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Episode Triple Threat
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[cheerful music]
Spike: Is the banner even? Are the flowers in place? By which I mean "completely out of view". I'm pretty sure dragons don't like flowers. And what about the Ceremonial Dragon Fire Flame of Friendship? Is it still flaming?
[flame bursts]
Twilight Sparkle: Spike, everything looks great! You're getting yourself worked up for no reason.
Spike: I have lots of reasons. In fact, I wrote them down.
Starlight Glimmer: [sighs] You've been hanging around Twilight for too long.
Twilight Sparkle: [chuckles nervously]
Spike: Reason number one – I invited Dragon Lord Ember to Ponyville today. Reason two – the Dragon Lord is a dragon. Reason three – she's coming here to learn more about friendship.
Twilight Sparkle: According to Ember's letters, the dragons are trying to be friends, but competing is in their nature, and it's leading to more and more fights.
Spike: Which brings me to to reason number four. The Dragon Lord wants my advice, and as the new official Equestrian friendship ambassador to the dragons, I can't let her down.
Twilight Sparkle: I know you feel a lot of pressure, but you've got this, Spike!
Spike: I... I just want things to be perfect.
[tap, tap]
Spike: [gasps] Thorax! You're in Ponyville!
Thorax: Of course I am, silly! You invited me. And I'm not one to back out of an invitation. Hey, Twilight! Hey, Starlight!
Twilight Sparkle:
[nervously] Hey!
Starlight Glimmer:
[nervously] Hello!
Thorax: Oooh! I can't believe you did all this for me! Great banner! Love the stage! What's this flame thingy? Oh, it's pretty!
Twilight Sparkle: [whispering, to Spike] You invited Thorax over to Ponyville on the same day as Ember?!
Spike: Apparently.
Starlight Glimmer: That doesn't seem like a good idea. How are you gonna entertain them both?
Spike: I have no idea. [whimpers]
[theme song]
Spike: I completely forgot! Thorax wrote and said he needed to talk, and I told him to come over. I didn't realize it was the same day I invited Ember! What am I gonna do?! [teeth chattering]
Starlight Glimmer: Well, maybe they'll like each other.
Spike: Probably not. Ember is tough and self-assured and intimidating. And Thorax is...
Thorax: Spike, I'm so glad you invited me! You are one of my closest, nicest, most caring, most understanding friends ever! Ooh! Is that ice in the shape of a dragon?
Starlight Glimmer: Yeah, I see your point. They might not get each other.
Spike: Or worse – they'll hate each other! And if the leader of the changelings and the Dragon Lord get into a fight... [gulps] I could be responsible for starting a war that could ruin Equestria as we know it! [gasps]
[battle music]
Spike: [hyperventilates]
Twilight Sparkle: I'm sure that won't happen. Now pull it together.
Spike: So, heh, Thorax, heh, everything good with you?
Thorax: Well, honestly, no. Not really. I have indigestion. Not sure if it's the new diet or stress. Or maybe it's both.
Spike: No!
Thorax: Yeah, it really could be both. And it might be affecting my sleeping, too. I'm a real tosser and turner.
Twilight Sparkle: Uh-oh! [whimpers]
Spike: Sounds like you really need to unwind. Uh, how about a, uh... a trip to the castle? Heh. You can't miss that view.
Twilight Sparkle: Yes, the castle! I'll give you a personal tour!
Thorax: Uh, aren't you coming?
Spike: Yeah, I'm just gonna... grab some ice cream for us and catch up. Heh-heh.
[fanfare plays]
Spike: Dragon Lord Ember, as the official Equestrian friendship ambassador for the Dragon Lands and for Ponyville, I, Spike of Ponyville, welcome you to... uh, Ponyville. [quietly, to himself] I gotta work on my official speech.
Ember: Okay, thanks. [chuckles] Right. The hug thing.
Spike: [chuckles]
Ember: This place has a lot of colors. In the Dragon Lands, everything's just rocks or the color of ash. [sneezes]
[ponies gasp]
Ember: That's probably why.
[ponies screaming]
Ember: Hey, Twilight!
Starlight Glimmer: Actually, I'm Starlight. Starlight Glimmer. Nice to meet you.
Ember: Oh, sorry. I'm really gonna have to get used to these pony names. Lots of "-lights" and shiny things. So, where is Twilight?
Spike: She's in her castle. D'oh!
Ember: We should go visit her then. Part of friendship is saying "hi" to your friends, right?
Spike: Uh, well, yeah, but... [nervous stammering]
Ember: You're making weird noises. Do you have a stomachache?
Spike: Dah. I think I feel one coming on.
