Can’t Start A Fyre Without a Spark Pt.1
It was around midnight in Equestria. Luna’s moon hung high in the sky, the huge white orb glowing through the darkness of night. Blaze was pacing around nervously. His bright red coat and fiery mane stuck out in the otherwise peaceful and dark evening. For a pegasus who was well known for his calm level headedness it was strange to see him so frantic. However, like any father can tell you, there is no experience quite like your first child. It brought him such a strange mix of joy and fear. What if something went wrong? What if he was a bad father? What if the kid hated him? He continued to push himself further and further into his own fears. A sudden scuff of hooves across the floor snapped him back into reality. A worn and very disheveled looking pony stood in the doorway,“It’s done.” said a young Nurse Redheart with a satisfied smile. “The operation was a success.”
At that moment, the immense joy and relief Blaze felt trumped any doubts or fears he may have previously held. He was a father now. Redheart led Blaze inside where the mother was with child. Blaze felt his eyes get wet, and for half a second, his vision was blurred with tears of joy. The moment seemed to hang in the air forever, then after what seemed like ages, Blaze slowly trotted toward his wife.[a]
“He’s beautiful Crystal,” he said whispering to his wife. She looked up at him and gave him a weak, tired smile.
“He’s a she, Blaze. You have a daughter.”
Blaze was dumbstruck. He had a daughter. HE HAD A DAUGHTER. He wanted to fly through all of Equestria and scream it at the top of his lungs. BY CELESTIA, HE HAD A DAUGHTER!! Tears of sheer elation began to well up into his eyes. Nothing, nothing he had ever experienced or ever would for the rest of his life would compare to this moment. The moment when he first laid his eyes on his little bundle of joy. He wiped his eyes and looked back at the foal clutched in Crystal’s hooves. She had a bright yellow coat like her mother, but she also had a fiery red and orange mane like her father. He could have looked at that little foal all night. It was, really and truly, love at first sight.
Suddenly, the foal turned and looked straight at her dad. Blaze looked right into her eyes. She had a fire in them. Just like her father he thought. He broke his gaze and looked again to his wife. “What should we call her?” he asked.
Crystal took a moment and thought. “Spitfyre. We’ll call her Spitfyre.”
Blaze smiled, it was a good name.”My little Spitfyre.” Nurse Redheart nudged him gently.
“Excuse me, Mr. Blaze, but your wife has just made a delivery and both of you could use some sleep. Why don't you two rest and I'll send a doctor over to check on your wife tomorrow.”
She then turned and quietly left the room, leaving the young couple alone with their new foal.
“She’s right Crystal, we shou-” Blaze began but he stopped and smiled. She was already fast asleep with Spitfyre curled tightly in her hooves.
“Goodnight Crystal,” he whispered leaning over giving her a small kiss on the cheek.
“And goodnight little Spitfyre,” he said leaning over and ever so gently kissing the new foal on the cheek. He paused for a moment and looked around the room.
“My Spitfyre,” he said to himself one more time before he promptly sat in a nearby chair and fell into a deep, dreamy slumber.[b]
Blaze woke up and sunlight was already pouring in through the windows. He had slept in. He got up from the chair yawning and rubbing the sleep from his eyes. Then it hit him. He had slept in, on his daughter’s birthday. It had been five short years since that fateful night. Time seemed to go by so fast. He looked around the house. Either no pony else was awake or Crystal had already taken Spitfyre out somewhere for her birthday. He headed upstairs to their bedroom, and cracked open the door. Crystal was still sound asleep with Spitfyre curled up tightly beside her. She had been having terrible night-terrors lately. She would always burst into their room with hot tears streaming down her face. She’d run and jump in the bed quivering and mumbling in between sobs about all the horrible things she had seen. [c]She talked of awful things like death and loss. Crystal would always hold her close and rock back and forth all the while whispering kind and calming things into her ears until the crying stopped and she drifted back into a peaceful slumber.[d] He smiled and quietly closed the door and went back downstairs.
