The 1st Hearth's Warming Eve of Ford Mustang

by RoyalRainbow

Chapter 1: The 1st Hearth's Warming Eve of Ford Mustang

The 1st Hearth’s Warming Eve of Ford Mustang

Ahh… Christmastime! Well… the equivalent of Christmastime to say the least. Which in this case is Hearth’s-Warming-Eve-Time here in Equestria.

It’s been several months since my mysterious arrival in Ponyville, and to my surprise, my luck has changed for the better. Far more so than what I could have ever expected. To sum it all up, I’m in a steady relationship with Rainbow Dash! Yeah, who would think that as a fan of a cartoon show that the actual universe is coincidentally based off of, I would end up as her coltfriend! Sure, I still don't have a Cutie Mark, but that doesn't bother me much anymore since I'm quite content with what talents I have, and Rainbow already accepted for who I am before we started a more serious relationship together. So I’m definitely excited to spend my first Hearth’s Warming Eve with her, especially when she will come back from one of her grand tours as a newly recruited Wonderbolt.

Of course, to make this holiday really special for Rainbow Dash this year, I’m going to need a great gift in mind. But just like with her birthday beforehand, I have a bit of trouble on thinking the right kind of gift for her. So, I decided to ask one of my friends for some ideas in my new hometown, Ponyville. And who better to turn to regarding with this holiday season than the Element of Generosity herself, Rarity.

So here I am: doing some early holiday shopping with Rarity right in the heart of Manehattan.

“Ahh! Another successful purchase from our extravagant shopping spree!” Rarity exclaims with a satisfied smile. “Won’t you agree, Ford?”

“You’re gonna have to be more specific, Rarity.” I respond with an amusing grin. “Because I lost count after the nth item on our list.”

Both of us exit from one of the big city’s famed department stores with our numerous bags in tow. Of course, as a striving gentleman, or in this case, “a gentlecolt”, I insisted on carrying most of our stuff for us. After all, Rarity is the one who is treating me to our weekend trip in Manehattan, including train tickets, meals, and hotel rooms.

“Well then, let’s not dilly-dally any further now.” Rarity suggests in ever-so high spirits as she trots away. “We still got more gifts to pursue and with little time to spare!”

“Lead the way, Rarity.”

As I follow behind her towards our next destination, I take a look around the city once more. Like New York City back on Earth, there are a lot of similarities to be found in Manehattan. Mostly it’s from how jam-packed the wide streets and sidewalks are and the large, vibrant signs and billboards that are scattered across the tall buildings. But when it’s time for the holiday season, Manehattan is even livelier with its countless Hearth’s Warming Eve decorations. Plus, the addition of light snow gives it a nice, appropriate touch to this world’s variation of Christmastime.

“By the way, how are you doing with all of those presents back there?” Rarity asks which snaps me out of my wonderment. “They’re not too much of burden for you, are they?”

“Not at all. In fact, I could practically do this all day long.” I boast mildly in similar fashion to our esteemed Wonderbolt friend.

While Rarity is wearing a very fabulous, thick, winter coat with her saddlebag over it and a stylish, wide-brimmed hat, I'm carrying much heavier bags that are strapped to my sides and are saddled to my back. Though I certainly don’t mind the load; mostly it’s thanks to the results of my private training from my gargantuan, scaly friend, Hindel the All-Seeing Dragon. Despite being a hermit, Hindel has been a good friend to me, who provided me these wonderful, breathing exercises that has strangely enough increased my own strength and endurance in the past few months. Though why he would go to such great lengths for me with these sessions is a complete mystery to me. I'll have to get him something this season as a sign of gratitude... right as soon as he is done with his napping from his hibernation period. Don't want to wake up a grumpy dragon in the middle of winter, that's for sure!

“Well don’t try to push yourself too much for my sake, darling!” The smiling seamstress reminds me sweetly. “Though I truly appreciate all of the help you are providing this weekend.”

“No problem, Rarity. Thanks again for having me tagging along with you in Manehattan. This shopping spree is a good idea to look for our gifts this year.”

“You are quite welcome, Ford. Plus, it’s nice to have some company on a trip like this. Speaking of which, how do you like Manehattan so far? It’s simply breathtaking, isn’t it?!”

“Definitely!” I acknowledge with a nod. “It’s just like Manhattan back on my homeworld.”

“‘Man-hattan’, you say?” she repeats with bewilderment and curiosity. “What a peculiar name for something based off our own fair city.”

“Oh really?” I respond wittily with a raised eyebrow. “Then how come this city is named after one’s own mane?”

“Oh I don’t know, Mustang… why is your ‘Man-hattan’ named after your own species?” she smirks cleverly with an expression mirroring that to my own.

