Upon arrival, Twilight took a deep breath and gave the door a few knocks. She glanced at her friend once more, bearing a serious expression. It was met with an equally profound one. The quasi-staring contest was interrupted by Fluttershy, who happily greeted them and brought them inside, "Did Rainbow Dash tell you about the baby dragon?"
"Yes, we heard," said Twilight, looking over to Rainbow Dash once more. She continued, "I was hoping to get a look, can we see it?"
"Of course, the dragon's right over here, I made her a bed after she fell asleep." Fluttershy said smiling, while bringing her friends over to the basket where the small dragon slept soundly, looking as serene as ever. The snoring had stopped however. Rainbow Dash and Twilight leaned over the basket. Spike hopped off of Twilight’s back to get a better look himself. He couldn’t help but stare. He had seen other dragons before, but never the same size as him. Though there were many obvious differences between the two, certain features were significantly akin. Twilight observed the practically mesmerized young drake and couldn’t help but wonder what was going on in his mind. She looked back at the sleeping form and said to Rainbow Dash: "Well, seems like you weren't making it up."
Twilight's speaking woke the baby dragon, giving her a shock as she saw the two ponies and dragon standing right over her. The young dragon jumped from fear and quickly attempted to flee in one direction, leading her to a corner. When Rainbow Dash and Twilight approached her, she growled, trying to scare the ponies in an act of desperation. Twilight stared blankly at the pathetic attempt and Rainbow Dash scoffed: "Nice try, kid."
Before anything else could be said, the cornered dragon looked around for an escape route. Spotting Spike, who was still standing near the basket, she bolted between the ponies and hid behind him. Spike let out a surprised "hey!" when being grabbed and used as a shield.
"It's okay, we're not going to hurt you. We just want to talk." Twilight said, realizing their mistake. To her surprise the dragon let go of Spike and chided: “You ponies scared the bejesus outta me! What’s wrong with you?”
Taken aback, Twilight paused for a moment before she apologized: “You’re right, that was rude of us.”
“It sure was!” the dragon replied before heading towards the door, saying: “Well, I’m off! Thanks for the grubs!”
“Wait! Where are you going?” Fluttershy asked.
“Out.” The dragon responded as she opened the door.
“You’re gonna leave just like that?” Rainbow Dash demanded stupefied. The dragon stopped.
“Yup. I never wanted to be here in the first place.” She deadpanned.
“Why you ungrateful little…” Rainbow Dash started, but Fluttershy interjected, her caring nature quelling her shyness.
“Where will you stay?” she asked.
“I don’t see how that is your problem.” The dragon retorted, getting impatient. She started walking again.
Spike watched everything transpire before him, but somehow he couldn’t find anything to say. As the scene unfolded he became increasingly hungry. He then remembered he hadn’t eaten anything in five hours.
"I could really go for some gems..." Spike mumbled to himself, not expecting anyone to hear. He was wrong.
"Spike, we've got more important things to worry about, if you haven't noticed!" Twilight spat.
"I can't help it, Twi! You know how hungry I get!" Spike countered defensively. “Gems?” a voice said. The two simultaneously snapped their heads in the direction it came from.
“It’s been a while since I’ve had gems…” the other baby dragon said quietly.
“Would you like some?” Spike asked, running up to her, “‘cause I know somepony who always has a lot of them!” He then gave his purple guardian a pleading look.
Twilight knew where this was going. Though she did not have any visits to Rarity scheduled until next Tuesday, she did want to learn more about this dragon.
Relenting with a sigh, she said: "Fine, let's head over to Rarity's to see if she has any gemstones," and then turned her attention to the other dragon, "would you like to get something to eat? I'm sure Rarity has some jewels she can spare for you."
The offer of food drew the young dragon's attention, but it also made her suspicious. She was unsure why the ponies were so willing to share their possessions with her. She had done nothing to gain their favor. Then again, if these ponies meant any harm, they would have done so already. She weighed her options and decided it would be best to just roll with it. She didn’t have anything better planned anyway. She glanced at Rainbow Dash, who was hovering just above the ground with her front hooves folded. Obviously this one didn’t like the idea so much.
The group walked over to Rarity's boutique, except Fluttershy who had to do more work with the animals at her cottage. Not much was said on the way there. Rainbow Dash, Twilight and Spike found themselves mostly looking at the dragoness, who was taking her surroundings in. When they arrived at Carrousel Boutique they found Rarity sorting her dresses as they entered.
