Friendship is Forever
Spike stood rigid, at attention in front of many ponies in rebel outfits. His stare pierced through the air like a bullet. He would never forget the events leading up to this moment, the receiving of his purple pony badge for his recognition of his services in the Rebel Army. Almost everyone he knew was either dead or missing in action or some other strange complication.
The war had broken out when he was only 5 in pony years. Which in dragon years would make him about 20. A new prince had taken over, Sola, and declared war on all inferior ponies within Equestria, in an attempt to “cleanse the land”. Shortly after, most of the ponies in Ponyville and all around Equestria took up arms, and started the P. U. R. F., the ponies united rebellion front. He would never forget his first night experiencing battle. The sound of bombs dropping, that high pitched whistle. The screams of ponies in incredibly agonizing pain filled his ears. Their screams were so loud that they hurt Spike just hearing them.
Spike could remember clearly the events that took place up to Commander Twilight’s death. They were on a simple mission, to check out a rebel occupied city. They were in a convoy; Twilight in the head car and Spike was in the truck in the back, with a few heavy MG cars in the center. Spike was commissioned into the 45th demolitions crew and was moving with the 12th rebel infantry company. Spike felt like he had been in the car forever. They had been in the same crew for roughly 6 months. Spike was just reminiscing of when they had a 4th, younger dragon in the crew, Chops, when suddenly he heard two loud explosions. Both of the MG trucks had exploded in a fiery mess and shrapnel covered the windshield of Spike’s truck. The convoy came to a halt. Yelling came from in the distance and the next thing Spike knew, his mouth was full the taste of blood and felt an intense pounding in his brain. He crawled out of the burning wreckage and scanned the area for enemy ponies. None. He quickly retreated to the forests around the convoy. He had a bad burn on his stomach, the only soft part of his body. Spike had no way to heal his wounds except through time. Luckily, he wasn’t that badly hurt except for the burn, which he was able to bear. He couldn’t say so for his other crewmates. His memory was hazy, but he remembered crawling out of the car and seeing their bodies, motionless. He tried to get up and walk back to camp, which wasn’t for miles. He collapsed under a tree and fell asleep quickly. He woke up early in the morning, when the sky was still dark. He was sweating profusely from a nightmare. It was about earlier today; the Equestrian Royal Army had captured Twilight. He ran back as fast as he could with his wounds, which healed fast. Spike knew that dragons healed fast, but this was a stretch. The wreckage was still burning brightly. He walked slowly over to the front car, or what was left of it. He looked inside, and didn’t want to look, but kept looking into the cabin. Twilight’s body was mangled and raw from the fire. He crawled in and removed her hot lifeless body. He put out the last few flames on her body, and begun burying her. He then began the walk to the rebel city.
A tear formed in his eye. It seemed like ages ago this happened, however it had only been about a month or so. He was admitted to a military hospital and within a month he was out again. He was called to the podium and given his medal. The medal had meant nothing to him. He only cared for his friends. Or what was left of them. Spike decided to go and find out the fate of his friends from the peaceful Equestria he once knew. One person he believed he was alive was Ditzy. She had been court marshaled for leading an entire squad to their deaths and was promptly discharged. First he would have to locate her.
Spike promptly checked the P.U.R.F. database for any pony matching the description Grey, Pegasus, and named Ditzy. Records described her last known home in the Central District of Cloudsdale. And that was where Spike was headed next. First he would have to get some rest. He sincerely wanted to go home, and see all of his friends smiling faces again. He especially wanted to see Twilight’s face. He packed his duffel bag and set off.
He got strange looks when he landed at the Pony Port. He was a dragon but that wasn’t the part they were staring at. They were staring at his uniform. He tried to avoid their stares, like missiles seeking their target, but couldn’t dodge them. They followed him. Even when he took off, tears in his eyes, towards Ponyville. All he wanted was to see his friends.
He walked down Cottage road, past Fluttershy’s house. The lights were off, and it seemed abandoned. The house seemed almost lifeless however it had become home to many animals. It seemed like a tribute to Fluttershy and all she stood for. Spike strolled past Apple Farms. He walked in. He tried to remember the smell of all Apple related accessories, the sound of Big Mac’s “Eyup”, the sound of Applejacks hooves hard at work but it had been so long hearing only explosions and gunshots that the sounds he loved so much had disappeared. He longed to see AJ but the only thing he saw was Granny Smith’s grave. Spike picked some apples and carefully placed them on Granny’s grave. Spike tried to hide his tears from someone, anyone. But as he walked out, the tears just flowed.