Ember: Well, you know what us dragons say. "Push past the pain!" Now, let's go.
Spike: Or we could stay here.
Ember: Or I could go without you.
Starlight Glimmer: [laughs] Ah, I like her.
Spike: Ohhh.
[door opens]
Spike: Good. They're not here.
Ember: What was that?
Spike: Uh, I... I said, "It's all clean in here!" Uh, you must be hungry from your travels. Please, I'd love to present you with an official friendship welcome banquet.
Ember: [crunching loudly] So this is something friends do? I could get used to this. [resumes chomping]
Starlight Glimmer: Actually, that's not food.
Spike: [aside] Dragons love gems!
Starlight Glimmer: Fine, but you're telling Twilight what happened to her wall.
Ember: [continues chomping]
Spike: Just keep her here. [to Ember] Okay, yeah! [laughs] Enjoy all the, uh... crystal... things!
Ember: Where are you going? I thought this was an official friendship banquet.
Spike: Just gotta use the little dragons' room!
Ember: [chomps]
Twilight Sparkle: So this is my comfy chair for fictional reads. [grunts] This is my studying chair because the hard back keeps me awake.
[door opens]
Thorax: Oh, Spike! I'm so glad you're here! [quietly] This castle visit is getting weird. Twilight really likes chairs. Oh, what happened to the ice cream?
Spike: What? Oh, right! Uh, they ran out. Heh. Hey, I'm really sorry, but I gotta borrow Twilight quickly.
Twilight Sparkle: Aah!
Spike: Be right back!
Thorax: But we didn't get to talk yet! [groans]
Spike: Ember's here!
Twilight Sparkle: I know. I saw you coming and had to distract Thorax by showing him chairs. Why did you bring Ember to the castle of all places?
Spike: I don't know! Ember was asking for you, Thorax wants to talk with me. We need to switch places! They might be getting suspicious.
Twilight Sparkle: All we have to do is make both Thorax and Ember feel special and keep them apart for a few more hours. We can do this.
[shimmering sounds]
Spike: Dah! What's happening?! [whimpers]
Twilight Sparkle: I think it's the map. It's calling... you. Apparently, you also have to solve a friendship problem!
[dramatic sting]
Spike: The map is calling me?!
Twilight Sparkle: Oh, amazing! The map is really reaching out!
Twilight Sparkle: Not a good time? I get it.
[door opens]
Starlight Glimmer: Spike, are you here? Ember's eaten all of Twilight's decorations, and—oh! Hey, Twilight! [chuckles, gasps] Glowing map... [gulps] Glowing spikes... That's not good.
Spike: I know!
Starlight Glimmer: At least your friendship problem is in Ponyville? Heh.
Spike: Okay, okay. To pull this off, I'm gonna need both of you to help. You two need to keep Ember and Thorax separate while I get ice cream.
Twilight Sparkle: You mean "find the friendship problem".
Spike: Yeeeees! Go easy on me. I'm under a lot of pressure.
Spike: Friendship problem? Anypony gotta friendship problem here? Any problems to solve? Friendship problems? Friendship problems! Anypony got a friendship problem here? No? Okay.
Lyra Heartstrings: [grunts] Well, I think vanilla strawberry cream is overused!
Sweetie Drops: Hmph.
Spike: Yes! Fighting! Uh, I mean, what seems to be the problem?
Ember: Mmm. Mmm. I'm stuffed. [belches]
Twilight Sparkle: Ember, there you are!
Ember: Okay, right. More pony hugs.
Twilight Sparkle: How's your trip to Ponyville so far?
Ember: Well, I'm certainly learning a lot about friendship. I had no idea it was polite to decorate your walls in your friends' favorite foods!
Twilight Sparkle: [laughs nervously] Oh, my.
Ember: Where'd Spike and Starlight go? I feel like I'm being avoided. [snorts]
Twilight Sparkle: Nooooo. They're just making sure everything is perfect for your welcome party later. In the meantime, how about I show you around town?
Ember: Sounds good. I can't exactly learn about friendship if I don't make new friends.
Twilight Sparkle: [sighs]
Thorax: [grunting, sighs]
[door closes]
Thorax: Oh!
Starlight Glimmer: Uh, hey, Thorax. Um, Twilight and Spike had some boring official paperwork to deal with, so looks like you and I get to hang out. What would you like to do?
Thorax: But I wanted to talk with Spike. He said he'd be right back.
Starlight Glimmer: Oh, you will. But first, how about we grab a bite to eat?
Thorax: Huh. Well, you know, now that you've said it, I am a little hungry. Is there a dining room in the castle?