Blaze made his way to the living room. In his head, he had formed the perfect birthday plan. In a moment of hesitation however he grabbed his goggles off the mantle place. They were old and covered with dust, but they were as sturdy as they were the day he first got them. He put them on, feeling the familiarity of them. Just one quick flight, he thought, to Sugarcube corner to pick up the cake. Besides, his daughter couldn’t rightly have a birthday without a cake, now could she? He flexed his wings when he got outside; it had been some time since he had done a considerable amount of flying. He took off with one powerful down stroke and began rocketing towards the sky. He broke through the clouds and started to beat his wings in the direction of Sugarcube corner. Blaze started moving faster and faster. The wind was whipping in his face and whistling through his ears as he streaked across the sky. “It’s almost like the old days,” he thought. He started to reflect back to his younger days; back when he was still with them, but he quickly pushed the memories from his mind. Those days were through; he was a father now. He landed outside the home of Mr. and Mrs. Cake, and after a brief conversation, some laughter, and a couple of bits, Blaze was on his way back home with birthday cake in tow. He looked off in the distance and spied some very sinister looking clouds. Must be the big storm the weather pegasi were planning to make up for missing all those days of rain, he thought. The clouds were huge, swollen, and jet black. Blaze had never seen such menacing clouds before even in his younger days, but he had faith in the weather team at Ponyville. Besides, now was not the time for worrying. It was a time for celebrating. By the time Blaze reached home Crystal and Spitfyre both were already awake.
Blaze could hear Spitfyre anxiously pestering her mother about what she got for her birthday while she was desperately trying to get breakfast prepared. He swung open the door wide, shouting “I heard it was somepony’s birthday?” Spitfyre noticing the grand entrance of her father forgot all about trying to squeeze information out of her mother.
“Daddy!” she cried with delight.
“Hey there, pipsqueak.” he responded with equal mirth. Spitfyre ran over to Blaze nearly vibrating with excitement “Whatcha got there? Can i see it? Is it mine?” Blaze smiled at the energetic filly.
“I don’t know,” he replied playfully, “but if somepony isn’t a good girl and doesn’t sit down and eat her breakfast she won't get anything.” Obediently Spitfyre sat down in the nearest chair and tore into the plate of neglected breakfast.
“Slow down Spitfyre, I don’t want you to choke,” said Crystal “and sit up straight, and when was the last time you brushed your mane, young lady?” Crystal continued to nag the filly as she finished her breakfast. Blaze smiled. It was just another morning as usual. Far off he thought he heard thunder rumbling but quickly dismissed it. He quietly snuck into the kitchen and hid the cake on a high up cabinet where Spitfyre couldn't see and slipped back into the dining room. Crystal looked at him and smiled. The smile disappeared and was replaced by a look of puzzlement.
“Spitfyre, honey go play outside,” she said eyes still riveted on Blaze “mommy and daddy need to talk, and don’t go too far you hear me?”
“Yes ma’am.” Spitfyre responded as she dashed out of the room. as soon as the door closed Crystal spoke.
“You’re wearing your goggles.” She said quietly, staring at him.
“Yeah, I put them on when I went to go pick up her cake. I guess it’s just an old habit.” Blaze responded nonchalantly trying to avoid the subject.
“You’re retired Blaze. You’ve been retired for four years,” she was getting angry now. “Promise me you didn’t do any flying.” she said suddenly. Blaze knew he couldn’t lie to his wife so he didn’t even try.
“Yes I went flying today,” he sighed “I just needed to get out some pent up energy.”
“DAMMIT BLAZE, YOU AREN’T A WONDERBOLT ANYMORE.” she yelled tears now streaming from her face. Blaze just stood where he was, not knowing what to say. There was a loud crash as the far off storm was bearing down upon them. after a while Crystal began again.
“Do you remember why we moved to Ponyville Blaze?” she asked.
“To start a family,” Blaze whispered.
