[MLP:FiM] You Can't Help Who You Love (Rainbow Dash, Rarity, Lightning Dust)


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Rainbow Dash was always concentrated on getting better, faster, more agile. She never had time for stallions or mares. But you can't help who you fall in love with. It was just unfortunate for her that the other pony had to be Lightning Dust.

Written for a FIMFiction Contest Prompt: 'Rainbow Dash is a lesbian'


"Rainbow Dash, Rainbow Dash!" Pinkie Pie said, chasing after her best friend flying through the sky.

"Hey, what's up, Pinks?" Rainbow Dash asked as she halted her forward trajectory, turning around to face Pinkie. She lazily flapped her wings to maintain her spot in the sky.

"You're invited to my super-special-awesome-funtasticular PARTY for Gummy tomorrow!" Pinkie Pie said, before taking a single jump and reaching Rainbow Dash several dozen feet in the air. Hoofing over an invitation to Rainbow Dash, Pinkie continued, saying, "And don't forget my birthday is the day after, too!"

"I hope you won't go crazy like you did last year," Rainbow Dash said, chuckling. She suddenly frowned, "Wait a minute, how did you manage to jump that high Pinkie? For that matter, how are you still up here?"

Gravity chose that moment to finally come back from its fifteen-minute coffee break, only to notice that while it had gone Pinkie Pie had taken full advantage of its union-mandated break to sneak in and go haywire. "I'LL SEE YOU AT THE PARTYYYYYYY[size=0.75em]YYYY[/size][size=0.5em]YYY[/size][size=0.25em]YYYyyy...[/size]" Pinkie Pie's voice trailed off.

"But she only dropped, like, thirty feet. I can still see her!" Rainbow Dash said aloud, trying to figure out how Pinkie Pie's voice had done that. "Eh, just Pinkie being Pinkie." Shrugging it off was always the best solution to Pinkie's antics. Looking at the sheet of paper Rainbow had been given, she looked for the time and location. "Five at Sugarcube Corner? Works for me, I'll have next week's weather schedule done well before then."

Turning back to face the way she had originally been going, Rainbow Dash went at a slow pace, languishing here and there to take a look at the town. She would never trade her wings for a unicorn's horn or the stamina of an Earth pony. Soaring upon the wings of freedom was the best thing, but right now, as she lazily surveyed the rooftops of Ponyville, she was reminded of yet another great thing about flying. Seeing the land from the sky was always a big shift in perspective from seeing it on hoof. Every time she brought a non-flier up into the air to take a look, it always blew the other pony's mind. From above, Ponyville and the Everfree Forest had a beauty that just could not be expressed to a ground-dweller.

At last, Rainbow Dash made it to her cloud home. "I'm home!" She announced as she walked in, then sighed, laying the invitation down on a table. She had never done something silly like that before the last few weeks, given she was the sole occupant of her cloud home. Now, she desperately wished it wasn't the case.

"Food, food, what's there to eat in the fridge?" Rainbow Dash asked aloud, now safe in her home with nopony to look at her weird for talking to herself. Walking over, she took a peek in the fridge. There were fruits and vegetables ranging from lettuce to carrots to blueberries; cheese, milk, eggs; a piece of fish, and even a bottle of apple cider she’d been saving. All of it provided the protein that a  growing Wonderbolt trainee needed. "Hmm, maybe an omelette?"

Using her flexible wings, Rainbow Dash managed to grab both the cheese and eggs along with a red pepper and an onion to spice up her omelette-to-be, before closing the door and setting the items down on the counter. Rummaging around in her cupboards, Rainbow found the pan and some vegetable oil to cook her eggs over the stove with.

Suddenly, the room began to spin, and Rainbow Dash sagged down to her cloud floor, waiting out the vertigo.

After a few seconds, she stood back up. The eggs no longer seemed tantalising anymore. Her stomach was attempting to beat Pinkie Pie's consecutive backflips record. "I'm not hungry anymore," Rainbow Dash muttered. 

