wasn't a lifeless solid, the ice wouldn't let itself be dictated by the pegasus. Independence clashed between it and Rainbow Dash, but Rainbow kept on. Grunting, she then lunged with her right side in an effort to get closer, realizing that time she slid adequately. Watching herself, she repeated the process, and she earned the same result.

It's like a pattern, Rainbow verified. Ha! Now we're talkin'.

Left and right, left and right. Balance and focus. Calmness and control. Slide straight. Let the skates guide. Go with the flow. One side and then the other. Look forward. Save Pinkie Pie.

And Rainbow Dash is ice skating!

Few words can describe how the cyan pegasus felt for unlocking the movement of ice skating. It felt so simple; it was so simple! All this time she could've been out there, synced with her skates and psyched with attempting her ideal. All this time she could've been scarring the dreaded ice all she wanted, sliding profusely in triumph. And all this time she could've frisked and had fun with Pinkie Pie for all she cared, like partners, like close friends, like . . .

Right. Rescue now, feelings later.

"Gimme your hoof!" Rainbow Dash called as she approached, planning to pull her out while passing by (she knew how to only start, not stop). Pinkie managed a shuddering hoof up in reliance to getting out of the arctic death trap. Rainbow knew she will have to risk a hoof to securely grab her, but new levels of that lingering confidence had her ready in anticipation.

C'mon, balance. Don't fail me now!

Now sliding, Rainbow carefully lifted her right hoof high, only enough to grab Pinkie by the arm since the skates prevented hoof-to-hoof contact. Her speed was moderate, short-lived, but worthwhile. She neared the pink pony.

And . . . gotcha!

With lasting strength, Rainbow Dash locked her arm with Pinkie's and brought her back, pulling her out from the pony-made water hole. Algid residue trailed from behind as the rescued but fatal-stricken mare was dragged off of the a-cursed lake. Her shivering was extreme, her breathing was wavering, and it pained Rainbow to feel Pinkie Pie (of all ponies) so unbelievably cold and numb. Upon reaching snowy ground and slowly lowering Pinkie down, she inspected the damage: her mid-section to her hind legs took on a sick pale blue, an infectious stain from the below-zero water. Ever fiber in her once cotton candy-like tail was straight, saturated, and soaked. And most prominently, she couldn't stop shivering.

"Th-Th-Th-Thank you, D-D-Dashie," Pinkie Pie uttered quietly, her voice suffering as well.

She was in there for too long. Darn it!

"No problem. Just hang on, Pinkie." She held Pinkie Pie for little comfort, feeling the intense shivering. Where's warmth when you needed it? Rainbow Dash could see that Pinkie even had trouble standing. She needed to get her out of this environment and into a warm place. And fast.

"Oh my goodness!"

That voice was the answer to her problem. Rainbow turned to see Fluttershy landing before them. Of course she wouldn't expect to see one of her friends in such a terrible state; Fluttershy looked simply horrified.

"Pinkie Pie!" The shuddering pink mare was inspected by the yellow pegasus, too. "Dear me. What happened to you?"

"Sorry, Fluttershy, but no time for questions," Rainbow Dash interjected. "We have to get her someplace warm now!"

"O-oh, right. Of course. Let's get to my home. I have a fireplace I can quickly light up."

"Great. Now put her on my back so we can—"

Fluttershy could've done the order had it not been for Pinkie Pie to climb onto Rainbow Dash by herself. Surprise captured the pegasi, while that, plus the close contact, made the cyan pegasus blush and shudder herself. Much shaking and little warmth were mixed together, and they were hugging her tightly.

Pinkie Pie . . .

