The Twidash Playlist

by ssjgokillo

First published

A interconnected story about Rainbow Dash and Twilight's blossoming relationship, where each chapter is based off of a song.

Rainbow Dash has developed a crush on Twilight. Now she just needs to find a way to express herself to her heart's desire, while fighting against her own past, meddling friends, and a pony who only recently learned what friendship was.

So it might be a bit harder than she thought.

Each chapter of this story is based off a song. This is not a "song fic", I'm basically just using the songs as a prompt for the story.

Y'know, kinda like that Timaeus guy did, but not as good. Honestly, you should probably just click that link right up there and read his story. Now. READ IT!

Cover art modified from a vector by twidash-hiishirikuu.

Chapter 1

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Rainbow Dash was upset. Well, maybe not upset. Annoyed? Peevish? She wasn’t sure, all she knew was that something was bothering her. And the worst thing was she couldn’t figure out what exactly it was that was bothering her! Everything just seemed so boring lately. Even flying, her favorite thing in the world, seemed to lack that spark that used to make it so exciting. She just couldn’t get into it...

Her day-to-day activities weren’t the cause. She would wake up every day and quickly get her weather duties done, before doing her morning flight practice. Then she’d find some place to take a nap, resting until sometime in the afternoon, unless one of her friends found her first. Then the rest of the day would be spent hanging out with Applejack, or more recently Pinkie Pie, after discovering Pinkie’s penchant for pranks.

The only thing that had changed for Rainbow Dash was the events that seemed to surround her newest friend, Twilight Sparkle. After Twilight had moved to Ponyville, it seemed like Rainbow was always finding herself dragged into some new adventure. Fighting over tickets to the Grand Galloping Gala, getting a dragon to find someplace else to take a nap, oh, and of course that one time they totally beat Nightmare Moon and stopped Equestria from being plunged into eternal darkness.

But everything that happened always turned out to be cool! So obviously it couldn’t be Twilight’s fault. Not that Rainbow would ever blame her newest friend even if their misadventures had been the cause of her restlessness. Twilight may have been a little overbearing at times, but she was still pretty cool, in a nerdy sort of way.

Still, that left Rainbow Dash with the annoying problem of not knowing what exactly was bothering her. Worst of all, the more she thought about it, the more she became annoyed. If there was no reason for her to feel down, then why the hay did she still feel down?

Maybe it was time to get a second opinion. While Rainbow Dash did not like showing weakness to anypony, she really wanted to get over this. Besides, there was one pony Rainbow Dash knew she could always go to without having to fear being judged.

Unless she was mean to an animal. Then even Fluttershy’s patience might run out.

It was a better option than just sitting there moping at least. Worst case scenario, she spends some time chatting with her oldest friend. Not really a way to lose in that situation.

With that thought in mind Rainbow Dash spread her wings and leapt off the cloud she’d been resting on. She decided to just lock her wings, and glide her way to Fluttershy’s place. For once she wasn’t in a hurry, and it was a little soothing to just relax in the air, compared to her normal high speed aerobatics.

Her flight ended all too soon for her tastes. She soon found herself landing just before the bridge that lead to Fluttershy’s cottage. She could see various critters running this way and that all around the cottage.

She trotted up to the door, and knocked just loud enough to be heard, but not with enough force to scare the shy mare into hiding for five minutes. It was a knock she had perfected after her many years of associating with Fluttershy.

When the door opened, Rainbow Dash was surprised to see Rarity. The white unicorn smiled pleasantly at Rainbow Dash.

“Oh! Rainbow Dash, do come in!” She said, stepping to the side.

Rainbow Dash always expected the inside of Fluttershy’s house to smell like a kennel. She was always pleasantly surprised to find that wasn’t the case. It seemed that Fluttershy and the animals had an understanding, and they did their business elsewhere. The smell of animals was still in the air, but it was not the overpowering smell one would expect.

Fluttershy walked out of her kitchen, balancing a tray with teacups and assorted snacks on one of her wings. “Rainbow! Oh no! I didn’t know you were coming over, I haven’t made enough snacks and I don’t have a teacup for you. I’m sorry, I’ll go make some more right away!”

Rainbow Dash shook her head, knowing how frazzled Fluttershy could get, even amongst her closest friends. “Nah, it’s cool Fluttershy, I didn’t know I was interrupting anything. I can just come back another time.”

“Well that simply won’t do, darling. You came all this way after all, you should join us for some afternoon tea.” Rarity said. She used her magic to levitate the tray off of Fluttershy’s wing, setting it on the table. She carefully poured two cups of tea, while Fluttershy hurried back into the kitchen to get a cup for her new guest.

“Eh, I guess I could. I was coming over to talk to Fluttershy anyways.” Rainbow Dash took a seat on one of the chairs near the table. Tea wasn’t really her thing, despite how much Rarity raved about it. She prefered fruit juice, or cider if it was available, which it normally wasn’t, sadly.

Fluttershy quickly returned with another cup, which Rarity then filled with tea. With the tea taken care of, the two mares joined Rainbow Dash at the table.

“So what brings you by, Rainbow? I mean, not that I’m not happy that you’ve come to visit or anything.” That was classic Fluttershy, always quick to worry over how she may have offended somepony.

Rainbow Dash hesitated for a moment. While she was comfortable talking about this to Fluttershy, Rarity was a whole different story. Still, Rarity was her friend, and having somepony who might have a different perspective might help.

“Well, I kinda have a problem. Nothing major, just something that’s been bugging me lately.

The three mares sat silently, Fluttershy and Rarity sipping at their tea while they waited for Rainbow Dash to continue. Rainbow for her part simply stared down into the brown liquid in her cup. It didn’t smell too bad, by why did ponies actually drink this stuff? It was like drinking watery grass.

“So what exactly seems to be the problem, Rainbow Dash?”