She left the pan and oil out, but put the rest of the food away back into the fridge. Closing the fridge door, she stomped a hoof on the floor, limb nearly sinking into the soft clouds. "Damnit!" Rainbow cursed, walking into her bedroom.

After taking a look at Tank and making sure he was well-fed and watered, Rainbow Dash put her slippers on. It might have struck some ponies as odd, but Rainbow Dash did not consider herself a materialistic mare past her cloud house. Her accomplishments and her dreams were what sustained Rainbow Dash, not some mere trinket. She did, however, indulge herself at times, and getting custom-made slippers for her hooves that resembled Tank was one of those times. Rainbow Dash really loved the tortoise something fierce, and she couldn’t wait to bring him into all her Winter activities.

Climbing into her luxurious bed, Rainbow swept her gaze across her room. Wonderbolt memorabilia was dominant, with posters, figurines and other items dotting the walls and tables, and pictures of her friends and families rounding out the rest of the decor.

At last, her eyes landed on the suit laying on the table directly in front of her. It was a skin-tight suit that only covered her upper body and limbs up to her neckline, with a pair of goggles. The blue-and-yellow stitching had frayed and worn out at the edges, and it had lots its rich colours over time. Despite that, it still filled Rainbow Dash with giddy joy every time she saw it. It was the suit Rainbow had worn when she had went to and graduated from the Wonderbolt Academy, officially becoming a Wonderbolt trainee.

"I'm going to be a Wonderbolt," Rainbow Dash whispered.

Then she flopped down onto her bed and cried herself to sleep.


Rainbow Dash awoke with a startle, her chest heaving for breath. Her lungs burned, an unpleasant but familiar feeling to her.

She didn't remember much of what she had dreamed, but Rainbow Dash did recall the last few moments. She had been in a bath, with fresh water at the perfect temperature being pulled for her bathing pleasure. But the water hadn't stopped. Rainbow attempted to stop the flow of the water, but it was to no use. The water slowly got higher and higher, and Rainbow could not get out of the bath. At last, the water was nearly at the top, and she found herself having to hold her breath. Then the dream ended.

She knew it was just a dream, but it had felt so real. It was so convincing that even her body thought she was drowning, and Rainbow Dash had found herself starved for air on awaking.

Rainbow Dash looked at the clock, then out the sky. It was too early to even be called morning yet, but the area under her blankets was like an oven. Grimacing, she flipped the blankets over, welcoming the cool air onto her fur. With some effort, Rainbow managed to turn her limbs around, before hopping off onto the bed.

The pegasus pony walked over to one table that had a mirror set up on it. Many of her multi-coloured mane hairs were sticking up. No doubt she could get a picture in the dictionary next to 'bed mane' now. Rainbow let out an exasperated sigh, knowing there was no point in combing it down when she would go to sleep again soon anyways.

She scanned the row of pictures on the cabinet in front of the mirror. That was a mistake.

Rainbow Dash swallowed as she saw the picture she had done so well to not look at. It was a picture taken of her at the Wonderbolt Academy, at the end of the first day, before Spitfire posted the leadpony and wingpony pairs. Picture Rainbow had her Wonderbolt trainee suit on, before it had faded away into a dull blue and colour, and was standing next to another pegasus. The two were hugging one another with one limb each, looking sideways at the photographer with wide smiles, both violet and amber eyes teeming with excitement for the days ahead. Neither pegasus yet knew of the schism that was to split them forever apart by the end of the week.

Rainbow Dash wished she could throw the picture away, but she just couldn't muster the will.

"Lightning Dust," She whispered.

She grabbed the picture with both front hooves, hugging it against her barrel.

"You idiot," Rainbow Dash muttered, "Why did you have to go and be so reckless?"

Throughout Rainbow Dash's life, she had experienced many things that had troubled her. Coming off the high of her first Sonic Rainboom and then attempting to find Fluttershy, only to find out she had fallen to the earth below. The harrowing night in which she had gone to confront Nightmare Moon, her loyalties being tested along the way. Reuniting with her friend Gilda, only to find out the griffon had a nasty side that she had made little attempt to hide while in Ponyville. Falling into depression during the Mysterious Mare-Do-Well incident, only to find out her friends had orchestrated it to teach her a lesson.