“That’s right and what is a family without a father, Blaze? After your accident I didn’t think that I would even be able to have a family with you, but you pulled through. I know it hurts that the doctor told you that you can’t fly anymore, it’s like telling a fish not to swim, but Blaze this family needs you, I need you, Spitfyre needs you.” Blaze cringed at the mention of the accident. It was a moment he would never forget. He had been young then; young and reckless. He was the head air-pony of the Wonderbolts, Equestria’s best team of fliers. They were doing a special celebration in Cloudsdale. It was to be Blaze’s last show before he retired and let somepony else take over. But Blaze wanted to go out with a bang, and what better way than to try out his newest most dangerous stunt? The Wonderbolts took to calling it the Blaze of Glory. Each one would accelerate straight upwards peeling off one by one until only Blaze was left. He would then turn and dive straight downward towards the crowd and a split-second before he hit the ground would pull up sharply and skid across the clouds leaving a trail of bright hot fire behind him. On the day of the show everything had been flawless, but when the time came for the Blaze of Glory, Blaze had flown too high in his own reckless abandon. The air was too thin, and it was hard for Blaze to breath. His vision began to blur. Keeping his eyes opened seemed harder and harder until finally he blacked-out completely. He began spiraling to the ground unconscious, but to the eager on-lookers it appeared to be part of the maneuver, until Blaze fell straight through the clouds. Blaze came to just in time to see the Everfree forest rushing up to meet him.
The trees softened the otherwise fatal crash but he was still in a horrible state. Bones broken everywhere. He was covered in head to hoof with all manners of cuts and gashes. He was a grisly sight to behold, but inside him was the real problem. A couple of his ribs had broken and punctured his lungs, and as the doctors would later tell him it was by the grace of Celestia alone that Blaze had lived long enough to receive care. He spent 6 months in Canterlot Medical Care and Trauma Center. It was a long painful fight that Blaze fought everyday just to stay alive. But after the long 6 months he was discharged from the facility almost as good as new. However, the damage done to the lung had held unforeseen consequences. The doctors told Blaze if he exerted himself too hard he could risk rupturing his lung again which could prove to be crippling and even fatal. So Blaze lived through the ordeal only to be stripped of the only thing that gave his life meaning. Flight. On the day he was discharged the Wonderbolts came to visit. They brought him the only thing that had survived the crash; his old flight goggles. They told him he would always be a Wonderbolt even if he could never again take to the air.
There was a bright flash of light followed by a loud boom. Blaze was forced out of his memories and back into the present. The once far off storm was directly over-top of Ponyville now. Crystal was still standing in front of him. She was no longer crying but her eyes were red and puffy.
“I'm sorry, honey”, he said softly “I promise, no more flying.” Blaze pulled her forward and embraced her. She clung to him tightly, but something was still wrong. Crystal seemed to notice it too. they both realized it at once.
“Spitfyre! She’s still outside!” shouted Crystal. Without a moment's hesitation both ponies burst outside into the pouring rain. Crystal headed towards the Everfree forest while Blaze went through the town.
“SPITFYRE, SPITFYRE!” he called but his voice was drowned out by the rain and peels of thunder. The streets were deserted. Everypony was inside their house cowering in fear. Ponyville had never experienced a storm like this before. Blaze ran and ran, calling her name but heard no reply.
Crystal must have found her, he thought. He turned around and headed straight for the forest. He was a third of the way to the outskirts of the forest when there was a blinding flash accompanied by a deafening boom that shook the very earth, and then there was a scream.
Blaze took off. He flew hard and he flew fast. He needed to be there and he needed to be there NOW. He was pumping his wings faster than he ever had. The ground became a blur beneath him. Suddenly he became aware of a dull pain in his side but pushed it back. Spitfyre was more important. However the pain only intensified, until his whole body seemed to be on fire. It was becoming difficult for him to breathe but he kept flying until the pain became so unbearable it forced him to land, and start walking. He staggered forward breathing heavily. He had to get to Spitfyre. He finally came to the outskirts of the forest. He was greeted by a large fallen tree, and he could make out a bright yellow speck in the distance. Blaze continued step by agonizing step until his hooves could no longer support him. He fell to the ground with a wet splash, defeated. Glancing up he could tell he was close. Only a few more feet. Gasping for breath Blaze began to crawl through the muddy ground digging his hooves into the earth and pulling himself along until he could no longer move and his hooves were cracked and bleeding. His vision began to fade and the crash of the rain and thunder seemed so far off. Before him he saw his daughter looking down at something pinned underneath the tree, and before the blackness completely took hold of him he heard her pleading to it.