Rainbow Dash grimaced. It figured that Rarity would cut right to the chase. Part of the reason Rainbow Dash had come to Fluttershy was that the shy pegasus would never be as blunt, giving Rainbow enough time to ease herself into the topic. With Rarity though, there was no chance of that.

“I dunno,” Rainbow Dash’s voice sounded alien to her own ears, is that what being nervous sounded like? “I guess I’ve just been in some kinda funk lately.”

“Oh my!” Fluttershy immediately flew to her friend’s side, placing a hoof to her forehead to while looking her over. “Are you sick? You don’t seem to have a fever.”

Rainbow pushed Fluttershy’s hoof away, giving her an annoyed look. “Nah, I feel fine, I just… I dunno! That’s what’s so annoying!” Rainbow Dash began pacing back and forth, filled with a nervous energy. “It just seems like nothing is as cool anymore. Like... like there’s an overcast sky even on a sunny day! Like, I can’t even enjoy flying that much anymore, and I don’t know why!”

“Oh my! This sounds serious.” Fluttershy looked worried. Of course, hearing Rainbow Dash say she wasn’t enjoy flying would be like Fluttershy saying she didn’t like being surrounded by cute critters.

“Well, why don’t you tell us a bit more? Perhaps when you first started feeling this way?”

Rarity’s question made sense. Rainbow Dash tried to think, looking back on when exactly she had started to feel down for no apparent reason. “I guess, sometime after we got that dragon to find a different place to take a nap.”

Rarity tapped her muzzle in thought. “Hmmm, do you perhaps feel guilty for making the dragon move?”

“Nah. I mean, I get the need for a good nap, but that guy needed to find somewhere else to sleep. Not like it was that big of a deal.”

“I see. Well, have you done anything recently that hasn’t made you feel ‘down in the dumps’, as it were?”

“Just whenever we’re doing whatever crazy thing happens. Like when that Trixie chick came to town. I mean, did you see the way Twilight handled that Ursa Minor? There’s no way that could’ve been anything less than awesome! Or when Twi was getting us to realize Zecora wasn’t an evil enchantress? I mean, we were all too scared to even talk to her, but Twi came right out and told us we were being silly, and she was right!”

Rarity and Fluttershy exchanged a look, the meaning of which was completely lost on Rainbow Dash. “Why yes, Twilight has certainly caused a buzz since she came to Ponyville.”

“Right! I mean, I always thought Ponyville was kinda boring after I moved here, but it seems like there’s always something interesting happen since she moved here.” Rainbow Dash smiled fondly at the memories. Even if it hadn’t been that long, it felt like there was always something new and exciting to do since Twilight had come to town.

“Let me just make sure that I’m understanding the situation correctly. You feel like things you typically enjoy aren’t as enjoyable. You are in ‘a funk’, as you say, and the only time you don’t feel this way is whenever one of we’re joining Twilight on some misadventure?”

“Uh, yeah. That sounds about right.”

Rarity smiled. “Well then darling, I believe the answer is obvious: You have developed a crush on Twilight Sparkle.”

There were many ways Rainbow Dash could have handled such news. A quick declaration, a blushful admittance, or even a cold ‘what the hay have you been putting in your tea?’ stare.

So it made sense that both Rarity and Fluttershy were surprised when, without warning, Rainbow Dash began to laugh. Not just a chuckle or a giggle, but a full-blown ‘clutching your sides’ laugh. Rarity looked at Fluttershy, wondering if her diagnosis had somehow caused their friend to ‘snap’.

“So...hahah… so you think… pffft,” Rainbow shakily stood back on her hooves, still laughing as she tried to speak, “that this….*snort* is all because I have a crush on...Twilight?” It seemed that just saying it herself was too much, as Rainbow collapsed back into a fit of laughter.

Rarity quirked an eyebrow at the amused pegasus. “I really don’t see what’s so funny about this, Rainbow Dash. You have clearly become enamored with our new friend.”

Rainbow’s laughter slowed to a couple of separate chuckles as she returned Rarity’s questioning gaze. “What the hay does armor have to do with anything?”

“Enamored, Rainbow Dash.” Rarity exaggerated each sound of the word, making sure Rainbow Dash wasn’t able to confuse it. “It means infatuated, captivated, or just plain attracted to.”

The lecture on words she didn’t care about seemed to kill the rest of Rainbow Dash’s laughter. She rolled her eyes as she stood back up. “That’s exactly what’s so funny! You think that I’ve been feeling down lately because I have a ‘crush’ on Twilight!”

“And why exactly is that funny?”

Rainbow Dash shook her head. “Cause that’s not how I work. Trust me, I’ve tried the whole dating scene, but being in a relationship just slows me down. No mare, or stallion, is worth the headache.” Rainbow Dash looked over to Fluttershy, who seemed to be trying to make herself as unnoticeable as possible. She knew, of course. Fluttershy had seen Rainbow Dash’s disastrous attempts at relationships back when they were both living in Cloudsdale, but that was ancient history. Rainbow Dash flew solo now.

“Really darling? Who do you think you’re kidding? You’re showing all the signs of a mare pining for the attentions of her beloved.”

Rainbow shook her head. “Oh come on! Seriously, I've known Twilight for like a month! How could I even have a crush on her?”

“The heart wants what the heart wants, Rainbow Dash. Perhaps there is simply something special about Twilight? Something that draws you to her?”
“Ugh, this is stupid! There’s no way that I have a crush on Twilight!”

“I beg to differ, Rainbow Dash. And I’m sure if you put some thought into it, you’d see that it makes sense. You said yourself that it started shortly after the incident with that beastly dragon. You can’t seem to enjoy the things you normally like to do, and you feel like there’s something missing. That something is Twilight.”

Annoyance began to creep into Rainbow Dash’s features. It seemed the fashionista just did not get it. “Rarity! I’m not in love anypony.” Rainbow’s tone came out harsher than she meant it to, but she really wanted to put this ridiculous issue to rest.

It seemed like she may have been a bit too harsh however. Fluttershy had ducked behind the couch, peeking over the edge. Rarity had flinched at Rainbow’s declaration, but still seemed ready to retort.

