Please Stop Fighting

by jkbrony

Chapter 1: You're Not A Superhero

Twilight flopped herself down upon her warm and blissfully comfortable bed as numerous images of the day’s events bounced around through her mind. They were images of the frightening sort—the kind that would likely keep any filly up at night, terrified of what would emerge from her closet if she even dared to close her eyes, or what would force its way into her dreams if she managed to slip from consciousness. Just hours ago, Twilight was watching Applejack encircled in lime green flames to reveal herself as Queen Chrysalis in disguise, she was feeling the gentle flow of her mane and tail while she stood in a barren and wind-swept Equestria laid to utter waste by some undetermined entities, and she was glaring down Starlight Glimmer while they exchanged powerful blasts of magic with each other.

Yet just like the day itself, it was all over now. It was yet another victory hard-achieved, another friend hard-made. Equestria would remain safe and sound for at least another few months or so. And Twilight would now reap the well-earned reward of a long night’s sleep to allow the unpleasant images in her head to pass into memory...


The infant dragon’s voice was accompanied by the sound of his feet pattering across the crystal floor from behind her. Twilight lifted her head from the bed, instantly remembering that she had planned to talk with him about everything he had experienced today. Once again, he had been thrust into the forefront of danger alongside her, witnessing violence and despair unlike any he had seen outside of any comic book panel.

“Hey, Spike. I’m really sorry you had to go through all that with me today,” she said tenderly. “I’m sure it was pretty scary to see all that, huh?”

Spike hoisted himself up onto the bed, taking a seat by Twilight’s side before answering.

“Yeah, it was,” he said with a nod, his emerald eyes appearing to grow heavy. The somber look on his face immediately let Twilight know that there was something troubling on his mind.

“What’s the matter?” Twilight asked with a frown.

Spike did not respond right away and instead removed himself from the bed and walked over to a bookshelf in the corner of the bedroom. He cycled through it as quickly as he could until he pulled out a maroon-colored photo album. Twilight watched with curiosity as he opened it up and scanned through it with the same level of haste, eventually pulling out two photographs before returning to his spot on the bed.

“Do you remember this?” he asked, holding the first picture in front of Twilight’s face.

Twilight took a moment to examine the picture thoroughly, and her mouth curled into a smile as her memory of the event triggered itself. It depicted her filly self lying in front of a Hearth’s Warming Tree, staring down at a book in front of her while a tiny Spike began to doze off as he lay curled on her back. Several pieces of torn wrapping paper surrounded the tree—they had just finished opening their presents the night before Hearth’s Warming, establishing their very first holiday tradition.

“Of course I do,” Twilight replied. “It’s our first Hearth’s Warming Eve together! I could never forget this.”

“Neither could I,” said Spike with a smile that betrayed his apparent concern. He then held up the second picture. “How about this one?”

Twilight stared at another image of herself, no longer a filly, yet still lacking alicorn wings, sitting in the center of about a dozen open books scattered alongside numerous loose sheets of parchment, looking at the camera with the kind of stress-heavy stare which implied that she had a lot to do and almost no time to do it in. She chuckled at how unwary she appeared in the photo—Spike had taken it without her consent after getting her to look in his direction, yet she had been too flustered to care.

“Wasn’t this the time when you were trying to prove that trying to complete Princess Celestia’s three-week assignment in only three days was stressing me out?” Twilight asked, cocking an eyebrow at her young dragon.

“Yep,” Spike said with a hint of pride in his voice. “And I was right, wasn’t I?”

Twilight chuckled. “Looking back, yeah, you probably were.”

“You see, this is what I like to think about when I think about you,” Spike said, setting the pictures aside. “Sitting down to a book after a long and stressful day. Staying up late at night studying until you can’t stay awake anymore. Finishing an assignment for Celestia long before she expects it, because you think that your only option is to keep impressing her with your studiousness, or get sent back to Magic Kindergarten.”

Twilight chuckled again, recalling back her lengthy tenure as Celestia’s student, which had come to an abrupt end on the day she had put the period on Starswirl’s unfinished spell and subsequently kissed her life as a “ordinary unicorn” goodbye.

“Well, not a whole lot has really changed, Spike,” she said somewhat reassuringly. “What are you afraid of?”

Spike appeared to be uncomfortable about what he planned to say next. He clasped his hands around themselves.

“You just don’t seem the same anymore,” he said nervously. “And it’s not just because you’re a princess now.”

“What do you mean?” Twilight asked, looking curious.

“Well, it’s just that you really seem to do a lot of fighting now, a lot more than you used to,” said Spike. “I mean, you told me about the giant worm that tried to eat you and Cadence, and there’s Tirek, plus the bugbear thing just a month ago. And then there’s the one that I saw today—between you and Starlight.”

Twilight shifted her mouth in brief thought. It had indeed occurred to her that horn now seemed to discharge magical laser beams far more frequently than it used to.

