My Little Hope: Caring is Magic

by batman0889

Chapter 4 Think of what you have

Chapter 4 Think of what you have.

In a little town called Ponyville, all of the young fillies and colts were asleep in their beds, all huddled up in their blankets, cosy and warm. Anypony still awake was probably sitting in front of their fireplace with a mug of hot cocoa, enjoying the late evening and staying warm. The night-owls would sit on their couch and gaze out the window and see thousands of snowflakes fall ever so delicately down to the ground Say to themselves, “I sure am glad I'm not out there in the cold.” continue to sip their cocoa and stare aimlessly into the open world beyond window until they've convinced themselves that it was time to go to bed. Anypony with any sense was indoors on the crisp, wintry night.

The night was completely silent, all except for the gentle snowflakes falling from the sky. But the anxiety of a certain pegasus had become too much. This wintry harsh night was disturbed by the pastel pegasus in a rush, heading over to Ponyville General Hospital. Only this trip wasn't for the purpose of spreading cheer to the patients, but one of desperation; for Max hadn't got any better after Twilight had cast that spell on him.
In frustration at her situation Fluttershy muttered aloud, “AARGH! What was Twilight thinking?! 'Oh, Fluttershy can’t look after a colt, she a big ball of empathy. I know what’s best for every situation because I have read so many books!' Pfft, what a good friend she is!”
Tucked away in Fluttershy’s pouch was Max, barely moving. He was experiencing a searing, nerve shredding pain that was pushing him in and out of consciousness. When he was awake, he could only think of how Fluttershy's friends had betrayed him. Fluttershy had assured him that they were nice, but she was wrong.
What did I do to her? Why did Twilight hurt me? Fluttershy should have good friends, but those ponies were mean.... And.Max's strength drained and he fell unconscious, Noticing the increased movement and heat coming from the bag.
Fluttershy called out, “Don’t worry Max, were almost at the hospital. We're going to get you checked out.” Turning her attention back to flying, Fluttershy hoped to get to the hospital as timely as possible, yet still in one piece.
“Why did this have to happen to me? Max has made my life so much sweeter. But my friends-no, my ex-friends had to ruin everything. Max and I will live in my cottage forever. We won't need anypony else to mess up what we have.” Fluttershy said to herself, disgusted. But before Fluttershy could finish her self-deprecating thoughts, she spotted the hospital in the ground below. She started her descent, still bitter at the whole world.

Max came to again, his horn in agony. All of Fluttershy's friends were scary. The bright pink one, she was too loud and in-your-face, Max didn't like her at all. The pretty rainbow one was mean, even though she said sorry, Max still didn't forgive her. The orange one talked funny, Max didn't trust her. But most of all the unicorns scared him. The white one was so familiar and her big blue eyes pierced into his soul. And the purple one was the worst of the bunch, for she had lied to him. Max was very hurt. So hurt he passed out again.
“Okay, Max here it is. We're at the hospital, it’s going to be alright!” Fluttershy choked out the sentence, reassuring herself more than anypony else.
But Max didn’t hear her for he was unconscious.
Composing herself, Fluttershy strode into the quiet hospital. The usual timidness pushed aside for the needs of this colt. Her hooves clocked on the cold tile floor as she strode with a propose towards the desk. The plain white walls and the distinct smell of disinfectant may have intimidated Fluttershy at any other point in time, but not today. As she stopped at the front desk, she saw a mahogany-coloured mare sitting behind it, filing medical files for the doctors and insurance details for the administrative staff.
As Fluttershy began to come to her senses, the courage from before started to fade. “Umm …. Excuse me?” asked Fluttershy nicely. But the receptionist did not seem to hear her. Annoyed at this Fluttershy raised her volume. “Excuse me?” But to no avail the receptionist still didn’t acknowledge her presence. Fluttershy was getting rather angry by the rudeness of this mare, she took a deep breath and shout. “EXCUSE ME?!” finally the receptionist heard her and looked up from her busy work.