So it was surprising to both Rainbow Dash and Fluttershy, when Rarity simply sighed, and nodded her head. “Of course, I apologize for making any assumptions, Rainbow Dash.”

Glad that topic was dealt with, Rainbow Dash relaxed. She hadn’t realized how tense she had been during that conversation until her body sagged under the relief of it being over. “S’cool, Rarity.”

“I mean whatever was I thinking? How could a mare like Twilight ever attract your attention?”

That threw Rainbow Dash for a loop. She looked at Rarity, who seemed almost disappointed with herself. “Uh, come again?”

“Well I mean, isn’t it obvious darling? You are, what’s the term… ah! You are out of her league. Why, the very thought that a plain and boring mare like Twilight could ever gain your affection! It’s almost laughable!”

“Err… that’s not really what I meant when I was-”

“No, Rainbow Dash, you are absolutely right! I mean, what exactly does Twilight Sparkle have to offer? Her manestyle is completely unflattering. Her body isn’t much to look at honestly, very plain. And her attitude? I mean, all she does is talk about her studies or how she’s running some errand for the Princess!” Rarity shook her head, seemingly annoyed with the pony she was describing.

Rainbow was quick to jump to her friend’s defense. “Hey! That’s not fair. Twilight looks amazing, and she has a body a ton of mares would kill for! And she doesn’t even have to try, it’s all natural for her. And who cares if she likes to talk about her studies, that’s like me talking about the Wonderbolts or you talking about fashion!”

“Oh Rainbow, you are being far too kind. Besides, what could a mare like her possibly offer as a special somepony? She would only ever drag whoever she was with down, with her constant need for checklists and schedules. I can’t imagine it would be any fun to date her.”

“Twilight would make a great special somepony! Anypony would be lucky to date her! She’s cute, she’s a hard worker, she's like the smartest pony ever! And she’s always looking out for ponies, even if she doesn't know them. And have you ever seen the way her eyes sparkle whenever she gets excited about something? Or that cute little way her breath catches whenever she find a book she hasn't read before? Or…”

Rainbow Dash found the words dying on her lips, as she saw the grin Rarity was giving her. She recognized that grin, she’d seen it on Applejack’s face anytime the mare had won at whatever contest they had come up with.

“My apologies, Rainbow Dash. I didn't realize that you had paid that much attention to Ponyville’s newest librarian. I must say, it almost sounds like you-”

“That’s enough, Rarity.”

Both mares turned to see Fluttershy, who had apparently given up hiding behind the couch, giving Rarity a stern glare. It wasn’t the full “stare” that Fluttershy was rumored to have, but the change in the normally nervous pegasus’ attitude was enough to silence both Rarity and Rainbow Dash.

“I know that you were only trying to help Rainbow Dash, but that was a very mean thing you did, Rarity.”

Rarity sunk in on herself, and had the good grace to look ashamed. “I-I’m very sorry Fluttershy. I was simply trying to help Rainbow Dash see-”

“Rainbow Dash is a big pony, she doesn’t need one of her friends to browbeat her into something like this. Besides, those were some very mean things you said about Twilight.” Rainbow Dash was very glad at that moment not to be on the receiving end of the disappointed look Fluttershy currently had direct at Rarity, she wasn’t sure her heart could take it.

“I… You’re quite right, Fluttershy. I didn’t mean any of what I said, but it still was horrible of me to say those things, or to try and trick Rainbow Dash like that.”

Fluttershy nodded, and Rarity gave a relieved sigh when Fluttershy turned her attention from her. Now, the look was leveled at Rainbow Dash, who could feel a cold sweat breaking out from being scrutinized by her longtime friend.

“And Rainbow Dash, you need to stop being so stubborn. I know your relationships in Cloudsdale didn't end well, but that doesn't mean there isn't a special somepony out there somewhere for you.” Fluttershy’s eyes softened, and she gave her friend a small smile. “You deserve to have somepony who makes you happy.”

Rainbow Dash just nodded dumbly, trying very hard not to think about the ponies she had dated in Cloudsdale. She had always been devoted to whoever she was dating, but it seemed they could never offer the same in return. Each disastrous breakup had shattered the pegasus’ heart, until she had sworn that the whole thing just wasn’t worth the trouble.

But maybe Fluttershy was right.

“Now, I think we should probably stop talking about this, and be nice and civil to each other.” Then, almost as if a Fluttershy had used up her daily supply of assertiveness, she shrunk back in on herself, hiding behind the long pink locks of her mane. “Um, that is, if that’s okay with the two of you.”

Rarity nodded. “I think that would be for the best. And Rainbow Dash, I’m sorry. I should not have acted so unladylike.”

“Nah, you were just trying to help, I get it.” Rainbow Dash’s voice sounded hollow, even to her own ears. “Um, I think I’m gonna take off now. I have a lot to think about.”

“Of course, darling. And if you need anypony to talk to… well, I promise I’ll be much better behaved next time.”

Rainbow Dash nodded, and quickly made her way out the door. Once outside, she launched herself into the sky, hoping that a brisk flight would help clear her mind. Yet her thoughts instantly went back to her conversation with Rarity. While she could argue that she had defended Twilight simply because they were friends, that didn't explain some of the things she had said. Like the thing about Twilight’s eyes, she wouldn't have said anything like that about Applejack.

So she had to ask herself, did she have a crush on Twilight?

She felt torn. Her mind was screaming at her to come to her senses, that she knew where this would lead, that she’d just be hurt again. The dull ache that she still felt when she thought of her past relationships was all the evidence that was needed.

But now that she realized it, thinking about Twilight seemed to make that ache go away. It was like having the sun poke through the clouds on a rainy day. Was it worth it to take a chance again? Would Twilight even be interested in a mare like her?

She settled down on a cloud, noticing that while she had been thinking, she had automatically flown just outside Twilight’s library.