“Mommy, please get up, please, I'm scared.”
Cant Start a Fyre Without a Spark Pt.2
Spitfyre had woke up that morning excited; it was her birthday after all. When she came down stairs she tried in vain to get some information about the present she had asked for from her mom. When Blaze came home she was sure she was bound to get something totally awesome. But first there was breakfast. She began to quickly devour her meal until her mother caught her.
“Slow down Spitfyre,” she said “I don’t want you to choke, and sit up straight, and when was the last time you brushed your mane young lady?”
Spitfyre sighed it was mom being her usual self. She started eating slower to appease her mother. She could be so demanding sometimes. Just as she had finished, her mother told her to go outside. Spitfyre could tell something was wrong but she didn’t want to upset her father; after all she had promised to be a good pony on her birthday. So she got up quietly and hurried to the door. As soon as it shut behind her she carefully pressed her ear against it.
“You’re retired Blaze, you’ve been retired for four years.”
Her mother said. She sounded angry. Spitfyre was scared, her parents never got mad at each other. Ever! She kept listening.
“Promise me you didn’t do any flying,”
she heard her mother say, even angrier still. Flying? She had never seen her dad fly . She'd assumed that he was a horrible flier and was too embarrassed to do it around other ponies. Now she was intrigued, she had to know more. She pressed her whole body against the door hanging on every word.
“DAMMIT BLAZE! YOU'RE NOT A WONDERBLOT ANYMORE!”
her mother yelled.The exclamation was accompanied by a crash of thunder. The sheer surprise of it sent her spinning head over hooves. Spitfyre quickly jumped up and ran. It was all too much. Her mother had rarely ever raised her voice and she never ever swore. What if they hurt each other? she thought. What if they don’t love each other anymore and go away forever and leave me all alone? She kept running, all the while lost in her own fears. She felt tears running down her face, or was it rain? How far had she run? Where was she? There was a bright flash followed by a loud boom. Spitfyre was panicking. “Momma!, Momma!” she screamed, but her words were lost in the pouring rain and roaring thunder. She was in full on panic mode now. She began to run blindly, the rain stinging her face as she went.
“MOMMA!, DADDY! ”
she screamed at the top of her lungs over and over until her voice was hoarse and her throat, raw. Finally her tiny body gave out. Her hooves slipped from under her and she landed in the muddy ground with a splash. Her legs trembled in a feeble attempt to stand, and her whole body shook with fear. Spitfyre, too exhausted to rise, curled tightly into a ball, Hot tears flowing out of her eyes. She was sure she was going to die.
She looked up and saw the gargantuan trees before her. She had run quite a long way if she was in the Everfree forest. There was a blinding flash followed by a blast of thunder that shook the very Earth she laid upon. There was a loud splintering noise; Spitfyre could hear it, but she was stunned by the lighting and couldn’t see. She forced herself back on her feet to flee, when something slammed roughly into her side sending her sprawling back to the earth. Just moments later there was a dull thud. Once again the earth shook. The thud was accompanied by a sharp, cracking noise followed by a cry of pain.
Spitfyre struggled to her wobbly feet. There was a stinging pain in her hind leg that she had twisted funny when she fell and she was sore all over . In a daze she limped to the to the source of the scream willing her eyes to focus. It took precious seconds but before long she stumbled upon a grizzly scene that would haunt her for the rest of her life.
Crystal didn’t know how long she had been searching, it seemed like ages since she had left the house, and ventured into the dreadful storm in search of Spitfyre.