A bit flabbergasted at first, I simply admit in defeat with a chuckling smile, “…Touché.”

Besides my marefriend, Rarity and a handful of our friends in Ponyville are the only ones who aware of my true origins as I am from another world that is completely different from their own. Though I was born as a human being, I somehow took the form of a Pegasus stallion when I was unexpectedly sent to Equestria. At first, I was afraid to reveal my background because on Earth, “My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic” is a fictional, animated counterpart to the actual Equestria that I am residing in right now. The only one who knows about this startling revelation are Rainbow Dash and Twilight Sparkle, but we agreed that it would be best to keep this as our little secret. Nevertheless, they accepted for who I am and never treated me any different from the rest. Still, that didn’t stop them from piquing their curiosity about me and my native world.

“Speaking of which, darling, tell me more about this holiday of yours… what was it called again?”

“What… you mean Christmas?”

“Yes, that’s it!” she confirms with wide-eyed astonishment. “I wish to hear more about this ‘Santa Claus’ fellow!”

“Well… he’s practically a legend of his own, making him an ideal holiday figure since he delivers presents to all the good boys and girls around the world on the night before Christmas!"

"All around the world in one night? My my! This Santa Claus sounds like he can give Rainbow Dash and the rest of the Pegasi a run for their money! How in the world does he accomplish such an amazing feat?" she inquires with constant fascination over this.

"Oh, Santa is said to have his own brand of magic, but most notably, he has a flying sleigh that are pulled by his magical reindeer, eight of them at the very least."

“Ooo! How extraordinary!” she squeals in delight. “And can these reindeer talk like we do?”

Sheepishly, I turn my gaze away from Rarity’s and rub the back of my head as I answer her question hesitantly, “Ehh… they can... depending on which holiday special you watch at least.

“Well then, let’s save the gossip for later, darling. Have you come up with anything for Rainbow Dash yet?”

Upon that reminder, I respond in dismay, “Sigh… no. All these stores we've been through, and I still got nothing on my end!”

“Oh, don’t feel so discourage, Ford.” she reassures me with kindheartedness. “If it helps, I’m in the same dilemma as you are when it comes to my dear, sweet Applejack. How about we brainstorm some ideas together, hmm?”

“Yeah, that sounds good.”

“So, what is that you like Rainbow Dash the most?”

“That’s a rather tricky question to answer, Rarity.” I reply with a soft chuckle. “I think a better question to ask is what don’t I like about her?”

“Then start throwing some ideas that may come to mind.”

“Okay well… there’s her athletic prowess, her charming boastfulness, her unmatched loyalty, her natural ability to inspire others… and then there’s that mane! That gorgeous, wonderful mane of hers!”

I somehow freeze in the midst of my reminiscing on that one particular feature. Even from not seeing Dashie for days now, I can still picture her colorful mane flowing alongside the wind that blows right through it, recall her lovely, natural fragrance, and barely feel its soft strains brushing against my face. Oh, how I miss stroking it so much as well as snuggling it like it was my own personal blanket.

“Yes yes! Go on!” Rarity insists greatly with a broad smile as if I am on to something.

“Well… her hair is just as vibrant and beautiful as her namesake!” I recollect once more with a very dreamy smile. “Its fibers are incredibly soft to the touch! And her mane has that lovely smell of fresh clothes handing on a clothesline on a warm, sunny day!”

Sigh… poetic as ever!” she muses with a wide, tender smile before shaking it off to share her own thoughts in our discussion. “In any case, this does give me an idea on the perfect gift for her.”

“Well, I’m all ears.” I perk up with keen interest. “What do you have in mind?”

“Perhaps what you need this season is the perfect fashion accessory to go with that colorful mane of hers!” she beams ecstatically.

As much as I want to share in her enthusiasm, I’m not totally convinced with her suggested gift as I share my honest opinion in an uncertain manner, “Ehh… are you sure about that? I mean… I do trust you, and I appreciate all the help you’ve been giving me since we got here, but I don’t think Rainbow shares your exquisite taste when it comes to jewelry.”

“Well you will never know unless you try, darling.” she counters with a sly yet encouraging smile.

I give it some more thought over Rarity’s consideration before complying with an earnest grin, “Hmmm… well I can't think of anything else in the meantime, so I guess it won’t hurt to give it a look then. Okay, I’m convinced! Let’s go!”


At another store, Rarity and I went our separate ways as we search for the perfect gifts for our respective marefriends. Taking my time, I look at every hairclip and hairpin from the jewelry display case in front of me. And despite how well-crafted they are, none them really look appealing enough. I’m starting to think that this is just a lost cause.

Ooo-ho-hoo! This is just too good to be true! Oh, Ford has to see this!”