Staring at the chocolate mare, Fluttershy felt a sudden tang of sympathy for her. Upon closer inspection, the mare's blond mane was frazzled and unkempt, and there were deep bags under her eyes, barely hidden by her glasses.
Oh, the poor thing, Fluttershy thought. She looks like she probably hasn't slept in some time! I'll bet the only thing keeping her awake is the coffee.

Indeed, there was a stained paper hospital cup sitting next to the receptionist, which looked like it had once been used for coffee.
“Yes, hello there, how may I help you?” the receptionist snapped quite rudely at Fluttershy.
“Oh...err...yes I was hoping to see a doctor,” said Fluttershy feeling a little uncountable around this receptionist.
The receptionist stared closely at Fluttershy, she closely examined her, she didn’t really anything wrong with her apart from her black eye.
“You don’t look that bad to me, you even know what a doctor is for because there really for the ones who need them, and a black eye isn’t the biggest of worries.”
Fluttershy was getting rather unhappy with the way she was being treated, she knew what a doctor was; everypony did. However she didn’t want Max to been see yet, she only wanted to come in and get out as soon as possible.
Fluttershy got an idea. “It’s...actually about something more know, mare things.” She whispered shyly, with a perfect embarrassed blush.

The receptionist seemed to catch on suddenly, and hurriedly gushed, “OH...Okay, I didn’t need the extra information. Fine, I can have a nurse come take a look at you, just take a seat in the waiting area over there until the nurse comes,” as soon as the receptionist finished talking to Fluttershy, she went straight back to her tedious work.
Fluttershy just sighed at the impatient receptionist in wonder. How anypony could be so rude was beyond her.
Nevertheless, Fluttershy did what the receptionist had told her. She went over to the bunch of chairs and sat down, sliding off her saddlebags as she did.

Opening the bag, she peered in the pouch. Inside Max lay face down, shaking uneasily with many little twitches, only making Fluttershy more worried. She was scared, watching him suffer, and she wished that she’d never brought him to see her friends in the first place.

From Rainbow Dash bullying him about his size, Pinkie Pie treating him like a soft toy whilst crushing him in a hug, and then Twilight causing the most damage by thinking it was a good idea to use a spell on him.......Twilight!
Fluttershy felt sudden anger begin to boil in her mind at the thought her friend and where her carelessness had gotten her and max, I told her!! I told her that spell wasn't a good idea! But she didn't listen to me, and look what happened! Nopony listens to me! NOPONY EVER LISTENS TO ME! There not my friends, none of them are my friends, I don’t need them, and I don’t need any.....any....
Fluttershy anger came to a halt as see stare down at the saddle bag in front of her ,seeing max twitching and making little painful moan replacing her rage with sadness and worry and soon she started to cry a little. Fluttershy reach down and softly stroke max’s mane, “I’m sorry max, this is my entire fault, I never meant for this to happen to you”
She had only had him for two days... and she was beginning to doubt her mothering skills. Fluttershy waited in the waiting room, trying to take her mind off “the worst possible thing that could happen” to Max.

The time seemed to be going so slow for Fluttershy. There was no clock in the waiting room, she had no idea how long she’d been there for. She constantly looked back at Max seeing if anything had changed, but always seemed the same.

“Fluttershy, hello.....are you here?” a voice called out from behind her. Fluttershy turned towards the voice. It was nurse red heart an old friend of hers.
“Hi, Nurse Redheart... It’s been a while.” Fluttershy seem shy of her old friend, for they hadn’t talked in four years. Fluttershy used to be a nurse at Ponyville hospital a few years back, she and Nurse Red Heart were friends when they worked together.
Nurse Redheart walked over to Fluttershy and sat down next to her “Yeah, it’s been too long. It’s so good to see you, and you’re in luck. I’m the one checking you up.” Nurse Redheart lifted her clipboard and pointed to a printed piece of paper with Fluttershy information. Fluttershy felt a huge weight lift off her shoulders.
“My goodness, your eye!” said Nurse Redheart, wanting to tend to it immediately.