Despite all those, the devastated look on Lightning Dust's face after Spitfire had torn the badge off her suit and then expelled her from the Academy was a punch to the gut like none other. It wasn't just because Lightning Dust had been foolish. Rainbow Dash been a fool too, to fall in love with the other pegasus.

"Why? Why?!" Rainbow Dash demanded, uncaring that nopony was around to answer her.


"Where's Rainbow Dash?" Rarity asked, looking around the room. She had just hung up the 'Happy Birthday Gummy!' banner in Sugarcube Corner. Something had seemed a little off, but Pinkie Pie's natural energy filled the room so much it was easy sometimes to forget the other hyperactive member of their closely-knit group.

"Dunno. Maybe she's sleeping? I didn't look at the orchard before I left, but she could be napping in one of the trees. If she is, Big Mac’s liable to see her sooner or later and wake her up,” said Applejack.

“She did seem a little bit tired earlier,” said Cloudchaser, one of the pegasus ponies who worked with Rainbow Dash on the local weather team. Although the party for Gummy the gator was lower-key compared to some of Pinkie Pie’s other parties, local ponies were still welcome to come in for a bite of food and to chat. A Pinkie Pie party had practically become Ponyville’s version of a coffee party over the years. “I wouldn’t put it past the boss to be crashing hard and coming in late.”

All three nervously looked over at the table where Pinkie Pie was rapidly talking to Twilight Sparkle and Fluttershy, while somehow still managing to cram cupcakes down her gullet at the same time. Thankfully, Pinkie hadn’t overheard them. If Pinkie were to hear of the possibility of Rainbow Dash being late, she would do something drastic.

“So, how’s the organisation for Pinkie’s birthday party going?” Cloudchaser asked, lowering her voice even further.

Applejack rolled her eyes as Rarity took her cue to speak. “Oh, it’s been awful, positively dreadful in fact! How do you plan a party for the pony who plans parties?”

“The same as we did last year?” Applejack asked.

“Oh Applejack, sometimes you say the silliest things. No, Pinkie Pie knows we know her birthday is the day after Gummy’s, she would expect a surprise party. Of course, Pinkie is such a dear pony, she would play along if we pretended not to know she turns one year older tomorrow, but it just wouldn’t be the same!”

“I suppose so, Rarity,” Applejack admitted. On second thought, her friend did have a point.

Bells suddenly chimed, and their attention turned to the doorway, where the overhead bells alerted that somepony was entering the bakery. In this case, who entered was a blue-coated pegasus they were all familiar with.

“Rainbow Dash! You made it...and you look awful, darling. Why, you look like you didn’t catch a wink of sleep last night!” Rarity said. The pony in question looked in rough condition, with hairs sticking up from both mane and coat, bloodshot eyes, and jaw hanging down slightly, looking forward in a daze.

“And I thought I was the tactless one,” Applejack said, rolling her eyes for the second time in as many minutes.

Rarity ignored her friend’s words as she instead chose to fuss over Rainbow Dash’s mane, using a brush and comb to put stray hairs back in place. “I know you don’t care too much about your looks, Rainbow dear, but you really should at least keep your hair straight before going out. Why, what would the stallions think if they saw your mane all messy like this?”

“Don’t care.”

“Pardon? Please speak up, Rainbow.”

“I said I don’t care about stallions.”

Rainbow Dash had indeed spoken louder. In fact, she had been so loud that her outburst had attracted attention from the entire room. She quickly blushed as she realised what she had just said, and took a quick glance around the room. Fortunately, the only stallion in the entire shop at the time was Mr. Cake, already happily married. “N-not like that, I mean! I’ve been more focused on getting into the Wonderbolts, I have no time for dating!”