From hearing Rarity’s adorable, high-pitched voice, I turn around and wait on what she has to show me as my giddy friend gallops toward me and utters in shrill excitement, “Mustang! You will not believe this! But I just found the most wonderful pair of ponytail holders imagined!”

“Really? Well let’s see.”

At once, she uses her Unicorn Magic to reveal on what she just found and levitates them right in front of me. Within the floating aura of her light-blue magic are two very elegant hair ties. The elastic bands are coated in tiny, golden segments that are linked with one and another. But what’s more striking about them are the six gemmed ornaments that wrap around the thick bands and are depicted like apples. They follow a simple pattern of two alternating colors: red apples that are embedded with tiny specks of rubies and green apples with embedded emeralds instead. Just I would expect from a fellow artist, Rarity definitely has a good eye when it comes to thinking about others, especially for those that she holds so dear.

“See?” she points them out in uncontrollable excitement. “These golden, elastic bands are encrusted with precious rubies and emeralds, and they’re portrayed like the most polished apples anypony has ever seen! Oh, and look! I even found a matching pair! Ooo, won’t these go lovely with that fetching mane and tail of hers?!” she sighs all lovey-dovey as she rubs the twin accessories against her smiling cheeks.

I am quite happy for Rarity over what she has found for AJ, even though I wish I had the same luck on my end. But as I was taking enjoyment over her embellished reaction, she ceases her giggling all of a sudden as she looks at the bejeweled hair ties once again with a very somber expression this time before continuing in a more solemn tone.

“Although… I am facing a slight dilemma with myself.”

I gasp exaggeratedly as I inquire in a mocking state of panic, “Don’t tell me that you’ve finally met a price that’s too high for you to pay?!”

As I hoped, Rarity chuckles over my joking before responding with a clever grin of her own, “Clearly you have underestimated on how generous I can be when it comes to shopping, my dear! Anyway, there’s no price that’s too great for my marefriend, but… I am worried that Applejack will not appreciate it for herself.” she explains further in a less enthusiastic mood. “You know how she often prefers things more practical rather than something materialistic.”

“Like yourself perhaps?” I smirk bluntly.

She frowns in a funny manner in response to my sense of humor before she grumps in a bashful manner, “Well… since you have to put it that way…”

I giggle lightheartedly before acting more serious as I express myself with a sincere smile, “All kidding aside, I think you picked out a wonderful gift for AJ. You always do think of the value of one’s heart rather than the actual price itself. Believe me, I know that she’s gonna love them when she sees them herself!”

Her faintly grim expression softens up from my reassurance as she gazes back at the apple-themed accessories and takes a moment to make up her mind. Eventually, she beams anew in overwhelming joy as she affirms her next purchase out loud, “Okay, you’re right! I’ll take them! No returns and no exceptions!”

“That’s the spirit, Rarity!” I chuckle heartily with a proud grin.

“So, how are things going on your end? Has anything captured your interest yet?”

I look back at the jewelry display case and sigh in disappointment while shaking my head softly, “No… still no luck. I mean no offense to your fashion sense, but all of these clips and pins just look so… tacky!”

Rarity stands right next to me and stares at the encased accessories before concurring with the same disinterest as myself, “Hmm… yes, I can see what you mean. I believe these simply won’t do to fit in Rainbow Dash’s cool factor.

Sigh… well… back to square one.” I state it gloomily whilst I lower my head in discontent.

“Now wait just a minute, Ford!” she stops me hastily as she attempts to lift my spirits up once again. “We can still make this work for her! If none of these meet you or her expectations, why not just create it yourself? You know, like how you made that fabulous portrait for her birthday!”

“Rarity, I may be talented in my art skills, but I think you’re giving me way too much credit on this one! I’ve never crafted jewelry before!” I dismiss it with a sheepish chuckle.

“Well darling, there’s a first time for everything!” she comments cleverly before offering her proposition. “I would be more than happy to provide you some connections once we get back to Ponyville, and from there, you can participate in a jewelry workshop to create your very own present for her! Ooo, wouldn't it be so romantic?!” she fidgets in melodramatic enthusiasm.

Rarity certainly has a lot of confidence in my abilities, but I still have some doubt in my own capabilities. Still, her constant support does allow me to break into a tiny smile as I ask her, “You really think I can make this work for her?”

With a lighthearted chuckle, the fashionista shakes her head and replies in mild amusement, “Darling, you really should practice what you preached!” Then, she lays a gentle fore hoof on my shoulder and encourages me once again, “Trust me, Mustang… with some time and effort, I know for certain that you will create another spectacular gift for her just like before!”

Once I am finally convinced, I grin with determination and agree with an affirmative nod, “Okay, I’m in! If you could set this up for me, then I’ll take care of the rest from there!”