Starlight Glimmer: No! I mean, yeah, but that's castle food. If you want the good stuff, we gotta go to town. Phew!
Spike: ...and that's why you should never let cupcake flavors get in the way of your friendship.
Lyra Heartstrings: Huh. I guess I never thought of it that way. Thanks, Spike!
Spike: Oh, come on! Glow!
Thorax: Spike! There you are! Uh, done with your boring paperwork, I see.
Starlight Glimmer: [laughs nervously] Uh-huh. Uh-huh.
Spike: Yep. [laughs] I am done with whatever Starlight says I was doing.
Starlight Glimmer: Thorax wanted to get out of the castle. I thought coming to town was a really, really great idea.
Thorax: Well, maybe now we can talk.
Spike: Uh, sssssure.
Starlight Glimmer: I'll leave you guys to it.
Thorax: First of all, I want to say thank you for having me over. I'm in a bit of a leadership pickle, and I could use some advice.
Spike: Well, I definitely want to help you out as quickly as possible.
Thorax: Here's my problem. There's this renegade group of changelings who still feed off of love. Even though I said, "Hey let's not do that anymore," they say, "Hey, this is how we've been doing things for hundreds of years..." [crossfades] ...but it's like they don't want to, even though I'm the leader and I have to... [fades out]
[ponies sounding interested]
Ember: Hello, I am Ember, daughter of Torch, winner of the Gauntlet of Fire, and lord of all dragons! [roars]
[ponies scream]
Ember: Usually when I do that, the dragons are eager to meet me.
Twilight Sparkle: That's not how ponies make friends.
Ember: Ah, I get it.
Derpy: [slurps]
Ember: This is a weird friendship thing you ponies do, right?
Starlight Glimmer: Uh, you guys are in town, too?
Ember: What are you talking about? You've been with me this whole time.
Starlight Glimmer: No. I'm Starlight.
Ember: Riiiight. I'm sorry, but you can't blame me. You both look and act so much alike.
Twilight Sparkle and Starlight Glimmer: What?!
Thorax: ...and they said to me they just keep saying the same thing. You know, I think my leadership problem started in childhood. I must've been three when... [crossfades] ...three's a different story, a-and you've definitely gotta hear it. But the story about my brother was when I was two... or was I one?
Crusoe Palm: This is my seat! I saw it first!
"Rainbow Stars": Well, I got here first!
Spike: Thorax, uh, excuse me for a second.
Crusoe Palm and "Rainbow Stars": [growl]
Spike: Ponies, please! If I may, I think I can help solve this friendship problem. You two should sit together. You both like the same place, you both ordered muffins, you're both ponies. I think if you made a little effort, you'd find— Whoa! Okay, that had to have done it. Come on, spikes. Glow! [strains, sighs]
Thorax: Hey, that was really great advice. So what do you think I should do?
Spike: [gasps] Uh, actually, I, uh... need a minute... alone... to, uh, really come up with great advice! [pants] I'll be right back.
Thorax: [sighs] Great. No problem. Leave me again. It's fine.
Ember: I'm just saying you're both purple ponies with purple hair. You both have cutie marks with sparkly things.
Starlight Glimmer: [chuckles] Mine's more of a glimmer. Heh.
Ember: How is that different? Oh, good. Spike. Can you please tell these two I'm right? They look very similar.
Spike: Uh... Well, y'know, one thing friends do is let something go when it's upsetting somepony else.
Ember: But I'm right! Besides, who are you to be telling me about friendship? I've barely seen you all day!
Spike: Uh, well, I've seen you.
Ember: Are you calling me a liar?!
Spike: [chatters]
Thorax: Hey! No one yells at my friend!
[transformation noise]
Thorax: [bear growl]
Ember: Spike, get away from the bear!
Twilight Sparkle: Actually, the bear is a changeling. And he's quite gentle.
Thorax: Not anymore! [bear roar]
Ember: [roars]
Thorax: [bear growl]
Spike: [screams] My worst fears are happening!
Spike: Noooo!
Thorax: [pants] Back away, Spike! I'm not gonna let this dragon harm a scale on your back!
Ember: You back away! I'm not gonna let you harm him! Wait. Did you say you're not gonna let me harm Spike?
Thorax: Yeah!
Ember: But that's what I'm doing!
Thorax: Uh, what?
Ember: Yeah, what?
Spike: [panicked] Equestria as we know it is over! The war that pits changeling against dragon is about to begin! And it's all my fault! My title of Equestria's friendship ambassador is a lie—! Oh. Hey. You guys aren't fighting?
Ember: Why would we be fighting?
Spike: Because I accidentally invited you both over to Ponyville on the same day?
Ember and Thorax: So what?