He strolled past Sugar Cube corner and swore he heard Pinkie singing and smelled sweets. He wanted to run in, and gobble down all the cupcakes that Pinkie had just freshly baked. If there were any sweets, or any Pinkie. He had heard she went crazy, but to what extent? Spike didn’t even want to see if Pinkie was in there. It would bring back too many painful memories.
Finally he reached the Library where he and Twilight had stayed many years ago. He pulled out the key. It was shaped like a star. Tears started to well up, but he suppressed them. “Not again” he thought. The door opened with a creak, and the smell of old paper and dust filled his nostrils. There were the tears again. Except these just flowed and flowed. There was no way to switch them off. Spike dropped his bag and ran up to where his Blanket would be. Even though it was all too small, he curled up into a ball and cried himself to sleep.
Spike woke up with a jolt. He dreamt of Twilight again. This time He, Twilight and Rarity were hanging out together on the hill. He had to go see what remained of Rarity’s house. He ran over there, not sure what to find. Her house was open. Spike strolled inside and looked around. He called out Rarity’s name, but was answered only by loneliness. Opal came through the door, sleepy from lying on the old dusty pile of cloth. He went outside, and sealed Rarity’s door shut with a quick weld from his fire breath.
He decided he would leave town as soon as possible on the way back to the Library. This time, he definitely heard Pinkie Pie from inside Sugar Cube Corner. Spike walked briskly inside and peeked around. He called out “Pinkie?” He heard the singing stop; an oven shut and a window open all in a single moment. He went towards where he heard the sound. It came from the kitchen. Spike looked out the window and saw a cloaked figure running into the Everfree Forest. Spike recognized just as the figure disappeared, Pinkies Tail. She was still alive! But why was she running from Spike? Weren’t they friends? He peeked in the oven. Cupcakes. Spike snatched them up and they were still burning hot. He didn’t care. He just wanted to go back to the past.
After he gathered up his stuff and checked the rest of his friends’ house’s excluding Rainbow Dash’s, he made his way for Cloudsdale. He arrived at the launch pad and after an uneventful day of walking, he took off for the Central District of Cloudsdale.
He landed and went into a phone booth. He quickly looked in the directory for a Doo, Ditzy. 40 Pegacorn Street. He flew briskly, because he wanted to know the fate of his friends if Ditzy could deliver in any way. Was Ditzy even dependable? She had killed an entire squad. Spike arrived in good time, and rang the doorbell with haste. He had second thoughts on Ditzy Doo. What if it turned out that all the rumors of her being… stupid were true? He had hoped not. The door opened. “Hello? Who are you?” came a voice from behind the rather large door. “I am Private Second class Demolitions crew Spike, and I need to speak with you.” “If it’s about the rebel army then I don’t wanna hear it. I didn’t kill those troopers if that’s what you want” Ditzy said with a slight annoyance. “Its not about you. Its what you can do for me. I need to know if you have access to the rebel databases.” Said Spike. “I actually do. People say that I’m stupid, when they can’t even prevent a discharged rebel from accessing their data. Please, come in.” The door finally opened and spike walked in. He could barely fit, as the door was meant to be used for pegasi but he managed to squeeze through with minimal damage to the door. Ditzy’s house was decorated with exquisite paintings of Ponies, and also of war scenes. “Here, please sit down and tell me your story.” Ditzy requested. She pushed a cup of tea towards Spike and he sipped slowly as he told his tale and what he wanted from Ditzy.