“Splendid!” Rarity exclaims ecstatically with sparkling eyes and a clap of her fore hooves. “Well then, now that we have completed everything else on our gift lists, let us enjoy the rest of our trip together, hmm?”

Surprise by this declaration, I then ask with a clever smirk, “Really? All of them? Well then where’s my gift, Rarity?”

In response to my playful whining, she counters that with an equally crafty grin, “That depends, darling. Where’s mine?”

Knowing full well that I couldn't find Rarity’s holiday gift with her always on my heels, my only response back is a simple yet hearty chuckle, “…Touché.”


One Month Later in Ponyville…

Tonight is Hearth’s Warming Eve, and most of the residents in Ponyville have gathered together in Town Hall for their annual holiday bash. But before I attend the party myself, I plan to wait outside for Rainbow Dash's arrival just as I suggested from the last letter I sent to her. Despite my hooves being in half-a-foot of snow, I don’t mind being outside in the middle of the night. Besides, I don’t feel that cold right now. It may be because of my natural, fur coat or because how well-built I have become from working as a weatherpony and a volunteer helper at Sweet Apple Acres. Either way, I intend to wait for as long as I can for her.

As I stand in place by myself, I admire the lovely scenery that’s around me. The calm night casts a serene, midnight-blue color over the cozy village. The delicate snowflakes dance gracefully in the midst of their slow descent. And multiple sources of light radiate in such various bright colors, whether it’s from the decorative lights handing all around town or the windows that are emitting that warm glow from the chimney-lit houses. Just seeing this wonderful contrast of light and dark colors makes me wish I had my sketchbook with me to capture this moment of serenity.

In the midst of my waiting, I think back to the present that’s secured in my saddlebag. As soon as I got back from our shopping trip in Manehattan, Rarity, as promised, contacted a couple of her friends, who are well-known for their jewelry making, to set up a workshop for me. Under their supervision, I drew out my plans and handpicked my selection of precious metals and gemstones before crafting them accordingly to my final design. Rarity was also very kind to give me some of her gems for my latest project. Like the self-portrait I created for Rainbow Dash on her birthday, I poured my heart and soul into this handmade gift for her.

Suddenly, I notice a passing shadow on the snowy ground before I instinctively look up. From the moonlit sky, I see a familiar silhouette with its wings spread out widely. But as I try to verify if that's her or not, the winged pony dives straight down and is heading right at me. With little time to react, I take that oncoming charge head-on before I am shoved right into the bank of snow.

As I lie on the frigid snow, I feel a warm yet familiar sensation pressed strongly against my muzzle. From opening my eyes, I take a better look at my supposed tackler, which not much to my surprise is none other than Rainbow Dash kissing me right on the lips.

From this surprise smooch, my body warms up right away as I return her ongoing affection by pressing my lips firmer against hers as well as wrapping her body with my forelegs and wings. The welcoming passion is so intense and hot right now that it makes me forget about the cold snow that I am still lying on. Eventually, we break from our entrancing kiss until we can see the dense, warm fogs breathing out of our mouths.

“I take that you missed me that much?” I ask shrewdly while catching my breath.

In response, her shrewd grin mirrors that with my own. “Whatever gave you that idea, Mustang?”

“Eh… just a hunch, I guess.” I shrug lightheartedly.

After that warm greeting, I get back up from the snow so I can get a better look at my Dashie. Strapped to her sides, she is carrying large saddlebags that are packed with lots of wrapped-up gifts she brought for her friends, which I can see a few of them sticking out of the bags’ strapped covers. And like always, whenever I don’t see her for a very long time, I am mesmerized by her beautiful, magenta eyes and her multicolored, flowing hair.

“Well let’s not stay out in the cold for too long!” she insists with a bold smile as she hovers toward the entrance. “I’ve got a welcome party waiting for me inside!”

From almost forgetting on what I intended to do once I am reunited with her, I instinctively grab her by the tail with my teeth as I say to her, “Hold on a minute, Dashie. There’s something I want to do first.”

Alarmed by that irritating pull, Rainbow flaps her wings harder as she shouts out loud, “H-h-hey! Don’t pull on my tail too hard!”

With my body firmly anchored, I hold my ground and mutter between my clenched jaws, “Oh come on, Rainbow! It’s not like it’s going to snap right--!”


Abruptly, something whiplashes my face as I fall backwards. As I get back up once again, I see my marefriend struggling out of a pile of snow that she tumbled into, face first. Once she is free, Rainbow looks back at me with wide, horrified eyes, and her lower jaw looks like it will fall right off its hinges. But as she is staring at me with petrified eyes, I am completely taken aback by what I'm staring at: a short stub of her once-elongated tail.