But now wasn't the time for repentanc. Bringing her to Fluttershy's home was her main focus. With the yellow pegasus' reliability for keeping Pinkie safe and secure, Rainbow Dash galloped as fast as she could.

~~~~~

"Hippowhathia?"

"It's hy-po-ther-mi-a," Rainbow Dash repeated in syllables for the third time after a sip of cocoa. "Fluttershy said it's a condition in which you feel so cold that your body temperature drops. And a low body temperature means you could have . . ."

"Freezed to a pony popsicle," Pinkie Pie substituted, knowing her friend didn't want to finish in a bad way.

"Yeah, that." Rainbow still hung her head in guilt.

"But I'm okay now. No more frostbitten legs or frozen rump! No Pinkie Pie popsicle!"

It was true. Laying near the tranquil fire and snuggling in a cocoon of comforters, Pinkie Pie had already revived her natural chipper mood. The recovery was inexplicably fast, but all was thanked and blessed for her being back to normal. Fluttershy's cottage, the fireplace, the thick, wooly comforters, hot lemon tea, and several ginger snaps had contributed their warmth to healing the pink mare. Alas, none of them could do the same for their other recipient.

"But I'm not okay," Rainbow continued beating herself up, her voice leaden with sadness. "Any more time I wasted back there and you wouldn't have survived for sure. I felt so useless when I tried to get to you, like I was letting the stupid ice hold me back on purpose. I could've saved you sooner."

"Stop being silly, Dashie." Underneath that appeal was a tone of seriousness Rainbow Dash was surprised to hear from her. "You saving me is what really matters, and that we're here all cozy-wozy. So what if you struggled? You overcame it! You know how to skate! And you finally showed that ice who was boss after all!"

Those three remarks lifted the pegasus' head and spirit up. A moment of ecstasy did run through her veins when she had figured out the proper motion of ice skating, and indeed she had done it by herself. While it did purport her assertion as a fast learner, most of it wouldn't have been possible without Pinkie's supportive talk about balance. If it wasn't for balance, Rainbow couldn't have overpowered the rebellious ice; if she hadn't befriended it, there would probably be one less pony in Ponyville.

Taking a reflective look at her ice skates near the door, Rainbow Dash forged a smile. "Yep. I guess I did. Thanks, Pinkie." She resumed to her hot, flavorful beverage.

But I still hate the ice.

"I should be saying the same thing to you. Oh wait, I did, when I was all 'Brrrrrrr'!" Pinkie Pie imitated her teeth clattering and chuckled.

Rainbow rolled her eyes, but the gladness didn't fade, part of it being the revelation. In spite of the inevitable dealing with ice, she would tackle ice skating again now that she had conquered the basics. Of course, the yearning for some cool tricks was still at mind, but Rainbow decided to accept time, practice, and patience. All she knew for now was starting and staying straight, which were sufficient skills for cutting ice when she thought about it. Heck, no pony said she couldn't work two jobs in Winter Wrap-Up.

Besides, next to desiring radical tricks, Rainbow Dash couldn't wait for the chance to embark on frozen water with Pinkie Pie: her teacher and her very close friend.

"Are you feeling well, Pinkie?" Fluttershy's voice entered the living room as the kind pegasus came to check.

"All peachy! I gotta hand it to you, Fluttershy. You sure know how to warm a pony up. I feel like I could throw three parties at once and not miss a thing! All thanks to you."

"Of course I had to get you all warm and toasty," Fluttershy accepted the gratitude with a smile. "Who would I be if I were to let anypony or any creature suffer from hypothermia?"

"You got that right! Hey, got any more of those ginger snaps?"

"Sure! What about you, Rainbow Dash?" Fluttershy asked the preoccupied cyan pegasus who was staring at her sepia reflection rather than drinking it.

"Hmm? Oh, sure, I'll try some," she answered nonchalantly.

After feeding the fire more firewood, the yellow pegasus went back to retrieve more of the complementary treat, leaving her guests in privacy again. Pinkie turned to notice her friend still looking down at her hot cocoa through listless eyes, seeming so deep in thought, seeming so . . . depressed. This was a time of rest and relaxation, not of regret and contemplation. Regardless of what Rainbow was silent about, the pink mare refused to let self-regret consume her. In fact, she knew just what to do.

"Ya know, hot chocolate is for drinking, not for staring at, Dashie," Pinkie Pie quipped in her approach to wake the pegasus up from idle speculation. "It's gonna get cold."

"Hmm? Oh, I'm just thinking about being such an awesome skater like you."

So far so good.

"Aww, but I bet you will. You're Rainbow Dash! You're the best flyer in Equestria! You can do anything!"

Like I haven't told that to myself, Rainbow thought in retrospect. Not even Pinkie's exaggeration could alleviate her sorrowful quietude, for those words carried the same vanity Rainbow did not want to depend on again. The ice had taught her that lesson the hard way. Still, it was somewhat relieving that somepony has such confidence to uplift her self-esteem. Knowing Pinkie Pie, it was guaranteed.

Rainbow Dash couldn't help a small smile. "Yeah, if you say so, Pinks."

"And I know so," she averred, becoming closer to the real matter. "But even an awesome pegasus like you needs one thing."

"Which is?"

"A pony to share warm fuzzies with."

