Gilda hated this. She had been nervous all the way to Junior Speedsters Flight Camp. She had started feeling sick during the tour of the camp. And now that they were all getting ready to line up to meet their instructor, she wanted nothing more than to fly as far away as her wings would carry her.
"Hey, what ARE you," piped up a red pegasus near Gilda. "Were you cursed by some evil enchantress or something? Where are your hooves?" She asked rapidly looking Gilda over.
Gilda sighed inwardly and answered for what felt like the thousandth time today, "I'm a griffon."
Another pegasus, a green boy, immediately chimed in, "So you're, like, a monster from one of those untamed forests? I didn't know monsters could talk."
Gilda ducked her head and walked away as quick as she could to her place in the line-up and said much too quietly for anyone to hear, "I'm not a monster."
Moments after the last pony had lined up a pink blur streaked into view and past the campers. The blur circled the field twice and then came to an abrupt stop in front of the line revealing an adult pegasus with two lighting bolts as her cutie mark.
"My name is Firefly and I will be your instructor for the duration of camp," the pegasus said rapidly. She began walking down the line looking briefly at each camper. "You are here because you all have shown amazing potential and if you commit yourselves and follow my instructions, I promise you, there won't be a single pegasus duty," at that moment she had come to Gilda. She stopped walking briefly, only a moment or two, but Gilda knew that every single pony in the line noticed and tried to get a look a what caused the disruption, at her.
Gilda felt panic rising in her until Firefly resumed both her inspection and speech, "There won't be a single duty that you won't be able to perform flawlessly in the service of Equestria and Celestia." Firefly had finished her inspection she turned to face them all and began roll call.
Gilda only half listened as her fellow camper's names were rattled off and waited for her turn. When Gilda's turn came, her voice betrayed her and came out only as a croak. The light snickering felt like hot needles being pushed into her skin. She only again became aware of what Firefly was saying when she began repeating the same name with increasing irritation. "Rainbow Dash. Rainbow Dash! Has anyone seen Rainbow Dash?"
"Rainbow Dash is here!" a voice called out from above. All eyes looked to skies to see the colourful young pegasus come streaking towards the ground like a missile. Rainbow flared her wings to stop her rapid descent only for them to buckle a moment later and send her crashing to the ground and rolling towards the line like a bowling ball with hooves. Gilda was about to take to the air when the ponies on either side of her took flight, one of them accidentally kicking her in the head. She was dazed momentarily before the rolling pegasus crashed into her, sending her sprawling.
Firefly swiftly ran to the tangled limbs of the two campers. "I'm okay," let out the dazed Gilda. Rainbow Dash's face appeared from behind one of Gilda's wings dizzy, but unharmed and giggling with excitement.
"Sorry about that," Dash said to her irritated instructor. "The wind must have kicked up at the last second. I totally nailed that landing in practice."
"Well then," Firefly began stiffly. "If nothing is broken would you disentangle yourself from the griffon and take your place in line. And it would be best if you save the aerial stunts for those who know what they're doing."
As Firefly turned to walk away Gilda felt the still entangled Pegasus tense up and then she shouted, "I know what I'm doing! I'll bet you before camp's over that I'll be able to circle this whole place in ten seconds flat!"
Firefly stopped walking and turned her head back to the young hot head, "Really? Ten seconds?"
"Yeah," said Rainbow Dash defiantly. She looked lost in thought for a second and then quickly added, "Twice!"
Firefly smiled and then resumed walking away and only said, "Big claim, better be ready to back it up."
Gilda cleared her throat to get Dash's attention, "Do you think you could," she began. Rainbow quickly rolled off of Gilda and apologized. Rainbow Dash then stopped and for the first time actually looked at Gilda. Gilda was already feeling embarrassed and getting ready to again explain what she is.
"I really like the whole," Dash made a vague gesture with her fore hooves, "The whole lion, eagle thing you got going on there. It's pretty cool." And with that Rainbow was running back to the reforming line.
Still lying on the ground, Gilda whispered to herself. "I'm cool?"
For the rest of that day, Gilda could not stop smiling.