Slowly, I look down and see where that missing length was: grasped right between my jaws. Equally horrified as Rainbow Dash is, I quickly release my jaw and the clump of hair plops onto the ground. Eventually, I stare back at Rainbow, who is still frozen with immense shock, as I process on how I will apologize for making her tail look just as short as Vinyl Scratch’s. …Maybe even shorter than that.

“Rainbow, I-I-I’m so sorry!” I stammer in shame. “I-I didn’t mean to pull on it so hard--!”

But as soon as I lift up her recently ripped tail and hold it in front of her, I suddenly stop my desperate apology as I notice something off about her tailpiece. A bit peculiar by the tail’s unusual roughness from the touch of my hoof, I bring it close to my face before rubbing it, and I start to realize that its strands definitely feel… unnatural.

“Wait a second… this feels… fake…!” I confirm in a faint whisper.

After retracting the abnormal tailpiece away from my face, I saw another peculiar feature on this thing. At the anterior end of the tail, there is a blue, elastic strap attached to it along with a white tag affixed to that one. From examining it, I can definitely see a small picture of the Wonderbolts’ logo. My mind is completely overwhelmed by this startling mystery as I look back at Rainbow Dash with frozen, bewildered eyes as I hope to get some answers about this conundrum.

“Alright, no need to panic now.” Rainbow claims with a very nervous smile. “I can explain every--!”


From my screeching exclamation, Rainbow rushes toward me in and places a hoof over my mouth while turning me around before hushing me in a state of panic, “Ssshh! Keep it down, will you?!”

In a quieter voice to keep it just between us, I ask her again in a soft shriek this time, “What happened to your tail, Rainbow?!”

Sheepishly, she averts her eyes away from mine as she rubs the back of her hair while explaining herself, “Yeah… umm… about that… I had… a bit of an accident.”

“An accident?!” I shout out on impulse. “W-well why didn't you tell me about it in one of your letters?!”

Hastily, she reassures me with an uneasy grin, “It’s not that big of a deal, Ford! Really! I wasn't hurt or anything like that! Besides, It will grow back in due time. You’ll see.”

“But how did this happened?!” I fret continuously. “What kind of accident was this?!”

“Oh uhh… well… I think it happened in the middle of practice, but it just passed right by me, so I missed out on all of the details. I like said: no big deal.” she reassures once again with that awkward smile of hers.

I blankly stare at her from how vague her story sounded as Rainbow remains edgy in place while her eyes keep shifting away from my inquisitive gaze. Seeing how my fretfulness is just making her feel uncomfortable, I decide to leave it at that as I let out a heavy sigh before I walk up to her with a comforting smile and warmly embrace her in my wing.

“Well… I’m glad that you're back in one of piece. Uhh… figuratively speaking of course.” I chuckle lightly before pleading to her gently. “Just please… don’t hide something like this from me next time. You know I care too much about you.”

“I know, Mustang.” she nod softly to my request. “I’ll try to not worry you like that again.”

With a bigger smile over her assurance, I give her a nice peck before gradually letting her go and stepping back just a little. “In any case, I’m sure that our friends will be all the more excited to see the return of their favorite Wonderbolt. But before we go inside and wow them with your awesome, grand entrance…” And promptly, I reach in my saddlebag and pull out my present for her before continuing, “…Here. Happy Hearth’s Warming Eve, Dashie.” As I anticipated, Rainbow’s eyes expand significantly for what’s in front of her. On my left fore hoof is a small box with a simple bow right on top.

With a wide smile, she reaches for her present as she squeaks in childish delight, “Aw Sweet! Thanks, Ford! So… can I open it now?”

“‘Tis the season, right?” I permit her with a grin.

Unable to contain her excitement, she immediately pops the lid off of its box and beholds its unveiling. And just like on her birthday, she freezes in place with such astonishment before she gradually pulls out her present for a closer inspection.

In her fore hoof is a custom-made brooch that looks just like the tri-colored lightning bolt minus the cloud from Rainbow Dash’s Cutie Mark. Encased in its pure gold frame is an arrangement of three carved gemstones that depicts the lightning’s brightly colored strips: azure for blue, topaz for yellow, and ruby for red. And on the back of the gemmed ornament is a golden clip with a tiny turntable that allows you to rotate it on its axis.

“Ford… is this… something you created yourself?” she inquires hesitantly as she takes a break from looking at it.

“Yeah, I did.” I answer with a small smile of accomplishment before I explain the process in a slightly sheepish manner. “I tried searching for one in the stores, but none of them would ever measure up to your awesomeness. So I figure it would be better if I make one myself. Granted, I’ve never crafted jewelry before, so this is my first attempt to ever make something like this… with some help, of course.”

