• Published 30th Jan 2012
  • 5,889 Views, 59 Comments

I can keep you safe, I can keep you happy. - Phxntxm

After a fun day at Twilight's with Applejack, Rainbow learns something has terrible has happened.

  • ...

Things are Changing

Chapter 2

The night started off boring for Rainbow Dash, just as she expected, for the other ponies however it was an outstanding night. They started by just sitting around and talking, of course this meant just Twilight and Applejack talking, while Rainbow just sat around and skulked. After a while, Twilight decided to be a little sympathetic towards her, “I think I've got something that we can all do that you might enjoy too Rainbow, close your eyes girls”

Both ponies did as they were told and felt Twilight's magical aura around them, it took a couple minutes to stop but it eventually did. “Open your eyes now” Rainbow noticed that the voice didn't seem to be coming from another source but...in her head, she could hear Twilight in her mind instead through her ears. She didn't pay too much attention to it however, because as she opened her eyes her jaw dropped.

She was in a whole new world it seemed, the library was gone and in front of her was...something. She couldn't explain it if she tried. Twilight's voice came through her head, “it's called a race car, basically the circular thing in front of you is a steering wheel, turning it counter-clockwise will cause you to go left, clockwise will make you right. There are two pedals at your hooves, the one on the right will make you speed up and the left will make you slow down. The path in front of you girls is a 'road' just follow it.”

“How in tarnation did we git in here?!” So it wasn't only Rainbow who was completely at a loss as to what was going on.

“This is a video game, it's basically a way to put yourself into another ponies point of view, and do things that you couldn't do in your own life. This a racing game, the idea behind it is that for anypony that's not a Pegasus, you can still race at speeds that would be ridiculous without any extra help. It's a competition, I know both of you girls like competitions, that's why I chose this one. The video game is actually something I came up on my own, I wanted to actually SEE things in another's point of view. With Celestia's help we-”

“Yeah yeah, that's impressive Twi, but if this is a competition then I'm going to win. What's the point of this game anyway?” Rainbow was eager to get started, so that she could win.

“Inconsiderate as usual” Twilight muttered, “the point is to just follow the track, it's pretty simple.”

Rainbow looked around the “race car” there seemed to be A LOT more than just the wheel and the pedals, but she had never seen anything of the sort. It seemed to be simple enough though, all she needed was to steer and be able to go right? Who even needs the pedal on the left, you can't win a race if you slow done. Her attention went to the steering wheel, it took a little bit of ingenuity but she realized she could put a hoof in between the holes in the wheel and steer.

“Is everypony ready?”

“Yer darn tootin'!”

After looking around a little more, she could see Twilight and her race car through the window on her left, and likewise with Applejack on her right. Looking forward she could see a red light above her. She leaned forward and grinned. “Lets do this”

“Alright, when the light turns green, that's when you go, and please don't hit anypony, either of you two, good luck girls.”

“Yer gonna need it Rainbow.”

To her right Applejack winked at her and tipped her Stetson before concentrating on the light in front of her. Rainbow did the same and placed a hind hoof on the pedal to her right. Racing was what she could do, she was the fastest flier in all of Equestria, that HAD to be an advantage somehow. There was no way she was going to lose. She focused intently on the light in front of her and breathed a deep breath. Everything went quiet and she knew it was about to start, adrenaline rushed through her and she could feel her heart beat. The wait for the start of the race was always such an intense feeling.

As soon as that light turned green she slammed her hoof down on the pedal, and she was likewise slammed into the seat she was sitting in. The car couldn't go as fast as she could of course, but it was a different type of feeling than flying was...not as good a feeling, but still excellent. As they pulled into the first turn she noticed both Applejack and Twilight pull to the inside of the turn and pull ahead of her. She followed suit and pulled closer to the inside of the curve. Twilight pulled way ahead of the other two, completely surprising both of the other two ponies.

“How are YOU winning Twi?!” Rainbow's eyes had gone completely wide in surprise.

“Was that supposed to not be offensive Rainbow? I've had a lot of practice, when you take a turn as tight as you can, it cuts the distance you have to travel down substantially.”

Now Rainbow was in last...this did NOT sit well with her, and she smugly told herself that she could easily catch up...she WAS Rainbow Dash after all.

“We're going to do fifty laps, the green light will turn yellow as you finish your forty-ninth lap, telling you you have one left to catch up, or keep your lead, or whatever else. It will turn red again as you cross after that.”

As she finished saying this they were already finishing the second turn and Rainbow could see the light ahead of her. She panicked as she realized that the laps went by a lot faster than she thought it would. She pushed the pedal even further down, but she knew she had to keep control so she didn't crash (she'd already done enough of that while flying) so couldn't press it too far.