“SPITFYRE!” she called hoping that the little filly would here her over the raging storm.
She refused to think of anything else except Spitfyre. Spitfyre was her daughter, her pride and joy, her everything, and she loved her more than life itself. Every muscle in her body ached and burned. but it didn’t matter. Only Spitfyre mattered.
Her ears perked up.
She heard the faintest sound over the storm. It was Spitfyre! Crystal turned towards the sound with renewed energy beating her wings vigorously.
“Hold on sweetheart." Crystal yelled, "I’m coming!”
Soon the bright yellow filly came into view. A feeling of relief washed over Crystal she smiled and her heart felt at ease.The young filly seemed frightened, but unhurt. As Crystal headed towards her daughter, a huge bolt of lighting struck the tree in front of the sobbing filly, followed by a blast of thunder. Crystal watched in horror as the tree slowly began to topple in Spitfyre’s direction. Instinct kicked in. Without thinking Crystal took off, faster than she had ever flown before. She pushed her wings to the limit. Spitfyre was about a hundred yards away, but it felt like ten thousand. Everything happened so slowly. She reached Spitfyre just in time, tackling her out of the way, only to be too late to save herself. The tree caught her in the flank and smashed her into the ground with a sickening thud. White light exploded in her eyes and she screamed in agony.
The pain was unbearable, it was like nothing she had ever experienced and it was all she could do to not slip into a fatal unconsciousness. She was gasping for breath unable to breathe with the weight off the tree bearing down on her. However she saw Spitfyre limp over towards her and she then she smiled weakly. She’s okay. Once she saw Spitfyre ,safe, standing before her she knew it was worth it.
she started to say with the last of her breath. Everything was starting to melt away, the pain that was once so intense was so far away.
“I......love....you” she gasped at last sighing and closing her eyes. Yes, it was worth it.
Spitfyre watched in horror, paralysed with fear, unable to accept what had just happened. It was all her fault. If I hadn't have run away then...then.
A fresh set of tears welled up in her eyes.
“Mommy, please get up. Please. I’m scared.” she pleaded to her mother’s lifeless form “Please.” her pleading was broken by sobbing. She knelt down and hugged her mother, tears mixed with the rain rolling down her cheeks. Spitfyre suddenly became aware of another noise beside that of her own sobbing. She turned behind her to see Blaze gasping on the ground.
“Dad!” she shouted turning her attention to her father “Daddy what’s wrong?” there was no response.
She ran over to him. He was covered in cuts and bruises. his once illustrious coat and fiery mane were now covered in mud and flecks of blood. His hooves were cracked and bleeding, and blood was seeping from his muzzle.
“No daddy not you too! It’s not fair. You can’t go too. I don’t wanna be alone.” Spitfyre whispered into his ear,
“I don’t wanna be alone...” Blaze shuddered and his eyes grew dim and then finally closed
Blaze opened his eyes and he was back in his comfy chair. He was slick with sweat and breathing hard. His head was spinning. Crystal was standing over him with a worried look on her face. Sunlight was pouring in through the windows behind her giving her a sort of ethereal appearance and illuminated everything in the room with a pale golden glow. Her bright yellow coat had turned a majestic gold in the light, and she seemed to float gracefully lime an angel. The angel spoke to him,
“Blaze, honey, are you okay? You’re all sweaty. Were you having a nightmare?”
Blaze shook his head still in a daze. Was it a dream? It had felt so real. His head swam and he could hardly remember anything.
“Its okay now.” Crystal said to him, “Come here”
Blaze stood and embraced his wife. She squeezed him tightly and he leaned in burying his face in her mane. She smelled fresh and clean and she was so peaceful. Blaze wanted to hold her there forever. He felt as if he let go he might never see her again.
“I love you” he said and kissed her. But it felt wrong, everything felt wrong. He started to remembered something.
“Where’s Spitfyre.” he said urgently.
Crystal looked at him strangely “Spitfyre? Why she’s outside.”