After my explanation, I look back at Rainbow to expect a more positive response from my gift. She is still displaying that level of extraordinary shock over this, but her gaping expression made me feel less enthusiastic by her unclear reaction as if she’s trying to come up the proper words from her mouth.

“Is there something wrong with it, Rainbow?” I ask with growing concern.

But her only response is in the form of a subtle whimper as she diverts her eyes away in shame. “Uhh… well…”

My heart begins to rupture from within my chest as I make a terrifying assumption based off of Rainbow’s hesitation. Of course, I should have known better from the start. I should have known that she wouldn’t take a liking to jewelry in general, no matter who it's from. So once I accept the rejection, I hang my head so low that my muzzle barely touches the snow as I state the obvious while trying my best to hide my pride-shattering disappointment for her.

“Ooh… you don’t like it, do you?”

“What?! N-n-no!” she hastily retorts in a shrill tone. “I love it! I really do! I mean… I really truly want to put it on right now!”

I raise my head up to see if she is telling the truth or not, but her conflicting expression is even more indistinguishable than before as she seems more hesitant than ever. “But... you see… I… umm…”

As she suffers a moment from a lost of words, she simply turns her head and uses her mouth to grasp one of her presents she brought over for our friends this evening. Softly between her jaws is a very long box that is wrapped in a very neat ribbon.

Very meekly, she hands me the box and insists in a strangely timid manner, “…You better open your present next and you’ll see what I mean.”

“O-oh… okay, sure.”

Steadily, I untie the ribbon and open the box. But once I lifted the lid up, I inattentively drop the box’s cover onto the snow as my eyes widen on what is inside. Carefully, I pull out my present as I continue to speechlessly stare at it before I mutter out in astonishment on what it is.

“It’s… it’s a scarf.”

Yes, from within the package is a beautifully woven scarf that shares a very distinctive feature with my marefriend: it is knitted in the same pattern as Rainbow Dash’s signature hair. Even the six individual strips bear the same bright colors as the ones on her mane and newly cropped tail.

“Huh, you know, this almost looks just like your--!”

But then, I abruptly stop myself as I make the most startling discovery tonight. I direct my eyes upward to not only look at my apprehensive marefriend, but to also look at her shortened tail to verify my astonishing conclusion.

Once I established that connection, I look back at her and inquire softly, “Rainbow Dash… did you… make this… with your own hair?”

Hesitant at first, she finally confesses the truth in a murmuring voice with a subtle nod, “Mm-hmm.”

After her acknowledgement, I redirect my eyes on the woven gift as I couldn’t help myself but break into an awe-stricken smile before I delicately rub it against my face. Despite its knitted texture, I can tell just by the fibers alone that this is definitely her genuine hair compare to her fake tail earlier.

“Oh wow! It’s just as soft as the real thing!”

With a glance, my compliment manages to cause Rainbow to break into a blushing smile while she averts away in that very cute, shy manner. Next, I bring the lovely scarf close to my nose as I whiff the lingering, faint scent of her naturally fresh fragrance.

“Mmmm… it even has that nice smell of yours too.” I declare out loud with a goofy, broad smile.

“D-d-don’t say weird things like that!” she screeches at me in a mad blush whose glow could rival that with Rudolph’s shiny, red nose.

“Sorry.” I apologizes with a sheepish, giggling grin. “My sappiness gets the best of me sometimes.”

Unable to stay mad at me for long, she breaks into a chuckling smirk and quips lightheartedly, “You big dork.”

After sharing a good chuckle with one and another, I ask her another question to confirm something else in mind, “There was no accident to begin with, was there?”

Feeling more at ease than before, she shakes her head before enlightening me about the scarf’s origin. “No, there wasn’t. When I first came up with this idea, I went to a professional knitter who can take any strains of hair and turn them into scarves. So overtime, I would come by and allow them to trim my hair bit by bit. But due to how busy my schedule was as a Wonderbolt, I can only stop by the shop for just a few occasions. And before we got ready for our biggest tour this season, I found out that the shopkeeper needed a lot more hair to complete my commission in time. So I… allowed them to trim my hair as short as they want.” she concludes humbly as she looks back at her clipped tail.

“How did you manage to keep this a secret without alerting the media or fans about this?” I inquire with further curiosity.

“Oh, that was easier than I expected!” she explains further with a smile. “Due to my rising popularity, the merchandise department has made tons of souvenirs based off of my stunning good looks! So they served as perfect substitutes for my mane and tail for the rest of the tour! Still, they are kind of a pain to keep them on for awhile, especially on how itchy the wig can get sometimes.” she complains mildly as she rubs her fore hoof against her mane.

As she lightly scratches her head, I can see something sticking underneath the mane’s fringes. They look like more of her bangs, but they the way they are cut tells me that there’s more to them than that. To confirm my assumption, I have to trouble Rainbow with more of my inquiries.