“I guess you do have a point,” she said with an acknowledging nod. “But that doesn’t really mean I’m not the same anymore, does it?”

“Well, before now, when you would tell me the stories of your fights, they always sounded…kinda cool,” said Spike, scratching his head apprehensively. “They kinda made you seem like you were the real Masked Matterhorn. I never really thought about the danger since you would always come back without so much as a scar. But now that I’ve seen one of your fights in person, I don’t feel the same way anymore. Any one of Starlight’s blasts could have knocked you out and made you fall to your death, and that had me worried.”

“I’m sorry, Spike,” Twilight said, frowning. “I’m really sorry you were there to see that.”

“I’m not. I’m glad I was there,” replied Spike, pausing for a moment to cast his shimmering, green eyes deeply into her own. “That’s why I want to ask you…to please stop fighting.”

Twilight looked at Spike as though he had said those words in a language she did not comprehend, hoping to gain more time to formulate a response for his unexpected request.

“Stop fighting,” Spike repeated. “Stop throwing yourself into these battles. Stop putting your life on the line like that.”

Twilight looked hard at him and sighed. The look on Spike’s face was one she had seen numerous times—his concern was genuine and his worry was as real as each of the alternate timelines they had both witnessed that day.

“But Spike, there are times when I just have to fight,” Twilight said with a sorrowful sigh. “Sometimes I don’t have any other choice.”

Spike responded by casting his eyes down at the bed underneath him, and Twilight was certain that she caught a glimpse of a tear or two welling at their surface.

“It just doesn’t seem right,” Spike said hesitantly. “Why does it sometimes fall only upon you to fight for Equestria’s safety?”

“I don’t know, Spike,” Twilight said, shaking her head. “But it just does sometimes. And as a princess, many ponies are counting on me to keep them safe. I can’t just shy away from that duty.”

Spike lifted his head back up, and his moistened eyes looked at Twilight with a sense of understanding of her position, while still lacking any intention to abandon his own.

“You’re not a superhero, Twilight!” he exclaimed out of desperation. “I can’t just pretend that life is a comic book and that you’ll come out unscathed because the heroes always win in the end. This is real, and every time you fight, there’s a chance that you could die!”

The word “die” immediately triggered a bout of tears to rush down his face, his anguish refusing to remain contained within him.

“I’m sorry, Spike, I really am,” Twilight said, looking mournfully at his falling tears. “I understand your concern, I really do. But if a threat to the safety of Equestria arises, I have to deal with it in one way or another. That’s the duty my friends and I have been tasked with. Of course there’s a chance I could die, but if we don’t deal with the threat, there’s no telling what could become of Equestria, or how many other ponies could die.”

Spike hastily wiped his flooding eyes, but offered no reply. His face fell as he reflected on Twilight’s words, and his troubled expression was refreshed with the new worry that his argument was losing legs to stand on.

“You saw it all yourself, Spike,” Twilight continued, speaking with a softer voice. “You saw each and every one of those terrible futures along with me. You know how much Equestria is relying on me and our friends. What you saw was what will happen if I don’t fight. It’s what will happen if I run away.”

Spike wiped away the last of his streaming tears, then rose to his feet and adopted a new, vigorous demeanor that nearly took Twilight by surprise.

“Then I’ll fight, too,” he said firmly.

Twilight blinked and stared at Spike as though his voice had been inaudible or incomprehensible, even though his every word had reached her ears as clearly and audibly as if he had been speaking directly into her ear.


“Or maybe…I could fight instead of you,” Spike said, his voice still firm. “I am your faithful assistant, right? I’m committed to serving you however I can, and maybe that should include fighting your battles for you.”

Twilight was rendered entirely speechless—she could not even find enough voice to stammer for a response. There was clearly no question of the sincerity of in Spike’s words. The tone of his voice and the piercing ferocity of his eyes did not hold even the slightest trace of doubt, insecurity, or even fear.

“Spike…I...” She could say nothing more, and instead shook her head slowly as a visual display of her response.

“I could do it,” Spike continued, as serious as ever. “I wouldn’t be afraid, at least not any more than I would be if you were the one fighting. I may be small, but I can breathe a lot of fire if I really try. You saw me at the Equestria Games, didn’t you?”


Twilight tried again to verbally express her thoughts, but could only manage his name. She sighed and shook her head again, hoping that it would be enough for Spike to discard his unsettling proposal.

“Just let me fight for you,” Spike said, eyes widening with desperation, showing no intention of letting up. “Please, Twilight. I don’t want to see you fighting for your life like that again.”

The air became quiet and unexpectedly chill between them, and Spike’s pleading eyes made Twilight almost feel guilty about having to turn down his desperate pleas. Her lips trembled with discomfort as she prepared them to form complete sentences again.

