Learning to Forgive
Chapter Four: I’m Sorry
As the morning’s light cast across Spike’s sleeping form, his eyes slowly fluttered open. Instantly, he noticed an odd presence atop his chest. Spike looked down to see Twilight, sleeping peacefully. Now fully awake, he took note of the fact that he wasn’t in his bedroom, but Twilight’s.
Once all conscious thought had returned, Spike found himself processing the events of yesterday. However, many of his thoughts were similar to the tune of “Oh holy crap that wasn’t a dream!”
Suddenly, Spike felt Twilight begin to stir atop him. Spike looked down to her, and saw a reaction similar to his own; though it was quickly replaced by a warm smile. This caused him to return one.
Twilight quickly pressed her lips to his. “Good morning.”
The dragon let out a light chuckle. “Well, some pony is in a good mood.”
Twilight giggled as she slid off of Spike and out of bed. “Considering the fact that yesterday was the best day of my life, why wouldn’t I be?”
Spike playfully rolled his eyes at the, somewhat, cheesy comment. “So, what are your plans for today oh great and powerful Twilight Sparkle.”
This remark earned Spike a glare. “Just because I’m a princess doesn’t mean…” She trailed off upon realizing Spike was only joking, remembering how after her coronation he would often tease her by comparing her to Trixie. “Oh ha ha very funny. I thought you would have forgotten that by now.”
“Oh no, I kept a little book of things that annoy you.”
Twilight rolled her eyes.
Spike smirked at this before asking, once again “But seriously, what were your plans?”
As Twilight levitated a brush through her mane she looked over to Spike, who was now standing beside her. “Well, as long as the Hooviets and Zebricans don’t start lobbing fire spells at each other, I’m free. Why do you ask?”
“I was just thinking, maybe we could go do something. I mean you’re Princess Twilight frigging Sparkle, so we’ve got a few options on the table.”
“So, do you want to see Celestia before or after?”
Spike grinned before kissing Twilight on the cheek and wrapping his arms around her. This caused Twilight to take on a light blush.
“Celestia can wait. You and I, on the other hand, have a bit of lost time to make up for. So, you wanna go on a walk through the Canterlot Gardens? I’m sure the media would just love to see that.”
Twilight laughed softly, however it gradually became an awkward one after she realized that she hadn’t really thought about that. After all, if the media were to know Spike was back in her life, they’d have enough to play with for a week, but if they were to know they were dating… Let’s just say it wouldn’t be fun for her. Then again, she would have to face this eventuality regardless of what she did, so what the hay?
“That sounds great, Spike; minus the last part.”
The young dragon laughed. “Honestly, I don’t really care where we go.”
“Oh, well in that case how about we go to this little spot I found in the woods by Canterlot?”
Spike raised his brow. “The woods? I thought you didn’t like going outside.”
Twilight threw out a hoof. “I may not like spiders and snakes, but I’m perfectly fine with a walk through the forest every now and again. So, what do you say?”
He smiled. “It sounds perfect.”
The Alicorn returned one. “Okay, I’ll have a guard ready a chariot.”
Twilight stepped out of the chariot and took in a deep breath of clean air. She had always loved the smell of the forest. Though, she also wished to be alone, so she turned to the guard.
“Okay, that will be all, and don’t come back for two hours.”
The Royal Guard nodded, his expression unwavering. “Yes mam,” with that the stallion launched into the air, chariot and all.
“Now, I know you said you didn’t want anything special,” began Spike, “but I had to throw something together while you were in the shower.” He then revealed the claw behind his back to be wielding a small picnic basket.
Twilight smiled before pecking him on the nose, to show that her next statement was a well-intended joke. “I see you’re already lying to me on our first date. Nice start.”
Spike rolled his eyes. “Oh, come on Twi, what did you expect us to do? Walk around or enjoy a picnic?”
Twilight grinned to Spike as she lifted up a branch. “I expect you to follow me.”
After a couple minutes of walking and after brushing off a third spider web, he was beginning to wonder if Twilight’s secret place was worth it.
“How much further is this spot of yours, Twi?”
“Just a little further,” she called over her shoulder.
Considering the fact that she had falsely assured him of this fact at least twice now, Spike decided it would be best to verify what exactly she meant by “a little further”.
“Uh, by that do you mean a mile or just a few more feet, because you said-“
“We’re here!” announced Twilight, effectively cutting off Spike.
Spike was almost about to question this claim before the Alicorn lifted a branch to reveal a beautiful display. Before the couple was a small meadow, next to which the beginning of the Canterlot River flowed, though here it appeared to be nothing more than a large stream. But what really took Spike’s breath away was the view beyond it; from the far side of the mountain, one could see fields and forest that seemed to stretch on forever.
Shooting Spike a quick smirk, Twilight asked “Worth it?”
Spike, who was still perplexed by the sight, nodded. “Worth it.”
Once Spike had set out the blanket beside the riverbank, he took a seat and began to open the picnic basket. He dearly hoped Twilight’s new high class status wouldn’t have affected her taste in food.
“So, what did you bring?” asked Twilight, now leaning against Spike’s side.
“Well,” he began as he emptied the basket, “I only had enough time for daisy sandwiches, but I tried to make it exactly the way you used to like it. I hope that’s okay with you.”
Twilight smiled. “Of course it is, Spike. Honestly, I’m getting quite disgusted with what they’re feeding the royals these days. They actually tried to make me eat fish eggs once. Fish eggs!”