“You're still wearing the wig right now, aren't you?”

“…Yes.” she answers with renewed hesitation.

“Would you mind taking it off for me?” I request with a tender smile.

“…You promise you wouldn’t laugh at me?” she pleads bashfully.

“I Pinkie Promise.” I answer with certainty as I cross my heart and place my right fore hoof over my eye to honor that sacred vow.

A bit more hesitant at first, she lets out a heavy sigh before she places her hoof on top of the wig and slowly takes it off. The reveal of her newly trimmed hair is truly just as surprising as the present she just gave me. While she no longer has her long, flowing hair or the stylish fringes that stick out forward, she now sports a very cute, short haircut with her bangs that are nicely smoothed downward. Honestly, it's the kind of sporty hairstyle I would imagine on her if she was a human being.

Except for “Equestria Girls” because that one does not count.

“Oh wow…!”

“Yeah, I get.” she groans nonchalantly. “It's pretty shocking to see me without my awesome hairstyle, isn’t it?”

“Actually… I think it looks pretty cute on you.”

“C-c-cute?!” she stutters in absolute disbelief and embarrassment.

“Yeah totally! And besides, I uhh… have a thing for cute girls with short haircuts.” I confess with a mild blush on my smiling face.

While maintaining that glowing blush, she frowns to herself and pouts in response, “I don’t do cute!”

“You hardly need to when it occurs so naturally from you.” I shrug with a subtly sly smirk.

With a harrumph, she stomps toward me with that pouty frown and remarks sharply, “You know, despite how much I hate it when you get me all flushed like that...” Then, she surprises me with a short, sweet kiss before continuing with an appreciative smile, “...you certainly know on how to say the sweetest, most sappiest things sometimes.”

I chuckle softly over the shift in her expressions before gazing at the beautiful scarf once more and commenting with renewed astonishment, “I still can’t believe that you did all of this for me!”

“Well… I know how mushy you get when it comes to my mane, so I figure that with this scarf, you’ll always carry a piece of me whenever you take it with you.” From stating such rare sentimentality, she groans lightly before face-hoofing herself and complaining mildly, “Oh geez… I can’t believe how sappy that sounded just now!”

“It’s more than just that, Rainbow.” I carry on my own sentimentality from there with a big, emotional smile. “You were willing to give up your own hair and turn it into something extraordinary just for me! Thank you, Dashie. This… this is the nicest and most thoughtful gift I have ever received.”

As I thank her, I affectionately rub my head against her face and neck. Eventually, she returns the affection by snuggling against my own as I could hear her make those lovely, faint purring noises like the most adorable kitten in the world.

With our faces still glued to one and another, I halt my snuggling before expressing my regret to her, “Although… I do feel bad about the gift I made for you.”

“What’s there to feel so bad about?” she perplexes in response.

“I mean you actually sacrificed something precious to give me this wonderful present.” I pout in shame while holding up my soft, colorful scarf. “And all I did was spent some bits and didn’t give up any worth valuable in return.”

“Maybe not, but that doesn’t mean this hairclip isn’t as precious or priceless as that scarf.” she counters with a warm smile as she pulls out her gift and shows it to me. “You clearly put a lot of thought and effort into making this one-of-a-kind gift just for me, and that’s why I love it so much… just as much as I love you, Mustang.”

My emotional heart beats heavily against my chest as I am compelled from receiving such unquestionable devotion from my beloved angel. Once my beating heart takes it down a notch, I pull Rainbow in with a gentle wing and give her a deep, soft kiss as a sign of my indescribable gratitude and affection. She moans lightly in pleasure from accepting my tenderness before I gradually let her go and coming up with something schmaltzy right off the bat.

“And I love you as much as I love every single fiber on this beautiful scarf you’ve made for me.”

As expected, she giggles heartily in regards with my usual sappiness, but I know she welcomes my endearment nonetheless before she looks at her bejeweled hairclip and expresses herself with an awkward smile, “Still, if I knew that you were making this for me, I might have reconsidered my idea.”

With cogitative eyes, I stare at her hairclip and then at my scarf. From looking at these two, I contemplate on something that could bring these two together. And once that idea clicks in my head, I display a bright smile that stretches across my face and seek to share my thoughts with her.

“You know… maybe… we can make these two gifts into something that we can both share.” I propose with a sharp, crafty grin.

“Oh… how so?” she perplexes with keen interest.

“May I borrow your hairclip for a minute please?”

With an approving nod, she entrusts me with her gift. Once I receive it, I stand right next to her as closely as possible before I expand the scarf and drape it right over the two of us. While my marefriend bears witness to my work-in-progress with bewildered eyes, I wrap the long scarf around our necks before cozily securing it. And as a final step to my creativity, I fasten the lightning-shaped accessory right on the fabric and turn it 90 degrees up so that it stands upright.