A glimpse of purple through the window made Rainbow Dash’s breath catch. Her heart was thundering in her chest like a stampede of cows.

And strangely enough, she smiled. She may not be sure yet, but it wasn’t like she had to decide right at that moment. She didn’t have to say it out loud, but in her heart she knew.

She was in love with Twilight Sparkle.

Chapter 2

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Rainbow Dash had a problem. She liked Twilight Sparkle, in a ‘more-than-a-friend’ kind of way. Rarity had proved that point quite well the other day, but now Rainbow Dash had no idea how to proceed. Twilight Sparkle was unlike any pony she had ever dated before. The bookish mare had only recently realized the importance of friendship, so it was highly doubtful that she had ever been in a relationship before.

At first Rainbow Dash had considered the direct approach. Fly over to Golden Oaks Library, tell Twilight that she thought she was hot, give her a kiss, then ask her on a date. Unfortunately, her mind immediately chimed in with possible reactions to such an act. Like Twilight looking terrified, before teleporting all the way to Canterlot and never coming back to Ponyville, or Twilight looking at her in disgust while saying she didn’t like mares that way, or Twilight becoming so frazzled that she became Nightmare Twilight, and shrouded the land in eternal dusk, turning her friends into her loyal servants.

Rainbow Dash had blushed at the implications of the last thought.

So, the outright approach was out, but where did that leave her? She highly doubted Twilight would pick up on subtle hints. And while Rainbow Dash knew that she was awesome, she also knew that she stunk at flirting. Like, cheesy pick up lines bad. Things that worked far better in a comedy routine.

She couldn’t come right out and say it, but she doubted that Twilight would ever notice the little things, so what could she do?

The answer was obvious, she’d just have to be awesome. Well, she was always awesome. She’d just have to show Twilight how awesome she was!

First though, she’d need an excuse to get Twilight out of the library. Something that would have the unicorn focused on her, fully exposed to Rainbow Dash’s aura of awesome.

Luckily, she’d find just such an excuse while hanging out with Applejack. It all came to her in a flash, after losing a game of horseshoes. She could prove she was the best athlete to both Applejack and Twilight, clearing two clouds with one kick!

“I challenge you to an Iron Pony competition, a series of athletic contests to decide who’s the best, once and for all.”

Applejack nodded. “Ya know what, Rainbow? You’re on!”

It was perfect. She couldn’t have asked for a better way to show off in front of Twilight. Suggesting that they would need somepony to judge the competition had been sheer brilliance, and Applejack had actually suggested Twilight be the judge, Rainbow didn’t even have to bring it up.

Thing had gone even better than she had expected. Rainbow Dash had won most of the events, proving once and for all she was the best athlete, with Twilight there to witness the whole thing! Rainbow Dash had been so pumped from winning the contest, that she she had almost asked Twilight out right then and there.

Until Applejack had to open her big mouth. Accusing her of cheating, of all things! It wasn’t Rainbow Dash’s fault she had been born a pegasus, of course she was going to use her wings!

So Applejack had challenged her to a race during the Running of the Leaves. There was no way Rainbow Dash was going to decline, especially since it was another opportunity to impress Twilight.

She was able to imagine it. She’d win the race way ahead of the other runners, and all the ponies would be cheering her name. But she wouldn’t be paying attention to that (at least, not too much). No, her focus would be on Twilight, who would come running up to her, congratulating her on such an amazing race. Then, Twilight would act all shy, saying that she thought the winner deserved a special prize. Of course, Rainbow Dash would play it cool, saying she didn’t need anything. But Twilight would insist, and then ask Rainbow Dash to close her eyes. Once Twilight’s lips met her’s, Rainbow Dash would pull her into an embrace, deepening the kiss and making Twilight yelp in surprise. Then Twilight would melt into the kiss, and once they were finished, would definitely ask Rainbow Dash to be her marefriend.

At least, that’s how things were supposed to go.

Instead, Twilight had actually joined the race as well! Not only that, but she had managed to place 5th, while Rainbow Dash had tied with Applejack for dead last. Even worse, she’d had to go run the course again with Applejack to help shake off the leaves that had been missed due to their hijinks. She hadn’t even been able to properly congratulate Twilight on her performance.

Her plan had failed, but she wasn’t about to give up! She’d prove herself to Twilight, one way or another.

Dresses were definitely not her thing. Clothes only slowed her down when she was trying to fly. Still, even with her limited interactions with clothes, she could see that Rarity was just about the best dress designer in all of Equestria. So she didn’t mind when Rarity offered to make her a dress, or when she said that she’d have to participate in some silly fashion show.

The only problem was the dress itself.

“Aren’t you going to tell me to change something too?” Rarity asked, causing Rainbow Dash to snap out of her thoughts.

Rarity wasn’t looking so great. The unicorn had obviously been quite busy designing and then redesigning all her friend’s dresses, but to Rainbow Dash she looked like she might collapse at any moment. Still...

“Nah, I just want my dress to be cool.”

“Do you not like the color?”

“The color’s fine, just make it look cooler.”

“Do you not like the shape?”

“The shape’s fine, just make the whole thing… you know, cooler!”

Seeing that Rarity still seemed a little lost, Rainbow Dash decided to elaborate. “You know, something so cool that a certain pony would totally be amazed when she saw it? And would totally be like ‘Wow, Rainbow Dash, you’re hot! You should totally be my date to the Grand Galloping Gala!’”

Rarity blinked, then smirked, looking slightly more awake. “Ah, now it makes sense. I had thought it rather odd that you’d be so willing to participate in the design process, let alone in the fashion show itself. Hoping to impress a certain somepony?”

Rainbow Dash felt her face heat up, but no there was no sense denying it to Rarity of all ponies. “Yeah. I figured I’d play along, and maybe let Twilight see me in something totally awesome! I’m willing to get all dressed up and strut around if it’ll make her happy.”

“I see, we shall have to work doubly hard to ensure your dress is perfect then. Now, how can we make this dress capture Twilight’s attention?”

