I Don't Know How to Use Doors

by The Real Darkness

Mulling for Greed

I awoke with a sound of loud banging as the doors below me. I jumped from bed and began to gather my things in a large bag, all the special loot that I wanted to myself, the bits, I've earned, the Elements, supplies, and all foods I could fit into the russet sack. I turned to the dark stairway and stared, knowing that the pegasus that I helped to land said a few polite words about me. I ran to my entry window and threw it open wide, finding a magenta wall blocking me and those six damned ponies down there again, accompanied by some sort of small reptile.

They have me in Check.

I looked back to the staircase and heard a large smashing sound, the door crashing open. Guards were no doubt pouring in and ready to find me. I took a red jeweled golden necklace out of the sack, an Element of Harmony. I held it up to the window, the ponies seeing me with my mask and their lost prize. The barrier went away as they saw it being held in shock.

Well done, but the King always has one safe space to move.

I threw the necklace, watching the cyan pegasus catch it with glee, flying quickly to it. The guards were on the second floor rushing me. I grabbed my bow and loaded a blunt arrow, flying out the window afterwards, barely escaping the law. I pulled back the arrow as I fell and shot it at the necklace my enemy held, making it fly out of their hand and towards an empty street that held guards all over. I began a sprint towards it.

"Thanks for holding onto that for me, but I need it back now." I dropped a flash and smoke bomb behind me, both should leave me concealed as I run.

"That's the same creature from the library!" I heard the purple unicorn shout over while they dealt with the irritants.

The guards now began to run towards me as I went towards my trophy. I knew it wouldn't end well, but it was something I would have to do. I drew back my bow, this time with the real painful arrows. I began to take targets, shooting at guards that were near my objective or close to me. My shot entered their legs, making sure they would tumble during their run. The monarchs were not ready for my other tools. I soon reached the necklace and snatched it, putting it into a satchel while I ran right towards a wall.

I pulled back a new arrow, one I haven't used since I arrived. I drew it back and shot a post on a house balcony, the arrow lodging in the wood and letting down a rope. I dropped another flashbomb behind me before taking off up the rope, climbing as fast as I could manage. I reached the top, looking back and seeing the ponies blinded mid-chase, the six special ones still distracted by the smoke and even more so by the second bomb. I pried the arrow from the post to not show my exit and cut off a following path. I immediately began running toward my fence's hideout along the roof. I needed to know another city, a way to get there quickly and quietly. I was breathing rather hard while I jumped roofs and ran along them, most of the guards left behind and ponies gazing up at my dashing form. I soon found the alley of safety and dropped into it, knocking on the vent.

The vent was soon pulled open and I slid in, looking to my dingy fence, my cloth mask still hiding my lower face.

"I need a way out of this city and a new place to hit up other than here and Ponyville." I spoke quickly, handing him a lot of my loot and many of my bits, his hooves dropping them to the floor from his unpreparedness.

"You could go to the Crystal Empire," He reacted fast as if this had happened before, "I'll organize a group to ship some supplies with that you can hide in." He already suggested a way out.

"They'd stop the trains and search them." I responded, peeking outside the vent.

"Meet me outside the wall on this end of the city, I'll transport you in a separate wagon to the Crystal Empire."

"Set me up with a fence there too. I'm carrying the Elements of Harmony on me and I need time to figure out how to return them without getting caught."

He nodded and walked up the stairs to the coverup business. I just then realized, he owned this tavern, all of it and he was pulling strings for me. I had a single real friend in this world. I exited the vent and looked down both ways in the alley before taking off down the streets in daylight, the ponies in the shantytown not caring at all. I ran the to city wall and scaled it quickly, using the claw to climb bricks that were stuck out. I then rappelled down the wall on the other side, already finding a note in the grass.

I knew you would find this quickly, come down the cliff side to find where the wagon is being set up at. It's up to you to find out how you wish to do it.