Blaze made a motion for the door when Crystal stepped in front of him. “No need to check on her. stay here with me.” she said slowly advancing toward him. Blaze began to back away,
Crystal spoke to him again this time with a more sinister edge on her voice, “tell me you love me again.”
“I love you and I've always loved you.” He said.
She stopped. Then smiling once again wrapped her hooves around him. This time however it felt different, it felt fake, unreal. It felt like a dream. Suddenly the color began to fade from the room, and even from Crystal her once golden coat that had shimmered in the sunlight grew flat and lifeless. Blaze again became aware of a dull pain in his side and his mind began to focus.
“This isn’t real” he said aloud. He pulled away from Crystal’s embrace
“What are you talking about sweetheart?” Crystal responded “Of course its real.”
“This isn’t real” He repeated the memories of what happened rushing back to him all at once.
He remembered everything, the fight, the storm, Spitfyre missing, flying, and her. He remembered seeing Crystal’s broken body beneath the tree. The pain in his side became intense. Blaze’s eyes became wet, and the color drained from his face. “This isn’t real because you're.......” He couldn’t say it. The words wouldn’t come to him.
“Dead?” she finished for him. “No Blaze i moved on, and I’ve come to get you so we can go together.” She said, her voice sweet and thick like honey.
“But what about Spitfyre?” He said worried . “What about our daughter, Crystal?”
“It’s out of our hooves now Blaze. Now come with me. We can be together forever. You won’t ever have to worry about pain again. You can FLY again Blaze don’t you want that?” She said holding her hoof out for him.
Fly? Blaze thought. It was once the thing he thought gave his life meaning, what he lived for. I could fly again. He reached out for her hoof. and then stopped. He thought of something new. An image appeared in front of him. He saw a bright yellow filly staring up at him. He looked at her. Their eyes met and Blaze knew what he had to do.
Blaze turned and took off towards to doorway leading out. The pain returned to him in full force and Blaze collapsed.
“Come back, Blaze! I can make the pain end!”
He heard the illusion of his wife call. Blaze staggered back to his hooves and headed to the door. It seemed to be impossibly far away stretching down an endless corridor. Blaze grit his teeth, every step was one step closer. In his head echoed his wife’s words,
“DAMMIT BLAZE YOU AREN’T A WONDERBOLT ANYMORE!”
“I HATE YOU!” screeched the illusion, “HATE! YOU!”
Blaze felt teardrops roll down his face. It’s not real, it’s not real. He told himself, but it sure as hell still feels real. Every step was filled with writhing, agonizing pain that would have long since crippled any normal pony, but still Blaze continued. Every step was another knife in his side; another reason to give up and turn back. Still he continued. If he couldn’t fly then he would run, If he couldn’t run then he would walk, and dammit, if he couldn’t walk then he would crawl. There was a Fyre in his heart, and that's all that mattered . When he reached the door he was blind from pain. He tasted blood in his mouth and felt the stickiness of blood on his hooves. Slowly, ever so slowly, he pushed the door open. Light poured from the opening As light enveloped his body Blaze could have sworn he heard a new voice, one that broken and full of sadness
Can’t Start a Fyre Without a Spark pt. 3
“So alone.” She whispered one more time as the wind and rain began to subside. The vile black storm clouds had finally begun to break apart revealing the deep, majestic blue of the night sky. The radiant moon was high in the sky like a silent sentinel keeping watch over world. Every blade of grass and every leaf of every tree was dotted with drops of rain that mirrored the moonlight, causing every surface to appear as if it was covered in thousands of tiny crystals. ‘Why does everything have to be so pretty,’ Spitfyre wondered in her grief ‘Its not fair.’ She knew that she couldn’t stay with her parents anymore, and that it was time to leave
Spitfyre was beyond exhausted it took every ounce of her strength just to stand. She couldn’t even bare to look at her mother again, let alone say goodbye. The sight of her made her stomach churn and her eyes burn with tears. The best she could manage was a raspy “I love you.” She looked down at her father, who had given his life only to see his wife die and his daughter abandoned. A single teardrop rolled down her cheek and ran down to the end of her muzzle, falling gently onto her beloved father’s face. Spitfyre, in the deepest depths of her mind, hoped that she would see his eyes flutter open and see him to spring back to life. But no such thing happened, as Blaze remained unmoving in the mud. Spitfyre shuddered, forcing back tears as she bent low and kissed him on the forehead, and whispered into his ear.
