The rain outside patters against my windows. The wind pushes the branches against their wills. They keep batting their entwined arms at my walls and never stop the replicating rhythm. The candle lamp next to me provides me a dim light, making the room all dark and despairing. The sky proves no less gloomy as it is in the darkest of midnights. If I were to look out my stormy window, I would see nothing but darkness. No rays of light will shine through the clouds tonight, for it is night. Not day. I could not however turn my attention away to the window as there are matters to attend to right in front of me.
Tonight, the Family has sent to me a young colt in his teen years. He has the look of a willy nilly prankster. A very slim colt. Yet always seem to have a smile on his face. He isn’t showing that smile right now. He sits on a red velvet cushion I specifically asked for so that members of my family or others of the outside may feel comfortable at the expense of awaiting my approval to what favor they ever ask for. They all ask for favors. I could never have a nice chat with somepony without their lips moving their rims to form some sort of question that requires me to say yes or no. This colt is no different.
The colt glances at me every now and then but he holds back every time I look into his eyes. If it wasn’t for that fact that this colt works under the very society I lead, I would have had his flank whipped for such misconduct. But I am very benevolent to my Family, so I will keep that image in the colt’s head.
He speaks to me in a quivering voice. “W-why am I here Miss Fluttershy?”
My voice spoke to him in a calm manner. “That is the question we are all waiting for, isn’t it Brass Pipes?”
“I-I suppose so,” he said.
I lean in closer to him from my wooden desk. It is of pristine condition. Mahogany wood fresh from the depths of the Everfree Forest. My husband has chopped it himself to prove he is worthy of being a part of the Family. He even brought back a tamed timber wolf to be the Family’s guardian. I care for him deeply, which is why I had the wood turn into the very desk that holds all my important documents of business plans, deals, and a very special key to the Treasury of the Shy Family. This desk symbolize my husband’s determination to help safeguard the family’s secrets and wealth for as long as he lives. I hold back the tears of my sorrow as my mind moves forward to the day of his death.
I give the youngling a smile. “There is no need for you to fear me Pipes. Your mother, Silver Pipes, is my sister, and so you are my nephew. We are all forgiving to each other and care for one another. Is it so?”
He shows me signs of that great smile of his. “I-I guess so.”
I relax back into my chair. “Then there is no need for you to feel down. Sure you have failed to bring in the shipment of gold, but that was days ago.” I lean forward again, resting my chin on the forth of my hooves. “By this time, the enforcers would have already caught us and demand us to either pay for crimes. However that has not happened yet. And you’ve brought your entire team to safety without any injuries. That to me is success.”
“But what about-“
“Do not worry about the gold. The Family is already swimming in a vast collection of bits. If we wanted more, there are other ways to find them.”
“Okay,” he said.
I step off my chair and move towards the door. I leave it open for my visitor.
“Do not worry about what your parents will ask or say. I will call them to assure that everything is alright,” I said.
The colt nods to me and walks out the door. He still doesn’t look happy though. I stop him to give his mane a rustle.
“Hey, don’t feel bad Pipes. Everything has a silver lining. Yours is that you learn from the mistakes you have made and you could try again to succeed another day.” He gives me the wide smile I was looking for.
“Thanks Miss Fluttershy!” he said.
I watch him trot away down the golden halls of the mansion. I let out a breath of relief as the last of his tail disappears around the corner. I’ve waited patiently enough for my tea break. I trot out of my office to make way to the bedroom. As I go down the hallway, pictures of various family portraits stare down at me. Some giving me smiles, some giving me blank looks. Looks that could be found at a nice round of poker. As I reach the entrance to my grand chambers, I could hear mutters through the door. That isn’t good.
I open the door to be greeted by my brothers and sisters. Some of them related by blood, some of them related by means of marriage. All of them, family. On good days, they would give me smiles of gratitude of happiness. Those smiles usually follow with good news. Tonight seems to be a wave of bad news however as they give me cheerless faces. My sister, Silver Pipes, is there in all of her silver glory. Her mane and coat are matching colors of her very namesake. Her eyes only show the difference as they shine with a brilliance of gold. She pulls out a chair for me. I answer her actions by gracefully sitting upon the chair.
“How is my son doing?” she asked with eyes full of concern.
I sip of cup of tea that was sitting in front of me. “He is fine. He may have not obtained the needed gold, but we have not been called by the Royal Guards. And our family members have made it out with no casualties thanks to the leadership your son. You should be proud of him.”
“But the operation-“
“Will be paid for. Your husband will be fine I assure you. He is a strong stallion that one,” I sip some more of my tea. Mmm, raspberry.
“If you say so my dear sister,” she said, breathing a relaxing sigh.
“But we still have matters to attend to,” a colt said in a serious tone.
Steel Battalion always did cut to the chase. He looks at me with grey stormy eyes. Eyes as grey as the clouds outside. His coat is of the same color, with his mane snow white. Also, his mustache is the same color.
I sip some more tea. “What is the problem Steel Battalion? In every moment that you address in that voice, there is always a skirmish to follow.”
“That is exactly what I want to say. The Hollow Family is making their move. They no longer wish to proceed with the peace treaty. They are answering with blades and bullets,” he said.
I put down my tea. “How many dead?”
He looks down in shame as if he was responsible for the deaths of our family. “Two Miss Shy.”
I look down at the raspberry ice tea that I will never seem to finish tonight. The lightning outside cracks with fury as it answers the call of my judgment. I silently weep for the death of two, making sure to show no tears. Only maintaining the face of a calm goddess.
I answer. “Then we shall answer back with double the force. Alert the family with the news and have them ready for an assault, we are attacking tonight. Under the veil of darkness of rain.”
They all nod at my command and file out of the room. I finally turn my attention the windows. The rain still patters one. The wind still commands the branches. The branches still kept beating the same rhythm. Today, our family bleeds. Tonight, the Hollow Family will bleed in theirs.
“Oh my gosh, this is so awesome!”
“Rainbow Dash, what are you reading?” Twilight asked.
Rainbow Dash answered the lavender pony’s question by dragging her to the screen of a computer. The computer rests on a table that lies under a window. The window greats the two ponies with a view of a chicken coup and patches of various animals all resting in the sunny rays of Celestia’s sun.
“Look at this Twilight, ‘Shy The Mafia’. Fluttershy is writing a story about her in a Mafia!” Rainbow Dash said.
Twilight gave the cyan pegasus a glare. “Rainbow Dash! That’s private. Why are you going into her computer?”
“Well it’s been hours since Fluttershy went up to go look for that BattleClouds game. I’m getting bored here,” she said.
Twilight facehoof’d.“Rainbow Dash, that is no excuse for-“
The mares both perk their ears at the sound of hooves trotting down the stairway. They quickly close Fluttershy’s fan fiction and move back to their original spots. A yellow pegasus trots down with a board game on her back.
“Hey girls, I found that game we were going to play,” she said.
She looks at them to see their faces giving her very bad poker faces. “What are you two doing?” she asked.