“No, Spike,” she said as sternly as her weakened voice would allow. “I’m not going to let you do that.”

“But I just have to sit back and let you fight?!” Spike replied in frustration, a of fresh batch tears, glinting with emerald as they trailed from his eyes. “That’s not fair, Twilight!”

His frustration struck Twilight directly in the heart, and she soon found her own tear ducts working hard to react to her surprisingly abrupt shift in emotion.

“You’re right, Spike,” Twilight said with a nod, placing a comforting hoof around the infant dragon. “It’s not fair to you. You shouldn’t have to worry about my safety.”

“No, I shouldn’t,” Spike said in bitter agreement. “And I don’t want you to worry about mine, but...I just don’t know what else we can do.”

They sat in silence as the chill air gradually became warm within in their embrace, and Spike permitted his wet eyes to dry. Twilight regret her failure to recognize his presence as she exchanged laser blasts with Starlight in front of him. In that moment, she could not suppress the genuine feeling of being a mother who was now faced with the difficult task of reassuring her child that she would come back alive from something particularly dangerous.

“I’ll tell you what, Spike,” she said suddenly. “I have an idea.”

Spike lifted his head, giving her an inquisitive look.

“Do you remember telling me about how you handle stress? The way you take a deep breath and count to ten?”

Spike answered with a slow nod. “Yeah?”

“Well, from now on, whenever we’re forced into another situation like today’s and you’re worried about whether or not I’ll make it back alive, I want you to do the same thing,” Twilight said.

Spike scratched his head in thought for a moment, then shook it. “That won’t help me.”

“Yes, it will. And I’ll tell you why,” Twilight said, cracking a smile. “Think of it as my promise to you. Each time you take a deep breath and count to ten, it’s my promise to you that I will make it home safely.”

Spike shot her a look of such sheer confusion that it nearly made her chuckle.

“You won’t be worried anymore,” she reassured him. “Just trust me.”

“But….does that mean that you’ll still fight?” Spike asked, his eyes enlarging and appearing to go sad again.

“Only if I have to,” Twilight replied hesitantly. “Only if there’s no other way a situation can be handled. Only if I’m backed into a corner and it’s the only way I can get myself out.”

The young dragon rubbed his chin, briefly considering her proposal. Twilight waited for his response, hopeful that she had successfully put an end to his dilemma.

“But...what if I don’t do it?” Spike asked suddenly, his voice wrapped in a sudden fear. “Does that mean that you won’t come home safely? That you’ll die?”

Twilight shook her head at once. “Well, no, but—”

“I don’t think I could handle that!” Spike exclaimed, his voice becoming frantic. “Besides, what if something happens when I’m not around and don’t know about it?! How could I do it then?!”

“Okay, okay, calm down,” Twilight said, tightening her grip around him. “I guess that’s not such a good idea after all, is it?”

“It’s not real,” Spike replied, shaking his head.


“It’s not real,” Spike repeated louder. “It wouldn’t have worked for me anyway. It’s nothing but a false sense of hope. It’s not something that I can believe in.”

Twilight failed to hold back a groaning sigh at the helplessness of their situation. As much as she could justify her reasons for fighting, she knew that Spike’s worries were just as founded and reasonable. They were so reasonable, in fact, that she was certain that she’d likely be feeling the same way in his scales, and it would have undoubtedly taken more to satisfy her as well.

“I suppose you have a point,” she said.

“So give me something that I actually can believe in,” Spike said firmly. “Please, Twilight. I need this.”

“Alright, then,” Twilight replied with a nod. “You can believe that friendship is a magic more powerful than any other, and that we won’t ever lose so long as we have it on our side.”

Spike looked somewhat unconvinced, yet decided to keep on listening.

“You can also believe that we’ve never allowed evil to win, and we certainly don’t plan to start anytime soon,” said Twilight.

“Is that all?” Spike asked, still appearing unconvinced. Twilight cast him a confident smile, certain that what she had to say next would put an end to his every concern.

“You can believe that there is no evil force in all of Equestria that will keep me from coming home to you,” Twilight said, continuing to smile down at him. “I’ll never lose as long as you’re counting on me to win. And you’ll always be counting on me to win, won’t you?”

The warmth of Twilight’s embrace reached Spike in a way it hadn’t before—it spread through his body and into his tear ducts, where contented tears glazed in his eyes.

“Yes, Twilight, I’ll always be counting on you to win,” he said, smiling back at her.

The grip of their embrace tightened even more, and they both fell momentarily silent as the atmosphere swiftly became tender and affectionate.

“So, is that something you can believe in?” Twilight asked him, looking hopeful.

After briefly pondering to himself for an answer he already knew, Spike stood back up on the bed and rose to his tiptoes to gently nuzzle Twilight’s cheek, the loving warmth in his heart effortlessly shifting over to her own.

That’s something I can believe in.”

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