After Spikes riveting tale of bravery and war, Ditzy showed Spike to her computer. “This is where I do all my work” Ditzy stated. They immediately went to work discovering the last known location of all of Spikes friends. This included Rarity, Applejack, Fluttershy, Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, Big Macintosh, and Applebloom. First he had to know where his beloved Rarity had gone. The screen said it frankly: Rarity Affiliation: Equestrian Royal Army, Occupation: Spy. It broke his heart to know that Spike had loved a traitor. He felt incredibly heart broken and faint but managed to stay conscious long enough to see the results of his next acquaintance, Fluttershy. It said she was currently in a Rebel Mental Hospital. The thought of Fluttershy going into shell shock didn’t particularly surprise Spike. He figured that Fluttershy would never last. He planned to go and try and visit her, or what was left of her shattered mind. “On to the next one” said Spike. Applejack, status: deceased. KIA. Here came back that faint feeling of loneliness. That same feeling when he realized that Twilight was killed. A voice brought him back to reality- “Spike? Spike? Are you alright?” came from the darkness. “Twilight?” said a delirious Spike “No its me, Ditzy. Lets get on to the next one, shall we?” “How long was I out,” asked Spike. Ditzy responded, “You collapsed for a second and then here we are now.” Ditzy brought up the next page, Rainbow Dash. Rainbow Dash, status: Unknown. Unknown? What could that mean? Was she still alive? That would have to wait, Spike decided. Ditzy pulled up Pinkie Pie’s page. He was most curious to see her whereabouts, after that strange encounter with the Pinkie look alike. Pinkie Pie, status, AWOL. That meant that she could still be alive! But that wouldn’t explain why she ran away from Spike. “Can you get a more in depth description?” Spike requested “Sure thing” Ditzy replied. “I don’t understand very well why people think I’m stupid. I mean, the army wasn’t even able to disable a simple account. It says that Pinkie Pie was supposed to be put in jail for murder of a superior officer, but then went AWOL and disappeared.” That meant that the person Spike saw was probably Pinkie. Next on the list was The Cutie Mark Crusaders. Last time Spike heard from his friend Applebloom, Sweetiebell, Scootaloo and her were being sent on a reconnaissance mission. Applebloom, status: Captured. She must’ve been caught when on the mission. Which meant that Scootaloo and Sweetiebell were probably there too. “Ditzy, can you check on the last transmission involving the three?” “Yeah Spike, hold on. Here it is.” She switched on the volume, and static filled Spikes ears. Then after a while he heard that signature “eyup” of Big Mac followed by what Spike thought was a negotiator from the Royal Army. Which meant that Big Mac had something to do with his younger sister and the rescue mission. “Quickly Ditzy, can you look up Big Mac’s page please?” Spike said hastily. “Yeah. And thanks for saying please.” Big Macintosh, Status: Deceased. “Can you look up his cause of death?” The screen flashed for a moment then a file popped up on screen, describing the events of The Crusaders’ mission, the transmission received from the Equestrian Royal Army’s Negotiators, regarding the capture of the 3 fillies’, and the rescue mission involving Big Mac, and Big Mac’s death on the field.
Mac sat down in the truck, his heavy Kevlar jacket pressed against his chest. He shifted gently as the truck rounded each turn. Even though on the outside he was calm like always, this mission was personal. He would do anything to get Applebloom back. He couldn’t lose his last family by blood. Applejack had only been killed in the battle of Dairytown only a few weeks ago. And with Applebloom gone, he would be all-alone in this war-scarred land. They arrived at the mission start zone in what seemed like no time at all. This was it. The rest of life depended on the success of this mission. Mac went to the back of his truck and loaded up his gear. He grabbed his Minigun and backup pistol and ammo. Big Mac and his troop ran through the forest towards the encampment where Applebloom was being held. Mac held up the rear, with a friend and commanding officer, Starshine at the front. A bullet whizzed past and hit the dirt near one of the fillies in their squad. “CONTACT!” yelled Big Mac. They ran to cover behind trees. Big Mac switched off the safety on his Pistol and Minigun and charged forward towards the base. He was like a tractor, mowing through the high grass and mowing down enemy infantry. He heard his CO yelling at him to get back, but he couldn’t hear over the sound of his heartbeat and the repeating beat of his Minigun firing 30 mm bullets. Suddenly, Big Mac felt a pain in his left hoof. Big Mac collapsed and felt the hot dirt stick to his sweaty face. It became increasingly harder to breathe. He ripped off his Kevlar, stood back up with incredible difficulty and continued to press forward. He fired without caring. Even after his Minigun clip was emptied, he continued to hold down the trigger. Finally he ran out of energy and collapsed once again. Another shot, except this time into his stomach. The gun firing around him stopped and a voice came from beside him “HANG ON MAC! ITS GONNA BE ALRIGHT!” yelled out the squad medic. “…No… I… cant…” Mac managed to squeeze out one sentence. “What? What are you saying Mac?” No response. “Mac? Goddammit I think we lost Mac.” Dead silence filled the forest and base. Somewhere in that facility made of strengthened metal, Applebloom awaited her brother and her sister to come and rescue her.
“I think I’m going to cry again,” muttered Spike while holding back tears. Ditzy was already crying her eyes out. After such a long day of these terrible feelings, Spike retreated to the couch and fell asleep almost immediately. He woke up with a jolt, again. He couldn’t remember anything about the dream except the sound of gunfire all around him. He smelled burnt gunpowder but then the smell gave way to home made waffles. He walked into the kitchen and sat down. He wished life could be like this forever. Living simply with a friend, eating waffles for breakfast, and having fun all day, without a care in the world.