“Twilight!” Called out the voice of a worried unicorn, “Twilight, wake up!!”
The little lavender pony awoke upon hearing the screams of her friend. She rose up and started panting, while looking around in all direction, searching for something that was obviously not there.
“Courageous?!” Twilight screamed, “Courageous!!!”
Rarity was confused and tried to calm her friend, “Twilight, what in the name of Celestia are you screaming about?!”
Twilight quickly realized she was no longer dreaming, and the stallion she was embracing had vanished. The sad little pony sat down on the grass and hung her head low. All she could do from that point was try to accept where she was now.
“Twilight…are you sure you are alright?” Rarity asked.
Twilight Sparkle was not sure if she was; after the dream she had, there was really no way to answer, “Yes…I’m, fine,” She lied.
“Are you absolutely sure?” The white unicorn inquired, “I mean look at yourself. You just woke up from a nightmare or something and you are acting very strange. I must say, this is not good for your complexion, my dear Twilight. After all, we girls have to-”
“I said I’m fine!” Twilight snapped, “I’ll…be alright. I just need to…catch my breath.”
Rarity sat down by her friend and gently rubbed her back with her hoof, “I’m sorry, Twilight. Take a moment if you need it.”
Twilight smiled a little, “Thank you, Rarity.”
“Think nothing of it, darling. But if you don’t mind me asking, what were you dreaming about that made you panic like so?”
Twilight turned her eyes toward Rarity and could see she was waiting for an answer. Although this smart little pony knew how dreams worked, she could not explain this one. Twilight shook her head and decided to lie so her friend would not have to worry.
“It was just…a dream, nothing more.” Twilight elaborated, “Dreams are nothing more then what our brains show us when we sleep. After all, I am Celestia’s star student. I learned that lesson years ago.”
Rarity gave a questionable look, to which Twilight smiled nervously. The little white unicorn got up and responded, “If you say so, Twilight.” She conjured a brush to comb her mane, then helped Twilight with hers.
“Well, shall we be off. I am sooooo wanting that spa treatment.”
Twilight nodded and got back on her hooves, “You’re right. Lets get going.”
As the two unicorns resumed their way down the dirt road, Twilight felt bad: she lied to her friend about the dream of Courageous Heart. Even though some time ago she stated that keeping secrets from your friends was not right, she feared Rarity would not believe her on this one; Twilight herself could not explain it.
The little lavender unicorn looked down at her chest and for some reason could still feel the hoof that touched her where her heart was. This brought back the memory of that moment and she blushed a little, “What…is this? Why…do I feel this way…about him?” She asked herself. Twilight knew much about friendship, but this was something she had never experienced before in her life.
“Courageous…” She muttered quietly and continued walking alongside her friend, Rarity.
The road once more seemed endless, even with whatever light either pony could conjure, it gave no help to see further ahead of them. The dark was cruel, and the storms only added hints of fear within them.
“Oh Twilight. Whatever are we to do?” Rarity asked as she complained.
Sighing, the lavender pony responded with the only idea she could think of, “I don’t know, Rarity. I guess keep an eye out for any signs of dragons. The sooner we see one, the closer we may be to their territory.”
Rarity gave Twilight a nod of agreement and started observing the area all around; From the ground level to the skies above. But in the end, all that was before them was the dark and the stormy weather.
Twilight increased her magical spell to light up the surrounding area a bit more. Unfortunately, she saw the same as Rarity: nothing, but road before their eyes. The little pony started to wonder if they would ever reach the Badlands, and also if her friends were having as much trouble with the ones they were searching for.
Suddenly, Rarity stopped and pointed up into the sky, “Twilight! Look!”
Twilight Sparkle looked up towards where her friend was pointing. At first she could see nothing but clouds.
“What am I looking for, Rarity?”
“Right there! Look!”
Twilight looked again, and this time she saw it, “Its…a dragon!”
Rarity nodded and smiled, “We must be near their home now.” She then thought of something, “Should we call that one down? Maybe ask for a ride?”
“What? I dread not to think what will happen if I have to walk another step and ruin my hooves any further,” the prissy pony whined.
Twilight rolled her eyes and lit up her horn more so that the dragon flying above could see them, “Hey!! Down here! Down here!!” She yelled and waved her hoof.
Rarity joined in to help. The two ponies tried their best to get the dragon’s attention before he, or she, would disappear.
“Do you think he sees us, Twilight?”
“I think its more of whether or not he cares if he does.” Twilight corrected.
Suddenly, they saw the dragon flying down towards them, and land a little ways from them.
It was too dark to see what he looked like, but Twilight mustered up her courage to walk up to him and talk. Rarity followed close behind.
“Uhh…hello there,” Twilight greeted, but received no answer.
The dragon was just standing there, hidden by the darkness. Twilight tried again, “Um, we are sorry for entering your home, but we need your help.” There was still no answer.
“Well, somepony is being very rude.” Rarity remarked at the dragon’s behavior.
Twilight had to agree, but then again, dragons are known for their rudeness and greed. She decided to move up closer and add a little more light to her horn in order for both her and Rarity to see the dragon.
But once she did this, they both gasped at to who was standing before them…
“S-S-Spike…?” Twilight muttered with a sad expression on her face and a hurtful feeling in her heart.
“Spikey…Wikey…?” Rarity uttered weakly upon seeing her little dragon in front of her, with an evil look on his face and in his dark eyes.
The mid-sized dragon snorted fire and laughed, “Finally! I have found you, Twilight!”