“Oh! Then if we help you go through your training regimens every day you’ll be able to get into the Wonderbolts that much quicker, and then you can go around looking for the perfect stallion, and then you can both go sit in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-MMMPH!”
To everyone’s gratefulness, Twilight managed to defuse Pinkie’s rambling with a well-placed extra-large cupcake to the mouth. While Pinkie Pie was distracted, Twilight turned to face Rainbow Dash, and she said, “Rainbow, you look exhausted! Were you up all night reading!”

“No I wasn’t!” Rainbow Dash defended herself.

“She’s right,” Cloudchaser said. “She was fine earlier when she was setting up the storm for tonight. You just had a nap earlier by the looks of it, right boss?”

“Yeah, that’s right.”

Twilight frowned. She wasn’t the best judge of other ponies, but it looked like something was troubling her friend, and she wanted to ask Rainbow Dash about it. On the other hoof, Twilight at least knew the pegasus well enough to know Rainbow Dash would clam up if confronted in public. It would have to wait until later. Tomorrow was Pinkie Pie’s party, which Twilight would be busy helping set up, so Rainbow’s issue would have to wait until the day after.

“Um...Pinkie Pie, are you alright? You haven’t taken a breath in over a minute,” Fluttershy said.

Twilight spun around to face Pinkie Pie, who was clearly beginning to turn red more than pink. “Pinkie! Are you alright?! Oh my gosh, don’t tell me you choked on that cupcake! I know first aid, can I help you?” She asked frantically, going through the steps in her head on how to perform the Heimlich Maneuver. However, she couldn’t do it until Pinkie Pie either nodded her head yes, or passed out.

Suddenly, Pinkie swallowed, and managed to completely lick all the icing off her muzzle in a single rotation of her tongue. “Well, that was good Twilight! That tickled my uvula, heheh, that’s a funny word, uvula! Did you know some ponies call the uvula a throat penis sometimes? What kind of silly ponies would do that?”

Applejack shifted nervously.

Twilight wanted to say something, but she was in such a daze that her mouth was left hanging open.

“Oh, did you want a cupcake too, Twilight? Is that why your mouth is hanging open?”

Twilight grit her teeth. “Pinkiiiiiieeeee.”

Unbeknownst to Twilight Sparkle, however, she had not been the only one to notice Rainbow Dash’s haunted look. Even as Rarity witnessed the spectacle of Pinkie choking again, this time thanks to Twilight strangling her, she looked out of the corner of her eyes at Rainbow, standing off to the side. Perhaps she would need to take a detour tonight after the party before heading home.


Rainbow Dash took a brief walk after leaving Sugarcube Corner, working off the bloated feeling that eating the many pastries at Pinkie’s parties always left her with.

Once she felt able, it was a quick hop followed by a jump before she flew into the air, catching the windstreams just right to lift her up before her own natural pegasus magic kicked in, and Rainbow Dash flew up to meet her cloud home. From there, it was a short distance through the front door.

“Tank? Taaaaank?” She called out, looking for her pet tortoise. Rainbow quickly found him, sleeping in his enclosure, his food dish completely empty. She smiled. Tank was such a simple being, and sometimes she envied him for that. 

Her lips were wet. Rainbow Dash decided she had been holding out for long enough. Moving back into the kitchen area, she rummaged through her fridge, and dug out the long bottle of apple cider she had been saving. It may not have been for a milestone day, but Gummy’s party had lifted her spirits. The apple cider would cap off a decent evening. Now, where was that bottle opener?

Knock knock.

Rainbow Dash paused, setting the bottle down. Who could possibly be up here? Was it Cloudchaser, Flitter, Thunderlane, or one of the other weather ponies? Perhaps it was Fluttershy, dropping in after the party to check up on her. She hadn’t arrived at the party looking all that well, and Rainbow Dash wouldn’t put it past her fillyhood friend to be worried for her.

She sighed. Well, it was time to face the music, then. “I’m coming!” She yelled at the door, and the knocks subsequently stopped.

With little fanfare, Rainbow Dash opened the door. “Rarity?” She exclaimed.