Spike chuckled. “Oh no, Poor you.”
Twilight chuckled as well, but her expression went serious for the question she was to ask.
“Spike, what was it like?”
He shot her a confused expression.
“Living on your own I mean,” she clarified.
The dragon leaned back momentarily, thinking about how this could be best put.
“Well, at first things were rough, but then once I got to Staliongrad and got a job, things started getting better. Even had my own apartment, of course living on the salary of a new coal miner didn’t get me far, even with the Hooviet welfare.”
Twilight’s eyes widened. “You were a coal miner?”
“Yeah, I know, hard to believe. But it wasn’t all that bad. You see this friend of mine, Sergey, who worked in the gem mine nearby, would always give me some.”
Twilight looked away from Spike, as a realization dawned on her. ‘Did he really hate me so much he’d go through all that?’
The dragon took a bite of some emerald he had packed, and looked over to see Twilight averting her gaze.
“Hey, are you okay?”
Twilight put on a forced, faked, smile. “Yeah, I’m fine.”
Spike easily saw through her deception. “Twi, I’ve known you long enough to know when you’re lying, what’s wrong?”
She considered assuring him once again, but she knew he was right. “D-Did you do all of this because of what I said?”
Spike was instantly caught off guard by this. “I’m going to be honest. At first I was, but eventually I just started going through the motions like every pony else.”
This reply only caused Twilight’s heart to sink even lower. Then suddenly, she felt a gentle hand upon her chin, turn her towards Spike.
“But every single day all I could think about was you; how much I missed you, how much I cared about you, how I could never go back, and how much you hated me.”
Twilight rested a hoof atop her draconic friend’s claw. “I never hated you; nothing could ever make me hate you… Really, I think that I’ve always loved you in some way. Even when we were little, back in Canterlot, I always thought of you as number one in everything, not just as my assistant, but as a friend and as the one I cared about most. Even Shining Armor was second to you. And that has never changed.”
Spike was astounded by this. He never knew just how much Twilight had cared for him, and now that he did, he felt absolutely horrible for leaving her. Now he was determined to make good on all of his wrongs, starting now.
Suddenly, Spike leaned forward and pressed his lips to Twilight’s. He knew this wouldn’t undo all of the pain he’d caused her, but it was indeed a good start.
After a moment, Spike broke the kiss, but replaced it with an embrace. “Twilight, I promise that I’ll never leave you again.”
The Alicorn smiled, her eyes wet with tears. “Thank you. That means a lot to me; especially now.”
Quickly, he planted a kiss upon her forehead. “I love you.”
Twilight felt a few tears of joy break lose as her smile grew. “I love you too.”
After a few hours, the Royal guard returned and brought the pair back to Canterlot. Though after the moment they shared, the two weren’t able to look at each other the same way again. For in that moment, something became clear to them, they weren’t just best friends, not even lovers, they were soul mates. Though for one particular dragon, this may have taken root far longer ago than the other could have imagined.
As Twilight set hoof in Canterlot, she was surprised to see Spike taking her hoof as she exited the carriage. She smiled at him with a light blush, and allowed him to be a gentleman.
“Why thank you my good sir,” she joked.
Spike let out a light laugh. “Of course milady.”
Breaking character, Twilight asked “Are you ready to see Celestia yet?”
“In a minute, but right now you should follow me.”
The Alicorn raised her brow. “Why?”
“Just do it. You’ll see.”
After a short walk to the Canterlot Garden, Spike brought Twilight over to a tree they used to play under as foals. Twilight remembered it especially, for when she would find herself thinking of Spike, she’d make her way out here and just read.
“Were you trying to show us our special tree?” she asked.
Spike smiled and shook his head. He then crouched down at the base of the tree and examined it closely, before he began to dig.
“Um Spike, what are you doing?”
“Well, when you were talking about us being little, you made me remember something.”
Suddenly, a metallic scrape emanated from the ground. “Aha! Got it!” he declared, as he pulled out a small lunch box.
Twilight, who was now standing at Spike’s side, peered down over his shoulder. “What’s that?”
He smiled. “Something I should have gave you a long time ago.”
With a bit of force, Spike jerked the lunch box open until the rusty hinges gave way. Inside he found several drawings of him and Twilight, as well as the box of crayons he used to color them.
At first Twilight just assumed that they were simply drawings from their younger days, but then she noticed something odd; on each of them was a heart, sometimes around the both of them or, on others, one half lavender the other half green.
“Here,” he said as he offered up the papers.
Twilight levitated the parchments out of his claw and began flipping through each of them. In total, there were five pages, each one a year older than the last.
By now she was in total awe at the drawings, for it was clear what they were; they were Hearts and Hooves Day cards. “Spike, this is… Are these…”
Spike laughed slightly. “Yeah, I kinda thought it would be okay to show you these now.”
Twilight looked to him, her eyes wet with un-fallen tears. “You mean you’ve made these for me all those years ago?”
“Yeah, but every year I’d chicken out, and it’d end up here. I hope you don’t think that’s weird, do you?”
“No, not at all. I just can’t believe that all this time… Thank you.”
Spike smiled. “It’s nothing really. I mean I almost forgot that they were-“
The dragon was suddenly cut off by Twilight wrapping her hooves around him in one of the tightest embraces he’s ever been in. “This is the sweetest gift I’ve ever received. Thank you.” Just then, Twilight leaned back just enough for the two to make eye contact, before their lips met.
Just then, a royal pony decided to make their presence known. “Spike!?”