Rainbow Dash stared at the fabric on the ponyquin. It still didn’t seem right, like there was something just a little…

“It needs to be about twenty percent cooler.”

Rarity simply groaned in response.

So the dressed had been a flop. Okay, flop was putting it too kindly. They had been a disaster. Not only had they all looked ridiculous, but Twilight hadn’t spared her so much as a second glance, even when she was wearing Rarity’s (original, and much improved) design. Apparently Twilight cared about clothing as little as Rainbow Dash did.

That was okay, though. She had a new plan: The Best Young Flyer Competition! This was it! Her chance to shine, show that she was the best. She’d win first place, which would obviously impress Twilight enough that the unicorn would have no choice but to ask her out!

Then, Twilight had to go and be even more amazing. If Rainbow Dash hadn’t already been in love with her, then Twilight making sure all her friends could be there to cheer her on might have done it. As it was, Rainbow Dash felt like she might just actually be able to cause a sonic rainboom out of pure happiness.

Right before the competition, her nerves began to get the best of her. Twilight was there, at the competition! She’d be watching her, watching her try to do a stunt she’d only ever pulled off once! A stunt that, despite years of training, she had never been able to recreate. What if she wasn’t able to do it? What if, she crashed and burned in front of everypony, with Twilight there to see?

Twilight would never go out with a loser like that! Not only did Rainbow Dash see her dreams of winning the competition start to fade, but also any chance she might have had at a relationship with Twilight.

Yet, as much as she wished otherwise, she couldn’t just quit. That wasn’t who she was. She’d go out there, and she’d give it her best shot. Because if she didn’t try at all, then she’d already failed, and Rainbow Dash was not cool with failing.

So, at the very last opportunity, she had flown. It wasn’t her best work by any stretch, she’d messed up on two parts of her act.

But then Rarity had fallen, her magical wings had disappeared somehow, and Rainbow Dash stopped thinking. There was no contest, there was no crush, there was only a friend who needed her.

And she’d done it, her second sonic rainboom, just in time to save her friend, and the Wonderbolts!

Could you say Best Day Ever?

She certainly had, until she realized that, in the rush of having won the competition and getting to spend time with her idols, she had totally forgotten about Twilight.

It would have been the perfect opportunity! She had been a hero! She’d saved four ponies from falling to their deaths while pulling off the most legendary aerial stunt known to pegasi! If she’d even glanced at Twilight at after that, the unicorn probably would have fainted from pure desire!

Well, maybe Rainbow Dash hadn’t been able to get a congratulatory kiss from Twilight, but she had still won the contest, and Twilight had seen her pull off a sonic rainboom! There was no way Twilight wouldn’t be interested in her now!

It turned out that Rainbow Dash was right. The day after the Best Young Flyer Competition, Twilight had found her and asked her a question.

Unfortunately it wasn't the question Rainbow Dash had been hoping for.

“You want to what now?” Rainbow Dash was not entirely sure she had heard correctly. There was no way Twilight had just walked up to her and asked…

“I’d like to study you! Well, your ability to do the sonic rainboom, I mean.” Twilight was smiling, positively giddy at the prospect of something new to research. Which had the side-effect of making Rainbow Dash’s brain turn to mush. “It’s an amazing technique, but there’s so little known about it. So I wanted to record as much as I could about it, maybe even publish the findings in a book for future ponies to read!” Twilight made that happy little squee sound that she did whenever she was excited, and clapped her front hooves together. At that point, Twilight could have asked Rainbow Dash to go back and start flight school over from the beginning, and she’d have done it.

“Uh, sure, I guess.” Rainbow Dash said, though her mind was still trying to catch up, having been stopped completely at Twilight’s adorable actions.

“Are you sure? I mean, it’ll probably mean weeks worth of testing, you’d have to perform under various circumstances while we recorded the data. I wouldn’t want you to get bored.”

The word test immediately got Rainbow Dash’s attention, and she realized what she had just agreed to. Honestly, even with the potential to understand the sonic rainboom better, the whole thing sounded boring.

“Sure! I mean, it’s important for that kind of junk to be around for the future, right?” In her mind she groaned, but there was no way she could pass up the opportunity to spend time with Twilight.

Apparently that was the right answer. Twilight gasped in happiness, and Rainbow Dash found her mind come crashing to a halt once again as Twilight wrapped her in a hug.

“Ohhhh! Thank you so much, Rainbow Dash! This is so exciting, first we’ll have to…”

Rainbow Dash wasn’t paying attention. She could still feel the warmth of Twilight’s forelegs wrapped around her. The warmth seemed to flow through her whole body, like she was wrapped up in the softest blanket in the world.

So what if it meant spending hours doing some boring sciencey stuff? If it meant getting to spend time with Twilight, or the possibility of another one of those hugs, then Rainbow Dash would do just about anything.

Chapter 3

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Pinkie Pie was known for many things around Ponyville. Her boundless energy, which was exceeded only by her endless optimism. Her parties, her songs, her “Pinkie Sense”, and her quirky nature were all things that everypony just accepted as Pinkie Pie.

What many ponies did not recognize about Pinkie Pie, was her attention to the little things. She always paid attention to pony’s favorite foods, to make sure that she’d be able to prepare them at a party. She could glean many details from the most casual conversations, to see if there was anypony who needed cheering up, or if there was a party she should be planning.

So of course, she realized there was something going on with her friend, Rainbow Dash. Aside from the fact that Rainbow didn’t seem to have as much time to go pranking anymore, she also seemed distracted by something. There was obviously something on her mind, but Rainbow Dash wasn’t talking.

Well, there was no way Pinkemena Diane Pie would just let one of her bestest friends possibly be worried over something without helping! She had to figure out what was bugging her pranking amigo. Her prankmigo, as it were.

First, she’d have to figure out what was bugging Rainbow Dash. Which meant gathering information (which she had recently picked up as a trained skill!), and she knew the best place in all of Ponyville to get information.