“No matter what, I still love you.”
Blaze had to shield his eyes from the intense light. The first thing he noticed was the pain he had felt earlier was completely gone. ‘Bad sign’. It took several moments but eventually his eyes grew accustom enough to where he could at least make out the shape of some kind of pony. He called out to it in hopes to find out something.
The spectral pony was silent and shook it’s head no.
“Am I...dead?” Blaze said with pained words.
The pony again remained silent and only nodded its head no once more.
“If you aren’t Celestia then who--,” Blaze was cut short by a sudden flare of light that caused him to double over in pain. Inside his head he heard a sweet and airy voice began to speak.
“I am something special,” the voice said, “for you see, many old tales tell of the power of friendship and how it can do miraculous things, but there are tales older still that speak of a different kind of magic. There is another deeper stronger power than that of friendship. It is the power of love. For you see Blaze, I am Love.”
Blaze was awestruck as the shimmering pony came fully into his view. Her coat was a pure, snowy white with a glittering white mane that flowed like silk. Her eyes were bright and shone full of life, emanating a light that caused him to cringe and shrink back from its harshness.
The voice inside his head continued “I am the manifestation of this ancient and powerful magic that was called upon when you committed the ultimate selfless act and sacrificed yourself in an attempt to save your daughter.”
Blaze scoffed. “Save her from what? Crystal was the one who saved Spitfyre from the tree...not me. All I did was watch as my wife died and my only kid was left alone... a whole lot of good I did there.”
Love smiled and replied, “It doesn’t matter, you did whatever it took to ensure that your daughter was safe. Even in the face of death you fought for your daughter so that she wouldn’t grow up alone. That, Blaze, is true love. Now... take my hoof.”
Blaze looked dubiously at the offered hoof, remembering what had happened before. “If you’re so powerful then bring my wife back, not me. She was the one who saved Spitfyre.”
Love’s face changed to a pained look and it took a long time to reply. When it finally said something it’s voice was full of sorrow.
“I can’t Blaze, you see in order for my magic to work there has to be a strong bond between both ponies. The love between Crystal and Spitfyre was great to be certain, but its just not enough. Spitfyre loves you more than anything in all of Equestria and deep down so do you. I’m sorry it has to be this way, Blaze, I truly am. But we are running short on time, if we wait any longer you will be well and truly dead. This is your last chance. Take my hoof.”
Blaze took one last look at the hoof and said, “This is going to hurt like hell isn’t it?”
Love smiled, responding, “Ever heard of tough love?”
As Blaze grabbed Love’s hoof, light began to pour into his body. Slowly the smiling pony began to fade away, and all the pain he had felt before came rushing back to him. He felt like he would collapse, but Love gave him strength. Love kept him standing tall, and Love kept him going. A great voice boomed in his head
“ALWAYS LOVE HER!”
Then, once again, Blaze was consumed by darkness.
Blaze awoke with a gasp as air filled his lungs. The cold mud had soaked through his coat leaving him stiff and chilled to the bone. He tried moving just the slightest bit. By Celestia he hurt. Every inch of every muscle and bone in his body ached with exhaustion, but he was alive. Welcome back, Blaze, he thought to himself. He tried to stand, but all he could manage was to configure himself into an awkward sitting position. He immediately scanned his surroundings for Spitfyre. As soon as he laid eyes on his wife he regretted it. He turned away in horror, he felt light-headed, and his stomach rolled. He remembered her final words to him.
“I HATE YOU!” she had screamed at him. He felt hot tears well up in eyes but he blinked them away. Spitfyre first. He tried calling out to her but when he opened his mouth but no sound came out. He was experiencing an odd sense of déjà vu.