"Welcome to Carrousel Boutique, how can I help…” Rarity started in a charming manner, but stopped upon seeing her friends, “oh, why… hello there, girls, Spike, what brings you here? I see you’ve brought a friend. How delightful!" Rarity smiled. Twilight and Rainbow Dash summarized the situation from start to finish. Rarity listened intently and observed the green dragon as best she could while said dragon scanned the room.
Twilight then added on the end, "… so Spike got hungry and we thought it would be a good idea to get some gems for the both of them. We don’t want to impose, but do you think you have any you could spare?"
"Of course I do! Spike and that darling little dragon shall have plenty to eat. Speaking of which, would you like to have lunch too, as it is time? I can make us a salad, I found out about a new recipe and it sounds absolutely lovely." Rarity responded in her usual manner.
“Count me in!” Rainbow Dash asserted, having brightened up a bit.
“Lunch would be great!” Twilight said.
All of them moved to the kitchen for lunch. Twilight, Rarity, and Rainbow Dash were served salads while Spike and the new dragon shared a platter of gemstones. The latter seemed crazed by the way she ate. With a competitive look, she gnawed her way through many stones. Shards of rubies, sapphires, and other stones fell about as she kept grabbing and chewing more. Rarity watched in horrified curiosity, barely able to eat any of her own food. Rainbow Dash ate normally while Twilight did so and watched the rest of the table. Spike initially ignored the other dragon’s eating style, but eventually became competitive himself and began eating the same way.
Rarity's horror grew before finally she had to say something, "So, what is your name?"
The dragon did not look away from her meal, pausing only long enough to say, "Jade" in a disinterested fashion.
Twilight seized the chance, "So, Jade, where are you from?"
"A cave," said Jade.
Rainbow Dash looked up, "Well duh, but where is this cave?"
Jade, still disinterested, "Dunno."
In frustration, Twilight levitated the platter of gems out of the two dragons’ reach, causing Spike and Jade to look annoyed. Twilight then demanded: "What do you mean you don't know? It's your home, isn't it?"
Jade replied in an anxious tone while watching the platter, "Like I said, I don't know."
Rarity cut back in, "Well then, how did you get here?"
"I just walked through the forest." Jade said, still watching the platter closely.
"You were in there alone? For how long?" asked Twilight.
Jade's expression changed to a thoughtful one, "Good question, the sun went up and down a lot of times. I lost track."
Rarity turned to Twilight and said: "The poor dear must have been in there for weeks."
Twilight returned the platter of gems to the table. To her dismay, Jade and Spike immediately dug in like rabid wolves. She turned to Rarity and replied: "Sounds like it. She could be from just about anywhere."
Rainbow Dash pushed her now empty plate away and stood up, "thanks for lunch, but I'm gonna get going. You guys got this, right?"
Twilight ignored Spike’s lack of table manners for the time being and replied to Rainbow Dash: "we'll handle it somehow."
Dash took this to mean everything was good to go and left the boutique, Rarity walked her to the door and then returned to the table where Twilight sat in thought.
"Will she be staying in Ponyville?" Rarity wondered out loud.
Twilight responded, "We can't just stick her back in the Everfree forest."
"But where will she stay?" Rarity quickly replied.
"We're going to have to figure something out," said Twilight, "I'll take Spike and Jade to the library."
In a shocked manner Rarity asked: "Twilight, how are you going to manage raising two baby dragons?"
"I didn't say I was going to raise Jade, I just need somewhere I can think clearer." Twilight responded, reeling in defense.
"Oh," said Rarity in realization, "well in that case I'm certain you'll come up with a brilliant solution to care for this adorable little thing."
Twilight suggested happily: "What would you think about taking Jade in? You seem to like her."
Rarity glanced over and saw the two baby dragons wrestling over the final gem, she turned back quickly and responded, "Moi? Oh, no, no, no! I'm afraid I simply haven't the room. What with my shop being a mess and Sweetie Belle staying over so often these days."
"I understand. Thanks anyway and thank you for lunch," said Twilight. She turned to the two dragons, Jade happily chomping on the last of the gems. She called to them, "Alright you two, let's go."
Jade thought about the command for a moment, she decided that with all the good food she was given that she might get more good things. So she eagerly followed Twilight and Spike over to the library.
Silly, silly, Jade.