“Hello, Rainbow Dash. May I come in?”

“Um, sure, I guess. But how did you get up here?”

“I teleported,” Rarity said as she strode in, her tone of voice making it sound like it was the most obvious thing in the world.

Rainbow Dash blinked, then scrunched her muzzle. “Teleported? Since when can you teleport?”

Rarity took a quick look around the open lobby area, noting that it was clean and tidy, before turning around to face Rainbow. “Just recently, I thought you knew. Ah, that’s right, you were gone at the time. That was the week you were at the Wonderbolts Academy.”

“Oh. I see.” And just like that, Rainbow’s good mood was gone, as she was reminded of that episode.

“Rainbow darling, what’s wrong?” 

“It’s, it’s nothing.”

Rarity raised an eyebrow. “I beg to differ. You’ve been looking down since the party, if not beforehand. Let me make you a promise, Rainbow Dash. Anything we talk about today, I won’t breathe a word to another being, pony or otherwise, without your permission. Cross my heart and hope to fly, stick a cupcake in my eye,” She said, going through the silly motions of the trademark Pinkie Promise.

Rainbow Dash looked at her suspiciously. “What are you talking about, Rares?”

Rarity rolled her eyes. “Really, darling, don’t be so obtuse. Maybe others can’t tell, but I can. You’ve been having relationship issues lately, haven’t you?”

“Ho-how did you?” Rainbow stuttered, then clamped a hoof over her mouth.

“For some reason, others think I’m a good pony to come and talk to for relationship advice.” Rarity shrugged, and said, “Over time, I like to believe I actually got good at it. But I also learned to recognise that look, the one of a pony feeling down because she’s been having troubles with love. So, who’s the lucky stallion, or is it a mare?”

Rainbow Dash’s shoulders sagged, and she hung her head, looking down at the floor. The contours of the cloud bed looked so fascinating right now. She would rather be anywhere else than here at this moment. Why, oh why, did Rarity have to learn how to teleport?

She sighed. Rainbow supposed there wasn’t any point in obfuscating, not when Rarity had managed to hone in on the issue. “It’s a mare.”

“And who is the mare, then?”

Rainbow Dash didn’t say anything. Instead, she walked away, giving Rarity a ‘come-hither’ motion with one hoof. Dutifully, the unicorn followed behind her, staying quiet when she spotted Tank sleeping, until they came to Rainbow’s bedroom.

“My oh my, you certainly have a lot of Wonderbolts material,” Rarity marvelled as she looked around. Even the blanket was official Wonderbolts merchandise, though Rarity didn’t recognise any more than a single Wonderbolt. Of the one she did, Spitfire was far younger than she was in real life, meaning the blanket was likely a few years old.

“Yeah,” Rainbow Dash said in agreement. “After I got my Cutie Mark, I became obsessed with speed, you know. One day, I saw the Wonderbolts, and then they became my whole life. I still pushed myself to achieve the Sonic Rainboom again, but then I started to also work on my maneuvers. If all the Wonderbolts wanted was pure speed, I would have made it a long time ago, but they’re also interested in how agile you are, how sharp you can turn, how quick you can brake after hitting top speed, your ability to stay in a formation, your capacity to resist high G’s, your-”

“Yes, I think I get it,” said Rarity.

Rainbow rubbed her head, embarrassed at how she had suddenly started rambling. “Anyways, I resolved not to become just the fastest thing alive, but also the best stuntspony. When I moved to Ponyville, I did it to follow Fluttershy, who decided to live here. I got a job as a weatherpony, but every spare minute I had, I was practicing, always practicing. I never had any time for dating.”

“Nopony caught your eye? Nopony on the weather team, even?”

Rainbow shook her head. “Nopony. It wasn’t even that I didn’t have the time, I simply wasn’t interested in stallions or mares, at all. Even Fluts has a few magazines in her house, I’ve seen them, but I never bought any. I think I was simply, what’s the term, asexy?”