“Oh, my eye’s fine,” Fluttershy said, placing a hoof gingerly on the tender skin, “I actually came here for a different reason. Could we go somewhere more private?”
“Sure thing, let’s go and see if there’s a room free,” Fluttershy got up from her seat and walked with Nurse Red heart through the hospital.
Being in the hospital brought back a lot of memories for Fluttershy; some of them good, but bad for the most part. A hospital was a place for a wounded pony in need of help. Death's touch was a familiar visitor to this place. Fluttershy found it hard to cope with, which was the reason why she left the job. Someone dying is never an easy thing to watch, and when your job involves seeing death daily, it's not easy.

Fluttershy shook these thoughts away and turned to her old friend. “I-I need your help with a little colt I’m looking after,” she began, “He’s been really ill these past few days and now he has a crack all the way down his horn. He’s in a lot of pain.”
“Well then,” the white pony smiled comfortingly, “First let’s take a look at the little feller, shall we?”
Fluttershy opened up her pouch and reached down to a still disoriented and terrified Max. He kept squirming in Fluttershy’s grip, moving fatally in panic. Fluttershy thought she was going to drop him if he didn’t stop flailing.
“Well, he certainly is lively for such a small thing,” Nurse Redheart commented as she stepped in, trying to help out Fluttershy and get a look at Max, but the small foal was having none of this.

Get off me! Stop it, stop it, stop it! I don’t want to be touched! I just want these voices to stop!
Max thrashed around in Fluttershy arms, trying desperately to break free from her grip and left alone. As he flailed his legs slip free and accidentally hit the nurse in the head.
“Ow!” Nurse Redheart placed a hoove on her forehead. She could already feel a small bump beginning to form.
“He’s too scared for us to be able to do anything for him…If you want me to have a look at him, we’re going to need to sedate him.” The white earth pony said conclusively.

The nurse peered at Fluttershy anxiously, knowing that she would have mixed feelings about this. To her surprise, Fluttershy paused for only a moment before giving her a quick nod of agreement,
Between the two of them, they gently carried Max down the hall and placed him on a nearby table. He was so tiny that they didn’t a big area to hold him. Being pinned on the table, Max struggled and writhed but the act was futile. He screamed out, trying to break free.

“Okay, I’ve got the needle. I just need a clear shot to inject him,” Nurse Redheart said, “You’re going to have to hold his head still, or it could cause more damage to him.” She paused and struggled to hold down Max’s left leg with a hoof. She raised the other, and prepared the needle for the injection.
“Okay max we’re going to-er- inject you with...Something to make you feel...better” said Fluttershy, but he was too busy trying to break from her grip to listen to what she said. She moved her hoof to his head, holding with such surprising force that he couldn’t move.

In one swift strike, Nurse Redheart injected the purple fluid into the back of his head. “AAAAHHH!” Max screamed, the fluid in his head burning like acid, only making him scream and struggle more. He kept screaming loud with the two mares holding down. “I thought you said that was support to calm him down.” said Fluttershy trying to shout in her quiet way over Max’s crying.

“It'll take a minute or so to kick in” Nurse Redheart shouted back.
The two watched as the injection started to kick in. Soon his struggling slowed and eventually subsided entirely. His screaming became little moans, getting more and more quiet. The fluid in his head had stop burning and had silenced the voices and noises in his head, finally giving time to think strait.
Err... Thank goodness. I can hear myself think......huh! Wait a second I can’t move, I can’t move my arm or legs.
Max’s entire body was immobilized with the effect of the injection, he could only blink. “Now then,” said the nurse in a hushed tone as she picked max up in her arms. “Let’s get a better look at you. Shall ---” Nurse Redheart paused. She moved Max up and down in her forelegs to feel his weight. She would have sworn that she was imagining it, except she was right. Max really did feel that light. “My word, he’s so light. For somepony of his size and age he should weigh more.”
Max didn’t take that comment very kindly.
Again with the size? Well you’re not so thin yourself, maybe if you lay off the chocolate... Ugh, I wish I could use my hooves right now, Max thought to himself.