“So, Pinkie Pie, whatever brings you here today?” Rarity sipped at her cup of tea, giving a little ‘hmmm’ of contentment at the flavor. Pinkie personally never understood tea. It was like grass flavored water. Unless it was sweet tea, with lots and lots of sugar! Then it was super yummy.

She wasn’t here to debate the tastiness of tea however! She needed answers, and if there was anypony who knew about the going-ons of Ponyville, it would be Rarity.

“Alright, Rarity, I’ve got some questions for you.” While she sounded super serious, inside Pinkie was laughing. She loved playing the bad cop.

Rarity seemed completely unphased by Pinkie’s sudden change in demeanor, which was kind of a downer for Pinkie Pie. After all, how was she supposed to lean on somepony for information if they weren’t intimidated?

“Of course, Pinkie, what would you like to know?”

“What’s your favorite color?” Pinkie asked, staring at Rarity to pick up on any hints that she may be less than truthful.

Rarity seemed a little confused at the question, exactly as Pinkie had planned. “Hmmm… I’d say royal blue, though I have found myself drawn to the color orange as of late.”

“How’s business been?”

“Oh, things have been going alright. I have had a few orders here and there, but nothing too major. I’m actually about to start working on my new summer line.”

Pinkie nodded. “I see, I see. Been to the spa lately?”

“Why as a matter of fact, I was there just yesterday with Fluttershy.”

“How’s Sweetie Belle?

“She’s a hooful as always.”

“Any idea why Rainbow Dash has been acting so weird lately?”

“I’d suppose it would be because she’s trying to deal with her crush on Twilight.”

“Rainbow Dash has a crush on Twilight?!”

Rarity immediately looked ashamed. She quickly looked around, as though somepony may have suck into the botique just to eavesdrop on that particular piece of information. Satisfied that nopony else was there, she turned back to Pinkie Pie. “Yes, but I’m afraid I should not have said that, it’s a bit of a secret you see.”

“No problemo! Nopony will hear it from me! Cross my heart, hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my eye!”

Rarity smiled at that. “Thank you, Pinkie Pie.”

This was so exciting! She had expected to find out that Rainbow Dash had been replaced by some kind of shape shifting pony eater, and was currently held in a cocoon somewhere while fake Dashie lulled Ponyville into a false sense of security. This was like, a million times more exciting!

“So when is Dashie gonna ask Twilight out?” She needed to know after all, if she was going to throw a RainLight party… or maybe a TwiDash party? Or a RainbowTwilightDashieSparklepalooza?!

“I’m not sure. Rainbow Dash was quite opposed to the idea of having a crush at first, and I’m afraid Twilight is probably quite oblivious to Rainbow Dash’s attentions.”

“Awwww, that’s no fun!” Pinkie whined, “Rainbow Dash just needs to go up to Twilight and give her a big ol’ smooch! Then they can date each other and get married and do all the awesome stuff you do with a special somepony!”

“Pinkie Pie! One does not simply walk up to their crush and ‘give them a big ol’ smooch’! Even somepony as brash as Rainbow Dash would know better.”

Pinkie nodded. Rarity was right about that, there was no way Dashie was just gonna smooch Twilight...without some help! Not that Pinkie was going to smooch Twilight, but she was gonna help Dashie smooch Twilight. Nope, that still didn’t sound right…

She’d just have to help her two friends with their smooching!

Close enough!

With that thought in mind, Pinkie Pie decided to make herself scarce while Rarity was still ranting about propriety and romance. Rarity was silly like that sometimes. She made her way back to her room in Sugarcube Corner, only stopping seven times along the way to greet ponies or grab an emergency cupcake to cheer up a crying filly.

She took out her party planner, and flipped to a clean page. First order of business, she’d have to get Twilight and Rainbow Dash alone together, which was a silly thing to say, because how could somepony possibly be alone if they were together with somepony else? Then, she’d have to make sure the mood was set. Candles were romantic right? Though, probably not birthday candles, unless it was a birthday date!

Pinkie Pie quickly began to scribble ideas down, giggling to herself every now and again as she thought about how happy her friends were going to be, once Pinkie helped them become super special someponies! And with this plan, she couldn’t fail.

Heck, if she didn’t already have her cutie mark, she’d probably get it in matchmaking after this!

Or maybe she could get another cutie mark? Then she’d be a party pony and a matchmaker pony!

She’d think about that later. For now, she had a secret “Get-Dashie-And-Twilight-To-Smooch” plan to put into action.

Everything was perfect! The decorations were up, the invites had been sent out, she’d fished Gummy out of the punch bowl, and the snacks were all set.

Operation Twidash was a go!

The front door opened, and Twilight walked inside before coming to a complete stop. She stared wide-eyed at the transformation the library had undergone.

“Heya, Twilight! You’re a little early, but that’s okay, cause I’ve already finished setting everything up.”

“P-Pinkie Pie? What is all this?”

“It’s a Hearth’s Warming Eve party, silly!” Pinkie bounced her way over to Twilight, placing a festive paper hat on her head.

“I can see that. I guess I’m just a little confused because Hearth’s Warming Eve is still two months away…”

Pinkie smiled, but on the inside, her inner Pinkie was panicking. Of course! She knew Hearth’s Warming Eve wasn’t for another couple months! How could she have overlooked such an important detail? What could she do now? She couldn’t just abandon her plan when she’d come so far? If only her inner Pinkie Pie would help her come up with an idea instead of running around screaming and throwing things out of windows.

“Then it’s a ‘Two-Months-Till-Hearth’s-Warming-Eve-Party’!” Whew, her inner Pinkie Pie came through after all, clever girl.

Twilight looked like she was going to say something, but stopped. She shook her head, and smiled at Pinkie. “Of course, well, it certainly looks fun. So when is everypony else showing up?”

“I was actually just about to go get them! Wanna hold down the party-fort for me while I round everypony up?”

“Sure thing, Pinkie.”