“Asexual,” Rarity said, raising both eyebrows at the anecdote about Fluttershy’s reading habits. “It’s a bit uncommon, but not exactly unheard of. But that was then, and now you’ve fallen in love. What happened?”

Walking over to her table with the mirror, Rainbow Dash picked up a picture. Turning around, she hoofed it over to Rarity.

Rarity looked down at the picture in interest, wishing she had her glasses on. “Hmm, this is the Wonderbolt Academy, I would recognise that uniform anyways. There’s you, and then, what was her name again? The one who almost got us killed with the tornado? Lightning Dusk?”

“Lightning Dust,” Rainbow Dash corrected her.

“Ah, that’s it, thank you. I thought that wasn’t right, and I almost had it. Wait a minute.” Rarity looked up, eyes wide with surprise. “She’s the one you fell in love with?!”

Rainbow Dash looked off to the side, rubbing one front limb with her other hoof. “We were there for a week, ok? Lightning Dust had her issues even at the start, but it wasn’t until after a week of getting to know her that she decided to pull a stupid stunt that nearly killed all of you!”

Rarity stayed silent for a few seconds, waiting to see if Rainbow Dash had anything more to vent out. Once it was clear her friend was done for the moment, she took a few more seconds to process and assess what Rainbow had just told her.

“She was the pony you flew with for most of the week, right?” Rarity asked, choosing her words delicately. Rainbow Dash was clearly upset, and it would be remiss of Rarity not to offer her a shoulder to cry on if that was what the other pony needed. “You probably chatted while stretching, at your breaks, during meals, and even before bed.”

“We bunked together after the first night, to encourage the leadpony and the wingpony to be closer than just in the air,” Rainbow Dash said. “I learned a lot about her family then. She didn’t really have any friends. Lightning Dust was like me, always training. Every day was a fight to increase her flight times by a fraction of a second.”

“In other words, she was somepony just as dedicated and competitive as you are, and then you bonded over that mutual experience.”

“Yeah, that sounds about right,” Rainbow Dash said. She wished she had a window in here to look outside. Since there was none, she settled for looking at the mirror, dull violet eyes looking back at her. “There wasn’t anything really there for the first few days, but then, I started noticing her, like really noticing her. She had this most amazing smile, not like a smirk, but an actual genuine smile, when Spitfire or I praised her. There was the way her tail flicked back and forth when she was agitated. She strutted more than she really walked, and I just couldn’t help but watch and like every little detail about her. Soon, it was a guilty pleasure to hit the showers after practice, just so I could see the way she combed her hair, how she looked with her hair down.”

“You fell for her, and you fell hard.”

“Yeah,” Rainbow Dash said. She felt herself smiling as she reminisced about Lightning Dust. Then her lips curled down into a frown as she all too easily recalled how it ended.

“Did you ever,” Rarity bit her lip. It had been easy to ask questions this personal to others, but they had come to her for relationship help. It was the other way around here, when she had come to Rainbow Dash. Rarity was acutely aware that one misstep could make things awkward between the two, if not rip their friendship asunder. Taking a deep breath, she decided to press forward, “Did you ever tell her?”

Rainbow grimaced. “No, and I’m glad. I don’t know if she would have rejected me or not, but it wouldn’t have mattered anyways. She would’ve pressured me to help her form that tornado anyways, and I still would have yelled at her.”

“Do you know that for a certainty? The tornado, that is? Perhaps Lightning Dust may have been willing to listen to you then if she knew you had feelings for her.”

Rainbow shook her head. “No, she wouldn’t have. I know Lightning Dust, because she’s like me, just even more daring. She was too stubborn. Once she got an idea into her head, nothing would have made her back down. I don't regret it, though, telling her off like that. I liked, really liked her, but you guys are my friends. There's no way I would take her side after she did that. It hurt me to yell at her, but it had to be done. She might respect Spitfire, but I was the only pony she might have accepted criticism from.” She sniffed, holding back some tears. "And she didn't, and then she was expelled, and I haven't seen her since then."