With a smile of self-satisfaction, I point it out to her, “See? Now it’s a snazzy brooch that serves as a clip for our scarf!”

Once she inspects my work, she grins widely with approval and chuckles with a humorous smirk, “Rarity will be so proud right now!”

We share a good laugh before Rainbow loosens up and buries her muzzle within the folds of our shared scarf. Surprisingly, I could have sworn I can hear her taking a couple of sniffs from the fabric that's made out of her own naturally colored hair.

“Hmm… you’re right.” she admits casually with an easy smile. “I do smell really nice.”

Of course, I couldn't help myself as I provoke her with a knowing smirk, “He-heh… told ya!”

Not much to my surprise, I receive a playful nudge against my side, which causes me to chuckle spontaneously, and she giggles right along with me before asking, “So… you better now?”

“Much better!” I nod with an upbeat grin.

“Good! Now let’s go inside already!” she asserts boldly. “All of this schmaltziness is making me hungry! Ooo! I hope AJ brought her family’s hot cider for the party!” she prays with a hungry grin as she anxiously licks her chops.

With a chuckling smile, I assure her, “I’m sure they’ll have a barrel with your name on it!”

Soon, we pack up all of the empty gift boxes and unwrapped ribbons into our saddlebags. In the midst of our clean-up, I pick up Rainbow's replica mane and ask while showing it to her, “Oh wait, Rainbow! Don’t you want to put your disguise on first?”

She stares at the identical wig with expressionless eyes on what to do with it. And after giving it some careful thought, she breaks into a casual grin before answering with a shrug, “Hmm… nah. I don’t need to hide this from my friends! Besides, I actually want to see what kind of face Rarity will make once she sees my new hairdo!” she schemes with that devious grin of hers.

“I would definitely love to see that myself!” I concur with a hearty chuckle as I imagine all of the funny, exaggerative faces the famed fashion designer will undoubtedly make at her own expense.

“Of course, I’m not going to make this hairstyle permanent, you know.” she points it out with a unwavering grin. “I need to regrow my mane and tail if I’m gonna preserve my awesomeness for my adoring fans.”

Although I am slightly disappointed by her firm decision, I let out a soft sigh before abiding to her decision with a carefree smile, “Oh well… at least I’ll get to relish this for as long as I can.”

With everything packed up and our scarf still secured by its fastener, Rainbow pulls me along before I quickly pick up the pace, and we trot together towards the Town Hall where the ongoing party is being held at. But as soon as we get close to its entrance, Rainbow suddenly comes to a stop before she looks at me with a soft expression.

“Hey Ford?”


And as I face her, she once again surprises me with another tender kiss on the lips. Although this may not be as deep as our previous kiss, it's still as affectionate as ever. After her lips gracefully part ways from my own, she gazes at me with those mesmerizing, magenta eyes and that beautiful smile of hers.

“Merry Christmas, Mustang.”

I am nearly shocked to hear that holiday greeting from her. I know I shared a lot of my fond memories on that Earthly holiday through our letters, but I am deeply surprised and truly touched that she would say that just for me.

With a loving smile, I wrap her in my wing and respond right back in equal tenderness, “Happy Hearth’s Warming Eve, angel.”

With my wing enwrapping around her, and we finally enter inside to spend a wonderful evening together with good friends, family, and of course, loved ones. After all, whether it's Christmas or Hearth's Warming Eve, that's what the holidays are all about.

“Rainbow Dash, darling! How wonderful it is to see--!


Ha-ha-ha! As Rainbow Dash would say in usual fashion:



Author's Notes:

Special thanks to Mariacheat-Brony for pre-reading this.

This biggest and most obvious inspiration for this holiday special is a famous Christmas story, "The Gift of the Magi", where the husband and wife searched for the perfect gifts for their respective spouses. The husband would get brushes for his wife's long, beautiful hair, and the she in return would get him a chain for his pocket watch. Of course, this resulted them into sacrificing their own prized possessions in order to get their gifts for each other. While it had a meaningful ending, to me it usually felt... bittersweet, since both of them received gifts that they couldn't use at that point. So for my interpretation on this holiday classic, I added a bit of a twist in the end where Ford Mustang and Rainbow Dash would share their gifts with one and another.

Lastly, in regards with "The Epic Quest of Ford Mustang", I decided that the hairclip that is featured in this story is the same brooch used by Rainbow Dash as part of her wedding dress in the sequel's final chapters.

In any case, whatever holiday you are celebrating, I hope you have a nice time this year, and the year after that, and so on, and so forth!

Happy Holidays!

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