Pinkie Pie just barely suppressed her urge to laugh like the evil mastermind she was. Instead, she made her way outside the library, before quickly running into a bush next to one of the windows. Part 1 had been a smashing success, now she just had to wait for the start of Part 2!

She watched through the window as Twilight walked through the library, examining the decoration and snack table. Pinkie looked down at the watch she wasn’t wearing to check the time. Any minute now…

Twilight turned to look at the door, right on schedule. Pinkie watched the mare trot over to the door, before opening and smiling. She stepped to the side, allowing Rainbow Dash to make her way into the library.

Rainbow Dash gave a confused look around the library, turning to ask Twilight something. Twilight shrugged and gave a reply, before making her way over to the snack table. Pinkie Pie couldn’t help but giggle, as she watched Rainbow Dash stare at Twilight as she perused the snacks.

Now, it was time for part 2 of her devious plan! Pinkie pulled out remote control out of her mane, a simple black box with a large red button in the center. She quickly pressed the button, watching through the window to see her plan come to fruition.

Inside the library, Rainbow Dash and Twilight Sparkle jumped in surprise, as the decorations hanging from the ceiling gave simultaneous pops, revealing the mistletoe that had been hidden inside. The room was covered in the stuff, Pinkie had made sure that there was not one inch of the room that did not have mistletoe hanging above it.

Pinkie Pie cackled, twirling a moustache she’d put on for just such an occasion. There was no escaping her mistletoe onslaught! Now, Rainbow Dash and Twilight would have no choice but to kiss, and then realize their true feeling for each other!

Rainbow Dash looked nervous at the sight of the mistletoe, but said something to Twilight, smiling shyly at her. Twilight…

Twilight’s eyes were watering! She was so happy to finally have a chance to express her feelings for Rainbow Dash that she was about to cry!

Or sneeze. Did Twilight always sneeze when she was happy?

She had to be really happy, because she kept sneezing! And while Pinkie Pie was happy to see Twilight sneezing in happiness, it was kind of keeping the kiss from happening.

It looked like Twilight was trying to say something between her sneezes. Whatever it was, Rainbow Dash apparently understood, because she flew up into the air, snatching the mistletoe from the ceiling. She was a blur of colors as she flew around the library, grabbing all the mistletoe that Pinkie Pie had hung, before flying towards the window Pinkie was looking through.

Pinkie barely had enough time to duck back into the bush before the window opened, and Rainbow Dash tossed all the mistletoe outside.

“There ya go, Twi!” Rainbow Dash said, dusting her hooves off.

Twilight sniffled loudly. “Guh, thanks Rainbow Dash! I guess I need to let Pinkie Pie know that I’m allergic to mistletoe.”

“Yeah, good to know for the future.” Rainbow Dash closed the window, cutting off anything else from being heard.

Once she was sure she was clear, Pinkie Pie crawled out of the bush. As she began walking back to Sugarcube Corner, she pulled the moustache off her snout. She had no right to wear it, her fool proof plan had been ruined! Not only that, but she hadn’t even gotten to monologue about it!

It looked like it was back to the drawing board. She’d get those two to kiss if it was the last thing she did!

The next day, Pinkie began operation “RainbowSparkleKissu 2”. The plan was simple, all she had to do was find a way to get Rainbow Dash and Twilight to go on a romantic boat ride. The two of them, alone, floating along in the middle of Ponyville Lake, wouldn’t be able to resist the urge to kiss each other!

She just hadn’t counted on them both being busy.

“Sorry, Pinkie, but I’m still cleaning up the mess from the party you set up yesterday.” Twilight had sounded awfully grumpy when Pinkie Pie had approached her.

“Can’t stop to chat, Pinkie, I gotta get some clouds over to the farmlands or they’re not gonna get the rain they need.” Rainbow Dash had flown by before Pinkie had even been able to ask.

So perhaps the romantic boat ride was out. But Pinkie would not give up! She was a mare on a mission, and she would not rest, she would not sleep for an instant, until Rainbow Dash and Twilight Sparkle kissed!

But first she decided to go get some doughnuts.

And as luck would have it, Mrs. Cake had just finished a batch of chocolate frosted doughnuts when Pinkie walked in! Like it was destiny!

So, once her doughnut craving had been satisfied, she came to a startling realization: Mr. and Mrs. Cake were married! Which meant that they had to have kissed during the wedding, and possibly before that.

If there was anypony who could help her get Rainbow Dash and Twilight smooching, it would be Mrs. Cake.

“Heya Mrs. Cake, how did your first kiss happen?”

The sound of pots and bowls crashing against the ground echoed throughout the kitchen. A stunned Mrs. Cake slowly turned to Pinkie. “Wha-what was that, Pinkie?”

“I asked how you got your first kiss! Though now I wanna ask if you meant to drop all that stuff on the ground?”

If Mrs. Cake noticed the mess she had made, she didn’t comment on it. She was simply looking at Pinkie, as if she were searching for something. “Er, Pinkie Pie, are you perhaps trying to get somepony to kiss you?”

“Nope!” Pinkie Pie shook her head. What a silly idea, she didn’t have time to try and get somepony to kiss her when she was so busy trying to get Rainbow Dash and Twilight to kiss.

“Then why the interest in my first kiss?”

“I’m trying to help out a friend!”

Mrs. Cake’s eyes widened in realization, and she smiled at Pinkie. “Oh! A friend, huh?”

Pinkie nodded, wondering why Mrs. Cake put such emphasis on the word “friend”.

“Well, I suppose I could tell you then, to help out your friend.” There was that weird emphasis on “friend” again. “Let’s see. I suppose I was a few years younger than you are now. I had been dating this pegasus I’d met in school, a shy little colt named Storm Runner.

“We’d just finished having a nice dinner, and detoured to the park while he was walking me back home. We sat next to each other, looking up at the stars. Then we were looking into each others eyes, and he leaned forward and kissed me.”