I looked over the cliff edge and found it to be a long way down, almost a straight fall. I pulled myself back and ran options through my head, I had some time to think of my exit. There were two ways to go down the cliffs, one being a straight drop, the other being long drops with ledges in between each. I could always take the train tracks on foot. I could hitch a moving train. My best try would to be taking the tracks on foot.

I began to jog around the city wall, staying close so the guards in the rich areas would fail to see me. I took the shorter way around and ended up at the station in the very front of the city. I stopped at the beginning and planned a sneaking route behind the stopped trains. I took out my bow and readied a blunt arrow in case I needed a pony to whip his head in a different direction. I peeked out from behind the wall, finding the station almost empty to begin with. I only had to worry about the occasional guard patrol and the station workers. I waited until the patrols were out of site before I swooped behind a train and began my slow traverse across the station, staying behind the train until the very end. I peeked out again, waiting for the opportune moment. I crossed to the wall when it struck.

I put away my bow, hooking it to my back again and taking off in another light jog. The tracks led down tunnels in the mountain where it was mostly dark and kept alight by sparsely placed lights in the rocks above. The scenery of the tunnel was very monotonous, the same lights placed the same distance apart and the almost congruent rocks that kept appearing along my unexpected exercise. It wasn't too overbearingly long until I reached the exit. Upon entering the little less than blinding light, I took a right and began running around the mountain, heading to the drop off where the wagon awaited me. It was another many minutes until I arrived, the city above me going into lockdown.

I reached the wagon and quickly jumped on it, taking a hiding spot along the supplies. Without confirmation, the wagon began moving.

"Glad to see you made it. You're the best thief I've ever had working for me." I heard the gruff voice of my fence speaking.

"I'll always be the best and I'll always slip away."

"I'll be headed to a far out place where a good friend will smuggle you in with her cherry deliveries. Just stay quiet until we reach there. We will be meeting her at Neighgra Falls."

"Please give me a map of this land before we depart, and a way to reach you."

"Can do." With his last words, the trip to Neighgra Falls fell to a silence born from the knowledge of unnecessary talk and necessary subterfuge. Any patroling guards looking for me via air in case I had escaped the city, which I had, would be on the lookout for me.

I had eventually fallen into a sleep from the monotonous pounding of hooves upon the dirt.

I awoke to a hoof shaking my body awake and the sound of waterfalls.

"Time to switch...get into the empty crate right behind Cherry Jubilee," my fence again.

I pulled myself out of the wagon and stood in the grasses next to a large waterfall.

"You didn't say he looked like that!" I heard a feminine voice behind me and I turned around after pulling my mask back up.

"I assume you are Cherry Jubilee. I appreciate you smuggling me," I walked over and my fence handed me a map on the way over.

I opened it for a moment and found our position and then the Crystal Empire. A long way of traveling from the looks of it.

"You must be Garrett then, a pleasure to make your acquaintance," she nodded to me.

I tucked the map away and entered the empty crate that was left open for me. It was cramped, but not too uncomfortable.

"I'd like to get going as soon as possible," I said.

"Well, we will. I'll be dropping you off in the storage warehouse, so you can make your home there. Just be careful, the ponies know me to be a nice mare, they don't need to know about my dark dealings. I can pay you for all the things you manage to steal, I have some connections after all," Cherry Jubilee explained while she covered me with cherries and sealed the crate, "I'll let you out when it's safe."

"Garrett, feel free to come and visit me every now and then, alright?!" I heard my now old fence shout so he'd make sure I could hear him. I noted to stop by if I'm ever in Canterlot again.


I stood once the crate was unsealed again and I stretched, hiding my face again.

"Good, you are awake. It is nighttime and this is the warehouse. I'll leave a window on the roof open for you at all times," Cherry Jubilee said, "and I'll have a bed moved in here as soon as I can. You may have to hide from my workers though, they do like to come and go a lot during the day, so I had the crates in a corner all switched around so you could have some room."