Spitfire was missing again, panic began rising inside him. What if something else happened.... What if I’m too late... What-if.......
He squinted his eyes aided by the moonlight. With each passing moment his heart sank he had just about given up when he noticed the limping form of a bright yellow filly; all the aches and pains he had felt meant nothing anymore. It was replaced by pure elation. He staggered, unsure, to his feet and when he felt steady enough and started out after his daughter. However he hesitated for a moment. Blaze turned to his wife. He couldn't think of anything wise, loving, or kind to say to her. He limped over to Crystal, her final words to him echoing in his head. He fought against the urge to back away to simply leave and do nothing. He ground his teeth forcing himself to remain composed. he bent over and nuzzled her cheek. “I’ll make this right,” he finally breathed. “I swear it.” he took a deep breath and kissed her on the muzzle. Blaze got up took one last look at his wife and with a heavy heart again took off after Spitfyre.
It was slow going at first; his wobbly legs wouldn’t go where he tried to place them, but after a while he managed to get down a walk, and pretty soon a brisk trot, and then a full on gallop. The sheer joy of living and the simple pleasure of being alive had finally hit him. His heart didn’t feel so heavy and his mind not so burdened. He had a second chance, he was going to live and Spitfyre was going to live. The sensation he felt at that moment was better than flying, a hundred times better than flying. He was going to see his daughter grow up. Blaze could barely contain himself. He closed in so quickly that the poor yellow filly never saw it coming.
It had been hard for Spitfyre to say goodbye to her family. Her eyes were puffy and swollen from the crying and every step was filled with pain and grief. She didn’t know where she would go. Perhaps some nice pony will take me i- Her thoughts were interrupted suddenly when she felt herself lifted off the ground by some mysterious force, and she felt somepony’s hooves tighten around her. At first she was terrified that somepony was trying to filly-nap her, but she turned around to face this “mysterious force” only to see the beaming face of her father. She opened her mouth in shock to say something, but she gave up. Blaze just squeezed her harder. Finally she managed to squeak out from her father’s crushing hug
“Daddy, why did you leave me?”
Blaze looked at her with a sad smile his eyes wet with tears of joy. “I'm so sorry. So sorry...” Blaze could no longer hold himself together tears rolled freely down his face as he embraced his daughter “I’m never leaving you again” he said at last when he managed to steam the flow of joyful tears.
That was all she needed to hear. She gave him a huge hug in return. They stood there for a long time not saying anything just being glad that the other was alive. Eventually Spitfyre got up the courage to ask her “real question.”
“Dad, what about Mom...” she said in a broken voice. At the mention of her mother, her eyes began to fill with tears. Blaze saw this and gently wiped away the tears with his hoof.
“Look, sweetheart, you gotta be strong. What your mother did for you was her doing and it wasn’t your fault. sometimes you just have to grow up, and face what life gives you. It’s not always pretty, and It’s not always fair, but you have to be strong. It’s what she would want. It’s what I want for you. So no more tears alright?”
Spitfyre looked at her father’s face for reassurance. She swallowed her tears and put on a brave face.
“No more tears. I promise.” she said, trying to sound bold.
“One more thing.” Blaze said as reached up to his disheveled mane and pulled off his old flight goggles. “If you’re going to be a grown-up pony then you’re going to need these.”
Spitfyre felt the weight of the goggles on her head. They were far to big for her tiny head and immediately slipped down around her neck. She felt herself getting choked up but quickly crushed the thought of crying. No more tears. She made a pact with her father, and the the moon and all of the stars were all witness. I WILL be a strong pony.
That night, the two battered ponies walked home side-by side. Spitfyre’s goggles swung low on her neck. Blaze had offered to carry her home, but she refused. She walked differently now; she held her head high. Her eyes were no longer wet. Instead the tears had been replaced by fire, the will and determination to do more than just live, and she knew that tonight wasn’t the end. It was just the beginning.