Spike the dragon lounged in a nearly pony sized basket next to Twilight Sparkle's desk in the office shared by several of Canterlot U's junior faculty and student teachers, seemingly flipping lazily through an advanced and esoteric tome of magical theory.
In truth, he was perusing the four color panels of the latest issue of Thunderpony tucked neatly into the pages of the larger book. He'd picked up a lot in his years as the lavender unicorn's assistant, and knew how to choose books to get the best startled double takes from any students or faculty who happened to pass by.
His stomach rumbled a bit, and he glanced at the somnolently ticking grandfather clock that stood by the door, noticing that Princess Celestia's beaming portrait on the dial had been replaced by Princess Luna's shyly smiling visage.
As the comic book he read wrapped up on a cliffhanger, he began to mutter petulantly under his breath. "Is this it for our hero? Will Thunderdragon ever... eat... again... Will the nefarious Not A Doctor Yet Twilight Von Sparkle triumph in her sinister scheme to starve him to death?" He snorted to himself and idly turned his attention to the letters column and novelty ads in the back pages.
The spines over his ear holes twitched at the sound of galloping hooves in the hallway outside. With a blase expression he looked up to see Twilight Sparkle attempt screech to a halt on the highly polished marble floor, only to keep sliding on past, her eyes wide in alarm as she began to spin with her hooves splayed wider and wider beneath her. He lowered his gaze back down to an advertisement depicting a smiling family of pink, scaly Seaponies as a softly echoing whoop and a crash sounded from down the hall.
He looked up again sharply as another pony hove into view in the doorway and called after her in a melodious voice he instantly recognized. There was the alabaster white and pastel pink and purple figure of his childhood crush's younger sister, standing with her green eyes wide with alarm and a hoof to her mouth. "Oh! Miss Twilight are you okay?"
Spike raised a scaly brow ridge. "Sweetie Belle? What are you doing here!"
The young unicorn's innocent as a button face turned toward him, startled. She began to look rapidly back and forth at him and down the hall while hopping on her hooves in a frantic tempo. "Having a foal!"
A small gout of green flame popped unbidden from his throat as he reared up in his basket, tossing the heavy tome aside with a thud. "WHAT?"
Twilight came hurriedly limping into view, her cravat, mane, and tail in disarray. "Fluttershy is having her foal! Right now!"
At this Spike surged to his clawed feet and tumbled out of the basket, scrabbling a moment to get upright, where he looked his guardian in the eyes and laid his hands on her shoulders. "Holey Guacamole! What are we waiting for? Lets go see if we can get a chariot!"
The lavender unicorn gently shouldered him aside as she stepped up to her desk and began to root through the drawers. She pulled a couple of pages of foolscap and an ink bottle and quill out and floated them over to him. "First things first. I need you to send a couple of quick notes off."
The young dragon took the writing implements and nodded, breathing deeply to both calm himself and stoke his internal fires. "Right. The Princess..." He started writing "Dear Princess Celestia..."
He stopped scribbling as his guardian interjected. "Hold it! Yes, I want you to send one to the Princess. Both of them. And then send off a note to the Dean. But first I need you to send one to Rainbow Dash."
She grunted in satisfaction as she tugged a colorful mailer out from under a stack of books, featuring a familiar squad of blue and yellow suited pegasi with a photo inset of a brashly smiling rainbow maned mare. Twilight spread the pamphlet out on a clear spot on the desk with her hooves and peered at it. "She's in... Manehattan! At Madison Mare Gardens tonight. Think you can zero in on her?"
The little dragon puffed out his chest after crossing out the Princess' name on the header. "If I can see 'em in my mind's eye I can drop a scroll right on their head. Rainbow Dash is a no brainer."
Twilight nodded, and proceeded to use her telekinesis to undo her cravat. "Good. All right, I'm on my way. Sweetie Belle, I'm leaving Spike in your care. If you can't get a chariot take any of the morning express balloons. You can use my Royal Transit Pass, it's in the top left drawer of my desk there, and Spike knows where I keep my wallet. Spike, do what Sweetie tells you. Sweetie, listen to what Spike has to say and try to pay attention. I'll meet you both at the Library in Ponyville at lunchtime if I don't see you sooner."
With that she turned and hurried toward a large set of windows framed by potted plants at the end of the row of desks, the western night sky beginning to twinkle over the ruddy glow of the city lights as Princess Luna brought the stars online.
The younger unicorn and dragonet looked at each other in confusion as Spike lifted his quill from the page. "Wait, what? Aren't we taking a chariot together?"
Twilight paused and looked back at them, shaking her head. "That's too slow. Pinkie's "Pinkie Sense" is coming in at full on "doozy". You know what that means. Time is of the essence."
She threw open the windows, climbing up on the sill as a chill mountain wind suddenly blew in, knifing through the stuffy air of the offices and ruffling the leaves on the plants and the papers on the desks. The lavender mare looked over her shoulder. "In fact, you'd better specifically write "doozy" in your letter to Rainbow, and tell her it's at Sweet Apple Acres."
She turned back with a wink. "See you kids in Ponyville!"
She stared out over the ivory towers of Canterlot, looking down the vastness of the valley toward the canopy of clouds gathered over the distant hamlet where she'd found all of her most beloved friends. Closing her eyes, she centered herself, concentrating on the sun blessed apple orchards and sweet scent of hay and earth of a particular farm where she'd spent so many glorious summers. Her brow furrowed as she bunched up her rear legs and crouched in a starter's position on the windowsill.
Sweetie Belle leaned in, speaking to Spike in a silvery whisper as her earnest green eyes grew wide. "Uhhh... She knows she's not a pegasus... right?"
The little dragon's own green eyes narrowed as Twilight's horn began to shimmer and spark. "She's not gonna... oh wow, she is!" He threw up an arm to shield his face. "Don't look directly at..."
Before Spike could finish Twilight Sparkle pushed off from the window and launched herself into the air, her hooves thrown wide as she sailed over the campus so many stories below. Sweetie Belle shrieked in alarm as a sphere of blinding white flared, throwing everything in the office into stark black as rectangular beams of hazy light shot forth between the window frames.
A split second later, all the young unicorn could see was luminous spots dancing before her eyes.
Spike peered over his upraised arm as the primrose colored mare slumped heavily onto her rump beside him. The stars twinkled cheerily over the warm blaze of the sunset in an empty, deep purple sky. He muttered under his breath as he resumed writing on the parchment in his claw.
Sweetie Belle's voice came out in a low vibrato next to him. "S-spike. I can't feel my face..."
The young dragon nodded vaguely. "That'll pass. Do you spell "doozy" with a Y or an IE?"
The characters depicted in this fiction are copyright and trademarks of Hasbro, Inc. This is a work of fan fiction, and the author makes no claim on Hasbro's copyright or trademarks.