She really did all she could for me, odd how these ponies were like that. They knew I was considered wanted by the law, but they still did this. I know she also had to have caught wind of the crime I recently committed in stealing the elements.

"Thanks, I'll be headed out the window now," I said and began climbing up the crates stack on a wall before I slung out the claw and pulled myself out the window.

"Be careful!" She called after me.

Careful, when am I not being careful?

I ran off the roof of the warehouse, jumping to another building and peeked over the edge. I was in the lesser business side of the Empire. The part where all the behind-the-scenes stuff happened; storage, manufacture, labor, and anything that wasn't directly involved with customers. I looked to my left and saw the huge Crystal Palace there. I checked the inside of my clothing and found the elements and the map to still be there. I ran off the roof tops to quicken my pace there. Not a single soul was out at night, mostly due to the frigid chill in the air. The patrolling guard was very rare in this district, a blessing for me.

It took at least two hours to make my way into the nobility and see the palace up close, there was definitely more guards patrolling here and in pairs with the occasional pony going by. I was moving unhindered, none of the guards were even checking the rooftops. My arrival here was unknown and my presence obsolete. It wasn't long before I made it to the palace.

And here is the challenge, the distance to balconies that stuck out was too great for the claw to swoop me across and guards were looking in all directions. I didn't want to give suspicion that I had arrived so I needed to get some kind of distraction, a good one.

I need those guards to come out and tend to a problem so I can start another problem.

I gazed around before I set my eyes on an open window with a view of a stove, perfect. My bow was knocked with a fire arrow before I loosed it into the home and began to watch the kitchen of a noble burn, the guards near the palace were quick to see the smoke and galloped over.


I carefully leaped down onto other crystal structures before I ran into one of the four spires and made my way into the palace. This would be the difficult challenge, or tedious one. I had to make it all the way to the top of this palace quickly and see the ruler of these lands. I started at the stairs, climbing swiftly, but quietly.

A hoof step. Stop. Fade to silence. Continue. It was a simple pattern that was repeated many times until the stairs stopped going up and I entered the suites of the palace, for the most important of dignitaries and guests.

I'd love to take all these things, but I don't have the time.

The guards were a lot more sparse here, posted at the ends of hallways or rarely patrolling. It didn't take long for me to locate the next staircase either. The Crystal Palace was a lot more straightforward than Canterlot Castle was. This looping staircase led me all the way to the top, but from what it looked like outside, that wasn't where I needed to be.

The very top was some kind of overlooking open rooftop, below that was the throne room. So the ruler's room must have been just below that. That's where I made my entrance and I was correct, two guards posted just outside the door and well decorated, with spears to accompany their suggested ranks.

I don't think I could keep quiet on this.

I took the note out from one of my pouches, a simple thing to deliver. Put it there and run, easy, right?

I tossed a smoke bomb up and the guards immediately went defensive when it landed at their hooves. It exploded and created a perfect opaque sheen for me. I could create a little more time for my escape if I dumbfounded them, maybe a few seconds longer.

My body swooped into the lingering mist and I just barely opened the door before shutting it quietly and swiftly walking over to the bed and leaving the note next to the dresser, lighting the candle on it with a match as well to give attention to it. My next stop, the open balcony.

My feet raced with soft taps across the floor and a sound of infant crying reverberated throughout the room and a shuffling in the bed was next.

The door slammed open and things got crazy.

In the current darkness, I jumped from the balcony and shot the claw out, catching the balcony ledge above me. My perfect escape, but I had to be quick, there was a small likelihood that I could be caught making exit stage right. I let the claw free of its attached talons and fell to the balcony, continuing my descent while there was a short shouting moment above me. It wasn't long before I dropped and landed with a thud in the empty streets, commotion around the still burning home.

My feet carried me up structuring with my hands and onto roofs to arrive back to my new home.