A Forgotten Trooper

by SonicTeam34

Chapter 23: Ghost Town

After a few more days of working on the Gunship after that rain storm, Strider had managed to fix the transportation bay doors and got most of the left wing repaired. Fluttershy had also begun to hang around the Trooper, often moving some animal classes closer to the Gunship so she could keep an eye on him.

Strider didn't really mind. She wasn't distracting him or damaging anything. But she had gone into Ponyville for something, leaving Strider to his work and thoughts.

Which was exactly what Strider was doing. The Trooper twisted a screwdriver to the right as far as he could, until it stopped for some reason. Strider looked at the screw which was still not completely tightened, before twisting the screwdriver again.

"Come on," Strider muttered, trying to tighten the screw.

After a few tugs, the screw finally began to move again. But when Strider turned the screwdriver one last time, the screwdriver broke off, part of it stuck in the screw.

Strider looked at the broken tool for a second, before sighing in annoyance as he chucked it into the transportation bay. He reached down to his utility belt and opened up a pouch. Inside were a few shiny gold bits that Fluttershy had given him if he needed something from town.

"How much would a screwdriver cost here?" Strider pondered to himself as he stood up and began walking towards town.

It didn't take long before Strider entered Ponyville, even less to reach the market. However, something was wrong, very wrong. Not a single pony was around. None tending to gardens, none eating food, none managing the markets, none even in the streets.

Strider reached around his utility belt and grabbed the DC-17 pistol he had strapped to it and rose it up. He walked around the market, checking every nook and cranny for something strange. But the only thing he found was a single mouse who was nibbling on a piece of cheese.

After Strider was sure he had checked the whole market, he began walking down the street towards the shops that were in buildings. He made sure to keep both his eyes wide open, trying to find a pony or a creature, or any sign of life.

Strider finally stopped walking when he noticed a hooded figure standing all alone in the middle of the street. The Trooper imminently ducked behind a wooden wagon, hiding his armor from view.

The figure either didn't notice him, or didn't care, as it continued to do its thing. It patted what appeared to be a hoof into the ground. It was walking on four hooves which made Strider think that it might be a pony. However, the townsfolk's reactions told him that if it was a pony, then it was a dangerous pony.

Strider watched intently as the figure looked around, before trotting over to another spot in the street. They dug at the ground once again, before turning sharply over towards the wooden cart Strider was hiding. The Trooper quickly ducked behind the cart, debating whether or not to open fire or not.

When he peaked over the wagon again, he saw two glowing yellow eyes staring directly at him. He ducked again, ready to fire at the creature. However, when he looked back up again, the figure was gone.

"What, where did they go?" Strider wondered, getting up from his hiding/cover spot.

With the DC-17 primed and ready, Strider began a perimeter check around the area. He checked a few alleyways, an old garbage can, but the figure remained hidden.

Eventually, Strider finished his search and went over to a house. He holstered the DC-17 back into his Utility belt, before knocking on the house's door.

"Hello? Anyone home?" Strider called out.

The house remained quiet, nothing stirring within it's walls, not even a mouse. Strider walked away from the house and began walking back towards Fluttershy's cottage. He had a few questions for the pegasus once she got back from her trip.

As Strider reached the top of a hill, he spotted Fluttershy entering her cottage. He quickly rushed over to the door and knocked.

Fluttershy opened the door and smiled. "Hello Strider." She greeted, stepping to the side to let him inside.

"Hello Fluttershy, i've got a few questions about something I saw in town." Strider stated.

Fluttershy's smile faded and was quickly replaced with worry. Strider stepped into the cottage and shut the door, before heading over to a chair. Fluttershy did the same, sitting down on the couch next to the chair.

"So, I was going to go buy a new screwdriver but for some reason, the whole town was empty. Except for one hooded figure standing alone in the street." Strider exclaimed.

Fluttershy fiddled with her fore hooves for a few seconds, before looking up at Strider.

"T-That was Z-Zecora, a zebra." Fluttershy claimed.

"A zebra? What are they doing in Ponyville?" Strider questioned.

"I don't know, but she's mysterious, and creepy." Fluttershy said.

Strider put a hand to his chin under his helmet, deep in thought. Ok, mysterious zebra scaring the town stiff. The Zebra also seems to be creepy and strange, as well as wear a hooded cloak and has glowing yellow eyes.

"Hmm, where does Zecora live?" Strider asked.

"That's the creepiest part, she lives in the Everfree Forest." Fluttershy stated.

Ok, that WAS strange. Strider didn't see any weapons on Zecora, but the zebra was also wearing a cloak. But any weapons that were small enough to be hidden under a cloak would most likely, not be enough to fend off the forest's inhabitants.

"Zecora is either brave, strong, or stupid." Strider muttered.

Fluttershy nodded, before glancing out the window at the setting sun. Strider also took note of that. How long had he been searching that town for Zecora?

"Well, i'll let you get some sleep. Thank's for the info." Strider thanked, before walking over to the door and leaving the cottage.

The Trooper made his way over to the Gunship and knelt down next to the left wing he was repairing. He was about to reach for a screwdriver but quickly remembered why he had been in Ponyville.

"I'll need to get another one tomorrow." Strider told himself, hopping into the transportation bay and shutting the doors.

Strider quickly removed his armor, setting it down next to his makeshift bed he had made. Strider laid down on the Transportation bay's floor, his head on a pillow Fluttershy had given him. His black bodysuit was basically already a blanket that was always around his body so he just shut his eyes and drifted off to sleep.