Rainbow Dash could’ve sworn the warmth in the atmosphere grew twice as much. It was obvious what Pinkie Pie was trying to hint among the cajoling that won her attention. They were away from the niveous nature and were under temperate tenderness, so why not? There was her target of affection offering to share intimate quality time under a comforter and near a fire. The reality was within reach, yet Rainbow Dash was hesitant. Pinkie seemed not to care about the possible complications if their feelings were to consummate. How much would it affect? What would their friends think? Does she even deserve affection from the fun-loving, energetic, adorably cute, beautiful . . .

What am I thinking? I do deserve her warm fuzzies!

“I’ll be glad to, Pinkie Pie.”

Finishing the last of her lukewarm chocolate, Rainbow Dash proceeded to joining the pink mare in everlasting warmth. Pinkie Pie raised up the right side of the comforter, revealing a spot perfect for close snuggling. Rainbow slowly and gladly entered the embrace of the fire next to them and Pinkie's right hoof. Comfortable heat subdued the cyan pegasus as it circulated its grace around her, easing her heartbeat. A shy blush showed how smoothly Rainbow was taking it in, how thankful and happy she was for this intimacy. A peach-colored glow on Pinkie's left cheek from the fire made her all the more attractive. Yielding to the indulgence, Rainbow Dash nuzzled Pinkie Pie, satisfying the affection growing between them. Pinkie heartily complied, completing the connection. Passion and care were traded and cherished as they slowly departed from each other and then losing themselves in the beauty of each other’s eyes. The moment felt as though it could last forever, the silence—aside the cackling fire—a witness of their time together. The moment felt perfect.

“Hmm, I just thought of something. You could’ve used your wings to save me.”

Maybe too perfect.

The silence betrayed her as it was pretty much her answer. All Rainbow Dash could do was sigh, for there was no point in recalling the guilt again. However, the mare who she shared feelings thought otherwise as she gave more words of relief.

“But I don’t care. Actually, I’m glad you went with tackling the ice and managing to prove it in its face who was boss. I’m very proud of you, Rainbow Balance Dash.”

As much as she wanted to make a comeback, Rainbow Dash practically accepted being called that facetious nickname, but it was a name only Pinkie Pie could call her. The sentiments resumed as Rainbow acquiesced with another heart-warming nuzzle. Resting their eyes and reveling in each other’s touch, the two mares lie with their heads coupled in closeness. The fire’s kindling and their interchanging warmth assured trust. They wouldn’t leave each other for quite a while.

It was too bad no ginger snaps will be eaten by them. Standing at the doorway with a plate full of them was Fluttershy, seeing her two friends lying cozily and safe and sound together. If it weren’t for the object in her mouth, she would be smiling. Such a sweet sight left her with no problems at all. Fluttershy placed the tray on a nearby tale with the same level of gentleness as her demeanor. She may not have had a chance to cheer outside, but before her was something she definitely could cheer for: a new relationship.

“Yay.”

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Comments ( 22 )

LOVE LOVE LOVE!!! :heart::heart::heart::heart:

136793 Too bad I didn't make the cut for EqD. I was so confident, too. XP

#3 · Jan 17th, 2012 · · ·

:rainbowkiss: :pinkiehappy: :yay: I love all Pinkie dash!!!!!!!!!

#4 · Jan 17th, 2012 · · ·

:rainbowkiss: :pinkiehappy: :yay: I love all Pinkie dash!!!!!!!!!

Fluttershy beat me to it.

"Yay"

#6 · Jan 17th, 2012 · · ·

It.. didn't make the cut? What the buck? (excuse my buckin language)

This story was so heartwarming and sweet it gave me diabeties. Love it!:heart:

136846 HOGWASH! :flutterrage: Lol, I've always wanted to say that... but seriously, you should be up there!

136846 Well then, I'm glad I'm here. YAY:heart: It's good to smile.

That was very cute! I loved it, I really did. Great job man. :yay:

That was cute, and lovely, and cute, and lovely, and also muffins (?)
I loved it, really, 5/5

:pinkiehappy::heart::rainbowkiss:
·
·
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:yay:

Don't care about shipping, but it's good to see a story about skating up here. Your understanding of the sport seems decent too.

I loved RD's overconfidence. Reminds me of my first time on the ice.

Just one thing: it's spelt "Axel", not "axle". The capital A is important, as it's named after Axel Paulsen.

Same thing with the Salchow and Ulrich Salchow.

flutteryay makes all things wonderful.

136846
Aww that's too bad, I loved this story and Ic an't imagine why they would reject it.
It was funny, harrowing, cute and touching in such a short space, truly a great story!

136846 You could always try the EQD rejects group.

BTW Loved the story.

Loved it. Pinkie's getting caught in the ice was unexpected, but it certainly lead to some great cuddles. :rainbowkiss::heart::pinkiehappy: ...But Pinkie was right, Dash really should have just used her wings. :rainbowhuh:

Great Story! :pinkiehappy: I loved every moment of it. :heart:

136846

I got shot down too buddy. This was a really well-written story and the shipping was icing on the cake. Good work. :pinkiehappy::pinkiehappy::rainbowkiss::rainbowkiss:

You have an advanced and superb writing style! :twilightsmile::yay:

Silver out!

Whew, glad Dashie got Pinks out of that jam before t hypothermia got worse :pinkiesad2:; wonder if RD'll continue doin these ice-skatin lessons with her new marefriend sometime in t future :duck:?

You Were Handiling Some Pretty Rough Stuff For Kids Cartoon I Mean Hypothermia? And "What am I thinking? I do deserve her warm fuzzies!" Said The Cyan Pegasus To Herself

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