Max’s weight aside, Ponyville's best nurse carefully examined Max’s bleeding horn. The crack was very large; going all the way down the centre, a crack this size was in need of attention.
“Oh, it looks bad, the crack looks like a deep one; if this isn't tended to it could lead to problems. We'd better get this X-rayed to see if there any further damage. Are you fine with this? Seeing as you are responsible for his well being.”
Fluttershy thought about the idea of an X-ray and what would happen, but she didn’t think it would damage Max any further. “Um, I guess so. Whatever you think is best.”

Nurse Red heart left the room to go get things sorted out for Max. Now Fluttershy was left alone with her little foal. She looked down at the small colt in her hooves. He looked so tiny and helpless, still sedated and weak; everything but his eveys unable to move.

“Max!” Fluttershy scolded. “What was that all about? All of your thrashing hurt me and Nurse Redheart” she looked at Max angrily. All poor Max could do was state guiltily at his mother figure and endure her stare of disappointment.
I didn’t mean to hurt you Fluttershy, I didn’t mean to make you angry, I’m sorry, max wish he could tell fluttershy he was sorry but at this moment in time couldn’t even move.
In the time the nurse was absent, Fluttershy decided to explain to Max what was going to happen. She felt sorry for her colt, because being in a place unknown to him must be very scary. “Now Max, we’re going to take you to a room so you can get X-rayed. An X-ray is a big thing that takes picture of your insides, so we can see if there's anything wrong with your body
For some bizarre reason max picture a giant eye attached to a wall that would look at him and see into his body, in truth his childish imagination would only make him feel more scared in place like this. Minutes later Nurse Redheart came back into the room.

Fluttershy silently followed Nurse Redheart through the hospital halls with Max back in the saddlebags. The shy mare stared at the pristine white tiles on the floor as she walked, trying not to look in the many rooms they passed. She could barely contain her worry; her worry for Max and her worry for being in a hospital after so long.

Hiding behind her thick, pink mane, Fluttershy told herself to focus on something else. Focus on your hoovesteps, focus on making them as quiet as possible. Anything to distract her from the painful memories from the past and the oblivion in the future. Fluttershy lifted her hooves carefully and set them back down in a rhythmic motion, barely making a noise.
The nurse led the trio around many corners and corridors until they stopped at a lead-lined door. On the wall was a giant sign with big letters reading X-RAY ROOM. Underneath the large type were several lines in considerably smaller print including various warnings and safety precautions.

Max felt himself being lifted from his saddlebag by Fluttershy and set on a cold table.
“Ready?” Fluttershy asked. Max would have nodded his head if it weren't for the injection. Forgetting for a moment that Fluttershy didn't work here, she placed a lead sheet on his (well, you know what.) She suddenly remembered that she didn't work here anymore, her eyes widened with sudden realization and with a blush she backed away to let Nurse Redheart do her job.
“Okay Max,” Nurse Redheart said, “The X-ray is about to start.” Max's eyes looked at Nurse Redheart with understanding and a little bit of fear.

“Fluttershy, I'm going to need you to step outside for a minute, okay?” the nurse asked, but Fluttershy was already on her way out, knowing she couldn't be in the room during an X-ray.
“Max, I’m just going outside; back in a minute” Said Fluttershy before stepping out the door and shutting it softly behind her.
“Okay, Max I’m going to start the X-ray now.” Nurse Redheart turned on a switch then he felt a beam go though him, hearing the sounds of beeping and clicking. Max felt a sensation from his head to his hooves; a sensation of something going right through him.
The nurse flipped the switch again and the feeling stopped.
“Okay, Fluttershy. You can come in now” Said Nurse Redheart.
Fluttershy came in and picked up Max in her forelegs and took him back to the waiting room to wait for the X-rays to be developed.
She hoped the crack in Max's horn wasn’t too bad. She wasn’t a unicorn, so she didn’t know how bad a cracked horn was, but she hoped they be on their way home soon. Finally Nurse Redheart came back with the X-ray, Fluttershy couldn’t wait to hear the news, her anxiety soon going to consume her.