"Wait, that's it? He didn't like, have a band playing a romantic song while you ate spaghetti? Or save you from some fire breathing turtle, or something romantic like that?" Pinkie asked.

“No, the moment was romantic enough. There doesn’t have to be some big event behind it, Pinkie, it’s the feelings that matter.”

That made sense, but the whole problem was that Twilight didn’t know about Dashie’s feelings! If she did, then Pinkie wouldn’t have to help Dashie smooch her.

She wasn’t even going to try and rework that sentence this time.

“So was that any help, Pinkie?” Mrs. Cake asked.

“Yeppers! Thanks a bunch, Mrs. Cake! Now I gotta go see a Princess about setting up a stargazing date!” Pinkie bounced out the door, leaving a confused and slightly flustered Mrs. Cake behind.

“P-Princess? And Pinkie… oh dear…”

Ponyville Park was typically a peaceful place, especially at night. With most ponies at home, there was a quiet, serene feeling.

Except from the bush that Pinkie Pie was currently hiding in. The leaves were shaking so hard that it looked like they would fall off, from Pinkie’s nervous excitement. She didn’t want to hurt the bush, but she couldn’t help it. Her greatest plan was about to come to fruition, she was both nervous and excited. If only she had a word to describe such a sensation…

She’d have to think about that some other time though. The first of her pawns had finally arrived.

Rainbow Dash scanned around the park, looking back to the letter she had been carrying with her. And probably wondering where the Midnight Wonderbolts Autograph Session was, since that’s what Pinkie Pie had put in the letter.

That had been the hardest part about her plan, getting Twilight and Rainbow Dash to the park. Even setting up the stars had been easier. Princess Luna had been too busy to accept visitors, so Pinkie had made her request to Princess Celestia. Celestia had been more than happy to pass the request on to Luna, knowing how happy it would make her sister to have ponies enjoying her night. And boy, did Princess Luna deliver! The sky was prettier than Pinkie had ever seen it, and it seemed like there were shooting stars every few minutes.

So Pinkie Pie had sent Rainbow Dash and Twilight each an anonymous letter, relevant to their interests. It was super sneaky! Even more sneaky than the mistletoe plan. She just really hoped that Twilight wasn’t allergic to mail.

“Rainbow Dash? What are you doing out here?” There she was! Twilight had finally arrived, carrying saddlebags laden with books, quills, and a telescope.

“Oh! Uh… nothing, just out for a walk.” Rainbow Dash quickly stuffed the letter under one of her wings.

“A walk? This late?”

“Well, you’re out here pretty late too!” Rainbow retorted.

Twilight nodded. “I know, I received a letter saying that there was a meeting of the Ponyville Astronomical Society tonight in the park, but I think somepony might have gotten the dates mixed up.” Twilight cast her gaze around the clearly empty park.

“Uhh, Twi? I think you might’ve been pranked.” Rainbow Dash turned back to her wing, pulling out the letter she’d hidden beneath it. “I got a letter saying there was a Midnight Wonderbolts Autograph session in the park too.”

Twilight looked at the letter skeptically. “And you believed it? Why on earth would the Wonderbolts hold an autograph session in the middle of the night in Ponyville?”

“Hey! I figured maybe it was some super secret thing! Besides, you came out here too, thinking there was some meeting going on.” Rainbow Dash defended herself, sounding a bit smug about Twilight having gotten caught.

Twilight rolled her eyes. “Rainbow, it makes sense that there would be a meeting for an astronomy group at night, you know, to see the stars and planets?”

Rainbow opened her mouth, looking for some kind of retort, but instead simply shook her head. “Ugh, fine! So what’re you going to do now?”

“Well, I’m already out here, and this is a pretty good night for stargazing. It looks like Princess Luna really outdid herself tonight. I’ll probably just stick around for a little bit and enjoy the view.”

“Sounds cool, mind if I chill with you?” Rainbow Dash asked, before looking a little nervous. “I-I mean, I’m already out here too! Plus, it might be more fun to watch the stars with a friend.”

Twilight smiled, and clapped her front hooves in excitement. “Oh, that would be wonderful, Rainbow Dash! Spike normally falls asleep before I start any kind of astronomy project, so I’ve never had somepony to watch the stars with before. Here, just let me get set up really quick.”

Pinkie watched as Twilight’s horn glowed, objects flying from her saddlebags. In quick succession, a blanket was laid on the ground, followed by the telescope being set on it, and then some books and quills. Once everything was ready, Twilight walked over and sat down on the blanket, before looking back at Rainbow Dash and patting the spot on the blanket next to her.

How on earth did Twilight not see the blush on Rainbow Dash’s face? Pinkie could see it all the way from the bush. It was no wonder these silly mares needed Pinkie’s help.

Rainbow Dash sat down on the indicated spot, scooching over just a little bit closer to Twilight. Pinkie watched them as they looked up at the stars, basking in the beauty of the night.

Pinkie watched with bated breath. Then with cupcake breath, then with bored out of her mind breath. They were just staring up at the sky! Well, Twilight was staring up at the sky. Rainbow Dash alternating between staring at the sky and staring at Twilight. It would have been adorable, if it wasn’t for the fact that they were definitely not kissing! She had set everything up perfectly, the princess herself had set up the night to be even more beautiful than normal, how could they not be kissing?

There was even a constellation that said KISS THE MARE!

Pinkie sighed. Apparently helping her friends kiss each other was even harder than she thought. She might have to resort to the spaghetti plan after all.

Twilight gave a small shiver, the night air cold even against her fur. Pinkie’s eyes widened to the size of cake platters, as she saw Rainbow Dash tentatively stretch a wing around Twilight. Twilight looked surprised, but smiled happily, scooting closer to Rainbow Dash.

Well, perhaps cuddling under the stars would have to do for now. At least they looked happy. Perhaps, Pinkie Pie wondered, she should just let them go at their own pace? Maybe they didn’t need her help with the smooching.

Or maybe she’d have to get her friends to all play spin-the-bottle tomorrow!