The two sat in silent for a few more minutes. During that time, Rainbow Dash made jasmine tea, Rarity’s favorite. The apple cider had long since been put back in the fridge. That was an unusual thing for Rainbow to do, as she never figured she would be hosting Rarity in her own home, but then, odder things had happened before. Things like Rainbow Dash falling in love, for one.

With a muttered “Thank You”, Rarity took a sip of her tea, looking up at the cloud roof. Rainbow Dash supposed it was a lot to take in for her unicorn friend, but she was already feeling better. She had been carrying this secret around for a few months already, letting it weigh her down like a rock underwater.

At last, Rarity spoke. “Well, darling, here’s what I think.”

Rainbow Dash leaned in. Rarity wasn’t exactly an unbiased third-party, but she was desperate for advice from a good friend.

“I’m not saying today, or tomorrow, or even this month or this year, but once you’ve cleared up your feelings and you feel you can go through with it, go and find Lightning Dust, and talk to her.”

“You’d be alright with that?” Rainbow Dash asked, murmuring. “Even though she nearly killed you?”

Rarity’s grip on her cup tightened, and she opted instead to switch to a magical grip. “I still have the occasional nightmare about it, to be honest. But I am willing to put it behind me, especially as it was a freak accident that should never have occurred in the first place. But that is only if Lightning Dust is willing to change, for the better.” She put her cup down and met Rainbow Dash’s gaze, blue eyes meeting violet. “And she has to be willing to change for you, not the other way around. The Element of Loyalty chose you. Oh, I know we aren’t always perfect, but you are the bearer of one of the six Virtues of Harmony. You cannot give up what makes you, well, you.”

Rainbow thought her friend’s words over as she took a sip of her own cup of tea. She wished she had added in some honey. “And if she doesn’t?”

“Then at least you can seek closure. Maybe it won’t be your happy ending, I certainly never got mine, but sometimes that’s just how the stitches fray.”

Rainbow Dash chuckled at that last line. “Or how the cookie crumbles as Pinkie might say, or the way the apple falls, as Applejack might say.”

Rarity took the jest in good cheer, bringing her cup up her face to hide her smile.

“But seriously, thanks Rarity. I think I needed to hear those words.”

“Glad to hear that. Did you have anything else you wanted to talk about?”

Rainbow thought about that. There was one thing, but she wasn’t sure she wanted…”I think I like mares,” She blurted out. Her eyes widened in horror even as her mouth continued to putter on, “Like, really like mares. Ever since that day, I’ve bought magazines, you know, the ones with the centrefolds. Stallions don’t do anything for me, but mares, oh my gosh, mares! I didn’t even realise they could stretch like that!”

“Rainbow!” Rarity said in a scandalized tone of voice, her face reddening. She took in a whiff of the vapors emanating from her still hot tea, then calmed down. “No, I apologise. That was rude of me.” She took a few moments to carefully choose her next few words, and said, “And what has that accomplished for your sexual appetite?”

“Well, sometimes I get myself lost in fantasies,” Rainbow Dash said, dreamily looking at a wall. “Me and the other mare, you know, experimenting. Sometimes the other mare is Lightning Dust, in a world where everything between us is peachy keen. But, um, you know…” Rainbow Dash fidgeted, blushing, tapping her front hooves together.

Rarity tensed. Could this be it? “Go ahead, darling.”

“Well, um...couldyoumakemeabridleandsocksplease.”

Rarity blinked, and tilted her head. She had heard what Rainbow Dash said, but it took a few seconds to fully process what the pegasus had said. At last, she smiled again. “Of course, darling. And remember, like I said, I’ll keep your secrets until you feel comfortable enough.”

Rainbow Dash let out a breath of relief, and mirrored Rarity’s smile. “Thanks Rares. You’re the best.”


With Rainbow Dash’s embarrassing request out of the way, the two continued to engage in idle chatter. Rainbow Dash knew what Rarity was doing, attempting to make her comfortable by bringing the conversation back to ‘normal’ topics, and she was grateful to her friend for it.