Twilight could not find any words to say; Her dear friend and assistant was a servant of the Darkness, and feared nothing she could say would save him, “Spike…”
“In the name of Tirek the Supreme, YOU SHALL GO NO FURTHER!!” He roared at the two frightened ponies.
“W-what d-d-d-o we do…T-Twilight?” rarity stuttered in fright.
“We’re…gonna…” without warning, Twilight teleported her and Rarity to the other side of Spike and started galloping away, “…RUUUUUNNN!!”
Spike turned around and roared in anger. He then took flight and chased after them., “You ponies can’t escape me!!”
Both Twilight and Rarity screamed as they ran, hoping somepony would save them, but they were all alone out there; plus they knew they would not get far from the evil dragon.
As they tried to get away, Spike was right behind them, roaring and taunting them. He then inhaled and breathed fire way out in front of them, creating a wall to block them. Twilight and Rarity were now trapped.
“Now, I have you!!” Roared the green and purple dragon.
The two unicorns panicked and had no idea what to do: running was no longer an option, since they could not outrun him. There was only one choice left.
Twilight stepped forward, and with tears in her eyes, lit up her horn with the strongest spell she could think of, “D-don’t…make…m-m-me…do this…S-s-spike!”
“What are you doing, Twilight!?!” Rarity screamed.
Twilight Sparkle was preparing the best incapacitating spell she could think of, but in her heart, she could not bear to do this to her dear little dragon, “Please…stop…”
Spike snorted and laughed wickedly at Twilight’s pleas. He scratched the ground in front of him, getting ready to charge.
“Spike…p-p-ple-e-ase…stop…” Twilight begged as the tears poured out of her eyes.
Rarity ran up to join Twilight, “Spikey…please…we’re your friends. We love you!” She screamed at her beloved dragon.
Spike roared out loud and charged at the two unicorns. Once this happened, Twilight screamed out his name and fired, but not before Rarity pushed her, causing the spell to miss the dragon, “No! Not my Spikey-Wikey!!”
At that moment, the two ponies felt the claws of the dragon grab them. Spike held them both down on the ground and roared at them. He had them where he wanted them.
Twilight and Rarity could not move, and could only stare up at the dragon who was now laughing at how easy it was to defeat them..
“Rarity….” Twilight muttered to her friend.
"Thank you...for stopping me. Even if...it was just a spell to freeze him...I...I didn't want to use it. Not on him..." she cried.
Rarity understood and nodded lightly at her dear friend, but turned her attention to Spike who was gazing down at them both.
“Now…to make both of you little ponies…servants of the Master!!” Spike barked as his dark eyes glowed, preparing to transform them into evil beings like himself.
Twilight and Rarity could not break free of his grasp. They were now helpless to stop him, and did not have the hearts to use spells on him; this was their dearest friend, and they loved him too much to do anything to him.
“Spike…please…please…don’t do this…please!!!” Twilight begged.
“Spikey-Wikey…” Rarity cried his name.
The Darkness inside the dragon was too strong for their words to reach him. Spike was almost ready to cast the dark power into the two ponies.
Twilight, now realizing it was all over, she hugged Spike’s hand and cried, “I love you, Spike. You are my number one assistant…and my dearest friend. Please…come back to me…”
Spike was about to roar, when suddenly…he stopped.
A small, glowing energy was coming from Twilight. It moved onto the dragon’s claw and started to work its way all around him. At first he struggled, but then…he stood still, and accepted it.
“T-T-Twi…light? R-Rar..ity…?” muttered the glowing Spike.
The two unicorns gasped at what they heard: the kind voice of their little dragon. They could then see what was happening: Spike was trying to fight the Darkness within him, and this glowing force of Light was helping him.
“Spike!!…Fight it…!!” Twilight Sparkle yelled.
“Come back to us!! Come back to me!! You’re my little Spikey-Wikey!!” Rarity screamed as loud as she could.
Spike released them both and grabbed his head and roared, trying to fight off the evil that was controlling him.
Rarity and Twilight ran up to him and hugged him as best they could, while calling out to him; letting their voices guide him back to them.
After a brief moment, Spike held his head towards the sky, and roared with green fire shooting out of his mouth. Just then, the dark power that coursed through the dragon escaped from him and disappeared into thin air.
Spike fell onto the ground, weakened by the intense battle between himself and the Darkness.
“Spike!!” yelled both Twilight and Rarity as they continued hugging him as tight as they could, hoping he would be alright.
The dragon, who was bigger then a pony but smaller then an adult dragon, opened his eyes slowly and saw his two dear friends hugging his head, “Twilight…Rarity…I‘m so…sorry…”
“It’s okay, Spike…we’re here…” Twilight whispered to him.
“My little Spikey-Wikey…*sniff*…I missed you so much.” Rarity cried into his scales.
Spike felt so terrible, for all that he had done or almost did. The only thing he could do for both of them was just lay there and let them hug and cry for him. Spike was free of Tirek’s control and was so happy to be reunited with the two ponies he loved the most.
As the tearful Twilight hugged Spike’s head, and while her mind was on him, she took a moment to think on what had happened: What was that glowing light that came from her that helped save Spike? She then remembered:
“You will face many dangers as you continue your quest: those that are your enemies…and your friends. Let this gift I give to you, help you in your time of need.”
Twilight gasped quietly and realized that it was all real: Her dreams, Courageous Heart, and the gift he gave to her. It was the Light he bestowed to her…that saved Spike.
“Thank you…thank you…thank you…” She said over and over in her head, to the one who helped her bring her little dragon back to her