Spike: So I... was trying to keep you apart because I didn't think you'd get along.
Ember: Oh. I get it. You thought he wouldn't like me just because I'm a dragon and I'm bad at friendship?
Spike: No, no, of course not! But— Wait. Isn't that why you're here?
Ember: I can say I'm bad at friendship. You can't say it about me! You know what? I don't wanna talk about it.
Spike: Wait, please! [sighs] [to Thorax] I'm sorry.
Thorax: No, no, it's cool. You thought I would be too soft, and someone like Ember would never respect me. Just like my own changelings!
Spike: No, that's not it! Thorax, wait! Oh, no... What have I done?
Ember: Why are you still here?
Thorax: [sighs] Because I'm having trouble leading my pack, so I don't really wanna go home.
Ember: Wait, you're in charge? [chuckles] Oh, boy. You need to be more assertive.
Thorax: Well, that's my problem. I don't know how! I tried asking them to please follow my directions. I even offered a prize, and then—
Ember: Shhh! Stop talking.
Ember: That's how you do it.
Thorax: Whoa! That just gave me chills.
Ember: I know you have it in you. You turned into a bear to defend Spike.
Thorax: Huh, I guess I can be tough when I'm defending my friends, but when I'm just enforcing my rules, I-I feel unsure of myself.
Ember: There's nothing to be unsure of. You're the leader for a reason. Make a decision and let it be known that the decision is final. And if that doesn't work, turn into a bear.
Thorax: Oh, well, that's good advice.
Ember: I know it is.
Thorax: So what's your deal? Why do you think you're so bad at friendship?
Ember: I don't want to talk about it.
Thorax: Oh, you have to! How else are you gonna solve your problems?
Ember: Through feats of strength and fire duels, of course. [grunts, roars]
Thorax: Uh, how does that help?
Ember: Crushing another dragon in competition establishes my dominance and makes me feel great.
Thorax: Right, but, uh, how do you think they feel?
Ember: Humiliated! Ashamed! They'd probably wanna run away and bury themselves under a rock and... never come out. They're probably sad. Kinda low. Definitely not happy.
Thorax: That's because that kind of competition can divide you. And it doesn't get to the heart of the issue. Talking about your feelings does.
Ember: [sneezes] Ugh! I think I'm allergic to feelings.
Thorax: You know you don't have to be sappy...
Ember: [blows]
Thorax: ...or huggy-feely about it! But you should let your friends know how you feel.
Ember: Uh, I know where we can start.
Thorax: Where? Ohhhh. Spike. Hah. I got there.
Spike: I think they're gone. They probably never want to see me again.
Starlight Glimmer: Or they want to see you now.
Spike: [gulps]
Ember: Guess what, Spike.
Spike: I know. I'm so sorry.
Ember: Let me talk about this! I... feel... [strains] mad. [sighs]
Thorax: Okaaaay... That's a good first attempt. Now maybe try to be more specific?
Ember: [cracks limbs, breathes deeply] I'm... [sighs] upset!
Spike: You have every right to be.
Ember: I know I do! And I know I need to tell you how I feel because my friend Thorax said it would make me feel better. And it does!
Thorax: Yeah! And I have no problem telling you what you did was wrong because my friend Ember is helping me be more assertive!
Spike: Whoa.
Ember: Nice.
Ember and Thorax: Ha-ha!
Spike: You guys should be mad at me. I was so worried about how it could go wrong, I didn't even think about how it could go right. [sighs] Can you forgive me?
Ember: I really do feel better. So, yeah. I'm good.
Thorax: Hah. Me, too. [pleased sounds]
Ember: [groans] Again?
Spike: [laughing]
[spikes shimmering]
Spike: No way! It's finally happening! I solved the friendship problem!
Starlight Glimmer: Actually, you created the friendship problem by not trusting your friends.
Spike: Yeah, but then I solved it by learning my lesson. I should have told my two friends about each other immediately instead of assuming they wouldn't get along.
Twilight Sparkle: Good job, Spike.
Ember: Is this another part of pony friendship? Telling each other what you learned all the time?
Twilight Sparkle, Starlight Glimmer, and Spike: [giggling]
Starlight Glimmer: Yeah, pretty much.
Spike: Yup.
[ponies chattering]
Spike: [through loudspeaker] So, as a show of unity, I present the Dragon Fire Flame of Friendship to both Dragon Lord Ember and Thorax, leader of the changeling pack! May the flame of friendship burn for eternity.
[ponies cheering]
Ember: [sneezes]
[crowd gasps]
Ember: You should have more things made of rocks.
Spike, Ember, and Thorax: [laughing]