At last, they had polished off Rainbow’s tea kettle, and with an extended farewell, Rarity left, teleporting back to the ground.

“So Rarity can teleport, huh?” Rainbow Dash asked, talking to herself now that she was the only pony around again. “What other things do I not know about my friends?”

She looked back into her bedroom, eyes landing on the picture. “Well, I guess there’s things they don’t know about me, so that’s only fair.”

Rainbow walked over to her mirror cabinet, where the picture and several others were standing on, and then she opened one of the drawers in the cabinet. The picture hadn’t been the only keepsake from the Wonderbolts Academy that she had of Lightning Dust.

Taking out a green feather, Rainbow looked at it, letting her room’s lightning catch the feather’s barbs just so, brilliantly enriching the green colour. On their second-last day together, after bunking together and talking for so many hours, Rainbow Dash and Lightning Dust had made a decision in the moment. Best Friends Forever, and to symbolise it, they would each keep a feather from the other’s wings.

“I don’t know where you are, Lightning Dust, but eventually, I’ll come find you,” Rainbow swore. “You had better be a better pony when I do, or else I’ll make you one. I’m the Element of Loyalty. I won’t leave you behind forever.”

Satisfied with her promise, she tucked the feather back into her drawer, closing it.


Many hundreds of kilometres away, a pegasus awoke.

Looking out the window, she was satisfied with the cloud cover, sufficient both to water the local apple orchard and to cool the area ahead of the buffalo’s next ritual stampeding. Work was work, it wasn’t training, but she still took pride in her job. With that, she took a look over towards where Cloudsdale was, far off in the distance.

Suddenly, she had an epiphany. “Rainbow Dash?” She murmured. She shook her head. Whenever the Rainbow Factory put out a rainbow, it always reminded her of the friend she had made and thoroughly lost within the space of a week.

Going over to her closet, full of hats, buffalo tribal garb and a few training suits, she rummaged through the bottom until she finally found a box. Opening it up, she took out a blue feather. Looking out the window, she alternated glances between the rainbow and the blue feather.



Just to clarify, this is before Magical Mystery Cure.

When considering ideas for the 'Rainbow Dash is a lesbian' prompt, I considered a comedic one and a dramatic one, and ended up going for the dramatic one. At the same time, I don't like writing a social issue such as "X is a lesbian" or "X is transgender" or "There are racial tensions" into a fictional setting without adapting it to that actual setting. I'm not taking any potshots here at any other stories, but it's for that reason I wouldn't write 'Rainbow Dash is a gay and she's nervous about coming out to her friends because there's a lot of people who hate gay people', because that's sticking a real-world issue into a MLP framework without attempting to put a MLP spin on it.

So I settled on the idea you see here: that Rainbow Dash fell in love with Lightning Dash. It's an interesting character piece to how Lightning Dash affected Rainbow Dash, given their similar competitive attitudes. Instead of being melodramatic about how she's a lesbian, Rainbow Dash is being melodramatic about how the pony she fell in love with also turned out to be a nasty piece of work in some regards. While I think it came out well, it also weakens the story's relation to the 'Rainbow Dash is a lesbian' prompt, as it feels like an afterthought, with Rainbow being more Lightningsexual than homosexual.

I could have used Twilight Sparkle or Fluttershy or perhaps even Applejack as the pony to talk with Rainbow Dash, but chose Rarity. Part of that is because she just seems the go-to pony for romantic advice, something I even parody in the text, but also because of all the Mane 6, I feel the most comfortable with writing her 'voice'. Using Rarity wasn't something that was really pre-planned, though. Some of my writing is 'spontaneous writing' where I have a general plot outline but write the scenes as they come to me, which sometimes causes scenes to go on a little too long. The whole scene with Pinkie Pie choking happened solely because I felt like the scene was too short and needed something wacky to break things up.

I didn't intend to write the very last scene with Lightning Dust, but figured at the last minute I should to justify her spot on the character tags. Her existence is the driving narrative of the story, but I'm sure somebody would have complained about her being tagged but not actually being present in the story.