“Fluttershy? could I speak to you alone? Please?” Nurse Redheart asked in a rather nervous voice. Fluttershy carefully placed Max down on a table nearby, and he just fell limp like a rag doll. Fluttershy felt like she really shouldn’t be leaving Max like that; except she didn't have any better ideas, so she just followed her friend down the hallway. Down the corridor, another white pony, a doctor, joined them in their walk.

He wore a crisp white lab coat with pens in the top pocket, big glasses with thick black frames, and a stethoscope hanging around his neck. Fluttershy vaguely recognized him as the doctor who treated her friend-well, ex-friend,- Rainbow Dash when she had hurt her wing.
“Miss Fluttershy, is it?” the doctor spoke, “Hello, I’m Dr. Stable On behalf of the hospital, I would like to say that we are amazed to discover your son is an alicorn. It absolutely extraordinary this thing, this creature is surely one of a kind.” Fluttershy got bad vibes about this doctor, the way he was talking about Max like he wasn’t a pony and more like a lab experiment.

“Well he’s not my biological son...He’s an orphan.” Fluttershy said it like she was ashamed of herself for it, like she should have told them sooner.
“Oh! So that would explain this, it’s imposable for a pony to give birth to a alicorn, in fact there’s never been a alicorn birth recorded in the history of Equestria, how exactly did you acquire this creature?” Dr. Stable asked.
“Max! His name is Max. Stop calling him a creature or a thing, he’s a normal pony just like you. As to have I came to care for Max, I found him abandoned all alone, bleeding heavily and near death. I took him into my home and took care of his cuts, and I look after him like he’s my own child, I’d like you to treat him like a pony and not a lab experiment.” The two ponies froze in place after Fluttershy's sudden anger, leaving Dr. Stable feeling like he was a huge a jerk and feeling somewhat scared of the yellow mare.

“Well, I apologize, Miss Fluttershy, for the words I used toward your child, it was quite rude of me.”
“Oh, I'm sorry too. I just can't control my anger sometimes.” Fluttershy returned back to her normal shy self, Dr. Green eye stared with his mouth wide open at the mare he feared just moments ago now a shy normal pony.
“Well,” Dr. Stable adjusted his glasses, “I have some good news and bad news.” He said, hoping to get back on topic.
“What's the bad news?” Fluttershy got a lump in her throat, her anxiety worse than ever.

The doctor opened a door with his magic and ushered the mares inside. “The X-rays came back and it seems worse than we thought.” Dr. Stable lifted up Max's X-ray to Fluttershy's face. That word hit Fluttershy heart like daggers as she showed Fluttershy the X-rays.
“What is that?” Fluttershy pointed to a small white object at the base of Max's horn.
“Were not positive what the object is, it seems to be a sharp metal object logged in a dangerous area of Max's brain.” The doctor said, with legitimate sympathy in his voice.

That next word hit Fluttershy like a rock. “What? No, it can’t be!” She didn’t want the horrid words to be true.
The unicorn cleared his throat. “We need to get it out as soon as possible. It may have already caused some internal bleeding in his brain. But if only the bad news could end there, that's not all.” The doctor pointed at a different section of the X-ray entirely. He pointed to Max's x-ray.
“Several of his ribs are broken, which has most likely weakened his heart, liver, kidney, and other vital organs could be forced to shut down.”
This news was crushing Fluttershy's heart. No, no, no! This can’t be happening! Not now, not to Max! How could this happen? He was fine yesterday. Fluttershy screamed in her head,
“We need to get that shard object out soon NOW! or else he won’t have too long to live. I’m afraid he’s got a 10% chance of survival because of his size and the stated of his body right now, but that number will be even lower if he doesn’t has the operation. You need to make the decision now.”