The first turn had done it's damage and Rainbow was behind by quite a bit, all she could do is try to race as best as she could, even though a race car was a lot harder to control than she herself was. She took each turn as precisely as she possibly could, cutting inside on the turns, inches away from the grass in the middle that she could tell you weren't allowed to touch. Then sliding outside when she wasn't on a turn accelerating as much as she could before slowing down a little to hit the turns safely again. It was repetitive and exhilarating at the same time, a feeling she was used to already, having been in many races before.

At about the tenth lap she was finally able get on the inside of Applejack before they hit the turn, cutting her off from where she would like to have been, and overtaking her. “Now I'm coming after you Twi” She smirked and knew she had this, Twilight might have had practice at the game, but Rainbow had done this a lot more than she had. After a couple more laps she was directly on Twilight's tail. The race was hers. A smile crept its way onto her lips.

She passed Twilight at the back half of the thirty-seventh lap and won just like she knew she would. The odd cringe had completely left her mind as she waited for the race to be over so she could rub it her win in her friends' faces.

The world paused for a second and went black, and in another second they were back in the library. The flash of the images made Rainbow dizzy and she lay down, she saw the other ponies doing the same as her. Twilight and Applejack were laughing and talking about the race.

“Ah'm surprised you did so well Twilight, no offense or nothin', but bein' a bookworm and all doesn't really seem like ya would know how to race!”

“It's fine Applejack, I normally wouldn't be good at something like that and I know it, but like I said, I've had a lot of practice on the game. The project that allowed this game to exist is quite astounding though! Celestia and I made a virtual world with multiple zones allowing us to-” she stopped as she saw the blank stares coming from her two friends and she laughed. “Never mind, it is intriguing though! Trust me!”

All three of the ponies were exhausted after the race, even though they just pressed pedals and turned a wheel, it still managed to take a lot out of them. They sat around and talked for a while again, and with Rainbow in a much better mood after that race, it was a lot more light-hearted, and she was actually included. After an hour or so the topic got to what any group of fillies will end up talking about...colts. Or it was for Twilight, much to Rainbow's surprise however, she found out Applejack was into fillies!

“You're gay!?” Rainbow's jaw dropped.

“Rainbow...first of all saying it like that can offend some ponies. And second of course she is, everypony else knows that, how do you not? She never tried to keep it a secret.”

Applejack shook her head and smiled, “Ya never spend time with any of us Rainbow, yer always either practicin' your tricks, or workin' on tha weather. If yer ever with us it's for a little bit, and ya end up gettin' bored and leavin'. That's probably why ya didn't know.”

“I guess, sorry if I insulted you, I was just a little surprised is all.”

“That's fine sugarcube, if ah didn't know any better I coulda seen that outburst as excitement.” Applejack said slyly with a wink and a chuckle.

Rainbow looked genuinely disgusted “What? Eww no!!” The hurt was evident on Applejack's face, and it took a moment for Rainbow what she just said and she cringed. “Shit! AJ that's not what I meant I swear! I just...am taken aback by all this...I've never met someone that's...into fillies before, it's not something I've put much thought into. You're still my best friend, I'm the Element of Loyalty AJ, I promise that won't ever happen again.” She looked at Applejack despairingly, hoping to see forgiveness in her friend.

Twilight looked sympathetically at Rainbow, she knew that Rainbow didn't mean what she said. “Applejack she's telling the truth, I know she is.”

Applejack just lay her head on her hooves and looked at Rainbow sadly. “Ah know she didn't mean it, that don't mean it didn't hurt.”

Rainbow looked even more sad than Applejack did. “AJ...I'm sorry...I've just ruined the night, I'm sorry Twilight” She looked at her lavender friend nearly crying, “I'm sorry...I think I'll just go home now before I make it worse.” She floated slowly to the door and left quietly. She started to fly home as she realized what a fool she just made of herself. “I can't believe I just did that, what is wrong with me? I don't have a problem with somepony who is into fillies, why did I freak out like that?” She stopped abruptly in mid-air.

“WHERE THE HAY DID MY HOME GO?!” The cloud her home used to be on was no longer there! There was just...air. She heard a cough behind her and she whirled around. “DERPY! What happened to my home!?”

“I uh...I kind of...I broke the cloud it was on...”

Rainbow felt more anger than she had ever felt before bubble in her very core and she started to shake uncontrollably. “You...did....what?”

“I didn't mean to I swear! I was going after this cloud here! I kind of...missed...I'm sorry.”

“So what exactly happened to my home then?” She knew the answer obviously, but she just couldn't believe it. This couldn't be happening, there was no way, on top of ruining her friends' night THIS happened to her?!

Derpy pointed down, Rainbow followed where she pointed and saw the ground...nothing special about it. “It broke on the ground and it disappeared...clouds are really sensitive Rainbow Dash.”

All the anger Rainbow had previously felt left, she felt like her whole body had just deflated and all feeling left her. She went completely numb as the realization hit her: her whole life had just changed in an instant, she was homeless.