“He needs that operation.” Fluttershy said, her verdict made without hesitation.
“Good, we’re need to get him prep for surgery. You’ve got 30 minutes and then he’s going in for the operation.” Dr. Stable said, pleased at Fluttershy's decision. She went back to the waiting room to spend as much time as she could with Max. She picked him back up and brought him up to her shoulder and carried him back to Dr. Stable and Nurse Redheart. She felt like crying but she didn’t want Max to know anything was wrong, but Max could sense something was up. She was being more touchy then she usually was with him and he could tell she was holding back tears.

“Max, these ponies are going to make you feel better in a minute. And when you’re out the hospital we’re going to have so much fun together. We can go for picnics in the summer, and you can help me with the animals when the winter's over, and when it’s time for you to spread your wings I’ll help you to fly.” Fluttershy kept trying to keep herself from crying by saying about the good things in the future, although deep down in her heart something was telling her that it might not come true.
She hugged him tight and whispered in his ear. “I’m always going to be there for you. Always.” Max just managed to spread his hooves around Fluttershy's neck to hug her back, sending chill down her spine as she feel his little warm hooves around neck, knowing it may be the last time she ever get to feel this.

Finally Fluttershy gave Max to the group of doctors surrounding an examination table set up for their patient. “Don’t worry, Miss Fluttershy, we have the most qualified doctors for the operation; we're going to make sure this alicorn lives.”
“Thank you, that means a lot.” Fluttershy took a deep breath, her anxiety as strong as ever.
“Take three breaths of this sleeping gas, little guy. It'll make you feel better.” One of the doctors held the mask to Max's muzzle. Immediately he began to feel a little bit light headed and then Max looked up at Fluttershy, who was putting on her brave face. She nodded, silently telling him that the doctor's words were true.

With his mind getting dizzy, he started to lose his vision, getting more and more discombobulated. He felt like he was drifting in mid air, then he suddenly realized he didn't want to leave Fluttershy. Looking up at her, he saw a single tear trail down her check and land on his face. She gave him a sympathetic smile as if to say, “It's going to be alright. Just you wait and see.” Max started to panic.
No, I don’t want those strange ponies take me away! I don’t want to die, Mommy, please don’t let them take me! Please!
Max started to cry and struggle in Fluttershy's arms, he moved his hooves to the mask and tried to pull it off his face.
“Max, no! You need to breath in the gas!” Said the doctor, trying to hold the mask to his face but the little foal kept taking it off.
No! Leave me alone, I don’t want you to take me!
“Max.” Fluttershy brought her little Max up to her face until the squirming foal was eye level with her. “Please, Max. You need these ponies take you away to make you feel better. I know you're scared, but sometimes we all have to do things we’re scared of. But you have to believe me when I say it'll be alright. I promise. I’ll be here when you wake up. I promise. Just do this for me. Please.” Fluttershy had tears streaming freely down her face in honest lament.
Max put his little hooves around her neck and gave her a hug, nuzzling against her. She could feel his tears dripping on the back of her neck as her foal sobbed in her hoove. I will.
I’ll do it for you, Mommy, Max thought to himself.

Breaking away from the hug, Fluttershy looked at her little Max, his giant puppy eyes only make it harder her to let go of him. “Come on, it's time to go.” Max gave a little nod as he allowed the doctor to place the mask on his muzzle.
Max reached out his right hoof and placed it on her nose, taking comfort in knowing she was still there. He opened his mouth to say something, but instead inhaled the last breath of sleeping gas to put him asleep. Max suddenly felt all his energy leave him in a flash, his breath became shorten with every second past, his eyelids soon felt like heavy weight. The last thing he heard was his Mommy telling him, “I love you max” until the drowsiness became too much and his eyes slowly began close; the last thing he saw was Fluttershy's sympathetic smile. Then all the colours around him started to fade away until there was nothing.